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Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

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Question about watering

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/4/2017, 5:35 am

First of all thank you for the words of encouragement!  I'm taking pics as I go along (from day1!) and will try to upload some to a host site soon so I can post the links here.
Now, I want to use a timer to water. I was going to buy drippers (flow adjustable) to attach to 1/4 tubing, coming off 1/2 pipe/tube from the source.  Adjusting drippers will allow me to adjust for little water for tomatoes and say more for carrots for example.  I read spacing them 6" apart thru the bed seems ideal.  Anyone with experience on that?  Is it best to start 6" in from the side or run the 1st tube to water along the inside edge of the box?
I considered tubes with evenly spaced holes but that would overwater some plants that don't want a lot of water.
The beauty is I can adjust the flow for whatever is growing in each square at that moment as the seasons/plant replacements proceed.
I'm going with a device that can drip but can also lightly spray out.
see
https://www.amazon.it/KING-WAY-Irrigazione-Gocciolatori-Gocciolante/dp/B01DW7V4L6/ref=pd_sbs_86_4?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=2FPG9ZFEFMC2543QVXVS

as it has images of the dripper doing it's spray and drip thing. Though I'd position them so they spray like a sunflower head laid flat... if that's clear. Of course I can dial it down as I said, to a drip/smaller spray.  I'm doing 2 separate boxes 1m x 1m; so I figured maybe 20 per box?  If I go along the inside edge I'd have 7 lines running the length, and then I figure I can space the drippers 6" apart down each line?  That's 84 (both boxes) and if I need that many they sell a bag of 100 which would make more sense.  Each dripper can be adjusted from a drip to a reach of nearly a foot, so they say.  But I imagine with a 1 foot spray radius that the center might not get adequate water. Perhaps letting it spray out about 6 inches?  Would Mel's mix provide for enough capillary action to wet the soil around it adequately in that case?
Thank you!! Very Happy
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/5/2017, 3:00 am

Nomadic,  I have a system that drips every 6".  Read the information to see how many tube plus emitter you can put on a length of 1/2" solid tubing.  One thing I would do is keep all the heads as drips instead of mixing spray and drips together for a more even coverage.  Make tiny adjustments to the number of drips per minute.  I don't know how opening a few heads for spray will affect the pressure for the remaining drips.  I hope this makes sense.  This is a photo of my drip system showing 4 drip emitters (built into the 1/4" tubing) per square foot, 6" apart.  This spacing allows 1, 4, 9 or 16 plants per square foot. My apology. The emitters do not show up that well as they are built into the tubing.

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Thank you! but ??

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/5/2017, 6:49 am

Sanderson,
Thanks for the picture & explanation.  Nice setup!  Cool I understand what you're saying about setting all to drip and none to spray.  The capillary capabilities of the soil mix should allow even absorption using drip flows. I can lower the drip rate even more as necessary/where required. 

- It seems your tubes are perforated rather than having physical "emitters", unless they are underneath the tubing?  I take it you don't/can't adjust your individual emitters flow?

- Forgive me if I'm wrong, but I saved & enlarged the image and have questions? It seems each square has 2 lines with one more under the center grid. That answers my question as far as not needing to run a tube along the inside edge of the box, thanks!  So starting from the edge of the box, that works out to 1 tube every 4".  Are you separating the emitters on each run/length by 6"?  Or do you maintain the 4" also between each physical emitter on each tube run/length? Since my boxes are each 3x3, I would use 8 lines to get the same coverage as you have?! 
- You suggested "Read the information to see how many tube plus emitter you can put on a length of 1/2" solid tubing."  Is that discussion covered in this forum? I was going to split the main water feed into at least two, 1/2" feed lines. One for the 2 boxes; I figured on splitting that 1/2 feed line into two 1/4" lines running the 2nd line across the inside of the 1st box (or under ground to the 2nd box) and the other one (or 2) 1/2" line(s) for the traditional garden rows.  I think though it might be wiser to tap the 1/2" at the 1st box and continue 1/2" tube across/underground to the 2nd SFG box, which will be separated by a 36"path.


