Skip to comments.WEEKLY GARDEN THREAD MAY 10, 2013
Posted on 05/10/2013 2:41:33 PM PDT by greeneyes
The Weekly Gardening Thread is a weekly gathering of folks that love soil, seeds and plants of all kinds. From complete newbies that are looking to start that first potted plant, to gardeners with some acreage, to Master Gardener level and beyond, we would love to hear from you.
This thread is non-political, although you will find that most here are conservative folks. No matter what, you wont be flamed and the only dumb question is the one that isnt asked.
It is impossible to hijack the Weekly Gardening Thread ... there is no telling where it will go and that is part of the fun and interest. Jump in and join us!
Its been cloudy most of the day, but the sun is peeking out now and then this afternoon, and the temp is a great 68 degrees. Perfect for being outdoors.
I finally got a few things moved from the seedling area to larger peat pots, and sitting outside on the northerly side of the house. Started some peanuts and melons this week. Sugar Baby Watermelon, and canteloupes Minnesota Midget, Iroquois, and Valencia Winter.
Got the got 14 strawberries planted in urns and hanging baskets. Also started some cucumbers indoors for later transplant. Hubby got the Bantam Corn planted 70 DTM.
The indoor peppers are putting on new peppers like crazy, I am thinking that I may just put them in a slightly larger pot, and see how long they go.
The potatoes finally got here, so will be planting them this weekend, lord willing and it doesn't rain cats and dogs. LOL
Hope all is well with you and your gardens. Have a great weekend. God Bless.
Pinging the list.
Hi. I’m recuperating from my knee replacement surgery and depressed because I cannot work in the yard.
Asparagus is finally starting to come up outside, but no signs of life in the baggie on top of the fridge.
Lettuce being eaten by every small slimy or 6 legged pest there is it seems. Trying non toxic sprays.
Why are you going to PT? I had PT today too.
My asparagus in the little cups is so cute. I’ve got 25 or 30 of the Purple Passion that have broken the surface so far and about 15 of the Jersey Giant. Not bad for a total of $8.95 in seeds. Now, hopefully I can refrain from driving over them and killing them. Again.
I didn’t put out the tomatoes and peppers this week because of the weather. We got some rain yesterday but thankfully the bad storms went around us. More storms are heading this way later though.
The squash is blooming. Nothing else to report.
I use Diatomaceous Earth (DE) and Sluggo-Plus for my edible greens. The combo really really really work and you can eat same day with both of them.
I hope that you are doing well with the recovery, that can be difficult to deal with. I will be praying for you.
THE GOOD, THE BAD, THE UGLY
Before I start on this weeks gardening saga, after last weeks thread, an FR gardener from my town sent me a Freepmail. My town! I thought I was the only Freeper in my town. I wont reveal his identity, he can do that if he wishes, but I saw pictures of his garden. Maybe I can coax him to put that link on our thread how about it fellow gardener Freeper? He said he enjoyed my posts on the gardening thread. I think I know why I think he was laughing his head off at my attempts to grow something.
My week was filled with gardening as I learn to do this stuff. I wrote this yesterday because its long and I wanted all of you to know the details of how Im getting my act together. Maybe there will be some new people reading and they will know its not impossible to do this.
:o) THE GOOD: If you recall, I had planted various veggie seeds in six bags of potting soil mix and put them in blank spots in the garden. No seeds were up as of yesterday. Yesterday it rained and its raining again today. During a stop in the rain today, I went out and two bags have plants growing. One bags plants are over two inches high how does that happen in one night? I know plants do their growing at night, but plants growing that tall in one night is magic. The other bag with plants are at least an inch. No plants have appeared in the other four bags. I also know the wild tomato plants are up, planted in the ground, but they are tiny and that soil may not allow them to grow and produce. I have Roma tomatoes and cherry tomatoes growing, all are still green at this time. I think all the lettuce is a bust that soil in those two planters may not be good enough to support them. New potting soil will go in those next spring. I have Little Gem Lettuce seed coming and Ill plant that in potting soil mix. Maybe Ill get fabric growing bags for that as Im out of pots. The bags are inexpensive and I also have some sweet peppers and basil in tiny pots that need to be transplanted. Picked those up weeks ago at Lowes they are not heirloom.
