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Old Yesterday, 12:16 PM
 
Location: Denver/Boulder Zone 5b
1,371 posts, read 3,342,225 times
Reputation: 1408

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Hi All!

I know I am like, I dunno, 3 months late to the party, at least, but I did finally show up! That has to count for something. For those not familiar, I grow my food garden almost exclusively in containers - a mix of Earthboxes, whiskey barrels, GreenStalk and other random containers. The only things I am growing in the ground food-wise this season are my squash/zucchini plants. I live in the Denver/Boulder area, growing zone 5b.

I tamed down the garden a bit this season just because the past few seasons overwhelmed me and made gardening more of a chore than a hobby, which has never been my intention. This year I am focusing a lot on peppers and cucumbers because they are quick to process and we like to share a lot of them. I still have a fair share of other crops to be sure, but the garden is definitely less work this season.. so far..

Our weather this season has been dominated by high pressure, so it's been extremely hot and dry with no severe weather yet (KNOCK ON WOOD!!). We've had 26 days of temperatures 90F+, including yesterday's 99F and today's projected 98F (07/08/20). All forecasts I've seen for the next 10 days call for highs between 94 and 102F in our immediate area with very few chances for rain. This is by far the hottest season I've had in gardening since I started in 2013, at least to date. With that said, I am surprised by how well the garden is flourishing.

I am growing 13 varieties of tomatoes (16 total plants), 9 varieties of peppers (27 total plants), 6 varieties of cucumbers (15 total plants), 3 varieties of beans, 3 varieties of squash/zucchini, tomatillos, kale, Swiss chard, leeks and potatoes. I also have some herbs thrown in to fill in space.

Below I have listed the varieties I am growing and, if I've grown before, the reason why. If I have not grown before, I will provide further opinions as the season progresses. All of my plants have outgrown the 5' trellises in the Earthboxes, with the exception of the San Marzanos, but they'll get there in the next 3-5 days. They always grow a bit slower and more densely.

Tomatoes:

1. 1884 - I have grown this variety several times and it always does well for me. Consistent producer of very large, slightly fluted fruit. Most are over one pound, but some are slightly smaller, especially towards the end of the season.
2. Aussie (x2) - Another variety I have grown that is always a great producer. Huge, fluted and relatively flat fruit that are almost always over 10oz. Great flavor, gorgeous red color.
3. Brandywine Liam's - New
4. Church - New
5. Delicious - New
6. Early Girl (x2) - I threw these in this year because I wanted some nice, medium-sized tomatoes for general fresh eating. Always a good producer and always produces nearly perfect 4-8oz fruit.
7. Granny Cantrell German Red - New
8. Juliet - New
9. Kellogg's Breakfast - New
10. Mammoth German Gold - New
11. Martha Washington - New
12. Opal - New
13. San Marzano (x2) - I have grown this several times, including last season. The tomatoes are very meaty and extremely rich in depth of flavor. Of course, I enjoy canning them, but these tomatoes last season were unbelievable fresh, as well. Very productive. I have found that while always productive, San Marzano plants benefit from as much sun as you can give them - at minimum 6-7 hours. Too much shade produces very mealy and unappetizing fruit, at least when eaten fresh.

Peppers:

1. Corno Di Toro (x2) - New
2. Cubanelle - New
3. Emerald Fire Jalapeño (x8) - I have grown this for several seasons now and I wish I would've planted 4 more. These are amazing, huge jalapeños that tend to be hot, productive and very reliable. I picked my first 3/4 gallon bag of jalapeños today (07/08/20)! I pickle many, many quarts and pints of these every season.
4. Flaming Jade Serrano (x4) - Amazing producer of very hot serrano peppers. I like slicing them lengthwise and pickling.
5. Hungarian Wax - Second season growing. These look just like banana peppers, but can be much hotter. I was surprised by their heat last season. I hope they're hot again this year.
6. Mucho Nacho (x4) - See notes on Emerald Fire. Smaller peppers over all, but they carry their weight in heat and production. Always a staple in my garden.
7. Lemon Spice (x2) - New
8. Orange Spice (x2) - New
9. Poblano L (x3) - I think I have grown this before, but poblano peppers in general always give me a hard time. Plants get enormously tall for pepper plants (sometimes over 4' tall) and always set fruit very late. I usually get 6-8 nicely sized peppers from each plant, but so far only flowers this season. If anyone has a recommendation for a reliably productive poblano pepper, please let me know. I have several varieties that all grow similarly and I WANT MORE PEPPERS.

