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Gardening: the 2013 season

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  • #41
    Originally posted by S1969 View Post
    I put two gooseberries in last year; so far have only gotten 2 berries so it's hard to know if they taste like I remember from my grandmother's farm. I don't recall them having those huge thorns! Maybe I never did the picking!
    Yup - those huge thorns. I remember them well. And I totally envy you those two berries!!!

    Comment


    • #42
      Can someone advise me on the use of the stall waste in the raised beds?
      A little more info:
      Last year with put a thin layer of old stall waste on the bottom and filled up with bags of garden soil from home depot. Since fall when stuff started to die out I would put the older stall waste (you know when the shavings are really broken down not the huge flakes anymore) straight into the bed. I have all the beds full and looking fabulous. My DH says that the it is too fresh and nothing will grow this spring. I have been turning them occasionally to further compost what is in there, and added if I thought it looked a bit on the empty side.
      Should I add anything (nutrients)? Will anything grow?

      Comment


      • #43
        DH is wrong. Poor thing.

        Barn compost is perfectly usable 6 to 12 months after being piled/composted. I've been using it for DECADES, with wonderful results in both in-ground & in deck containers. So long as the product is well broken down & smells like good earth, the time frame means NOTHING.

        Hopefully you made a good bet with DH re: this, because you won.

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        • #44
          DH is wrong. Poor thing.

          Barn compost is perfectly usable 6 to 12 months after being piled/composted. I've been using it for DECADES, with wonderful results in both in-ground & in deck containers. So long as the product is well broken down & smells like good earth, the time frame means NOTHING.

          Hopefully you made a good bet with DH re: this, because you won.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #45
            Originally posted by Katy9532 View Post
            Can someone advise me on the use of the stall waste in the raised beds?
            A little more info:
            Last year with put a thin layer of old stall waste on the bottom and filled up with bags of garden soil from home depot. Since fall when stuff started to die out I would put the older stall waste (you know when the shavings are really broken down not the huge flakes anymore) straight into the bed. I have all the beds full and looking fabulous. My DH says that the it is too fresh and nothing will grow this spring. I have been turning them occasionally to further compost what is in there, and added if I thought it looked a bit on the empty side.
            Should I add anything (nutrients)? Will anything grow?
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cold_frame (go to Hot Bed)

            fresh, steaming manure is put in the bottom of the frame, then covered with soil. after a week or so uncovered, you put glass over it and you can start your seedlings early.
            This is how Jefferson did it, and all the gardeners, down to my grandma and my aunt: In January/February the hot bed is loaded with fresh, steaming horse manure! (Ok, it works like a charm with straw bedding/deep liter, not sure how pine works)

            In a gardening book I read about putting fresh road apples on the top of potted trees in the fall, it being beneficial through the winter.


            but yeah, after 6-12 month on the pile, it's good to go!

            Comment


            • #46
              Originally posted by Katy9532 View Post
              I don't think mine will get anywhere near 6 hrs of sun. They will only get a few hrs of morning sun.
              I find the plants get really spindly with that little sun and take twice as long to produce half as many potatoes that are a fraction of the size. That said, they are awfully tasty little critters, extremely tender and just bursting with lovely potato taste... not to mention digging for potatoes is so much fun no matter how few or how small... so I say go for it!
              Being terrible at something is the first step to being truly great at it. Struggle is the evidence of progress.

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              • #47
                Originally posted by Bacardi1 View Post
                DH is wrong. Poor thing.

                Barn compost is perfectly usable 6 to 12 months after being piled/composted. I've been using it for DECADES, with wonderful results in both in-ground & in deck containers. So long as the product is well broken down & smells like good earth, the time frame means NOTHING.

                Hopefully you made a good bet with DH re: this, because you won.
                This may be a little younger than 6 months. Guess we will see how well they grow!!!! Bless his heart!

                Comment


                • #48
                  Originally posted by buck22 View Post
                  I find the plants get really spindly with that little sun and take twice as long to produce half as many potatoes that are a fraction of the size. That said, they are awfully tasty little critters, extremely tender and just bursting with lovely potato taste... not to mention digging for potatoes is so much fun no matter how few or how small... so I say go for it!
                  Well I just bought 5lbs to plant around! I have the large load behind my barn, and a few other spots that I pile it up. I'm sure somewhere I will get some good poop potatoes!!!

                  Comment


                  • #49
                    Originally posted by Katy9532 View Post
                    This may be a little younger than 6 months. Guess we will see how well they grow!!!! Bless his heart!
                    I've used manure that's set a LOT less than 6 months... with mixed results. I put it in the beds, put straw or old hay over it, and let it sit for a few months. With good rain, it broke down well and was usable. Maybe I got lucky.
                    Visit us at Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society - www.bluebonnetequine.org

                    Want to get involved in rescue or start your own? Check out How to Start a Horse Rescue - www.howtostartarescue.com

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                    • #50
                      Came home to two wonderful packages today - some seed starting supplies from Jung's and a ton of seeds from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds. I still need to order seed potatoes, sweet potato slips, onions, and leeks. And I forgot to order some herbs and banana pepper seeds, so I'll do that.

