Stephanie’s Corner: Woolly Herb Shack

Apr 17, 2010

photo credit: Suthi Picotte

Wally loves herbs (and vegetables)! This charming surf shack grows annual vegetables, perennial herbs, and some flowers for the pollinators.

Window Wally (W3)
One cherry tomato anchors each pocket, flanked by basil (a good companion plant – Genovese and ‘Magic Mountain’), Swiss chard (‘Bright Lights’) and ornamental salvias (Cleveland Sage, ‘Sage of Bath’). The dramatic black sweet potato, Ipomea ‘Chillin’ Blackberry Star’ will spill down to the ground as spring turns to summer. Always plant a few flowers to make sure your veggies get pollinated.

Herb Door (W1 x 5)
Top row: prostrate rosemary (on sides), evergreen bunching onions, everbearing strawberries
Pepper row: ‘Yolo Wonder,’ ‘Chervena Chuska,’ ‘Golden Treasure’ with Greek and Italian oregano spilling over
Eggplant row: (two each)‘Lavender Touch,’ ‘Chinese Eggplant’ – with thymes (German and ‘Variegated Lemon’)
Fourth row: cilantro, onion chives, Italian parsley
Mint row: ‘Orange mint,’ ‘Pineapple Mint,’ ‘Apple mint,’ ‘Spearmint’

one sunny wall (at least six hours of full sun!)
herbs, vegetables, flowers (plants and/or seeds)
really good potting soil (vegetable mix)
Wallys – as many as you like! (hanging hardware included)
handy water source (hose or big watering can)
organic vegetable food
tools: level, drill, masking tape, pencil

1) Measure your space, calculate your Wally order, shop for plants and soil.
2) Hang your Pockets
3) Fill halfway with soil
4) Plant your garden
5) Water (regularly) + feed (follow the instructions!)
6) Harvest + eat

photo credit: Suthi Picotte

Think about how your plants will grow, both on top and in the Pockets. Aggressive rooters, like mints, should be in their own Pocket as they won’t be good neighbors.

Combine upright plants (eggplant, peppers, onions) with low growing and spilling plants (oregano, strawberries, sweet potatoes).

Plant what you really want to eat and drink. Hate salads? Don’t plant lettuce. Love mojitos? Plant LOTS of mint!

Don’t forget to include some flowers. Many of the herbs will bloom, but you need some big beautiful blooms to attract those friendly pollinators.

Trim the bigger plants (tomatoes, rosemary, sweet potatoes) as they get leggy. Pick the fruit as it ripens, and cut off herb stems and leaves as needed – don’t pull out the roots though, as they will keep growing.

Replace annual vegetables and flowers as their seasons end. If your climate allows, rotate crops seasonally (broccoli in the fall), and try a cover crop (alfalfa, vetch) from seed in the winter, or early spring, to refresh your soil.

Compost? Worms? Winter color? More on these to come…

Happy Gardening!

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