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Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

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Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  Gardenerd on 7/31/2013, 12:33 pm

*originally posted this in the wrong place, my apologies Embarassed *

Here is a draft of our plans for a Fall garden. Each square in the white beds represents one sq. ft. Some squares are merged to accommodate larger plants. The main beds are 3'x8' - any square that doesn't have a number means only one plant in it (except for the bok choy, haven't read the package, yet).

We are building an archway over the sidewalk for the beans, peas and butternut squash to scramble over. We are using a trellis called the "florida weave" aka "cat's cradle" for the tomatoes - we are firm believers in pruning suckers from tomatoes since we grow mostly indeterminate heirlooms, which are gnarly.

I do plan to put more herbs and flowers than are currently on this chart, just depends on what sprouts and makes it to that stage Wink 

I did my best to plant according to companions but don't truly believe it matters THAT much but, please, if you see something blaring - let me know What a Face 

I appreciate all comments and suggestions - even if it means a total rearrangement!
I'd rather do it in excel than in the garden!  thanks

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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  littlejo on 7/31/2013, 5:47 pm

I don't know your area or the direction of sun/shade. You will have to judge that. The corn will shade whatever it is near, try to think of your planting as if the plants are full grown.
I would put onions, carrots, garlic, parsnips, radishes, beets, in the center of bed. They pretty much take care of themselves, and you just pick when they are done.
I'd put the limas on the outside, for once they start coming off, you will have to be hunting the plant over to pick.
Don't put onions next to beans, for the beans will pick up the onion flavor.

I do not know what Tula, Atkinson or Costoluto is?

Sounds like a good fall garden for Fla.
Jo
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  Gardenerd on 7/31/2013, 6:11 pm

@littlejo wrote:I don't know your area or the direction of sun/shade. You will have to judge that. The corn will shade whatever it is near, try to think of your planting as if the plants are full grown.
I would put onions, carrots, garlic, parsnips, radishes, beets, in the center of bed. They pretty much take care of themselves, and you just pick when they are done.
I'd put the limas on the outside, for once they start coming off, you will have to be hunting the plant over to pick.
Don't put onions next to beans, for the beans will pick up the onion flavor.

I do not know what Tula, Atkinson or Costoluto is?

Sounds like a good fall garden for Fla.
Jo
Black from Tula, Atkinson, and Costoluto Genovese are the tomato varieties - my apologies! forgot to change that! Smile
The area on the graph where the fence is faces West so all of the tall plants are on the North side of the garden to prevent them from shading everything else out. For Example - the beans, peas, and butternut squash row is on the "north" side of the garden and everything goes southward from there, right to left. Does that make sense? Or, am I rambling, lol...
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  WriterCPA on 8/8/2013, 4:02 pm

Check the threads under "companion" to refine your layout.   I did a cheat sheet at
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t15694-need-help-with-layout?highlight=companion
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  sanderson on 8/9/2013, 12:46 am

Hi Gardenerd,  It looks like you have done a lot of thinking and planning before you plant.  The spreadsheet is a little small for me, but with a magnifying glass on the enlarged photo, I think I see a couple of questions.  I'm a Newbie and there are a lot of much more experienced SFG gardeners on this Forum who can help you.

1.  I think I understand where the trellis will be.  Are you open to adding a classic Mel's trellis or something similar?   It would be about 4 1/2 ' tall if you have 6" beds.  Summer squash, cantaloupes, and I think winter squash, can be grown 1 per square if they are trained vertically.  I'm growing summer squash and cantaloupe vertically, one per square.

2.  The corn is only 3/square instead of 4/square.  Is that your preference?  It is located as a 3 foot row in the middle, which will shade the sun-loving pepper and part of the tomatoes.  Or does the sun cross East to West straight overhead?  If so, then it doesn't matter.

3.  The cool crops are mostly grouped together which is good if you have the white butterflies that produce the notorious green worms. They love brassicas such as cabbage, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and leafy plants such as bok choy, Chinese cabbage, kale, collards. I know there are others but can't think of them at the moment. You should be able to build a tulle-covered cage over them for.protection.

4.  I didn't pay attention to companion plants.  I would have to look at a chart to discuss the subject! Embarassed

Okay, that's all I can comment on.  Good job.  Don't forget to take photos so you can share your progress.  Best of luck.
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  littlejo on 8/9/2013, 7:32 am

Sanderson and all, press down the 'control' key and go up or down with mouse and the text/pic should enlarge.
Jo
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  Gardenerd on 8/13/2013, 10:08 am

@WriterCPA wrote:Check the threads under "companion" to refine your layout.   I did a cheat sheet at
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t15694-need-help-with-layout?highlight=companion
 Thank you for this reference! I also have the book 'Carrots love Tomatoes' and used this website: http://www.mysquarefootgarden.net/companion_planting_color.pdf as a guide.
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  Gardenerd on 8/13/2013, 10:26 am

@sanderson wrote:Hi Gardenerd,  It looks like you have done a lot of thinking and planning before you plant.  The spreadsheet is a little small for me, but with a magnifying glass on the enlarged photo, I think I see a couple of questions.  I'm a Newbie and there are a lot of much more experienced SFG gardeners on this Forum who can help you.

