Floridians-out in the garden

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Barb_FL
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#41

Post: # 30322Unread post Barb_FL
Thu Sep 10, 2020 6:57 pm

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Just a few things to update; not sure if I should put info here or on the Charles Wilbur thread.

All 5 of the better boy tomatoes have finally germinated. They were all sown on 8/28 in the same 4" pot and the early ones are ready to get their own pot, but the last one is just popping through. I also sown 2 in a wet paper towel method and they took 6 days to germinate. They were coated so I wet them to get the coating off. Not really speedy. Elaine, keep this in mind if you haven't sown the BB yet.

Walmart's Pro-mix - I added perlite to it and it became really nice. As is (without perlite) it was great for the wicking part of the EB.

Earthboxes, I used 2 being solarized and there was a lot of mix in the bottom. I emptied and put the screens/shade cloth back in and added new mix to the solarized mix for the boxes. What a drag this will be. I also didn't use any dry fertz. I also didn't use a bamboo stick (aka Dave) for the middle and put a couple small bamboo sticks crossways. I am also covering the outside of the EB with the most sun exposure to keep the temps down on the mix. The old Pro-Mix bags are great for this.

I re-read the Dave's advanced pruning method and counted my vertical wires and there are 8. He mentions 18 for 18 stems. Then I counted the vertical wires on the really wide 18' cages and there are 8 on them as well. They are just further apart. Maybe I can do 2 stems per wire once I get into his method.

I'm holding off doing any of the Dave's method on these early plants because it is just so early.

Here's a picture of the Magic Mountain and Ruby Crush tomatoes. I'm buzzing with the electric toothbrush since I haven't seen the orchid bees.

Tomorrow I'm going to plant out Rosella since they are budding by not flowering yet. Hopefully, the more blooms will bring in the bees.
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Barb_FL
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#42

Post: # 30323Unread post Barb_FL
Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:07 pm

Elaine - look for really heavy duty microgreen trays (10x20). I got some from the local hydro store (holes and no holes - they are great and not flimsy at all - just what you are looking for. I will start looking online for you.

These look good and white too. White is always a plus for me.



Here's more of their lineup including 10x10 squares.

https://www.amazon.com/stores/page/B9FF ... ageIndex=2
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MsCowpea
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#43

Post: # 30324Unread post MsCowpea
Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:17 pm

Barb, thanks for the suggestion but I have heavy duty trays with no holes as well. They are called perma-something I think. I just don’t want to drill holes in them. And the micro green trays are just too shallow. I have them too. I would like them to be at least 4 inches deep???
I found some used bread trays that were deep online but they were expensive ($20?) and then you need to pay shipping as well.
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Last edited by MsCowpea on Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#44

Post: # 30325Unread post MsCowpea
Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:20 pm

Just saw your post. That is too funny as I have those white trays in my cart on Amazon but didn’t buy them. I loved that they were white but I figured if I have to drill holes I might as well drill holes in the light green perma trays I have ( and I really don’t want to do that.) Perma trays are really hard plastic too , the kind that
cracks if dropped or drilled.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#45

Post: # 30326Unread post MsCowpea
Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:34 pm

these might work .

It costs $18 to ship 8 . But I think you have to be wholesaler to order from this site.

https://www.webstaurantstore.com/noble- ... MUQAvD_BwE
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Barb_FL
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#46

Post: # 30327Unread post Barb_FL
Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:43 pm

Oh - you want something similar to what Marsha has. Maybe she will chime in before you order.

Found it: Marsha posted about this previously:

https://www.zoro.com/ssi-schaefer-grate ... xQnQkRsmW4
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#47

Post: # 30328Unread post Ginger2778
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:08 pm

Elaine, these SSI Schaeffer trays will outlast you, and have built in handles on all 4 sides. I bought 15. One came warped a very tiny bit totally useable, but they replaced it for free, and told me to just dispose of the warped one. I kept and use it. This company also gives you free shipping after a $75 purchase.
These are them in use.
Oh, and they also have a thicker solid wall tray, but you have to drill holes in it. I'll see if I can find a photo of those since I have 20 of them too. (Found em!)Both hold 24 of the 3.5 inch pots.
https://www.zoro.com/ssi-schaefer-grate ... /G8533253/
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#48

Post: # 30329Unread post MsCowpea
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:13 pm

Barb, I did start the better boys. Got the same ones as you have with the coating. I hope they are good ones. someone wrote that the Big Beef seeds they get today are not as good as Big Beef seeds they got years ago. (They germinate fine but the tomatoes aren’t as good. )

I forgot the straw Wilber uses as a thick mulch is supposed to be weathered for 2 or 3 months . I just got it and will put some organic nitrogen on them to speed up the process. I do have two cages hooked together- that is 10 feet. I should shoot for 15 feet !!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
but would break my neck tying the 18 stems (ala Wilber) from a ladder.

