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Carbon 6

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Tallswife

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I do garden, however we moved late last summer, so I have nothing set up for this coming spring. I'll be looking into your links for ideas for our new garden area. Thank you!
 

Loyalist Dave

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Any gardeners out there?
Yep but I cheat. I will grow heirloom stuff, since I have a limited space, so why not grow something special? BUT I use a "field expedient hot house" for an early start and also I make and use self-watering containers. I make them from a couple 5 gallon buckets, so I sort of do a variation on Square Foot Gardening. I do this as sometimes my schedule gets very screwed up and we get some hot dry spells..., and when I should be checking the plants each day sometimes I get kept at work for a couple of days. Amazing how some conditions only need about 36 hours to roast your plants. Having a water reservoir for most of the plants saves my crops.

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Carbon 6

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I have raised beds and conventional field type gardens. Winter came early this year and shortened my season, so I'm looking into season extending items for next year. Maybe a poly tunnel, but definitely some cold frames. I lost a lot of food to the cold this year. Big changes coming next year, so I'm planning early.
 

Gun Tramp

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You betcha, C6. Vegetable production is a way of life for me, second only to guns. Cold frames (under glass) require constant, and I mean constant, monitoring to avoid overheating. I know from experience, having fried my share of expensive seedlings. No room for error; it can happen literally in seconds when one is lulled into the false sense of security of a cloudy day and then have the sun come out, even if briefly. I quit using glass years ago as a result, instead, I use uncovered frames which still offer protection for germination and the emerging seedlings. To provide heat for the frames I once built a pile of dampened compost materials mixed with purchased blood meal for an oxidizer. When I turned the pile a few days later to speed decomposition, steam billowed out, the pile was spread to make a bed perhaps ten inches deep, and seeded flats were then placed on the heating compost rather than planting directly into the bed thus formed. Lots of monkey business but one can indeed get a bit of a head start without the danger of a glass-covered frame. I can't stress enough how tricky covered frames can be; one may cover the frames for overnight protection but must uncover promptly at sunrise! Old storm widows are often tried, but screens are actually more useful, providing some protection without the danger of overheating. Of course, I'm talking about seed starting here, not "growing out." Those I know who've tried growing to a larger size under glass report even more challenges. The tunnels shown in the Williamsburg link are actually all the rage as of late, termed "low tunnels" and "row covers." You may find Johnny's Selected Seeds catalog helpful regarding those items.
 

Carbon 6

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. Cold frames (under glass) require constant, and I mean constant, monitoring to avoid overheating. I know from experience, having fried my share of expensive seedlings. No room for error; it can happen literally in seconds when one is lulled into the false sense of security of a cloudy day and then have the sun come out, even if briefly. I quit using glass years ago as a result, instead,
I'm thinking of constructing a large cold frame 4'x8' glass, 6 feet tall, to make venting and temperature management easier. I guess that would be a mini greenhouse. :D
 

Ames

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The horned toad says we should go to Mexico.
Still going to cook the seedlings unless you put in ventilation fans, louvered, with thermostats.
I talked Mrs. Ames into letting me do it in the house. Set up 2-8' tables with timed light towers and thermostatically controlled heat matts.
144 pepper plants and 60 tomatoes, when they go out to the low tunnels I start 48 squash and all the kale, collards and b. sprouts. She gives up floor space for 10 weeks and gains it all back with a packed root cellar, dried chilies, dried tomatoes, canned sauce and a mountain of squash.
Had to cut back on taters. Just cant dig 1500 lbs. of taters with my back anymore.
 

nhmoose

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Our Rhubarb patch is doing it's thing along with our asparagus raised 5'x16' patch.

Sons new 12"x20" greenhouse ready for use this march. The rest is dormant right now.

We quit our 2 acre plot of taters 2 years ago due to it being a lot of work, bugs and the digging in October so I know the feeling we were digging 5000 lbs. a year, the food pantries miss us.
 

Kansas Kid

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My garden beds are large tires that I cut the side walls out and fill with dirt. Push bamboo stakes around the edges to support chicken wire.
 

ppg1949

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I use five gallon buckets but I usually only plant tomatoes and okra. I enclose them in chicken wire because one of our dogs digs the dirt and another eats the tomatoes. Funny thing about these buckets. The blue ones from Lowe's start breaking after a couple of years but the green ones from Menard's don't. My grandson said that different color dyes affect the plastic in different ways. I suppose that is why white buckets seem to last longer.
 

ppg1949

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I've used them to plant The Three Sisters (corn, beans, and squash), peppers, and varieties of lettuce and cabbage that you can peel the outer leaves off of without picking the whole heads.
I drill a one inch hole in bottom for drainage but I'm sure how necessary it is.
 

Gun Tramp

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Parched corn will be something entirely new to me; the subject appears frequently in the camp cooking forum and it sounds excellent. Finding the seed took some time but here's two varieties apparently suited to parching. I've grown a few open-pollinated flint corn types and am familiar with their usually low yields versus hybrids. No problem, just plant more!002.JPG
 

Carbon 6

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Mind your teeth if you are eating parched corn.

Dang birds and rodents lower my yields more than anything.
 
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