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Any Southern NV SFG out there?

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Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  Dreaming of Green on Thu Jan 17, 2013 2:12 pm

Hi!

I'm new here, just joined the other day and have read all through the Southwestern Desert threads. I see lots of AZ and NM gardeners, but no one in the NV area it seems.

I admit, this climate is challenging to say the very least. I have tried several gardening methods here and have learned all sorts of ways not to do it. I will be giving the New SFG a go this year and would love to know how anyone in this area (Southern NV, zone 8a) has done. I have made a few connections from my thread on the welcome board, thanks again everyone.

I am sorry to say that my many "failures" over the last few years have discouraged me to no end. I had beautiful gardens and wonderful harvests from my MI gardens, ground and planters alike. So I would love a little inspiration and to hear of some success stories Laughing

Have a wonderful day


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Las Vegas Gardener - new to SFG

Post  MuzzyLove on Tue Jan 22, 2013 9:18 pm

Just starting to plan my first vegetable garden and am impressed by the SFG method. I need to get busy. Willing to hear from Las Vegas locals - any SFG trials or tribulations with our unique climate?
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  sfg4uKim on Tue Jan 22, 2013 9:27 pm

Hi Dreaming of Green

I'm sorry I can't help even though I lived much of my childhood in LV, Henderson & finally BC.

Kim

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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  gwennifer on Tue Jan 22, 2013 9:34 pm

My mother has two 4'x4' SFG beds in Las Vegas. I know she's peeked at the forum a few times, but since there was never any activity in her area I guess she didn't see the point of joining. Last year was her first year vegetable gardening there, and also first year of the SFG method. I'll see if I can talk her into saying hello and sharing her experiences.
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  Goosegirl on Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:07 am

welcome Dreaming! My FIL gardens in the Carson City area. He doesn't do the SFG thing but is very familiar with the issues of gardening in a barren, infertile desert! SFG will save you from most of those issues. Are you doing table top boxes or boxes on the ground?

GG
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  Goosegirl on Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:57 am

welcome MuzzyLove! Missed that it was your first post above! SFG is addictive, and helps bypass many of the issues faced by gardeners in less-than-ideal growing conditions!

GG
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  donnainzone5 on Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:41 am

Two or three years ago, someone in the LV area posted marvellous pictures of a 12"- deep SFG on this website. So, it CAN be done!
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  Lindacol on Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:52 am

welcome both you new Las Vegas area gardeners.

Here is a thread you will find interesting. This member hasn't been active on the forum in more than a year but as you can see there is lots of info, pictures and even a video.

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t2676-just-finished-building-my-four-4-x8-x20-raised-beds
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  Dreaming of Green on Thu Jan 24, 2013 10:13 am

Hi again everyone!

Here is a thread you will find interesting. This member hasn't been active on the forum in more than a year but as you can see there is lots of info, pictures and even a video.

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t2676-just-finished-building-my-four-4-x8-x20-raised-beds
Thank you for the link, I will check it out

Two or three years ago, someone in the LV area posted marvellous pictures of a 12"- deep SFG on this website. So, it CAN be done!
It's good to know that it can be done, I am trying to get my plans in order, build my boxes, shade and compost bin etc. Hopefully I will be ready for a late spring/early summer planting. No cool weather crops until fall Sad

My mother has two 4'x4' SFG beds in Las Vegas. I know she's peeked at the forum a few times, but since there was never any activity in her area I guess she didn't see the point of joining. Last year was her first year vegetable gardening there, and also first year of the SFG method. I'll see if I can talk her into saying hello and sharing her experiences.
I would love to be able to connect to another LV SFG, hopefully your mom will give the forum another try Wink

Thanks again everyone, have a great day!
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The New SFG book

Post  MuzzyLove on Thu Jan 24, 2013 7:39 pm

Well, I'm working my way through the book, making notes, and am anxious to start. I have my husband to put together the grow box and also a "back-up" in case he's too busy. I saw an ad on craigslist for 4 bags of Mel's Mix. Sure hope they're still available.
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Vegas Baby!

Post  brainchasm on Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:12 pm

New user, new garden, new gardener here.

I had bought some cinder blocks to make raised beds, but thankfully didn't fill them before I got Mel's book (2nd Ed.).
So much of what I thought I knew, I was going to do wrong...
I had five beds laid out, 40" x 40", and they are already 16" deep, was thinking I had to go to 24"...all of it wrong!

I am tearing it all down this week/weekend, and doing just two beds, a proper 48" x 48", 16" deep which I will do 4" in of sand in the bottom. Without any arid environment guidance per se, I feel we in the desert need to have a bit more depth to try and moderate temps and water loss...if anyone knows for sure whether I'm right or wrong about this, please let me know.

I have seedlings I just started - Straight Eight cucumbers, Black Krim tomatoes, Cherokee Purple tomatoes, and Crenshaw melons. I also have Thomas Laxton peas, Touchon carrots, some rainbow chard, and some Serrano pepper seeds all waiting to be direct-sown. The cucumbers germinated in less than 20hrs...they're pretty eager!

