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Old 05-21-2009, 08:37 PM
 
9,558 posts, read 26,420,027 times
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So my square foot garden is not doing so great. I planted some cucumber, squash and tomato seedlings a few weeks ago and they don't seem to be growing muhc at all. Now the leaves are starting to turn yelow. I have some lettuce and green beans that are doing ok. I also have some pepper plants that look healthy, but they too don't seem to be growing much. I don't know what is going on. Any ideas? Is it possible the inexpensive compost I got at Loews doesn't have enough nutrients in it? Help!

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Old 05-22-2009, 06:20 AM
 
Location: South Walton Florida
187 posts, read 860,347 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Raleigh_Guy View Post
So my square foot garden is not doing so great. I planted some cucumber, squash and tomato seedlings a few weeks ago and they don't seem to be growing muhc at all. Now the leaves are starting to turn yelow. I have some lettuce and green beans that are doing ok. I also have some pepper plants that look healthy, but they too don't seem to be growing much. I don't know what is going on. Any ideas? Is it possible the inexpensive compost I got at Loews doesn't have enough nutrients in it? Help!
I fight turf in my garden everyday. The grass here has runners that are reaching for my gardening water and enriched soil. Yesterday a runner made it to my vegetable roots before I caught it. I got it out but, I have nowhere near the amount of turf around my garden that you have. Maybe.....
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Old 05-22-2009, 07:43 AM
 
Location: new england
202 posts, read 948,074 times
Reputation: 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Raleigh_Guy View Post
So my square foot garden is not doing so great. I planted some cucumber, squash and tomato seedlings a few weeks ago and they don't seem to be growing muhc at all. Now the leaves are starting to turn yelow. I have some lettuce and green beans that are doing ok. I also have some pepper plants that look healthy, but they too don't seem to be growing much. I don't know what is going on. Any ideas? Is it possible the inexpensive compost I got at Loews doesn't have enough nutrients in it? Help!
Did you add any lime to your mix? I'm using cow compost from Lowe's and so far no ill effects.
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Old 05-22-2009, 06:59 PM
 
4,010 posts, read 8,708,534 times
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Without seeing it up close, I would say that it looks too dry. Has it been getting enough water? If this is the problem then adding some mulch will do wonders.
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Old 05-23-2009, 05:46 AM
 
Location: Nebraska
4,179 posts, read 9,118,711 times
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Yellow stunted growth usually means that the plants are getting too much water, without enough soil and nutrients underneath them to have a good mix of everything that they need. In effect the water is the only thing being taken up into the plant.

A short-term correction is to spray them with Miracle Gro or Algoflash or another water-soluble fertilizer; but the root problem is really your roots. They are not happy in the soil they are in. There is (by the looks of it) not enough good fertile soil for them to plant their feet and stretch down into. As the above poster said, the grass runners could be starving your babies underneath your box, making the soil too tight and crowded for them to reach deeply or spread adequately. How deeply did you spade or clean out the soil underneath, and how severely did you cut off the grass runners around the box? You may need to examine both the edges of the box and the soil at the base of your plants. These guys at this point do not look as if they will produce, and may die altogether if you don't give them some root room.

Dig deeply and mulch well...
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Old 05-23-2009, 07:27 AM
 
Location: a nation with hope
13,155 posts, read 16,879,497 times
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I have a lot of really good soil in my garden, plus Black Kow mixed in, and still some of the plants show tinges of yellow. I think I read somewhere that yellow in the leaves is a sign of nitrogen shortage. Is that so? Or, could it be something else?

I know overwatering can be a problem too, especially for tomato plants. They don't like watering in the evening, either. It promotes fungus diseases, as evening watering doesn't allow the plants to dry off before nightfall (same as with roses).

We fed with Miracle Gro about a week ago. Maybe it takes a bit longer for that to kick in?
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Old 05-23-2009, 09:06 PM
 
Location: Nebraska
4,179 posts, read 9,118,711 times
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Not being there to test your soil, you could be lacking in three things - 1) nitrogen (the "N" in N-P-K fertilizers), iron, or acidity. Vegetables like lower Ph or slightly acidic soil. If you want to add iron, be sure to add a nitrogen-rich fertilizer first, at least a week or so before, or the iron can't be taken up into the plant. Sulfur also helps acidify the soil. On any of these, too much is as bad as not enough, though, which is why those who plant very large beds usually go with 10-10-10 fertilizer. There may even be something in the wood frame that is leaching into the soil, or the soil you are using could have had other wastes put into it from all sorts of things - graywater drainage from a washer that utilized a lot of bleach, oil drain from cars, even natural deterioration of products.

Remember that just because a soil is black and crumbly doesn't mean that it has all of the nutrients a plant requires, especially one that you want to produce foodstuffs. And I love manure, but Black Cow is processed manure and has not done as well for me as real, fresh manure worked into a compost, then plowed into the soil. Also, no matter how much 'punch' your manure has, it is a natural fertilizer, which means that it will release nutrients slllloooowwwwlllyyy. Manure like compost is best used to amend soil over time - it should be plowed under in fall and left in the soil overwinter for best results. No manure is a 'quick fix".

Miracle Gro usually reacts with my plants in less than a week, so by your description it is something else. Miracle Gro feeds the plant, not the soil, so it acts quickly.

I don't usually post in raised-bed or square-foot gardening forums, because I prefer to continuously amend the soil over a large area, I don't like the leaching or potential water-retention capabilities of water in a small squared-off area, and I like to have elbow room to weed, etc! Crowding plants in my personal experience makes for a rapid degeneration of nutrients in a small area of soil, especially one that is raised, and means twice the work for rebuilding that soil afterwards. That is a personal observation only, and not a cut-down of those who prefer it, or who must use it because of space restraints. I simply don't care for them.
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Old 05-24-2009, 10:30 AM
 
Location: The Raider Nation._ Our band kicks brass
1,854 posts, read 8,525,489 times
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That whole container is about what you need for one squash plant. They also like a different kind of soil than the tomatoes. The picture looks like the soil is dry, and has a lack of nitrogen just like everybody else said.

The tomatoes need the Mir-Acid type of Miracle-Gro. The cucubirts are not acid loving. They should have been farther apart.

Try this to to see if they revive. Mix a water soluable fertilizer with a spoonful of liquid dish soap in a big bucket of water. See if that helps them turn green again.

This page might help you too...... Identifying Plant Nutrient Deficiencies

I was looking at your picture again. Unless it is an optical illusion, It looks like you used 2x4's for the frame. They are only 3 1/2" wide, and are not filled to the top. Did you do anything to the grass and soil underneath?
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Old 05-24-2009, 11:07 AM
 
Location: The Raider Nation._ Our band kicks brass
1,854 posts, read 8,525,489 times
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This also gives an idea of which plants don't like to be near each other. Organic Gardening | The Green Garden (http://garden.bemiso.com/category/organic - broken link)
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Old 05-26-2009, 05:05 AM
 
Location: Albemarle, NC
7,730 posts, read 12,449,963 times
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Mix one tablespoon of epson salts into a gallon of water. They'll green up in no time. Lack of Magnesium or nitrogen is a good explanation for what's wrong. If you built the bed over grass, lack of nitrogen shouldn't be a problem since the grass is a nitrogen source.

With all the rain we've been having, I seriously doubt it's too dry for them. Now, it may be too wet.
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