Gardening: What are you growing ?

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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 12th, 2015, 1:17 pm 

Maybe this village compost is not such a good thing. Very few of the seeds I planted came up. And want is growing is doing it more slowly than I would have expected. Last year I bought a couple of 4 inch tomatoes, planted them in this mixture and they died almost immediately. Now this? Maybe the compost is not the healthy medium I was expected.
If someone is using lawn chemicals to have the beautiful weed free lawn, and the clippings go into the compost, would that contaminate what I'm putting in the garden? If so, will it dissipate.
I also started fertilizing it yesterday, hoping that may add to the growth of what is there.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Darby on July 12th, 2015, 4:12 pm 

Watson » July 12th, 2015, 1:17 pm wrote:Maybe this village compost is not such a good thing. Very few of the seeds I planted came up. And want is growing is doing it more slowly than I would have expected. Last year I bought a couple of 4 inch tomatoes, planted them in this mixture and they died almost immediately. Now this? Maybe the compost is not the healthy medium I was expected.
If someone is using lawn chemicals to have the beautiful weed free lawn, and the clippings go into the compost, would that contaminate what I'm putting in the garden? If so, will it dissipate.
I also started fertilizing it yesterday, hoping that may add to the growth of what is there.


I've always found it to be a mistake to try to plant crops directly in actively decomposing compost, due to temporary extremes of pH, worms and bugs. Always best to wait for the compost to finish eating itself, otherwise it will tend to eat anything else you put in it, growing or not.

Let it quiet down, then relocate it, sift it, and check/adjust the pH, before using it.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 12th, 2015, 4:19 pm 

Yes I was thinking the compost may be good at adding nutrients slowly and as a soil additive but not so good as a planting medium. Maybe I'll try and get some soil this fall to mix in, and some more compost to pile up somewhere and let it do its job next summer and be ready for the garden the following year. I just hope it is not contaminated.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 13th, 2015, 3:12 pm 

The fertilizing seems to be working well, most noticeably on the squash and in such a short time and 3 tomatoes look to be growing and something else has popped up. It could be weeds at this point but they are in a line right about where I planted swiss char. This is all good to know for next year.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Darby on July 13th, 2015, 3:25 pm 

I've never had much luck with squash ... borers always seem to get them.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 13th, 2015, 3:52 pm 

I imagine my problem will be the rabbits. Other than tomatoes, this will be my first adventure into the garden life. Looking forward to next year. I'll try and have things ready to start seeds in Feb.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 15th, 2015, 1:45 pm 

Help, my squash have eggs from a bad bug and my neighbor gardeners will have a low opinion of me if I don't do something about this infestation. The solution must be organic. Any suggestions?
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 15th, 2015, 1:47 pm 

Watson » July 13th, 2015, 1:12 pm wrote:The fertilizing seems to be working well, most noticeably on the squash and in such a short time and 3 tomatoes look to be growing and something else has popped up. It could be weeds at this point but they are in a line right about where I planted swiss char. This is all good to know for next year.



Don't give your tomatoes too much fertilizer! You will have a lot of leaves but few tomatoes.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 15th, 2015, 2:08 pm 

The tomatoes in a large bucket (with good soil) are getting very tall with tomatoes happening down low and new flower in the taller areas. So far seems like the right balance of fruit to leaf. Two have grown out of the cages so I'll have to get some taller support. It is a bottle attachment that I fill the bottle with a high concentration of fertilizer, but it only feed a limited amount into the watering stream. So I don't think that will be a problem, but the lower leaves are turning yellow, so I may be giving them to much water.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Darby on July 15th, 2015, 4:42 pm 

Watson » July 15th, 2015, 2:08 pm wrote:The tomatoes in a large bucket (with good soil) are getting very tall with tomatoes happening down low and new flower in the taller areas. So far seems like the right balance of fruit to leaf. Two have grown out of the cages so I'll have to get some taller support. It is a bottle attachment that I fill the bottle with a high concentration of fertilizer, but it only feed a limited amount into the watering stream. So I don't think that will be a problem, but the lower leaves are turning yellow, so I may be giving them to much water.


Yellowing could be either too much water, or it could be blight/wilt from fungus or mites (something I get all the time). I use a spray like natria once a week when it appears in force, and it seems to help slow/limit the spread. I also meticulously trim away all wilted leaves and stems, to help slow the spread.

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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 15th, 2015, 5:29 pm 

Thanks, I'll have a closer look, but I have been watering more than I should considering they are in a big planter. They do drain but I haven't really given them a chance to dry out.

For next year, I have a cob of corn that dried past the point of eating it so I have let it dry further thinking I'll plant the kernels next spring. I know it is late now, but i'll plant a few and see if they germinate. I'm also going to try popping corn (doubtful) and celery seed from my spice rack. A lot of what I planted from seed has not come up. Even the strawberies seem to be doing well but no new fruit since the initial few.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Darby on September 9th, 2015, 6:24 pm 

Well, here in the northern hemisphere we're closing in on the end of the gardening season. My results for 2015:

> Tomato (Cherry, Sun Sugar): Yielded bountifully all season, but suffered somewhat from wilt/blight in the latter half. Will definitely replant next year. Excellent flavor, great eating out of hand, but the high sweetness can throw off some dishes.

