Costa meets a gardener with a suite of solutions to growing a productive balcony garden.
Wendy Siu-Chew Lee has turned her fourth-floor balcony into a bountiful vegetable garden and is out to prove “there’s nothing I can’t grow up here”.
After 5 years Wendy now has it all figured out and goes for the plants that give “the best bang for your buck” including leafy greens, broccoli and broad beans, that are some of the most productive in the sunny, north facing site.
Wendy’s homemade compost bin is an easy-to-move, 100L wheelie bin with holes drilled in the sides for aeration, that gets filled with leaf litter. Kitchen scraps go into the worm farms along with a sprinkle of lime to reduce smell, and shredded paper, cardboard and dried leaves to add carbon. “There’s a balance of about four to one – four being the carbon, one being the greens that come out of the kitchen.”
Maximising space is also key to productivity, so she grows climbing vegetables and fruit such as peas and grapes. The grapes also provide shelter in the heat of summer and privacy from the neighbours.
Wendy’s garden shows you that good things take time. When you look after a garden your garden will look after you – inside and out, year after year!
Cos Lettuce (Lactuca sativa cv.)
Bok Choy (Brassica rapa cv.)
Broad Bean (Vicia faba cv.)
Broccoli (Brassica oleracea cv.)
Blueberry (Vaccinium cv.)
Snow Pea (Pisum sativum cv.)
Grape (Vitis cv.)
Filmed on Dharug Country
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