Author Topic: Gardening Thread  (Read 24447 times)

Offline |iR|Focalor

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Gardening Thread
« on: July 07, 2008, 11:29:50 AM »
As promised, here's a bunch of pics from my garden.

These are cantaloupe vines that I started from seed. By the end of the summer... I shouldn't have a driveway anymore, just a cantaloupe patch where my driveway USED to be.


Here's a closeup of one of the mellons that is beginning to form.


I started about 15 butternut squash seedlings, but only planted 6. Of those 6, only one survived. Probably a good thing, I planted about 12 last year and still have a huge basket full of butternut squash that I still haven't used. I've probably used 2 of them total since harvesting them all, hehe. Anyway, this is the butternut squash vine.


This is a closeup of one of the flowers near the base of the butternut squash vine. You can see the honey bees collecting pollen inside of it.


This is a closeup of one of the butternut squashes beginning to form.


These are my clusters of cucumber vines. I've already harvested quite a few from them. If I remember correctly, they are Marketmore 76, also started from seed.


These are my zucchini and yellow crookneck squash bushes. Some are doing a lot better than others for some weird reason. Yes, all these are from seed too. Everything in my garden is from seed.


Here's a closeup of one of the zucchinis as its growing.


This is my tomato and bell pepper plot. I have 20 individual tomato plants: 9 Roma, 3 Parks Whopper, 2 Sweet 100, 2 Beefmaster, 2 Bonnie Original, and 2 Mountain Pride (heirloom). I have pinestraw covering the ground around the tomato plants to hold moisture into the soil better. Makes weeding a bit of a pain in the ass, but I end up having to water them a lot less frequently. Some of these tomato plants are reaching 5+ feet tall.


Here are the bell pepper plants on the end of the row.


This is my plot of orka. I transplanted seedlings out to this loaction in mid-spring, but they were not hardened off properly and 90% of them died. In late-spring I sowed seeds directly into the soil since it was warm enough to promote positive germination. I haven't watered them as frequently as I should, otherwise they would probably be 5 times taller by now.


Here's some of the goodies I've harvest from my garden this past weekend.
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Offline |iR|Focalor

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2008, 05:31:30 AM »

Nice, healthy looking plants.  I can tell you talk to them. Is the soil naturally productive or do you fertilize? I have never tasted a butternut squash.  ::)  Maybe next year.

Eh, some are healthy. My squash bushes tend to do well until July and then they all die by August. So far, I haven't sprayed any liquid sevin for the worms and bores that usually infest my squash bushes, but one has died mysteriously. I was thinking that maybe a stray dog pissed on it since I found a pile of dogshit out there right before it died. Now one of my other yellow crookneck bushes is beginning to change leaf color from a deep healthy green to a lighter green, almost yellowish. The leaves are starting to curl over and sag as if it's not getting enough water. I have no clue what's going on, if it's some kind of disease, there are no indicators of one. I've visually scoured every inch of the plants looking for a place where a bore might've tunneled into the vine, but nothing. It's pretty weird how well some things do and how other ones seem to NOT grow. The soil in that area by the house has NOT been tilled or worked, nor has it been fertilized other than with an occasional application of some miracle grow in one of those bottle feeders you attach to a garden hose, which I apply every 2 or 3 weeks. The soil is a bright red just like you see in the picture of the bell peppers, so it's fairly acidic. There's also a few patches of thick and hard red clay, perhaps that's why some of the squash bushes are smaller. My shovel won't even penetrate that damned clay until I jump up and down on it like it owes me money, so I know that roots sure won't penetrate it either.

Butternut squash is much larger than yellow squash, it looks a lot like a gourd. If cooked properly, it comes out in a consistency like mashed potatoes and tastes even better than sweet potatoes. Really good shit.

One thing I have growing for the first time is the "Sweet Meat" winter squash - supposedly a great keeper.  Plenty of blooms, and the vines are running, but no fruit yet.  :exqueezeme:

Never heard of that before. Typically all the fruits on winter squash plants will be harvested the last week in August. I'm not sure if they'd grow any further past that point even if the temperatures were high enough. If there's flowers on it, probably nothing to worry about, they should start forming little fruits behind the newer unopened flowers at the base of each leaf stem pretty soon. Mine started flowering about a week or two ago and only started fruiting this weekend.

I tried some Texas Heirloom Red okra and it's growing well (thick red stalks and BIG green leaves) and has been pan fried for a taste test, which it passed. I also planted some Asparagus Beans (actually in the pea family) and they are running all over the trellis and producing well. I sauteed some in olive oil and they are quite tasty.

I buy my seeds from places like Wal-Mart or Home Depot, they typically don't have any heirloom types of seeds. Where do you find a good selection of heirloom varieties? I'm thinking probably by ordering them over the internet. I may end up doing that this winter, I've typically been waiting until the beginning of spring and then heading out to a store to get them, and by then there isn't a wide variety of things to choose from.

