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2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

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2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 1/16/2017, 10:28 pm

HELLO SFG FRIENDS!!!!!
I hope everyone is doing well.


2017 New Year's Garden Resolutions: 
Start 2017 Post on Forum - ✔
Start Plants from Seeds - 
Become a "Hottie" - 
Build more Boxes - 
Visit the SFG Forum weekly - 
Dry & Use the Herbs - 
Collect Seeds - 

We'll see how well I do with the list, but at least I got 1 of them checked off.
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  AtlantaMarie on 1/17/2017, 6:41 am

Hi sweetie! Welcome home! Glad to see you...
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 1/17/2017, 2:06 pm

Ralitaco is back!! Missed you. happy hi

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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 1/17/2017, 6:06 pm

Thank you both. I am trying to get a jump on the next season, especially since it looks like my last season is done...well except maybe for the onions, garlic and carrots, but I don't know how to tell. 

I still have some broccoli and cabbage that are green, but I think since they are uncovered they are not growing and should probably be pulled out. I have never tried to grow anything in the fall so I am really lost. 

I am kicking myself for not making a cold frame or at least covering the beds with plastic. I need to add that to my list of things to do in 2017. I figure I should be able to craft something pretty easily since my beds have those vertical posts.
I am guessing that even if I cover the beds, I will be losing most, if not all, of the heat out the bottoms since I am doing the table tops, but I think I may have a solution for that. I was thinking I could rake my leaves into black trash bags and pack them in under the beds. Then I would have a lot less air space below the beds. Plus I would have leaves decomposing in the bags for future use as compost. AND in theory, they might put off a bit of heat...at least, the black bags would absorb the heat and slowly release it...sounds good to me but what do I know.

Enough looking back...time to look forward
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 1/17/2017, 8:03 pm

RT, There's no need to pull the broccoli and cabbage until you need the squares for summer crops, or they die. Nothing really "grows" in January in our lats because of the lack of sun hours. If something survives the cold, it will pick up soon. Most of my beds are Table Tops and this winter I didn't cover them with plastic against the mild freeze. Last year I did and added old fashion Christmas lights. That meant I had to uncover them in the morning or I'd have had steamed cabbage, etc. In you area, plastic will be fine, you don't need to insulate the air space underneath.

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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  Scorpio Rising on 1/17/2017, 9:24 pm

happy hi Yo, RT!  Missed ya!  Glad you are back, and sounds like a plan!
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 1/17/2017, 10:31 pm

Thanks Sanderson. Not having to insulate underneath will make my DW happy.

Missed you too Scorpio.
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 1/17/2017, 11:23 pm

Between the last time I was on here and now, we had 8 trees removed in our back yard. Their removal may not give me much more sunlight in the yard because there were still other tall trees behind the ones we cut down. However, removing those trees definitely gave me more room for more boxes towards the back of the yard. It also opened up the side yard for a multitude of options. 

Here is the view of my beds from the house at different times of the year
BEFORE:

05-14-2015 8:15am

05-29-2015 9:19am

03-27-2016 9:42am

Here is the view AFTER 2 large trees were cut down between the beds and the back fence:

10-24-2016 2:05pm
It may not look very different in this photo but I am hoping it will make a difference.

Here is a different angle from behind the beds.
BEFORE:
10-24-2016 8:28am


AFTER:
10-24-2016 1:58pm


Here is the side yard.
BEFORE:

05-13-2015 9:33am
The trees on the Left side of the bed in the photo above are the trees on the Right side of the picture below (with the white ribbons).

10-24-2016 8:29am

AFTER:
10-24-2016 6:20pm
In one of the photos above, you can see the shadows they cast on the bed.

Hopefully in a few months I will be posting photos of the stumps gone and more beds being added.
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New Avatar

Post  ralitaco on 2/2/2017, 5:24 pm

Here is my new avatar.
It appears I have a sci-fi addiction

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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  countrynaturals on 2/2/2017, 6:07 pm

WOW!
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 2/3/2017, 5:37 am

@countrynaturals wrote:WOW!
+1 Very Happy

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Praxxus Seeds

Post  ralitaco on 2/3/2017, 9:17 pm

Woohoo!!! got my FREE seeds from Praxxus today. 
There are Buttercrunch Lettuce, Poblano Peppers, and Rapunzel tomatoes.

So the question is when should I start them?
Inside or outside?
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  yolos on 2/3/2017, 9:25 pm

I usually start my tomatoes about 6 weeks before the last frost date.  They don't really like to grow if the temps are  below 50*F but you can always use something to keep them from getting too cold.  I actually have some started now that already have their first true leaves.  I plan to plant them about 2-4 weeks before my last frost date but plan on covering them heavily to keep them happy until it warms up enough.  Then plant a couple every two weeks to see what works best.  Experiment, experiment.

