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First SFG.... 2 squares left

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First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jwesley on 1/23/2014, 8:39 am

Hi everyone, I'll be starting my first sfg this year. I'm only doing one 4x4 to get my feet wet. I've got all but two squares accounted for and wanted some suggestions. I'm in cincinnati and the garden will mainly be for me, my wife, and two year old son. I'm trying to avoid anything viney, especially hard to grow, or requires more than one square. I'm not opposed to repeating something that I've already used. Any suggestions are appreciated.


Here is what I have so far... 
2 squares lettuce (mixed varietys) 
2 squares spinach (additional question below) 
2 squares tomato 
1 square radish 
1 square chard 
1 square kale 
1 square beets 
1 square carrot 
1 square bell pepper 
1 square jalape�o 
1 square basil


As far as I can tell, my last harvest of spinach will be sometime in June, until I can plant again in fall. Any suggestions for something to fill those squares in the middle of summer
Thanks in advance everyone, 
Jeff
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  llama momma on 1/23/2014, 8:49 am

I would check the back of the sfg book and the succession planting chart. Pick out what sounds appealing and plant away. Hint - for quick reference I took a fine pointed pencil and filled in the dates on the chart for each week. Saved myself lots of time later on.
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jwesley on 1/23/2014, 8:57 am

Thanks for the quick response.  I have been using the succession charts as one of my main planning tools; they have been a big help.
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jmsieglaff on 1/23/2014, 10:43 am

I follow my spinach (which for me @ ~43N and with the variety I grow is about June 10) with bush beans.  The bush beans produce nicely for the space used, are good fresh or cooked and beans replenish nitrogen back into the soil which the spinach used a good deal of.
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jwesley on 1/23/2014, 11:08 am

That's a great idea...  Will they outgrow a square?  Do they need to be trellised?  Thanks!
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  camprn on 1/23/2014, 11:11 am

Hi jwesley. Welcome to the SFG Forum!!
To provide applicable advice it,  would really help us to know where in the USA you are located.

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jwesley on 1/23/2014, 11:18 am

@camprn wrote:Hi jwesley. Welcome to the SFG Forum!!
To provide applicable advice it,  would really help us to know where in the USA you are located.
Updated, thank you.  I'm happy to have found an active forum... I tried one other and replies were non-existent.
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  camprn on 1/23/2014, 11:20 am

@jwesley wrote:
@camprn wrote:Hi jwesley. Welcome to the SFG Forum!!
To provide applicable advice it,  would really help us to know where in the USA you are located.
Updated, thank you.  I'm happy to have found an active forum... I tried one other and replies were non-existent.
 okay WE are happy to have you! So are you in USDA hardiness zone 5?

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books



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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jwesley on 1/23/2014, 11:37 am

Yes, zone 5.
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jmsieglaff on 1/23/2014, 11:47 am

As long as you buy bush beans, not pole beans, they will grow to about 24" in height, do not require any support and will stay in the square you plant them--you may get some leaves infringing on nearby squares but overall they work well in the SFG.
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  sanderson on 1/23/2014, 4:55 pm

Ditto on bush beans.  I love Dragon Tongue because of the purple and green pod colors.  Your son would love finding them!  But any bush bean should be fun.

Jwesley,  Welcome to the chattiest Forum ever!   glad you\'re here   I agree the others I have looked at are not anything like this one.  I love it and have learned so, so much in my 11 months of gardening.  Love that photos can be posted.  We all love looking at photos that others have posted.
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  brainchasm on 1/23/2014, 5:04 pm

Succession plant more radishes?  You won't be sorry, and they grow fast enough to keep you interested, since it's your first garden.

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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  FamilyGardening on 1/23/2014, 8:00 pm

I didn't see any sugar snap peas....these can be grown in the early spring and fall
you will want to grow a bush pea and not a pole pea since you don't want to trellis anything....they are our children's favorite....sweet, juicy and you eat the whole thing pod and all....

*Sugar Ann sugar snap pea*..... is a bush type of sugar snap pea, they grow about 24 inch's and I don't think they require any support....they mature in about 56 days....sugar snap peas, lettuce, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage like cool weather.....

tomatoes, peppers and basil like the warm summer....depending on your zone...which im not good with zones, you maybe able to plant some of those cool weather crops this spring and they should be done when its time to grow your summer crops, and then fall you should be able to get a few more cool weather crops in....

its also important to place your tomatoes in the right spot as not to block sun from anything that loves the sun or you can also use your tomatoes to shade out something that would prefer some shade, like if you have lettuce or spinach that is doing well but needed some shade once the hot weather kicks in.....also some tomato plants are more bushy and other are more taller....

happy gardening and  glad you\'re here  to our SFG forum!
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  camprn on 1/23/2014, 8:09 pm

I always support my sugar anns to assist in plant management and make the picking easier.