:o( THE BAD: I ordered plastic tags to stick in containers and the ground so I would know what is planted there. Yesterday, I wrote all the names on tags with the included pen full of paint (not ink, paint). Had to use throw away surgical gloves because the paint leaked out of the pen and that paint is supposed to stay on the tags even in rain I would have had black hands with paint that didnt want to come off. So, when I went out a short time ago, guess what? All the writing on the bags was gone due to the rain. Ive got tags but dont know whats in the individual bags. Rats.
:o( THE BAD: My little Yorkie, Prissy, started barking at the glass door that leads to the garden. She knows if anything moves outside and always tells me by barking and jumping on my chair and hitting me in the chest with her two front feet if I dont respond immediately to her barks. I looked out there and there was a YOUNG SQUIRREL in my garden. I picked Prissy up, opened the door, came out and squirrel left. A damn squirrel, I knew it would happen. I knew several days ago, one was coming in the garden because there are footprints in some of the bags. Johnny said the squirrel may have eaten the seeds out of the bags. Damn.
:o( THE UGLY: I had to face facts squirrels are in those trees behind my garden in another persons yard. I have to figure a way to fix this and there are the birds in those trees, too, with their houses in the trees and they are going to come into my garden and eat my stuff. When I was out there today and plants had come up, I put a sheet of row cover over those bags with the exposed plants. Maybe that will deter the squirrel or maybe not.
:o) THE GOOD: I have figured a way to defeat this problem in the future. Somewhere in my outside storage building, I have an unopened very, very large bird net to keep birds out and squirrels if its done right. I have to give up planting in the dirt as I cant provide security for that area. Now, if this was a SHTF time and I had to have this food, I would kill (with my pellet gun as thats why I got it) every squirrel that came around, and I may do it to this one if I have proof he is eating my stuff instead of just walking across the bags. I will give the squirrel a fair hearing but those footprints are evidence hes been there. Maybe hell take the SODDI defense (some other dude did it), blame it on another squirrel. (I worked with a lawyer on a case choosing a jury for him and he said his client was going to take the SODDI defense (I had to ask what that was).
My solution to fix this by next spring is this: Plant all the food in containers I put on the deck. Ive already gotten the two big containers to plant tomatoes and I will get more for more tomatoes and other foods before next spring. I also bought a very large fabric container in which to plant heirloom sweet potatoes and I read how to keep sweet potatoes until the next season so I would have my own slips to plant if TSHTF and couldnt get slips from a company. Everything will grow in containers on the deck and the huge bird net will go over all of it. The net will stay up off the plants due to the tall lattice thats on the big tomato containers.
I have a new garden hose as the very old one was heavy and went into kinks multiple times when I tried to water and I spent time fighting with that thing. Fixed that.
I ordered a flower mix that attracts hummingbirds and butterflies to plant at the border of the dirt in the garden. Another one is the Sesame flower to go in a big pot in the garden and it attracts pollinating flying critters. It does produce Sesame seed to eat so Im sending some of those seeds to Johnny so he will have flowers that produce food. I dont have that order yet.
:o( THE BAD: I dont have enough space to grow all types of veggies. Thinking of when TSHTF, what foods do I need to sustain life, not what would be nice to have? Johnny says I need beans, corn, squash, tomatoes, peppers and that will keep one alive I would add sweet potatoes to that as they are very high in nutrients.
:o) THE GOOD: Ive been researching and I can grow corn on my deck which I thought I couldnt. Each container will have corn, bean, squash in it. The beans use the corn stalk to grow up and that also strengthens the corn plant. The corn plant shades the squash plant. If I have 8 of these or more, clumped together, wind will pollinate the corn plants and if there isnt any wind due to my high brick walls, Ive got an outdoor fan that will do it. I dont know how many containers Ill have but Ill stagger plantings so Ill have food growing for as long as possible. I have to come up with a fall garden plan, too.
Ill have to do the research to know when each of those plants can be planted and others planted later (staggered planning) to keep producing food month after month. I have a folder to keep all this information on paper.