- Also I noted the PVC tube in a tube setup you have at the top of the image.  If those are only at those corners(?) are they for setting up a trellis for beans/tomatoes?  Assuming you placed them in all 4 corners, I guess you can also adapt it to place cold weather/bird/insect covers as well?!  Correct?!  Again, very, very nice!!   Cool Cool 
I want to incorporate that into my design Very Happy , as adding it later would probably be more complicated as I'd have to dig thru to the weed cloth and wind up making a bigger hole in that to be able to cut a hole in the hardware cloth under the weed block so the tube passes  into the ground for stability.  I plan on leaving some space between the two disparate cloths, so moles don't damage the weed blocker.  I'll set the bottom of the hardware cloth maybe 2-3 inches below the bottoms of the boxes, bending the edges up to fasten to the box frame, throw regular dirt & tamp into the gap and then put down the weed cloth.
Thanks again!
BTW, 3 coats of linseed oil on the wood so far!  Nice honey color. Soon I'll pre-drill/pre-assemble the boxes (I will disassemble for the trip to the garden plot, fastening the HW & weed cloths onsite.  I figure once the holes are drilled, I let some oil run into the holes the night or 2 before I take them onsite... can't hurt!?
Most of my soil mix ingredients arrived yesterday; drip emitters & tubing today.
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/5/2017, 3:58 pm

I will have to get back with you later in the day.  Sun is out and there is a lot of garden and yard work to do.  Here are photos of the PVC tube set up.  The 1" PVC sections (I call them "cup holders") are secured with metal plumbers tape and screws to the inside corners of the boxes.  The frames are 1/2" PVC and slip into the holders.

Or, you could attach on the outside of the boxes.  Pretend this is a 1" PVC pipe.  I no longer use pipes on the outside of the boxes.  This is a left over that I hadn't removed when the photo was taken.  

Here is the style of frame I use, looks like a house.  Nothing is glued together so I can mix and match frames according the season or plant.  I use cotton string to "tie" horizontal runs together.

For the longer boxes, there are 1" PVC at mid point.


Bridal tulle over winter crops (such as broccoli, cabbage, kale, etc.) to keep the white butterfly/green caterpillar away. You can also see a light green sheer curtain shading the newly planted winter crops.

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Very nice setup!

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/6/2017, 1:57 am

Thanks for the pictures!  Very impressive indeed!! You're doing exactly what I want to do as far as the PVC pipes!  Cool  I figure I'll add piping systems as needed/as I go along.  I just want to have the corner support system in place from the get go. Since my boxes (though on the ground) can be exposed to strong winds (and no wind-breaking fences as you are blessed with!), I will probably bury the 1" PVC into the ground a little (at least 6"), but still clamp it to the inside of the box as you did.  I'm just afraid if it gets windy (ass it can esp., before a storm) it'll rip off the inside and my tomatoes or whatever will go with them.  Overkill?
Also, I couldn't help but notice the round 4"-5"? capped PVC mini towers generally near the center of your boxes.  What are those?  I thought maybe part of some kind of drain system so you don't have water running from your table boxes onto the ground, but I'm sure the real purpose is more simple than that hypothesis!  I really like your table boxes too!  I might try one or 2 of those next year if things go well.

The watering thing is more complicated.  One nearby gardener used 1" tubing to carry the water and from there ran off those weeping tubes (which they said didn't last a season), but they had bad flooding/due to over-watering 1st year and swapped in a 1/2" perforated hose feeding off the 1" (they admitted the 1" was overkill).  Everyone else seems to be using 3/4 as the feed line and breaking it down to 1/2 for watering and/or from there 1/4 if needed for more controlled/precision watering. Of course none of them are doing SFG!  Yet!
My plan is to go with 2 peripheral lines of 3/4" main line tubes one for the traditional garden (stepping down to 1/2" perforated hose to water) and the other for the 2 SFG boxes using 1/4" tubing with drippers. I guess I have to reduce, at least briefly, from 3/4 to 1/2 before stepping to 1/4". I read somewhere you shouldn't reduce more steeply than that.  BTW, I think I saw a picture of the emitters you use, kind of a nipple hanging down?
Thanks again so muuh for the pics and your advice!
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/6/2017, 2:50 am

@Nomadic1 wrote:Thanks for the pictures!  Very impressive indeed!! You're doing exactly what I want to do as far as the PVC pipes!  Cool  I figure I'll add piping systems as needed/as I go along.  I just want to have the corner support system in place from the get go. Since my boxes (though on the ground) can be exposed to strong winds (and no wind-breaking fences as you are blessed with!), I will probably bury the 1" PVC into the ground a little (at least 6"), but still clamp it to the inside of the box as you did.  I'm just afraid if it gets windy (ass it can esp., before a storm) it'll rip off the inside and my tomatoes or whatever will go with them.  Overkill?
Yes, overkill.  I've had horizontal rain storms and never lost a frame.  One of the screws pulled out but these have been in place since spring of 2014.

