Peppers and Okra has been in the ground for a week. Onions and shallots for a month. Putting tomatoes into big containers and pulling weeds so far today. Looks like rabbits or deer ate all my okra last night so I'll be planting more seeds before it rains tonight and all day tomorrow. Planted bush bean seeds last weekend so they should be up shortly for the rabbits to eat.
Anybody here familiar with straw wattles? You see them along new freeway work sometimes, look like a big worm. They are used for erosion control. I've made garden boundries with them. Quicker and easier than a raised bed...and I can do it myself. The hammering drilling and sawing, DH has to do.
Anywho, I created a new one last weekend for pepper plants - hot peppers - various kinds. I filled it with some sandy loam mix, commercial compost and a bit of home-grown compost. Straw mulch, large rocks bordering the straw, mostly for asthetic purposes. I also have a keyhole garden that I created 2 or 3 years ago, I'll dig up a picture.
I had two tomato plants, both Black Sea Man, that were doing the old curly leaves routine. I potted them into much bigger pots, no in-ground available ATM, and moved them out of all day brutal sun. The other tom plants seem very happy with the heat but the Blackies are not doing so well. A Black Krim also sickly.
Here's the main keyhole garden being developed (Feb 2010), then it had filled in by March 2011. It's transformed yet again.
Anybody else try these? [edited to aplogize if these photos are repeats, I don't *think* I've posted these here before but not sure.]
Didn't make them. I get them at a construction supply type of place. Around here it's Marvel Masonry aka Border Construction Specialties. Looks like they have a few locations in the SW but El Paso is probably too far for either of you.
oops - meant to give you this link, fwiw. Builders supply is where you will find them methinks.
What's going on in my garden is - I'm having a hard time talking myself into pulling out the winter/spring stuff to make room for the summer garden. I am so far behind (again). Still have chard, and late-planted kale and collards to harvest, the broccoli is producing heads and sprouts, the solid bed of sweet onions are bulbing up nicely, and most of the garlic varieties are starting to thicken at the bases but aren't forming cloves yet as far as I can tell (leaves are still green). I've got cilantro and basil self-seeded that are ready to begin harvesting. My late-planted broad beans (planted mainly to see how they like my soil) are showing tiny pods and may actually produce some seeds for soup. The tomatoes and peppers are going great guns in containers, and the eggplants and tomatillo transplants are rapidly rooting into the garden where the neighbors chickens demolished what was supposed to be my winter vegetable supply. The overwintered peppers are supplying fresh fruit, some of the hot varieties for the first time. Next up: cowpea and edamame variety trials.
We are getting some chilly weather. It is not suppose to be frosty but extremely close and it's making me nervous.
As for changing out plants from spring to summer crops...I have just about made up my mind to grow the cool weather crops in containers from now on and leave my big open beds for the big heavy duty plants that normally need to be planted before the cool weather is finished.
I don't grow a lot of cool weather crops anyway and what I do grow is shallow rooted and grows great in containers. The same plants can be started again in the containers during the summer for the fall crop while the big heavy plants are still in their beds producing. etc...
Also have a few Table Top Gardens for the small stuff too... lettuce, carrots, radish, choy, etc...
I tried Chard this year and ,,,I don't like it. I guess it would be ok adding some to spinach to make the spinach go further. I will always grow it cause it is good for me...but it is soooo blah.
I know white buckets are food safe. Home Depot orange buckets are made out of the same stuff the white food grades are made of. Is that what you are talking about?
I have a thousand 4 gallon nursery containers. I prefer 5 gallon buckets.
IF the air doesn't kill me first, I guess the buckets will.
I hear some folks are stocking up on food and using the home depot buckets for storage incase there might be a Dooms Day soon. Mostly economic failure. But in my opinion,,, an economic failure will be Panic Induced. My step mom is one of those preppers..
I've only just started looking into e-buckets as I hope to make some next year. From what little I've read, there is a difference between food grade buckets and those used for other purposes, even if they have the same number on the bottom.
The white ones from restaurants should be food grade.
I've been listending to "dooms day" theories all my life - now I'm too old to care. LOL
I don't know if the info would really matter. I'm not saying it mite not be toxic, I highly doubt that either are but storing prepared food is completely different then growing plants. The conditions, the additives, the whole process, is just different. Plants are shipped and grown in plastic all the time. If if poisons are produced with say, the heat and addition of fertilizer it doesn't mean that the plant can metabolize it anyway.
If your really concerned about the food grade issue. I wouldn't grow in plastic anyway.
I'm reading a great book calked THE DOSE MAKES THE POISON. I'm really into this kind of stuff but it's even hard for me to get into. I may have to switch off ever so often with some lighter reading. But it helps explain why poisons are poisons,but not under every circumstance. Let's face it Nightshade plants are poisonous but we sure spend a lot of time trying to grow them. Lol Bee you are NOT too old, but when I read about your exploits you sure don't sound like your from England!
Lisa - [quote]when I read about your exploits you sure don't sound like your from England![/quote]
The English are supposed to be very "refined" and "reserved" - I'm neither - probably why I left England LOL
While I was talking to my neighbors yesterday I was covered in mud! I asked if they liked my "outfit" - they said I looked like a Country Girl (whatever that means.)
I'll probably purchase some food grade buckets just to convince myself they are "better" and quit being so concerned. It occurred to me this morning that I grow lots of transplants in plastic pots - so how can plastic buckets be so different!
TRG, good to see you 'back'...love the pics. Thanks for the kind words on the wattle garden all. cocoa_, I don't place scraps directly into the garden, it gets watered weekly with a sprinkler. I need to rig up the drip line but haven't done it yet. I have a compost barrel and compost all kitchen scraps.
