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Upper South: May garden updates?

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Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  pattipan on 5/3/2010, 1:17 pm

Hey, Upper Southerners! (I keep wanting to abbreviate our region to US...or UPS, but I think it might be corn-fusing! ;o)

I'm very curious to know how is your SFG doing this first week of May. Take a minute to post your progress here, that is if you can take time out from gardening for a few minutes!

The weather here in the mountains of WV has been crazy! Two days last week we had freeze temps and the very next weekend we had record highs in the 90's! I had set my tomato and pepper plants out for a few hours on Saturday for their hardening off period and I think they got sun burnt. They are looking very anemic...sigh. They look small compared to what I see at the greenhouse, but I am attributing the size to being organic and getting a late start. I am anxious to get them in the SFG, but our last frost date is May 19...do I dare?

May is one of the busiest months for planting, I can't wait to get all the squares planted!
Pattipan
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Megan on 5/3/2010, 8:01 pm

The weather here in Virginia is also crazy. We had near freeze (mid to lowish 30's) just last week and now low 80's.

My indoor-started tomatoes and peppers have only their seed leaves, and I just about cry when I see those huge plants at Home Depot... but, I am telling myself that mine are growing at a natural pace. The stuff I direct seeded is only now starting to come up, and cold-weather plants only, at that. The beans, peas, cukes, corn, squash, melon, etc., haven't shown their faces yet (nor the direct seeded tomatos/peppers). Just this afternoon, I found the first carrot sprouts.

This past weekend I put in a second planting of lettuce, rapini, kohlrabi, pak choi, chard, and some onions.

I can't wait!
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  pattipan on 5/3/2010, 9:21 pm

@Megan wrote:The weather here in Virginia is also crazy. We had near freeze (mid to lowish 30's) just last week and now low 80's.

My indoor-started tomatoes and peppers have only their seed leaves, and I just about cry when I see those huge plants at Home Depot... but, I am telling myself that mine are growing at a natural pace. The stuff I direct seeded is only now starting to come up, and cold-weather plants only, at that. The beans, peas, cukes, corn, squash, melon, etc., haven't shown their faces yet (nor the direct seeded tomatos/peppers). Just this afternoon, I found the first carrot sprouts.

This past weekend I put in a second planting of lettuce, rapini, kohlrabi, pak choi, chard, and some onions.

I can't wait!

Megan,
I know what you mean about seeing those large plants! My DH came home yesterday and said the tomato plants at the local hardware were big and bushy and wondered why the ones I started were only 6" tall (if that). I think I might have gotten a little defensive. :-) I told him if he would build me a greenhouse...and if we fed them chemicals than ours might be further along! I'm sure our tomatoes will be fine, they always have been and when frost days are behind us, they will take off. Last year these WV Centennial tomatoes were to the top of the trellis and over!

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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Megan on 5/4/2010, 8:33 pm

More things up, though you can't see them from this shot. Needs neatening and grass cut!

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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  miinva on 5/4/2010, 9:57 pm

That's so true about tomatoes! I don't want to eat chemicals so I'm happy to accept a few less tomatoes for doing things the organic way Smile

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Re: May updates

Post  NancyD on 5/7/2010, 8:01 pm

I just finished buiding my first Mel's trellis today! It was super simple! When even I can do it, you KNOW it's simple- LOL!!

When I was done, I weeded the SFG bed, and was having the same discussion with myself about if it's too early to put the tomatoes and peppers in the ground. I noticed that I had some volunteer tomatoes from last year in the bed, so I'm thinking it might be OK. I have 2 4x4 boxes, and I've only planted the one so far. I'm off on Tues, so I hope to plant the second box (and the tomatoes) then.

Happy Gardening!
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  pattipan on 5/7/2010, 9:51 pm

...and was having the same discussion with myself about if it's too early
to put the tomatoes and peppers in the ground. I noticed that I had some
volunteer tomatoes from last year in the bed, so I'm thinking it might
be OK. I have 2 4x4 boxes, and I've only planted the one so far. I'm off
on Tues, so I hope to plant the second box (and the tomatoes) then.


Nancy,
Have you looked at our weather for Sunday evening (May 9)? Here in Pendleton County, WV the temp will be around 32 degrees. I am holding off on planting my tomatoes until it warms up a bit more, my plants are stressed enough as it is, so I don't want to loose them. Hopefully by the end of the week freezing weather will be behind us! My dad always said don't plant tomatoes until after Mother's Day -- this year I think he's right! Hopefully the temps wil level off soon, 'cause these yo-yo temperatures are driving me bonkers!

