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One yield only plants?

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One yield only plants?

Post  Velvet Elvis on 4/22/2012, 5:31 pm

I'm entering year 2 in SFG and gardening in general, so I know next to nothing...

Are there any plants that only produce one harvest? For instance, broccoli is a large plant that requires one entire square foot. Does a broccoli plant only produce one fruit? We have a short growing season in MN, and I'm trying to avoid wasting time on plants that have the lowest yields - trying to determine what those are.

By comparison, Swiss Chard takes up a lot of space, but it keeps growing and producing. Using the SFG method, it seems logical to want to plant crops that give you the most bang for the buck.

Part of my query is based on the idea of rotating crops as I believe is part of Mel's system?? (it's been a year since I read the book). It seems to me in my short growing season area, that we don't have the luxury of rotating crops, so I'm looking for high output, continual growth plants to fill my 2 SFG's.

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Re: One yield only plants?

Post  Goosegirl on 4/22/2012, 10:19 pm

@Velvet Elvis wrote:I'm entering year 2 in SFG and gardening in general, so I know next to nothing...

Are there any plants that only produce one harvest? For instance, broccoli is a large plant that requires one entire square foot. Does a broccoli plant only produce one fruit? We have a short growing season in MN, and I'm trying to avoid wasting time on plants that have the lowest yields - trying to determine what those are.

By comparison, Swiss Chard takes up a lot of space, but it keeps growing and producing. Using the SFG method, it seems logical to want to plant crops that give you the most bang for the buck.

Part of my query is based on the idea of rotating crops as I believe is part of Mel's system?? (it's been a year since I read the book). It seems to me in my short growing season area, that we don't have the luxury of rotating crops, so I'm looking for high output, continual growth plants to fill my 2 SFG's.

Some varieties of broccoli produce only one good head and then they are basically done. Other varieties produce a main head and then continue to produce smaller side-shoots after you cut the main head so that you can continue to harvest for some time. My experience with broccoli so far is that we (I am in NE SD) seem to have too short a spring to get broccoli in as a spring crop. I am testing out that theory this year and waiting to plant my broccoli until mid-late summer and giving it its best growth time in the fall. I LOVE fresh broccoli from the garden. It is sooooooo sweet!

GG
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Re: One yield only plants?

Post  cheyannarach on 4/22/2012, 11:15 pm

You could get some lettuce, spinach, and radishes in the spring them replace them with a tomato or pepper (well any summer crop) that you started indoors once it get to warm for the cool weather crops and warm enough for the summer crop.

Do you start seeds indoors, because that is a huge time saver when you are waiting for your veggies to grow in a short growing season.
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Re: One yield only plants?

Post  Daniel9999 on 4/23/2012, 1:13 am

Sorrel and Rhubarb can be grown as perennial vegetables in your area (Minnesota).

http://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/horticulture/m1260.html

Your specific climate zone often determines exactly what kind of vegetables you can grow as perennials.

You might be able to get away with growing Egyptian Walking Onions and Jerusalem Artichokes in your zone as perennials too.
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Re: One yield only plants?

Post  Goosegirl on 4/23/2012, 7:03 am

@Daniel9999 wrote:You might be able to get away with growing Egyptian Walking Onions and Jerusalem Artichokes in your zone as perennials too.

You will DEFINITELY be able to grow Egyptian Walking Onions in MN. Give them a bed where nothing else will grow and watch them take over! I love mine! But, because they grow so easily and do take over, I do not waste box space or MM on them.

GG
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Re: One yield only plants?

Post  Unmutual on 4/23/2012, 10:15 am

I have a 'spent' broccoli plant(De Ciccio) that decided to put down roots on the backside of the compost bins(I missed the throw). It has a small head right now and we've had 80 degree weather. It really is all in the cultivar you choose.

Have you thought about looking at season extenders like a pvc pipe hoop house?

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Re: One yield only plants?

Post  quiltbea on 4/23/2012, 1:08 pm

In your area you should be able to get 2 crops of cool-weather crops in. Here in Maine we get early Broccoli (the nibs that grow after cutting the head are small and delicious and keep coming for awhile), cauliflower, cabbage but we can also sow the same types of seed in the summer and get a fall crop. Just stick the seeds in a square where you've harvested your early lettuce, spinach, peas, beans and you'll have a fall crop to enjoy. In most northern areas they are easy to grow because the deadly insects have passed and you don't have that problem with the fall season approaching.

When your early brassicas (brocc, cauli, etc) are done, pull them and add more compost and grow a later crop of bush beans, kale, Swiss chard. The space isn't wasted. Read more about companion planting and you'll find you have many choices to extend your harvest.



These are broccoli nibs growing after the main head was harvested. Just snip them off small and green and they are tender and delicious.
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Re: One yield only plants?

Post  Velvet Elvis on 4/23/2012, 6:36 pm

Thanks for all the tips. I have a staggering amount to learn, and with a 2 year old and a 1 year old.... very, very little time to learn it all

Over this past weekend, I did start some seeds indoors. I'm going to try broccoli again just to see if I can grow it

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