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Originally Posted by FarmerCathy View Post
You can always add fish emulsion pellets a couple days after transplant and when they start to bloom. I think that's what Lanna's tomato guy said.

Yeah, that's about right. Easy enough for us lazy folk.
 

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So on a whim yesterday I added a about 4 feet by 15 feet section to my garden. I just added it on the back.
Now I will for sure have room for the ground cherries and umm lots more too. Its all pretty and ready for planting!

Also noticed yesterday that a lot of my potatoes are up, the peas are doing wonderful, the carrots are up, leeks are up, radishes are of course up and really need thinned.
:

I can't remember where I planted my cabbage though so not sure if its up or not. I have two rows that look like lettuce or mesclun but I could have sworn one was cabbage. Need to go search to see what cabbage sprouts look like as I have never grown it before.

Anyone have any advice on growing zinnias? I love them and cannot grow them for the life of me. In fact I pretty much suck at growing any flower except sunflowers and marigolds. Every year I plant them they never grow, or maybe I weed them out thinking they are a weed. I think I may just see if I can find some plants instead of seed this year.
 

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AllisonK, I almost pulled up 30+ marigold sprouts thinking they were a weed. Luckily I had a niggling feeling I was forgetting something, cuz it seemed weird that the weeds were growing in a square.


I refuse to weed until all my seeds have sprouted high enough that I can tell what they are, which will be at least two weeks from now.
 

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Originally Posted by CultivatingMyRoots View Post
Ewww! Fish heads!

How come you don't have to compost them first? I feel like people make a HUGE deal about not putting meat in compost, so burying fish heads seems counterintuitive....
It's what the native americans would do. Fish decompose quickly and don't have a lot of virus' and stuff land animals have. That being said I wouldn't put fish in your compost bin.

Quote:

Originally Posted by AllisonK View Post
So on a whim yesterday I added a about 4 feet by 15 feet section to my garden. I just added it on the back.
Now I will for sure have room for the ground cherries and umm lots more too. Its all pretty and ready for planting!

Also noticed yesterday that a lot of my potatoes are up, the peas are doing wonderful, the carrots are up, leeks are up, radishes are of course up and really need thinned.
:

I can't remember where I planted my cabbage though so not sure if its up or not. I have two rows that look like lettuce or mesclun but I could have sworn one was cabbage. Need to go search to see what cabbage sprouts look like as I have never grown it before.

Anyone have any advice on growing zinnias? I love them and cannot grow them for the life of me. In fact I pretty much suck at growing any flower except sunflowers and marigolds. Every year I plant them they never grow, or maybe I weed them out thinking they are a weed. I think I may just see if I can find some plants instead of seed this year.
Hmmm... Not sure why your having trouble with zinnia's. I do zinnia's almost every year. They are really easy and love the summer heat. How far down are you planting them?
 

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Originally Posted by FarmerCathy View Post

Hmmm... Not sure why your having trouble with zinnia's. I do zinnia's almost every year. They are really easy and love the summer heat. How far down are you planting them?
I don't remember. Whatever it says on the back of the seed packet.
One year I had gorgeous zinnias and had not even planted any. The seeds from the planting the previous year grew. It was kind of funny. That was in Cheney, WA and its really warm there. Been here in SW WA (rain rain and more rain) for three years now and have not had a zinnia since.
I have not planted any yet this year but might still. I have seeds but am just discouraged with them.
 

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Originally Posted by AllisonK View Post
I don't remember. Whatever it says on the back of the seed packet.
One year I had gorgeous zinnias and had not even planted any. The seeds from the planting the previous year grew. It was kind of funny. That was in Cheney, WA and its really warm there. Been here in SW WA (rain rain and more rain) for three years now and have not had a zinnia since.
I have not planted any yet this year but might still. I have seeds but am just discouraged with them.

Sounds like not enough heat to germinate. I would start them inside in 6 packs and plant them outside. They only take like 3 days to germinate so it shouldn't take long. Or you could probably start them with the winter sowing method.
Good luck!
 

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Originally Posted by FarmerCathy View Post
Hmmm... Not sure why your having trouble with zinnia's. I do zinnia's almost every year. They are really easy and love the summer heat. How far down are you planting them?
Um yeah, I was going to add that her weather is pretty cool and steady. Not near the temperature variety that say, you or I have.

Maybe look at cloches or something for a little bit?

Me? Been so productive despite the lack of husband (he came incredibly close to quitting on Friday afternoon - you know that saying 'you give an inch they take a mile'? They've literally taken our lives and almost our family...) and with the kidlets underfoot.

