pepperhead212's 2020 garden

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pepperhead212
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pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#1

Post: # 16582Unread post pepperhead212
Wed Apr 08, 2020 8:23 pm

I got a lot more done today, so I figured I'd start my thread. I didn't get any more started out there, but a lot in place, for me to get started in.

I needed help, simply put, so I called that kid that I used to deliver male to, that would do odd jobs for me. He is now down in Bridgeton (the further south you go in NJ, the less I incidents of corona virus, and he hasn't had any in his area, fortunately), the but still comes up here sometimes, and I figured that he was probably in need of work! So he came up today, and went to that local hydroponics place, where I made a good sized order, to be picked up out back - 2 bales of Promix HD, 2 large bags of worm castings (a great organic addition to containers), a cu ft of perlite (I was almost out of this), and a bag of Big Foot Mycorrhizae concentrate. My friend was able to load those bales into the truck, but barely! I told him, now he knows why I brought him.

Then, after unloading this at home, he went to Lowe's with me, both of us wearing masks, but only maybe 25% of the rest of the customers with masks. All of the workers, however, so they are using their heads. There, I got the lumber for making another raised bed - something I definitely wouldn't have tried myself!
And after we unloaded these, he helped me smaller ones into my workshop, through the side window, so I can work on those later on, but the longer - 10' pieces - we worked on outside, on my picnic table. I joined these side by side using a doweling jig, and 3/8" dowels, and Gorilla glue, as well as 7 clamps per pair. I used a plane to get the edges better joined, but the spaces are filled up with that gorilla glue - an essential reason to use this here.

After this, he helped me uncover all the rest of my SIPs, and put them in their places. I uncovered 7 Earthboxes and 4 buckets yesterday, but there were still a lot to go - I think 15 larger ones, and 8 more buckets. Then, we unclamped the wood - he was surprised at all that foam that expanded out of it, but I told him that's why I used excess glue - to fill the gaps! We slid those double boards into my shed, and got the tools indoors k just in time, as the rain drops started appearing.
Here is a photo showing the ones he helped me uncover, and put in their spots. Another 10 EBs I uncovered yeasterday, along with 4 more bucket sized SIPs.
ImageAll of the SIPs finally uncovered 4-8-20 by pepperhead212, on Flickr
Now I need to get a few days in a row w/o rain, so I can put the outdoor stain on the wood, then the contruction starts.

All of my tomatoes have germinated now! All of my eggplant varieties have germinated, as well, and I planted the extra seedlings in the spare pots in the tray, as with the tomatoes. Not sure if I will plant more this year, given the situation, or give them to friends. Peppers are just starting, which is normal.

Now, as soon as I have a break in rain, I'll get working on topping off those SIPs, getting ready for those seedlings.
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#2

Post: # 16870Unread post GoDawgs
Sat Apr 11, 2020 8:59 am

Slowly winter retreats and spring tasks begin. The transition is always a big job but little by little it happens. :)

What's going on the trellis on the fence?
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#3

Post: # 16871Unread post PlainJane
Sat Apr 11, 2020 9:01 am

You had a very productive day.
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#4

Post: # 16876Unread post brownrexx
Sat Apr 11, 2020 9:04 am

Lookin good @pepperhead212 It's nice to see this shot of your whole garden.

Is your asparagus up yet? I had one spear and about 8 others about 2" tall so far. I picked everything ahead of last night's freeze. Other years I didn't pick the ones showing and the freezing temperatures made anything above ground turn to mush.
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#5

Post: # 16906Unread post pepperhead212
Sat Apr 11, 2020 10:18 am

GoDawgs wrote:
Sat Apr 11, 2020 8:59 am
Slowly winter retreats and spring tasks begin. The transition is always a big job but little by little it happens. :)

What's going on the trellis on the fence?
Mostly tomatoes - the bucket SIPs get the smaller tomatoes, and on the far end eggplants. Eggplants usually don't need a trellis, but they get very large in the SIPs, and they need support, esp. the Hari and Neon; I've had some new varieties not get very large, but I just didn't grow them again!

No sign of asparagus yet @brownrexx, but I've heard others with old asparagus that aren't seeing them yet, so I wasn't concerned. And it was a few days ago I looked - maybe I'll see some today! I know I won't get many the first year.

6 more pepper varieties germinated yesterday morning, and two more this morning. The slowest, as always, even in that heat, but they are taking off!

Got the ends built and finished in my workshop, these days I've stayed in. Also finished a project, while the coats of stain cured. I have to do the long sides outside, when I've got some days without rain, then put the bed together.

