Caring for plants in your vertical garden - Part 1

GreenStalks gone crazy! After two weeks of rain it's time to get outside again, and I find my GreenStalks have gone nuts and need some serious maintenance. Follow along as I care for each of my towers to keep the plants producing at their best.

In Part 1 we have a tower with tomatoes, broccoli, kale sprouts, beans, and carrots (though the carrots are recently sown and barely visible) and we'll sow some radishes where we find empty pockets.

I'll prune out any dried or damaged leaves and prune excess foliage wherever appropriate. I want to keep a balance of enough leaves for the plant to thrive and produce their harvest - but not so much that the foliage hinders air circulation and sunlight to all levels of the planter. This is especially important when gardening vertically where a lot of plants share a small space. There is also no need for the plant to waste energy maintaining leaves beyond what it needs, once it's reached a good size and is nearing it's production stage.

I'll also check the broccoli and kale sprouts for eggs or caterpillars. This check I do almost every day! Like all plants in the brassica family they are attractive to a few species of butterflies and moths that lay eggs on the leaves (usually on the underside), and once hatched the hungry caterpillars can do a lot of damage really fast if not caught.

The tomato plant is getting big and heavier by the day as it fills up with tomatoes, and I needed to give it more support. Note that this tomato is NOT a dwarf/patio variety that would be the first recommendation in a GreenStalk vertical planter! This is a full size tomato that I had snipped off the top after four sets of real leaves, and later planted the rooted top in the GreenStalk.

I do this because I was already attached to this method - which my favorite Swedish blogger calls "beheading" tomatoes - before my GreenStalk days as it gives me shorter more compact plants that can be grown in smaller containers, than if they'd been left to grow normally. Even so, the resulting plant will grow taller than a dwarf variety, so if you are beginner please play it safe and choose a tomato variety suitable for growing in a 8-10 liter container.

In my case, I needed to provide this tomato with a second level of support. Tomatoes can be staked in a GreenStalk, or you can use a GreenStalk Plant Support. The Plant Support is assembled one section at a time and is designed to make one complete ring around the planter, but as it was only my tomato that needed support in this planter I found that it works just as well to only use sections as needed, and this way could provide support on two levels with just one support :) 

Visible in this reel are three tiers of GreenStalk Original size planters with a Spinner base and using one GreenStalk Plant Support.

Note: any tomato plant - even dwarf - as well as other plants that would not be suitable in a 4 liter container but could be grown in 8-10 liters, can be a grown in a GreenStalk Original by allowing it two whole pockets instead of one.
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