Ah, I see, thanks. I hope to a keyhole put in this year, I'm going to try the type that has a compost bin in the center, 'they say', there is enough water in compost scraps to keep the keyhole watered. It'll be an experiment for sure. At 110 degrees, not even my scraps have much water in them.lol
Oh, I wasn't aware of that fact. Do you have a link? I'm interested in where the compost section is located, am guessing the top, narrow part. There are some really really nice keyhole gardens out there. Mine is functional but not so 'pretty'. If I ever again live where green things grow, I'll try something more elaborate. Green is a color we lust for here in Phoenix. [sigh]
I'm thinking about planting my Butterbush (butternut) squash seedlings tonight. They've been outside for a couple of days, and are starting to send roots out of the peat pellet. If I don't get them into the ground I'm afraid they will be disrupted when the roots are torn out of the pellet tray. Even with outside sun, they continue to get more leggy. Getting them in the ground may be the best treatment. After all, how much "hardening off" does a cotyledon have when it breaks out of the seed?
Today is my weekday evening off dialysis (YAY!) so I have a chance to do a few things around sunset. Watering everything, since it has been all month since we have had a good rain. The temps haven't been as bad as last year, but April has been very dry. Trying to decide what to do with the last space (about 30' x 30') in my garden. I will probably plant one more block of sweet corn, but that will still leave room for a few more rows of something. I may plant a few succession items-- my first planting of green beans germinated poorly, and there's always use for more yellow squash (we like Early Prolific Straightneck, picked small). I've already added sweet potatoes and purple-hull peas as new items for the year. I also have space currently in late 'Spring' vegetables: Sugar Snap peas, lettuce, spinach, bulb onions, green onions, and (bolting) broccoli. I'll reuse that space for some fall planting, which I haven't been doing before.
Of course, I have tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, and okra as well. Any suggestions for other summertime garden favorites?
Nice rain this morning. The pepper plants are almost a foot tall and the tomatoes just a little taller. Zucchini is happily making new leaves and the cukes are looking good. Okra is a little slow but it isn't hot yet.
Today the squash, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and beets got watered. The new corn silks got a dose of Dipel.
And, the cucumbers are starting to come in. My neighbor who is in their mid 70's gave me a sour brine counter-top pickle recipe a couple years ago. It's one I use every year and it's quick and easy. All you need is salt, vinegar, water, dill blooms and a glass container. I use a large Pyrex bowl or a used 5 quart pickle jar.
What a pretty kitty tx! Nice cukes too. Can you post the recipe?
I sowed okra and armenian cukes seeds earlier this week. The seeds had been soaking a couple of days. We had a little rain yesterday. I'll plant corn and basil this weekend. Maybe a few more summer squash seeds. I need to find spaghetti squash seeds.
Picking Sugar Snap peas today. They didn't get as tall as some other years, probably because I planted so late. You can see in the first photo that the plants are still blooming, at least. Beets are looking pretty good, too. There are a few that I could pull now, but I will let them grow bigger for slicing.
I need to cut some lettuce. I grew up eating a wilted-lettuce salad that we called "fried lettuce". To make, shred a mix of leaf lettuces and some spinach leaves. Add finely chopped green onion. Salt and pepper and toss well. Heat bacon grease in a cast iron skillet (the amount of grease depends on the amount of salad) until it is smoking hot. Carefully drizzle the hot grease over the lettuce, tossing to mix. Sprinkle lightly with a little apple-cider vinegar and dig in. Unbelievably good! You can use other oils, but the bacon flavor is a major contributor to the success of the salad.
Yellow squash is starting to bloom. It looks like I may be lucky in that both male and female flowers are starting at the same time. Bees are already buzzing the plants. The cucumbers are a bit slower. The cuke seeds I started in peat pellets are doing well, though and are beginning to put on a burst of growth.
The Vardaman sweet potatoes are making a good start. It looks like all 50 of the slips survived the transplant and all our putting out new growth. I am very happy with the quality of the slips. I planted fairly close (10"). According to "tatorman.com" (George's Plant Farm) the closer spacing should encourage the plants to produce consistently-sized sweet potatoes. The foliage is a pretty cover and might make a nice ground cover in a flower bed.
The boy flowers have shown up on my cantaloupe plants!! The girls, bearing fruit, should be showing up soon. The lemon cucumbers are getting big and starting to form tendrils. Now that we've harvested some of the dill, the Marketmore cukes are really taking off. I'm going to transplant some of the seedlings to a different place in the garden rather than toss them on the compost pile. The peas are doing well. They really like the chain link support.
David, Love the pictures. Everything looks so fresh and beautiful.
It's about time for my beets to all come out to make room for cantaloupes. My beets were planted mid January so they have been in the ground long enough.
I planted several varieties of sweet potatoes three years ago in different spots around the garden. Last year volunteers produced three 5 gal buckets of potatoes. Same thing this year, sweet potatoes coming up all over the garden. I started with probably 20 slips.
I am guessing that with 50 slips you will get 3-5 bushels of potatoes and have vines coming up in your field the rest of your life...happy eating. :)
I'm not growing cucumbers this year. Had a really bad infestation of cucumber beetles two years ago, so I thought I would give enough time between crops for them to die off!
Our sweet potato slips are due here today or tomorrow. Unlike gardeners further south, our vines die with the first fall frost - which is usually between October 1st and 15th.
All tomatoes, except OSU Blue have been transplanted. The OSU's will go out next week - they are hardening off under the porch. They have purple stems and really dark greenish/purple leaves. I'm looking foward to blue tomatoes this summer.
I found another tray of sweet peppers on the light stand this morning. Scratching my head as to where to set them. One even has buds!
All the squash has been transplanted. If they all produce fruit, we'll have enough to supply the whole neighborhood!
