Bob ... I'm soooo jealous!! Do I understand correctly that you plant your plants and then put your covers on? I usually cover my boxes and make the cuts putting the plants in the holds. Either way, this is very difficult. Any suggestions?
IO1 - I do it both ways. Just whatever mood I'm in. I planted the cabbage and broccoli today with the covers on first, then slit the holes. But as you saw, the peppers I'm doing it the other way. I guess putting on the covers first really is the proper way.
Moonglow - The cover protects the fertilizer strip from washing away to quickly. It's supposed to last all season. The cover also really helps with water evaperation. Also spash back of the mix on the plants during a heavy rain. But I like the look also.
The cover prevents weeds, keeps in moisture and gives protection from certain insects plus keeps animals out. Cats, etc.
Bob -- I grew some delicious broccoli a couple of seasons ago and will again when they finish the construction around me. Till then I'm limited to space and that is where the EBs excel . Less room but more production.
It's good to see you ... and as for the forum ... I couldn't have done it without all the input from everyone else. Tplant has tried to do this before. I think the DG membership has gotten larger, or maybe the interest in EB's has grown because we've watched him grow all his goodies? Yeah, that's it! I've been green with envy! Grin! Now that we have our own forum, he can share his knowledge and experience with us ... and it can finally all be in one place. :)
Moonglow -- use any quality potting mix. Miracle-gro is probably the easiest to find as it has the largest distribution area but I prefer Jungle Growth, Sta-Mix, Farfard. Stay away from anything that says soil and read the labels and instructions on the back of the bag as some will say "not for containers."
Moonglow - Don't forgot the dolomite lime in the organic section. They have pure dolomite in 5# bags and also 10-10-10 fertilizer in the 40 lb sack. It is a general fertilizer and can be used anywhere if you are not organic. I'm not with some exceptions. Your EB did come with set-up instructions didn't it?
We're more limited than Tplant as our growing season isn't as long? I'll be trying some spinach and other greens this year for sure.
Tplant, my EB's are sitting out there empty ... I've pulled my tomatoes now What else can I do? Remember, there are no plants at any of the local box stores here so will have to grow from seeds? Have I waited too late? I just don't know.
Cabbage and broccoli would do OK but thin leaf spinach would freeze up. Can you find any nurseries with seedlings already started or it will be to late. We used to grow the above including cauliflower till November on Long Island, NY.
No, haven't seen any plants anywhere. Guess that should be a sign. Honestly though, Lowes and HD stopped selling plants here in Aug. :-( Any they had, you sure didn't want to buy. They were disgraceful!
LeeTomKateBob: Ok, I notice that you have these hose like things going into the boxes, are they automatically watering the box or what? I notice that Earth box sells these, are they easy to use? How do you use them and what for? Am all ears and eyes here.
joy112854 - Yes, Earth Box sells a self watering system. I can't afford it, so I built my own. I bought at Home Depot a Orbit battery timer, some 1/2 inch polly hose, a connector for a garden hose and the poly pipe, some 1/4 inch poly hose, and some 1/4 inch vinyl couplers also a 15psi reducer for your water spiget. All of this is in the sprinkler dept at Home Depot or Lowes
I think you people in the south are going to have to carry the forum pretty much until Spring comes to us in the north. Most of my gardening from now on will be in the gh or my plant room in the house. 32 degrees outside right now at 6:45 am.
leetomkatebob: Apparently you have plumbing experience? I don't, I love it when you men know how to make complicated things and then act like they aren't. LOL The reason I asked is I noticed in the pics you have them and noticed Earth box sells them; have no idea how they work; but am interested in finding out. The Earth box website doesn't explain it or anything. How is it used and does it work and what is it used for? I suspect it waters the earthboxes using a timer? How does it determine how much water to put in each box. I got well water, so, am lucky there right? LOL Do you have a diagram and list of parts and a how to directions for us? I'm definately interested.
