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NancyJ 06-03-2014 04:26 PM

The Garden Thread - for our veggie gardens?

I'm getting ready to set out a garden of heirloom vegetables . While checking out companion planting I found this -- "ridiculous" fact - come on now -- put the dogs to shame already , why don't you
"Carrot root fly can smell carrots from up to a mile away."

Do we stand a chance.

How do you even imagine this ability . "We" as humans are so handicapped , if it weren't for our brains .

garden thread anyone ?


That is amazing! And the gardeners' annual battle begins!

I just put out some heirloom tomatoes, I can't remember the name and the tag is out in the garden with the plants, lol, but I am looking forward to them. They are mostly orange striped with red, size and consistency of a beefsteak, but low acid, sweet taste. Been looking for low acid tomatoes for my sister's sake.

Perhaps a gardening thread would be great! And I would tell the stories of my tomato-eating GSDs and GSDxs, the rascals!


I would be up for a garden thread in chat. We have built some awesome raised beds this year and are doing a combination of Huglekultur and Square Foot Gardening. I am a bit late getting out my plants but we have a long growing season.


garden thread , me too , just came in from the rain (while dogs having a free romp) .
I was spreading Jersey Green Sand and Volcanic Ash from a northern Ontario pre-glacial long extinct volcano !!! has micro minerals "rare earth" (different category). Minerals make such a huge difference for the plant, for the taste , for the nutritional value , for the the plants' resistance to bugs and other threats . Two years ago I grew chard . One leaf was enough for a family of four that loves chard. I had so much crop that I brought a leaf for each of my "market" friends . We fooled around using them as palm fronds to fan each other .
I had a bird of paradise plant that I started outdoors . Year two transplanted it . Year three transplanted. Year four it was 10 feet tall, took over my two storey sun room -- looked outstanding but took up too much room . Offered it to friends - no room --- offered it to a set-wrangler for movies (there is a greenhouse due north which does exactly this) --- they didn't have the need - so poor plant was left outside , and being tropical ......

NancyJ 06-03-2014 04:35 PM

Right now I am pretty much planting plants I can get locally and some seeds (like for beans, carrots, radishes) buying Heirlooms. I am playing with growing some seeds under grow lights so I can get a better start next year and buying Heirlooms through Southern Seed Exchange. My fall crop will be heirlooms from them. I do have a Cherokee Purple tomato started though, which is an heirloom and Super Sweet 100 which is a hybrid. Also have some volunteer tomatoes from last year (surprise me!).....

The Hugelkultur thing. The bottom half of my two feet deep beds is wood from the forest. Stuff with nice deep roots sucking up minerals from the ground and I will keep mulching with woodland leaves as well. Also got some organic cow manure. ....

carmspack 06-03-2014 07:26 PM

so that is what Hugelkultur is .

mine , quite by accident is somewhat similar. We had some grading done and moved the beautiful rich topsoil to the back in a mound . The dimensions are about 40 feet long, 4 feet wide , 2 to 3 feet high , left as nature dealt with it from fall to this spring.
The area gets full sun exposure.
There are clumps with grass growing . There are some volunteer lambs quarters which are weeds but very nutritious and delish , and some bindweed which I need to nip in the bud asap .

My plan was to grow vining plants , let them ramble where they want , and then they would cover and shade out the weeds , and let to compost for an improved bed next year.

I planted 3 garden center zucchini .

Now for the heirlooms . next 2 Cream of Saskatchewan Water Melon, chosen for taste and early harvest and cool tolerance Cream of Saskatchewan Watermelon | Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Co

Heirloom Watermelon Seed from Heritage Harvest Seed

next 3 Henderson's Winsall tomatoes Heirloom Tomato Seed from Heritage Harvest Seed

then 2 Chartenais Melon Charentais Melon, Seeds | Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Co try it ! All Hail The Charentais Melon!

then 2 Noir des Carmes Melon Noir de Carmes Melon | Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Co Melon, Noir des Carmes Organic | Seed Savers Exchange

then 2 Kaier Alexander Cucumber "
Kaiser Alexander

This extremely rare cucumber is named for the Russian Emperor Alexander and is originally from Russia. The most unusual trait of this cucumber is that when fully mature and past the eating stage, the skin is brown with white striations. It is truly beautiful! This heirloom also is one of the crunchiest, best tasting cucumbers I have grown and is best eaten when the green fruit are under 6 inches long. A real treasure! 60 days to maturity." The past is present - Winnipeg Free Press Homes

last on this heap 3 North Georgia Candy Roaster looks like it will feed a multitude Candy Roaster - North Georgia Squash | Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Co Heirloom Squash Seed from Heritage Harvest Seed

have some State Fair Zinnias Natural Bridges Landscaping rimming the edges , and in the middle a multi branched mid height sunflower .

something for us, something for the bees, something for the birds.

closer to the house I have Purple Peacock Broccoli<!--

Flamingo Chard Organic Chard, Flamingo Pink (1/4 lb) From Seed To Table: Saturday Spotlight - Flamingo Chard

and in another 1/2 whiskey barrel Red Vulcan chard Rhubarb Chard Vulcan | Plant & Flower Stock Photography:
Vulcan Swiss Chard - Organic Seeds

another 1/2 whiskey barrel has red runner beans for us and the hummingbirds Runner Beans
shared with
Gold Marie runner Goldmarie Romano Pole Bean | Jung Seed |

in a 1/2 whiskey barrel Peacevine Tomato highest level vitamin C , high lycopene -- climbing tomato and already in flower ! Tomato 'Peacevine' Plants - Cherry Tomato Plants - Tomatoes

in another 1/2 whiskey barrel , climbing everybearing strawberries.

then I have my specialty mints -- and some tomato seeds which I haven't planted yet.

