Urban gardening & a bike

I got a bike today! $29 on Craigslist. It's not the best bike ever but it will do. Denver has awesome bike trails, where you can ride through most of it without hardly ever sharing the road with cars. The trail runs by our place, right across the street, so it's very convenient. It's really beautiful and peaceful on the trail, with trees, a stream along some sections, and all bikers, runners and walkers. Today we biked about 7 miles total, and made a stop at Whole Foods to pick up some things. Can't wait to do more biking! It's a great way to exercise and relieve stress, I've found.

My first batch of plants
I am also taking up gardening! It's something I've been wanting to do ever since we moved to Ohio, but kept putting off because I wanted to do it when we got our own permanent place. But I'm realizing I don't know when that will happen, so I might as well start now. It is a big learning curve, for sure (I've already killed some of the plants pictured above). I picked up this book from the library, and got some tips:

The book gives advice on how to create a garden in a small space like a patio or balcony. We actually have a pretty large balcony so I'm hoping to set it up so we can enjoy some nice evenings out on it, reading, eating or sipping tea there. I haven't put any of the plants out there yet because the weather's been up and down, but in a few weeks I will put them out. My goal this week is to get some patio furniture. I will keep you updated on the progress.

I was feeling a little overwhelmed about the whole gardening thing after my initial excitement (and the death of some of my plants after a few weeks), but got re-inspired by two things this week. First, my friend Allison's garden. I got some helpful tips from her via skype this week too. Here's a photo of her garden:

Image: Kinda' Vegan (Allison's blog)

I love that much of her garden is edible. Also, I've seen this space, and it's super tiny - so I love what she's done with it.

The second source of inspiration was a post I came across on Apartment Therapy.

Image: Apartment Therapy
This is the balcony garden of a couple who lives in a regular old apartment complex. Isn't that amazing?

My balcony faces north so it only gets about 2 hours of direct sun each day, in the late afternoon. It's also on the 8th floor and can get windy some days. Let me know if you have tips for my balcony garden!


  1. Good job, Bo! We've been giggling over our patio garden recently because we just moved a huge (for the amount of space there is) potted ficus onto it so the family in the apartment adjacent to us can't see straight into our dining room from their front door (awkward!).

    I don't have much of a green thumb but I enjoy caring for our plants. My advice is to look for the kind of plants that will naturally like the climate you're in. Every summer I stress over our fern getting too much sun! Finally got some baby succulents from a friend...makes so much more sense to have desert plants in a desert climate. Have fun and keep us posted!

    1. Charissa, thanks for the tips! I did get a jade and an aloe vera, and those seem to be doing the best so far. It's definitely dry here so they like that. I don't have a green thumb either - I was kind of kicking myself that I didn't start this project when my mom was here, because she's such a pro at this stuff. :)

  2. $29! sounds like a good deal! how nice to have access to a trail so close to home.

    glad you got re-inspired. i look forward to seeing what you do with your balcony :)

    1. We rode to the ice cream shop last night and I rode W's bike back, and realized his bike is SO much better than mine, and I felt much safer. I'm thinking about selling it and getting another one. We'll see.