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Gardening 2020

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  • angelssix
    replied
    I just started my seeds, the marigolds are already sprouting! I am starting my tomatoes, some chili peppers, and green onions now. I will be starting my later stuff around March.

    Leave a comment:


  • firefoot
    replied
    I am SO excited about gardening this year as I'm finally graduated and might actually have some time on the weekends to work outside. I have several planting projects including planting as many trees as possible in one acre of the yard, cleaning up flower beds in front of the house, planting some barrier shrubs by the road and along the fence, and hopefully putting in a small veggie garden. Thinking cucumbers, tomatoes, peas, herbs ... My husband doesn't eat vegetables so I really shouldn't go overboard. I've had wonderful herb gardens in the past and would love to have that again. Seems like potatoes might be a good thing to try.

    We'll see, though -- my primary goal is planting all those trees and cleaning up the flower beds/adding more native plants for the wild bird populations. I have tons of irises and peonies to divide, also, and I got several packages of bulbs the other day. Finally had the foresight to buy things that bloom in the summer -- I have tons of things that bloom early-late spring but come July the only flowers I have are weeds.

    This might sound like a really stupid question but what do I need to do with my chicken and horse poop to use it in the garden? I usually just buy soil amendments and compost but I have eight chickens and two horses (one bedded in straw, one in pine shavings) and I feel like I should use it if I can, I just don't know the proper protocol.

    Leave a comment:


  • NancyM
    replied
    Originally posted by TheJenners View Post



    NancyM how do you store your seed potatoes so they don't sprout while waiting to be planted? I wanted to do two plantings but when I went to get the rest of my seed potatoes out of my dark, coolish (60s?) pantry, they were all sprouted already. Sad! I worry my garage will be too damp? boxes with sawdust? Would shavings be ok? Also, thanks for the tip, ordering the French Fingerlings as well! I already ordered a bunch of blues and reds
    LOL sprouting happens, and it's OK. We still eat them at that time of year, just brush the small sprouts off, and as long as they are good and firm, they are just the same to eat. The key is to stop them from freezing, which will turn them to mush, kill them. When they sprout in storage, you just plant them sprouted, no problem. Just position them accurately, sprouts up. They are just getting started with the next years growth, which is your plan anyway. Potatoes "know" when it is springtime, and have an opinion on when planting time is (they may be a bit previous sometimes, but they can overwinter just fine too, if left in the ground, even in our area!). So listen to your potatoes! Even potatoes that have partially frozen, and are partially mush, as long as they have part of the flesh with some "eyes" still good, and sprout from there, they can still be used as seed potatoes. I over winter mine in my tack room because I keep a bit of heat in there, for my tack and supplies, just above freezing. But this year, it did get cold, like substantially cold, overnight (-35C) and I didn't have enough heat going. I got some potatoes frozen as a result, those who were not well buried in the sawdust. Those are mush now, dead. But those who were buried better in the sawdust in the bins did survive just fine. The sawdust (or shavings) supply insulation, and is nice and dry. If your garage is OK for storage depends on how cold you get in your area, and moisture in the air, if they freeze, they are ruined. They will sprout, in time, if you don't spray them with chemicals that keep them from sprouting, like the commercial potatoes are sprayed.

    On the subject of commercially grown potatoes, and the spraying that goes on, we drive by a farm who had 100 +- acres planted in potatoes, a commercial crop. They spray with a herbicide (round up?) to kill off green leaves, so that they can use a commercial harvester machine to dig potatoes. Then they are sprayed again, to keep them from sprouting in the store. Yikes. Those "firm and unsprouted" potatoes you see in the grocery store in springtime are NOT in a "natural" state. One potato farmer dying of cancer who was interviewed was SURE it was what he was exposed to in his farming practices. I suspect he was right.

    When my potatoes sprout too much, and want to get planted, I eat brown rice instead. And even though I don't trust what is done to that crop either, it's better than what is done to commercial potatoes.

    Leave a comment:


  • TheJenners
    replied
    Why did you give up on spinach and brussel sprouts?

    Leave a comment:


  • outerbanks77
    replied
    Gardening is my second favorite hobby after horses! Just tonight we had homegrown spaghetti squash and homegrown canned tomatoes as part of dinner.

    This will be our tenth year in our house, and the vegetable garden has matured to nearly where I want it. I have about 4, 4x12' beds and several other assorted raised beds, one of which is filled with perennial herbs, one with raspberries, and one with horseradish, strawberries and a few asparagus.

    This weekend I started 2 72-cell flats with peppers and a few eggplants. I'll start greens/cole crops next weekend, and tomatoes probably the weekend after that.