I plan to eat , share the melons, and cut and freeze for smoothies later in the winter , and experiment with dehydrating them for snacks.

ANYbody interested in seeds I will be more than happy to send them out to you ! (after harvest)

NancyJ 06-03-2014 08:16 PM

Oh goodness.......this looks delicious. I am moving a bit slowly. I bought some seeds last year from Southern Seed Exchange ..... Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, Saving the Past for the Future

We have limited room. Our soil needs much work and since we are getting older, we decided to build these raised beds.

This is a shot of the first 6 beds in various stages of filling. We have room for 5 more. Each bed is only 3 feet x 8 feet of planting space. After we maximize on that we have some places in the back we can do berries and have some plans to do edible landscaping in the front and side yards.....but not so much basically due to sunlight issues.

The backyard of the house is really the southern exposure.....and it is full of deciduous trees. The shot you are seeing here is about 730am. The size of the trees is good for us to do solar panels on the roof for many years to come but it does limit gardening options. Our western side yard gets enough sun all day to come up with plantings, though. I figure any part of the yard that will support thick Bermuda grass will support food plants. But we have to do it in such a way to not tick off the neighbors. That is ok. If I can show you can have a tame yard AND grow food, that will be doing some good.

This is a closeup of the first bed I planted a few days ago. It has tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, marigold, and there are carrot seeds in the ground (multicolored varieties)--I will also sneak in some leaf lettuce but that is growing in small peat pots right now and I will tuck it in the shade of the other plants.

The beds are metal roofing (zinc galvinized) and copper treated lumber (which does not have much soil contact)....We fill the bottom half with logs and branches layered with dirt and green stuff and more dirt etc. and the top 12 inches is soil. Some is organic cow manure and a pine bark amendment but other is woodland leaf mold dug from our yard and some is our own compost. ...........we will see what does best.

I have heard (but am not brave enough to risk yet) that sea salt greatly improves the flavor of tomatoes. I know about Epsom Salts but not sea salt....and may try that on some of the tomatoes that volunteered in the ground along the fence line from last year's crop.

NancyJ 06-03-2014 08:26 PM

I am just going to have to see if that purple brocolli can go in our fall garden here! That is too wild.

ksotto333 06-03-2014 08:48 PM

Love the raised beds...started my tomatoes and peppers inside in March,put them in last week. My tags got messed up,so not quite sure what kind actually came up. It will be a surprise...this is our best year yet for the strawberries....getting spoiled picking those...

Bear L 06-03-2014 09:06 PM

The purple broccoli look amazing!

Jocoyn - the beds look nice. Wondering if that is too closely spaced though? Like the tomatoes, mine is spaced further apart (and I'm spacing it even further apart this year) so I don't have to severely trim it back multiple times to keep it from suffocating surrounding plants. Are you doing the square foot gardening?

I'm following the no till, heavy mulching methods. It is my lazy way to garden. It has worked well.

NancyJ 06-03-2014 09:12 PM

Yep on the square foot gardening....we are making supports this week for things that vine.....we started with no till last year but it would take a long time to fix this clay my husband does not want to get on hands and knees.....

Sent from Free App

carmspack 06-03-2014 10:36 PM

the purple peacock broccoli is pretty , and the pigment provides anti oxidant benefits , and you can have three plants serve your family for the entire season. Instead of lobbing off the whole head you just take the young side shoots - florets , and use those . You can eat the leaves like kale , and the stalk .

carmspack 06-03-2014 10:49 PM

recipe --- same site as above

Gene’s Broccoli Pecan Salad

2 to 3 heads Broccoli
¾ cup pecans
½ cup golden raisins
Salt and pepper to taste

Dressing 1 cup good mayonnaise
¼ cup white wine vinegar
5 tablespoons granulated sugar

Use 2 to 3 heads of Broccoli, depending on their size. Wash the Broccoli, shaking off excess water. Remove the thick stalks and cut into chunky bite-sized pieces. Briefly toast the pecans in a skillet to release their nutty goodness. Rough chop the toasted pecans to yield ½ to ¾ cup. In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients, adding salt and pepper to taste. In a large bowl, combine the Broccoli florets, chopped pecans and golden raisons. Pour the dressing over the Broccoli salad, mixing to coat well. Chill until use~for up to four days~but it will likely be gobbled up immediately!

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