Cucumbers:

1. Armenian (x2) - New
2. Beit Alpha (x3) - New
3. Calypso (x4) - Second season. Only dreaming they're as productive as last season. I was SWIMMING in these beauties.
4. Mexican Sour Gherkin (x2) - New
5. Muncher (x2) - New
6. Wautoma (x2) - Grown once before and quite productive. Wanted to use up my old seed, so that's why I planted them again.

Squash/Zucchini:

1. Cocozella di Napoli - Grew in a whiskey barrel once before and was very productive. Trying in-ground for the first time and plant looks good so far.
2. Costata Romanesco - See above.
3. Golden Zucchini - Tried years ago in a whiskey barrel and was not productive, but also didn't get much sun. Also trying in-ground this season and we will see. Probably still not getting enough sun..

In addition to the above, I am growing a few varieties of bush bean in my GreenStalk (Dragon Tongue, Velour and Yellow Wax), several varieties of kale that I neglected to label, Swiss chard (Canary and Lucullus), leeks (American Flag), tomatillos (Cisneros), and potatoes (Banana Fingerling). Kale and chard are in Earthboxes and the leeks, tomatillos and potatoes are in whiskey barrels. So far, so good. I have harvested about 25 shopping bags full of kale from about 14 plants. I think only 6 plants next season..

As strange as it may seem, I am already getting antsy with plans for next season's gardens. I hope to eat most of my tomatoes fresh or share them this season since I still have about 15 pints of crushed tomatoes from last season on the shelf. I want to make next year a very heavy tomato year.. perhaps as many as 50 plants.. to get the shelves stocked up again for the following few years.

See below for some garden shots taken as of the date of this posting, along with some shots of the front yard flowers and porch area. Mostly supertunia, wave petunia, superbena, salvia and sedum. Kept it simple and low maintenance.

I probably won't do weekly updates, but I will try to do a few more in the coming months!
Attached Thumbnails
My Container Garden 2020-img_2341.jpg   My Container Garden 2020-img_2343.jpg   My Container Garden 2020-img_2344.jpg   My Container Garden 2020-img_2346.jpg   My Container Garden 2020-img_2347.jpg  

My Container Garden 2020-img_2349.jpg   My Container Garden 2020-img_2350.jpg   My Container Garden 2020-img_2351.jpg   My Container Garden 2020-img_2352.jpg   My Container Garden 2020-img_2353.jpg  

My Container Garden 2020-img_2356.jpg  
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Old Yesterday, 12:19 PM
 
Location: South Carolina
14,515 posts, read 20,176,162 times
Reputation: 26121
Good to see you back . Im no longer growing veggies too much work and too little production in my area . So all im growing now is flowers and they are doing great . Nice to see you back .
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Old Yesterday, 01:11 PM
 
Location: Near the Coast SWCT
73,211 posts, read 56,674,324 times
Reputation: 12824
Nice! Looking forward to the updates.
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Old Yesterday, 05:24 PM
 
Location: Denver/Boulder Zone 5b
1,371 posts, read 3,342,225 times
Reputation: 1408
Quote:
Originally Posted by phonelady61 View Post
Good to see you back . Im no longer growing veggies too much work and too little production in my area . So all im growing now is flowers and they are doing great . Nice to see you back .
Thanks, phone! I completely understand. My garden almost did me in the past two seasons which is why I didn't share much. Overwhelmed myself. Gardening is NOT an easy hobby and anyone who says it is has a screw loose. I'd love to see pics of you flowers! I LOVE LOVE LOVE flowers. I hope to start some of my own from seed next season.