    Towards the end of March will be direct-sowing root crops, then the rest of the stuff will go outside around May 1, including squash, cucumbers, green beans and okra. We can grow pretty much anything here, but I've given up on spinach and Brussel's sprouts, and of course it's too cold for citrus. For fruit, I have the raspberries, a semi-tart cherry, and two apple trees.

    Leave a comment:


  • Mango20
    replied
    My neighbor gave me some garlic plants last year. I drove around with them in the back of my truck for a couple of hours before planting them (and they were about 2' tall). They all seemed to die off due to that not really being the way to do it. But, I left them undisturbed, and now they are growing again! They are about 3" high right now. I saw three little spring onion sprouts coming up where I planted onions last year. I also have some kale that survived the winter, but I'll be pulling it out and starting over. I need to order some seeds, and see what I have left over from last year. I know I have some onion sets in the refrigerator, and I think I have some bean seeds. I always plant my old seeds and see what comes up. I'll plant them a little thicker, and they usually do okay.

    I've been intrigued by the feed sack potatoes for a few years but haven't actually tried it yet. Maybe this will be the year. I've planted them in the garden directly some years, but with low yields because my soil is filled with small shale rocks. I'll have tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, yellow squash, onions, garlic, lettuce, spinach, kale, okra, carrots, radishes, peas, snow peas, and beans. Maybe potatoes.

    Leave a comment:


  • TheJenners
    replied
    Originally posted by Obsidian Fire View Post
    EVneo please advise your method of planting potatoes in your old feed bags! I would love to know!!
    I did this last year, it worked "ok" but depending on your feed bags, mine started tearing apart before harvest! So I ordered actual potato bags to use in conjunction with feed bags this year. The ones that did best were the TC Senior bags, hardier plastic and already had a hole from cutting the proof of purchase off the bottom

    NancyM how do you store your seed potatoes so they don't sprout while waiting to be planted? I wanted to do two plantings but when I went to get the rest of my seed potatoes out of my dark, coolish (60s?) pantry, they were all sprouted already. Sad! I worry my garage will be too damp? boxes with sawdust? Would shavings be ok? Also, thanks for the tip, ordering the French Fingerlings as well! I already ordered a bunch of blues and reds

    Leave a comment:


  • Heinz 57
    replied
    Originally posted by Obsidian Fire View Post
    Heinz 57 try some Mini Munch cucumbers. You will love them! No need to even peel, and little one can eat right out of the garden too.
    Slightly ashamed to admit I don't really like cucumbers at all.

    Leave a comment:


  • Seagram
    replied
    EVneo, what a neat idea! Very practical too!! I think I will try this with some potatoes this summer.

    Leave a comment:


  • EVneo
    replied
    Originally posted by Obsidian Fire View Post
    EVneo please advise your method of planting potatoes in your old feed bags! I would love to know!!
    Of course! I cut some holes in the bottoms of the bags, just little "x's", about 4 on each side of the seam - I might do a few more up the side of the bag, if it's especially rainy or notice they're bogged down. Roll down the side of the bag, so that you have enough room for a foot of soil - stick your little seed potatoes (or even chitted grocery store potatoes - I cut mine into chunks that have 2 sprouted eyes) a few inches down. I fit about 8 chunks in each bag. Then, as the plant grows up, once it hits a foot or two, I just unroll the bag and add more soil so the plant is just sticking out a few inches, and repeat until you run out of bag to unroll! I'm in Northern Ohio, and I usually get mine planted in their bags in late April and harvest in October - the plants will die back when they're ready. The fun part is digging through the dirt to find them! I either dump the bag into a wheelbarrow or the garden if it's cleared for the season.

    Leave a comment:


  • Obsidian Fire
    replied
    EVneo please advise your method of planting potatoes in your old feed bags! I would love to know!!

    Leave a comment:


  • EVneo
    replied
    This is what I'm doing on my lunch breaks this week! I just started making an effort to turn my manure pile so that it's composted well some spring. We're still under snow here, but spring has to come - it just has to! I think I finally have viable garlic - the last few years, I did it in raised boxes on the deck, but the boxes retained so much water with the snow that it rotted the garlic - last fall I put them in my garden and they seem to be doing much better! I need to start my tomatoes and peppers (ghost, carolina reaper, trinidad scorpion, and some kinder chilis and jalapenos). I did san marsazno and beefsteak tomatoes last year, but think I want to toy around with some cherry or heirloom varieties this year. I think I'll do my squash (zucc, yellow, pumpkins) in pallet beds this year. I have one area that gets great sun and a lot of water from the yard draining - last year I did sunflowers that grew to 10ft, but had empty seed hulls. I think I'm going to try corn in place this year. I also want to do more carrots, maybe multi colored? Potatoes, too! I always just plant them in old feed bags - it's too much work to mound them in the ground - I'd rather just unroll and fill a feed bag that I can just dump over at the end of the season. Lots of greens, too. I needed this thread today!

