Flowers that need very less space

Hyderabad, India(Zone 12b)

Hi friends.I am having this asbestos sheet (looks like a seedbed).I want to grow flowering plants in this very tiny space.Can you suggest me one?.

Thumbnail by burraganesh
Durhamville, NY(Zone 5b)

We really need more information. I looked up your climate on this site:

This is what it said.

Hyderabad has typically a hot climate with the temperature exceeding 40 C in the summers. Winters are, however, mild and more tolerable. The maximum temperature in summers is somewhat between 40 C and 43 C. In the month of winters it is between 20 C to 24 C. The mercury may lower down to its minimum of 13 C in the month of December. South west monsoons sets in from June to September. There is plenty of rainfall during this period and accompanied by high humidity. The same is quite low during winter months.

Another site shows the current conditions as 88 degrees F and 35% relative humidity.

We also need to know if the location is in the sun or shade.

To me it looks like, if that setup is in the sun against a concrete wall, only the most heat tolerant plnts will make it. The soil looks too shallow and I wonder how fertile it is. It looks like sand to me. Why are you using that sheet of material instead of some kind of deeper container?

The best source of ideas will be to look around to see what is growing around you. There are very few if any places in the US that match your climate.

Hyderabad, India(Zone 12b)

First initially I want to see seedlings separated by 10 inch gap in between and then I will surround them with two bricks on top of sheet followed by adding more potting mix.See the picture of my model.Red one is bricks say and green dots is plants.Thus it will be equivalent to 8 inch deep X 6 inch wide pot.

Please suggest me small plants that produce nice flowers.I think French Dwarf marigold can grow in this limited space.

Thumbnail by burraganesh
Prairieville, LA(Zone 9a)

The first thing that comes to mind is herbs.

Here are some other suggestions

Here is a list of sedums, grasses and other plants that would work in those conditions

Hyderabad, India(Zone 12b)

Man moonhowl this info is very useful.Thanks a lot.

Prairieville, LA(Zone 9a)

You are very welcome Ganesh. Glad it helps.


Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

Hi Ganesh, I live in UK and we have the very opposite to your climate so to start with, I have to take my hat of to you for your ideas, your stubborn nature and your love of self sufficiency, I hope you manage to get a small area to grow the flowers you love best.

I can tell you they Asbestos is very dangerous indeed, all the others have warned you re the safest way to handle it IF it turns out to be this stuff.
Ecrane is correct when she said Asbestos is NOT banned in India but, the government there do actually know the dangers of this and the effect it has on people who work, live or come into contact with it in their daily life.
Here in UK the rules are, IF the asbestos IS covered (Painted, locked away from public, not in open Air spaces etc) you must leave it alone but report it's where-a-bouts to authority to check it's safety, if you have to work close to or remove it for alteration to property etc, you by law have to hire a special company who has the correct paperwork to say they can remove and dispose of the asbestos in complete safety.

We have friends who are just home from 2 years working out in India and believe me, from Pictures they show us, you are very lucky to be able to find space, tools and seeds to be able to grow your flowers, however I am sure your country will be as diverse as ours and many more when it comes to farming, gardening, availability of garden space etc, but I wish you the best of luck and PLEASE have your corrugated sheeting checked out to find what it actually is made of, to catch the lung disease of Asbestoses is dreadful and it does not show any effects for a number of years, Here in UK there are generations of families who have suffered from this due to their industrial ties and living conditions as a direct result of working with Asbestos.
Wishing you much luck and happy gardening. WeeNel.

Hyderabad, India(Zone 12b)

Hi weenel, I am sure it is asbestos.Because when I intentionally scraped the edge I could see fibers in the Cement.But soon I seal the edges with cement or clay.Previously I used to grow Cilantro in it for home needs.But when I came to know its dangers I stopped growing any edible item in it.Now I just sowed seeds of French dwarf Marigold.Waiting for it to sprout.I hope there should be atleast 10 of it's plants with nice flowers withing 3 months.

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

Ganesh. The problems stem from the asbestos fibers which could have been released when you scraped the side.

There is a DG forum on Hypertufa and concrete. Both of these can be used to make containers and grow plants in. Items such as plants, boxes, styrofoam shipping containers, shaped sand, and plastic containers can be used as a mold for the container. Here are some examples from Google.

