Gardening for the Urban Dweller
July 10, 2010 5:54 PM   Subscribe

Urban gardening and agriculture are becoming increasingly important as our world becomes more urbanized. Urban Gardening Help is for those environmentally conscious urban dwellers who want to use hydroponics and other tools to create a green corner devoted to nature in their own home. Urban Gardens looks for innovative and eco-friendly designs, trends, and ideas for the stylish urban home. See, for example, tiny herb gardens, where succulent cuttings come in small packages. Urban Garden Casual works with the constraints of limited-space, light, and micro-climates created from the shadows of neighboring buildings by using unconventional ideas like the garden pouch.
posted by netbros (9 comments total) 48 users marked this as a favorite

/angry NYC urban dweller
posted by Threeway Handshake at 6:46 PM on July 10, 2010

I've found myself doing square foot gardening this summer. It has worked very well and was much easier than hydroponics or other high density solutions. Most successful has been spinach and broccoli. Also try a potato bin. Those things are the ultimate in small density high yield. You could easily do a stacked square foot setup on a balcony or small patio area and really up your yield to space ratio.
posted by humanfont at 8:01 PM on July 10, 2010 [1 favorite]

The Year of The Flood.
posted by ovvl at 10:06 PM on July 10, 2010

Whenever I go into the indoor gardening / hydroponics store I can never get the right advice I need for my vegetables because all the clerks think I'm speaking in code.
posted by wcfields at 10:10 PM on July 10, 2010 [4 favorites]

I hope some unidentified militants don't get to this giant Buddha.
posted by StickyCarpet at 11:11 PM on July 10, 2010

From the current fourth entry on the urbangardensweb main page:

I came cross this cool spinning “ferris wheel” planter while researching items to include in the small two-room garden shed I am designing with interior designer, Victoria Lyon for the upcoming Stamford Designer Show House.

800 dollar planter to grow about 12 bucks worth of lettuce. Awesome.
posted by Mayor Curley at 4:57 AM on July 11, 2010

I've been talking about this kind of thing with a coworker. It seems really interesting, but the question that keeps cropping up, and that I haven't seen answered anywhere is, what about the pollution.

I live in Mexico City, and there's quite a bit of this heavy, sticky gray dust that gets everywhere. If your windows and doors are fairly new and snug, it's not a huge problem indoors, but on balconies and terraces, there's always some of it. I suspect it's mostly dust from the streets, a mixture of asphalt particles and miscellaneous crap, and it's kind of nasty.

The question is, is there any risk growing vegetables exposed to this stuff? You'd think if it contained heavy metals, for instance, they'd be absorbed by the plants. Has there been any solid research on this? I'd love to get started with some balcony gardening, but not if I'm going to significantly increase my exposure to potentially carcinogenic and poisonous stuff.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 7:42 AM on July 11, 2010

Thanks a lot for this.
I started with indoor tomatoes and herbs this spring, moved on to indoor succulents a couple weeks ago, and I just started the stratification process on some Japanese maple seeds that I bought off of eBay. I'm a little worried right now about how cold it gets, even indoors, in winter, and wondering how I'm going to give them enough light. Will dig through these sites to see if I can find anything.
posted by emilyd22222 at 8:25 AM on July 11, 2010

Joakim, though this is not a complete answer, you may wish to see:
Effects of Air Pollution on Agricultural Crops
Urban Agriculture and soil contamination

Keep in mind that this material the plants are being exposed to, you are also inhaling when you are outside.
posted by nTeleKy at 3:25 PM on July 12, 2010

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