I feel sorry for those people stuck at home with nothing to do!
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#6

Post: # 17885Unread post pepperhead212
Mon Apr 20, 2020 12:06 pm

Got a lot more done yesterday, mainly putting together that new raised bed. That was not too easy to do without help, but I managed. Now, after a misting earlier (only .06" of rain!), I'll go out and lay the hardware cloth on the bottom of the bed, and start laying the Hugelculture stuff in there, before the soil. A bunch of the mix I take out of my SIPs, when I top them off, will get put in there, which is why I wanted to get this in now!
ImageNew raised bed, not quite done, but I'm sure done for the day! by pepperhead212, on Flickr

Saw my second and third asparagus sprouts yesterday!
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#7

Post: # 17893Unread post PlainJane
Mon Apr 20, 2020 2:06 pm

Your raised bed looks great!
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#8

Post: # 17906Unread post GoDawgs
Mon Apr 20, 2020 4:12 pm

Nice job putting that together. ;)
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#9

Post: # 17926Unread post pepperhead212
Mon Apr 20, 2020 8:02 pm

Today, I got the Hugelculture items in - branches and leaves from around the yard, some organic straw that I got last fall (weeds grew on top, so it is safe, except for the weeds, but they're everywhere!), and a bunch of rotting logs, from behind my neighbor's house, in the alley. They were mostly falling apart, which is perfect for this! I also cleaned out my workshop - small bits and pieces of wood that I keep in a can down there, and I dumped it out, and kept the better, more useable pieces, the rest, went in there. And all that sawdust that I emptied out of the dust collector - some was composting, but most was in a bag, and that was sprinkled around. The compost was not getting real hot yet, so some of it was still recognizable, but I put it in anyway. I pulled all of that soil to one end, put half of the hardware cloth down, and put all of those Hugelculture items down, then pulled all of that soil over the finished end, and repeated the process. Tomorrow, it is supposed to rain heavily, so that should wash it down into the nooks and crannies.
ImageSecond half of Hugelculture bed, with a lot of rotting logs, just like I wanted! by pepperhead212, on Flickr

ImageGenerous amount of soil added to the latest bed, with all of the Hugelculture stuff underneath. by pepperhead212, on Flickr
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#10

Post: # 18390Unread post pepperhead212
Sat Apr 25, 2020 9:53 pm

Last night, while it was still raining out there (over 2" late Thurs through Friday), I did some indoor trimming of my bay leaf and kaffir lime trees. I kept the bay for drying, but I don't do that with the lime leaves, since they are better fresh, and I always have them! As usual, there were a lot to trim off, to ready it to go out in a couple of weeks.
ImageClipped kaffir lime tree branches. by pepperhead212, on Flickr

The weather was great today, and I spent about 7½ hours out there, getting my SIPs ready , starting with the tomatoes. I also fixed up some of the bucket SIPs for the cucumbers.

I emptied out 3 of the EBs, the ones I had the longest, that I grew cherries in every season. I expected to find more in them.
ImageEarthbox, disassembled after 6 years. by pepperhead212, on Flickr

I used Promix HD on two of these, each with 3 c dolomite, and one of them I mixed 4 c of that organic 5-4-6 Ecoscraps tomato food through it. The other, I put a new fertilizer sock with 3 cups of 10-10-10 granular. I will plant one Subsugar and one Cherry Bomb in each of them, and see how they compare.
ImageEarthbox with Promix HD and a fertilizer sock in the trench, ready for final fill. by pepperhead212, on Flickr

And I decided to make my own mix, for the Earthboxes, and see how it works in comparison. I mixed about 14 scoops (a large flour scoop I use for transferring soils) of peat moss, 1 scoop vermiculite, 1½ scoops coarse perlite, 1½ scoops worm castings, plus the 3 c dolomite and 4 c organic fertilizer, with a little micorrhyzae powder, and all mixed together. I'll see how it works, in comparison.
ImageMaking a homemade Earthbox growing mix by pepperhead212, on Flickr

ImageFinished mix for the Earthbox by pepperhead212, on Flickr

ImageSIPs, ready for tomatoes! by pepperhead212, on Flickr

ImageEarthboxes, ready for the tomatoes! by pepperhead212, on Flickr

ImageBucket SIPs, ready for cucumbers! by pepperhead212, on Flickr

I took the mix from those EBs, and added it to the topsoil in that new raised bed, along with the calcium carbonate gravel from a fish tank - won't dissolve quickly, since it was in that tank for over 20 years! But I sprinkled all that around, along with some fine perlite - only a little at the end of a bag I had, which wasn't going to use in the soil mixes. Using my Mantis, I churned all this up, until it looked totally homogenous.
ImageRaised bed, topped off with old Earthbox soil mix, and some calcium carbonate gravel, from fish tanks. by pepperhead212, on Flickr

Today, I started hardening off the tomatoes, though not for long, as the sun was intense! First time I've actually put sunscreen on this season, being out there for so long, and the sun so intense.
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#11

Post: # 18570Unread post pepperhead212
Mon Apr 27, 2020 6:52 pm

Tomatoes are going in tomorrow! :)
I spent another 7 hours out there today, getting all those SIPs ready; a little spitting occasionally, but just enough to see drops on the picnic table for a couple minutes at a time. Around 5:30 it started getting worse, as predicted, but I was done, and I just put everything in the shed and came in.