Today I got the blueberry and blackberry bed weeded. Threw a few bags of pine needles on the blueberries. Need to figure out what I'm going to mulch the blackberries with though... Also planted a few rows of Laxton peas because I felt like it, and figured the 5.5yo would get a kick out of it. Next up is strawberry rearranging. Oy.

To add to the fun? I'm freaking out about whether I should be actually planting or trying to sell my little plants and clearing out the yard in case we need to sell our house in case hubby can't find a new job here where we live. Doubtful his bosses will get the stick out of their @$$.
I'm just, yeah, freaking out.
 

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Originally Posted by lmonter View Post
To add to the fun? I'm freaking out about whether I should be actually planting or trying to sell my little plants and clearing out the yard in case we need to sell our house in case hubby can't find a new job here where we live. Doubtful his bosses will get the stick out of their @$$.
I'm just, yeah, freaking out.
's mama. That's a lot of stress.

I have my latest plant germinating pics up.
Under cathy in my sig.
 

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Yuck, lmonter


Renting a roto-tiller this week to dig out beds at the homestead. We had to re-do our yard plan because of this big honkin' tree by our road, but things are looking good.
 

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Originally Posted by lmonter View Post
To add to the fun? I'm freaking out about whether I should be actually planting or trying to sell my little plants and clearing out the yard in case we need to sell our house in case hubby can't find a new job here where we live. Doubtful his bosses will get the stick out of their @$$.
I'm just, yeah, freaking out.
Ugh. Been there. So not fun. Can you start making a plan before he quits? We started a business that allowed my DH to quit his miserable job when I was 6 months pg with DS (we figured it would probably only last six months before one of us had to get another job - that was over two years ago now, and we hope never to have to get "real" jobs again). Sometimes good things come from the most stressful stuff... It's so hard to think creatively about other options when you're in the middle of job hell though!
 

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Anyone have a good link or book reccomendation for building a space to store vegis through the fall/winter. I am planting so many potatoes and realized last night I should prob get started on how I plan to store them.
We rent so can't build a root cellar or anything though I would LOVE one. We have a garage but it is not insulated so gets cold. Though we usually don't have many days of freezing in this area. Also the garage gets mice occasionally so would need to be enclosed somehow to prevent the critters. We are trying to figure out where they are getting in but man it must be somewhere really hidden. We have a huge old shed out back too but that is really not animal proof at all.
 

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Originally Posted by mamafish9 View Post
Ugh. Been there. So not fun. Can you start making a plan before he quits?
I don't think we're cut out for our own business right now - especially with 3 young children. We're too... boring to be gutsy like that. At least for the forseeable future. Plus most entrepreneurs work 100+ hour work weeks. That much work is what's stressing us out to start with, you know? We miss downtime, family time, seeing each other, etc.

Right now, I think he wants to see if/how things change at work. But I doubt it, so I'm onto the next plan. The whole 'give them an inch and they'll take a mile' thing - we've been pretty accommodating in the past, but this is just too much. He shouldn't be logging more work hours than the owner (who's the only other person in the office that knows almost as much about the jobs hubby's working on). Anyway. So we were planning to sell our car (hopefully for about $20K), buy my sister a little car and switch with her - she has my dad's old Highlander. But now, if we sell it, we'll be sticking that in the bank to float us for a few months if/when he does need to quit. Three kids in an older Geo Prizm (we have that and a wood-cutting pickup)... ah, good times. But if he can't find a job here and finds one someplace else, there you go.
I just really, really don't wanna move.

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Originally Posted by AllisonK View Post
Anyone have a good link or book reccomendation for building a space to store vegis through the fall/winter.
Root Cellaring by Mike and Nancy Bubel.
Just buy it from Amazon.com, it's totally worth it.
Our garage is only partially insulated (one wall is up against the den, other is up against the coat closet and stairwell opening), and I had butternut squash harvested in October last until about February until someone knocked the stem off. And that was just laying on the carpet remnant we have in front of the door to the garage out there.

I want to say... got an old broken freezer? If you make the vent openings mouse-proof and make it so kids can't get stuck in it, that may be something to look at. We have a dead 4cf chest freezer I'd been trying to convince hubby to bury for me, but I still haven't been convincing enough. *sigh*

And yeah, mice are annoying. We had one or two mice getting in behind an outlet cover. They'd knawed off a tiny bit of the drywall, completely hidden by the cover. It was insane.
 