                      But the planting will commence! Going to be sowing lettuce, spinach, kale, and some other stuff tomorrow. And we'll be putting in some more raised beds tomorrow and I'll be digging up the nice, composted manure to use in those beds. Ah, gardening bliss begins!
                      Visit us at Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society - www.bluebonnetequine.org

                      Want to get involved in rescue or start your own? Check out How to Start a Horse Rescue - www.howtostartarescue.com

                      Comment


                      • #51
                        I'm going smaller this year. I seeded over the veggie garden last fall and am going to stick some veggies in with the flowers. Between work, a husband, two horses, a pony, dogs and a rental property to care for, I just don't have time for a big veggie garden. Being in Florida if you don't keep after the weeds, bugs (I'm Organic as much as possible) and water amounts your garden is soon taken over. Besides, all my friends with big gardens love to give me their extras!

                        I did plant a bulb garden beside the new shed. Tried sticking the bottom of a celery stalk in with a potted plant (got that off Pinterest) and it does totally work! So I'm gonna try more "garbage growing" along with my composting.

                        Also starting a new walkway from the front porch to the cars (don't really have a driveway yet) with the layered newspaper technique. I'll lay payers or stones once the grass is gone.

                        If only I could retire. I could play all day.....
                        Groom to trainer: "Where's the glamour? You promised me glamour!"

                        Comment


                        • #52
                          I'm so jealous of all of you who are already taking "spring" planting. My garden is still covered in snow. Guess I should be happy that it is only ankle deep and not the normal waist deep or more we usually have at this time of year. We do have spinach up under the snow and ready to take off once spring finally arrives - in a few months. The winter has been mild enough that we still had fresh broccoli at New Years day and one last salad from under the snow. Fresh potatoes, carrots, onions, and leek are all stored in the root cellar (aka the insulated, but barely heated tack room. Clever how I got DH & friend to build that.) Lots of other goodies in the freezer, so really we're eating very well.

                          To answer a few of you - raised beds with composted manure are THE best! When we moved to the farm 4 years ago, I filled 6 beds with fresh stall cleanings in the fall. By spring they were ready to be planted. We seed pretty close (not exactly square foot method, but do fill the beds), so no/minimal weeds to contend with. Those 6 4x8 beds are enough to feed a family of 4; can, freeze, and still supply the neighbors now & then. Onions & potatoes have their own little plots. Strawberries & brambles are on trickle, so just a matter of turning on the H2O. Other berries & herbs are worked into the edible landscape.

                          As the raised beds have settled, we refilled in the fall with composted manure. Of course "the boys" easily keep our 2 bins stocked. DH build me 2 nice permanent 12x16 bins on a slab for "early" Christmas last year. Soooo nice! (Guess I should leave town more often, if that's what happens when I go.) I wouldn't recommend using fresh manure directly on the beds or around plants. The ammonia is too concentrated and will burn plants badly. Also the decomposition process actually pulls needed nitrogen away from the plants. Composted 6 months or so it's great though - almost black gold - the nutrients have been broken down to available forms and if you use pelleted bedding the organic matter content/manure mix is near perfect!

                          For a little brag, if I may, see here for an early morning view of the garden beds:
                          http://www.thegoodstuffguide.com/garden-dream/

                          I don't want to run amuck of the mods, but if you read the comments, you may get some hints toward answering a lot of your other edible garden questions, such as the gooseberry/currant one.

                          As for the gooseberry/black currant question; yes white pine blister rust can be a concern, but for the most part a very minor one. Some states still have old laws on the books from the days when the lumber industry needed to be protected. Very few enforce those laws, although nurseries may refuse to ship to those states to cover their hindends.

                          Today there are disease resistant fruit varieties that can be planted as well as fungicides that can control the rust. Also, if the currants are planted a sufficient distance from the white pines the disease cycle is short circuited because the rust needs to infest both plants at different stages to survive.

                          Comment


                          • #53
                            Originally posted by fjordmom View Post



                            As for the gooseberry/black currant question; yes white pine blister rust can be a concern, but for the most part a very minor one. Some states still have old laws on the books from the days when the lumber industry needed to be protected. Very few enforce those laws, although nurseries may refuse to ship to those states to cover their hindends.

                            Today there are disease resistant fruit varieties that can be planted as well as fungicides that can control the rust. Also, if the currants are planted a sufficient distance from the white pines the disease cycle is short circuited because the rust needs to infest both plants at different stages to survive.
                            Yes, I've heard that there are now rust-resistant varieties out there, but since I already go thru yearly problems with Cedar-Apple rust, I'm leery to possibly introduce yet something else to have to deal with.

                            Currants do pop up at some of the markets around here; gooseberries less so. Will just have to keep my eyes (& wallet) open.

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #54
                              Originally posted by Bacardi1 View Post
                              Yes, I've heard that there are now rust-resistant varieties out there, but since I already go thru yearly problems with Cedar-Apple rust, I'm leery to possibly introduce yet something else to have to deal with.