As usual, I have more tomato seedlings than I have room for, so I'm doing another experiment. I've set some into the thick bed of leaves around the sunny side of our oak tree. I pulled aside the leaves, sprinkled in some fertilizer and buried the tomatoes up to their first leaves.
[quote="MaryMcP"]What a pretty kitty tx! Nice cukes too. Can you post the recipe?
I sowed okra and armenian cukes seeds earlier this week. The seeds had been soaking a couple of days. We had a little rain yesterday. I'll plant corn and basil this weekend. Maybe a few more summer squash seeds. I need to find spaghetti squash seeds.[/quote]
Rain is good.
I don't have high expectations for my corn. We had a wet and mild fall and winter so the bugs and worms abound. I picked 9 tomatoes this morning and 6 had worm holes creating a premature ripening. I have seen katydids, corn worms and horned tomato worms all on the tomatoes already this year. The cole crops resemble lace. This is the year of the butterfly and moth. I don't get out much but I hate to think what the car and motorcycle windshields like for those who do.
Earlier in the season I bought a load of horse manure based compost from Garden-Ville in San Marcos. I was so happy with expectations of having the best garden ever. I filled the furrows in my dirt garden and applied ample amounts around some of my potted tomatoes, peppers, peas, eggplants, okra and corn.
See the results below. At first I thought virus until I noticed the plants that had no compost were perfectly healthy and robust. Day by day it looked more like the compost was the culprit. The only plants that don't seem to be bothered are the okra and corn.
Oh, and guess what? Year before last I bought a load of compost that was not horse manure based from the same supplier and while not nearly as bad as this year It did the same thing to a few plants I had used it on. At the time I had no idea the compost was the culprit. I thought I had some kind of virus.
I had plants to do that one year. I had used bagged commercial compost. But the extentions office couldnt figure out why my plants had this problem and guessed it was fumes from my heating system...even though they continued to grow like that after they were set out in the garden for a month. The extention office ran many test and was clueless. I even posted pictures here on daves.
trock, that is EXACTLY what I had 2 years ago, and it was from contaminated compost- it can be commercially packaged or not- there are many posts about it, but if you just Google contaminated compost you will see many many links about it. Some of my plants outgrew it but I lost a lot.
Oh I hate to see that. But that's why I've asked so many times on DG if people are concerned about using anything that could have Herbicide or residual herbicide on it. I've never seen what the actual damage looks like.
I know that Legumes are a good test veggie as they are highly sensitive and germinate quickly.
I wont even use my own livestock's manure. Except some in a stall that has had the gate shut for 3 yrs. If I do I always test it. Now that there has been the introduction of systemic herbicides there has been a lot of in for about it. The Natural Gardner, a local radio show, has warned about this. It can take up to 5 yrs., I think to leach out of your soil.
It doesn't matter what animal it comes from it matters what herbicide was used on the hay or grain they were feed. It can come in chicken feed. Horse quality hay is usually cleaner (less weeds) because us horse people won't pay for "dirty" hay.
Trock-I would say something to garden ville,they need to know this. It makes me think of less experienced gardeners that can't figure out what's wrong. So much for " organic gardening". This has become a well known issue but your pictures and experience make you the perfect example of the damage that can be done. Was this the compost that was in the back of your pick up, that you posted a picture of?
Yes, It was the compost in the back of my PU in an earlier post.
Applying lots of water to the plants and the ground beneath seems to help. Tomatoes are starting to ripen on the lower good part of the vines that were not affected by the compost so watering has to be cut back on them because of splitting the fruit. The compost seems to affect only new growth.
What a heartbreaker. So much time, energy and work work work to be blind-sided by contamination in the compost. I'm so sorry this happened to you.
Thanks for the pickled cukes recipe. I may try that.
In my veggie gardens, I'm finding the tomatoes and peppers in the raised beds are doing exceptionally better than the same plants in ground. I did not amend the in-ground bed much at all this season. I just add some granular ferts, compost tea and fish emulsion from time to time. I added a yard of 'sandy loam mix' from the landscaping supply company, plus compost that is ground trees, leaves and such. This compost farm does not use animal manure, it's all landscape materials. Anyway, I see a huge difference. The keyhole garden will get a good dose of that sandy loam mix and more compost before the next season. It's all about the soil isn't it? Anyone read "Teaming with Microbes"? Great book on just what good soil really means.
anyone growing okra? I never knew that aphids and whiteflies loved okra until I grew it in the greenhouse. wow. I put 3 yellow oily cards amongst the okra this afternoon. Dread the fact that eventually the pest will spread to the tomato plants.
I was so anxious and ready to till in my vermiculite, peat moss, and compost into a few garden raised boxes this evening so I could sow okra and squash seed and transplant corn but had company this evening. I wanted to plant a few more tomato plants and tomatilloes too. sigh. There is always tomorrow. Here lately there has been a lot of ...always tomorrow.
CricketsGarden, I put my okra transplants out April 15. So far out of the 12 plants the deer or rabbits have topped out 5 of them. I started another flat today. Maybe when it gets nice and hot they will grow faster than they can be eaten.
Among other things, I'm harvesting peppers from overwintered plants. One variety called El Incendio, described as hot and looking like a cross between a cayenne and a tabasco, has turned out to have only a hint of heat and a LOT of sugar when they're ripe. I enjoy eating these right off the plant. Easy to tell when they're ready - they come off with a little tug like a tabasco, leaving all the green calyx behind. My green onion box (self-watering container) continues to produce more non-bulbing onions than I can eat. The bulbing onions in the garden are really starting to enlarge - look like little earthquakes where the bulbs break through the soil. I was WAY behind planting my tomatoes, but have some green fruit already sizing up. Trying to find a place to add some summer legumes to my postage-stamp garden, but nothing else is ready to come out yet...
the ground is hard clay. It would take a week to chisel out a large hole sufficient enough to grow a large watermelon and even then I would be afraid that it would end up being a saturated bowl due to the white clay that starts about a foot deep so I am attempting to grow it in a 25 gallon pot. The seed has germinated. :) And to keep the pot from heating up too much, I plan to prop hay against the pot. (square sections)
I was wondering if watermelon vines take root to the ground at the leaf nodes like the vining squash family does?
you can buy the insect yellow cards but I make my own.