Also, I couldn't help but notice the round 4"-5"? capped PVC mini towers generally near the center of your boxes.  What are those?
Worm tubes.  Wait until next year for these.   Very Happy

I really like your table boxes too!  I might try one or 2 of those next year if things go well.[\quote]I love my table top boxes.  I would recommend that the first one you try is a 2' x 4' for 8 herbs.  Some are perennial and overwinter fine.  Others, like basil are annuals.  Think of your favorite 8 herbs.

The watering thing is more complicated. . . .  Of course none of them are doing SFG!  Yet!
My plan is to go with 2 peripheral lines of 3/4" main line tubes one for the traditional garden (stepping down to 1/2" perforated hose to water) and the other for the 2 SFG boxes using 1/4" tubing with drippers. I guess I have to reduce, at least briefly, from 3/4 to 1/2 before stepping to 1/4". I read somewhere you shouldn't reduce more steeply than that.
You will have to take your clues from your neighbors.  This is the 1/4" dripper lines that I use.  https://www.dripworks.com/soaker-dripline-6-spacing  But, you are going with the other design of adjustable heads on 1/2" solid lines.

BTW, I think I saw a picture of the emitters you use, kind of a nipple hanging down?
I looked through the pictures but couldn't find a suspended dripper.  I do use them for individual pots, though.

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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/6/2017, 3:24 am

@Nomadic1 wrote:Sanderson,
Thanks for the picture & explanation.  Nice setup!  Cool I understand what you're saying about setting all to drip and none to spray.  The capillary capabilities of the soil mix should allow even absorption using drip flows. I can lower the drip rate even more as necessary/where required. 

- It seems your tubes are perforated rather than having physical "emitters", unless they are underneath the tubing?  I take it you don't/can't adjust your individual emitters flow?
I answered this in the other reply.  The emitters are built in

- Forgive me if I'm wrong, but I saved & enlarged the image and have questions? It seems each square has 2 lines with one more under the center grid. That answers my question as far as not needing to run a tube along the inside edge of the box, thanks!  So starting from the edge of the box, that works out to 1 tube every 4".  Are you separating the emitters on each run/length by 6"?  Or do you maintain the 4" also between each physical emitter on each tube run/length? Since my boxes are each 3x3, I would use 8 lines to get the same coverage as you have?!
Your design is different from mine.  I think yours call for the 1/2" on the grid line with the little tubes sticking off them.  If that's the case, you will have a 1/2" at Zero foot, another at 1 foot, a 3rd one at 2 feet and the 4th one at 3 feet.  I use the word feet loosely.  For each square you will have 2 little tubes coming off the Zero foot line and the 3 feet line.  Four (4) little tubes will come off the  one foot line and the 2 foot line.  ??
You suggested "Read the information to see how many tube plus emitter you can put on a length of 1/2" solid tubing."  Is that discussion covered in this forum? I was going to split the main water feed into at least two, 1/2" feed lines. One for the 2 boxes; I figured on splitting that 1/2 feed line into two 1/4" lines running the 2nd line across the inside of the 1st box (or under ground to the 2nd box) and the other one (or 2) 1/2" line(s) for the traditional garden rows.  I think though it might be wiser to tap the 1/2" at the 1st box and continue 1/2" tube across/underground to the 2nd SFG box, which will be separated by a 36"path.
I replied in the other reply.

- Also I noted the PVC tube in a tube setup you have at the top of the image.  If those are only at those corners(?) are they for setting up a trellis for beans/tomatoes?  Assuming you placed them in all 4 corners, I guess you can also adapt it to place cold weather/bird/insect covers as well?!  Correct?!  Again, very, very nice!!   Cool Cool 
I use the cages for bridal tulle against the white butterfly, 4 mil plastic against bad rain storms, hail or freeze, or for shade cloth.

