The 2013 Garden Thread

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posted on Apr, 25 2013 @ 10:11 AM
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reply to post by shadow watcher
 


I share in your vexation and frustration since I read about this proposal yesterday. It must only be about control. *shrug* I hope it is laughed out. I can't imagine any of the EU countries have the budgets to pay inspectors to check backyards for gardens and then homeowners for vegetable licenses. Ridiculous. Total needless expenditure.

On the other hand, I have been to court for growing vegetables. I placed my very pretty grow boxes with their very pretty strawberry plants in my side yard three years ago and was cited by the city for my "eyesore". I live on a corner lot and my city has designated that, for corner lots, front yards and side yards must contain no more than 30% vegetable/fruit growing space, with the other 70% being lawn. I have fruit trees, so the additional strawberry grow boxes put me at 45% or some such. I did not win in court.




posted on Apr, 25 2013 @ 10:36 AM
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reply to post by Halekoch
 


You know I can't really remember what I did when I saved the pepper seeds - but I love the blender suggestion! Thanks for the tip. In truth I did a terrible job with all of my peppers last year. I planted them in the wrong spot and they were crowded out by the corn and the tomatoes. I never got many good sized peppers so I suspect they just weren't hearty overall.

I took a chance and put out all my good sized plants on my screened in porch for the day. It was 45 this morning and is now in the mid-fifties. The broccoli should be fine but I'm probably pushing it with the tomatoes. But like I said elsewhere I believe in tough love for my plants! I will let you know if I come home to a disaster later, in which case expect much wailing and gnashing of teeth.



posted on Apr, 30 2013 @ 07:26 PM
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Transplanted my broccoli seedlings this weekend. 17 plants. So far they are doing well.

Seeded some arugula I picked up on a whim. Also purchased three dill plants. I have given up on starting dill from seed. It never works for me. But I heard once you get a patch going it keeps reseeding itself.

Spinach, chard and lettuce are all doing well. The lettuce reseeded itself from last year so I've picked several container's worth so far. Picked one dinner's worth of chard. Expect to have baby spinach within the week and full leaf in two to three weeks.

Peas are rocking out. They're about two inches high. I should take pictures....



posted on May, 2 2013 @ 01:41 PM
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reply to post by otherpotato
 


I am so envious you can plant out already. I have three more weeks until I get to a 90% chance of no freezing temps, no snow. Speaking of, you have it together with planting out, but if anyone else needs it: NOAA's Freeze/Frost Ranges by City/State

I hope everything is doing well outside for you, especially the broccoli. This is my first year trying broccoli.



posted on May, 2 2013 @ 08:22 PM
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reply to post by Halekoch
 


What zone are you in? I'm in zone 5/6 and we start planting cool weather plants just after St. Patrick's Day. Peas, lettuce, onions, potatoes all can stand a light frost. Tomatoes and such don't go in until early May because they can't tolerate any frost.

In fact, when my parents used to manage the garden we never got good peas. Then I discovered we were planting too late. Get them in before the beginning of April and peas abound....



posted on May, 2 2013 @ 10:47 PM
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reply to post by otherpotato
 
I feel for you right now, the late cold temps might get those potatoes, hope they're covered with a warmth source. This has been a very unusual year freeze wise. I've had to replant my tomatoes two times already!

I'm in Austin, Zone 8. But even then I have a lot going on right now: Had lots of spinach and some has bolted due to several days of mid eighties to nineties heat, giant dill, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, onions, garlic from last fall, cucumber, green beans, yellow squash, egg plant, green velvet okra, key limes, meyers lemon, black berries, chamomile, lavender, pomegranate, thyme, oregano, rosemary, cantaloupes, blueberries, etc........

Don't feel envious 'cause the true heat hasn't hit here yet.......


In a few weeks all that will be left are the African origin veggies, all the others can't take the heat. Last year the tomatoes roasted on the vines, and everything other than the heat loving veggies couldn't take it.

And to make things more interesting we are going into the 30"s tomorrow night! What's that all about! I've been dealing with the eighties and now this? My garden is totally confused as am I!

To all the gardeners out there "Hold steady" we'll make it through!