I take yellow card stock and laminate it . Then I rub veggie cooking oil on both sides and use a clothes pin and a paint stick to place it in the garden. The white flies and aphids are attracted to the yellow and when they land on it they are stuck there in the oil.
I got 'da beet! And here I am, dressed to the 9's, typical Sunday attire - squinting into the sun. I post this because I'm always curious whachall look like. Got any pics of yourself in your garden duds?
You asked for it! The hat isn't typical, but blue jeans and a t-shirt are routine. The suspenders get added if I expect to do much bending. I do shave, but it has been a couple days in this picture. I'm working on expressing my Arkansas mountain roots!
Turns out the photo on my phone is sideways. Being upright doesn't improve my looks any... actually it looks best if you squint both eyes then look into a mirror. : )
Our "Vardeman" sweet potato slips arrived on Friday, so I spent Saturday morning setting all 50 of them.
Today I set out the "OSU Blue" Tomato transplants.
I'm going to have to check plants for leaf puckering as I've used some wheat straw as mulch that my neighbor gave me. You'll hear me scream from here to Texas if I find any! Thankfully most of the garden is mulched with fall leaves.
I'm getting my garden area prepared too. Maybe a late start. At least I got the irrigation installed and most of the area prepared. Only if I hadn't planted that pesky Persimmon tree in the center. Had to lop off quite a bit of it to be able to work under it. Hopefully it doesn't produce to much shade.
Dean - We gave up growing strawberries because between the birds and the slugs we never got any. The birds get all the blueberries. One of our pear trees had three fruits on it last year, but they disappeared before they ripened - I think the culprits were squirrels.Tortoises eat some our tomatoes and melons. The fig tree set fruit early this year because the weather was so warm - along came a frost and all the fruit fell off!
Somehow we manage to get enough of every thing else for ourselves and to share with the neighbors.
That's great well that your able to share. It's not great the birds are eating everything. They sale that bird netting stuff, but it seems like it would be a pain to cover the whole tree with that stuff. My wife used to wrap the fruits as they mature with some newspaper and staple them. It seemed to work, but was time consuming.
Our tree is fruiting now though it did have some fruit drop. I've increased the watering and put a little fertilizer around the tree since the leaves were yellowing too.
Dean - I might try your wife's newspaper trick. The tree gave ten persimmons last year, so having to cover them will not be a problem. Ours has just about finished flowering, and I can see the tiny fruits beginning to form.
Linda, I love the pvc plug pots. That makes my brain wonder in many directions.
I am growing a few pumpkin plants and plan to wrap the trunk base with nylon stockings to prevent svb at that point. The rest will be buried vines. The only way i know how to protect a squash plant from the svb is to grow it in a screen cage.
I start my squash later after the SVB are gone. But ever area is different for SVB activity. I actually had the best and most pumpkins/winter squash when I direct seeded in August. They didn't have to acclimate and the vines grow roots all along the vine. It took some space but it worked well.
Hey neighbor, first of all there are no dumb questions. Just regular questions : ). It means Squash Vine Borer. You can google it to get all the info on their lifecycle and such. According to my A&M paperwork they are active around here between May and June.
Some pics around the garden yesterday...
1. Black Cherry
2. Cherokee Purple - very large tom, I should have placed a quarter on it for comparison
3. Hungarian Heart
4. San Marzano - the star of the tomato garden this year
5. Lrg Pink Bulgarian
The onions (Candy Apple Sweet Reds)
The raised beds as of yesterday
A pretty sunflower
The bed on the left has 2 Black Plum and one Hungarian Heart, the bed on the right has 2 San Marzano and one Cherokee Purple.
The plants in the beds are MUCH more productive than the in-ground plants. The soil was better amended, by far, at the start of the season. Now I can clearly the advantage of turning in some amended soil.
The left bed had the azomite added (remember that discussion??), the one on the right not. Can tell no difference in that particular experiment.
1. Your pic reminded me what I need to do to keep my RB from becoming a kitty litter box!
2. I can come get that stainless steel washtub anytime. Just LMK when. Was it you who posted the firepit pic for me? Nice! The firestarter wasn't shabby either!
3. When did you plant you onions out? Seeds or plants?
I worked like a DOG Saturday, reclaiming my yard that was, "tore up, from the floor up!" If it looked like it didn't belong, it had to go! I had tree trimmers pruning the two huge oaks on the front side, a handyman working on the back side, and I tackled the garage on the inside!
I made a very big dent...
Yesterday, I bought hardware to make two birdbaths, and the squash trellis. It's encouraging to know I can hold the squash until mid-July to thwart the dreaded, "Seriously Viscious Bug!"
I may even sow a few more seeds inside, since I only have the one plant growing. Does the SVB attack cukes, too?
Although I only have the 5 tomato plants, and the Rubbermaid tub of Sweeties going on now, I'll have the bell peppers, eggplants, okra, squash and cukes out in the next few weeks. I've accepted that I truly prefer starting seedlings for the spr/summer veggies, to actually growing them, so, I'm about to accept my calling.
However. Come September 1st -- LOOK OUT! The yard will be chocked full of every cool/cold weather veggie God will allow to grow between then and April 1st!
So, as I said on another thread, I'm not late. I'm being fashionably early for the fall/wtr season! ^^_^^
P.S. Fall/wtr Seed starting is targeted to begin in mid-June! The press is on!
