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Gardening Thread 2020

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posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:28 AM
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I think this year, with everything going on, it's a good time to bring back the gardening thread.
It's fun and educational to read everyone's tips and tricks.
Some here know, I'm a big canner. Not something a lot of people do anymore, but so worth the effort.
So, I always put in a big garden.
I'm doing things a little different this year. I've been hearing about how tomato plants, and so many other types, are being sold out. So I thought I would try starting from seed again.
I'm not gonna lie, I seem to have terrible luck, starting them in the house. They get about an inch or two, then die off. But, I'm giving it another go.
I've got Kale, and a couple tomato's popping up, so fingers crossed. Any advice is more than welcome. But I don't have a light to put on them, they are on a plant stand, in front of the back French door, that faces south, so lots of light. I've been spraying them lightly in the morning and at night, so they are just "damp".

Ok, as far as the actual garden.
Last year, despite all the rain, and ruined corn in the fields here in MI, my corn did great, better than the previous few years, and I was able to can almost 40 jars, so I won't be planting corn this year. It got me thinking I should change up how I garden. I'm going to switch up crops every other year. I always rotate, as far as where I put things, but this way I can focus on only a couple types of veggies, so I don't feel so overwhelmed when canning this fall.
So I will be planting Tomatoes, Peas, cabbage, peppers, carrots and kale. Maybe a few other things like lettuce, just for eating during the summer.

I had a problem with blight last year, so I have thick black plastic over the garden, to heat up the soil, as it is supposed to kill it. I don't actually start planting in the garden until Memorial weekend, so I'm hoping that is enough time.
The ground has been prepped all winter, with fertilizer, as that is where I dump all the poop, when cleaning out the chicken coop. I starting putting it in a pile for the next year, about February.
One thing I really enjoy, before the garden gets planted, is watching hubby rototill for me, pre planting (that's the extent of his gardening help all year, it has a motor! LOL)
While he is doing it, he looks like the pied piper, with all the chickens and ducks following him back and forth down the rows.

So, what are your tips and tricks? Are you doing anything different this year, with all the craziness?
Here is one tip, that works great for me, for my tomato's.

I've shared it before, but for those that haven't seen it, it works so great. They are 20' cattle panels, from TSC. We put stakes in the ground, push it up, then put stakes on the other side to hold it up. I will make a tunnel out of them, then plant the tomato's right up close, then "weave" them through as they grow. It holds them up nicely, is easy to weed around, and makes harvesting easier.




posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:33 AM
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Excellent idea OP, star and flag. We all need to be more self sufficient these days.


I would like to add that its also a good idea to have an area (if you can) to compost food waste. Makes for excellent nutrients for whatever you're growing. Also, if you see any earth worms, throw them in the soil with your plants.
edit on 10-4-2020 by QBSneak000 because: addition



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:34 AM
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I just realized how old this pic is!

We now have 5' dog fence with posts, all the way around the garden, with a separate, temp fence inside, as it is the chicken run too.
Oh, and that is another great thing. Cleanup in the fall is so much easier, when you just let the birds in there. They tear everything up!



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:36 AM
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a reply to: QBSneak000

Yeah, the compost pile with food would be great, but I have to find a spot the chickens can't get to. They get most of our scraps right now.



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:42 AM
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To the OP. I think your tomato arch is spot on.

I grow chillies, tomatoes and cucumbers in the greenhouse, alongside garlic, runner beans, courgettes and similar low-maintenance things in the garden. We also have some apple and plum trees, and some gooseberry bushes, alongside a productive rhubarb clump.

My wife and I also pick wild food - blackberries, damsons and sloes for gin.

Not in anyway self sufficient, but my surplus chillies go down well at work!



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:44 AM
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a reply to: chiefsmom

Thank you SO much for starting this thread and I will add a ton as I go when I can!

The arches or hoops you are using for tomatoes?

Grow climbers there as well... especially cucumbers.

They will grow to the top of the arch and the fruit will hang down under...

You end up getting a cucumber cave!






posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:45 AM
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Hi chiefsmom!
Great thread, I'm always down for tips and tricks! I was actually only planning on doing a small garden this year- I was supposed to be super busy and didn't think I would have the time lol.
Right now I just have tomatoes, leeks, blackberries, and some herbs and small fruit trees. Fingers crossed!
All my life I've wanted to can but never took the time to learn! I will be here plying you with newbie questions I'm sure!



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:46 AM
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a reply to: paraphi

I would love to plant more fruit trees, but unfortunately they tend to bring the racoons, who then decide to make a meal of my chickens, so I just get by with my neighbors apple trees. I can some great applesauce with those though.



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:49 AM
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a reply to: Lumenari

Arches, and I always plant a cucumber at the end, and while they do well climbing, they never looked like that!

I'm hoping to keep up with this thread through harvest, and see how everyone does!



