People sometimes ask how we are able to grow so much food in such a small space. Well, there are many things that contribute to our “success” if you can call it that.   Besides utilizing planting successions and proper management,one method used is “multi-level” plantings as shown in the photo. Here we have tomatoes that are grown in earthboxes and for the understory we sow lettuce. This helps shade the lettuce from the sun and also provides a living, “green mulch” for the tomato.

Multi-level gardening
We also use this method extensively in our raised beds. For instance, our pepper, eggplant, cucumber and corn beds are undersown with mustards, arugula and other salad greens.   So, in one bed we are able to harvest pepperand a green crop. We also plant closer than the recommend planting  distance for plants. In nature plants aren’t planted in neat little rows or so many inches apart.   So, how close do we plant the plants?   Well, it’s more like trial and error…. Closer, closer, closer… whoops, too close!

On another subject, the ducks are starting to try out their vocal cords and attempt quacking, if you can call it that! It sounds more like a foghorn that’s been clogged, hopefully they’ll get the loveable “quack” sound down soon.

POSTSCRIPT: Don’t forget to check out our MAY NEWSLETTER. Enjoy!

Weather Report: Cooler!

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  1. Kristen says:

    I’m trying to grow veggies on my balcony. I’ve got planters but was wondering about your multilevel gardening. What kind of spacing do you use for lettuce and tomatoes? Or your other raised beds, I know that this will be too late for this year but definitely next year it will come in handy. Right now I have grow boxes from If you have any advice for vine veggies it would be appreciated (peas both sugar and snow, green beans, etc) I want to be able to grow as much as possible. Obviously don’t have the space you do, but in a couple years looking to get a house. The balcony will have to do for now. It is mostly sunny until 4pm when the shade comes, although the spring and fall get more sun I guess because of the rotation.

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