I want to incorporate that into my design Very Happy , as adding it later would probably be more complicated as I'd have to dig thru to the weed cloth and wind up making a bigger hole in that to be able to cut a hole in the hardware cloth under the weed block so the tube passes  into the ground for stability.  I plan on leaving some space between the two disparate cloths, so moles don't damage the weed blocker.  I'll set the bottom of the hardware cloth maybe 2-3 inches below the bottoms of the boxes, bending the edges up to fasten to the box frame, throw regular dirt & tamp into the gap and then put down the weed cloth.
Metal hardware cloth against moles is great!!  You can set the weed cloth on top of the hardware cloth.  I run the weed fabric up the inside of the box also, also.  Over kill on putting the tubes down through the hardware cloth and weed fabric.  Wink
Thanks again!
BTW, 3 coats of linseed oil on the wood so far!  Nice honey color. Soon I'll pre-drill/pre-assemble the boxes (I will disassemble for the trip to the garden plot, fastening the HW & weed cloths onsite.  I figure once the holes are drilled, I let some oil run into the holes the night or 2 before I take them onsite... can't hurt!?
Most of my soil mix ingredients arrived yesterday; drip emitters & tubing today.
You won't be drilling any holes  in the HW cloth and weed cloth. Wink  Fasten the HW cloth to the bottoms, then line the inside of the box with weed fabric.  Only scissors required.  I recommend strong commercial grade weed fabric.  The cheaper thin black plastic stuff gets torn up pulling out some plants.  You can also just cut the plant off under ground and let the roots compost in place  As my beds are all off the ground with plywood bottoms, my roots do not grow through the weed fabric into the dirt beneath.  Razz  Raw linseed oil?

I hope this helps.

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Thank you

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/6/2017, 8:34 am

Thank you Sanderson again for your invaluable advice,
I'll follow your advice for the PVC tubing & just mount to the inside corners. 
I'm actually watering with 1/4" tubing (too bad the tube you use/included link isn't sold here!)  I'll have to pick it up next trip to the States.  We can only water 15 minutes out of every hour (to avoid pressure problems-one of four 1/4 hour slots is assigned depending on ones lot number/range) and my timer will allow 2 waterings per day. So that should suffice, I hope.  I was thinking to just run one 1/2" tube across each box (at square 0) Or even just a 1/4" line(fed by a 1/2")  and then run 1/4" feed lines perpendicular all the way down the box off the main line, each 1/4" line would be spaced 4" from the next. 
No one is doing SFG here; so I'm flying blind in this sense.  They might need to water more heavily with their traditional gardens, even with the few synergy systems they use.  I'm counting on Mel's mix to hold the water it does get and give it back when needed. If the 1/4" winds up not being enough, I can try increasing the flow and/or either remove the 1/4" runs & replace them with the 1/2" (exactly the same as the 1/4" you use as far as emitters).  In fact the traditional garden part will use those 1/2" tube with evenly spaced holes/emitters. Some people use that; some use the emitters I bought.   I went that route as I was concerned about over-watering certain plants like tomatoes. Time will tell.
It was suggested by a mgr there to raise the beds a bit and cut a drainage canal of sorts along the peripheral wire fence separating each garden plot to help drain water from heavy downpours. So the soil apparently drains poorly.  We in fact already planned on raising the traditional rows a bit with a border.  A fellow gardener showed me his carrots which due to the poor/hard soil were stubby having grown back on themselves, a few others there have mentioned the same thing. I know I won't have that problem with SFG, I will look for a 6" variety or build up 1 square a little higher to allow more depth, like in the book.  We'll see.
I'm hoping the Linseed oil will prolong the life of the wood, which is expensive here (like everything it seems!). It's raw; so it's "uncooked" and therefore has no chemicals in it.  OK for organic gardening, so I read. Apparently it's what was used back in the day, before all those chemicals were invented to make wood more weather resistant.  Thanks again!
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/6/2017, 2:06 pm

@Nomadic1 wrote:No one is doing SFG here; so I'm flying blind in this sense.
No, you are leading the pack!!

They might need to water more heavily with their traditional gardens, even with the few synergy systems they use.  I'm counting on Mel's mix to hold the water it does get and give it back when needed.
That's the theory.  Does anyone use mulch on top of the beds in the summer?  I personally use bedding straw (cut into 4-6" sections) to cover the soil in the warm months.  It cools the soil and slows surface evaporation.  Other folks use pine needles, wood chips, etc.

