Sheila Fairley (Toronto) - Tied for First Place!

This photo was taken in my backyard. I am a very tentative gardener, a beginner spinner and felt maker and a serious tea drinker. So here you have lemon balm for tea planted in a container I made from felt from the fleece of a Romni sheep decorated with hand spun yarn. One unexpected consequence of using a felt planter is that when the plant gets dry the container is so light it falls over in the slightest breeze, alerting the inexperienced gardener that it is time to water the lemon balm!

Prize: Gift certificate from Sheridan Nurseries



Zora Ignjatovic (Toronto) - Tied for First Place!

This is a very special container showing that some plants are resilient more than we can comprehend. People might recognize that this container was part of the 2009 Edible Container Garden Contest. After the show, I brought it to the Carrot Green Roof and it stayed there since. The mint plant survived and thrived to my surprise and delight. No maintenance required! Bravo mint, bravo container gardening!

Prize: Fiskars - 3 tools



Andrea Vaughan (Toronto) - Second Place!

My “shoebag” garden, grown in Scarborough. The entire bag on the left is strawberries. The right bag has red onions in the top row, hot cherry peppers and sweet basil (2 of each) in the 2nd row, celery in the 3rd row, sugar baby melons in the 4th (lol don’t ask me why) and the bottom row is radishes.

Prize: One free session of the 2012 Urban Vegetable Gardening series at the Toronto Botanical Garden



Sara Wicks (Guelph) - Third Place!

The garden is on the rooftop of my apartment in Guelph and every container is recycled by either being found in the trash, friends’ garages or donated to my cause. This is a picture of my whole roof mid-summer. The containers are of found plastics and of old orchard boxes from Ignatius Organic Farm in Guelph that were going to be burned because they were no longer strong enough to hold apples. In the boxes are cucumbers and garlic. In the other containers are beets and mixed spicy greens. I am also pleased to say that every plant in the roof top garden is edible.

A personal thanks to Gayla Trail for her amazing books that I have adopted as my new garden bible and used as my inspiration for this entire project.

Prize: Heirloom Seed Collection from The Cottage Gardener and Root Pouch growing kit from Access Alliance Green Roof




Bina Mittal on behalf of her children (Toronto)

This is my children's first efforts to container garden, growing carrots, peas, beans and tomatoes, all from seed.

Kwynton, age 8, helped his father build the cedar raised garden bed. Zennin, 11 years old, sowed the seeds. Teighan, 13 years old, took the pictures of our family.

Prize: Signed copy of No Guff Vegetable Gardening by Donna Balzer and Steven Biggs



Bonnie Bartlett (Toronto)

I picked up drawers from dressers on the side of the road and filled ‘em with dirt! On display is some mint gone wild as well as some lemon balm.

Prize: Gift certificate from Veseys and An Illustrated Guide to Growing Food on Your Balcony by Lara Lucretia Mrosovsky



Chavisa Brett on behalf of South Riverdale Community Health Centre’s Garden Group

The garden group at South Riverdale Community Health Centre actively maintains a 4th floor rooftop garden. The cedar containers in these photos were built by community members and staff eight years ago. We maintain an extensive range of herbs, indigenous plants and vegetables that provide fresh produce for our lunch each week. Moreover, we source plants from our garden suitable for herbal workshops. We are learning to make teas, creams, balms and vinegars to enhance health. This garden has supported the development of a tightly knit group of community members who benefit from social interaction and the opportunity to share a meal together while developing their gardening and cooking skills. Each week we prepare a new recipe from food grown in the garden. Participants often try new foods they are unfamiliar with. Gardening provides an opportunity to be active while experiencing nature in an urban setting.

Prize: Gift certificate from Bill’s Garden Centre


Homa Kameh (Toronto)

This picture was taken on our balcony in downtown Toronto. My herb basket includes Basil, Coriander and Ornamental Pepper. I started planting them in August and the compact garden has been a source of hope for me and good laughter for my family! The basket and its lining are all recycled material and I "borrowed" Coriander seeds and Basil seedlings from The STOP. Besides being a beautiful addition to our balcony, I love the refreshing scent that reminds me of simplicity and peace in life.

Prize: From Renee's Garden More Recipes From A Kitchen Garden and gift certificate from Veseys



Micah Donovan (Toronto)

My submission includes container garden designs I made. The one pictured here was for Subtle Technologies, to prove that if one could grow food in a movie theatre one could grow food anywhere (hanging off a 'balcony' inside Innis Town Hall, University of Toronto). The others are at Evergreen Brick Works, where staff grow food in their reception area. These containers work outside on balconies with natural light, in windows, or indoors with LEDs. 

Prize: Gift certificate from Lee Valley Tools




Nazmul Alam (Toronto)

Rice in pot. In my apartment (I don’t have a balcony now).

Prize: Incredible Edibles by Sonia Day and gift certificate from Veseys



Nicholas Potovsky for Rye’s HomeGrown community garden project at Ryerson University (Toronto)

We planted in an existing planter that borders Ryerson's Kerr Hall on Gould Street in the heart of the Ryerson University campus. Most of the materials that we used to build our garden were salvaged from the architecture building at Ryerson. The wood that we used to make trellises and public furniture came from old trim and light valences and the self-watering planters that we lined the site with were made from the bases of old concrete benches. We had great success growing a wide range of crops including five experimental world crops (callaloo, Asian eggplant, Chinese hot peppers, okra and yard-long beans) and have donated our fresh, delicious, organic harvests to the Ryerson Students Food Room—a food bank for Ryerson students facing financial difficulties. Best of all, if all goes well, we're going to expand! We've had huge support for our little project that has taken the idea of growing in containers and small spaces and exposed it to the tens of thousands of people who passed by this summer.

Prize: Renee's Garden Container Kitchen Garden and Rainbow Kitchen Garden seed packets and multiple copies of An Illustrated Guide to Growing Food on Your Balcony by Lara Lucretia Mrosovsky