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:53 AM
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a reply to: chiefsmom

I was thinking of starting a thread like this because I wanted to talk about things like the process of making your own carrot seed, etc... full-on self-sufficient gardening without having to ever buy seeds again.

But I'm bumping out my garden right now and the greenhouse is full and I'm busy...

So I'm tickled that you made a thread I can just add to as I go.




posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:53 AM
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a reply to: Starcrossd

Even a small one can be so rewarding. It really is amazing how different things taste, right out of the garden. And ask away, I never thought I would enjoy canning so much, and it will take up a whole day, depending on what you are doing. But opening a can of corn, in Feb? It just tastes so good!
But I do meat too, and since it is just hubby and I now at home, it is so convenient, to just open a jar and heat it up.
Plus I love seeing my shelves full. LOL



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 10:56 AM
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a reply to: Lumenari

See, that is the type of things I want to learn, harvesting my own.

I did do it with peppers from last year, as my neighbor has pepper plants from all over the world, and gave me some. But something like carrots?
Teach me! LOL



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 11:04 AM
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a reply to: chiefsmom

Just uncovered my containers on the patio. Temps dipped into the high 30s last night and will again tonight. I just push the containers close together and cover them with old bed sheets. Hard to believe the temp was in the 80s a few days ago!

All of my seeds have sprouted except the cantaloupe and the few bedding plants I was able to find are growing like crazy. My mission this weekend is to find some wire to act as a trellis for the beans and cucumbers, but if I can't find any I will just go "old school" like when I was growing up and string fabric scraps, old pantyhose, etc. for them to climb up.

I don't grow enough for canning (lack of space) but grew up doing so. I think canning is making a big comeback this year now that people are starting to realize they need to be more self sufficient!



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 11:29 AM
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a reply to: GeauxHomeYoureDrunk

Well, if you have to go old school, I would love to see a picture of it, how it works!

I remember when I first started canning with the pressure cooker, and EVERYONE had a horror story, about the top blowing off.
Funny, that not one of those people said, you just have to make sure you have plenty of water in it.
And keep an ear on it.
Knock on wood, never had a problem.
But I always add extra water, to be sure.



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 01:32 PM
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Been digging more of my pond today.

I can hardly type because I'm knackered and siezing up.

Going to fill it from my well and rig up an irrigation system from the pond pump for the veggies which I want on solar power.

Whew!



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 01:50 PM
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a reply to: nerbot

Sounds like a fun, but hard project. I would love to see pics, when you get it done!



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 02:23 PM
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a reply to: chiefsmom

I used to have my own allotment but had to give it up for various reasons a couple of years ago.
I regret doing so and really wish I'd struggled through until such time as now when I could resume giving it the attention it deserves.

I grew onions, garlic, potatoes, turnip, peas, beans, tomatoes, sweet corn, cabbage and loveage and various other herbs.

I tried growing carrots but for some reason hardly anyone was successful growing these on the allotment site.

As a result I really got into composting at the same time and literally everything went into the composter.

I had plans to start growing chilli's and possibly experiment with some other fruits and vegetables but unfortunately circumstances prevented it.

I might put my name down for another allotment but there tends to be a long waiting list which I suspect might get longer after this outbreak is all over.

Great thread and I'll keep popping in for updates and tips.



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 03:07 PM
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Avid Gardener!



-Mus



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 04:19 PM
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a reply to: Freeborn

Well, I really hope you can start again!

@ Muslickz: Your cabbages look amazing? Do the heads still get big, being planted so close to each other? That would save a lot of space, as I usually do a whole row of them.
I like to make my own Sauerkraut, and then can it.

And what are those plants, in front of the tomato's?
edit on 10-4-2020 by chiefsmom because: additional question



posted on Apr, 10 2020 @ 05:16 PM
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I need tips on an irrigation system, anyone have knowledge?

Either a slow drip system or a micro sprinkler system, which is better for the plants or is it purely a technical consideration?

I probably won't have any timer for this to begin with so I'd either fill a high up cistern of a certain volume and let gravity do it's thing for a drip system, or turn on a valve in the future pond pump circuit and let the sprinklers work for a set time.

Currently I have 4 raised beds each about 10 x 4 feet and a few pots, planters, fruit bushes etc and more beds put in the ground.

My well water will be used and it's beautiful to drink and needs no real filtering as it's filtered through limestone rock. The water isn't deep because I am near the base of a bowl in the terrain. Double good eh? The only drawback is a little flooding in the wet season but a trench has been dug to divert to a culvert that takes it away to lower land under a road.

Currently have a waving sprinkler that covers everything (very good pump) but isn't that controllable.

Any help would be appreciated so I don't kill my hard work if I am not around or miss a watering.

Cheers.
edit on 10/4/2020 by nerbot because: (no reason given)



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