I went that route as I was concerned about over-watering certain plants like tomatoes.
Tomatoes need lots of water.

It was suggested by a mgr there to raise the beds a bit and cut a drainage canal of sorts along the peripheral wire fence separating each garden plot to help drain water from heavy downpours. So the soil apparently drains poorly.
You shouldn't have to worry about drainage.  However, if your space happens to be a in low area with standing water, that is not good.  You can add native fill under your box to raise the grade and keep the bottom of the wood frames out of standing water.

We in fact already planned on raising the traditional rows a bit with a border.
You mean frame it in?  Add lots of compost?  Photos would help understand the layout better.  If I had a row garden, I would still frame in the areas to be planted so I wouldn't walk near the plants.  Like 3' x 8'.  Once a SF gardener, always a SF gardener.  Laughing

I'm hoping the Linseed oil . . . It's raw; so it's "uncooked" and therefore has no chemicals in it.  OK for organic gardening, so I read.
okay

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mulch et al

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/6/2017, 2:49 pm

Many people use hay they buy from the guy that manages the site.  They put it down early, (ie it's already covered) though I mostly see it on the synergy sites.  I can get tons of dried pine needles for nothing but the time it takes me to rake them up in a nearby forest of tall pines.  Though I imagine less risk of weed seeds with hay.  Since I'll have 2 boxes, I might try both and see how it goes.

As far as tomatoes needing lots of water, that's what I thought.  Lit says deep water (6-8") "when they need it", not a regular watering.  They get the latter with a timer; so I want to water lightly and find some middle ground.

I'll try to post some pic links of the  garden site this WE. Coming soon in any case!

I Googled about your "worm towers".  I saw many crawlers turning over the ground.  When I plant the traditional garden I'll grab those I see and put them into the SFG boxes as I plan to assemble those 1st.  I might add the towers in the near future though.  Give the folks a condo/buffet to hang out in!  Laughing
Thanks!
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/6/2017, 5:13 pm

Original design created by an early member, Josh, a teenager at the time!  When you open the link, it should go to page 19.  You can read all 20 pages when you have time.  Pages 19 and 20 are sufficient to understand what they are all about.  Worms eat bacteria, primarily, plus fungi, nematodes, protozoa and teeny bites organic matter.   What you put in the tube has to support this type of micro life.  http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1603p450-worm-tube-for-the-sfg?highlight=worm

Bedding straw, not "hay".  Bedding straw is from wheat stalks after the wheat heads have been harvested.  Hay is the nutritious stuff fed to the farm animals, like oat hay or alfalfa hay.

With SFG, you can ignore some of the conventional literature.  Very Happy

A good book to read in your spare time Razz  is "Teaming with Microbes" by Lowenfels and Lewis.  Fascinating look into what goes on underground that allows plant life to thrive.

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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/7/2017, 2:32 pm

As always, thanks for the advice.
I think they are actually using bedding straw, but will verify and decide whether to go with the straw or the free pine needles.  To be decided.  I'm just eager to get plants in and it doesn't look like that's happening this WE either.  We'll see.  Getting there though! Smile
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/7/2017, 4:31 pm

Here is something to help you decide. It's most likely bedding straw, useless except for bedding and mulch. The forest uses the pine needles as part of its living cycle. Wink

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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/8/2017, 2:31 am

Cool As always, priceless advice! 
Thank you!  Have a great WE!!
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/11/2017, 1:08 pm

Today I bought the remaining hose, coupling fixtures and assorted thingies I still needed for the watering.  Plus wood lathe for the box grids, which I already cut down to 1 meter and slapped a single coat of linseed oil on for good measure.

I took a look at the PVC they have available here. They have an orange colored one that's properly rigid but aside from the color it's only in bigger sizes.
The white tubing they have (I asked and they said it PVC despite it's description as electrical tubing & yes, they put electric wiring in plastic here).  The white tubing has much more play in it which makes me wonder if it's good enough for the "cups" and framing.
And it looks like instead of the 1" and 1/2" PVC tubing (that you use), I might have to go with about 3/4" (.78 of an inch = 20mm) and I think a bit larger than 1/2" tubing (I'll have to measure it again).  They don't seem to have the 1" size here.  Otherwise I need to bump up the "cup" tube to like 2" (only in orange at the store!) and then use the 1" inside that (I figure 3/4" might rattle around too much in the breeze).  I'm worried there might be to much flex in the smaller 3/4" here to serve as a "cup"?  I mean you're using 1", would you use 3/4" in its' place?  I will check another store tomorrow in any case to try to find 1".