> Tomato (Cherry, Husky Red): Yielded bountifully all season long, but even more prone to wilt than the sun sugars. Flavor is modest, and skins are sometimes a tad tough, but they're friendly to a wider array of dishes than the sun sugars.

> Tomato (Indigo Red): Took a long time to ripen, and were prone to splitting. Very pretty, but flavor is surprisingly weak. I used them as filler in tomato sauce, but they're disappointing in salads and out of hand. Also somewhat prone to wilt. I'll be replacing them with the updated Rutgers strain next year.

> Tomato (Yellow Pear): They're lovely to look at, low in acid, very bountiful, and delightfully resistant to blight, but they're also tied with the indigo reds for being the weakest tasting tomatoes I've ever grown. Useful for sauce filler, but that's it ... too weak for salads or sandwiches. I'll probably skip them next year.

> Hot Jalapenos: Wonderfully bountiful, and piquant ... and the fully ripe red ones taste even better. I'll double up on them next year, so I can make my pepper jellies of yore and have enough for stuffing and grilling and to give away to friends.

> Gypsy & Banana Peppers: The banana peppers were nice, but the gypsy peppers were meatier, a little sweeter, and more substantial, so I'll drop the latter and double the former.

> Egyptian Creeping Onions: I let them go to seed this year, in order to make as many bulbs as possible. I've since planted lots of small bulbs in a bunch of small planters, and they're already 8" tall. I'll plant them in the ground just before fall arrives in ernest, and come spring I should have a bumper crop, and I'll be able to enjoy both fronds and bulbs for cooking, and still have plenty to regift. Definite keepers.

New for next year:

> I might give soy beans (edamame) a try.

> If I can find seeds, I'm hoping to setup a trellis for Chinese Bitter Melon.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on September 9th, 2015, 6:36 pm 

Yes and we had hail that flattened my garden. I'm getting some dented tomatoes, potatoes, 2 small red peppers and a small squash the size of an apple, so far. Not a great yield.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Darby on September 18th, 2015, 12:22 pm 

I finally put all my sprouting cloves (about 35 plants) of Egyptian onions into the ground, and put another 20 cloves into five 8" planters to sprout for additional replanting. After starting last year with a single 5 clove bulb, I'm expecting a bumper crop next spring.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby tantric on September 19th, 2015, 2:27 pm 

i have cucumbers, eating pumpkins, giant pumpkins and squash of the yellow straightneck, pattypan and butternut varieties. i'm in NA->USA->GA and i tell y'all, when you plant such as i did for fall harvest SPRAY pesticide. my first crop got all et up with little green worms.

btw, what are pattypan/whitescallop squash supposed to taste like? surely not cardboard?
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Darby on September 19th, 2015, 6:15 pm 

I like the small pattypans, but the lone giant variety I tried was somewhat flavorless. In my experience, summer squash and zucchini are always tastiest when they're still fairly smallish (8-12" long). Havent really had enough sizes and varieties of pattypans to comment cogently.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby vivian maxine on September 20th, 2015, 7:16 am 

Braininvat » April 17th, 2015, 10:10 am wrote:Haha! I like the mental picture "rogue potato" gives me. Yeah, I have tried the biodiversity rationale for not weeding and mowing, but some anonymous neighbor narked on me to the city and I was given one week to mow or they would send a crew to do it and charge me a hefty price. Fascists.

seriously, I would like to someday, as time permits, rip up the non-native fescue and establish some hardy native groundcover (semi-arid climate here) that knows how to take care of itself.


Try clover. Our loving apartment property owners tore up our lovely yard (a necessity at the time) and then replaced it with a mix of grass and clover seed. I doubt the results were their intention but I am now calling for Dolly Madison's sheep. The clover won.

Addendum: I didn't read the entire three pages - work to do here. I do hope somebody plants turnips????
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Darby on September 20th, 2015, 2:46 pm 

Id love to plant heirloom beets and turnips, but my yard is tiny and my soil is sandy, shallow and poor quality (technical details: extremely young glacial outwash morraine, with thin sandy soil atop sandy till) so its planters or nadda, except for herbs with shallow roots or trees with wide shallow roots.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby vivian maxine on September 20th, 2015, 2:54 pm 

Darby » September 20th, 2015, 1:46 pm wrote:Id love to plant heirloom beets and turnips, but my yard is tiny and my soil is sandy, shallow and poor quality, so its planters or nadda, except for herbs with shallow roots.


I had a neighbor in an apartment building who had an orange tree. And it did bear fruit. On the seventh floor, plenty of sunshine. The newspaper once told of a man who had a banana tree. He put it outside every summer and brought it inside during winter. The news story was about him begging for someone to take it. It had grown too large to be brought inside. Then tomatoes, of course. Many folk grow tomatoes in planters. And spice gardens on window sills All that in MIssouri? Yep.