I notice you have several types of cucurbits growing in the same area and from what I have heard/read they readily cross within species, but rarely between species. Any trouble with this? Do you save seeds?

So far, the only things that seem to producing very odd looking fruits are the yellow squash bushes. I have 3 different kinds: early golden summer crookneck, yellow crookneck, and zucchini. All of the yellow squashes I've had so far have green sploches on them, perhaps the zucchini has something to do with it, I'm not sure.

I tried saving some cantaloupe seeds last year, but I ended up throwing them out. I figured they wouldn't do as well as ones I could buy from a store... I was wrong. I had cantaloupe growing last year in the tomato plot. Most of the cantaloupes sat in the wet soil and rotted open. I tried getting rid of most of the seeds they spilled. Come spring, I had a bazillion little cantaloupe seedlings all over the place. I even had tomato seedlings from where I'd left rotten tomatoes sitting there. If my cantaloupes do better this year sitting on pinestraw, then I'll probably dry out a bunch of seeds from one of them and use them next year. Other than that, I really have no use for any seeds. I like to try different things, and cantaloupe is the one thing I know produces abundantly and I'll definitely eat it. If they all rot on the bottoms again like they did last year, I'm just gonna try watermellons next year instead.
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Offline Art

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2008, 04:19:33 PM »
Nice variety you have there Foc. 20 tomato plants will be enough for salsa all summer and then some, mmm. But where's the jalopenas?
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Offline |iR|Focalor

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2008, 07:17:12 PM »
No jalapenos, maybe next year. I have one tabasco pepper plant though. I had it growing in a pot on the porch and it had started to form plenty of flowers, but before any of them bloomed at all, they all fell off at the base of the flower stems. I transplanted out into some empty space by the birdbath, hopefully it will yield SOMETHING before the end of the summer. Tabasco plants will usually produce a good portion of peppers on one plant, I was hoping to make some pickled tabasco peppers or some kind of hot sauce with them.
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Offline Art

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2008, 10:14:41 PM »
I fear the heebie jeebies from not having my garden fresh salsa this year. What was I thinking!?
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Offline [BTF] Reflex

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2008, 04:33:44 AM »
Having an apartment,  we garden out of pots :)

I'll see if I can get some pics,  would love to have more room.
Property looks great Focalor
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Offline |iR|Focalor

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2008, 06:13:13 AM »
Having an apartment,  we garden out of pots :)

From my experience, veggies in pots never do as well as the ones that I plant out into the yard. It doesn't matter how big the pot is, what kind of potting soil I use, and how much fertilizer I provide for it... they NEVER do as well. My tomato plants are an excellent example. I have two in pots on the porch. I have watered them, given them plenty of sunlight, I've even fertilized them MORE regularly than the ones in the garden plot,... and they have 1/4 to 1/8 the growth of what's in the garden. The ones in the garden produce tons of leaves which is good because it shades the fruits from the sun which will burn them and turn the flesh from a healthy green to completely white. The ones in pots don't produce nearly as many flowers, leaves, and running branches. The soil acidity has a lot to do with it. Dark potting soil is excellent for root growth, but the red soil in the garden is 5 to 10 times more acidic (and rich in other vital nutrients due to how I add fertilizer to the soil in the spring before planting). The acidity not only stimulates rapid and rampant leaf production, it also makes the fruits much sweeter. Some of my tomatoes taste almost like they've been injected with sugar-water, it's awesome.

Planting so many different varieties so close together like I have, I've been suspecting that a few might cross-pollinate. So far, only the Sweet 100's have. They normally have long clusters of small tomatoes that are about the size of grapes. I have a few clusters where the first 2 fruits on the stem are about the size of a tennis ball.
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Offline lidz

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2008, 11:03:55 AM »
Got a question about small gardens, I have a small area to plant some stuff (about the size of a ping pong table) but am curious if it is best to use that area to plant a bunch of random things or stick to one thing and rotate the crops every year?  With such a small area, does it require the need to rotate crops or to have a diverse grouping of crops?  I tend to kill every plant that comes in contact with me, I am the anti-green thumb.

Focalor - your home and garden is so suburban and warm it is funny how your image doesn't match it.  With the photo's you have posted, I expected something different.  Funny how perceptions can run wild, based on simple impressions.  Not a cut on you, just found it funny.
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Offline |iR|Focalor

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2008, 06:09:44 PM »
a bunch of random things or stick to one thing and rotate the crops every year?  With such a small area, does it require the need to rotate crops or to have a diverse grouping of crops?

It depends. Certain things don't do well together. For example, (from what I've heard anyway, never done it myself) you don't want to plant habanero peppers right beside tomatoes. They will end up making the tomatoes spicy. If you have one plant that could be harmed by a large presence of ants, you shouldn't plant okra beside it. If there are any ants in the vicinity of okra, they will crawl up the okra to the sappy flowers to feed on the sap. They don't normally harm the okra, but occasionally they WILL chew at the formed pods after the flowers fall off.