STM
edit on 5/2/2013 by seentoomuch because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 2 2013 @ 11:33 PM
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reply to post by seentoomuch
 


Zone 8! I look forward to learning about your area. You can grow things I can't. Like lemon trees (sigh).

Up here in zone 5/6 things are a tad late but not by much. I feel comfortable direct sowing my beans. I'm going to wait until the hot spell to plant the tomatoes. Peppers need waay more time. I almost consider not doing peppers because they're a pain.

Potatoes need a very long growing season up here and take up a lot of space so I tried crowding them in containers. I got a good amount of small potatoes that way last year, not enough to store but good for the season. I haven't tried them in the ground yet. I heard they don't play nice with certain plants and I need more flexibility than that for my main plot!

I consider every year an experiment, and don't mind when I fail in one area because I usually end up succeeding in others. I love hearing about other people's gardening experiences and seem to think it's fascinating to other people when I talk about my own. I'm a gardening geek I guess. If there is such a thing. How did that happen?
edit on 2-5-2013 by otherpotato because: There must be some misunderstanding...



posted on May, 2 2013 @ 11:44 PM
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reply to post by otherpotato
 

Hi,
I would give my eye teeth for the soil you have in your zone 5/6. But I understand that there's a trade off in the length of growing season, so which is better? I have to amend mine to the inth degree (all organic of course) but still, I've heard you can just drop a seed in your area and it will grow no problem. Is that true? How deep is your top soil?
edit on 5/2/2013 by seentoomuch because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 12:00 AM
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reply to post by seentoomuch
 


It's....possibly true..... Once I figure out how to post pictures (yes, I am lame...) I will post my pictures from last year. I grew a 2 1/2 pound tomato that was 6 inches in diameter. It was epic.
edit on 3-5-2013 by otherpotato because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 12:14 AM
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Wow!
Congrats!!!


See, that's the difference between zones. I've only had large sized tomatoes here when I had a garden in filtered light from a peach tree, and that was back a few years before the drought. Now I'm in a different garden and am thinking of putting up shade sails in the latter part of the Spring to ease the sun's intenseness. We literally had sun roasted tomatoes on the vine last year. The skins thickened to protect them and they were inedible to all except the Mockingbirds. Now I'm dealing with volunteer tomato plants everywhere, even my neighbors say they're coming up in their flowerbeds, from the birds I guess.

Keep those potatoes warm for the night,

STM



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 11:30 AM
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reply to post by otherpotato
 


I'm in zone 5. I have my potatoes - purple and red - beans, peas, onions, scallions, romaine, and zucchini planted. Those just grow for me, very effortless. I concentrate on everything sitting on a 6' table under my picture window and growing lights. I planted the tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, annual herbs, and luffas out for my birthday - May 16th - two years ago and it snowed on them! I wait for Memorial Day now!


Having never tried broccoli, I'm letting the seedlings get very large before putting them out. Probably too cautious on my part.

Like you, ATS pics confound me. All this talking about plants and no pics.... Oh well.



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 11:39 AM
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First off, I'm going to OFFICIALLY propose the addition of a Gardening forum to the rest of the staff...


Ok, so this fall, I'm going to do my first big attempt at gardening. I've got the room to do it, and people at the house needing chores, so jumping in. I guess you could call it a victory garden or survival garden. The idea is to grow foods we eat that will grow in my zone (Zone 9, Central Florida).

I'm doing raised bed gardening, and rigging soaker hoses to go down the middle of each. The rightmost row will get a bit of shade from the long garage (3-car, so longer than you'd think). It will be completely fenced (4' high) to help prevent the dogs and other animals from getting in.

Here is the layout and crops I came up with (I know Asparagus is hard to grow in my zone, but has been done, so trying it)...



It isn't quite to scale, but this is the general idea. Most crops here are planted in September and February (most can be started in August, but this way, it's all more convenient). Carrots and Strawberries don't start planting until October, so putting in some quick harvest crops before doing those. I've been checking for vegetable compatibility, etc. so hopefully nothing is next to something that doesn't work for it.

Do any of you seasoned gardeners see any initial or glaring problems with this idea? Would be nice to know before doing it. Thanks.



