Me and my wife have been vegetarian for over a decade now. (Oh! By the way you can find her blog here : http://maryleemaynard.tumblr.com/)
And we also happen to live a Major city (oh! lovely, lovely Montreal). I like nature and trees and lakes and all, but I also enjoy urban life very much which causes a certain problem that contradicts my/our environmental values. We take the bus as much as possible and Mary likes to bike (I’ll be honest, I won’t ride a bike) but having a garden is something we’ve always wanted.
Problem is : We can’t afford to buy our own house or duplex, we don’t have a backyard but what we DO have is a balcony which we wanted to used to its full potential. We (unfortunately) don’t have access to our roof as most rich (and gentrifying) people now do.
We also wanted to use recycled materials as much as possible. So the first three (white) buckets were actually cat litter boxes we kept to grow tomatoes in. We had an extra recycling bin which we converted as a garden pot and a bunch of plastic containers we didn’t need anymore so we just filled them with black soil.
Being on the third floor, we have a lot (a lot) of sun. Which is nice (and I can’t complain) but with the utter absence of trees and such, our kitchen just turns into a oven. So we planned to grow a vine into the green bin and it will hopefully block some of the sun and therefore naturally cool down our home.
We also have one of these super old sheds wich is useful (and I like the ramshackle look) but the tin walls reflect sunlight and again, cooks up our kitchen. That’s a problem.
So the plan is to drill in some hooks and fill the wall with suspended plants, hopefully cutting the reflection and heat from the sun.Also, we will have some green plants to look at instead of a grey walls.
In the end, we might not save a lot on food but if we manage to naturally cool down our apartment, plus add some green to the alley we live in, we’ll have achieved our goal.
Of course we’d like to have access to our roof and turn it into a “Green roof” but as we are not rich enough to do that, we do what we can when the opportunity is there.
That’s pretty much it for now,
Oh! and if you have a minute, buy my novel on kindle (click on the cover):