While trying to adapt my garden knowledge to growing on a sweltering rooftop I have run into more than a few speedbumps. However, the initial garden implementation has still seen a few successes. Let’s celebrate them!
An early step in any garden should be the start of a composting system. We used a simple plastic bin with a lid for our small space and will be adding a second to make turning easier. Filled with alternating layers of kitchen scraps (nitrogen) and paper (carbon), along with some local soil to kick-start the microbial activity and add a few earth worms, the bins have holes all around for drainage and aeration. We harvested the first finished compost to add to the chili nursery.
The second major success we have enjoyed is the chilis. We started with 5 varieties including banana peppers, bird’s eye chilis, and purple, white, and green chilis. They thrive in the humidity and heat, and have been quite resilient against the pests this year. Aside form the regular use in Sri-Lankan cuisine, I have made a small batch of pickled kotchi for a wicked-hot condiment. (Recipe coming soon).
Finally, the carrots have done well despite the heat and less-than-ideal soil. Pictured at top is the first flowering shoot from which we will attempt to save some seeds. As our composting capacity increases, the soil will be improved for adding more carrots to the garden.