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Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

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Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  Lisa Wilson on 3/18/2012, 7:29 pm

I am giving my first attempt at square foot gardening. I have one 4X4 bed with Mel's mix and one 4X4 bed Lasagna style. I'm giving them both a try. I am quite nervous about purchasing seeds and plants. Was going to do it today, but decided to do more research and found this web site. I am told it is time here to plant S.P.L.0.R.P.S. or spinach, peas, lettuce, onions, radishes, potatoes, strawberries and more.... Not sure what the more is yet. I'll take any advice I can get from fellow gardeners. Smile
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HEY Neighbor!!!

Post  curio on 3/18/2012, 7:44 pm

Welcome to the forum!!! Our mailing address is in Lacey, although we're outside incorporated limits.
Right now, onions and garlic can go out without protection. We've got all the cole crops (brocolli, cabbage etc) out under cloches (hoop houses) as well as lettuce. We've also planted two kinds of peas under those cloches, as well as carrots. I'm holding off for a bit on the potatoes, as the weather has been SO iffy. If you're not using cloches, be prepared to cover at night. With potatoes, if the new growth is damaged by cold or frost, the harvest will be significantly reduced. We'll probably go with potatoes in a couple of weeks for the early ones, and a couple of weeks after that for the mid and late season ones.
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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  boffer on 3/18/2012, 7:46 pm

Howdy neighbor! I'm in Yelm, just up the road a piece. And another member, curio, is in the Nisqually Valley.

There's nothing easier than SFG. It's almost time to plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and brussel sprouts if they strike your fancy. There's a wholesale greenhouse called Jasons, just outside of Yelm, they also sell retail. Currently, they have 4-6 inch starts for those veggies, 4 for $1.39.

You can cram a lot into a 4x4 by planting lettuces, spinach, and rads in the same squares as your broccoli,etc.

Let's us know how it goes.

Oh, I have a standing offer to beginners to help them get started: enough free 5 way compost for their first box...the offer still stands if you want to make a second box this year.

C'mon sunshine!
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Boffer and Curio

Post  Lisa Wilson on 3/18/2012, 7:53 pm

Thanks for the warm welcome and advice! I noticed no one has their real name on here can I change mine to a user name? I probably have to delete and make a new account, huh? Not sure how to do that. Feelin' like a dork here. geek
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Lisa Wilson

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re: hi gardeners

Post  minervalong on 3/18/2012, 7:58 pm

Lisa. This is a great site for help, advice and a few chuckles. Have you read the All New Square Foot Garden book yet? it is great! Good luck!



And boffer, i so wish i didnt live thousands of miles away from you, i've heard tales of that wondermus compost!
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name change

Post  curio on 3/18/2012, 8:02 pm

I don't think you need to worry about having your name as your "nick" here. We're all relatively harmless.
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curio

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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  Lisa Wilson on 3/18/2012, 8:30 pm

minervalong~ Thank you for the well wishes. I recently read Square Foot Gardening, although I am not sure if it was the latest. I also read Lasagna Style Gardening, and carrots Love Tomatoes. They were library books, so I don't have them at home. Lots of information to try to absorb. Soil nutrients, what plants are good or bad together, how many can be sown together, when to plant......It is exciting, though. And finding this message board with supportive folks like yourself, Boffer, and Curio I won't find it as intimidating. Thanks!
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Lisa Wilson

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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  boffer on 3/18/2012, 8:32 pm

minervalong wrote:...And boffer, i so wish i didnt live thousands of miles away from you, i've heard tales of that wondermus compost!

"If it fits, it ships"? Nah, probably still not worth it! Razz

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re: hi gardeners

Post  minervalong on 3/18/2012, 8:46 pm

see what i mean about the chuckles? boffer, you are my composting hero, it might have something to do with all the neat toys you have for it.
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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  dsfin on 3/18/2012, 8:51 pm

Welcome, Lisa!!!

I'm further north, in the Tacoma/Auburn/Puyallup area.

Boffer's idea of taking advantage of buying some of your veggie starts from a local greenhouse or nursery when you're first starting out and unsure when and what to plant. They generally have the right types of starts ready when it's time to plant them. It also makes for another source of info in addition to what's here on the forum.

@Boffer, I've been to Gordon's in Yelm. Used to deliver plants there, many many years ago. Have not been to Jason's Greenhouse before though. Are they selling starts (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage & brussel sprouts) in 4" and 6" pots size? 4 for $1.39 is a really good price!!!

Lisa, don't forget to check out the Pacific Northwest sub-forum here too!!!

---Dave

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Jason's

Post  curio on 3/18/2012, 9:39 pm

Jason's just recently opened to the public, as it had been strictly wholesale.
My guess is those starts are in four packs. I saw lettuce there in four packs that were that price. However, the plants were really nice sized.
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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  FamilyGardening on 3/18/2012, 10:08 pm

hi Lisa and welcome to the group!

this is a great forum Very Happy

as others have mention there is a sub forum for PNW and also sub forum for non square foot gardening.....im also growing SFG box's and raised beds Very Happy and im curious about the Lasagna Style gardening....i have been reading a lot on garden forest growing and prem-a-culture (sp?)growing.....

i think the bark and garden store on the west side of oly gets all their starts from Jason's Greenhouse .....the starts look really nice....my pepper plant i got from them last year did very well!!......if we take a trip out to yelm we may have to stop by and check out boffers compost Laughing

hugs

rose
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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  Wisp on 3/19/2012, 2:49 am

Hi Lisa, I'm another Pacific Northwester, and this is also my very first year trying a square foot garden. Actually, it's my very first year gardening of any sort. Right now my biggest questions involve when exactly I'm supposed to be planting anything. I found a pretty big variance in frost dates from website to site.

boffer wrote:
There's nothing easier than SFG. It's almost time to plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and brussel sprouts if they strike your fancy. There's a wholesale greenhouse called Jasons, just outside of Yelm, they also sell retail. Currently, they have 4-6 inch starts for those veggies, 4 for $1.39.

