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Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  AtlantaMarie on 5/21/2014, 7:54 am

Lookin' good, JM!

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 6/7/2014, 11:44 am

Got another ~2 lb of lettuce with a little spinach.  Get about this much every week--plenty for us and sharing with family.  The spinach is done now and will be followed by bush green beans--Blue Lake 274 and Dragon Tongue.  It was the worst year for spinach we've had--through the first week of May is was too cool, then the last half of May had plenty of 80s which the spinach didn't like.  We've always grown the variety Space and this year also tried Regal along side it.  The Regal bolted already and we could have gotten another small cutting from the Space--but just pull them to get the beans in.  But it has been a great spring for lettuce and radishes.


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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  Marc Iverson on 6/8/2014, 1:57 am

Cool ... almost impossible to get enough spinach or lettuce, IMO. Even if I grew huge amounts, I'd still know neighbors who'd love some.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  TxGramma on 6/8/2014, 7:33 pm

jmsieglaff, Just curious...how much lettuce did you plant and what kinds? Trying to figure out how much to plant for my family. I know harvest will vary for each garden and conditions, but was thinking it would give me a gauge to start with.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 6/8/2014, 11:01 pm

Right now I've got 2 squares with 4 plants each of Flashy Butter Oak and Green Oakleaf.  In another garden, that is just short of 2 feet wide I have 6 plants each of Red Romaine, Buttercrunch, Green Oakleaf, and Bronze Beauty.  So that's a total of 32 lettuce plants -- plus our 4 yr old son has about 10 lettuce plants in a container on the deck, but he likes to munch on that when we're outside, so call it effectively 36 lettuce plants.  I grow all lettuce as cut and come again--even the ones that are heading types, like Red Romaine and Buttercrunch.

I've struggled in the past with summer time lettuce (July and August), but I just sowed more lettuce seed and will be securing burlap a foot or so above those squares for partial shade as I know the lettuce plants we have now will be reaching their end in the next few weeks (increasing heat and age).  So I'm hoping I'll do better this year with mid/late summer lettuce.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  TxGramma on 6/8/2014, 11:25 pm

Thanks that helps a lot. I didn't want to start off way over or under; not that it really matters that much, I could always plant more or give some away. But this way I have a better idea of how many to start out with. I was planning on doing mine as cut and come again too. And in our Texas heat I will definitely have to do some shading as well to keep a summer crop going. I'm actually thinking of placing one of my new beds in a partial shade location and using it for a salad bed.

Thanks again for all the info!

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 6/19/2014, 7:15 pm

TXGramma, how are your lettuce plans going?

The garden is growing like gang busters here.  Today was garlic scape harvest!  The garlic is doing great this year.  I've also rigged up my burlap for lettuce shade, the seeds below have sprouted and are growing well.





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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  AtlantaMarie on 6/22/2014, 9:20 am

Looks great, JM!

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 7/3/2014, 9:29 am

Who doesn't like pictures, I know I do, so I thought I'd post some more of how the garden is doing here in early July.  Temperatures have been near normal and we've been very wet--so the garden and mosquitoes are growing prolifically.

Looking south at the main garden beds:


Main north garden bed:  Peppers close, Tatume squash along trellis, then broccoli and onions, far under the burlap are carrots and summer lettuce (Lemon squash along trellis).

And the view from the opposite side:


The south main bed:  Cucuumbers along the trellis, lots of tomatoes, bush zuke, and green beans, Lemon/Tatume seeds just went in along the trellis as the sugar snap peas finished up.


And the opposite view:


Deck bed with garlic, tomatillos and sweet potato vines getting going in the middle:


Some container tomatoes and my winter experiment pepper:


This Sungold gave us our first tomatoes yesterday:


And a cluster of cherry types on a plant from a seed our son spit out and asked to plant in early April.  It will be interesting to see how similar/different these fruits end up to ones from the store.  The plant is prolific and setting tons of fruit!


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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  Marc Iverson on 7/4/2014, 2:29 am

Wow, you've got a lot of stuff! Looks healthy too.

How many tomatoes and peppers do you have planted?

