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PNW: September 2013

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  sanderson on 9/15/2013, 2:15 am

Thanks for replying, Boffer. I was going to try the layered method where you keep adding mix as they grow. ??

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  boffer on 9/15/2013, 2:26 am

Sanderson, be sure to plant an indeterminate variety. If you plant a determinate, you'll only get potatoes on the bottom. Indeterminate varieties include "Russet Nugget," "Nicola," "German Butterball" and "Elba" potatoes.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Goosegirl on 9/15/2013, 8:14 am

@boffer wrote:
@FamilyGardening wrote:Boffer which farmers market did you send things to?....
... I layed down plastic, cut an 'X' to plant the potato.  Done.  I got a few green potatoes, but not a big deal.  Easy peasy potatoes!
So the mice didn't get the potatoes like they got your corn with this method?!

Sorry - couldn't resist!

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  boffer on 9/15/2013, 11:14 am

I guess I lucked out: my mice aren't potato heads!  

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  sanderson on 9/15/2013, 4:35 pm

Boffer - Thank you for that important info!!

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/20/2013, 5:53 pm

Bunch of my tomatoes started to ripen. It was great to see so many red ones! Watered Monday, it rained a bit Tuesday, and it's supposed to rain today, so I won't water even my seedlings. The (established) lettuce seems to be loving this cool weather. Spinach had a sudden growth spurt too, but they're still small. A number haven't germinated at all.

Ahh ... there's the rain ... just the tiniest sprinkle yet ... love it when nature does my work for me!

Found a seed packet of borage at the local grange. Happy to have this seed -- it's supposedly such a great companion plant for most everything; the leaves, stems, and flowers are edible and not yucky tasting; and its flowers are pretty and attract bees.

One of my neighbors went away for the month and said I could have whatever I wanted in his garden while he was away. He left a bunch of ripe yellow and red peppers, so I stripped 'em and have been eating them the last several days. Smile I only planted a few pepper plants, and my own weren't super-productive.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  gwennifer on 9/22/2013, 5:42 pm

cloudy-bummer   cloudy-bummer   cloudy-bummer 
 
@Marc Iverson wrote: ... love it when nature does my work for me!
 ME TOO!

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  FamilyGardening on 9/23/2013, 12:44 am

I wanted a bit of rain too.....eek!.....now It can stop.....the wind today blew so hard our sunflowers didn't know if they were coming or going.....Razz .....their poor heads were whipping back and forth.....I believe they are suffering from whip lash

BOFFER love that over head view of your raised beds!! WOWZEr! your fall garden......looks great! Very Happy 

happy gardening
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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/23/2013, 1:01 am

I thought the cool weather and the rain would start to give me problems, but boy, it's making everything green and so happy looking. Tomatoes are tasting the best they have all season, and what with my constant pruning diseased or spent-looking leaves and branches, they look as healthy as they have ever been, too.

Finally getting a couple of squash, too. Dunno that there will be time for the butternut to ripen, but the pattypans are small anyway, so there's a chance there for my lone new yellow one.

Have over a dozen spinach planted, 9 lettuces, 8 kales, seven brussels sprouts, and a lot of daikon radishes. Just pulled up some tomato and cucumber plants today to make way for kale and garlic, which I think are a more productive use of the soil right now.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  FamilyGardening on 9/23/2013, 1:06 am

very cool mark!!.....sometimes that's all our plants need is some good old water from the sky cheers sounds like your garden is still going from summer

 and look out for fall.....Very Happy .....I love our fall garden so far.....our kale is loving the rain too.....I think it grew from leaving the house this morning until we came home tonight.....LOL....for real though cyclops 

happy gardening
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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/23/2013, 3:02 am

I hope my kale grows as well as it sounds like yours is growing. I got dwarf kale. I think I'm going to get row covers for my fall crops. It doesn't get super-cold here, but I wouldn't mind the extra productivity, and I really like the idea of interfering with bugs laying eggs around my crops and/or munching them. My neighbor just planted brussels sprouts, the only cabbage crops we've planted all year, and already has picked a bunch of worms off them. Ugh.

Especially considering how long brussels sprouts take to grow, I really want to keep them!

The daikon growing around the brussels sprouts have started putting up nice little leaves. I love pickled daikon; gotta find a recipe, and hope it doesn't call for ingredients that are too exotic.