                              Currants do pop up at some of the markets around here; gooseberries less so. Will just have to keep my eyes (& wallet) open.
                              well, teh problem is that these plants can be carrier. meaning they don't get it, but can spread the rust.

                              Comment


                              • #55
                                Originally posted by Alagirl View Post
                                well, teh problem is that these plants can be carrier. meaning they don't get it, but can spread the rust.
                                I have no intention of buying plants - I'm talking about just buying the fruit.

                                Comment


                                • #56
                                  ARgh. My limbs ache for dirt.

                                  This week temperatures are predicated to fall below zero Fahrenheit.

                                  Blah.

                                  We plant some stuff at home, but also "co-op" with my parents. They have an enormous vegetable garden, but don't have the time to keep up with it and then they end up throwing stuff away.

                                  We do always end up with a mega-weed-battle at my parents. Anyone have any suggestions? We tried straw last year and it helped, then it sprouted. My mother likes to put down newspapers, and weigh it down with rocks. Other locals say using the black plastic with soaker hoses is the only way to do it.

                                  Can anyone recommend a soil testing kit? I know we have acidic soil, since we're in NE, but I have no idea if there is anything else I should be adding. My SO is fertilizer happy, as well, and I feel like he puts way too much on.

                                  Comment


                                  • #57
                                    Oy vey!! Do I have to start thinking about the garden already?!?!? I just cut open my last spaghetti squash yesterday.

                                    What will I plant? I am a negligent grower. I pop a bunch of stuff in the ground and hopefully it grows. I loved the heirloom tomatoes last year (lovely yellow/red and purple/red things) but they take forever to ripen. So maybe some industrial tomatoes this year too.

                                    Need to put the peas in earlier. More wax beans. Zucchini, acorn, maybe butternut squash. I love the HOT peppers. They are the only plants the bugs don't touch !! And a bush of jalapenos is very pretty!! This year I mostly dried them out and put them in the coffee grinder. My own homemade hot pepper powder! Cucumbers usually do okay. Last year I did well with a basil plant. And we have spearmint which is such a weed I have to hack at it regularly.

                                    I made several envelopes of my own seeds last year, so we'll see if any of those can be persuaded to produce.
                                    "Friend" me !

                                    http://www.facebook.com/isabeau.solace

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                                    • #58
                                      "If I can anything, I would can salsa or straight tomatoes. We love salsa. I have seriously considered getting a job at Chevy's to discover their salsa recipe. I know it is roasted and I love it."


                                      The Chevy's recipe is online, just google it! the customer service gal who helped me track down a tomato shark (great in theory but not in practice I found) told me about it. We made a bunchon the grill last autumn and froze it. Maybe we'll do Mexican for diner tonight;-)

                                      sorry, I haven't gotten the hang of the quote feature!
                                      Last edited by thathorse; Jan. 19, 2013, 07:02 PM. Reason: clarifying
                                      Real Horses. Real Riders. Real Results! www.wvhorsetrainer.com

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                                      • #59
                                        Originally posted by fjordmom View Post
                                        For a little brag, if I may, see here for an early morning view of the garden beds:
                                        http://www.thegoodstuffguide.com/garden-dream/
                                        Beautiful pictures!!! And yes, the fog makes it more awesome!

                                        We put in four 4x8 raised beds last year but will add two to the left side of this grouping:

                                        http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a2...D550/ry%3D400/

                                        It really is amazing how the raised beds make everything more manageable. Maybe partly just because you can say "I'm going to weed THIS garden before breakfast" and accomplish it, vs. saying "I'm going to WEED"...which can be very daunting!

                                        We have three 3x6 beds against our garage (one still filled with beets under the snow!) that I am hoping to make cold frames for next month or so...

                                        http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a2...D550/ry%3D400/

                                        Has anyone built cold frames, and do you have any tips? I had thought about trying to get old windows or glass doors last year but didn't find anything, and then decided they might be too heavy and/or brittle. A friend made a simple one with a frame that just held plastic that rolled back, and I decided I was trying too hard. So I am trying to decide -- pvc hoops, or actual wooden "frames"...maybe with thick plastic instead of glass...? Anyone have any ideas?

                                        Another project I would like to accomplish this year is a 2nd manure composting bunker....one that we could use more for gardening v. simply getting rid of manure & wood pellets. I'd like it to be more of the manure and old hay and minimal wood pellets -- so manure pickings from pastures and paddocks would all go in there, and no urine-soaked pellets from the stalls.

                                        Well, the planning keeps me busy in the winter. Not sure it will get accomplished come spring....

                                        No one has planted amaranth or quinoa, though?

                                        Comment


                                        • #60
                                          Originally posted by Isabeau Z Solace View Post
                                          I just cut open my last spaghetti squash yesterday.
                                          OH NO!!!!! I forgot to put spaghetti squash on my seed order yesterday!!!!!

                                          Comment

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