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Old 01-16-2015, 09:12 PM
 
Location: Denver/Boulder Zone 5b
1,340 posts, read 3,144,431 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nonchalance View Post
The problem with my (container) potatoes was a combination of poison dirt from a dollar store, which slew everything it touched, a bad container, and realizing both factors too late. Once we got an Official Potato Bag, and some decent soil, they grew well. But as I say, too late for a really great crop.
Well do a thread or respond to this one and let me (us) know how they do! It seems everyone has different results growing potatoes, but isn't that true for everything all of us grow? Ultimately, we all garden differently (which is what makes it so fun to share!) and at the end of the day, Mother Nature wins out regardless..
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Old 01-18-2015, 08:39 PM
 
Location: Near the Coast SWCT
65,167 posts, read 47,514,370 times
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I'm a winter lover but this winter has made me want spring come fast. I CANT STAND rain and 30s which we been getting. We haven't even had a 2" snowfall yet

With that said I found myself getting the itch to garden and looking back at my Garden threads. This thread made my itch even itchier. LOL

Enjoy. Ground frozen here (and now flooded) so it's another 2 months till I can be out there digging.

Seeds in 2 months!
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Old 01-19-2015, 04:46 PM
 
Location: Denver/Boulder Zone 5b
1,340 posts, read 3,144,431 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post
I'm a winter lover but this winter has made me want spring come fast. I CANT STAND rain and 30s which we been getting. We haven't even had a 2" snowfall yet

With that said I found myself getting the itch to garden and looking back at my Garden threads. This thread made my itch even itchier. LOL

Enjoy. Ground frozen here (and now flooded) so it's another 2 months till I can be out there digging.

Seeds in 2 months!
Cambium, sounds like your winter has been yucky. We've had a pretty normal winter, really.. snowfall close to normal and a few super cold outbreaks, but otherwise relatively benign. This weekend was gorgeous with highs in the 60s and tons of sunshine, although it's been very windy. Around here you take wind and warmth or calm and cold during the winter..

It'll be way too cold here to do anything outdoors until late-March at the earliest. I've only started a few things from seeds indoors that I know will take a long time to mature and should do well under grow lights. I REALLY want to start my tomatoes and peppers right now, but I know I need to wait another month at least.

I'll do another update in a week regarding the Extra Dwarf Pak Choi and the herbs I have started indoors already. All is going really well so far..

Please do a 2015 thread as SOON as you start something!!
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Old 01-23-2015, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Denver, Colorado U.S.A.
14,174 posts, read 22,544,005 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NickMan7 View Post
Cambium, sounds like your winter has been yucky. We've had a pretty normal winter, really.. snowfall close to normal and a few super cold outbreaks, but otherwise relatively benign. This weekend was gorgeous with highs in the 60s and tons of sunshine, although it's been very windy. Around here you take wind and warmth or calm and cold during the winter..

It'll be way too cold here to do anything outdoors until late-March at the earliest. I've only started a few things from seeds indoors that I know will take a long time to mature and should do well under grow lights. I REALLY want to start my tomatoes and peppers right now, but I know I need to wait another month at least.

I'll do another update in a week regarding the Extra Dwarf Pak Choi and the herbs I have started indoors already. All is going really well so far..

Please do a 2015 thread as SOON as you start something!!
I kick off my gardening season in early March in Denver! Starting with the pansies, and then in early March, I thatch my lawn, mow it, put down Spring fertilizer (hand water grass if there is no snow on the way), clean out and trim the xeriscaped areas, put down fresh mulch, then hope for warmth! Since we typically get some very warm days in March here, I'll get in enough hand-watering to have a green lawn by late March, then it's ready for a good mowing in early April. Of course, that all depends on crazy Denver weather.
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Old 02-06-2015, 12:56 PM
 
Location: Denver/Boulder Zone 5b
1,340 posts, read 3,144,431 times
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Default February Update!

With gorgeous weekend weather looming (yesterday was 63, today's supposed to be 70 and tomorrow and Sunday are supposed to be around 70), I figured now would be a good time to update my original plans for the upcoming season!

I have already begun some indoor projects in relative earnest:

Greens:

1. The Extra Dwarf Pak Choy project under grow lights is going much better than I realistically expected and the greens should be mature and ready to harvest in the next two weeks; days to maturity is 30-40 so they're right on time! They were seeded in 6-cell flats on 01/11/15, then I transplanted 24 of them to 3" containers on 01/19/15 and they just grow thicker and greener each day. They aren't getting much taller at this point (about 3"), but they're definitely filling in through the center, as one would expect. I keep the grow light about 4-6" above the plants and that seems to work perfectly fine. I am IN LOVE with these little plants! They are so much fun! Photo below to show the progress as of 02/05/15.

2. Cimarron, Henderson's Black-Seeded Simpson and Sunset lettuces have been started in several 6-cell flats (seeded 02/04/15). All 3 varieties have already sprouted. These are mostly for indoor fun and I do not intend to transplant these outdoors. I will direct sow into containers outdoors in early April, along with about 4 other varieties of lettuce and two varieties of spinach.