My horse poop/compost pile continues to grow. I hope it overwinters into something mellow enough to use next spring. Something must be happening anyway, because I keep piling on more, but it keeps sinking lower.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  sanderson on 9/23/2013, 2:25 pm

Marc,  I'm caught in between tomatoes and peppers still producing and wanting to rip them out and plant fall/winter crops.  I swear that on Sept 22, fall arrived overnight.  I have a short BS that survived a green worm attack with help from Neem and tulle.  It's still only a few inches tall.  Maybe grew 1-2" since May-June.  I have 4 seed-seedlings planted to see how they do this fall / winter.  I'm building a frame for tulle right now, and plastic later.  My husband built a shallow wood tray for micro-greens (got the idea from the Heirloom Exposition).  And Kale?  Well, it's a favorite during the winter.  If you are growing radishes, then I think I will, also.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/23/2013, 5:09 pm

sanderson, I get lots of advice from neighbors who garden, but am finding out the hard way it is not always correct. Or maybe their gardens get a little more or less sun, etc. Like one neighbor who advised me late this spring that it was still a good time to plant spinach where we live; what did germinate put out one to four tiny leaves and got an inch or two tall, and all but one of them died. Others have suggested planting brussels sprouts now, and the local grange folks did too, so now I'm gambling on kale, spinach, brussels sprouts, peas, and radishes overwintering and maybe even producing something during the winter.

Everything is a gamble, especially since I'm a beginner, but at least the gambles are growing cheaper. I'm planting more and more from seed instead of as transplants, and most of my soil mix has been bought and/or is composting away. I've already got plenty of fertilizer and twine and tools etc. So I'm just going to be optimistic.

I was surprised by my pepper plants kicking out new crops, too. They're supposed to love the heat, but they seem to be loving the cool more.

I pulled up some tomato and cucumber plants yesterday, and it made me feel like a meanie. Sad For some reason I get very involved with the plants' personal struggle! I guess I'm a very silly person. But it does make more sense to free up that space for things more likely to produce during this part of the year.

Re micro-greens, I used to be really into sprouts, but didn't grow many this year. They're great, though. I should do that again. Good luck on your micro-greens! They make for a fun and nicely varied salad.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  sanderson on 9/24/2013, 12:39 am

Marc, Thanks for the Pepper-Upper! Out with most of the old, in with the winter new.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Aliakai on 9/26/2013, 9:54 pm

I've been clearing out all the rogue grass in my front and back yard in preparation for putting in a bunch of SFGs this year. It's been nice and cool out and the bad weather has been sporadic so I've been able to get plenty of work done tearing out the weeds. I'm looking forward to my new beds for next year!

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/26/2013, 11:28 pm

Welp, I went out back to check out the three red brussels sprouts plants I planted behind our retaining wall. Two, that is. The middle one is a hole. Looks like the moles have finally found that area. *sigh*

We've never been able to get rid of moles or even slow them down. I guess I'll just have to consider that area a wasteland for anything that isn't in a hard-bottomed pot. Shame; I've been developing the soil by layering woodchips and manure and some compost; guess I'll take the best of it out once the mole has snatched up the daikon I planted there. Supposedly radishes transplant poorly, so I won't bother removing them.

If either of my two remaining brussels sprouts plants are still there in the morning, though, I'll try to transplant those. I've really been looking forward to the whole idea of growing brussels sprouts, so I don't want to give up on them.

I do have three growing in my neighbor's garden, so I'm crossing my fingers on those. He has moles too!

Got elephant garlic and three other kinds of garlic, and will plant them next month sometime. I don't want to put them in too early, because sometimes we have some warmer weather coming up, and I don't want them to think spring came.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 9/27/2013, 10:22 am

Marc, Are you sure the Brussels sprout was snatched by a mole?  Moles are totally carnivores, eating grubs, worms, slugs, etc. found while working their tunnels.  Is it possible you have gophers?  They are herbivores and very destructive.  Here in St. Helens, we trap what moles we can--not because they make tunnels, but they make tunnels the voles (field mice) use, which do damage crops like strawberries, carrots, and tulip bulbs.  For moles we cannot trap, we staple 1/2" or 1/4" hardware cloth on the 4x4 squares of landscape timbers used as bases for the 4x4 raised beds.  For some plants (tulip bulbs), I've scavenged yard sales, Goodwill, etc. for wire baskets.  For each tulip bed, a hole big enough to hold the chosen basket is dug, layered with a bit of dirt and the bulbs, then filled level with the surrounding soil.  Critters cannot tunnel into the basket and munch on the bulbs.  I suspect this might work with your sprouts in the raised bed.  If the moles/voles or gophers cannot push into the basket, they can't eat the plants.   Nonna

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/27/2013, 10:01 pm

You're right, Nonna. I'm sometimes very clumsy saying moles for everything that digs a tunnel. I know we have moles, but this is probably a gopher.