TPlant: I notice all the people who have public water are drinking bottled water these days? Hmmm, wonder why that is? Must be cause if you have your own well water, you can drink it yourself, it's perfectly safe and better for you, no chlorine or other addititives to kill germs and bacteria, it's not needed. Ever smelled city water? Notice that awful smell? Not with my well water, sweet tasting. I used to live in a big city and worked at a water filtration place, where they tested water, you'd be surprised what goes on with public water. Yes well water is hard water and maybe you are right, it might clog. I was really admiring the way he put that thing together there. Innovation is something else isn't it? LOL
I have well water, there are four of us using the community well, nice clear water, tastes very good. BUT after a time a white film occurs on the plant leaves. This is a very alkaline area. So tiny holes in a mist system for instance, will after a time plug up. I use rainwater whenever it is available. In our very dry area rain, enough to fill my rain barrel only happens rarely. Right now it is full. That is great until the weather turns really cold then the rain barrel has to be emptied. The trick is knowing when that has to be done.
That is enough!LOL Where do you find all the room? Very ingenius growing systems. The flat grow bags would probably be great for cantaloupes and watermelon as they like to grow high and then work down.
We have a pretty moderate climate here in Corte Madera especially this time of year, and I do not think the EB will dry out too fast. I also tried the seed tape for the first time growing across my two (2) tomatoes. No fertilizer strip either. Organic fertilizer mixed in Gardener's Self-Watering Potting Mix (with dolomite).
I'll read the thread again in case I missed the set-up for your Gypsy Pepper Experiment.
If not listed, please enlighten us. Thanks, BocaBob.
BocaBob, Nice container gardens you have. Actually I'm kind of glad for respite from gardening now that it is fall. There are enough plants (no veggies) in my little gh to keep me busy until spring seed planting begins.
Hey, would a toilet assembly ingeniously deployed work for an automatic watering system? I'm thinking a huge water resevoir, like a hundred gallons in a trough form, with several/many boxes of soil lined up on top. I don't know how to describe in words what I have in mind.
I will be building a screen house for my veggies. Rain is not very dependable here, and I have a cistern, very little extra water, especially when weather's dry.
Molamola -- I think I get the idea and it should work as long as you don't continuously wet the leaves but just the soil. I've been to the Islands several times in my career and as beautiful as they are, fresh water is precious and expensive.
Umm, I'm trying to think of a way to have the bottom part, the water reservoir of the EB, refill itself when the water gets low, rather than having a timer. Like a boat's bilge pump has a float switch that turns on the pump when the water gets too high.
Yes, I forgot! Here water is plentiful. He would turn on the faucet and when the pump came on he would shut it off. His HEB was 8'X6'. and he had two or three. A very unique piece of work. He even grew pineapples.
Boca bob -- How come you decided to leave your EBs uncovered? Doesn't that bring weed and bug problems? Hope you don't mind me referring to you as Bocabob as it is shorter and I think it sounds more elegant and you deserve the recognition after all your accomplishments with your several growing methods. No foolin!! Looking forward to seeing you after my next doctor visit whereas he gives me a shot to alleviate my shoulder pain from osteoarthtitis.
Tplant- Well here is the story. I wanted to try peppers uncovered and use my top spray watering system to see what would happen. The spray system is fed from a tank with nutrients and water. So far so good- no weeds (maybe because I'm using coconut coir, its weed free by nature), and no bugs cause I spray twice a week. I'm also growing carrots in a uncovered EB the same way. Most of my EB's are covered like they should be. I love the coconut coir as a growing media so much that I'm becoming a dealer. I'm having pallets shipped down here to southern Florida from up north. I'm going to carry three products: 5 gallon grow bags with compressed coconut coir, bulk 5 kg compressed blocks, and 1 meter flat grow bags with compressed coconut coir. I personally am using coconut coir in all my growing systems with great results. Also no need for any dolomite lime because unlike peat mixes, coconut coir has a 5.6 -to 6.0 ph naturally. I'm going to sell all this plus my "Green Thumb Planter" in the Marketplace on this site. BUT I NEED YOU to be my official tester (grower) with my products. I would really like you to grow side by side your jungle growth mix plants with plants in my coir growing systems. PLEASE SAY YES.
I have two questions about your eBucket. How come you drilled all those holes in the top and them plugged them with the map tube covers? And, would you mind sharing the instructions for your homemade drip system? I'm heading out to HD after work this evening to pick up my potting mix and dolomite lime to plant my Cole crop tomorrow in my 5 EBs. I truly need a drip watering system for my 5 EBs and would appreciate getting all the supplies in one trip. LMK please. Thanks!