I topped off all of the bucket SIPs, and I had two empty 18 gal SIPs that I did a silmilar experiment that I did with the cherry tomatoes - in one, I mixed the dolomite and organic fertilizer in with the Promix HD, and in the other, I just mixed the dolomite with the Promix HD, then put my usual fertilizer sock in it. Big Beef will be one of the varieties in both - I'll have to check for the other. All "snacks" and other additions to the tubs will be the same.

These tomatoes were growing too fast, until I put them out in this cool weather the last couple of days, to harden them off. 51° for a high today, and down in the 40s most of the time. It's been quite breezy, to strengthen them up, plus I have been adding silica to their watering, to strengthen the stems, and had an oscillating fan on them an hour at a time,about 8 hours each day, since they were maybe 4" tall.
ImageTomatoes, and 2 tomatillos, ready for planting on 4-28 by pepperhead212, on Flickr
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#12

Post: # 18581Unread post MissS
Mon Apr 27, 2020 8:26 pm

They look great.
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#13

Post: # 18592Unread post pepperhead212
Mon Apr 27, 2020 10:43 pm

Now I may be re-thinking this tomorrow planting, not because of cold, but because of wind. A "gusty thunderstorm" is now in the forecast for Thursday, and the wind on the daily Weather Station forecast for my area has gone up to 30 mph gusts from the original 20. I'll see if it has changed tomorrow...
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#14

Post: # 18612Unread post roper2008
Tue Apr 28, 2020 6:58 am

Tomatoes looking good. Mine not that great, they seemed extra sensitive to hardening off this year. Still alive though. I bought 3 from Home Depot, Sunsugar, Super Sweet 100’s, and Juliet, they are in large pots except Juliet in ground.
You use 3 cups lime in Earthboxes, I thought it was 1 cup.
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#15

Post: # 18629Unread post pepperhead212
Tue Apr 28, 2020 10:41 am

roper2008 wrote:
Tue Apr 28, 2020 6:58 am
You use 3 cups lime in Earthboxes, I thought it was 1 cup.
If I was putting in the powdered stuff, I'd use a lot less, but starting out fresh, I put in 3 c of the granular, which dissolves a lot slower. Topping them off, then I just add a half cup.
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#16

Post: # 18672Unread post pepperhead212
Tue Apr 28, 2020 10:01 pm

I got a lot more done today, getting some more of the SIPs ready, and leveling all of those I already had set up. I mowed the lawn again, due to all of the rain, with more coming. I also took the cover off the row I grew the butternuts in, and spread the old soil mix I removed from the SIPs - like I used for the raised beds - and I 'tilled it in. Then, I re-covered the bed - all ready for the squash!
ImageButternut squash row, uncovered, and rototilled, with old soil from SIPs. by pepperhead212, on Flickr

ImageButternut row, re-covered. by pepperhead212, on Flickr
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#17

Post: # 18694Unread post GoDawgs
Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:22 am

One step at a time and pretty soon it's all done. Well, it never really *done* as it's always a process of becoming. :lol:
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#18

Post: # 18838Unread post pepperhead212
Thu Apr 30, 2020 7:41 pm

I got the seeds for my two types of okra, as well as 3 moschata squash varieties, 5 gourd varieties, and 2 cucumber varieties soaking in GA-3, to be planted tomorrow, in Jiffy pellets, or on layered PTs in petri dishes, for the larger, slower seeds. When I experimented with GA-3 soaking, cucurbits and okra all benefited considerably, germinating faster, as well as higher %.
ImageCucurbits and okra, soaking in GA-3, 5-1 by pepperhead212, on Flickr
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#19

Post: # 18853Unread post pepperhead212
Thu Apr 30, 2020 11:19 pm

Tonight, I got my cloner set up, but it was too late to start getting the cuttings in. Besides the basils and epazote, I'm not sure what else I need to put into it. Tomorrow finally looks decent, as do the rest of the days in the 7 day forecast, so maybe the tomatoes can go in, and that's my normal day for it - May 1st!

Peppers are really slow this year - looks like 3 of the new varieties did not germinate, despite 3 attempts. One variety that I got from India finally got here (usually I don't have that problem with seeds from foreign sources), and in just 5 days I got 2 sprouts, so that's going to be very late. I'll have to re-map my pepper planting, so the smaller ones will be together.
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Re: pepperhead212's 2020 garden

#20

Post: # 18894Unread post pepperhead212
Fri May 01, 2020 3:37 pm

I got the tomatoes in today! 28 plants, of 21 varieties, plus two tomatillos of a new (to me) variety: Everona. They were the only plants that got somewhat rootbound, and one had a hint of a blossom on it, which I removed. I still have 5 extra plants, of some of my favorites, in case something happened to any of them. The rain started just as I was finishing, which gave me an excuse to stop. After a break, I'll get working on getting the cuttings in the cloner.
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