Pic #1 No, that is NOT a body -- it's the sand for my RB garden mix...
Pic #2 My peaceful corner...
Pic#3 Three Matt's Wild Cherry tomato volunteers I was gifted with...
Pic #4 VA Sweets tomato blossoms. The tomato plants are about 3' tall now. I'm excited because I'm hoping to see the Sioux do what they did in last summer's drought!
Nice kozy backyard Linda. And your Sioux blooms and plant look really good too.
Mary...I like your raised beds. I been making 14 4x10. I am slightly over half way done. Hubby disturbs me. I told him I needed a day off. He said I get time off when I am working on my hobbys. He thinks because gardening is my hobby that I don't need a day off from anything. he apologized for thinking like that but ...still bothers me that he was thinking that way to begin with. Apologies don't change how he is thinking.
Do watermelons count in the subject of veggie gardens?
Does anyone have experience with the Carolina Cross? Do they taste good? Is it possible to get about 8 melons on one plant? I Know nothing about melons.
Watermelons count as that here, I don't have as to carolina cross, and hearing from succesful growers that 5 to 8 melons is not unreasonable. As to myself 3or 4 is usually about it.
I'm usually growing an older cultivar or two, this year it 's looking like orangeglo and kleckly's sweet,An occasional success at growing moon&stars in a container ,two about 8 pounds last year,(with a note that I wasn't always here or taking care of them)
I'm with you stephanie. i don't think the svb ever leaves here. It's here from May until Aug... really sucks!
In the beginning there was a seedling called Carolina Cross and she was planted in 100 gallons of soil mixture containing 15 gallons of rabbit manure, 1 gallon of chicken manure, 6 cu ft of promix, 3 cu ft of peat moss, 1 cu ft of vermiculite, 4 cu ft of commercial compost manure, 4 cups of lime, and 4 cups of bone meal planted in a wooden pallet crate lined with commercial ground cover.
and then there was 2 crimson sweet melon plants in the same type soil mixture in a 25 gallon pot.
Let me start out by showing you my big gardening mess while trying to get these grow beds set up in the garden plot.
It is sooooooo ugly. No body likes to show the ugly stuff. I am all over the place right now. I have messes everywhere and I must take time to clean them up!!!!!!
The big view ...clutter.
The Better Bush tomato plants. Okra seed sown in the middle...dang it...I need to water those!!!!!
Blue Lake Pole beans and crookneck squash
Celebrity tomato plants
I did not take pictures of the corn. Merit and Silver Queen in two beds.
Better Bush tomato plants, Pepper Plants, and Alibi Cukes
A 4x4 Table Top Garden with Eggplants, peppers, and wave petunias, and vinca
Better Bush tomato plants, vinca, marigolds, hosta, zinnias, tiger lilies
#1 small section of the raised beds and table top gardens in the back yard. What you don't see are= young seedless grape vines, garlic, cherry tomatoes, strawberries, squash plants, and behind and out of site is a fig bush and raspberry plants. and im sure i forgot to list something.
#2 scarred cucumbers. had a lot of wind the past two weeks. Lots of veggies are scarred. Even the leaves.
Cricket, aha, your the one with table top garden. I couldn't remember where I had seen them. I got some old green house tables I want to convert to growing tables. Won't get it done this year, so I keep all my questions till winter ;0) Your garden is looking awesome!
Steph, yay, for peas and I love your new plot of happy new dirt.
Mary, bummer, about the Azomite. I'll still add some, since I have very liilte in the way of minerals in my soil, but I had hoped for more immediate results.
Today in the garden. Peppers and tomatoes are growing, cucumbers and zuchinni are going nuts. The freshly gnawed okra is flowering despite it's lack of any leaves. The motion sensing sprinkler should be here tomorrow to hopefully deter "Bugs Bunny". Have another flat of okra germinating inside to replace the ones previously eaten.
My okra is blooming too. Little nubs of okra everywhere. Bounce Bounce. But i cheated. I started okra in the greenhouse cause I was hungry and didn't want to wait for warm weather. And I like munching on raw okra while I work. Makes a nice lunch.
You inspire me! And that my PVC tray is giving YOU ideas is a total compliment!
I LOVE figs! Please Tell me about your fig BUSH when you get a chance. My neighbor's old fig tree fell over last Thursday and, while I desperately want my own fig source, a BUSH in my yard is more appealing and less of a commitment than a full grown tree. I have a gazillion birds, and a bazillion squirrels. Easier to cover a bush!
PS could you post a full size pic of your 4x4 raised table?
Everyones gardens look great. Regarding the SVB all I can say is the squash/pumpkin seeds that I direct sow in late July/August don't seem bother by them in the least.
From what I've read/experienced they don't bother cukes or anyother vines. I don't know how they can tell the difference but some how they do. But sowing seeds in toliet paper rolls or PVC pipe seems easy enough. I just don't care for squash that much. I'm don't know where I'm going to plant everything that I have now.
Lisa: temps have been 60's/90's for the most part. Garden looks very happy. Once I have lots of green tomatoes, how long to they take to ripen? I'm about ready to put the mosquito netting back up before the birds discover my tomatoes are 'blushing'.
gg: for that wash tub, if you can find an old washing machine, just take it apart to get to the tub. Yes, it was me that posted the tub-converted-to-firepit. We don't use it in town, not as much heat comes through as an open firepit. It's great for camping when spark control is important. We've been trying to figure how to get one to my brothers in NY and Vermont. Shipping costs kill the idea.
Onions: from transplants I got through Dixondale Farms. Don't remember exactly, last fall methinks. My planting calendar says Dec/Jan so that was probably it.
cricket, your gardens and plants look grand as always and no, it's not a day off when you are working to provide healthy food, or a pretty landscape, for yourself and the family. Silly man, where did he come up with *that* idea??
