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2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 6/27/2016, 3:18 am

RT, Your Mom must be tickled pink!

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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 6/27/2016, 7:33 pm

I think so, last year, the cucumbers spanned the divide onto her deck, but she "accused" them of trying to grab her like the plant from Little Shop of Horrors. Very Happy
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 7/4/2016, 11:31 pm

Happy July 4th everyone.
Not much to report here...mainly because I was out of town for the last week and haven't even looked at the beds yet.

We did end up pulling out the squash plants. Between the pickle worms and possibly SVB and the heat, the plants just flat out died.

Hopefully, I will get back in the garden this week and get some pictures.

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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 8/15/2016, 11:02 pm

Just popping in to say that I'm still alive...which is more than I can say for most of my plants. Much like Kay, I had issues with SVB on my squash, Pickle worms in my cukes and not much luck with my slicing tomatoes. (DW got 3 sandwiches)

On the upside, the cherry toms did really well. My cukes did provide lots early on and are still flowering. I hit them with sevin dust to try to knock out those dastardly pickle worms. Oh and I think I got some good compost...it wasn't hot and fast, but neither am I (any more) Razz

I did clean out several squares and now have vacancies. Any suggestions for some fall crops or anything that needs to be planted to grow over the winter?

Pictures coming soon.
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 8/16/2016, 1:49 am

Did you grow anything last winter? If so, what worked? If you didn't, I hope your Regional neighbors can help. Winter gardens are, well, refreshing.

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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  CapeCoddess on 8/16/2016, 3:54 pm

@ralitaco wrote:

I did clean out several squares and now have vacancies. Any suggestions for some fall crops or anything that needs to be planted to grow over the winter?

Pictures coming soon.

Howdy do!  happy hi  Kale can winter over, especially Russian Red and Winterbor.  Carrots of course but you want to be able to get to them before the MM freezes.

CC
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 8/16/2016, 7:33 pm

@sanderson wrote:Did you grow anything last winter?
Never have planted anything for the fall/winter. Tomatoes and cucumbers and zucchini are about the extent of my successful veggies.

@sanderson wrote: If you didn't, I hope your Regional neighbors can help.
Me too. I posted in that thread too.

Setting aside regional planting times, what are good fall crops. I heard broccoli and cauliflower. What about "winter" squash...what does the "winter" mean?

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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 8/16/2016, 7:35 pm

@CapeCoddess wrote:Kale can winter over, especially Russian Red and Winterbor.  Carrots of course but you want to be able to get to them before the MM freezes.

CC
Hey CC. While kale may winter over and my Dr. says I need to eat more of it, I don't really like it.

Now carrots...that could be interesting. when are they normally planted and harvested.
Also what is the concern about the MM freezing? does it make it hard to harvest or does it damage the carrots?

Thanks
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 8/16/2016, 7:50 pm

The name Winter squash is confusing.  I planted my first WS in the fall, thinking it was for winter growing! Embarassed Wrong.  They are grown in summer like summer squash but they develop hard skin so they can be harvested and stored for winter eating.  This thread shows a member's fall harvest: http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t16788-butternut-squash#251182

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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  yolos on 8/16/2016, 9:17 pm

The information for my area says I can plant carrots from 8/20 - 9/15.  Last year I planted on 9/1 and they did not mature before winter set in.  They did overwinter though and I harvested them in the early spring.  This year I am going to succession plant to see what works best.  Some on 8/21 + 8/28 + 9/4 + 9/11.  Then I will have some idea of the exact time to plant next year.  I started preparing about a 4 x 4 foot area with a top hat so I will be on schedule to plant this weekend.  My only problem though is the area I have open will not get much sun as the angle of the sun changes this fall.  So, we shall see.
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  CapeCoddess on 8/17/2016, 11:28 am

@ralitaco wrote:
@CapeCoddess wrote:Kale can winter over, especially Russian Red and Winterbor.  Carrots of course but you want to be able to get to them before the MM freezes.

CC
Hey CC. While kale may winter over and my Dr. says I need to eat more of it, I don't really like it.

Now carrots...that could be interesting. when are they normally planted and harvested.
Also what is the concern about the MM freezing? does it make it hard to harvest or does it damage the carrots?

Thanks

A bit of kale in a fruit smoothie isn't detectable if you want to give it a whirl.  Wink  There are lots of good smoothie recipes online.

As Yolos mentions, succession plant the carrots starting now and see what works best in your area.

The carrots will be fine under frozen MM, although I practically bloodied my fingers one year trying to get carrots out. Rolling Eyes Had to bring out the hammer and chisel for a soup I was making.  Not worth it in my book.  

You can even harvest overwintered ones in the spring if you want to wait although my overwintered ones were woody and I didn't ever purposely do it again.  But this spring I found a couple from last year that I'd missed and they were delicious, Chantenay.  So maybe wintering over has to do with the variety...?
idk  
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 8/17/2016, 9:17 pm

@sanderson wrote:The name Winter squash is confusing.  I planted my first WS in the fall, thinking it was for winter growing! Embarassed Wrong.  They are grown in summer like summer squash but they develop hard skin so they can be harvested and stored for winter eating.  
Well I was thinking that you planted summer squash in the spring for a summer harvest AND that you would plant winter squash in the fall for a Winter harvest. Embarassed


That is an awesome harvest.
Did I read that thread correctly and see that you can store some of those squash with the hard rind for months?
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 8/17/2016, 9:23 pm

@yolos wrote:The information for my area says I can plant carrots from 8/20 - 9/15. Last year I planted on 9/1 and they did not mature before winter set in.  They did overwinter though and I harvested them in the early spring.  This year I am going to succession plant to see what works best.