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Originally Posted by AllisonK View Post
Anyone have a good link or book reccomendation for building a space to store vegis through the fall/winter.
Hi Allison
... I don't know much about it yet, but a lot of people down here in Eugene store their potatoes and carrots in the ground - they just put them in well drained soil and leave them in the ground all winter, dig 'em up when they need them. Maybe worth learning about?

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Originally Posted by lmonter View Post
I don't think we're cut out for our own business right now - especially with 3 young children. We're too... boring to be gutsy like that. At least for the forseeable future. Plus most entrepreneurs work 100+ hour work weeks. That much work is what's stressing us out to start with, you know? We miss downtime, family time, seeing each other, etc.
I hear you. We're really fortunate - we have two businesses now (mine and DH's), and we both work about 1/2 time - I figure that between us we put in 40-50 hours a week. It's been awesome for our two little ones (and DS is autistic, so the extra hands and time has been huge for keeping life sane). So it can be done, but it's definitely not for everyone. I think your car selling plan sounds good - is your town at all bikeable? I have a bike trailer, which rocks for hauling kids and stuff (although I'm not too sure I can get a bag of mulch in there with them today, I'm going to try!).
 

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Originally Posted by mamafish9 View Post
I hear you. We're really fortunate - we have two businesses now (mine and DH's), and we both work about 1/2 time - I figure that between us we put in 40-50 hours a week. It's been awesome for our two little ones (and DS is autistic, so the extra hands and time has been huge for keeping life sane). So it can be done, but it's definitely not for everyone. I think your car selling plan sounds good - is your town at all bikeable? I have a bike trailer, which rocks for hauling kids and stuff (although I'm not too sure I can get a bag of mulch in there with them today, I'm going to try!).
Nice! You guys are lucky.
Depends on your definition of biking. We live slightly uphill from our little town's "downtown." So hauling a bike trailer of kids and groceries totalling 100lbs is pretty draining. And that would be if the 5.5yo can keep up and bike 1.5miles one way without getting hit by a car (he distracts so darned easily, it's annoying - I can't tell you how many door frames he's smacked into just because he wasn't watching where he was going). But that's only in the summer. Maybe a little in spring/fall, but only a little. But biking in 2-6 feet of snow with a trailer... my bike trailer rocks, but it's not magic.

One thing I had been slowly working on though was growing as much food out of our yard as possible... so then in a year or three when I have surpluses of, say, asparagus or tomatoes or apples (hah, we do so much cider and applesauce it's ridiculous) I could just hang a sign out front with those for sale or even go in with a friend on a farmer's market booth. That was my long term plan for me to play with as the kids get older and slightly more self-sufficient and out of the boob-tick phase.

It would just break my heart to have to rip it all up to sell the house. Since most people see a food garden as a liability or something ugly (vs. plain grass).
 

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Just getting a chance to catch up


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Originally Posted by lmonter View Post
Isn't it neat? Sometimes people think I'm a farm with all I do, yet it's just my backyard (well, except two apple trees in the side yard).

Which side of the Cascades are you on? There's Raintree I believe over in Morton, and there's various other local nurseries every which way. My grandma got her now-ginormous blueberry bushes from a now-defunct nursery in Chehalis - the bushes were at least 4-5 feet wide and 5-7 feet tall last I saw (unless my cousins yanked them out since then). So for bang-for-your-buck, I still recommend high-bush varieties. Growing vertical and all.

I'm in Western WA, on the south end of the sound. I thought Raintree was in Chehalis, maybe I'm thinking of something else. That was where I was planning on going to go get blueberry bushes and *maaaybe* a dwarf apple tree of two if I can find enough room. I definitely plan on the high bush varieties as I am very limited on space. I've heard lots of great things about Raintree!

Quote:

Originally Posted by smeisnotapirate View Post
What did you guys use to make your raised beds?
We used untreated cedar boards, since they naturally repel insects and rot. My inlaws have had good success with using them for a good 4-5 years at a time. Since we don't plan on staying in our house more than 5 years probably, I didn't want to use bricks or anything like that.

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Originally Posted by FarmerCathy View Post
I'm doing fish parts (that's all they had
), root stuff (root zone brand or whatever they have at your local nursery, I got the organic stuff today at www.groworganic.com), bone meal (my dad already has some so that's easy), egg shells, organic fertilizer (have that already for the artichokes), and maybe the aspirin if I remember to pick some up. I guess that's all of it. I really need these to grow for Farmers' without BER so I'm biting the bullet and hopefully I will be rewarded with lots of tomatoes.