:o((( THE FINAL UGLY: Johnny. I ask questions and he keeps telling me facts, then I have to come up with solutions to get around those facts that would stop me from carrying out my plan. He is the factual messenger of bad news regarding gardening and you know what has happened to bad news messengers throughout history. I love Johnny, he is one of a kind.
Give your asparagus a bit longer. My Martha (or mary, I forget) Washington has taken about 10 days longer than the purple passion or jersey giant. Perhaps because it’s heirloom and the others are hybrids. When I noticed the other two were sprouting I checked it and put it back. Just checked on it again and 50% or more have little tiny stubby roots beginning. I’ll have to plant it in the little cups tomorrow.
We’re going to use the Asparagus bed as a partial privacy screen for part of our property.
Oh no. Hope that gets better soon.
50% of the outdoor asparagi have sprouted in their jiffy pods.
Several issues. Cervical spine, C2 rotated into incorrect position. Several other C7 etc so tight causing pain, also knee pain, and hip pain - very tight muscles in thigh area need stretching, so that I can put on my socks.LOL
Also strength training to get back to baseline.
Thanks! Don’t want to wait to eat. Need to plant somore too. Plz xcuse-posting w/kindle.
They were rewarded with lots of beer and dancing girls? ;)
This is what I use on lettuce and other greens. Also my strawberry beds:
I have a big area to cover and use 1 or so of the 2.5lb containers per year. The Plus version has Spinosad. While it doesn’t *kill* my fire ants, it does cause them to move somewhere untreated. They’ve got a ‘free shipping’ with $75 order this weekend, promo code of MOMSDAY. They also have a whole bunch of their plants and other good stuff on sale under ‘Web Specials’. I got the Foxtail rosemary and the Sochi tea plant last week when they went on sale. Those should be here tomorrow or Monday.
No, I don’t work for them. They’re just one of my garden temptation sites though. YMMV, of course. I haven’t seen the sluggo-plus too many places. It kills rolly-polys too. Which is the main reason I get that one.
I got an O’Neal blueberry, pineapple sage, and chocolate mint from Shumway. My goal this summer is an herb garden just outside my front yard.
Now, I’m off to mulch the rice bed. I’ll be setting out about 250 little rice plants tomorrow. All at the 1 or 2 leaf stage. They’re so cute! Look just like blades of grass at this point.
Early blight on the potatoes, probably because they got the molassas/seaweed spray, and the fungi spores stuck. I did get some dime to quarter sized potatoes. Fall crop is my main crop on potatoes. This spring crop is just new taters for fresh use.
I ordered some mushroom spawn. It's time for me to try that and fail several times before I figure that out. I love mushrooms.
Everything else is doing well. The tobacco doesn't have much height to it, but I've got leaves almost as large as 2/3ds of a sheet of paper. I'll be collecting leaves and hanging them in a month or so.
Make sure you get ‘Food Grade’ DE when you get it. This is important. Jungs sells that too. So does our local Co-op. I get it either place, it’s approximately the same price accounting for tax IF shipping happens to be free.
That’s why I went with larger peat pots instead of transplanting into the garden. If the weather changes, I can still bring them in.
How deep do you guys plant your peppers? I normally plant at the root ball, but I’m wondering if there are any advantages to planting up to the cotyledons. Just curious! The garlic, after what I’m calling the Great Amish Roofing Incident, is growing very well. The onions are getting taller every day, the cabbage and broccoli were put in late but seem to be just fine. I’m using grass clippings instead of dirt for potatoes I’m I’m now thinking the result will be rot. Oh well, I’m glad I experimented and now know better! 25 heirloom tomatoes and 60 hot peppers (pepperoncini, hot banana, cayenne, and jalapeño) will have to wait a week because of a minor cold snap this weekend. Happy gardening!
I was hoping to get to work on my fence this weekend, but that’s not going to happen. I’ve had a tummyache since Monday, but I figured it was just something I ate. Then Wednesday night it got so bad I could hardly breathe, and I ended up in the ER. They ran tests and couldn’t find anything, so they just gave me painkillers and sent me home. I saw my doctor yesterday, and she ordered even more tests, but so far they haven’t turned up anything. I have to load up on ibuprofen just to be able to breathe and move, sleep is miserable no matter what. The ER gave me some stronger stuff but it makes me throw up and doesn’t kill the pain, and that is a very unpleasant combination!!