Initially I want to use the frame for tomatoes. I will figure a way to attach wide netting to hang plants up on as they grow. 
Is that how you do it?
Also, your "cups" seem to rise about 6" after clearing the box frame.  Correct?

Lastly, how high do you go on your vertical 1/2" posts?  Looks like about 2 feet in the pics.

Thank you!!!
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/11/2017, 4:37 pm

@Nomadic1 wrote:I took a look at the PVC they have available here. They have an orange colored one that's properly rigid but aside from the color it's only in bigger sizes.
The white tubing they have (I asked and they said it PVC despite it's description as electrical tubing & yes, they put electric wiring in plastic here).  The white tubing has much more play in it which makes me wonder if it's good enough for the "cups" and framing.
And it looks like instead of the 1" and 1/2" PVC tubing (that you use), I might have to go with about 3/4" (.78 of an inch = 20mm) and I think a bit larger than 1/2" tubing (I'll have to measure it again).  They don't seem to have the 1" size here.  Otherwise I need to bump up the "cup" tube to like 2" (only in orange at the store!) and then use the 1" inside that (I figure 3/4" might rattle around too much in the breeze).  I'm worried there might be to much flex in the smaller 3/4" here to serve as a "cup"?  I mean you're using 1", would you use 3/4" in its' place?  I will check another store tomorrow in any case to try to find 1".
This is a photo I just took of a 1/2" PVC frame fitted in a heavy thick 1" PVC cup holder.  Not much rattling.  The cheaper schedule 1" let the 1/2" frame pieces rattle more than which I was comfortable.  I walked around with pieces of PVC until I found that heavy 1" was a nice fit for Schedule 40 1/2" PVC.  Trial and error.


Initially I want to use the frame for tomatoes. I will figure a way to attach wide netting to hang plants up on as they grow.  Is that how you do it?
at this time I use overhead string or garden tape to hold them upright.  I'm considering wrapping the bed with nylon trellis netting.  I may try it on one side to see if I works better than the strings.  Last year's tomatoes with green plastic tape over head support.

Also, your "cups" seem to rise about 6" after clearing the box frame.  Correct?
Only 3.5"  Some of my boxes have 2 layers of 2" x 4" (net 7") and others three layers of 2" x 4" (net 10 1/2").  The MM is only a max of 7" regardless of the height of the boxes.  That's why all the cup holders are 10 1/2".  The extra height on some boxes was my attempt to make the boxes prettier.   Embarassed   Also, I thought I would use top hat frames for longer root veggie but found that there are shorter varieties of carrots and parsnips so

Lastly, how high do you go on your vertical 1/2" posts?  Looks like about 2 feet in the pics.
5 - 5.5'  Any higher, and I use 1/2" metal EMC/EMT (electrical) for the frame.  Yes, we also have a PVC electrical tubing in addition to the metal.  I use 3-way (not a Tee) to secure the corners at the top, then use string as tension wire to keep them from pulling apart in the wind.

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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/12/2017, 12:15 am

Thank you, thank you, thank you!  Making a note of your measurements and heading to another hw store or 2 today to see if I can find adequate PVC.
Wish me luck.
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  AtlantaMarie on 4/12/2017, 8:28 am

Can't wait to see how it all comes together for you.....
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/12/2017, 2:28 pm

@AtlantaMarie wrote:Can't wait to see how it all comes together for you.....
Me too! Can't wait for the photos of this journey.

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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/20/2017, 3:11 am

I hope everyone who observes Easter had a good one, I was out of town for a couple of days before & after as Easter Monday is a holiday here in Italy as well.  We went up into the mountains (where that other family  orto/garden space I'd considered using is located!). I took a couple of pics of that I might post separately so as not to confuse with the primary Rome garden.  I did do some work up there in any case, trimming back raspberry vines, watering fruit trees et al.