Linda - The drip system for the EB's is as follows: One Orbit battery operated 2 dial faucet timer, one 25 lb pressure regulator, a garden hose, black or white 1/2 inch poly tubing (funny pipe) 50 or 100 feet, roll of 1/4" vinyl microtubing, one connector(hose fitting) (garden hose to the 1/2 inch pipe, one end fitting (crimps the end of 1/2 inch poly tubing, box of 1/4 inch vinyl couplers.
If you get all that stuff tonight, post that you did here and I'll walk you through the installation if you need me to.
P.S. I cut 5 holes in the bucket lid to be able to plant different combinations of veggies, and plug up the rest to protect the fertilizer and keep in the moisture in. For example: 4 lettuce plants around the edge holes with center hole covered or 1 tomato plant in the center and the 4 holes around the edge covered. (where the fertilizer would be). The top and plastic plugs are permanent and do not need replacing like the EB covers do. Notice the 1/4 inch tubing going into the fill tube for automatic watering
The cukes are coming -These are the special greenhouse seeds from Holland. No pollinator needed and all are female. The plants are now over 10 feet tall. The cukes are seedless and about a foot long weighing a full pound at maturity. These ones should be ready in a week.
Sorry to be checking in so late, but I've been under the weather today. I did get to Home Depot, and here's what I bought/have:
One VIGORO battery operated faucet timer - waters up to 6x per day(do I need return this and get the Orbit one?)
**100' of 1/2" poly tubing
**50' of 1/4" poly tubing
**Ten (10) 1/4" BARBS (you said couplers) (to connect the 1/4" tubes to the 1/2" poly tubing) -- I will purchase more of these since I forgot about all my eBuckets! How many 1/4' drip lines can I run from one 1/2" tube? I'll have 5-8 EBs and about 4-5 eBuckets in a straight row...
**One garden hose (already have one)
I have to return the backflow preventer (mistaken for the 25 lb pressure regulator; need to buy the connector to attach the garden hose to the 1/2" tubing; need to buy the end cap to close off the end of the 1/2" tubing; and I need to buy the hole punch tool.
I shopped at Home Depot, and it took 45 minutes to gather what I did. Still need to go to Lowe's...
I'll touch base with you tomorrow around 2:00, after church. I Definitely need you to talk me through this (I think!).
P.S. Minus the $26 I spent for new wagon wheels, this system cost approximately $67 vs. the $100+ for the EB version...
Linda - I tried looking up the Vigoro timer, and couldn't find info on it. So I can't comment on it. Keep the back flow preventer(good thing to have anyway) and it is recommended. You probably can supply water to 20 -25 EB's etc with no problem.
BocaBob, Wonderful garden. Our gardening is pretty much over for this season. It is 32 degrees outside right now and may drop another degree. Your cucumbers are beautiful. Are they the burpless type. I have a few fall planted lettuce under Reemay, that I hope to eat for a few days. Congratulations on a great garden, and envy.
Headed to HD and Lowe's to get the rest of my stuff, and I'll be back with you at 2:00, ok? I'll have it all lined up for instructions. And I'll have my digital camera ready in case you need to see what I bought.
It's ok. We can rendezvouz maybe tomorrow on my lunch hour at 12:00 p.m. HOUSTON time, which would be 1:00 p.m. FLORIDA time. If not then, I could meet you at 7:30 p.m. FLORIDA time which wolud be 6:30 p.m. HOUSTON time. LMK. I'll check in at work tomorrow.
It's actually been asked several times in the past. From what I remember Dave said it would take up either memory or bandwidth and slow down the site, especially for dial-uppers (like me!) and he wants to keep this place running as smoothly and efficiently as possible.
A way around it though is to merge your photo(s) into a collage, using your photo program, then post it as one unit.
I wouldn't recommend collaging ten pics together but two to four will work just fine. Keep in mind that the quality of the original pic is what determines your final quality. I also wouldn't recommend taking a picture of small size then enlarge it or you'll end up with a bit of a blur, but taking a larger pic and reducing it will not hurt the quality and pixels. 640 X 480 picture size is perfect for viewing onscreen and also for emailing, it loads fast and you don't have to scroll back and forth. If you put two of those together DG will resize it for you (unless there have been some changes to that effect).
This is not the best example, mainly becus these pics were taken with a film camera, then they were run thru a scanner and saved as a jpeg, then pasted together, but you can see even with all those steps the quality is fairly good. Using digital pics from the get-go will be much better. (Oh how I long for a digital camera again!)