First Attempt at Apartment Vegetable Gardening
Early this year I decided that I wanted to grow vegetables in my apartment. I didn't have a very good sense of what was required and kind of dove in before I did too much research.
Initially, I tried to grow some things on the windowsill. I live in a pretty small place with a north facing window, but there are two buildings painted white outside and I thought this would help some things grow on reflected light. This was not the case, and I had extremely leggy results. Here is a picture of the window:
I decided that lights were the best option, and fluorescents seemed like the obvious choice. I immediately bought a ballast at the nearby Wal-mart and put one warm and one cool 4ft tube inside it. I also had an additional ballast for one tube and I put a cool white in there as well. This makes a total of three tubes. I found some scrap wood someone was putting out for trash and made a very basic setup on the floor. Total, it cost me $30 for the setup and about $20 for seeds, soil and other supplies. Here are some pictures of this setup:
The majority of the plants are inside recycled Pop-Bottle Sub-irrigated planters that I learned about in the blog, Inside Urban Green. I have found this blog to be an invaluable resource. I'm growing many herbs, tomatoes, peppers, strawberries, and some leafy greens.
My question is twofold. First, I would like to know if this is adequate light to sustain the plants permanently. I am a poor college student living in a small apartment and there is no way to grow anything outside. Would fertilizer help? What kind? I'm stuck with the space I have.
If it is not possible, what suggestions do you have for me. Keep the small budget and lack of space in mind before you answer. I have a feeling that if these plants cant produce crops, it may not be worth the money to keep the lights on. I did notice though, that my roma-tomatoes have about 3 or four areas where fruit is starting to form.
What do you think?