The weather has been hovering around 70F and that means it's time to plant vegetables! This year I'm going to grow Japanese Eggplants, Sprite Tomatoes, and Siberian Tomatoes. If you remember this is the first year I'm using the Earthbox to grow vegetables. I've read many good things about it and would like to try it myself. To determine what vegetables to grow and where to place the seedlings, refer to the Earthbox website. I'm growing two eggplants in one, and two tomato plants in another.
- Earthbox Garden Kit (includes one EarthBox, one aeration screen, one water fill tube, two fitted covers, four casters, 16 oz 7-7-7 plant food, and 16 oz dolomite)
- 2 cu.ft Organic potting mix (you can use any potting mix but I used Miracle Grow Organic Choice)
1. The Earthbox Garden Kit includes one EarthBox, one aeration screen, one water fill tube, two fitted covers, four casters, 16 oz 7-7-7 plant food, and 16 oz dolomite.
2. Install the four casters to the bottom of the EarthBox. This is optional but it gives you the ability to move the Earthbox around, it gets really heavy when you fill it with almost 2 cu.ft of potting mix!
3. Set the plastic aeration screen firmly to the bottom. Attach the fill tube and press it firmly to the round cutout in the corner of the screen.
4. Pack the two corner cutouts in the screen with moist potting mix. It's important to pack it firmly because this is how the plants get water. It's okay if you let some of the potting mix fall through the screen.
5. Continue adding potting mix until it reaches the top 2-3 inches of the pot.
6. Sprinkle the dolomite on top of the potting mix.
7. Mix the dolomite with the top 3 inches of the potting mix.
8. Add some more potting mix to cover the dolomite.
9. Create a small trough and then pour the dry fertilizer in a strip. The location of the fertilizer varies, refer to the placements guide. Cover the trough with moist potting mix and pat down. Do not mix the fertilizer.
10 & 11. Add some more potting mix until it is about 2 inches above the rim of the box. Align one of the round cutout holes over the fill tube and carefully stretch the cover over the top of the EarthBox.
12. Plan where you want to place the seedlings (refer to the placements guide). In this case, I'm planting two japanese eggplants.
13. Cut and "X" in the cover for each plant. The "X" should be the size of the rootball.
14. The eggplant in its place. Water through the tube until water comes out of the overflow spout.
15. This is the other Earthbox I planted with Sprite tomotoes on the left, and Siberian tomatoes on the right.
That's it! Just make sure it gets 6-8 hours of full sun. If everything goes well, all it needs is water for the whole season!
I bought this self-watering container from Walmart early in the season. It claims it can draw water up to roots for up to 2 weeks. This is not true especially for sun-loving plants. I would say it would last at most 3 days under the sun in hot and humid weather. I think if you use this container in the shade, it can last for a week but I doubt it can last for two weeks. When you buy these self-watering container you need to determine what kind of plants you are going to put in. If the label says it can water for up to two weeks, it really depends on the watering frequency and the type of plant you have. I still find myself watering it every other day. Although the good thing about this is, it has room for excess water that acts as a giant saucer. So even if you water too much, the water reservoir will hold the water instead of spilling all over the place.
I was talking to my neighbor the other day and she told me her plants are doing really bad this year. She planted some Gernaiums and use Bacopa as a filler for her window box. I have been noticing her plants doing worst and worst every week but I was thinking she probably doesn't have time to do the the normal maintenance (watering, pruning, etc.). After talking to her, she told me the reason is because she used cheap dirt. She made up for it by adding fertilizer but the plants just never bloom and they look pathetic. Is it true that cheap dirt is bad compare to the brand name potting soil?
This is a picture of her plant that's not doing so good