There is a chance we'll be putting in a deck and some more permanent gardens over the next few seasons, so there could be a lot of changes coming. For now, these containers are great.
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Old Yesterday, 05:25 PM
 
Location: Denver/Boulder Zone 5b
1,371 posts, read 3,342,225 times
Reputation: 1408
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post
Nice! Looking forward to the updates.
Thanks, Cam! It looks pretty much like it does every season! I don't move much around since I have my garden in a relatively limited space. I will be reading through your thread in the coming days. It looks like you've been VERY busy!!
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Old Yesterday, 09:53 PM
 
Location: Olympia area (for now)
2,002 posts, read 816,762 times
Reputation: 4344
Everything is looking good! Your plants are all healthy and productive and it’s amazing to see tomatoes that size this time of year. Think my tallest ones are around two to three feet.

I used a gift certificate from Amazon to buy a GreenStalk this year and the strawberries are loving it. Your GreenStalk is full of happy looking plants too. They have deep pockets and I love how easy it is to water.

Happy harvest and post more pictures anytime!
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Old Yesterday, 09:54 PM
 
Location: Olympia area (for now)
2,002 posts, read 816,762 times
Reputation: 4344
Getting some strange technical glitch, CD has website issues in the evening, but I wanted to ask you what kind of fertilizer you use for those tomatoes?
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Old Today, 04:53 AM
 
Location: Near the Coast SWCT
73,211 posts, read 56,674,324 times
Reputation: 12824
Quote:
Originally Posted by NickMan7 View Post
Thanks, Cam! It looks pretty much like it does every season! I don't move much around since I have my garden in a relatively limited space. I will be reading through your thread in the coming days. It looks like you've been VERY busy!!

BTW.. I love the screen idea. Tomatoes looking real good!


Also.. Any chance you can copy and paste the pic into the post instead of us clicking each attachment?
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Old Today, 06:58 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
76,058 posts, read 88,947,517 times
Reputation: 46873
Quote:
Originally Posted by NickMan7 View Post
Hi All!

I know I am like, I dunno, 3 months late to the party, at least, but I did finally show up! That has to count for something. For those not familiar, I grow my food garden almost exclusively in containers - a mix of Earthboxes, whiskey barrels, GreenStalk and other random containers. The only things I am growing in the ground food-wise this season are my squash/zucchini plants. I live in the Denver/Boulder area, growing zone 5b.

I tamed down the garden a bit this season just because the past few seasons overwhelmed me and made gardening more of a chore than a hobby, which has never been my intention. This year I am focusing a lot on peppers and cucumbers because they are quick to process and we like to share a lot of them. I still have a fair share of other crops to be sure, but the garden is definitely less work this season.. so far..

Our weather this season has been dominated by high pressure, so it's been extremely hot and dry with no severe weather yet (KNOCK ON WOOD!!). We've had 26 days of temperatures 90F+, including yesterday's 99F and today's projected 98F (07/08/20). All forecasts I've seen for the next 10 days call for highs between 94 and 102F in our immediate area with very few chances for rain. This is by far the hottest season I've had in gardening since I started in 2013, at least to date. With that said, I am surprised by how well the garden is flourishing.

I am growing 13 varieties of tomatoes (16 total plants), 9 varieties of peppers (27 total plants), 6 varieties of cucumbers (15 total plants), 3 varieties of beans, 3 varieties of squash/zucchini, tomatillos, kale, Swiss chard, leeks and potatoes. I also have some herbs thrown in to fill in space.

Below I have listed the varieties I am growing and, if I've grown before, the reason why. If I have not grown before, I will provide further opinions as the season progresses. All of my plants have outgrown the 5' trellises in the Earthboxes, with the exception of the San Marzanos, but they'll get there in the next 3-5 days. They always grow a bit slower and more densely.

Tomatoes:

1. 1884 - I have grown this variety several times and it always does well for me. Consistent producer of very large, slightly fluted fruit. Most are over one pound, but some are slightly smaller, especially towards the end of the season.
2. Aussie (x2) - Another variety I have grown that is always a great producer. Huge, fluted and relatively flat fruit that are almost always over 10oz. Great flavor, gorgeous red color.
3. Brandywine Liam's - New
4. Church - New
5. Delicious - New
6. Early Girl (x2) - I threw these in this year because I wanted some nice, medium-sized tomatoes for general fresh eating. Always a good producer and always produces nearly perfect 4-8oz fruit.
7. Granny Cantrell German Red - New
8. Juliet - New
9. Kellogg's Breakfast - New
10. Mammoth German Gold - New
11. Martha Washington - New
12. Opal - New
13. San Marzano (x2) - I have grown this several times, including last season. The tomatoes are very meaty and extremely rich in depth of flavor. Of course, I enjoy canning them, but these tomatoes last season were unbelievable fresh, as well. Very productive. I have found that while always productive, San Marzano plants benefit from as much sun as you can give them - at minimum 6-7 hours. Too much shade produces very mealy and unappetizing fruit, at least when eaten fresh.