Usually I go out to the garden tasks early in the morning - 6'ish - put off breakfast sometimes if I get going on a project, then come in late morning, putter around and, especially on weekends, find time for the hammock, a book and an adult beverage. It's good to lie about in the hammock and just gaze around at what my hard work and labor have accomplished. Rewards are an important part of labor.
cocoa_, no worries on the Azomite. Those beds were so well amended with soil and compost that the azomite was probably not needed anyway. I continue to sprinkle it around on other beds. It's got to help, even if to just add porosity to the soil by teeny-tiny air pockets. It's all good.
Sorry for the long post but I think I'm caught up to the lastest here now. Carry on...we found 'ET' out in the desert one time, looks like he was used for target practice. I sometimes use him for a scarecrow.
Linda. My fig bush is a bush cause it hasn't grown up yet. BUT, my grandfather had the same variety which is the Brown Turkey and he would prune it down and keep it a bush so he could cover it to keep the squirrels out of it. He use to live in the city and squirrels were over populated there. Yes mam, I will take a full view pic of the 4x4 table top today.
My neighbor gave me a work table out of their shop when they were moving out. It had 2x4 slats across the top of the table. I just put 4 4ft boards together like you would for the garden and sat it on top and filled it with soil . I painted it so it would last longer.
To give you a different take on it, here's mine. Inspired by cricket about a year ago. I used it to grow lettuce last winter. I have another one but we put a board over it when it was not being used and now it's a table. You've seen it in other pictures...pic 3.
Thanks cricket, it works great. Both as a growing table and otherwise.
I did my garden walk this morning, lots of tiny stuff...tiny green beans, tiny okra buds, tiny tomatoes forming :0)
Must be a lot of tiny bugs too, the keep killing my cucumber and melon seedlings, the ones that I direct seeded. I'm going to start some more inside, this year, transplanting seems to be working better for me.
Still no signs of SVB, but a bazillion squash bugs! I squished as many as possible. Last night I broke down and purchased some insecticide soap, made from potassium salt. It made quick work of killing them!
Lisa, I think it's the cut worms, I wouldn't call it an invasion, however, there are far more then normal this year. They seem to be sticking around longer, too. All my wasps have disappeared, I think they really helped keep them in check.
Uh, don't use that Bic fireplace lighter on your squash/stinkbugs if you're in the middle of a drought, and the grass below is bone dry...ask me how I know this...
"She screamed, as the little poofs of charred bugs drifted slowly downward toward the parched pile of kindling that used to be her green lawn, for at that moment, she realized how brush fires started..."
I fill my table top gardens with different mixtures. I like 1/2 peat and promix mixed and 1/2 compost. I love to add some vermiculite to that when I can afford it.
Yall are so funny with the squash bugs.
I like to use duct tape on squash bugs and their eggs.
If you tear off a strip of duct tape and fold it backwards into a circle so the sticky side is outward, touch the cluster of eggs with the tape and they come off without damaging the leaves. I also collect the squash bugs the same way. Then I trash them. Try to do this on the day you know the trash will be hauled off...I just like knowing they are leaving right away.
I really dont mind the bugs. I have found a Varigated Cutworm, Snail and a Scorpin. The only problem is they were in the house. The scorpin actually turned around and came after me. Dont need for that to happen again. lol
I had to take a break from the garden and cool off.
My little mantis cultivator needs to be fixed and i couldnt use it in the garden. I had to pull out the big tiller. (rear tines)
I had to spread out all my compost, peat, promix, lime , gypsum, bone meal into a long 4 foot wide row and till it all in with the big tiller.
Now I have to go out there and shovel it up into 4x10 piles for my beds.
I also made a 10x10 bed for my big watermelon plant. Not growing a giant. Just a bunch of little big ones on one plant. I know the plant will spread further than the 10x10 but all the nutrients and watering will be in the 10x10. The plant can go where ever it wants to.
I am going to grow some Crimson Sweet in 2 of the 4x10 and let the vines go where ever they want to also. I was thinking 4 plants per box.
If those EBs can handle 3 and 4 melon vines in 15 gallons of soil, Im thinking the 4x10 , 8 inch deep soil can handle 4 plants too.
This was just a few odds & ends of what Momma & I harvested last night and this morning. The two biggest Momma didn't even see, I found, almost tripped over them, this morning... Can't wait for the cukes to start forming, lots of blooms and seeing some little starters.
oh oh oh...I didn't like Zucchini years ago. I decided to grow one this year to see if my taste buds changed. They didn't. It was actually ok...but I don't want to grow anymore. I think I liked the young raw zucchini better. It had a mild nutty flavor.
Nice looking harvest Kev.
Picked the first batch of green beans today. They are 'Contender', a bush bean that does well in Texas. This is a crock-pot full of beans, with some potato & onion. The onion is also from my patch. These will be cooked "Southern Style," slowly, with salt, pepper, and a little bit (2 TBS) of bacon grease. By supper, they will be tender and delicious. My mother, her mother, and even her mother's mother always cooked green beans this way. I've never been able to enjoy those green beans that are barely cooked, crispy, and usually cold by the time they hit the plate. It's what one knows, I'd guess, that makes it what you like.
Also picked a half-dozen yellow squash. They will be sliced, soaked in some salt water, then floured and deep fried. Served with the green beans for supper. May have a pork chop, too.
I will be growing Royal Burgundy again this year from saved seeds from last year. It is so stormy, rainy and wet today that it will be quite some time before I plant them. I had never grown them until last year. I really liked them best after canning. They hold up really well during canning and are very flavorful. And, they are so beautiful while growing.
Is it too late to start more string beans here? I have KY Wonder Pole Beans growing in eBuckets, but they're under the patio cover, and too tangled to try to move into the sunshine. Plus, they've got spotty, rusty leaves toward the bottom, so I'd just as soon start them over, if there's time.
