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An imperfect life guide for women
terrarium
Author | Photo Molly Grove

The Broke Girl’s Guide To: Small Space Gardening

Around my neighbourhood, I’ve noticed spring’s first flower buds poking through the soil. I’m especially envious of the purple crocuses and tiny hyacinths dotting a neighbour’s front yard that I get to admire on my daily commute to the TTC station. Unfortunately, living in a second floor apartment, I don’t have a lush front lawn or backyard space at my disposal. I imagine many of you frugal, faithful readers are in the same situation.

I’m lucky enough to have generous-sized balcony to use as I please, and once spring decides it actually wants to arrive for real, I’m going to satiate my green thumbs with a few of these planting projects:

This self watering bottle pot project is great for many reasons – it makes use of a two-litre pop bottle that you probably already have lying around the house, does double duty by keeping your thirsty plants moist (especially handy for you busy or forgetful folks) and can be used exclusively as an indoor planter. The blog we linked to has used the project to start seeds, but we think you can grow pretty much anything that doesn’t require too much space in these nifty little pots.

The next two projects are a bit more ambitious and require the use of power tools (try the newly-opened Toronto Tool Library if you need a loaner), but are brilliant ideas for making the best use of small spaces while repurposing unlikely objects. This project cleverly turns a run-of-the-mill wood pallet into a lush vertical garden for a balcony. Check the free stuff sections of Craigslist or Kijiji for wooden pallets, or try poking around the dumpsters of your local grocery stores (make sure you ask someone – She Does The City does not condone stealing!). Or try this project, which can turn a section of PVC tube into a strawberry planter by drilling openings along the length of it. Although less common, you might find some free or cheap PVC pipe from Craigslist and Kijiji too.

If all else fails, spread the floral love through the city with these super cute seed bombs. Mulch up newspaper in a blender, add seeds, drain excess water, press into moulds and leave them to dry. They’d make great DIY gifts or use them yourself to add a bit of colour to some otherwise drab parts of the city.

For more garden love, check out our DIY How To’s on hanging terrariums,  creating your own container garden, or creating a green space in your apartment!

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