You can cram a lot into a 4x4 by planting lettuces, spinach, and rads in the same squares as your broccoli,etc.


Hi boffer, when do you think we should be planting broccoli and lettuce and spinach and peas? Also, I didn't know I could plant around my broccoli - can I plant 8 lettuce or spinach plants circling each one? Are there any other plants I can plant around like that?
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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  FamilyGardening on 3/19/2012, 3:05 am

hi wisp

if you go here http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t10562-march-2012-in-the-pacific-northwest furb started a thread on March in the PNW.....there is a great chart posted that will give you an idea of what and when to plant for the month of march.....if you look thru that thread you might find some more info on what others are planting this month too Very Happy here in the PNW area

hugs

rose
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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  Lavender Debs on 3/19/2012, 8:23 am

Lisa Wilson wrote:...snip I am told it is time here to plant S.P.L.0.R.P.S. or spinach, peas, lettuce, onions, radishes, potatoes, strawberries and more.... Not sure what the more is yet. I'll take any advice I can get from fellow gardeners. Smile

Kale? Broccoli? Cauliflower?

Hello Lisa! Springing with joy, Welcome to the board.

Debs ....wondering if you got your SPLORPS planted (cute!)
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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  gwennifer on 3/19/2012, 1:46 pm

Hello Lisa from Lacey! SPLORPS is fun to say! There are a few other folks on here that use their real name, but you could maybe beg the administator to change yours if you prefer a fun nickname... uh, maybe!

Most important thing to do with your garden is to Just Do It! Experience is the best teacher. You can read and get advice to get off to get a good start, but don't get hung up on planting the perfect garden because so many things are trial and error and weather and pests can throw a monkey wrench into the whole thing anyway. Buy transplants to begin with to get off to a faster start, and have fun!

I know you said you got the books from the library, but if you can get ahold of the ANSFG book again, you'll see it's meant to be used as a reference book that you'll use again and again once you get the hang of things. Mel has all kinds of charts in the back that you use to figure out how much to plant, and what to plant when. The only information you need to supply is your first and last frost dates, which is information easily gained on the internet or by contacting your local extension agency!

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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  boffer on 3/19/2012, 9:00 pm

@minervalong
My wife says the only reason I garden is to have an excuse to play in the dirt! Fortunately, she agrees that having the right tools for the job is important...and we have overflowing kitchen cabinets to prove it! Razz

@Mike
Gordens was bought out a few years ago, and the new owner let go of half of their outdoor sales space in order to make ends meet. It's my understanding that they're squeaking by.

Jasons, on the other hand, expanded last year. They're a stones throw from Four Corners. I think it was just three years ago that they opened a small retail outlet that is open about six months of the year. I've seen their plants at McLendons, where they are 15-20 cents more.

I was referring to height when I mentioned 4-6 inches; four packs. I had to buy a few just because they are farther along than my starts. I wasn't going to plant cabbage this year, but the starts were too healthy looking to pass up. We all know how that goes! Embarassed

@Rose
C'mon on by...nobody ever leaves empty handed!

@Wisp
I've had lettuce, spinach, and peas planted unprotected for several weeks. I've planted cauliflower and cabbage under a hoop house for rain protection, but the ends are open so they're not protected from low temps. Last year I planted broccoli this early and got small heads, even though the cauliflower right beside them got beautiful heads. So I'm going to wait another few weeks before planting broccoli to see if it makes a difference.

A lot of us over-plant leaf lettuces and spinach. They are considered cut and come again, so if they start getting too big for the space, we just cut some leaves off to make space and have a salad for dinner. 8 plants around a broccoli plant would be fine. You could do the same with most plants that are planted one to a square.

Frost dates are more critical for warm season plants like tomatoes, peppers, and corn.
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Re: Hi Gardeners! From Lacey, WA

Post  dsfin on 3/20/2012, 12:28 am

Hey Boffer,

That's too bad about Gordon's Nursery. I remember when I first met Mr. Gordon. Early in the season he would drive to the greenhouses in Fife and personally select some of our product to sell. As the season would progress I would haul truck loads of plants to him. At that time he was aggressively expanding his nursery portion of the business there.

It's unfortunate that so many of the small local nurseries (like Gordon's) have or are threatened to go by the wayside. There used to be so many of them. The trend has definitely been caused by the turn in the economy and housing market. And the Big Box stores have moved in to fill the need of gardeners. Unfortunately they operate more on "price", rather than "service" which the small nurseries have been known for to provide.

That's good news to hear that Jason's has been expanding. Many of the growers have been struggling as well. I like the idea where a wholesale grower can open up access for the retail customer. We/I did it too, when I worked at Gardenville Greenhouses at Fife (like some 30 years ago). There is something special for the avid gardener to be able to walk into a greenhouse where the plants they're about to buy are actually grown. It's the kind of experience that the Big Box stores just can't provide. I started and managed the retail outlet at Gardenville for two years before moving on. I didn't know about the SFG method then, but it makes me wonder now how or if it might be a good fit for a business like Jason's to promote SFG (in an educational way) to their customers. Have you ever known if that has been done before with SFG?

My last thoughts for this evening before signing off ......... there sure has been a surge in new PNW forum members lately. Hope that trend continues!!!

---Dave

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