See this forum for more info.

Hyderabad, India(Zone 12b)

I'd coat the sides with concrete then forming a huge rectangular pot like structure.Then I will make 4 compartments with bricks.

Tampa, FL(Zone 10a)

Ganesh, You may have a piece of fiber glass roofing, not asbestos.

Asbestos fibers are very difficult to see with out magnification, unless you are 15 years old (that is the age we have our best vision).

Fiberglass, at a broken edge will show a criss cross pattern (fibers will appear to lay across each other in many directions).

Thumbnail by DaleTheGardener
Brighton, MI(Zone 5b)

Hello Ganesh. Everyone has given you some good advice so far and I agree with Dale that this is probably fiberglass. On the off chance it is asbestos, as long as you don't intend to cut it, the risk is minimal. Although fiberglass particles have pretty much the same effect on the lungs, so always use a mask with it too when cutting or handling insulation, etc. You can seal the edges as you mentioned if you're concerned. A thin layer of silicone or epoxy would work well. I'm sure you'd like to keep costs to a minimum, so check pricing and sales first. You might come up with some other ideas, I just thought I'd throw those out there.
Good luck with your project.

Hyderabad, India(Zone 12b)

Thank you ironworker.I would coat it with thick cowdung or cement.And tell me if at all asbestos is absorbed through plant roots?. For that instance does any other toxic compund(s) get absorbed through the plants and cause illness when we consume their fruit / vegetable (Edible plants) ?.

Already about 10 Marigold babies have sprouted in that roof.I intend to use flowers for decorative purpose (not for consumption at all).

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

DDT and Arsenic are a couple of chemicals that can be absorbed by plants and cause illness when the plants are eated.

Brighton, MI(Zone 5b)

Susan is right Ganesh. Anything present in water or in the soil is going to be absorbed. The asbestos fibers are small but I wouldn't be concerned about those in flowers or inedibles. I wouldn't recommend ingestion of the stuff, but asbestos is MOST dangerous when inhaled. The fibers can't be broken down by the body and that's the problem. They pierce the alveoli (air sacs) in the lungs, preventing oxygen exchange in that sac. When enough are damaged...asbestosis.
As for any other chemicals in the sheet, hard to say. I would just grow food items in another starter bed if you're worried.
FYI: The gov't knew of the dangers of asbestos in the 50's but allowed its use without warnings of the dangers until the 70's. Now, in the steam generating power plants and steel mills where this stuff is still widely used...they put neat little red warning stickers in the areas where its at so now we KNOW when we're being exposed! We've come a long way.

Hyderabad, India(Zone 12b)

This technology is ruining the planet actually.

I've seen the movie "The day the world stood still". I feel it's theme is 100% true.
Anyway thanks for all your concerns on Asbestos.Only knowledge like this can wipe out ignorance.

Brighton, MI(Zone 5b)

I must admit Ganesh that there are times that I wish that I could "unlearn" some of this stuff and that "ignorance truly is bliss"! Working in these places you knew that asbestos and lead went with the territory. It wasn't until 10 years ago (after I'd already been in for almost 15) that we started learning about the evils of cadmium (paints,etc.), silica, welding fumes (welders' parkinson's), and the damage fiberglass did to the lungs, to name a few.
Although, the zinc cold remedies that others pay for, I was getting from the galvanized coatings I was welding and cutting on. Never got a cold while working with that stuff, but zinc poisoning makes you feel like you're going to die!
You take the good with the bad in this life.

Prairieville, LA(Zone 9a)

What do they say? We learn as we go...sometimes too late.

Hyderabad, India(Zone 12b)

Yes friends, man can only imitate nature with artificial Sea-gulls, artificial plastic flowers.But that's all he can do.The God has created it and it is only his.Sometimes I feel intelligence is the curse of man, with his sheer, intelligence(actually cunningness) and half-knowledge and so called showy technology he is ruining the world.He is suffering and making other creatures suffer.In good old traditional / truly religious days our ancestors had put so many regulations / rules probably because they had complete knowledge (and they don't have any cameras or microscopes or satellites...they were utilising their BRAIN and INTUITION).

Remember half knowledge is dangerous and Curiosity always killed the Cat!

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