If anyone has any interesting heirloom starters, I'd be very interested in connecting in a couple/few weeks to trade for my extras...

Hopefully I'll keep coming to this forum (I can't imagine why I wouldn't!), and will have some pics to post as things move along. Smile
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  RoOsTeR on Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:47 pm

Welcome Brainchasm.
6 inches is all you need If you have deep pockets, you can make your beds deeper, but for me, I would rather build and fill more boxes Smile

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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  brainchasm on Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:59 pm

@RoOsTeR wrote:Welcome Brainchasm.
6 inches is all you need If you have deep pockets, you can make your beds deeper, but for me, I would rather build and fill more boxes Smile
I understand, and believe me, I want to believe that in my heart of hearts, but our heat is so oppressive!

The cinder block is already going to heat up and hold onto that heat longer than I want; thinking about painting/whitewashing them. North and East facings are 5'6" stuccoed cinder block walls that reflect heat like crazy, and my beds are sitting on a graveled area that...you guessed it...gets crazy hot! I just can't see 6" of loose, airy, friable soil holding moisture for any decent length of time in those conditions.

Alternately, I can just fib to myself and say I want to do root veggies...
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  Lindacol on Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:45 pm

This is an old thread but has lots of info on an awesome Las Vegas garden.

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t2676-just-finished-building-my-four-4-x8-x20-raised-beds


Last edited by Lindacol on Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:57 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : spelling)
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Las Vegas Gardener

Post  valorie on Sat Mar 02, 2013 6:01 pm

[quote="Dreaming of Green"]Hi!

I'm new here, just joined the other day and have read all through the Southwestern Desert threads. I see lots of AZ and NM gardeners, but no one in the NV area it seems.

I admit, this climate is challenging to say the very least. I have tried several gardening methods here and have learned all sorts of ways not to do it. I will be giving the New SFG a go this year and would love to know how anyone in this area (Southern NV, zone 8a) has done. I have made a few connections from my thread on the welcome board, thanks again everyone.

I am sorry to say that my many "failures" over the last few years have discouraged me to no end. I had beautiful gardens and wonderful harvests from my MI gardens, ground and planters alike. So I would love a little inspiration and to hear of some success stories Laughing

Have a wonderful day


[not sure how to post a reply but here goes, I have 2 garden beds, just top dressed them with fresh compost, watered them in. One bed is mostly for annual veggies, I have the seeds sprouting in the house now. That bed has strawberry plants too. The other bed is mostly perennial, I have an artichoke and rhubarb, both looking good, the rest of the bed is asparagus, one of those is poking through too. Valorie]
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  brainchasm on Sat Mar 09, 2013 1:21 am

[quote="valorie"]
@Dreaming of Green wrote:Hi!

I'm new here, just joined the other day and have read all through the Southwestern Desert threads. I see lots of AZ and NM gardeners, but no one in the NV area it seems.

I admit, this climate is challenging to say the very least. I have tried several gardening methods here and have learned all sorts of ways not to do it. I will be giving the New SFG a go this year and would love to know how anyone in this area (Southern NV, zone 8a) has done. I have made a few connections from my thread on the welcome board, thanks again everyone.

I am sorry to say that my many "failures" over the last few years have discouraged me to no end. I had beautiful gardens and wonderful harvests from my MI gardens, ground and planters alike. So I would love a little inspiration and to hear of some success stories Laughing

Have a wonderful day


[not sure how to post a reply but here goes, I have 2 garden beds, just top dressed them with fresh compost, watered them in. One bed is mostly for annual veggies, I have the seeds sprouting in the house now. That bed has strawberry plants too. The other bed is mostly perennial, I have an artichoke and rhubarb, both looking good, the rest of the bed is asparagus, one of those is poking through too. Valorie]
Very exciting to hear someone has artichoke and asparagus here in the Las Vegas heat! I have high hopes for you!

(Since you're here in LV, would you want any black krim or cherokee purple tomato seedlings? or straight eight cucumber seedlings? I...I think I started too much...)
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  Muckmuck on Sat Mar 09, 2013 10:17 am

Hello all, I'm a lifer here in Vegas and have had good results with SFG practices. In my opinion raised beds are affected to much by our high temperatures. My first beds 15 years ago were less than 4" above ground but extended into the ground. The beds I am putting in now are 6" but have chipped/shredded tree trimming mulch surrounding them on all sides clear to the top of the bed. This mulch shades the bed sides and effectively turns a raised bed into a sunken bed which is what the UNCE master gardeners recommend in our climate.
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seedlings

Post  valorie on Sat Mar 09, 2013 11:28 am

thanks but i think i have enough for my beds right now. I'm trying green grape tomatoes recommended by the tomato lady.
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Another newbie to SFG in Vegas

Post  Gritman on Mon Apr 08, 2013 10:40 pm

Hey all, glad to find this forum and some folks just starting SFG in my area like me. I had heard of SFG some time ago and was interested in it because it makes so much sense. Plus, I've long wanted to learn how to grow my own "real" food and be more self-sufficient.