Good luck.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby BubbleGum on February 28th, 2016, 10:37 am 

In my mothers garden, I have tried to plant raspberries for the past five years… Normally they grow by themselves, but somehow, my mother manages killing them every year. I have already spent a lot of money for new plants, but this year, I wont make any effort… Hopefully some day, I will have my own garden, in which my raspberries will survive :P
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Braininvat on February 28th, 2016, 11:06 am 

Is she using some kind of weed killer that might be bad for berries? Perhaps you two should discuss? Are they getting watered enough, sun enough, etc. This is a science website, so people encourage a scientific approach and problem solving.
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Re: Going Wild

Postby Faradave on February 28th, 2016, 1:13 pm 

My neighbor bought some milkweed plants to supplement the dwindling wild population, upon which monarch butterfly larvae feed exclusively. He gave me a few of the seed pods and I'm now distributing hundreds of seeds in suitable patches along my jogging trail. I also planted a dozen in my own flower beds. Some seeds benefit from freezing to trigger later germination.
Image
Monarch caterpillar on milkweed pods.

The eggs should not be mistaken for aphids, which they can resemble. Milkweed has its own natural defenses, which benefit the monarchs. The caterpillars are big, creepy (literally) things but the result is well worth it.
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Re: Going Wild

Postby vivian maxine on February 28th, 2016, 2:14 pm 

Faradave » February 28th, 2016, 12:13 pm wrote:My neighbor bought some milkweed plants to supplement the dwindling wild population, upon which monarch butterfly larvae feed exclusively. He gave me a few of the seed pods and I'm now distributing hundreds of seeds in suitable patches along my jogging trail. I also planted a dozen in my own flower beds. Some seeds benefit from freezing to trigger later germination.
Image
Monarch caterpillar on milkweed pods.

The eggs should not be mistaken for aphids, which they can resemble. Milkweed has its own natural defenses, which benefit the monarchs. The caterpillars are big, creepy (literally) things but the result is well worth it.
Image



Quite a coincidence that this topic should arise now. Our March issue of Missouri Conservationist has two letters to the editor about a milkweed article in the January issue: "Homegrown Milkweed". One is a very long letter about the writer's farm in Saline County. They were right on the Monarch's migration trail Along the roadside and on their farm was a plentiful supply of milkweed where the monarchs feasted. That was in 1991. Now, 25 years later, no milkweed and rarely a monarch.

I do not know why he/she isn't planting milkweed but has been planting Asclepsias for twenty years Says it's a poor attempt to compensate for the loss of the milkweed and he has found no eggs.

I'll have to go online and read that again. It's been two months and I've forgotten much of it.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on February 28th, 2016, 2:50 pm 

I have been trying to get Milkweed established in my garden for the last two years. Last year it didn't come back where it was suppose to, but was several yards away in the lawn. I shall keep trying. It is common here as individual plants, so it is easy to get if you know what to look for. Now I'll be on the look out for the eggs and hopefully, caterpillar.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby vivian maxine on February 28th, 2016, 3:24 pm 

http://mdc.mo.gov/conmag/2016/01/homegrown-milkweeds

Don't know if it will help, given the distance, but maybe worth reading?
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on February 28th, 2016, 3:31 pm 

I saved a couple of my milkweed pods last fall, put them in a closed jar. They've opened and the seeds look healthy. Will try planting them in some new places. I have a small population of natives (kept secret back when they were considered noxious weeds by the same government that's now promoting them). They suffered some kind of blight three years ago, but have recovered. Even so, I didn't see more than two or three Monarchs all last summer. No Viceroys, either; very few coppers - not even the cabbage butterfly that used to rise up from our driveway in white clouds all through August. Fewer insects of all kinds.

I used to look forward to April when the nightly frog chorus usually begins... Now I dread the silence.

In the greenhouse, we have sparse spinach, languishing lettuce, slow squash seedlings and retarded radishes. Gave them fresh garden center potting soil and LED lights, heated floor under the water tanks... What more can they want, for heaven's sake!? Tomato seedlings are doing all right; peppers and cucumber finally coming up, and a very modest crop of peas about ready to harvest. I think we got on top of the aphids in time.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on February 28th, 2016, 3:32 pm 

duplicate
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on February 29th, 2016, 7:33 pm 

This just got twitted my way, and sounds encouraging for the Monarchs.


http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/f ... ign=buffer
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on February 29th, 2016, 10:53 pm 

Not a minute too soon! Let's hope, not a minute too late. Climate change is going to create further disruptions and habitat decline, but at least some people in power are finally aware that Things Are Connected.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby vivian maxine on March 1st, 2016, 6:34 am 

Watson » February 29th, 2016, 6:33 pm wrote:This just got twitted my way, and sounds encouraging for the Monarchs.


http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/f ... ign=buffer


Good news. Thank you, Watson
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