Herbs:

1. Wild Thyme and Sweet Marjoram are doing very well (pictured below with the Choys - as of 02/05/15). I started them on 01/11/15 in plastic egg cartons - which make the PERFECT little germinating vessels. They were transplanted into 3" containers, as well. They will be receiving a trim this weekend and will be transplanted to 6" pots next week. My hope is to keep them going indoors through transplant time in May, but they may get a bit unruly. I'll be starting more seeds in the next few weeks.

2. A 6-cell flat of Sweet Basil germinated in less than 48 hours and is doing very well. As with all of the herbs I've started or will be starting, I will keep these as tidy as possible until it's time to get them outdoors. I can always seed more later if they get too unruly or don't do well.

3. I started one 6-cell flat of Cilantro that is germinating intermittently, but it's germinating so I am pleased with that. I started another and am still waiting for something to germinate.

4. I attempted to start Wild Zaatar Oregano in a plastic egg carton and it failed miserably. Don't really know what I did wrong, but only 2-3 sprouts came up over the course of 3 weeks. Ditched it. Planted another plastic egg carton with Standard Oregano and it has germinated beautifully in just two days.

5. I started Rosemary in a plastic egg carton on 01/11/15 and still have ZERO germination, which I understand is not terribly unusual. As a comparison, I also started some in a 6-cell flat (about a week later). Zero germination there so far, as well. We'll see!

6. Parsley and additional herbs will be started from seed in the coming weeks or I may just direct sow them in containers outdoors at the appropriate time. I really want to reserve my light space for tomatoes, peppers and eggplant since I will have a combined 70 or so plants when factoring in neighbors, friends and extras.

Peppers, etc.:

As this is my first season starting anything from seed indoors, I feel I need a little practice getting things going before committing (and ultimately subjecting) my entire garden to my newbieness. Since I ordered FAR more seeds for FAR more varieties of plants than any one human will EVER need, I have started a number of "sacrificial" peppers, tomatoes and eggplant in 6-cell flats. Normal timing for seed starting in my area/zone (5b) isn't until early-mid March, so I figured a solid 6-week period of practice should be good enough to see how things develop in that time. I have 20 or more linear feet of grow space, so if I end up having the space, I will keep these plants going through transplant time (mid-May). If not, I will dispatch them.

1. I started a 6-cell flat of Jalapenos, two seeds per cell, on 01/19/15 and have had 100% germination for a total of 12 plants. I am quite pleased with that! The seedlings are about two days into their first set of true leaves and as soon as they get their second set, I will transplant into 3" containers. They're about 3" tall. Photo below showing Jalapanos as of 02/05/15.

2. I also started a 6-cell flat of Sweet Banana peppers, two seeds per cell, on 01/19/15 and have only had 50% germination (one seedling per cell) for a total of 6 plants. Growth-wise, they're a tad smaller than the Jalapeno seedlings, but they're perfectly healthy and I will follow the same regimen.

3. A tomato variety called Ten Fingers of Naples was started in one cell of a 6-cell flat on 01/19/15 and is now putting on its second set of true leaves. I will transplant to a 3" container this weekend or early next week.

4. Milestone (yellow) and Red Bull (red) onion seeds have also been started. I broadcast seeded two 6-cell flats of each variety and numerous seedlings in each flat have germinated. They will be transplanted outdoors at about 12 weeks (late April).

5. Since my initial planting, I have started a couple other 6-cell flats of tomatoes, peppers and a couple of eggplant. Again, these are all essentially "test subjects" for now. I'll keep them as long as I have space and proper light.

Whew, so that's about where I am right now. Most of this is just passing time until March comes around and I start taking things a bit more seriously, although this is all so much fun, I rarely take any of it too seriously. Having lots of plants and lots of variety makes the few failures seem much less "faily".

My next update will include my final plans for the spring and summer garden, as well as many more photos of what I have going on thus far. I have reduced the number of tomato and cucumber plants I will be growing, but have increased the number of peppers and squash. I would really love to have 20+ tomato plants, but I just really don't have the container space if I want to grow other things. The plus side is that I convinced my SO to let me plant edibles in our raised flower bed out front since I already planted garlic in it back in October. Nothing is set in stone yet, but I'm thinking mostly peppers, onions and nasturtiums for color (our neighbors always look forward to our annual flower display, so I don't want to totally disappoint)..

