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I am thinking about planting a little garden in my front yard and need a little advice. I live in Vermont, so we have a pretty short growing season. My plot would be about 6 feet by about 8 feet or so. The soil is super sandy, as in beach sand for the most part, but I am going to buy a few large bags of soil and a few bags of compost to mix in. The plot is right up against my apartment building and faces East, so it won't get much afternoon sun.<br><br>
Can I plant anything that will produce? I would love tomatoes, spinach, leaf lettuce, and maybe some beans. Are any of those doable? Should I look at other things?
 

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I think you should be able to do all of those. Spinach and lettece can be planed now. I have a short growing season here in northern Wi too and I have those both in already. What time will the garden get shaded?
 

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It tends to be sunny in the morning and is shady by around 2 or 3 (I think...) Will the plants do ok in the sand as long as I mix in some topsoil and compost? I won't be able to mix in much more than a couple of inches worth. (can't afford too add too many bags, but I will try)<br><br>
This will be my first "grown-up" garden. I have no idea how to even start. I have no idea how many plants to put out there, or what to plant where. I am thinking maybe two or three tomato plants, maybe one regular and two cherry (DS adores cherry tomatoes), four pepper plants (I think they come in four packs), have no idea about beans. I guess I could plant the spinach and lettuce around the edge of the whole thing.<br><br>
I am super excited, but I have to get digging and buy some fence. I won't be able to do much until Saturday, but I plan to dig up the soil by hand over the next few days. My library lends garden tools, so I am going to go get a shovel and a hoe tomorrow. I can't wait! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/joy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="joy"><br><br>
Any other veggies that would do well and are idiot proof?
 

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I'd throw a zucchini in there for good measure. If you pm me I happen to have a ton of extra seeds of my favorite zuke (black beauty) and would be happy to drop a few in the mail <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> I have extra DRagon Tongue bush beans too --
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Ooooh, zucchini! Don't the plants get pretty big though? Can you train them to stay small by wrapping the vines around the main part of the plant? Hmmm.... I can't wait to start digging!!!<br><br>
ETA: I just Googled Dragon Tongue beans, and they are gorgeous! Do they taste similar to green beans when harvested small? Do you cook them the same way? I was reading that you can also let them mature and harvest them for shelled beans too. Sounds pretty idiot proof if I forgot to harvest them when they are small.
 

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The Black Beauty plants do get big, they are bush types. You could always throw them in beside your bed or something. They are worth the space with how prolific they are for a long long time.<br><br>
This is my first year with the Dragon Tongue beans but they are supposed to be good fresh and also make a great shelled bean. Last year I couldn't pick our Kentucky Wonder beans fast enough and ended up lettiing a bunch dry on the vines and they were TERRIFIC! So I'm totally doing that again this year with the different types I planted <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
I have them all packed up and will send them out today <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Ok, so I dug my plot up tonight, and it is actually a little bigger than I had thought. I am guessing it is about 8 feet by maybe 16 feet or so. As I dug, I realized that the top two to three inches are pretty good looking soil, and then it is sand beneath that. I am going to buy some topsoil and compost on Saturday to add to it and mix in before I plant. I am guessing that the space receives at least 6 or so hours of direct sun per day, but I am going to try to time it on Saturday. I do know it starts to get shady around 4pm or so, but I don't know what time it gets sun in the morning.<br><br>
What else can I plant? I just figured out I am in zone four. I am reading that partial shade isn't good for tomatoes, but I desperately want to grow some, so I am going to try. I might do them in big pots that I can move around the yard if I need to. Haven't decided on them yet. Here is my list so far:<br><br>
Tomatoes<br>
Peppers<br>
Lettuce<br>
Spinach<br>
Zucchini<br>
Beans<br><br>
Also, if anyone knows any good resources for planning where to put everything, and how much room it will need in between plants, and different types of veggies, that would be so helpful!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Erinz</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15374966"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">The Black Beauty plants do get big, they are bush types. You could always throw them in beside your bed or something. They are worth the space with how prolific they are for a long long time.<br><br>
This is my first year with the Dragon Tongue beans but they are supposed to be good fresh and also make a great shelled bean. Last year I couldn't pick our Kentucky Wonder beans fast enough and ended up lettiing a bunch dry on the vines and they were TERRIFIC! So I'm totally doing that again this year with the different types I planted <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
I have them all packed up and will send them out today <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"></div>
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Thanks so much! I can't wait!!!! I think I will put the Black Beauty plants on the side next to the cement walkway. That way they won't grow into the neighbor's yard, but if they cover part of the walkway, no big deal. Hopefully the neighbor kids (and my own!) don't think it is ok to walk on them if they escape the garden plot. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"><br><br>
So, when you dry beans, you let them dry on the vine? I was wondering about that. I have always wanted to grow my own beans to dry for winter, but didn't understand how on earth to do it. I have never really had my own garden plot, but have helped in a few, so I am pretty new to all of this. I will be happy if I get one salad out of the whole thing. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 
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