Here are a few pictures of my SoCal garden as of June 3, 2012. I’ve been working this tiny 5’x2’ plot in my apartment complex’s backyard for the past couple years. This year I’m going to work on expanding it. My gf’s parents own the building and have graciously agreed to pretty much takeover the back and let me expand however I want. My current plan is to rip out that bush/flower thing next to the garden, dig up all that crab grass, box it off, add a shit ton of good dirt, and expand. Then I’m going to run a tressle up the side of the wall and let some cucumbers run wild. I may also line up a bunch of lettuce boxes and flowers along the fence across the little walk way. There were previously a ton of dead plants and garbage sitting in the corner that totally destroyed all the grass in that corner. I laid out some sod pads a couple weeks back, but they are struggling in the summer son. Depending on how much work I can get done, I might tear it all back up and box that off for future expansion too.
Growth wise, I previously had a couple tomato plants, pepper plants, kalarabis (if you don’t know what this is, go find a store that has it. It is basically like a radish and should be used squarely as a salt delivery vehicle. Don’t be afraid to just douse it), basil, and other herbs. The loan holdover is a jalapeno plant that is still producing. The tomato plants always did well, but after two years kicked the bucket and are making themselves into dino juice for some robot’s use millions of years from now (yes, I am doing my part to meet the future’s energy needs indeed). The herbs never really took off, so I’m staying away from those for now. There are four new tomato plants that are really taking off, three heirlooms and one cherry. On the advice of Agridude Paul I planted a bunch of marigolds that seem to be really helping the tomatoes. Apparently they attract bees to help with the pollination and other good bugs.
I’ll keep adding more pictures as the expansion proceeds. Not really sure what plants I’m going to go with in the main part of the expanded spread, so please chime in with any recommendations. The plot gets hit with almost constant sun year round (yes living in SoCal has its benefits), but the air and dirt are pretty much atrocious. There is also constant danger posed by people walking by on the way to the trash and laundry room, and on the weekend, almost constant drunken horse play. And the wildlife extends beyond your mere lady bugs and caterpillars; we see more than our share of raccoons, possoms, alley cats, and people running from the police (gotta love urban gardening). So any plant that go into my spread have got to be hardy. I’ll probably run up a shrubbery, but still….