How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Discuss lifestyle changes to better survive disasters. This category is for topics pertaining to being self reliant such as DIY, farming, alternative energy, autonomous solutions to water collection and waste removal, etc.

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quazi
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How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by quazi » Tue Apr 12, 2016 2:44 am

We've had a really early spring this year. I spread some stove ashes to help melt the snow off of some piles of soil I made last fall. They were still kind of frozen, and I'm impatient, so I used a mattock to chop bits chunks of it out.

I threw together a quick raised bed along the south side of our barn. I've got a few plants under various improvised cloches.
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Actually, I haven't bothered to cover them up at night for about a week. It's frosted pretty good (~25F) a few times, and they seem to still be going strong. I think it's a pretty warm and protected microclimate.

The plants in it now are some my brother and his girlfriend had been growing under lights. My deep water culture hydroponics experiment was pretty much a failure due to lack of light.

We've got a lot of plants started for our own use and our nursery business. These are mostly just the things that need started really early (tomatoes, peppers, leeks, etc.) but also a few hardy greens that I'm going to transplant into the bed this coming weekend. We won't start most of our seeds for another month or so. We never have enough space.
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KYZHunters
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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by KYZHunters » Tue Apr 12, 2016 12:16 pm

Had to cut our acre of asparagus below the ground three times due to temps in the twenties. :cry:
crypto wrote:It's not that you were being "harsh" so much as a "douchebag".

Zxc
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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by Zxc » Thu Apr 14, 2016 2:39 pm

Installed a new raised bed last weekend. Will pick up dirt for it this weekend. Seeds are started for beets, lettuce, kale, carrots, and cucumber. Snap peas, watermelon, and pumpkin seeds are already in the ground.

Planted my tomato and sweet pepper starts last weekend.

This is my first major attempt at growing a garden. I hope it will be a successful year.

Whatever fails, I hope I learn from.

Does anyone have any other ideas on easy to grow fruits/veggies with low space requirements?

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quazi
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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by quazi » Fri Apr 15, 2016 2:22 am

KYZHunters wrote:Had to cut our acre of asparagus below the ground three times due to temps in the twenties. :cry:
Can young asparagus not handle freezing temps? I've never grown it before, but I've got some crowns on order for this year.
Zxc wrote:Does anyone have any other ideas on easy to grow fruits/veggies with low space requirements?
Potatoes are pretty easy in northern climates. You get a lot of calories for the space they take up too. Some people grow them vertically in cages or tires. Basically you plant the potato in a tire or the bottom of a cage. As the potato grows you keep covering up the lower parts of the plant with soil or straw (you have to keep stacking on tires if you're using them instead of a cage). Theoretically you can get a crazy amount of potatoes in a small space that way. I say theoretically because I haven't tried it myself, we just hill them (hoe dirt on top of them) a couple times a year.

Zucchini is a good, easy plant that is highly productive.

Rhubarb might be a good choice as well, but you probably wouldn't be getting that much for the first year or two.

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by ZombieGranny » Fri Apr 15, 2016 1:57 pm

Potato tower thread, including page 3 link to varieties suitable or not for growing in towers.
viewtopic.php?f=39&t=44219
In my day, we didn't have virtual reality.
If a one-eyed razorback barbarian warrior was chasing you with an ax, you just had to hope you could outrun him.
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Preps buy us time. Time to learn how and time to remember how. Time to figure out what is a want, what is a need.

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by Zxc » Sat Apr 16, 2016 7:52 am

I've always been interested in growing potatoes vertically. I personally don't eat enough of them to justify growing them.

I started zucchini. Should be an easy plant to grow. I picked up another tomato start and a jalapeño start at the hardware store.... This is why I can't go shopping alone... Purchased a Roma start for the sole purpose of home canning a marinara sauce (another first).

Rhubarb: aren't the leaves poisonous? We have a four legged creature that also runs the backyard that we like having around.

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quazi
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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by quazi » Sat Apr 16, 2016 9:32 pm

Rhubarb leaves are supposedly poisonous, but I'm guessing a person would have to eat a lot of them to get sick.

Most of us kids ate rhubarb leaves growing up on a dare, and nobody got sick. I don't remember ever seeing one of the dogs take a bite out of the leaves, and even our goats seem to leave them alone. We never had a dog mysteriously die either.

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by Zxc » Sun Apr 17, 2016 9:40 am

quazi wrote:Rhubarb leaves are supposedly poisonous, but I'm guessing a person would have to eat a lot of them to get sick.

Most of us kids ate rhubarb leaves growing up on a dare, and nobody got sick. I don't remember ever seeing one of the dogs take a bite out of the leaves, and even our goats seem to leave them alone. We never had a dog mysteriously die either.
Good to know. My grandfather always grew rhubarb when I was growing up. Seems to be a plant once it gets going, you have far more than you can reasonably use. Will definitely look into it a bit. Thanks for the recommendations.

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by Confucius » Sun Apr 17, 2016 10:11 am

It's very high in oxalic acid (the leaves anyways, there's some in the stalks, but nothing like the leaves). That's the stuff that gives you kidney stones. Most people can process a certain amount of it, so a bit here and there on a dare is not the end of the world. Just not a great idea, some people really can't handle barely any...