Putting a brussel sprout inside a basket is something I hadn't considered. Good idea though! I've seen various size wire baskets at the dollar store around here. I would have to use a pretty big basket, I think, so the gopher couldn't come in and trim and tug on the roots all the time. I think I'll try that, though, the next time I plant in that bed.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  sanderson on 9/28/2013, 1:02 am

Or wrap the outside of the basket in metal fly screen or small opening chicken wire and then set it in the ground??

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Free Fall Gardening Seminar at Shorty's

Post  gwennifer on 9/28/2013, 11:21 am

For those in the Vancouver metro area, Shorty's Garden & Home is hosting a free seminar on fall vegetable gardening next Saturday October 5th:  


They do ask that you register.  Click on their website link above for the event page page where you can register on-line, or you can get their number there and  call them to reserve a spot.

If any of you are brave enough, give a shout out here if you'll be there and we can meet before or after for coffee/hot chocolate!

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/28/2013, 2:50 pm

@sanderson wrote:Or wrap the outside of the basket in metal fly screen or small opening chicken wire and then set it in the ground??
That's what I had been figuring you meant -- putting the basket into the ground. Relatively do-able, at dollar-store prices.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 9/28/2013, 8:52 pm

Years ago, we had cause to replace our ancient washing machine.  As the new machine was being installed, and the installer said he'd remove the old machine, I asked for the washer drum (a drum pierced around the edge with dime-sized holes).  With this drum and a problem of mole-tunnel-using voles, I dug a large hole, set the washer drum inside, filled it with soil and planted tulip bulbs.  For the first year ever, there were no losses of tulip bulbs to mouse molars.  I submitted the idea to Rodale Press for inclusion in their book, "1,001 Ingenious Gardening Ideas."  The idea was used and we got a free copy of the book for our submission.  Perhaps an old circumference-pierced washer or drier drum sunk into the ground would eliminate your problem, too.   Good gardening, Nonna

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/28/2013, 8:59 pm

Seems an unlikely thing to find, but an interesting idea to keep in mind. Nicely creative!

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  Marc Iverson on 9/30/2013, 11:00 pm

I garden at my home and at my neighbor's, and at my neighbor's (a little ways down the street), I saw the dreaded cabbage moth. I advised the other fellow who gardens there and has planted scads of cabbage crops. He asked me what we should do about it, and I told him my research here suggests by far the most effective thing is simply to cover the plants with row cover, and as quick as possible. It would take a LOT of row cover, though, so I don't know if he's up for it.

Unfortunately, if he's not up for it, the cabbage moths could thrive there and be happy to come land on my stuff too, so I guess I'd better cover up too. Back at my house, in the small space I have to garden behind the house, I covered up most of my crops with what I was told was a Remay equivalent. Six feet wide, which doesn't allow for a lot of height, but I'm still glad it's on. We had huge wind here this weekend, 30 to 40 with gusts supposedly up to 50 or 60. Real tree benders. Blew my peas from one side of their container to the other. So the cover helped with that, I'm sure, too.

My other co-gardener left me some extra garlic bulbs to plant, he said in a text message. If they're from the grocery store, I'm leery about planting them. If they're from a farm and meant for sale, I figure they'd be a better choice. I'll have to ask. (I don't text.)

I got four different kinds of garlic already, and look forward to planting them all next month. I think I'll plant some by my brussels sprouts, as I've read on this forum and elsewhere that garlic can repel a lot of pests, including, I think, cabbage moth.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

Post  sanderson on 9/30/2013, 11:31 pm

Marc,  What to do when someone thinks they are doing something nice for you . . .thinking 

If I were you, I would go ahead and plant them, even if it's in their own pot.  Or a grow bag of some kind.  I grew grocery store garlic and it was fine.  I think it was soft necked.

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Re: PNW: September 2013

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