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  sanderson on 7/4/2014, 2:47 am

JM, Everything looks so healthy!  okay 

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 7/4/2014, 7:59 am

Thanks!  I've got 12 peppers in my main garden, 2 Serrano, 2 King of the North, and 8 Yummy.  I've also have my winter experiment pepper and a Fish pepper in pots on the deck and sunk in my 6 extra Yummy pepper plants in the asparagus bed.  Tomatoes went crazy this year, we have 13 plants--up from 5 last year, partly to due to small garden expansion, but I also added 4 new tomato containers where I'm growing the dwarf tomatoes.  There are just too many varieties to try!  All is healthy so far.  Noticed the Black and Brown Boar had a some leaves with spots, so I pruned it fairly aggressively.  I'll take tomatoes in my lunch everyday and have them with dinner.  Our son is a tomato eating machine and we'll see how our 1 1/2 year old likes tomatoes (she hasn't cared for the store bought ones thus far and DW was going to try them again and I quickly took them off her plate because I want to try again with garden fresh ones.)  Even then I'm guessing my neighbors will benefit from all the tomato plants.  I'll probably hit my tomatoes with Neem Oil as well as squash as preventative for foliage fungal issues--which given the wet year could become an issue.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  AtlantaMarie on 7/5/2014, 6:59 am

Everything looks great!

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2014 Garlic Harvest

Post  jmsieglaff on 7/6/2014, 12:08 pm

Ideally I thought the garlic could go another week, but with rounds of thunderstorms expected again this evening and again tomorrow night, I decided to harvest the garlic today.  I figured I'll take slightly smaller bulbs over the risk of a couple inches of rain on top of already wet soil and possibly rotting the bulbs (we had close to 9.00" of rain in June).  The harvest looks good 28 hardneck and 8 softneck bulbs.  Not the largest bulbs I've grown, but plenty to use and replant in the fall.





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Mid July update

Post  jmsieglaff on 7/16/2014, 10:36 pm

I wanted to share some pictures of how the garden was doing in mid July.  The summer here has been near normal in the temperature department and quite wet.

North bed:  Peppers, squash, summer broccoli, onions, lettuce and carrots.  More lettuce/spinach to go in where spring broccoli was pulled and where onions will soon be pulled.



South bed:  Green beans, bush zucchini, a couple onions, a tiny Okra plant,  lots of tomatoes and cucumbers.  We've harvested Sungolds so far, but 3 other varieties are starting to show color!





Test garden (we riped out some bushes and need to do a border):  Experiment tomato, some flowers, Blacktail Mountain Watermelon and mini pumpkins (just off the picture):





The garden from one of the bedrooms in our house.  I just liked the way it looked from afar.



Not pictured are the tomatillos and sweet potoatoes by the deck which are doing well.  And the tomatoes/peppers/lettuce in containers on the deck are also doing well.

Hope everyone is having a fun time in their gardens.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  sanderson on 7/17/2014, 1:37 am

Really nice!  Very Happy 

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  Marc Iverson on 7/17/2014, 9:25 pm

Looks great. What is summer broccoli? I've never grown broccoli, but have it fixed in my mind as a spring and fall or overwintering crop.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 7/18/2014, 1:11 pm

I grew Apollo and Asparabroc (both spring/early summer sprouting broccoli varieties) which produced nicely from late May - early July.  I'm also trying a new summer sprouting broccoli this year:  https://jungseed.com/dp.asp?pID=01438&c=88&p=Summer+Purple+Sprouting+Broccoli

I'll see how that goes.  The plants are doing well, but no broccoli sprouts yet.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  Marc Iverson on 7/18/2014, 5:16 pm

Well that's very cool indeed. I'm not used to hearing that term at all, even from companies that sell purple sprouting. I'll be very interested to hear how it goes for you, if you'll keep us up on it, along with what temperatures they were able to withstand before bolting.

Apollo looked very interesting, and I was thinking I might try it sometime soon. Territorial says you cut off the main head when it's not too big, and then the sprouts just keep coming.

How hot was it before your Apollo bolted? I'm assuming the reason your production stopped is because it bolted ...?