Dave uses store bought steer/cow manure in his self watering containers and it obviously works great. Are you putting some in the earthbox?
It seems an important component.
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Last edited by MsCowpea on Fri Sep 11, 2020 9:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#49

Post: # 30330Unread post MsCowpea
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:15 pm

Marsha, those look very good. Super sturdy. I will check them out. That was a great find on the red ones.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#50

Post: # 30331Unread post Ginger2778
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:29 pm

MsCowpea wrote:
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:15 pm
Marsha, those look very good. Super sturdy. I will check them out. That was a great find on the red ones.
Not sure they are red anymore, but they are available. Honestly, I prefer the grey ones, they are sturdy, but much lighter weight. You can't go wrong with either.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#51

Post: # 30334Unread post MsCowpea
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:42 pm

I prefer the grey ones too as they look more open and airier (?).
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#52

Post: # 30335Unread post Barb_FL
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:51 pm

MsCowpea wrote:
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:13 pm
Barb, I did start the better boys. Got the same ones as you have with the coating. I hope they are good ones. someone wrote that the Big Beef seeds they get today are not as good as Big Beef seeds they got years ago.

I forgot the straw Wilber uses as a thick mulch is supposed to be weathered for 2 or 3 months . I just got it and will put some organic nitrogen on them to speed up the process. I do have two cages hooked together- that is 10 feet. I should shoot for 15 feet !!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
but would break my neck tying the 18 stems (ala Wilber) from a ladder.

Dave uses store bought steer/cow manure in his self watering containers and it obviously works great. Are you putting some in the earthbox?
It seems an important component.
Dave uses really low end ingredients from the big box stores (including the steer manure) so I feel like it is a safe bet that he is using Better Boy seeds from Ferry Morse / HD (or equivalent) too.

That's disappointing about Big Beef ; I bought new seeds from Harris Seeds / Garden Trends - their seeds have been great for me. My old packs were from TGS so they are reputable too.

i have so many cage extensions I could get to 15' but would need 10' or more T-Posts to handle the wind. I guess I could put them closest to the house because it is a great spot and not as subject to wind from all sides; but I don't want to waste the premier stop for Better Boy.

Dave's plants weren't very tall.

I haven't done anything from Dave's method yet (except the bamboo crosses vs a bamboo pole upright). I usually don't do an Earthbox until a month from now. I might as well do what I've been doing so if it goes badly, I won't blame the method.

I don't know where I can get that steer manure from. I don't think the local HD or Lowes sells it. I'm good with using other teas though.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#53

Post: # 30337Unread post Ginger2778
Thu Sep 10, 2020 9:06 pm

MsCowpea wrote:
Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:42 pm
I prefer the grey ones too as they look more open and airier (?).
Definitely airier.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#54

Post: # 30338Unread post MsCowpea
Thu Sep 10, 2020 9:53 pm

i.e. steer manure
I tried to see if it was available around here, seems to be a California thing.
If I didn’t have such a negative view of Black cow you’d think that could be a substitution but I tried it in an experiment and it was awful.
(ADDED: maybe I should try it again???—not sure)
I have bought the cheaper cow manure (Timberline) in bags before. I guess cow manure is the same as steer manure . Hard to believe that stuff is so great
but his (Calif. Tomatoman) results with the store bought /manure compost are great.

You’re right about the seeds. Ferry Morse is very well known and available everywhere.