There are certain things that shouldn't be planted in the same spot year after year. I forget exactly what veggies have those requirements, maybe potatoes and carrots, you'll just have research it online somewhere before making a final decision. With a small area like that, there are some things that you should not attempt to plant. Corn for example. You should have enough room for a minimum of 5 or 6 rows, otherwise they will not pollinate properly. Vining crops are probably a bad idea too. Cantaloupes spread rapidly and take a lot of room, especially if you do like I did and plant them in clusters of 5 or 6 seedlings. The area I planted mine in is actually too small, I may end up having trim off some of the running vines. I'm trying to train them back into the center to allow those vines to develop more mellons... which is really a dumb idea anyway, I'll NEVER be able to eat this much cantaloupe. If it's an area about 10 feet by 10 feet, thats really not a lot of room. You could probably squeeze 4 tomato plants in that area, maybe one squash bush (which are usually planted as clusters of 2 to 3 seedlings), maybe 12 to 16 pepper plants.

Another thing, for MOST veggies to grow vigorously, they need an area that is in full view of the sun all day long. Under a canopy a trees or the side of a house where it will only receive full sun from sunrise until 1pm is not a good spot.

The best thing to do if you're wanting to start a garden is figure out what you would rather eat the most, then research it a bit to figure out if it's doable, then do it. Just remember that SHIT GROWS. You might get a seedling in a store that looks small, but don't surprised if it grows 5 times bigger than you think it will. Take a look at my tomatoes in the first post and then in this picture:

That was taken at the end of May, they grew like hell in a month and a half.


Focalor - your home and garden is so suburban and warm it is funny how your image doesn't match it.  With the photo's you have posted, I expected something different.  Funny how perceptions can run wild, based on simple impressions.  Not a cut on you, just found it funny.

This is just my summer home. In the winter I live in an evil dark castle in the barren frozen icy wilderness of Nar'Lythia Gorhag with flesh-eating blood orcs. Hehe, like a couple of the guys in my clan say, "he's so goth, he shits bats."

This is more the gardening I was thinking of...



Who says I don't? There's an awful lot of woods by the pond below the dam... :innocent:
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Offline |iR|Focalor

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2008, 08:46:18 AM »
I GOT'S HORNY 'MATERS, Y'ALL!!!




Butternut squash is harvested in August or September. Hmmmm, I don't think it's gonna make it.


Peter Piper picked a peck of tabasco peppers... he wasn't wearing gloves and decided to masturbate directly afterwards. Peter Piper is now in need of a dermatologist.


Okra flowers is purty.




The okra plot...


The tomato plot as the traditional yearly mold ravages it to death.
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Offline |iR|Focalor

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2008, 07:17:03 PM »
My butternut squash (winter squash) consisted of probably 8 seedlings with true leaves already formed when I transplanted them out. Only one survived. And, as you can see in that photo, it's deader than a doornail now.  'Twas neither disease nor pests. 'Twas the tremendous heat, I suppose. I've watered it plenty, but I guess the searing UV rays from so many completely cloudless 100 degree days finally baked it into oblivion. Could have something to with global warming. My other squash plants wilted up and died one by one just like the butternut. The day I took those last photos, it was probably 10:30am when they were taken. By 12:30, a mere 3 hours later, the okra leaves began sagging and wilting. Luckily I noticed it at that time. I ran out there and watered the piss out of it and it picked back up. I had watered it the night before, WTF!!!! I didn't anticipate this kind of problem. Last year, I got NO rain ALL summer long. I've had a few days of rain, though not enough. If anything, I would think things should be doing better this year than last year. The temps are just as hot. Fuckin' weird! The weeds won't unexpectedly die though, hell no, no such luck. Just the shit I WANT to live... dies.  :frustration:
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Offline [BTF] Reflex

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2008, 06:30:28 AM »
My sunflower 'bush'  just came back from the dead last week,
deer came by and chomped EVERY bloomed bud early last month.  :frustration:
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Offline Pr0c3550r

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #12 on: August 13, 2008, 07:21:12 AM »
Rabbits ate my *cough* "bush". They left nothing but their little bitty shit balls. Aw, how thoughtful of them.  :-\

In the seedling stage they need to be protected.
Bunnies love to mow down those tender little tid bits.

HAhaa Reflex "good shit" lol
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Offline haunted

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2008, 01:27:07 PM »
Went down to my garden to make some salsa today. The cat's name is big, he's the shit. have you not seen a cooler pussy? Oh and that garden spider was huge.. i have a bigger hand than most ppl, and it's closer to the camera than the spider.
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Offline jägermonsta

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Re: Gardening Thread
« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2008, 01:31:40 PM »
Garden Spiders rule.

Use to throw japanese beetles into their web and watch them spin the fucker up. Good times.
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