Add to that, both th ER doc and my doctor said to stick to clear liquids only, so I’m having to stay near a bathroom.
That was my week.
We use beer in tuna cans for those slugs that come around the strawberries.
I have too many strawberries for that now. That’s what I did when I just had the one small bed. My mom does that around her Hostas. If I bought enough beer for all my beds now I’d get invitations to 12 step programs...
We’ve had real good luck with Liquid Fence. Keeps the squirrels, rabbits and squirrels away. I spray the Liquid Fence on the perimeter, not on the actual tomatoes.
— Jane Reinheimer
Not a lot new going on in the garden. We have about 15 tomatos on our plants, from about dime size to nearly tennis ball size. Brandywine is doing the best, we also have Early Girl, Cherokee Purple, Better Boy, Big Boy and something else,that I can not remember. Peppers are blooming and green onions are doing well.
Since I did not start seeds this year, we had to buy plants for the garden, so we do not have as many planted this year. We did go to a nursery that carried a different brand than the Bonnie Plants that are sold by most stores around here.
It seems strange to see so much empty space in our little garden. We normally have the garden full with seedlings leftover to give away.
sorry — it’s squirrels, rabbit and deer away.
The *&$^%&* dug up a bunch of tomato and spinach plants last week, so I went to the local Dollar Store and bought several 1 bushel laundry baskets. I set them upside down over the plants after putting them back in the dirt. The tomatoes have recovered nicely, the spinach looks iffy. So far, the laundry baskets are doing the job though.
the ducks found a way under the fencing in the hoophouse and seem to like parking under the cauliflower leaves during the day. I was surprised to see a head pop out from under a plant a day ago.
“Weve had real good luck with Liquid Fence. Keeps the squirrels, rabbits and squirrels away. I spray the Liquid Fence on the perimeter, not on the actual tomatoes.”
Thanks so much for this information. I have a wall on all three sides of the garden and the squirrels are coming over the walls. Two of the walls are high brick and the flat top is wide. The back fence is wood and at the top of it, is a flat area all the way on that fence. If I put this Liquid Fence on those flat areas, do you think that would keep them out or does this have to be on the ground at the edges of the garden?
Got my Maters planted in my raised bed today! My wife came home the other night and her former Area supervisor in Mississippi called her and asked her to put in a request for a transfer back to the Meridian, Ms area. He has one opening in two of his stores. So if we go back we will be living in our house and not paying rent so the tomatoes I planted will not survive, if we move back! Gees I hate moving again!
“...bought several 1 bushel laundry baskets. I set them upside down over the plants after putting them back in the dirt”
What a good idea. I’m assuming these laudry baskets have multiple holes on the sides, like bars, but what about the top? How do you let the sun it if the tops are solid?
I put a tsp of DE in my coffee every day and a tsp on Lynn-DAH-the-Dog’s food. My nails used to chip and crack, but they don’t anymore, and Lynn-DAH has stopped shedding.
Of course, I use “food grade” DE.
probably wouldn’t want to eat “Sluggo Plus” though! LOL.
Ouch! I’m in good shape, compared to you. I just had my leg cut off and an insert added! LOL.
OMG! My husband just brought me home a present from my bank. Somebody folded a dollar into the shape of a ring (with a “setting”) and attached a “Happy Mother’s Day note to it. I feel so rich.
LOL. Love your posts too. The row covers have worked for me with the squirrels. Some people claim that you can put dog hair or even human hair around the plants to discourage these critters.
With respect to your lettuce or spinach. So far the mushroom compost is beating the tar out of top soil and mel’s mix, so I would advise to get some and at least combine it with whatever type of soil you decide to use. Also the black seeded simpson lettuce did well for me in the heat of summer in a pot where it got shade from a tree during the hottest part of the day/afternoon.
I use Milk cartons cut into strips to write on with permanent markers for labels. I addition, I also have a gardening plot drawn on graph paper. I write down what is planted in each spot, in case the marker gets lost or too faded to read.