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  Marc Iverson on 1/23/2014, 9:30 pm

Peas are a great suggestion. I especially love Chinese snow peas, the kind you get in Chinese food. Regular snap peas are amazingly good too. It seems almost everyone who grows them says they never make it into the house.

Three more ideas:

1. If you don't have many flowers close by, plant some flowers to attract pollinators. The beauty doesn't hurt either, of course.

2. Plant some herbs. Fresh basil is delicious and a classy addition to many dishes. It can be very productive, too. And if you get sick of it fresh after a while, you can turn it into pesto sauce later.

3. How about growing something specifically for use in sauces or canning? Tomatillos make a great fruit for eating right off the vine when ripe, and they're also good in both salsa and chutney whether ripe or unripe. They got to be about a three to four foot tree-like bush, trimmed to a single stem until a couple of feet off the ground, when I grew them last year. The top got wide enough to cover two squares, but they were nicely productive. I also made green tomato/green apple chutney late last year with green tomatoes I picked off the vines when snow was imminent. It was so popular and went so fast that I will grow some tomatoes next year just for use as green tomatoes. Such a cool set of flavors and it lasts in the fridge for months. After the green tomato/green apple chutney was gone, I made a green tomato/tomatillo/green apple chutney and threw in a few cranberries, and that was just as popular. If you pick tomatoes when green, you can get a lot of production out of a single plant, too.

Anyway, something to think about. I was amazed how good that stuff was.



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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  brainchasm on 1/23/2014, 9:39 pm

I planted basil.

It turned into a damned tree.  Seriously, big thick wood stalks.  Would have been amazing, if it wasn't so tough to feed to the chipper/shredder.

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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  Goosegirl on 1/23/2014, 11:12 pm

@brainchasm wrote:I planted basil.

It turned into a damned tree.  Seriously, big thick wood stalks.  Would have been amazing, if it wasn't so tough to feed to the chipper/shredder.

It probably crossed with your sunflower! rofl 

GG
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  Marc Iverson on 1/24/2014, 12:24 am

I wish I could have a basil tree! Even if not fresh, it takes a lot of basil to make much pesto. What's your secret, or were you only sent by the devil to torment me?
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  sanderson on 1/24/2014, 1:12 am

Jwesley, I sent you a P.M. (see the P.M. above, it should be flashing for you). I sent a couple of photo ideas for you to consider.

Aren't we an active group of folks??
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  Goosegirl on 1/24/2014, 7:10 am

@Marc Iverson wrote:I wish I could have a basil tree!  Even if not fresh, it takes a lot of basil to make much pesto.  What's your secret, or were you only sent by the devil to torment me?

I generally plant large-leaf types of basil, and then just whine  sobbing when the pesto runs out.

GG

PS - Sorry for the hijack!
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jwesley on 1/24/2014, 9:06 am

Wow!  Thanks for all the good ideas.  I'll most likely due some kind of bush bean/pea, provided June is not to late to plant... I'm assuming they're ok to start indoors?  I actually received two different heirloom seed collections for xmas, and I don't think either one of them had bush beans.  I'll look again, but if there are none does any one have other suggestions on variety/source.  Thanks again!
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  jmsieglaff on 1/24/2014, 10:38 am

I haven't tried starting them indoors and transplanting--I just direct sow beans/peas, from what I've read they don't transplant well.  And it's plenty early to start those....I've started bush beans in mid July and have gotten a fall crop before frost.
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  camprn on 1/24/2014, 11:59 am

@jwesley wrote:Wow!  Thanks for all the good ideas.  I'll most likely due some kind of bush bean/pea, provided June is not to late to plant...
plant peas in April, beans in June after Memorial day. (that's what I do and I too am in zone 5).

@jwesley wrote:I'm assuming they're ok to start indoors?
They will do a whole lot better if you sow seeds directly into the garden at the proper time.

 
@jwesley wrote:I actually received two different heirloom seed collections for xmas, and I don't think either one of them had bush beans.  I'll look again, but if there are none does any one have other suggestions on variety/source.  Thanks again!
Are you asking  for a variety of bush beans specifically?

I have always had to provide support in the SFG for bush beans. I had to place string around the squares so the plants wouldn't fall over into the adjoining squares and shade the plants there.

http://www.almanac.com/gardening/planting-dates/WI/Madison

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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  Goosegirl on 1/24/2014, 7:16 pm

I have had good success with Tender Pod and Dragon's Tongue bush beans, direct planting them in the SFG in mid-June. I plant mine thick (4/sq, my sq are just under 1 sf) so they tend to support themselves well, however I have always done them around the outside of the box so they have 'flop' room in the walkways if they need it.

GG
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Re: First SFG.... 2 squares left

Post  sanderson on 1/24/2014, 8:12 pm

Rooster wrote that he planted 9/square but I misread it. I did 8/sq and they were fine. I used cut and bent wire coat hangers as little picket fences around the 3 squares. Got a little flop but mainly upright.
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