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Old 01-15-2013, 11:27 PM
 
5,439 posts, read 5,269,455 times
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It worked with Pumpkins, Squashes, Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Okra, Wild Flowers and flower transplants. North Central Ohio. Abandoned for 8+ years field, eroded loamy soil with plenty of clay and rocks. We had a moderate drought this year. When this soil is dry it's tillable only with a pick-axe.

(semi)Wild flowers are the easiest, just cover lawn grass with an 2 inches + of top soil, rake it smooth, broadcast flower seeds, rake seeds in, and leave them alone. It wouldn't require watering under normal circumstances, but this year I had to water it twice in July. Surprisingly almost no grass, not even daffodils made it through that thin layer of top soil.



I have purchased 15 tonnes of concrete sand (coarser sand) and inadvertently covered a few pumpkin seeds (Connecticut Field) with that sand. It was the best pumpkins this year, 15lbs+. No fertilizer, no watering ever this year, no weeding, pumpkin leaves never wilted during the hottest summer days.


July 2012. Soil is hard as rock it's so dry. I decided to improve accidental pumpkin "no till". First comes a layer of grass clippings, on top I threw bits and pieces of organic manure from Wall Mart and sprinkled everything with top soil. I have spread seeds of okra, squashes, black radish as well as transplanted tomatoes and moss roses, everything was covered with 2"+ layer of concrete sand. It sounds like a lot of work, but it's so much faster and easier than conventional tilling. And tilling was not even an option in July. During the day, sand was extremely hot to touch, I thought all the seeds were dead but some (my guess 10%) did survive in that hell and produced nice squashes & okra.

It would have looked better had I trimmed edges, but grass on the edges didn't bother squash


And here are the fruits of my back breaking labor, my tilled pumpkin patch, I dug a hole, manually sieved numerous stones from the soil, mixed cleaned soil with fertilizer and filled holes with this improved soil. I have planted pumpkins and sunflowers, I have watered whenever I had a chance, it didn't help much, pumpkin yield was abysmal.


Last edited by RememberMee; 01-16-2013 at 12:56 AM..
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Old 01-16-2013, 12:20 AM
 
Location: rain city
2,958 posts, read 11,497,758 times
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I like your photos.

But I'm not exactly sure what message you're trying to convey with this post? Could you elaborate?
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Old 01-16-2013, 12:28 AM
 
5,439 posts, read 5,269,455 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azoria View Post
I like your photos.

But I'm not exactly sure what message you're trying to convey with this post? Could you elaborate?
With little bit of concrete sand you can have reasonable yields while avoding tilling, weeding and watering. It's a very straightforward message.

Last edited by RememberMee; 01-16-2013 at 12:55 AM..
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:50 AM
 
Location: southwestern PA
20,419 posts, read 38,694,184 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RememberMee View Post



I have purchased 15 tonnes of concrete sand (coarser sand)
15 tons - 30,000 pounds - is far from a " little bit of concrete sand "!

BTW - love the wildflowers! (No sand there according to your writeup).

Last edited by Pitt Chick; 01-16-2013 at 07:53 AM..
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Old 01-16-2013, 09:11 AM
 
5,439 posts, read 5,269,455 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitt Chick View Post
15 tons - 30,000 pounds - is far from a " little bit of concrete sand "!

BTW - love the wildflowers! (No sand there according to your writeup).
I didn't buy concrete sand for my garden, but I will in the future, 15 tonnes + delivery = $300 +/-, one just needs to stay away from the concrete mix operations, those would double charge you as the very least. Yes, wildflower bed had no sand on it, just top loamy soil on top of grass, they call it "Wooster series".

Last edited by RememberMee; 01-16-2013 at 09:39 AM..
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:01 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
18,758 posts, read 55,889,829 times
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Squash & pumpkins are interesting plants. If you can keep them from being overrun with squash bugs, keep from traipsing on the stems, and give them a place to start in the sun they can fare pretty well on their own. We had one volunteer under our deck a couple years back. Deer don't seem to bother them, so I might plant a few this spring to cover over some weeds.

BTW, care to share your secret on how you grew that propane tank? It looks very healthy.
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Old 01-20-2013, 04:30 PM
 
3,339 posts, read 7,802,721 times
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If I added any kind of sand to our awful Kansas soil, i'd have set concrete in no time. Any soil amendment depends on the type of soil you start with. Around here, compost is the key, and we have bins all over the place.
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Old 01-22-2013, 08:44 PM
 
Location: Land of Free Johnson-Weld-2016
6,473 posts, read 14,231,254 times
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Pretty wildflowers.
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