    Leave a comment:


  • Obsidian Fire
    replied
    Heinz 57 try some Mini Munch cucumbers. You will love them! No need to even peel, and little one can eat right out of the garden too.

    Leave a comment:


  • Heinz 57
    replied
    I have not yet made up my mind as to whether I have time for a garden this year but I have seed catalogs coming out of my ears, and I so enjoy picking through them. I've had good success starting seeds indoors but it's so hard to time transplanting when late spring weather is so variable here.

    I have plenty of space, probably at least a third of an acre I could devote entirely to vegetables, and good thing too - overboard is my middle name when it comes to gardening!

    I think I will try to stick to things I can preserve and that will truly get eaten; sauce tomatoes, potatoes, green beans, and corn top that list. Perhaps some varieties of peppers, too. We use a lot of onions but I've never had good luck with them. DH bought me the pressure canner I've been wanting for Valentine's day, so now I have no excuses!

    Leave a comment:


  • NancyM
    replied
    Originally posted by Obsidian Fire View Post
    NancyM I found them!! At “Maine Potato Lady” website. I may have to order!!
    I don't think you will be disappointed in them LOL! Try steaming them instead of boiling... magnificent!!! I choose the little ones for this treatment.

    Leave a comment:


  • Seagram
    replied
    Love this topic! My daughter and I just spent the afternoon going through my seed collection, planning what we want to grow this year, and plotting how to keep the chickens out! We have way too many seed packets, think at least 50 varieties of tomatoes alone, with dozens and dozens of different annuals and perennials, tons of veggies and herbs!
    Chickens are extremely fond of any leafy green plant, such as spinach, romaine lettuce, etc... so keeping them out of the garden once they know the bounty is in there can be difficult. I am an unrepentant seed collector too, if I see a plant that I like with seed, I'll pop it in my pocket to package up.

    Leave a comment:


  • Obsidian Fire
    replied
    NancyM I found them!! At “Maine Potato Lady” website. I may have to order!!

    Leave a comment:


  • NancyM
    replied
    Totally YES on the potato question. I grow them here "semi commercially". That is, I grow lots, and offer them for sale locally. My favourate variety these days is one that was given to me by a very old local lady who gave me 2 potatoes that someone had sent her, so I am not SURE of it's true identity but I suspect that they are "French Fingerling" potatoes... they have red skin, and yellow flesh, sometimes with a red ribbon through the flesh, and tend to be smaller, and oval, very sweet and nutty and moist. Except sometimes they do get big too! I think that they are a very old variety, a "heritage" variety. Have NEVER seen them offered as seed potatoes, and not normally offered commercially. They are the best tasting potatoes I have ever tried. I was won over right away, with the first crop of three plants, which produced a huge number of potatoes. I have kept seed every year since then, and have planted about 1/4 acre of them. They are a bit late maturing, so I grow a few Norlands and/or Caribes as well, mostly as early potatoes, and to get some BIG ones, just for fun. Biggest one last year was over 2 lbs- I weighed it. I store the crop in my tack room, packed in boxes with sawdust. I've grown some Russian Blues sometimes, they are too dry for my taste, but some of my clients really like them. We are still eating potatoes from last year's crop. I donate some to needy causes, sell some, and we eat a lot of potatoes. I am so spoiled by our own potatoes that I can't eat store bought potatoes any more, so sour and tasteless!! And I hate the crap they spray onto them. Potatoes (and their cousin, tomatoes) are about the only thing I can grow outside my deer fenced garden LOL. Although, the deer have discovered that the potatoes are under the ground, and dig them up and eat some of them, the buggars. Don't get me wrong, I love the deer, and many are quite tame. But they DO eat just about everything.

    Leave a comment:


  • Obsidian Fire
    replied
    Does anyone grow potatoes?? What's your favorite?

    Recently I've been growing some of the newer "fun" varieties. One I grew last year was purple skin but yellow flesh. It started out slow but once it got growing it really over-produced. I'll have plenty from "leftovers" this year! Masquerade is the name.

    I've also grown fingerlings like Russian Banana.

    Anyone else?

    Leave a comment:


  • TheJenners
    replied
    Originally posted by Cynical25 View Post

    Once all my indoor started seedlings have decent "true leaves," I turn on an oscillating fan or two - they grow much stronger in the breeze and fare better when hardening off. I live on a VERY windy property and need sturdy plants, lol.
    What a GREAT idea!!

    Leave a comment:

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