We're also in bad need of some good soaking rain. We did get a rain barrel a couple of weeks ago and I'm so glad we did! It's really going to save on the water bill, I know.

Patti
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Megan on 5/7/2010, 10:15 pm

Yikes Patty! Thank you for the heads up. My forecast for Sunday says 38, but I've seen the actual vary quite a bit from the predicted. Crazy weather. Oh well, my tomatoes and peppers are no where near ready to set out anyway.

I am jealous of your rain barrel!
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  pattipan on 5/8/2010, 10:28 am

Here's a pic of our new rain barrel. It holds 50 gallons. Got it from Ace for $74 (includes tax). I ordered it online and had it shipped to the store. It was almost $20.00 cheaper that way!



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Re: May Updates

Post  NancyD on 5/8/2010, 8:45 pm

Thanks, Pattipan! I knew they were predicting the upper 30's for my area for tonight. The wind has been blowing fiercely all day. I must have gotten used to summer, because that wind feels cold to me! My plants have been hardened off, and I've been leaving them out, but I think I'll bring them in tonight.

I'm jealous of your rain barrel. I want one, too!!
Batten down the hatches!
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Chopper on 5/9/2010, 1:19 am

I love the rain barrel. I have been thinking a lot about getting one. It may not gather an inch in it for the next few months but eventually... And it would set my mind at ease for emergency water in the case of an earthquake. At least I will have fresh food handy. :>

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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Jiro on 5/9/2010, 10:22 pm

Thanks for starting the thread; it's interesting to see how others are progressing in the same area, especially with the crazy weather the past few weeks. Here's where I stand in early May:

* The only thing not doing great is the second crop of cos lettuce that I directly sowed back in March... they're alive, but remain stunted little seedlings. The leaf lettuce and my Swiss chard had the same problem, but went through a growth spurt over the past week. We'll see how they fare, but I'll likely snip them and plant a transplant or keep it open to grow a fall / Winter storage tomato.

* Everything else is going gangbusters: sugar snap peas, lettuce, carrots, cherry tomato, bell peppers. The radishes will be ready for salads in a couple of weeks and much to my surprise, my ground cherry plants have already formed multiple fruit husks.

* Had to build additional support for my peas... glad I got it done yesterday before the 25+ knot winds hit!
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Jiro on 5/21/2010, 6:40 pm

Small update. Enjoyed my first meal out of the SFG in the form of a salad. Cos and leaf lettuce along with some scarlet globe radishes and radish greens. Tasty...
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Megan on 5/21/2010, 7:29 pm

That's great, Jiro! I had my first taste of my SFG garden, too... I nibbled some radish tops from some thinnings. Wink
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  miinva on 5/21/2010, 10:11 pm

Can you eat radish tops? I was wondering about that last weekend when we picked up a beautiful bunch of radishes at the farmer's market.

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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Megan on 5/21/2010, 11:03 pm

I'm still alive Smile Some of the leaves even had a characteristic radish bite to them, small as they were.
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Jiro on 5/22/2010, 7:56 am

Yes, the entire radish plant is edible. And the greens are tasty... they're often in "gourmet" salad mixes. Many prefer the greens of seedlings and will pay $$$$ for these "microgreens."
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Megan on 5/22/2010, 8:03 am

Thanks, Jiro. What I find interesting is that my radish greens look nothing like the greens I see on storebought radishes.

The ones in the store are very crinkly, apparently naturally so, and seem pretty tough/fibrous. In the past I've thought a few times about trying them, but they are generally pretty torn up and covered in dirt, and I never went to the trouble of trying to clean them up for a taste.

The leaves on my radishes aren't crinkled at all, are soft and have a little substance to them... overall shape/texture is vaguely similar to baby spinach. Is that odd?
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  miinva on 5/22/2010, 9:21 pm

What kind of radishes did you plant? I planted Pink Slipper and Saxa and they're just now coming up because I just figured out I like sauteed radishes a week or so ago Smile

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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Jiro on 5/23/2010, 12:08 am

Megan: Yeah, I hadn't thought about that. My radish greens do look a bit like spinach while the leaves on the radishes at my grocery don't look that appetizing. Chalk it up to different varieties, I guess.

Miinva: Mine are Early Scarlet Globe from SSE: http://www.seedsavers.org/Details.aspx?itemNo=419
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Re: Upper South: May garden updates?

Post  Megan on 5/23/2010, 4:36 am

I planted White Hailstone radishes from Baker Creek -- bottom right square in the picture below.



Hmm... sauteed radishes... yum. Straight in butter, or do you add anything?
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