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1st Year SFG with Super Plant Fail

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1st Year SFG with Super Plant Fail

Post  deblacy56 on 7/9/2017, 11:16 pm

Hello All!
I was so excited to start my 3 4x4 SFG's this spring--unfortunately, the veggies I have put in (tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers) have just sat there, and basically have not grown at all.  In particular the cuc's and pepper plants. My marigolds are flourishing and the zinnias are starting to pick up a bit.  I am assuming it has something to do with my mix.  I followed Mel's recipe --but I confess I didn't use compost from 5 different sources--because we have a really good local composting company here in town and I thought it would be better to use what I know than purchasing whatever was available at Lowes and Home Depot.  

So can I save my plants?  Seed new cucumbers?  What do I do in the fall to fix my cruddy compost problem?  

Thanks for your help!


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Re: 1st Year SFG with Super Plant Fail

Post  AtlantaMarie on 7/10/2017, 6:45 am

Hi DebLacy56. I'm Marie from Atlanta, GA. Welcome!

It's not unusual for 1st year SFG's to not do well... I would be very curious to look at specifics in your local compost. Your plants sound like high feeders. And that's probably the issue...

Also the weather. I didn't see where you're from. (Wasn't paying attention. Sorry.) Can you give us some specifics?

Also, when did you plant?

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Re: 1st Year SFG with Super Plant Fail

Post  BeetlesPerSqFt on 7/10/2017, 7:48 am

Hi Deb! If your composting company is really good you should be able to get an analysis report from them on their compost, giving the pH, soluble salts, organic matter, nitrogen, etc. Do you have, or can you get that from them? Since your compost is single source, you can use the analysis report as a stand-in for a soil-test (well, technically a soil-free media test since MM isn't soil.)

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Re: 1st Year SFG with Super Plant Fail

Post  trolleydriver on 7/10/2017, 7:56 am

Deb, this is my 3rd year of SFG and my cukes and peppers are not doing very well at all. I have some of them in SFG beds that have already had two summers of use, some in an SFG bed that is first year and others in beds that are old style (amended soil) SFG. I even make my own compost. The problem this year for my peppers and cukes seems to be weather related. We have had a very high percentage of cloudy, rainy and cool days. I think we had a stretch of about 18 days in a row where we had at least one rain shower and more often torrential downpours during each of those days.


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Post  deblacy56 on 7/10/2017, 9:49 am

Thanks for your all your responses! --I'm from Missouri, and we've had a pretty decent summer, good amount of rain, and I've watered in between.

I planted about mid-may.

I just sent an email to the composting company requesting the analysis --I'll let you know what I find out from that.

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Re: 1st Year SFG with Super Plant Fail

Post  sanderson on 7/10/2017, 10:38 pm

Deb,  Welcome to the Forum from California!  glad you\'re here  Another question you can ask the company is what material they use for composting.   Yard waste, wood chips?  Any produce waste or animal manure?  Let us know what the company responds. If you think it is a nutrient problem, you can always add per instructions some Organic slow release fertilizer such as Espoma Garden-tone.

When you find out what materials they use, you can browse this thread for other sources, such as manure, sea weed/kelp, crab shells and veggie based bags.  http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t21089-recommended-store-bought-compost?highlight=compost


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