Although I can no longer garden because of my post polio syndrome and the difficulty in walking and bending over I would still be very interested in your experiences and questions. In a way it would be as if I were out there again as I very seldom leave my home except to buy groceries. I use a cane and am saving up for a power scooter. (Very Expensive)
Tplant will your insurance not help with the power scooter?
I'm enjoying my original EB's. I have bush beans, herbs and zuke in them. Other than being a bit smaller I can't see a real difference, and since I didn't plant any of those crops in the 2nd or 3rd gen boxes it will be hard to see if they have production differences.
I'm so glad you started this thread as I am composing a letter to Earthbox this morning. I've been a loyal customer ever since you introduced the EB's to me, I have 24 full size, 1 Jr, watering system for 20 and several staking systems. I purchase covers twice a year and have even given EB's for gifts on several occasions. Our issue is the watering system, we love it...when it works! The sensors are horrible and break often and without notice so unless I check several times a day I can come out to severely thirsty and wilting plants when one malfunctions. I'd rather not promote more stress than necessary! I've spoken with EB several times and never really resolved the issue but this season we have at least 6 that have stopped working and at 15.00 plus shipping each I refuse to pay for a defective product. While I love EB's and would like to have more, with this type of customer service I am seriously rethinking my loyalty. I can produce my own re-usable covers and several other EB type products are now available.
Sorry for ranting..but I got carried away...since you've been dealing with them much longer than I have any hints or suggestions?
Just a little update, I did a Google search and contacted someone at EB and the response was amazing. They will replace all the broken and under producing (trickles water) sensors and will do an analysis of them to let us know what needs to be done to correct the problem. I'm thrilled! You know I love the boxes and the watering system just made it so much easier to keep the water levels without the hassle. LOL I've told the DH that to show my thanks I think I need to buy a few more EB's!
I am sorry you are having a hard time. I was waiting for your watermelon EB topic...I guess that was a No Go. I just bought 5 more EBs. (chop my head off) One for watermelon. I will be growing that Crimson Sweet. Three in one EB. I have Wave petunias in 2 EB and waiting to put wave petunias in one more. Using them as window boxes. I have no idea what I am putting in the other 3...I have tomato plants everywhere in the ground. I have raised gardens for the peppers, eggplants, corn and okra and cukes. I just like the EB and have no idea what I will use it for.
Herbs...my herbs are in the garden too. basil, sage, oregano, dill, chives, garlic, onions and some herb that is suppose to taste like cucumber.
Those are the only herbs I care for.
cilantro is nasty and i can't stand mints.
someone suggested growing tomatoes for giant tomatoes. I would love to grow a giant tomato. I have 5 big zacs rooting, 5 beefmaster, 5 large red, and 5 delicious...all rooting. someone also suggested that I cross the big zac with the delicious and see what i get next year and many giant tomato growers would be interested in the seeds.
another suggestion was growing the Atlantic Giant Pumpkin in one. Not for world record. That adventure is for rich folks. Just grow one for fun. It has been done by others for Fall decorations.
So... i have many options.
Personally, I would prefer to grow that Atlantic giant in a 50 gallon drum. If its gonna be in a container, might as well make it a good one.
I also opted out on growing the melons in the Earthbox. I chose to grow them in 25 gallon pots. I have many acres but none of it is work growing in. Its hard as a rock in the summer and wet as a pond during the winter. Clay, well clay, white clay, orange clay...etc... I have to grow in containers or grow in raised beds.
I just grow them like any other veggie. I fertilize with the same fertilizer that I use for my tomatoes and peppers but the only difference is they don't have to have as much cause they are not heavy feeders like tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers.
As for my basil. I try to get it to produce leaves for a longer period of time by pinching off the bloom buds when they appear. And if you pinch off the tops of any herb, it will bush out and produce more leaves. And you are suppose to harvest the leaves before the herbs bloom. Tis why I pinch off the blooms for as long as I can.
Sage is a perennial. Mine is blooming right now. By the time I realized it was blooming, the whole plant was in full bloom. Sage can get pretty big.
Rosemary...oh my goodness. It will grow like a hedge. It will be small the first year and make you say wow the second year and make your mouth drop open the third year. I planted my rosemary during the summer of 2010. It was about 6 inches tall then. It now takes up a huge space. 2ftx3ft
I remembered the name of the cucumber flavored herb. It is called Salad Burnett. You use the leaves in fresh veggie dip to give it a mild (very mild) cucumber flavor. It is also a perennial. I planted it last year.
My oregano is low spreading and the one plant from last year now covers a 16 inch square and its not even summer yet.
I planted a Lemon Bee Balm too. I like BeeBalm. It draws in the butterflies and hummingbirds. It is good for seasoning fish and chicken or anything you want a mild lemon flavor on without rushing to the store for a lemon. It is a perennial and will spread quickly.
My advice would to be======always grow perennials in the ground or raised bed and grow annuals in containers.
I have five original Earthboxes that are probably 7-8 years old and still use them every year. I love them for growing tomatoes because I can control the watering--they are never over- or underwatered. I use a mix of pine bark fines, potting mix (ProMix) and compost in mine and add lime to the top 6 inches plus tomato food. In the fall, I put bulbs in a few of the Earthboxes and store them in my garage for the winter. This is the only way I can have tulips without the blasted squirrels and chipmunks digging them up. I have also put sugar snap peas, radishes, carrots and lettuce in one or more at various times. I love the ease of set-up. I have done homemade self-watering containers but the original EBs never have an issue with clogging of the watering apparatus like my homemade ones have.
TPlant--just checking in with you to see how you are?
I have 13 EBs this year--5 with tomatoes, the rest with peppers, eggplant, cabbage, green beans, squash and cukes. We've having an especially warm summer so am very grateful for the EB watering system. So far, it's keeping up with everything. THe tomatoes and eggplants are loving the hear!