I seriously hadn't thought about adding a bunch of extras like that!
I'm going to have a ton of tomatoes this year, so I think I may try this. I'm thinking I may use just fish fertilizer liquid instead of the fish heads, egg shells and I will get some Root stuff and some aspirin. Oh and worm tea too! I gave my seeds to my MIL and we currently have 108 tomato starts
Between my garden, her garden and a couple of my friends...I'm sure they will all find good homes. I have a feeling I'm gonna end up with a bunch though!

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Originally Posted by lmonter View Post
To add to the fun? I'm freaking out about whether I should be actually planting or trying to sell my little plants and clearing out the yard in case we need to sell our house in case hubby can't find a new job here where we live. Doubtful his bosses will get the stick out of their @$$.
I'm just, yeah, freaking out.
s That is really hard. A good friend of mine is going through something similar. I hope everything works out okay!

My new garden beds are finally done, except we ran out of soil/compost, UGH! DH is going to make another trip to get some more tonight and then I can start planting a few things. Most of the things I want to plant are not ready to be planted for a few weeks though, so I am anxiously doing nothing at the moment
I really want to get the garden in ASAP so our harvests are earlier rather than later. DH is worried that I'm going to be "too pregnant" to do much in the garden in the late summer/early fall and that he is going to end up doing it all.
 

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Originally Posted by celestialdreamer View Post
I'm in Western WA, on the south end of the sound. I thought Raintree was in Chehalis, maybe I'm thinking of something else. That was where I was planning on going to go get blueberry bushes and *maaaybe* a dwarf apple tree of two if I can find enough room. I definitely plan on the high bush varieties as I am very limited on space. I've heard lots of great things about Raintree!

My new garden beds are finally done, except we ran out of soil/compost, UGH! DH is going to make another trip to get some more tonight and then I can start planting a few things. Most of the things I want to plant are not ready to be planted for a few weeks though, so I am anxiously doing nothing at the moment
I really want to get the garden in ASAP so our harvests are earlier rather than later. DH is worried that I'm going to be "too pregnant" to do much in the garden in the late summer/early fall and that he is going to end up doing it all.

Yup, down in Morton. Most people don't know Morton though, Chehalis is easier to remember. My grandma lived between Winlock and Napavine for most of her adult life, so I got to visit the area fairly frequently.


I hear you on the anxiously doing nothing. Amen. It'll probably snow another time or two in the next month. Um, you're not due until December. Unless you have major medical issues or are on bedrest or something, you should be fine. Most of your "golden" second trimester is during summer. I could still usually cook and such until 7-8 months along. 9mo is when I start being sluglike. But your pregnancies are probably a little different than mine.

Last year I was planting up until the day before I delivered. Tomatoes, asparagus, peppers, potatoes, beans, peas, everything. Only thing I didn't get in the ground were zucchini and more cucumbers. And my little girl didn't come out until 41w6d. My best friend was the little $8 stool from Walmart. Nice and low to the ground so I could sit with my giant belly and keep planting/weeding/whatever since my hips and pelvis were shot. I still use it, actually.
Makes it easier to weed when the beds are as infested with weeds and evil Bermuda grass like mine are.
 

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Originally Posted by lmonter View Post

Last year I was planting up until the day before I delivered. Tomatoes, asparagus, peppers, potatoes, beans, peas, everything. Only thing I didn't get in the ground were zucchini and more cucumbers. And my little girl didn't come out until 41w6d. My best friend was the little $8 stool from Walmart. Nice and low to the ground so I could sit with my giant belly and keep planting/weeding/whatever since my hips and pelvis were shot. I still use it, actually.
Makes it easier to weed when the beds are as infested with weeds and evil Bermuda grass like mine are.
Ditto to all that. DS was born in early June and due late May. June 1, the day before I started my 3-day marathon labor
, I was sitting on a kneeling pad, weeding. Sit, weed, scoot, repeat.
 

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Originally Posted by lmonter View Post
Nice! You guys are lucky.
Depends on your definition of biking... biking in 2-6 feet of snow with a trailer... my bike trailer rocks, but it's not magic.
(
Yeah, I can't say as how uphill in the snow sounds like fun! I like your idea of an urban farmstand though - in my town, that would be a big success. I hope things settle down some at your DH's job.
 

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The snow is almost gone!!!! I can see my raised beds and maybe soon, but i'm not holding my breath, the earth will warm up enough to put in onions and maybe cold crop veggies. eek I can't wait.

Our LFD is June 8th or so, so i will wait until the wkend after to sow my plants.

I have planned my garden on paper and can't wait to actually do something than just stare at the paper, like working in the soil to get ready to sow.
 
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