Can't help with peppers but I hear they take longer than tomatoes to get to their plant out date.
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 2/23/2017, 12:38 am

I know it's not "the" week for this, but I figured nobody would carrot-all if I posted a picture of my harvest from today...okay, actually it was my DW's harvest. Apparently she was out in the yard today (walking the dog is my guess) and decided to see if there was anything growing under those green stems...TADA!!!



That orange lovely is about 5x bigger than my last carrot. I have 3 squares that I planted in Sept/Oct. I was thinking I should wait until March/April to pull them up but I don't know if I should expect them to get any bigger.
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 3/3/2017, 8:03 pm

Ok, so I am copying what Jaffa55 did in his intro thread...I am posting some satellite images of my little plot of land. I don't know why but I just thought that was genius. It gives a bit of a different perspective of what I am working with.

Here is a view of my block in the neighborhood. 

Here I zoomed in on just my lot. The "X"s are for the trees I cut down this winter. You can barely see my 4x4 TT in the image which has to be a couple of years old. (Note the compass in the upper Right Corner pointing North)

Thanks for the idea Jaffa!
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CARROT HARVEST!!!!

Post  ralitaco on 3/11/2017, 1:08 pm

Back on Sept/Oct, I planted 4 squares of carrots. 2 squares, 2 weeks apart. Unfortunately, I did not document which squares were planted when. Now I planted about 16 per square but did not get near that production. I got 6 good size carrots from 2 squares and so far 4 from the other 2 squares but there are about 8 more in there but they are rather small.

Regardless, I grew something over the winter and it looks like we are having carrots with dinner tonight!!!!

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Carrot Harvest!!!!

Post  newbeone on 3/12/2017, 12:32 pm

Looking Good!
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 3/12/2017, 2:13 pm

Thanks NB1.

I learned that the reason my freshly pulled carrots went limp and rubbery was because I left the tops on. Apparently the greens pull the moisture out of the carrot resulting in the bendable carrot.

With that new found knowledge, I cut off the carrot tops and made them into a chimichurri. And I plan to roast the carrots tonight with dinner.
https://www.loveandlemons.com/carrot-green-chimichurri/

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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  CapeCoddess on 3/12/2017, 3:50 pm

@ralitaco wrote:

I learned that the reason my freshly pulled carrots went limp and rubbery was because I left the tops on. Apparently the greens pull the moisture out of the carrot resulting in the bendable carrot.


This is very important info! Thank you!
I wonder if it holds true for any other veggies...beets perhaps?
CC
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 3/12/2017, 4:08 pm

@CapeCoddess wrote:This is very important info!  Thank you!
I wonder if it holds true for any other veggies...beets perhaps?
CC
No idea...I don't think I have eaten a beet ever. But, I would think the same principle would hold true. I googled it and it looks like you should cut off the beet greens so you can eat them.
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TT's in the Snow

Post  ralitaco on 3/12/2017, 4:25 pm

Here are a few pictures of my beds in the snow (excuse the messy yard):





Future "Cold" Slaw rofl
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  BeetlesPerSqFt on 3/12/2017, 6:27 pm

@ralitaco wrote:Future "Cold" Slaw  rofl
lol!
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  sanderson on 3/13/2017, 3:27 am

RT, Cold slaw Razz Did you or would you post the bird's eye view under "Bird's Eye View of Your Garden" so yours doesn't get buried. Those carrots look great!!

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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

Post  ralitaco on 3/13/2017, 9:45 am

@sanderson wrote:RT,  Cold slaw Razz   Did you or would you post the bird's eye view under "Bird's Eye View of Your Garden" so yours doesn't get buried.  Those carrots look great!!
Already posted it there.

And the carrots were yummy...so was the chimichurri I made from the carrot greens.
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Summer Squash vs. Winter Squash

Post  ralitaco on 3/15/2017, 11:47 pm

Last year I mistakenly thought that summer squash was planted to be harvested in the summer and winter squash was planted to be harvested in the winter...or there abouts.
What I think I learned was
1. Summer squash have thin skins and do not store for long. Whereas the winter squash have a hard rind that allow it to be stored over the winter.
2. Regardless of whether they are winter or summer squash, they are all planted about the same time.
3. Summer squash and zucchini are bush varieties and winter squash are vining


Questions:
A. Am I correct on this?
B. Did I miss anything?
C. Are there other summer squash varieties?
D. Are ALL winter squash vining?


This season, for my summer squash fix, I am planning to plant zucchini and yellow squash again.
Any thoughts on crookneck vs straight neck yellow?

For the winter squash, I am going to try the tromboncino again and since I just ate my first spaghetti squash, I think I will give them a try.
Any suggestions or thoughts there?

Last question: any suggestions for plant placement of these varieties? I am also wanting to plant tomato, eggplant, and peppers


I have 2 - 2x8's and 1 - 4x4. The beds run along a SE-NW line.

Sorry for the ramble and thanks in advance
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Re: 2017 SFG Adventures in Hampstead, NC

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