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Worst Garden in YEARS!

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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

Post  jeboo on 6/11/2010, 2:44 pm

Hey Tim,

I live very near you in The Colony and I have been fighting off the dreaded squash borer. I have been removing the eggs by hand every day and have found that spraying BT has really helped. The only reason I even knew to watch for for the dang things was because I had read your postings on the subject. This is my first veggie garden and so far so good because of your advice. I know this doesn't help your garden but I just wanted you to know that you have really helped mine. I really appreciate it. Don't give up!!!!
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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

Post  ralitaco on 6/15/2010, 12:45 am

Tim, please don't take this the wrong way or be offended, but...I have to tell you, I am sure glad to hear about your troubles. Not because I have anything against you, but because my garden sounds like it is in similar shape as yours and you are the SFG MAN.
This is my first year at SFG and only my second time trying any kind of garden. I was really about ready to throw in the towel today.
I had success with lettuce too, and my jalepenos, cukes and oregano are coming in great. The rosemary and cilantro transplants did fine. Right now my eggplant appears fine.
On the other hand, my broc and cauli were destroyed by worms (cabbage worms I think). I have end rot on my 2 tomato plants and apparently on my zucchini. my zucchini is a whole other story (I'll add that fiasco later) I met the dreaded hornworm. my onions and carrots are so so tiny. my strawberries are all straw, well the few berries that come up are apparently squirrel bait. my bell peppers never grew. my basil has had the same 6 leaves. 2 of my 4 butterbeans came up but aren't really growing.
Yeah ZUCCHINI...Mistake 1: I thought it was 1 vine per square, actually is per 2 squares. Mistake 2: its a bush not a vine. Mistake 3: as a result of #2, the leaves cover about 3/4 of a square foot. strange measurement, right...well I only have 4 of my 16 onions coming up b/c of the killer zucchini. fortunately, the z is on the outer edge and the tom and cuke were tall enough when the leaves came in.

I was not and am not trying to be organic, but I didn't want to use loads of chemicals on my food. I tried some pseudo organic ortho pesticide, I think it helped w/ the hornworms, but not the cabbage worms. After having my plants decimated I broke down and bought sevin. before I put it on, I read the package and it pretty much says it will kill everything that it touches. My neighbor has honey bees...scratch that while the plants are in bloom. I plan to treat with sevin in the fall.

In my desperation I head off to the local organic gardening center. I am going to try neem oil as many people on here say it's the bees knees. while there, I pick up some calcium supplement, worm poop and some supposedly super concentrated mega organic compost. (I plan to test by using some in one box) If I had a jug, I could have gotten some free compost tea, too.

anyway, even though you are having a time of it, it is still encouraging to read about your problems. I was starting to think it was just me.
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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

Post  ralitaco on 6/15/2010, 12:46 am

Oh I forgot to ask: Now that I have about 1/2 my squares empty, what are some good crops to plant now?
Thanks,
Jim
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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

Post  timwardell on 6/15/2010, 9:37 am

@ ralitaco - Thanks, I guess. Glad to know that my efforts can at least serve as a warning sign to others. Smile
No, it's not just you. Some years are better than others. Some years you can do no wrong and some years nothing you do makes much difference. SFG is not a cure all. It doesn't magically make pest, or fungus problems, or bugs disappear from a garden. It simply makes having a successful garden much easier. As bad as things might be in my garden this year, they could be far worse and MUCH more work if I had a row garden. ... I've been fighting what I thought was tomato blight to no avail only to find out yesterday that I probably have a MITE problem (see: http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/lower-south-f10/mites-yet-another-pest-to-deal-with-t2873.htm#21126). I've NEVER had mites. Sheesh. It's always something.

As far as replacement crops I'd suggest anything that is fast growing since the summer is well under way. If you want pumpkins for Halloween you could put seed in the ground now - so long as they have a trellis or room to spill out and crawl. (They don't bush!)

Best of luck. Hope your garden goes better than mine.
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So sorry to hear about the garden . . .

Post  alouwomack on 6/15/2010, 1:04 pm

Hi Tim,

Sorry to hear about the devestation you've experienced! I'm in Fort Worth and so far I haven't had any problems with the SVB (yet)! "Knock hard on wood!!!"

I was wondering if you've ever used Spinosad? I read about a fellow gardener using Spinosad in a syringe/needle and injecting it into the hollow part of the squash plants to keep the SVB from killing her plants. I tried it too and I think it might be the trick for me! I injected it about a month ago and haven't seen any signs of distress or boring. I recommended it to a friend over a week ago for her dying pumpkin and she says its recovering . . .

-Amber

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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

Post  dixie on 6/15/2010, 3:35 pm

Tim, I really hate you are having such problems, especially after all the encouragement you have given me and other newbies to SFG. Hopefully your growing season will allow you to plant something else.
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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

Post  CPN on 6/15/2010, 5:16 pm

I too am sorry you are having problems. I can feel your pain with all the hard work you do and then for something to just come along and destroy it over night. IT just sucks! I lost my one and only squash plant yesterday and right after I got my first squash off of it. Walked out the next morning and it was laying over dead. Squash vine borer I guess..... So I hear you. Personally, I was trying to not put any chemicals on my SFG with the exceptional of mild insecticidal soap. BUT, I got up this morning and sprayed down everything with Sevin. I am just not sure how people do it in the humid south with all the bugs and diseases we seem to get. Especially if you have a small plot and cant stand to loose one plant. Good luck to all!

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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

Post  Shoda on 6/15/2010, 5:28 pm

Tim,

I just read about your troubles. I am so sorry! Hang in there... it has to get better, no?

I mentioned to my neighbor about the bugs in my garden this year and she told me it was because my plants had too much nutrition from the Mel's Mix. I never heard of that and I don't really believe it but maybe they do like the well fed plants. Personally, I am not going to go back to soil just to get rid of the bugs.

We all are challenged this year. In California it has been wetter and cooler then usual so we are seeing more bugs, more mold, mildew, etc... Could it be a similar situation where you are?

Hugs

P.S. My neighbor did finally admit she also had more bugs this year after she put down my garden. Go figger!
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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

Post  jenjehle on 6/15/2010, 10:58 pm

@alouwomack wrote:Hi Tim,

I was wondering if you've ever used Spinosad? I read about a fellow gardener using Spinosad in a syringe/needle and injecting it into the hollow part of the squash plants to keep the SVB from killing her plants. I tried it too and I think it might be the trick for me! I injected it about a month ago and haven't seen any signs of distress or boring. I recommended it to a friend over a week ago for her dying pumpkin and she says its recovering . . .

-Amber

Just thought I'd chime in here... the Horticultural Educator at our local Extension Office recommends Spinosad a lot. He answers questions on a call in program on our local NPR station and I hear him mention Spinosad to many people. Personally, I don't have any info about it but just thought I'd second the fact that it does come highly recommended! Our Horticultural Educator is the smartest guy about gardening! Seriously, this guy knows about everything!
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Spinosad

Post  ander217 on 6/16/2010, 7:23 am

Spinosad also kills honeybees, trichogramma and brachonid wasps, so please be careful where and how you use it. For bee protection do not spray on flowers, and spray very early so it will dry before bees come in contact with it - at least three to four hours before bees become active. It pretty much kills trichogramma wasps and braconids any time.

At least it's supposed to be okay for lacewings and ladybugs.
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Re: Worst Garden in YEARS!

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