Without further ado, some pictures of the Rome SFG/SMG.  Not much to look at yet, but you can see what I have to work with, and the progress thus far.... meager though it seems!



The beginning, they cut the grass/weeds down for me to begin, which was a blessing. Note the umbrella pines in the background, there are protected forests of these in areas..



Note the lavender bush at the left. I'm going to tie it into a tighter bundle and or cut it back a bit as it hasn't been maintained, for a few years at least.



In the background you can see the bordering wooden posts that have fencing mounted on the back in this case. Just beyond is a small path running along the fence for access to those garden plots behind (another row) and you can see some containers in the one behind mine.  Also note the Synergy mounds in the garden to the left.


Some of the first composite stone or more likely granite tiles I uncovered (I need to clean them up more) that were buried a good 3-4 inches down. They were a path that someone laid some time ago and I'll reuse for part of a path. My foot in there for scale!


This is where I left off before Easter. The 2 Square Meter garden boxes will go in the back, side by side, 1 to the right of the stick you see in the back in the right and the other to the left on the other side of the path. I think there were like 135 tiles in the end! This is it weeded and I turned in organic fertilizer pellets in what will be the foreground/standard garden spaces. 10 x 5 meter space.


I have to take some pics of the boxes I made and post them after.  They're in the garage for now.
I did manage to FINALLY find the plastic tubing I will use for the frames before going away!  Very Happy 
I need to figure out how to best mount them to the insides.  And since my boxes are on the ground, I'll probably put something hard/flat beneath/between the "cups" and the weed cover so as not to cause any holes due to abrasion/pressure which would allow weeds thru.I'm not sure I trust whatever I use to suspend the "cups" off the ground permanently and besides, the inside frames slide in and they will undoubtedly move about a bit/abrade the cloth beneath over time.
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/20/2017, 4:19 am

@Nomadic1 wrote:
Note the lavender bush at the left. I'm going to tie it into a tighter bundle and or cut it back a bit as it hasn't been maintained, for a few years at least.
I've read to prune no more than 1/3 of the bush.  Maybe for now, just cut off a few of the outer branches.  Bees love lavender.

I have to take some pics of the boxes I made and post them after.  They're in the garage for now.
Looking forward to them.

I need to figure out how to best mount them to the insides.  And since my boxes are on the ground, I'll probably put something hard/flat beneath/between the "cups" and the weed cover so as not to cause any holes due to abrasion/pressure which would allow weeds thru.  I'm not sure I trust whatever I use to suspend the "cups" off the ground permanently and besides, the inside frames slide in and they will undoubtedly move about a bit/abrade the cloth beneath over time.
What about using some of those free tiles between the weed cloth and "cups"?  The rest can go over a piece of weed cloth to make a surface on which to set your tool bucket, purse, seed packet container, etc.

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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/20/2017, 9:55 am

Here's the boxes, a quick pic

I'm going to try to tack on the bottom screens today and maybe the slug/snail fence wiring.  I will tack the weed fabric into place on site as I want to be able to see everything is properly level inside and then throw some dirt into/onto the screen to separate it slightly from the weed cloth, so any animals don't have a chance to gnaw holes into it as is might be possible if it's in contact with and slightly bulging through the wire screen.

Thanks for the suggestion/advice about the tiles & lavender.  I'd read something similar about the latter, to never cut past/all of the green area, leaving only the brown, lower stem as it probably won't grow back. Getting there.
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/20/2017, 1:52 pm

If you put in a little dirt, it may include seeds.  Just thinking.

Beautiful boxes and grids.  Very Happy  Who knows?  You may revolutionize this community garden. Wink

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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  Nomadic1 on 4/20/2017, 11:42 pm

No no weed seeds will get in. Sorry I didn't explain well enough.  Box goes in with animal screen in place, then I throw dirt in covering the screen a little and then I tack the weed fabric into place and finally fill the boxes with Mel's Mix.  Again, I'll do it this way so (coming up from the bottom) any animal trying to dig through or bite the screen will not get near the weed barrier which is behind the wire mesh screen, as it'll have the bit of soil before the weed barrier (and then Mel's Mix).  Think of lasagna layering.  Laughing    OMG, I think I've been here too long! Wink
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Re: Nomadic’s Diary - An Italian SFG Orto/Vegetable Garden

Post  sanderson on 4/21/2017, 2:36 am

Razz

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