It was the abundant strawberries, spilling over the sides of hanging rain gutters that caught my attention. The photo was from Homestead Survival’s Facebook photo stream.
I wanted to know more so followed that link to a Web site. Homestead Survival took me back to my city-dweller-turned-farmer days, when I read Mother Earth News with as much interest as I had previously devoured the New York Times.
I’m a city dweller once again, but a piece of my heart got stuck in the country. So I followed links that led from the strawberry garden to a blog post on hanging gutter gardens.
That led me to Nest in Style and instructions for building a hanging gutter garden. Photographs and text showed all the materials needed and the steps in constructing them, along with suggestions for edible crops that thrive in them. Jayme Jenkins, the person behind Nest in Style, posted updated instructions on her Facebook page.
I’m clearly slow to catch on to rain gutter gardens. They are not all hanging, as you can see in these three videos: An apartment balcony gardener built the rain gutters into stands. José Luis Castañeda installed a larger rooftop garden in Guadalajara Mexico and posted photographs of his techniques and his thriving rain gutter beds. Another rain gutter enthusiast made a video of his critter-proof, desert-garden cage and his lush harvest.
Thanks to Cathy Richards and Carol Lynn for posting the initial link on Facebook and for sparking my imagination. The world of gardening is a truly wondrous place. Seeing all the options for growing food in virtually any space gives me hope.[Fair warning. If you follow links on the above sites, you might get sidetracked by the schoolbus turned into a camper van or the tin cans turned into wall sconces and picture frames. I warned you.]