Somewhere on a gardening thread, I recently typed in one of the complete diets from biointensive method booklet I bought from bountiful gardens. They actually list the foods and the nutritional values, and daily requirements. I think that was a couple of weeks ago when I was talking about Amaranth.
If you were going to grow your own food, and had no meat available, Grains and beans would be your main source of protein: Red Wheat, White Wheat, Rice, oats, etc. Amaranth is higher in protein and you can eat a few of the leaves while waiting for the grain to mature. It is also low gluten.
Many of the grains do not have the omega 3 fatty acids. Flax seed has a substance that the body can use to convert to omega threes. Walnuts also have the omega threes covered. You could stock pile some krill oil I guess, but I tend to look beyond the stockpiling to long term homesteading, because that’s kinda the life I want.
In addition to nutrients, you also want things that have high caloric value such as potatoes. Tree collards can substitute for dairy calcium requirements.
Gardens Alive ranks Veggies 1-5 with 5 being the most nutrient dense foods:
Tomatoes - 5
Edamame - 4
Green Beans - 5
Cucumbers - 5
Cabbage - 5
Broccoli or Cauliflower - 5
Peppers - 5
lettuce or greens - 5
Peas - 4
Corn - 3
Potatoes - 3
Asparagus - 5
Garlic - 3
Squash - 4
beets - 3
Carrots - 4
Now, if I am going to exist on mostly beans, then I have got to have some onions, taters, and a slice of cornbread to be happy. A slice of tomato is icing on the cake if ya know what I mean. So even though Potatoes and Corn are only 3’s, they are high on my list, besides they provide the calories for fuel to get out and do all this gardening stuff.
I’ll dig out my books and post some more on this later.
Have they checked your gallbladder? Those are the symptoms both my husband and I had. For him, it went on for years. Surgery in Dec. cured it instantly and forever. The doctor thought he might have been sufering from a bad GB for 20 years.
For me, it was just one attack, but surgery cured it.
I look forward to hearing about the mushrooms. I too want to do this, so I’ll learn from what you are doing before I try it.
Shitake and portobella are the ones I am most interested in.
I just keep them at the same level as they are in the peat pot. Rule of thumb on seeds is plant it no more than 2 - 3 times the diameter, IIRC.
After about 4 weeks, I transplant them and make the hole deep enough to put the whole pot in and keep the top level with the top soil.
I put it on my outdoor dogs bed. She has way fewer fleas and noticeably less ‘scratchy’ now. I put it around her food bowls on the porch too to keep ants and other stuff out. We sprinkle it in the nesting boxes in the chicken coop.
I hadn’t thought to eat it. I’ll have to give that some thought though.
That’s not good. I be saying a prayer for you. Last time I had pain in the tummy area and trouble breathing, It turned out I had fractured a rib. Last time it happened to Hubby, he had appendicitus.
Hope they figure it out, and you get to feeling better.
LOL. Well you know how I am about pesticides - try to avoid them at all costs in favor of stuff that we keep around anyway.
I’ll copy your post to me and print it and put in my folder. Yes, any info. you could give about food value would help.
I have long term stored food but I need to grow food and it makes sense to grow those foods that are highest in value to live.
Maybe throw some johnny jumpup seeds into the empty spaces. They are pretty and edible, and tend to reseed themselves.
So true. HOWEVER, the sluggo-plus is organic and gets rid of the rolypolies too. Turns out THEY were the little critters taking whole bites out of strawberries. But only when they got ripe. And the beer wasn’t doing anything to them. Teetotaling little food thieves.
Ok so you have some good news, and bad news.
Look on the bright side, no long trips back to mow the yard in addition to the yard where you live. Also, I assume that the salary will be a little more, and with out the rent - lots of money for plants and beer making equipment.LOL
OMG. You have to be kidding me. Knee surgery has got to be worse than what I have.
The PT means I can get better without surgery and drugs, and get around better, and be stronger. So, it’s all good.
Something decided to eat one of my cucumber plants, so I had to replant another one today. I have tennis ball sized tomatoes on the vines this weekend.
There are also several bunches of smaller tomatoes on other plants. Lettuce and turnips are growing great. Fresh veggies in a few weeks. YUM.
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