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A few SFG tips & thoughts...

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A few SFG tips & thoughts...

Post  pattipan on 11/17/2010, 12:12 am

@bettyd_z7_va wrote:Pattipan,

I went to the avatar link this morning and saw that beautiful garden picture you posted there. I believe it when you say you were busy picking produce!

And you can't blame the bugs! I would have been at that buffet eating, too if I had been a bug!

It's raining here and I can't get outside to play, so I'm catching up on the posts here and trying to inhale knowledge for later use. It seems you have a lot of secrets for success with a garden like yours. Would you share your tips with a first timer?


Betty asked in another thread if I had any SFG secrets or tips. First, thank you, Betty for the nice comments. Honestly, I have not done anything special, other than read the book and glean tips from others on this forum! I try some things -- some work and some don't.

I've been SFG'ing now for about 6+ years?, but I grew up in a gardening family. Notice that my tomatoes are still in "rows," albeit they are in a box with Mel's Mix. I think that comes from years of row gardening! But I grow tomatoes for canning as well for eating, so for me I plan my SFG around my tomatoes. I grew the peppers I needed to make my salsa. I canned spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce, tomato soup..and canned/froze tomatoes (plain and roasted).

All my boxes are 6" deep (actually less than, due to the way lumber is cut). I follow Mel's formula as closely as possible, because it works. Sometimes we can't find five composts, but I try to make sure one or more is a good mix (i.e. compost+manure, humus mix with lots of composted ingredients, etc.). I've been lucky to always find a leaf or mushroom compost to add to the mix. I'm not that far from you, so we had the drought and hot temperatures this summer too. I mulched the tomatoes and peppers heavily with straw, but still had to water every other day.

So the big pattipan tips (FWIW) are:
  • Read Mel's, All New SFG'ing twice...and refer to it often
  • Get a copy of his older SFG book if you can - lots of good info on individual veggies
  • Water regularly
  • Mulch when it's hot
  • Plant a veggie you've never grown before
  • Make mistakes, learn from them
  • If you have a question about bugs or disease in the garden, the Internet is a great resource!
  • Find a good SFG forum (you've already done that!)

I'm sure there are things I left out, but it's midnight now and I'd better get to bed!


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Re: A few SFG tips & thoughts...

Post  Blackrose on 11/17/2010, 9:49 am

Great tips pattipan! All of us could learn from them. I know I will! My first year of SFG did not go well at all. I blame the location (not enough sun) and my mix (only 3 types of compost). In the spring, I will be moving my TT's to a sunnier location and I have found a great garden centre about 45 minutes from me where I know I can get a better variety of compost.

Tip #2 is a good one. I personally have not read Mel's first book. I may go to the library and see if I can check it out.


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