I stumbled onto garden.org and they have a planting calendar. Based on my zip code, it says I can plant carrots from Aug 7 - Oct 6. So I may give them a try in succession like you.

@yolos wrote:I started preparing about a 4 x 4 foot area with a top hat so I will be on schedule to plant this weekend.
That will be a lot of carrots! How far apart do you do plant them. The packet of seeds I had said thin to 1" but that would be about 100 per square. Also, are you doing a top hat on the entire 4'x4' area?
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 8/17/2016, 9:25 pm

CC thanks for the advice

@CapeCoddess wrote:Had to bring out the hammer and chisel for a soup I was making.  
rofl
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  yolos on 8/17/2016, 10:26 pm

@ralitaco wrote:
I started preparing about a 4 x 4 foot area with a top hat so I will be on schedule to plant this weekend.
That will be a lot of carrots! How far apart do you do plant them. The packet of seeds
I had said thin to 1" but that would be about 100 per square. Also, are you doing a top hat on the entire 4'x4' area?
Yes, the top hat is the whole 4 x 4.  I plan to plant potatoes in that same area in early spring so I just made the whole thing a top hat.  I am thinking very seriously about planting the carrots in double rows with the double rows spaced about 12 inches apart.  Then planting the potatoes in Feb between the double rows of carrots. Buy the time the carrots are ready to pull, the potatoes will be up and growing.  Maybe.   Don't know if that will work.  

I was on the internet last night trying to research how far apart to space the carrots.  Mels Book says plant 16 per square.  Translate that into normal spacing and you get thinning to one every 4 inches.  My packets say thin to (depending on the variety) anywhere from 2 inches to 4 inches.  What I found on the internet that I liked was to plant 3-4 seeds per inch in rows.  When 2 inches tall thin to 2 inches apart.  When 4 inches tall thin to 4 inches apart.  What I settled on was to run a soaker hose down a double row and plant the seeds on either side of the soaker hose.  With maybe 12 inches between the soaker hoses.  When I try to plant 16 per square, they are so crammed in there that I can't see what is going on down inside the middle of the square.  So I am going to try this coming year to not plant so intensively.  I have lima beans growing now and I can't tell when they are ready to harvest without almost destroying the plants trying to find the limas that are ready to be harvested.
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 8/19/2016, 3:19 am

RT, I still have 2 spaghetti squash that I harvested fall 2015!! The agricultural Indians grew beans, corn and squash, all of which could be stored for winter eating.

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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 8/19/2016, 8:59 am

golly gee whiz
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Compost Update

Post  ralitaco on 8/26/2016, 12:20 am

Well here are some pictures of my COLD compost pile which was my failed attempt at a hot pile that started out 3'x3'x3'...

I had sifted about 1/2 already


Close-up


My Sifter


Finished product (TADA)



I am starting another cold pile using the sifted out bits from this pile, some small amounts of rabbit manure that my neighbor brings over, some coffee grinds, kitchen scraps, the plants from the SFG, leaves and hopefully some horse manure and seaweed.
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 8/26/2016, 4:37 am

It's hard to tell in a photo, but it looks like there is some good compost there.

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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  yolos on 8/26/2016, 8:18 am

Oh, that looks like good compost to me.  I love your sifter.
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compost test?

Post  ralitaco on 9/2/2016, 1:58 pm

@sanderson wrote:It's hard to tell in a photo, but it looks like there is some good compost there.  
Thanks Sanderson.
Is there a way to tell if compost is good? Is there some sort of test or anything?
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compost Sifter

Post  ralitaco on 9/2/2016, 2:08 pm

@yolos wrote:Oh, that looks like good compost to me.  I love your sifter.
Thanks yolos.
The wheels of the sifter are from an old lawnmower. I screwed together some 2x4's and attached the the 1/4" mesh. There are times where I contemplate adding a second row of 2x4's to keep the compost in better, but I will need to come up with a better way to dump the larger pieces. As it is, the sifter gets heavy after shaking it by hand and then lifting and dumping the large chunks. I am also contemplating adding some vertical dowels to use as hand holds when shaking.
I also am trying to figure out how to add a "speed" bump on the rails to cause the sifter to bounce and help the sifting process. I am testing adding 1 or 2 1x strips.
Additionally, I am going to do what someone else did on this forum (sanderson or yolos, I think)...I'm going to add some weed cloth down the sides of the compost bin to keep in that precious sifted compost.
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05/29/2016

Post  ralitaco on 9/2/2016, 3:06 pm

In order to be a man of my word...albeit much later than I planned, here are some updated photos. (I will post them separately by date)


Cukes - Right at the top of the trellis and before the dreaded pickle worms from hell.
Photo credit goes to my DW


Last edited by ralitaco on 9/2/2016, 3:10 pm; edited 1 time in total
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06/03/2016

Post  ralitaco on 9/2/2016, 3:08 pm

Big Zac Tomatoes, aka DW's future sandwich.
Photo credit: my DW

Cherry Tomatoes (Tommy Toe, I think).
Photo credit: my DW
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06/13/2016

Post  ralitaco on 9/2/2016, 3:18 pm

Harvest:
Photo credit: my DW

Yellow squash: a bit seedy
Cherry Toms: good
Roma toms: little and never did much. I think they were shaded out.
Cucumbers: Pre-Pickle Worm invasion. One of the cukes somehow managed to grow in a circle.
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Re: 2016 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

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