Peppers:

1. Corno Di Toro (x2) - New
2. Cubanelle - New
3. Emerald Fire Jalapeño (x8) - I have grown this for several seasons now and I wish I would've planted 4 more. These are amazing, huge jalapeños that tend to be hot, productive and very reliable. I picked my first 3/4 gallon bag of jalapeños today (07/08/20)! I pickle many, many quarts and pints of these every season.
4. Flaming Jade Serrano (x4) - Amazing producer of very hot serrano peppers. I like slicing them lengthwise and pickling.
5. Hungarian Wax - Second season growing. These look just like banana peppers, but can be much hotter. I was surprised by their heat last season. I hope they're hot again this year.
6. Mucho Nacho (x4) - See notes on Emerald Fire. Smaller peppers over all, but they carry their weight in heat and production. Always a staple in my garden.
7. Lemon Spice (x2) - New
8. Orange Spice (x2) - New
9. Poblano L (x3) - I think I have grown this before, but poblano peppers in general always give me a hard time. Plants get enormously tall for pepper plants (sometimes over 4' tall) and always set fruit very late. I usually get 6-8 nicely sized peppers from each plant, but so far only flowers this season. If anyone has a recommendation for a reliably productive poblano pepper, please let me know. I have several varieties that all grow similarly and I WANT MORE PEPPERS.

Cucumbers:

1. Armenian (x2) - New
2. Beit Alpha (x3) - New
3. Calypso (x4) - Second season. Only dreaming they're as productive as last season. I was SWIMMING in these beauties.
4. Mexican Sour Gherkin (x2) - New
5. Muncher (x2) - New
6. Wautoma (x2) - Grown once before and quite productive. Wanted to use up my old seed, so that's why I planted them again.

Squash/Zucchini:

1. Cocozella di Napoli - Grew in a whiskey barrel once before and was very productive. Trying in-ground for the first time and plant looks good so far.
2. Costata Romanesco - See above.
3. Golden Zucchini - Tried years ago in a whiskey barrel and was not productive, but also didn't get much sun. Also trying in-ground this season and we will see. Probably still not getting enough sun..

In addition to the above, I am growing a few varieties of bush bean in my GreenStalk (Dragon Tongue, Velour and Yellow Wax), several varieties of kale that I neglected to label, Swiss chard (Canary and Lucullus), leeks (American Flag), tomatillos (Cisneros), and potatoes (Banana Fingerling). Kale and chard are in Earthboxes and the leeks, tomatillos and potatoes are in whiskey barrels. So far, so good. I have harvested about 25 shopping bags full of kale from about 14 plants. I think only 6 plants next season..

As strange as it may seem, I am already getting antsy with plans for next season's gardens. I hope to eat most of my tomatoes fresh or share them this season since I still have about 15 pints of crushed tomatoes from last season on the shelf. I want to make next year a very heavy tomato year.. perhaps as many as 50 plants.. to get the shelves stocked up again for the following few years.

See below for some garden shots taken as of the date of this posting, along with some shots of the front yard flowers and porch area. Mostly supertunia, wave petunia, superbena, salvia and sedum. Kept it simple and low maintenance.

I probably won't do weekly updates, but I will try to do a few more in the coming months!
As usual Nick, everything looks healthy and beautiful.
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Old Today, 07:13 AM
 
3,385 posts, read 2,311,596 times
Reputation: 6953
Wow, Nickman, always amazing!

We had trouble getting any plants until very late and like you, lat year we started to feel overwhelmed. Finally we got a shiishiitoh pepper (baby peppers on it!), a Brandywine, a Celebrity, and Cherokee purple by way of tomatoes.

Marzano sounds good but we don't get near enough sun.

Thanks for the update!
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