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Wyoming stock tank gardener

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Wyoming stock tank gardener

Post  sindhee on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 2:01 am

Hi gardeners. I grow most of my vegetables in stock tanks. It's my third year gardening this way and I am very happy with the results. The only problem is that I can't raise enough food for the year--most of what I raise gets eaten soon after it's picked. Fortunately I have enough space to add a couple of tanks each year so my hope for big cabbages and a strawberry tank may soon be realized. Meanwhile, do any of you garden this way, and if you do, what kind of success do you have? How much are you able to raise? Do you have any advice for getting more produce from your tanks? Thanks for any suggestions!
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Re: Wyoming stock tank gardener

Post  Kelejan on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 2:07 am

Sindhee

My number one question is: What is a Stock Tank? they sound interesting. I know I could Google it, but it is much more fun asking you directly.
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A stock tank is...

Post  sindhee on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 2:24 am

...a most wonderous container. They make great water gardens, bathtubs and vegetable gardens. They are a galnavized steel waterer for livestock, and you find them at feed and stockperson's supply stores. They come in many sizes, round and oval, and are at the perfect height for gardening.
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"Galvanized"

Post  sindhee on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 2:25 am

not "galnavized." Geez...
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Re: Wyoming stock tank gardener

Post  Goosegirl on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 9:37 am

I have seen pictures of stock tanks planted with flowers or veggies. They are perfect containers for raised bed gardening! Do you drill holes in the bottom for drainage or has that not been an issue for you? Would love to see pics of what you have.

And by the way, !

GG
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Re: Wyoming stock tank gardener

Post  cheyannarach on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 9:57 am

I would love to see pics too, I never thought about this but what a great idea!!!
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Thanks for the welcomes,

Post  sindhee on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 5:00 pm

Kelejan, GooseGirl and Cheyannarach! I love your forum.

Since the tanks already have draincocks, you just unscrew the caps and let the water drain out of those. I have read that some people drilled drain holes but I would think these would get clogged pretty quickly with growing algae and other debris, and if you you somehow find that you need to sell out the homestead including the tanks, they are worth more if they don't have a bunch of little holes in them! Smile The tanks would drain more thoroughly if they were elevated very slightly on the side away from the drains, but the draincocks are positioned about 2 inches above the bottoms of the tanks so there will always be a little water in them anyway. You just want to be sure to remember to remove the caps, or your tank will fill and the seedlings rot. tongue If, however, you find the plants in a tank wilting, you can screw the cap in partially to allow less drainage.

Here's the way I have set them up. Any ideas for improvements are welcome! Stock tanks are usually 2 feet deep so I fill them to 8 inches with used packing peanuts to keep the tanks on the lighter side. The peanuts get covered with steel window screening to keep the planting mix from sifting through the screen. Then the tanks are topped up with planting mix with a good couple of cups of composted chicken manure, wood ashes and Plantone plus some mycorrhyzae worked in. All of that gets watered in, and then if there's time, I allow that to mellow for a couple of weeks before deploying some earthworms; then I seed or plant the tank. The soil settles over the winter of course, but I sheet compost in the tanks until late April and then bury the compost with new planting mix. Usually by planting time the compost has decayed, although this spring squash seedlings erupted by the hundreds in the present potato tank, from about 8 inches down! I let them come up and grow to about 6 inches tall before plucking them up and laying them on the surface, where they disappeared in a week.

Goosegirl, that potato-garlic-onion-chard soup sounds so good. I plant lots of chard so I need great recipes.
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I will post some images

Post  sindhee on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 5:15 pm

as soon as I figure out how! I can't figure out how to upload an avatar image, let alone post pics. Can someone more technologically inclined help this poster child for the American Society for Luddhism?
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Re: Wyoming stock tank gardener

Post  Turan on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 5:46 pm

glad you\'re here

How To Post a Picture Located on Your Computer ~~< click linky

I am looking forward to your pics! I have seen stock tanks used for sidewalk type gardens, even fruit trees.

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Re: Wyoming stock tank gardener

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 9:38 pm

Hmmmm. Thinking. Looks like, with the drain valve at 2", the stock tanks might be useful for self-watering boxes. Put in a 4" fill pipe from top of tank, down into "packing peanuts," layer screen over peanuts, place planting medium. Water well, letting excess drain out of valve, then plant. By keeping the valve closed, you have a water reservoir for the plants to use, which you can open should there be excess rain, etc. After all the deer/elk fence and new ingredients for even more Mel's Mix, would PapaVino jump for some stock tanks? Guess it's time to make strawberry-rhubarb pies, beef roast with home-grown potatoes and creamed peas, crisp salad greens and rainbow radishes--butter the ol' boy up, right?

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Re: Wyoming stock tank gardener

Post  landarch on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 10:01 pm

stock tanks are for watering livestock, swimming, water gardening, or keeping brews and watermelons cold.







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Re: Wyoming stock tank gardener

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on Sat 23 Jun 2012, 10:04 pm

landarch. But, but what do you do with that great stock tank your great grandaddy dug? filled from the windmill installed at its edge? That's what's for swimming....and gigging frogs.

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