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 7/18/2014, 5:51 pm

I've grown Apollo for a few years and this was the first year with Asparabroc.  They grew, matured, tasted the same.  I couldn't tell them apart.  I pull them because they stopped producing side shoots--that's typically what happens to my sprouting broccoli by early July, sometimes a bit earlier in a hot year.  If I left them in they would still produce just at a much slower rate and I pull them to free up space for fall lettuce, spinach and radishes.  Those really didn't bolt, as long as I stay on top of picking them the small flower heads don't open.  We strip any big leaves off and roast them like asparagus or eat them fresh--the side shoot stems are my favorite part, crisp, sweet, and tender.  With the summer sprouting stuff I'm hoping to get a similar product but more in later summer and through fall, we'll see how it goes.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  Marc Iverson on 7/18/2014, 7:42 pm

Thanks for the response, and please do keep us apprised. Broccoli is one of my favorite veggies, and I'd love to be able to grow some in our weather, which is either hot in the first place (90 to 100+ degrees in summer, often for a month or more at a time) or has weird bursts of heat when you don't expect it (95 degrees two months before our last frost date).

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 7/19/2014, 4:20 pm

@Marc Iverson wrote:Yeah, yield per square foot might well be higher.  I hope you bring up your spacing and results again later on once you've harvested the onions and seen how your experiment turned out.

Well my experiment is done.  My results are surprising, but ultimately the experiment I don't think is valid and I need to redo it again next year.

So I grew Copra onions from seed and did 3 squares @ 9/sq and 3 squares with alternating 5-4-5.  I also did one square @ 9/sq with sets purchased at a store.

3 squares @ 9/sq yielded 27 onions.
3 squares @ 5-4-5 yielded 14 onions.
1 square of sets @ 9/sq yielded 8 onions.

The 9/sq squares were at the edge of the bed.  The 5-4-5 squares were one set of squares in from the 9/sq and had broccoli next to them.  Ultimately the spacing did not have the impact I was expecting, but the onions neighboring the broccoli in the 5-4-5 arrangement did terrible whether due to competition for nutrients and/or shading from the broccoli once they became large.

Average weight 9/sq:  70.8 g (2.5 oz) Total weight 9/sq: 1911 g (4.2 lbs)
Average weight 5-4-5:  33.5 g (1.16 oz) Total weight 5-4-5:  469 g (1.01 lbs)
Average weight sets @ 9/sq:  66.6 g (2.35 oz) Total weight sets:  533g (1.17 lbs)

As you can see in the pictures below there was a decent variance in the 9/sq some much larger than golf ball, probably baseball sized and some smaller (standard deviation was 33.6 g).  The 5-4-5 arrangement had a small standard deviation of 18.6 g--but they were all small due to likely competition and shade from the broccoli.

Conclusions:  The experiment needs to be redone without one group of onions getting dominated by the broccoli.  One conclusion that is valid no matter what the 9/sq spacing produced a decent crop of onions 4.2 lbs in 3 sq ft.  I don't mind some smaller onions, especially when you only want a little bit for something like some sauteed or grilled zucchini or green beans, etc.  You can see the layout below (the squares labeled broccoli had broccoli and were pulled in early July).



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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  Marc Iverson on 7/19/2014, 4:44 pm

Cool. You did get some reasonable volume even with the crowding.

Is there any way you recommend cooking smallish onions? They are such a pain to peel I'm thinking about baking some that I have whole in their skins.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 7/19/2014, 5:48 pm

We use most of our onions in soups salsas or for sautéing or grilling veggies so the small ones might be just enough for prepping a side dish of vegetables.  The bigger ones will work for soups and salsas.

Not sure I'll repeat the experiment might just go 9/sq next year but figure out something else to put by the broccoli like radishes.  Those would be done before the broccoli gets too big.

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

Post  jmsieglaff on 8/1/2014, 10:45 pm

We're getting a nice harvest of bush beans now.  This year I'm growing Blue Lake 274 again and are trying Dragon Tongue.  The Dragon Tongue are beautiful and are very tasty--sweeter and juicer than the Blue Lake 274 and just as crisp.



And below is a side dish for dinner the other day:

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Re: Construction Block and Cattle Panel SFG

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