Here's something new for FarmCity! Edible, living walls!
One of our local credit unions invited us to make a proposal for a green wall, so of course, it had to be an edible one, if it was going to come from FarmCity! It's an elegant, attractive solution for people with very small spaces on balconies or tiny townhouse yards - it takes up hardly any space, but provides lots of food.
We planted this one for a semi-shaded spot, with some edible flowers (pansy and marigold), herbs such as oregano, sage and peppermint, and a variety of lettuces and other greens. The greens can be harvested, like the herbs, by picking individual leaves, while leaving the plants growing - and the flowers can be deadheaded, so they keep blooming, too. That way, the wall looks attractive for a long time.
For a sunnier location, the plants could include strawberries, bush beans, small herbs, and bee-friendly flowering plants. And for ourselves, we've long intended to make a mushroom-growing wall in the shade by a side fence: we've got oyster mushrooms growing in a cardboard box at the moment, and will put their spores on a medium of wood chips and chicken straw, in the edible wall.
Watering the wall is very easy: you pour water into reservoirs at the top (hidden behind the top piece of wood), from which the water is slowly wicked down to each succeeding row. The plants are watered from the inside out, as it were, so that no soil erosion or movement can occur. When installing such a wall, it is easy to ensure that the surface of the building or home on which it is installed is well protected from an water damage.
This particular green wall technology also makes replanting the wall each spring a very easy process: just grow or buy suitable bedding plants in small 2- or 3-inch pots, and plant them in the cells!
Entirely self-contained, it can be easily and quickly attached to any exterior wall. Its modular character allows for just about any size and dimension of green wall to be made - though in the case of an edible wall, you probably want it to remain small enough to be easily harvested!