We only have FOUR more months of Texas Heat ahead of us...!!
Since there are several posts here about bush & pole beans, I hope this is OK to ask. I always grow Pole Beans- Kwintus is my choice. EVERY year I am bombarded with spider mites. This year as soon as the leaves broke through the soil the mites jumped on- thankfully I was on guard and began spraying- Organocide, Pyrethrins, and homemede spray. Today I bought some Neem oil and began using it at a ratio of 4Tbs @ gallon of water, which is what the container says. Hopefully I can get a crop of beans, but does anyone else fight mites like I do? It is really discouraging!
Jo I have lost a all my bean plants to mites before I knew what they were. They seem to like green beans, cukes, and tomato plants the most. Neem does a decent job. Since they are related to spiders regular insecticide won't work. If your not set on "organic" there are other products available. The extension agent gave me the name of one but I can't remember it ATM. Also every state is different as far as regulations.
It amazing how fast Spider Mites can take out a plant, literally overnight.
Dean, I'm glad I'm not the only one who's behind. Lol. At least everything else thrives in the heat. I'm just praying it's not like last year. I had so many plans but it's May, already.
[quote="1lisac"]Jo I have lost a all my bean plants to mites before I knew what they were. They seem to like green beans, cukes, and tomato plants the most. Neem does a decent job. Since they are related to spiders regular insecticide won't work. If your not set on "organic" there are other products available. The extension agent gave me the name of one but I can't remember it ATM. Also every state is different as far as regulations.
It amazing how fast Spider Mites can take out a plant, literally overnight.
Dean, I'm glad I'm not the only one who's behind. Lol. At least everything else thrives in the heat. I'm just praying it's not like last year. I had so many plans but it's May, already.[/quote]
I know what you mean. We're already in a slight drought is what I heard on the news.
TRock. Ive never been able to grow decent bells either I grow great sweet nonbells instead.
I have Yellow, Red, and Purple Marconis this year and I do save the seeds. Im trying some minibells in containers because the plants are so small. Some of the Marconis plants got planted with blossoms and fruit set. Yes, I know better. They have such a long DTM (80 days) that I just couldnt pass up the idea of peppers sooner rather then later. LOL
Now I just have to decide what to put in my limited space. Im not using my larger (main) garden this year. I havent kept up with the soil amending etc.and Im trying to keep this fun and not too much work.
Tomatoes, peppers, Basil, Inca berries, and tomatillos are all in except for those going in pots and a few stragglers Now I have to decide where the long beans, cukes, watermelon, one other melon, and spaghetti squash are going to go. Along with 4 types of Okra I really want to try. lol
I started my bell pepper seeds Dec 28th. I gave them Miracle Grow Bloom Booster for the first 7 weeks of their life and they lived on a heat mat in a mini hoop house until they were 8 wks old. I transplanted them to the 10 inch pots when they were 8 weeks old and fed them 16-16-16. They were transplanted to table top gardens when they were 11 weeks old. (march 17th) It was extra warm extra early so I transplanted sooner than I expected. They had bloom buds when they were transplanted and bloomed a week after transplant. (6 weeks ago)
[quote="CricketsGarden"]I started my bell pepper seeds Dec 28th. I gave them Miracle Grow Bloom Booster for the first 7 weeks of their life and they lived on a heat mat in a mini hoop house until they were 8 wks old. I transplanted them to the 10 inch pots when they were 8 weeks old and fed them 16-16-16. They were transplanted to table top gardens when they were 11 weeks old. (march 17th) It was extra warm extra early so I transplanted sooner than I expected. They had bloom buds when they were transplanted and bloomed a week after transplant. (6 weeks ago)[/quote]
I just saved this to my 2013 Tomato Grow List so when I sow seeds for 2013 this info will be in my face. Thanks.
I am a MG Tomato fertilizer fan. Actually, I think it is the Holy Grail for tomato growing. It and Medina Hasta Grow for Plants. Now I will need to track down MG Bloom Booster. Years ago I used something called Super Bloom by I think Green Light. As I recall it worked very well. I had forgotten about that product until now.
It makes sense though, You can't have fruit without blooms, right? Good thinking on your part.
Anyhow, here is a picture of the harvest this morning,tomatoes, cukes, zucchini, eggplant and okra.
Oh before I forget, heads up! Yesterday it was 94 degrees here, so if you are in Texas and still writing and talking about gardening instead of planting you may as well stay indoors in the A/C. Wink!
It's not the regular stuff you buy at the grocery store. It's a liquid, usually sold in a 1-gal container. I use about a capful or so (I never measure anything! LOL) in a gallon of water. There is also a dry molasses that can be fed to cows, horses, dogs, and even cats, but I use it to fertilize my yard and gardens. Daylilies really like it!
[quote="HoneybeeNC"]beebonnet - I chose the Royal Burgundy bush beans this year for their color. So often when I pick beans, I miss a few because they are so hard to see the green beans against the green foliage.
It's nice to know they taste good. I didn't know they were "open pollinated" - I'll be sure to save some seeds for next year.
Cricket---Your peppers are awesome. I am green with envy. I won't see a pepper in my garden until Sept. and they will be small at best. But, this is just NOT pepper growing country, so I must be content. I think pepper plants are the prettiest veg. in the garden.
Some pictures of my garden. peppers, tomatoes, bush bean seedlings, and okra seedlings on the deck. Peppers, onions, and shallot in the garden bed. More peppers on the other side of the bed with a zucchini and a cucumber plant plus the onions. My poor okra plants in the front bed.
It rained a bit last night and everything's perked up! The lemon cukes are growing like crazy! They are such aggressive climbers, but they taste oh so good!! The beans are doing well, the tomates are getting established, the okra's coming up, and the peas are still going strong. It will soon be time to harvest garlic and onions! I can't wait!
