Joan Collins THE organistion Amics de la Terra are trying to promote so-called “edible balconies”, an activity which is gaining popularity in large cities such as New York, which consists of making a small kitchen garden on the balcony of a house or flat. This non governmental organisation, which has worked on Majorca for more than 10 years, said that they are trying to introduce, in collaboration with the Son Serra College, this “particular form of cultivation” on the islands. This initiative will allow people to eat healthily and save on the buying of products which are most expensive. The “edible balconies” consist of containers approximately 80cm high with an area of 1.4 metres by 40cm, filled with soil which has a layer of fertiliser in it, in which such things as tomatoes, lettuces, radishes and chard can be planted. According to the Amics de la Terra expert, Manuel Font, they are also organising various courses in composting during the month of May in council offices throughout Majorca for those councils who have asked for this, through an agreement with the Council of Majorca, with the aim of promoting the best ways of using domestic organic waste. Councils will offer these courses free, giving residents the containers to use for this activity. For this purpose, Font said, councils such as Manacor council have bought 40 containers, or 25 in the case of Soller, followed by an extensive list of other councils who are enthusiastic about this initiative. “It is a shame that others, like Andratx council, are ignoring this initiative”, he added. Also, the association recommends monitoring the state of the compost, made from organic materials both dry and wet, so that it doesn't smell, producing a fertiliser for high quality plants. According to Font, the initiative is receiving such a take-up rate by councils and residents that some towns have already rented grinders to speed up the composting process. This system of recycling could also be done efficiently in towns by installing small containers on the balconies, called worm composters, which do the same thing.