ADDED: I been using modified Wilber for a long time. This year I was just trying to make a better Wilber Type compost (heavy on green material) and use the compost tea he recommends but barely mentions. Plus try the pruning and training. Though I am trying a Better Boy as he did I also have other heirloom and hybrids to try with the same technique but with a different compost made without the cover crop. Not going for any extreme height with those.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#55

Post: # 30348Unread post MsCowpea
Fri Sep 11, 2020 8:59 am

Thanks for the tip on Zoro trays. I ordered some different sizes to see which I prefer and then will order more. I thought I might like some of the half size ones. Anyway shipping is free if you spend $50 which is easy to do and as Marsha says they will last forever. I lost some of my old trays by loaning them out, this time , with the new trays , people will have to leave their passport or first born child until I get them back. :lol:
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#56

Post: # 30349Unread post Ginger2778
Fri Sep 11, 2020 9:33 am

I have been asked to loan mine out, I just won't. I tell them they arent my property, they used to not be, they were owned by the community garden, but then I bought the red ones from them.
At Zoro - There was free ship on $75, as of 2 days ago. If its free ship on $50 that's a really good deal.
Edited to say yes! Free shipping on $50 orders now! Excellent!
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#57

Post: # 30496Unread post Ginger2778
Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:50 am

Promix HP - Success! Yipee! This is photo heavy. The second group is 230 tomato seedlings, a crew of new Master Gardener Volunteer grads came over yesterday, masks in place; and this morning all are alive, and leaning toward the light, a good first sign of health and vigor. As much as last year's plant out had massive death, these are doing great! Last year we used Promix BX, it was so wet and dense.
This year we added less water to the HP and mixed it thoroughly to make sure it was still light and fluffy, then planted as usual. Good to have a success and know there is a better product for seedlings. First group is last week's plant out of peppers and eggplants. Haven't lost a single one!
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#58

Post: # 30501Unread post Barb_FL
Sun Sep 13, 2020 1:36 pm

Looks great Marsha. Your trays fit perfectly in your new raised beds. Will you leave them there overnight? We have had so many rain cells come through for 2 days now and huge wind gusts accompanying the rain. I put all my plants in the porch as close to the house as possible; totally protected on 2 sides. The only plants that were left to mother nature were my 3 filled Earthboxes and a couple of root pouches. I'm so leary of hurricanes and having to move earthboxes, I started filling the Root Pouches.

Did you and Elaine get a lot of bands coming from the TS Sally?

-----
Elaine - Those Magic Mountain plants are certainly fast growers. I've followed Dave's and Wilbur's on putting the bamboo side ways. Worked great except when the wind knocked some off; but much easier for me and saving time vs than tying an upright pole in the center to all sides.

Mountain Magic is putting out several suckers some are 4-6"; I really don't see how I will be able to get them on the outside though. Thinking ahead to Better Boy /Big Beef.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#59

Post: # 30505Unread post MsCowpea
Sun Sep 13, 2020 2:50 pm

Marsha, they look great but life is not exciting when you plan ahead like that. :lol:

I had seedling trays out in that terrible rainy, windy storm we just had. That is when I decided I should put plastic on trailer frame but the wind was whipping it around so bad couldn’t do it. Hurriedly tried to get some of the trays inside and some under eaves of house in a downpour. :roll: I don’t have a covered patio, wish I did about a million times. I have been meaning to send in my application to Procrastinators Club
Of America for years but they won’t take you if you apply too soon.


Barb, re: tying to outside of cage. I have read Wilber’s explanation for years. I believe Dave is doing the exact same thing with the 18 stems but one of his photos does help a lot to understand it. The one where everything is going to the outside and the inside of the cage is sort of empty. As you said , you have to get the branches to the outside of the cage.
I am hoping with the Better Boy it will be easier to do as the leaves need to be super long. My Better Boys (and others) got all spindly from lack of light so I rummaged up a grow light
In the shed and they are now basking in the fluorescent brightness. My second batch of seeds should do better with more light. I normally never use a light as my patio had dappled sun but now it is totally shaded from trees until about 2 or 3 and then it cooks.

You are so far ahead with those Mountain Magic’s.
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Re: Floridians-out in the garden

#60

Post: # 30511Unread post Ginger2778
Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:56 pm

Barb, yes, I have been leaving them all day and night for the last 3 days. They stay covered if rain is going to happen. They were covered all day yesterday and until about 11 this am. We got plenty if bands from TS Sally, it was crazy at about 2:30 this am.

Elaine - thanks! Having a patio with a roof makes so much possible. Our team was able to plant out under it yesterday, in the midst of a storm. It was not even hot. Don't even hesitate, just do it!
That Procrastinator's Club application is hilarious! Had to wipe the iced coffee that shot out of my nose!
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