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~*Food Growing Mamas*~ March and April - Page 2

post #21 of 59

Hi ladies, is it okay if I join?  I am not currently gardening, but as soon as I get home I will be starting.  Well I guess you could kind of say I'm gardening now since I do help my aunt in her garden a lot while I am in Texas...but anyway I would love to talk and get advice if it's okay that I join. :)

post #22 of 59
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by John16n33 View Post

Hi ladies, is it okay if I join?  I am not currently gardening, but as soon as I get home I will be starting.  Well I guess you could kind of say I'm gardening now since I do help my aunt in her garden a lot while I am in Texas...but anyway I would love to talk and get advice if it's okay that I join. :)


Of course you can join!!  treehugger.gif

post #23 of 59
Thread Starter 

I finally started my seeds with some milk jugs from a fellow mama.  thumb.gif

post #24 of 59

I like that you can flip the tops back on those planters....

post #25 of 59
Im on my phone so I'll be quick. just wondering about the cheapest way to get decent soil. my soil is crap now.
post #26 of 59
I love the milk jug idea. Has anyone ever started their seedlings in eggshells? My first graders read about it last week and apparently you can stick the whole think in the ground since egg shells decompose so quickly.
post #27 of 59
Hi!!!!
It's been awhile!
Congrats on your family and pregnancy Farmer Cathy!

I've stuck my thumbs back in the soil and our garden is growing well this spring. A good friend is working with me for part of the harvest.

Right now we are growing chard, spinach, carrots, dwarf pak choi (that is leafy, but doesn't look right yet), cilantro, kale, mesclun, peas, beans, potatoes, tomatoes, basil, cukes. Sadly, the heat will snap most of the greens soon, except the chard! We are going to try Malabar Spinach. Last year was tough on the garden. Here is a pic of a tightly planted tomato, basil, cucumber and pansy bed. SFG says this is OK with indeterminate tomatoes, we have 8' stakes in there and plan to use shade cloth sometime in the summer.

edit: pardon my cardboard stash! smile.gif
post #28 of 59

I tried seedlings in eggshells last year but they didn't decompose as fast as I thought they would.  I just tilled my garden this year about 2 weeks ago and found big pieces of eggshell from last year in there.

post #29 of 59

Re cheapest soil -- (not quickest, but often free and very very good soil) manure/ animal litter/ bedding + straw + time. This year we fill our dug beds with cow pies (which the neighboring cattle so kindly donate when they break thru my fence on a regular basis) and pine straw (which is everwhere around here! I'd use grain straw if it were as cheap/free... it'll make my beds acid, so I may lime/ ash some for alkali lovers.) This year the crustiferous veggies will do great & from then on everything else will follow. For cheap + good + fast/ instant, idk, please post if you find anything!

 

Re eggshells-- they break down fastest in acidic soil. It hasn't worked well for me unless I break/ crush in the  bottom of the shell when I plant. Long term, it's great to add calcium to the soil, but for that, I usually powder the eggshells (if I can spare any from feeding them back to my hens or taking in caps myself-- they're good calcium for everyone!) I know if you set the eggshells in a tray of vinegar, they dissolve quickly, but I'd be afraid to expose tiny rootlets to the vinegar...

post #30 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by mum4vr View Post

This year the crustiferous veggies will do great & from then on everything else will follow.....

ROTFLMAO.gif"crustiferous": "cruciferous".  Fun.  I hope you don't mind my laughing.  You had me started at the cowpies...... biglaugh.gif

post #31 of 59

Thanks for the eggshell info!

 

I found a local place to order organic seedlings from on Oahu, although they only offer a few things that  I want.  I think I will try to visit them once I get back (they come from a big urban garden) to find out what grows good there and what doesn't.

post #32 of 59

HAHAHAHA... I -thought- I'd edited! Now, just don't tell my English students on me! bag.gif

 

In gardening news, we did -not- get anything more in last week. My potatoes are not up yet... hmmm; they should be by now, I think. We are saving milk jugs, tho & DS is excited about starting his Gold Medal tomatoes in them.


Edited by mum4vr - 4/8/13 at 11:37am
post #33 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by mum4vr View Post I usually powder the eggshells (if I can spare any from feeding them back to my hens or taking in caps myself-- they're good calcium for everyone!)


