To Garden or Not to Garden?

We all know that growing your own food is the best way to know where it actually comes from and is cost-efficient to boot.  However, living in the city makes it a tiny bit difficult to actually have a garden.  I know that container gardening can be done and we do have some space on our fire escape, but Brooklyn squirrels are an intense breed and managed to turn me off to attempting anything edible outdoors.  Does anybody out there (specifically in urban areas) have good ideas on preventing squirrel theft or things besides herbs you can grow easily indoors – with limited space?


15 Comments on “To Garden or Not to Garden?”

  1. Rebecca says:

    I read yesterday about Salad bowls (can’t find the link now)–but it was a bowl planted with up to 12 plants. They were designed to be kept inside. I’m…thinking about it. Lettuce grows fairly quickly and doesn’t need a lot of sun.

  2. seth says:

    beware of the 64$ tomato syndrome… i agree greens are easy to grow, and they are happier in low light, takes them longer to go to seed.

  3. gl. says:

    windowfarms? with roots (ha ha) in nyc!

  4. Linda says:

    We have thieving obnoxious squirrels too! I am gonna try the potatoes grow in a bag or bucket this year. Homegrown potatoes are awesome.

  5. cooksalliance says:

    Hey Tina, I found a site that is talking about this very subject and I had to come give you the site. I hope this helps!


  6. susan says:

    i left the upper west side for pennsylvania and have a huge garden…BUT NO CITY…i think all the green markets and great stores like fairway (and the co-op) and the greens in chinatown make it so cost worthy to purchase rather than try to grow on a fire escape…maybe a pot of basil or something but most times the stuff at the greenmarket is so gorgeous and fresh (and not expensive…go to 14th street when they are wrapping up)…
    i have also heard of many rats at community gardens…yuk

  7. cooksalliance says:

    Oh by the way I finally made the homemade vanilla pudding and had to come by to tell you.

    Hugs, Dee~

  8. tinaspins says:

    I am loving these comments!

    @seth, tell me about it, we spent a bit on our garden a few years back and I was pissed that the squirrels ate the bounty
    @dee, congrats on the pudding and thanks for that link!

    I found this intriguing link about keeping squirrels away using…blood (

  9. cooksalliance says:

    wow thanks and what a good idea for keeping the rodents out of the containers. I am waiting just a bit longer to plant since its been usually cold and rainy this year. But this payday I am going to the garden store to get the stuff and get started. Thanks a million.


  10. mary says:

    The Urban Homestead: Your Guide to Self-sufficient Living in the Heart of the City is an amazing resource for this. They have all kinds of idea for growing indoors or using the little outdoor space you have efficiently.

    • tinaspins says:

      We have the Urban Homestead and used it as a resource when we last did our garden. Unfortunately, the squirrels were still a problem.

      I am thinking we’ll definitely do some herbs and then perhaps radishes and baby tomatoes and lettuce.

  11. jamie says:

    I would think that you could easily grow things like radishes, carrots, turnips, etc. indoors. As long as you gave them plenty of sunlight and plenty of space to grow. You could use the tops for salad as well.

  12. Sandy says:

    The how to make a salad bowl video is here:

  13. cate says:

    You should check this out…basically you grow plants actually inside bottles (not just using bottles as planters). it can apparently all be done inside. Even though I’m lucky enough to have a decent sized balcony garden I want to try this

    • tinaspins says:

      My friend just sent me an NPR report on that! It looks intriguing – I would have to figure out where we could put one.

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