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Thread: Garden tips

  1. #1
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    Garden tips

    How about everyone post a few of their favorites, or new things you have learned?

    For example: this is the first year I have planted potatoes in a smaller garden. I discovered radishes mature fast enough you can harvest them before the potatoes vine and take over all of the ground. I am sure there are others as well.

    I also love using cattle panels as trellis for climbing vegetables.

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  3. #2
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    Plant guilds...companion plant. Corn and pumpkin or winter squash. Tomatoes and basil and cukes and marigold and carrots. Plant annual and perennial herbs around fruit trees. Use worm castings everywhere. Compost everything and build your soil. Be bold and experiment. Plant double what you think you need or want.
    Daughter of a Ghost Town.

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    I grew up with traditional gardens. Plow, plant a single species, move over and do it again. Pretty rows with no mixing. How do I learn about multiple plantings of various species in the same area?

    What goes with what, how, when, etc

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  7. #4
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    I just interplant. I will do a couple 'traditional' rows of tomatoes with typical space between the plants and rows...but I will add a trellis right behind the last row of tomatoes with cucumbers vining up that. I will toss marigolds and basil seeds in the space between the tomato rows...and in the space behind the trellis I will plant carrots.
    In the corn just plant pole beans or pumpkins in between the rows.
    For fruit trees I just expand the weeded area around them and about 3 feet or more from their base I plant a semicircle of beneficial herbs. I have lemon balm around an apple, hyssop around a nectarine, and calendula (marigold species that is medicinal) around another apple tree and a few feet from that I have eggplant and cukes. I have a mulberry tree (about 4 ft high) with a lot of comfrey on 3 sides around it to fix nitrogen and provide a great healing herb for the household-from there I ahve 3 rock gardens with onions, then onions and a few strawberry plants (perennials) and a few basil and tomatoes and hot peppers. I plan to put more comfrey around my mayhaws and peaches. I have black eyed peas growing around the persimmons and not far from that I have planted a bunch of sweet potatoes which will vine and cover the ground-providing living mulch and great food. It is ugly as homemade sin cause it is in the beginning stages but once it all grows up bigger it will be a nice food forest. I will try to get pics tomorrow.
    In a forest there is no monocropping-everything builds on each other. There is the upper story tree, (oak) the understory tree (pawpaw or persimmon) and the vines and bushes (grape, passion fruit, blueberries or elderberry)...that is how nature does plant guilds and I work to emulate that with edibles and medicinals in my food forest. There are a lot of resources on this if you want to get into this sort of thing.

    Here are 2 of the front yard garden boxes my mom and I have going. They look small but they have a lot of food growing in them. The closest to the camera is loaded with tomatoes, marigolds and basil-the strings will be for the vining cukes (sumter and armenian). The furthest is mainly bush zuchinni with english peas vining-in the two corners of the front I have yard long beans growing and carrots behind the trellis.
    example.jpg
    Check out the guava doing the photo op in the far left corner. We have a larger corn/pumpkin/okra etc garden bed as well and fruit trees tucked everywhere. And a waterchestnut pool.
    Daughter of a Ghost Town.

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  9. #5
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    This is a good resource for food foresting. I have the kindle version of his book and I was impressed.
    http://secretgardenofsurvival.com/

    I just want to add that I believe in hard times there is a place for long and pretty rows of corn or wheat or what have you. When you have to feed 12 people a few beautiful zuchinnis intercropped under a pear tree ain't gonna cut it. However, I think there is a middle ground. I think a big trellis of squash near a plot of summer squash near a patch of pole beans growing up corn is great. A small patch of giant amaranth will provide good greens and a gluten free grain alternative and it is a weed and easy to grow. We have to get away from massive monocropping and we have to rebuild the soil or we are all gonna be screwed.
    Hope this helped.
    Daughter of a Ghost Town.

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  11. #6
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    I have a very small garden, but I've stopped using pesticides completely. I found a recipe for a spray that makes bugs stay away. It actually works!

    http://www.rodalesorganiclife.com/ho...ers-most-pests

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    Water and dish soap in a spray bottle works pretty good on lots of bugs, doesn't hurt most plants, and rinses away in the next watering.

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    Well, we just spent the last few hours of light in the garden. Got tomatoes and peppers in. Potatoes are going gangbusters, but the lettuce is a bust. Radishes and beets are doing exceptionally well. Spinach is a flop.

    Asparagus is concerning. It seems really sparse so far, but we can replant this fall if we need to, or add seed to the bed.

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    Redman, if it's heirloom seed, be sure to let some of the radishes bolt when they get toward their ending. You can mix the seeds with some chia, alfalfa, mung bean, broccoli, or other sprouts for a more-spicy crunch in your winter sprouting mixture. Or sprout in smaller amounts and "garnish" EVERYTHING with your "custom blend of micro-greens."

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  18. #10
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    One trick I used at the other house and will use again here is attaching guttering to the side of the house or barn. Fill it with potting soil and do it on the southern exposure. Grows greens and radishes all winter in my climate with just a sheet of platinum over it. Otherwise, if you want to look nicer, a Fram and a few sheets of plexiglass work and are easily removed.

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