Those poor people can't eat spinach.


Anyhow, I just moved, so my garden does not grow yet, but I'm on an acre now, and am currently going through the effort of adding a french drain and backfilling a retaining wall that for whatever reason the previous owners never did. Planning on planting a vegetable and herb garden behind it, such as is able to grow around here. Going to have to think of something to do about the deer though. Half dozen big mulies in my backyard yesterday.

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by majorhavoc » Sun Apr 17, 2016 6:45 pm

As an experiment this year, I'm trying to start some relatively old seeds; stuff that's been accumulating over the past 10 or so years. I pre-soaked the seeds in a very diluted hydrogen peroxide solution and then sealed them in dampened paper towels inside zip lock baggies. I thought it would be a fun exercise to simulate survival conditions post societal collapse.

It's only been about a week, but so far no success. Still way too early to give up, but some of my fellow post apocalyptic survivors are starting to doubt my wisdom in bartering half our remaining ammunition for these old seeds ....

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quazi
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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by quazi » Wed Apr 20, 2016 1:48 am

Speaking of rhubarb, ours is poking up through the ground.
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I planted about 200 cloves of garlic last year, and it's coming up as well.
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I've been mostly trying to grow perennials from seed, but I do order some bare root plants. Got a big order in from Fedco today. Most of the stuff is going to have to spend the night in the root cellar, but I potted up the raspberries, blackberries, Nanking cherries, an aronia and a lavender bush.
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Last edited by quazi on Thu Apr 21, 2016 4:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by KYZHunters » Wed Apr 20, 2016 8:55 pm

Quasi

There is a lot of water in young asparagus and while a light frost won't hurt it freezing temps will.

I'll get some pix tomorrow, but 10 days after our last freeze, unusable spears are still pushing up. I'd guess it has cut our production by 20-25% which hurts. It's probably costing me $40-75 a day.

Our crowns are planted 18" deep so the plant is immune from bad weather but the spears are not.
quazi wrote:
KYZHunters wrote:Had to cut our acre of asparagus below the ground three times due to temps in the twenties. :cry:
Can young asparagus not handle freezing temps? I've never grown it before, but I've got some crowns on order for this year.
Zxc wrote:Does anyone have any other ideas on easy to grow fruits/veggies with low space requirements?
Potatoes are pretty easy in northern climates. You get a lot of calories for the space they take up too. Some people grow them vertically in cages or tires. Basically you plant the potato in a tire or the bottom of a cage. As the potato grows you keep covering up the lower parts of the plant with soil or straw (you have to keep stacking on tires if you're using them instead of a cage). Theoretically you can get a crazy amount of potatoes in a small space that way. I say theoretically because I haven't tried it myself, we just hill them (hoe dirt on top of them) a couple times a year.

Zucchini is a good, easy plant that is highly productive.

Rhubarb might be a good choice as well, but you probably wouldn't be getting that much for the first year or two.
crypto wrote:It's not that you were being "harsh" so much as a "douchebag".

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by gundogs » Thu Apr 21, 2016 7:12 am

Here,in NNY, I have had a bed of Guelph Millennium asparagus for 12 years.
I have had little trouble with cold weather,even after a brutal winter last year

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by KYZHunters » Thu Apr 21, 2016 1:22 pm

gundogs wrote:Here,in NNY, I have had a bed of Guelph Millennium asparagus for 12 years.
I have had little trouble with cold weather,even after a brutal winter last year
The spears don't freeze in 20- degree weather? Awesome!
crypto wrote:It's not that you were being "harsh" so much as a "douchebag".

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by gundogs » Fri Apr 22, 2016 7:47 am

KYZHunters wrote:
gundogs wrote:Here,in NNY, I have had a bed of Guelph Millennium asparagus for 12 years.
I have had little trouble with cold weather,even after a brutal winter last year
The spears don't freeze in 20- degree weather? Awesome!
This variety doesn't appear until April and it rarely gets as low as 20 in April.
A few times I have covered with old blankets/sheets if forecast was for a cold snap.
Of course that's not practical for an acre,but my bed is only about 80 sq ft.
This year we did have a late snow but I had covered the plants and the snow melted quickly
and it warmed up within a few days

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Re: How does your garden grow? 2016 edition

Post by DAMAGAN » Tue Aug 09, 2016 10:14 pm

Fall Garden:

Just moved and decided to switch from raised beds to container gardening.

I took some assorted pallets home from work and made a 102" by 24" garden bench. With the others I made a compost structure (that I still need to add to but not for a while) to keep the kids and dog out and be more professional looking than the previous half whiskey barrel we were using.

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I was given 40 of these roughly gallon sized plastic pots from some flowers so Aug 2 I planted chives, beets, squash, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, Okra, a strawberry plant and and heirloom tomato plant for the topsy turvy I got for $1 to try out in the window this fall. I also transplanted the beginning compost material to it's new home.

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Within 6 days I have beets, okra, and summer squash sprouting.

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Day 7 brought zucchini and butternut squash. I got a pretty good pic for my phone of the zucchini.

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I will try and update within a day or two of anytime something happens with these plants. I plan on transplanting the ones that will need more room once they get a little bigger but I was too lazy to fill up bigger containers until I knew they were going to sprout and live a little while.

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