I hope everyone is planning something amazing, big or small! Spring will be here sooner than we know!
Attached Thumbnails
My 2015 Container Garden-choysherbs1-.jpg   My 2015 Container Garden-choysherbs2.jpg   My 2015 Container Garden-choyclose.jpg   My 2015 Container Garden-10-fingers-naples.jpg   My 2015 Container Garden-jalapenos.jpg  

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Old 02-06-2015, 02:28 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
69,463 posts, read 79,677,903 times
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I have started a few tomato seeds inside and hope they will do well til I can get them in cantainers in a couple of months. I think this coming Thursday hubby and I are heading for Home depot to buy some containers and maybe some soil if they have it yet? We will be on a cruise from the 4th or April til the 16th, which is normally the time we start the garden. I am thinking, depending on the weather we might get a few cantainers started before we leave. So far we have had no winter. It remains to be seen if we are going to get hit next month.
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Old 02-06-2015, 04:43 PM
 
Location: Denver/Boulder Zone 5b
1,340 posts, read 3,144,431 times
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nmnita, HD should have plenty of potting mix.. I know the ones near me do. Remember to only use potting mix in containers, never actual soil or dirt. Compost works okay, too, but normally in small amounts because it can compact badly. I will be purchasing two more bags of seed starter media and a couple smaller bags of potting mix for my larger seedlings this weekend. I just keep each type of mix in large totes in my grow area, lightly moist and ready for planting.

Sometime in March I will splurge on 15 or so of the largest bags of potting mix I can find for all of my new containers (7 Earthboxes and 8, maybe 10, whiskey barrels). Once I get them filled, I shouldn't have to buy mix for at least the next 5-8 years, other than a bag or two for topping off. I have a coworker who's been using the same potting mix in her Earthbox for 6 years and her plants just do better each year. I think the recommendation is to replace the mix every 8 years.

What zone are you in? 8/9? If so, you can likely start cool season plantings next month with little issue temperature-wise. Most lettuces, root vegetables, greens (kale, bok choy, chard, spinach, brassicas, etc.) do very well in cool weather and can normally handle temperatures to 30 or even slightly below. My lettuces handled upper 20s just fine last year and, in fact, they actually taste better if they're allowed to spend a few nights just below 32. I'm not a fan of kale, but I've been reminded that it's been known to survive into the upper teens for short periods of time..

Have a wonderful time on your cruise! Please do a thread once you get your garden going! I'd love to see it and I know you've been excited about getting it planted! At least post some pictures if nothing else..
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Old 02-06-2015, 05:39 PM
 
Location: too far from the sea
18,113 posts, read 17,243,534 times
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All it does is snow lately.

But I had two garden plants that I was determined to keep alive over the winter: the rosemary and a geranium.

We drove to Virginia and I took the plants with me in pots. Rosemary dies here in the freezing winter but it was just fine in Virginia. The geranium was blooming.

On the way back home we stopped at a motel in CT and left both plants in the car. They froze.

However, the rosemary is alive with dead branches and it COULD live until March or April when it's safe to put it on the glassed in porch. I was ready to throw the geranium away today when I noticed two tiny green leaves sprouting! Both plants are on the kitchen counter and both LIVE!
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Old 02-08-2015, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
69,463 posts, read 79,677,903 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NickMan7 View Post
nmnita, HD should have plenty of potting mix.. I know the ones near me do. Remember to only use potting mix in containers, never actual soil or dirt. Compost works okay, too, but normally in small amounts because it can compact badly. I will be purchasing two more bags of seed starter media and a couple smaller bags of potting mix for my larger seedlings this weekend. I just keep each type of mix in large totes in my grow area, lightly moist and ready for planting.

Sometime in March I will splurge on 15 or so of the largest bags of potting mix I can find for all of my new containers (7 Earthboxes and 8, maybe 10, whiskey barrels). Once I get them filled, I shouldn't have to buy mix for at least the next 5-8 years, other than a bag or two for topping off. I have a coworker who's been using the same potting mix in her Earthbox for 6 years and her plants just do better each year. I think the recommendation is to replace the mix every 8 years.

What zone are you in? 8/9? If so, you can likely start cool season plantings next month with little issue temperature-wise. Most lettuces, root vegetables, greens (kale, bok choy, chard, spinach, brassicas, etc.) do very well in cool weather and can normally handle temperatures to 30 or even slightly below. My lettuces handled upper 20s just fine last year and, in fact, they actually taste better if they're allowed to spend a few nights just below 32. I'm not a fan of kale, but I've been reminded that it's been known to survive into the upper teens for short periods of time..

Have a wonderful time on your cruise! Please do a thread once you get your garden going! I'd love to see it and I know you've been excited about getting it planted! At least post some pictures if nothing else..
ok, so let me make sure I understand you: I am using a lot of standard round planters and yes, I realize I will need to use potting soil in them. I have in the past used regular top soil, but it hasn't worked well. I get a few peppers or whatever but not enough to make it worth while. Now, my question, what about the large containers I am using? They are plastic and are similar to the storage boxes many of us store our Christmas decorations in. Do they require potting soil as well? I do know we have to drill holes in them, near the bottom, right?
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Old 02-08-2015, 01:52 PM
 
Location: South Carolina
13,173 posts, read 17,712,376 times
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I have got some dwarfs already growing in pots and I will keep them growing inside until they are gone and after they are gone I will plant some more dwarfs and then I will put a couple of big tomatoe seed in my huge pots and see how they do this year . I will be in a different zone yep moving in two week to a different zone so im excited to be in a warmer environment . Im ready for a warm environment LOL ....getting too old for this cold artic winters aka Midwest winters . Im also going to grow some cream sausage tomatoe as well .
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