Huh!  We put all of our chickens' eggshells in the compost -- I never thought to capsulize them for us!  Now that is an interesting idea!

post #34 of 59
Thread Starter 

Hi Jess!!!  So good to see you!!

 

Sweet Silver - That is what I really like about them.  I can open them up when it starts getting warmer.  Waiting for it to warm up so that they start to sprout.

post #35 of 59

Yay!  Our growing season is short, so I'm still in planning phase.  I'm trying straw bale gardening this year - just 3 bales to start with and they're out and conditioning now.  Should be ready in another week or so for planting.  In the bales, I'm going to do tomatoes, japanese eggplant, cukes, carrots, beets and squash. nasturtiums and some herbs.  Then I'll have a bean teepee, trash can potatoes and some "salad bowls."  Kale will go in a separate raised bed. 

post #36 of 59

I put my first planting of potatoes in the ground today and covered the bed with netting to keep the birds and squirrels from digging in it.  I also netted the pea bed because it appears the birds are going after either the actual seeds or the sprouts irked.gif

 

I noticed some lettuce seedlings coming up, too.  Hoping they start coming in like gang busters because we need some lettuce and greens!!  My winter greens are bolting from the hot temps this week.  I'll probably pull them tomorrow and put buckwheat in the bed til I figure out what's going in there next.

 

I'm not having very good luck with my winter sown tomatoes.  Our temps have been in the 80s during the day this week and 50s at night, so I uncapped them and have been leaving them uncapped.  Some have germinated, most have not headscratch.gif  My inside peppers just aren't germinating and only 2 of my eggplant seeds sprouted.  I don't seem to have very good luck with the really warm weather crops.shake.gif

 

I keep checking on my carrots and radish seed and I'm getting nothing.  I think either the birds ate the seeds or the slugs are eating the new sprouts.  If I don't see anything by the weekend, I'll be doing another planting *sigh*

post #37 of 59

Oh, slugs are eating everything here, it seems.  We are surrounded by Pacific Northwest forest, and the armies of slugs are in full force.  But something else is nipping off all our pea shots.  They are germinating well, but get nipped off when they are about 2" high.  We planted more, both in the ground and in pots just in case.  The fava beans are doing quite well.  DH planted kale and broccoli in pots for transplanting.

post #38 of 59

FillingMyQuiver, I've stuggled with peppers and eggplants as well. Last year was the ONLY year we had success, but it was a roaring success. I started them in recycled clear plastic cups next to my chick brooder-- they had 1/2 the heat and light from the chick lamp. Worked great for a happy accident! My tomatoes were behind/ further from heat than the peppers & eggplant & also did far better than usual. Some swear by a heating pad under a wool blanket under a seed tray...

 

SweetSilver, is it cut worms maybe?

post #39 of 59

hello, may i join you ?

i'm in Europe and had a friend send me a packet of Kale seeds & have planted a few seeds in a pot on my balcony today , am hoping to harvest young leaves for salad since the local production of spinach is going to stop shortly

tonight when coming home, i spotted a three leg narrow and high wicker basket type planter next to a refuse bin and took it home, i had just remembered that i had baught purslane seeds & will sow them at the week end

 

i also need to find another container for some spring onions

i live on a 4th floor flat ( so far from the ground, & anyway it's all tarmac and no apparent soil ) and am looking at other ideas about what edible plants i could try planting ...

post #40 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by mum4vr View Post

 

SweetSilver, is it cut worms maybe?

I've wondered that myself, but I know that cutworms' hallmarks are the bites not-quite-all-the-way-across the stem.  I see these frequently with tulips.  These were sheared off entirely, but the tops left alone.  So maybe?  I just hope that it is something like a caterpillar, because then I can wait out its development.  This spring, once again, is long and slow, so I have lots of time for peas still.

 

Here's a ladder's-eye view of the new veggie garden.  That's the chicken coop-- source of much wonderful compost, now conveniently located where I need it!

 

 

 We have it divided, with the chickens currently in 1/3 of it, behind the little shelter.  The fence is not tall enough to keep a determined chicken in, but they all panic if they fly out, so we don't have a problem with it.  So far, there's enough food outside the fence and nothing in that will tempt a deer.  Yet.  Behind the wheelbarrow is our tiny rhubarb clump and some garden sorrel, plus some native plants that need moving.

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