But it wasn't until I was introduced to and visited Vegas Roots Community Garden (non-profit & public) by a friend of mine who volunteers there, that I was really interested in trying my hand at it. Not long after my first visit to the garden, I became their volunteer webmaster. I tell you this because I was so inspired by the place (and in the interest of full disclosure, because let's face it, I'm biased Smile ).

They grow all kinds of stuff there - all year long! And it's grown in a combination of both raised-bed and standard row configurations. So, if anyone living in the area needs some validation and inspiration that it CAN be done in a big way in Vegas, I suggest you pay Vegas Roots a visit.

Being so inspired, I just built and filled two SFG planters for my back yard last week. One is 2 x 2 and the other 3 x 3. 13 square feet seemed like a good start. I've direct-sown herbs in the 2 x 2 and two of the spots in the 3 x 3. The other seven spots will be filled with two tomatoes, two tomatillos and two peppers, as well as one onion variety (seeds currently germinating). Salsa stuff, essentially. And every one a non-GMO, heirloom seed.

Getting the soil together was the biggest hassle for me. I hit every garden center's website before I went out to grab the ingredients. But it still took me visiting three Home Depots, one Lowes, one Star Nursery and a Walmart to piece together the ingredients. And despite that, I only ended up with four kinds of compost. Oh, and I ordered the vermiculite over the web and ended-up paying $15 more than I should have for it, because Star Nursery (2 blocks from my house) carried it, but didn't have it listed on their site (hint).

Another issue that kinda gripes me about this process was the lumber. It's been a long while since I built anything out of wood and I seem to have forgotten that actual lumber sizes are far from the size we call them by. So, when you buy 2 x 8's like I did, you quickly find out that they are actually more like 1 1/2 x 7 1/4. My lesson learned: take a tape measure with you.

And also, it seems that Mel overlooked something quite important in his book (I've got the newest version). If you assemble any square foot box, you must take into account the interior dimensions of the box if you want to have actual and equal square foot spots in the planter. And, of course, the width of the lath used to made the grid should also be taken into consideration.

My failure to consider these things resulted in each of my "square feet" being more like 10 1/2 square inches. Not that I won't still have some great plants and harvests, but things might get a little crowded at times. And since I'm a perfectionist, I'm kinda bummed that my SFG doesn't technically live up to its name. Sad

I'm going to be manually watering my SFG, and since Mel says you can't over-water his soil, I'll probably be watering twice a day during the warmer months. The Vegas Roots garden has an automatic irrigation system that waters for 5 minutes twice a day during the hot months, so I'll follow their lead. And their soil isn't quite up to Mel's Mix standards, yet they still have such great production. So, I'm very confident that my little starter SFG will perform well, too! Wink

I'll keep you posted on my progress and looking forward to comparing notes with you other Vegas locals! All for now,

Russ

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SFG in Southern Nevada

Post  American Dream Ranch on Wed Mar 05, 2014 9:51 pm

Hi!  My husband and I are just starting our gardening adventures this season in Southern Nevada.  So far everything is going great and we are so excited to SFG.  A friend of ours was an avid SFG user in Southern Utah and we were hooked after reading the latest book.  We plan on using shade covers, Agrabon, and hand watering this spring season.
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  sanderson on Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:12 pm

American Dream,  Welcome to the Forum!   glad you\'re here 

SFG seems to be very successful in hot, arid areas.  You have an advantage over other Newbies of SFG, in that you had a friend who showed you that it really works!   Very Happy
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  brainchasm on Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:19 am

@American Dream Ranch wrote:Hi!  My husband and I are just starting our gardening adventures this season in Southern Nevada.  So far everything is going great and we are so excited to SFG.  A friend of ours was an avid SFG user in Southern Utah and we were hooked after reading the latest book.  We plan on using shade covers, Agrabon, and hand watering this spring season.
Welcome ADR!  I'm in the city itself, and this is my second year of gardening, and second year of SFG. Smile

If you haven't gotten started just yet, I would move very quickly if you want anything for this spring or summer...I just planted out my tomatoes and peppers two days ago!

I had amazing luck with melons last year - they were my zucchini (in that I had so much I had to start giving it away).
Drip irrigation is made for our environment...I'll recommend dripworks.com.

If you have any LV valley specific questions, let me know.  I'm still learning as I go, but I'll tell you anything. Smile

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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  sanderson on Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:51 am

@brainchasm wrote:
@American Dream Ranch wrote:Hi! 
Drip irrigation is made for our environment...I'll recommend dripworks.com.

)
Dripworks.com  -  I love their 6" drip lines.  Driplines and mulch are great for hot summer gardening.
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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

Post  brainchasm on Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:52 am

@sanderson wrote:
@brainchasm wrote:
@American Dream Ranch wrote:Hi! 
Drip irrigation is made for our environment...I'll recommend dripworks.com.

)
Dripworks.com  -  I love their 6" drip lines.  Driplines and mulch are great for hot summer gardening.
6" is definitely the winner.  I'd even go 4" if they had it.  12" spacing is just toooo sparse for our environment. Very Happy

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Re: Any Southern NV SFG out there?

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