Okay, so before I go any further, I thought I would explain our ugly—and yet beautiful (I just love green, growing things)…container garden. You see, when we moved to an apartment, we wanted to continue our vegetable gardening. And yet, that many good-quality (of an appropriate size) containers, that we may or may not use for more than one or two years didn't seem like a sound financial investment. And so, I made a foray over to Garden Web home of all things garden (including about a billion message boards) and took a look at how other people do it.
I found this one person with an absolutely astounding 5-gallon bucket garden. This thing was massive. And, according to everything people said, the size was just about right for…say…a tomato plant. Aha! Looks like a job for Freecycle, we thought to ourselves. Several posts later, and voila. There you have it. And yes, those are old kitty litter buckets holding the pepper and tomato. Conveniently enough, when I explained what we wanted the buckets for, we had some offerings of old plant pots as well. and that, folks, is where the hanging baskets came from.
For potting soil, we have packing peanuts in the bottom (not biodegradable cause that would, in fact, kind of defeat the point…) to lighten the pots, since it is, after all a balcony and we were worried about how many heavy wet-dirt-filled buckets it could hold. And we put both potting soil we had from a while ago, old, recycled potting soil—this stuff is great— as well as some "garden soil" with manure picked up at home depot… and boy does that stuff stink. Anyways, there you are. We shall see how it goes.