Another secret to growing large lush fruits and veggies is Potassium and I like to use kelp soluble powder. Powder cause it makes more gallons than the liquid and for some reason it is cheaper and I order the kelp powder from http://www.extremepumpkins.com
they sell it in 1 pound bags for $12. It will go a very long ways in a regular backyard garden. You mix the powder in a gallon of water to make a liquid concentrate that you "again" add water to when it is time to feed the plants.
I did not have any kelp to feed my bells with. I just recently ordered more kelp. (seaweed)
Guess I can add Green Beans to my growing repertoire!
These KY Wonder Pole Beans actually grew under the patio cover. They've grown together now in seven 5-gallon buckets and are so tangled I didn't think I could move them without tearing them apart. So, I just left them under the cover. I didn't think I'd get beans, but, they're producing.
I pulled half, about 120, onions yesterday and had them out on the ground to cure for a couple days before moving them into storage. It started raining last night at 1 am. It's raining as I write this. So far it has rained about 1 and 1/4 inches. Yesterday morning when I pulled the onions the forecast was slight to 10 % rain and the national weather map was clear all around my area.
The other half in a different bed have soft stems and are just starting to fall over. Thankfully onions are cheap at the grocery store.
Guess I should have had crop failure insurance like the big boys. :)
stephanietx - your garlic does not look ready to me. Mine have been looking a little "yellow" this year. I put it down to the dry weather. I did give them some blood meal and they looked a little greener.
The leaves should turn brown and dry up before they are ready.
TRock, congrats on the rain!! I know how desperately you folks need the rain not only to replenish the aquifer, but because it's just been so dang dry down there! Sorry it comes at the expense of your onions.
steph, garlic will keep in dry soil until fall when it start to sprout again.
One year I dug my garlic in August. It was still good except a few bulbs had some black mildew from summer rains but no mildew taste in the peeled cloves.
About my onions, I posted situation on Dixondale's facebook page. Hopefully, I'll get some suggestions as how to best proceed. If we get sun this afternoon and tomorrow so the onions dry out I'll put them on wire racks cure under the barn.
All I can say about rain is those who like rain are misguided (a smiley face goes here).
I just had a long steady rain for 2 days. All the five gallon buckets had 2 inches of water in them. We were getting pretty dry. And I had just added peat moss and promix to the garden beds and it was a chore wetting it down but then came the rain and helped me out.
One of my tomatillo plants has a pollinated bloom on it. They are about 12 inches tall and loaded with blooms. Happy with that.
[quote="stephanietx"]Honeybee, the bottom 4 leaves are already dried up on most of the stalks. We've had temps in the low-mid 90s a few days this week and I think that's why they look so yellow.[/quote]
Mine have the same dried up leaves at the base, and, we too, have had 90's weather recently. Perhaps our garlics are suffering the same way.
Honeybee, I agree with the other bee, everything looks just great. Green, green, green.
I'm surprised you planted bush beans already. I thought they needed hot temps? Do you soak the seeds overnight first? Do beans need a fertile soil or will they grow in iffy soil? I just pulled all my garlic and could plant the beans in those beds. I have Dragon Tongue and a few others to try.
beebonnet - thanks for the nice comments. You are correct, there are very few weeds in the raised beds. I walk through the garden every morning and pull any weeds that dared to show up overnight. LOL
Mary - [quote]I'm surprised you planted bush beans already. I thought they needed hot temps?[/quote] We've been having temperatures in the 90's recently, although it has dipped to a more bearable 70's this week.
[quote]Do you soak the seeds overnight first? [/quote] The package I purchased (Royal Burgundy) specifically said NOT to soak them. Actually, I've never soaked been seeds. I used an inoculant once, but didn't find any differnce between those inoculated and others that were not, so I don't use it anymore.
[quote]Do beans need a fertile soil or will they grow in iffy soil?[/quote] I don't know if they will grow in "iffy" soil as I have always amended my soil everywhere I've lived before planting. I use the same fertilizer for beans as all the other vegetables.
Picked onions (photo on Hornstrider's onion thread) and squash, need to pick beans, peas, and pull the beets. Some of the beets have really jumped up in size since last week. They may be too big to be useful. Several are bigger than softballs! Sweet potatoes plants have more than tripled in size since planting. The first batch of corn is tasseling--I need to treat the silks with mineral oil before the ears get wormy. Tomatoes are looking good, but still nothing nearly ripe (photos posted on Tomato forum-Growing Tomatoes, 2012).
Rain is forecast for this week, so I need to get things weeded. If it rains before I catch up, there will be weeds overtaking several areas of the garden. At the moment, the weeds are the 2-3 inch, easy-to-pull variety. Unfortunately, there are a few areas where they are "carpeting" the areas around the plants where I can't use my wheel-hoe or the scuffle hoe. Lots of hand-pulling needed.
Honey, thanks for the reply. I need to pull out all the beets, the beans can then go in there. Pulled all my garlic this morning, very disappointing, small, small heads. I'll probably not do garlic again. Had the same result both times and it takes a lot of garden space and a long growing season. These are the beds I had thought of for the beans but the soil is probably too dense. Got to work those beds before I replant them.
David, I'd not heard that about mineral ooil to keep the worms away. That's interesting.
Two new Black Krim candidates inducted into the container garden. Along with a 15" Rooster Container for Mother's Day, just a bit early... Of course, it was on sale...
Notice the water mark on the bamboo stake. This was one of the pots that had been over-watered and still had the stake sitting in the bucket. Finally figured out the mix was holding water and I was adding too much too often...A couple of the tomatoes were saved but lost one and lost a couple of bean plants.. Oh well, it's all a learning curve...