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 12:51 PM
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Originally posted by Halekoch
reply to post by otherpotato
 


I'm in zone 5. I have my potatoes - purple and red - beans, peas, onions, scallions, romaine, and zucchini planted. Those just grow for me, very effortless. I concentrate on everything sitting on a 6' table under my picture window and growing lights. I planted the tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, annual herbs, and luffas out for my birthday - May 16th - two years ago and it snowed on them! I wait for Memorial Day now!


Having never tried broccoli, I'm letting the seedlings get very large before putting them out. Probably too cautious on my part.

Like you, ATS pics confound me. All this talking about plants and no pics.... Oh well.


So you must be a little more north than me (I'm in Mass). One year I really jumped the gun (it was an honest mistake - it hit 75-80 some days) and planted tomatoes, peppers, cukes, squash at the end of APRIL. I got my butt handed to me that year - never plant that stuff before May no matter how nice the weather seems.

May 15 is usually the target date where I live but it's a sliding scale. I'll let you know how my broccoli does going out small (some only have a few true leaves). If I do OK then chances are you will too.

I have yet to try onion. I looked for sets but didn't find any and when i tried growing from seed I failed.



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 12:57 PM
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This year I'm working on a monster compost pile.

My grass trimmings and horse manure are added weekly. I turn it over about every week. (I have a tractor for that)

I'm planning on doing a couple of french intensive organic beds towards the end of the year. I retire in June and will have time to more actively garden in the future.

My kids used to love the snap peas. We would only get about 1/4 of the ones we picked into the house. The rest got eaten. Also, strawberries. We could never have enough of those.



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 12:58 PM
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reply to post by Gazrok
 


What a great chart - I love the color coding. I sketched out mine to scale this year. I should, scan it and post it here (been meaning to do some pics - procrastinating).

I do not see any conflicts at first glance, though I do have a suggestion. I don't know if beets grow in your zone but my grandmother always planted beets in between her carrot rows. It does something to help them along. She always got huge carrots so i am trying that this year. Also if you mix sand into the soil it prevents the carrots from growing weird and helps them grow bigger. I didn't figure that out until several years of growing carrots with three or four legs.

Gardening Forum! Gardening Forum! Why do think I have been posting gardening threads every other day



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 01:02 PM
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reply to post by Gazrok
 
I want this garden! Wow! I thought mine was cool, but wow again, this is amazing, like having a private produce dept from the supermarket! Okay, let's see, a bit of tweaking is all I see right off......

You might want to check the seedless watermelon seeds that you are going to use, if I recall correctly to have seedless watermelons you will also need some seeded melons growing and blooming at the same time.

A week before starting to harvest the melons you will need to cut back on the water so that they will sweeten so this might affect the other veggies sharing the line of water....

Melons take a lot of space so don't be surprised if they overflow into the aisle between the gardens, I've always liked the way they redecorate mine.

That's it for now, wow, love it!



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 01:06 PM
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Great thread.
Book marking
I would love a specific forum for gardening and growing food!!
edit on 3-5-2013 by Starwise because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 01:14 PM
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reply to post by Gazrok
 
Okay, found it. Yes you do need a seeded melon plant or two to grow seedless melons, here's a link:

homeguides.sfgate.com...


Since seedless watermelons require the presence of seeded varieties to pollinate their flowers and set fruit, mark the seedless plants early in the year so you know which type you are harvesting.
edit on 5/3/2013 by seentoomuch because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 01:28 PM
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reply to post by otherpotato
 



I don't know if beets grow in your zone but my grandmother always planted beets in between her carrot rows. It does something to help them along.


Just that nobody in the household eats beets...
They are listed as a companion vegetable for them. No problem with sandy soil here in FL though, and yes, beets grow in this zone. Good thing to keep in mind though, depending on how they turn out.



posted on May, 3 2013 @ 01:32 PM
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reply to post by seentoomuch
 


Thanks for the compliment, has taken quite a bit of research and talking with local farmers to devise how to best utilize the space and try and meet as much of our produce needs as we could.


Yes you do need a seeded melon plant or two to grow seedless melons


Thanks so much for that. I'll work that into the plan, that's exactly the kind of info I was looking for.

I know better than to expect this to all work out perfectly the first time out, but I'm trying to hedge my bets as much as possible. (and, I do live in PLANT City, after all....seriously, that's the name of my city)...
edit on 3-5-2013 by Gazrok because: (no reason given)





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