1.  I think I understand where the trellis will be.  Are you open to adding a classic Mel's trellis or something similar?   It would be about 4 1/2 ' tall if you have 6" beds.  Summer squash, cantaloupes, and I think winter squash, can be grown 1 per square if they are trained vertically.  I'm growing summer squash and cantaloupe vertically, one per square.

2.  The corn is only 3/square instead of 4/square.  Is that your preference?  It is located as a 3 foot row in the middle, which will shade the sun-loving pepper and part of the tomatoes.  Or does the sun cross East to West straight overhead?  If so, then it doesn't matter.

3.  The cool crops are mostly grouped together which is good if you have the white butterflies that produce the notorious green worms. They love brassicas such as cabbage, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and leafy plants such as bok choy, Chinese cabbage, kale, collards. I know there are others but can't think of them at the moment. You should be able to build a tulle-covered cage over them for.protection.

4.  I didn't pay attention to companion plants.  I would have to look at a chart to discuss the subject! Embarassed

Okay, that's all I can comment on.  Good job.  Don't forget to take photos so you can share your progress.  Best of luck.
I appreciate your lengthy reply to this! Newbies or Veterans, I think we all have something to contribute thanks 


1. The only issue with the Mel's classic trellis is the height. Last summer, our 'Homestead' tomatoes grew to over 10 feet tall - we were tying branches with sisal down to the cages they had completely overtaken. We have a bamboo 'fence' separating the neighbor's backyard from ours and some of those stalks are 15' high - give or take. I do plan to grow the winter squash vertically but read that it may need two squares regardless. If it turns out that it only needs one square, bonus! I'll plant something else in the empty space Smile

2. I was advised elsewhere (reddit) that the corn really needs to be 3/square. I thought about doing something succession-like and starting with 3 and seeing where it goes from there. I have come to find out that with gardening, sometimes it's a 'wait and see' kind of deal. Yes, the sun crosses East to West over the garden. The row closest to the fence will get sun first and for the longest. My husband plans to experiment with 'hoop houses' to protect from frost (if that comes this year, it's usually Jan before we get a frost) and some pests.

3. We had an ENORMOUS issue with worms last year, across town at our old place. I haven't seen the first worm here this summer; totally weird and I have no explanation for that. I have seen lots of butterflies, though. I use neem oil to control pests on the vegetable plants only. I also do the old 'just pick them off as I see them' maneuver. We have some parasitic wasps that have taken care of the aphids on my Okra this year, which is neat - Ive never seen anything quite like what they do.

4. I got a little insane with the companion planting when this first started. It got to a point where I was asking myself 'since when did planning a garden become so difficult?!' Read the thread on this site regarding companion planting to put your mind at ease if it starts to become a bear Very Happy

Thanks so much, again, I sincerely appreciate the thought you put into replying to this. I spent yesterday afternoon shoveling compost into the beds. I will be marking the squares today and will post pictures of them when complete!
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  boffer on 8/13/2013, 2:26 pm

@littlejo wrote:Sanderson and all, press down the 'control' key and go up or down with mouse and the text/pic should enlarge.
Jo
I'm thinking littlejo meant to say mouse wheel.  And if you don't have a mouse wheel, hold down the control key and use the + and - keys on the numeric keypad.  And if you're using a hand held device...that's beyond my pay grade!
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  littlejo on 8/13/2013, 2:53 pm

@boffer wrote:
@littlejo wrote:Sanderson and all, press down the 'control' key and go up or down with mouse and the text/pic should enlarge.
Jo
I'm thinking littlejo meant to say mouse wheel.  And if you don't have a mouse wheel, hold down the control key and use the + and - keys on the numeric keypad.  And if you're using a hand held device...that's beyond my pay grade!
Boffer, I just have 1 of those built in square mouse on my lap top, so I just use the side of the mouse that makes the cursor go up or down.

On another note, as far as something climbing the corn, it's a pain when the corn is done and picked, but the beans are just beginning to bear. What to do? I put bamboo stakes in the bed, and cut out the corn stalks, could not dig, for the beans and squash was there.
Jo
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  Gardenerd on 8/13/2013, 4:30 pm



Here is the most recently updated plot. I moved the beans to accommodate a suggestion by littlejo.
As for corn and tomatoes 'not getting along' (due to worms) - can they just not be inthe same bed, period - or does one just need to be vigilant?
Since the beds are now filled, I intend to spend the weekend sowing seeds and transplanting Very Happy
The red line going through the Tomatoes represents the Florida weave trellis I will be implementing. That can be found HERE (link)

What to plant and when was a huge topic of strife for me when this all began. I found a wonderful article that Mother Earth news put out HERE (link) and it has proven true for me, year after year.

*edit* here is my flickr photostream: http://www.flickr.com/photos/a_gardenerd/
this picture can be enlarged much better there
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

Post  yolos on 8/13/2013, 7:26 pm

@littlejo wrote:Sanderson and all, press down the 'control' key and go up or down with mouse and the text/pic should enlarge.
Jo
 Thanks for that lesson littlejo.  Now I can read the smaller print on the layout.
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Re: Draft of our Fall 2013 SFG beds - comments/suggestions welcome, please! :)

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