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First Time SF Gardener

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First Time SF Gardener

Post  countrymuzluvr on 1/26/2011, 2:42 pm

I am doing a project with my Brownie troop here in Pinellas County. I have read the new book many times but there are vegetables in it that don't get any mention. The girls and I are looking to plant some hot peppers; jalapeno, poblano, and habenero. I was wondering if these plants need the same amount of space as bell peppers. Are they invasive like mint and horseradish? Does the "flavor" leach into the soil?

We are also planning a pizza party to coincide with out harvest. This includes making pizza sauce, cutting vegetables, and making our own sausage and cheese. To do this we need to grow some herbs that aren't listed in the book, including rosemary, sage, tarragon, thyme, garlic, and marjoram.

Another project we are going to do is pickle cucumbers. We would like to use fresh dill but i am unsure how much space a dill plant needs.

If anyone could tell me the spacing required for these plants I and my troop would be very gratefull.
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  Furbalsmom on 1/26/2011, 3:35 pm

@countrymuzluvr wrote:I am doing a project with my Brownie troop here in Pinellas County. I have read the new book many times but there are vegetables in it that don't get any mention. The girls and I are looking to plant some hot peppers; jalapeno, poblano, and habenero. I was wondering if these plants need the same amount of space as bell peppers. Are they invasive like mint and horseradish? Does the "flavor" leach into the soil?

We are also planning a pizza party to coincide with out harvest. This includes making pizza sauce, cutting vegetables, and making our own sausage and cheese. To do this we need to grow some herbs that aren't listed in the book, including rosemary, sage, tarragon, thyme, garlic, and marjoram.

Another project we are going to do is pickle cucumbers. We would like to use fresh dill but i am unsure how much space a dill plant needs.

If anyone could tell me the spacing required for these plants I and my troop would be very gratefull.

While looking at seed catalogs, the spacing for hot type peppers such as jalapeno and habenero is the same as for a sweet bell pepper.

Since peppers are annuals, and do not self seed readily, they would not be invasive. I've never heard of the flavor "Leaching" into the soil.

The following is a link to UFL Extension Service with herb growing information specific to FL.
FL Herbs
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  countrymuzluvr on 1/26/2011, 3:39 pm

What I meant by "leaching" is that when my parents grew hot peppers next to their green peppers and tomatoes, the heat from the jalapeno plant would start making the sweet peppers and tomatoes taste hot.
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  sfg4uKim on 1/26/2011, 3:47 pm

There are just too many varieties of peppers you mentioned - some grow in hot moist areas and others in dryer climates. I guess I would find the varieties you intend to grow and look at a site that sells seeds. Then use the "thin to" information and follow the book's recommendations.
Reimerseeds.com has a hot pepper growing tips area. They also have great growing instructions for your herbs.
http://reimerseeds.com/HotPepperGrowingTips.aspx
They even have a video
http://reimerseeds.com/PepperPlantingInstructions.aspx
Hot peppers require a lot of airflow, so make sure what you plant around it is low enough to allow for it.

As a former Cub/Boy Scout leader, and former Brownie, I salute you.

Let us know how it goes!

Kim in Maryland

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I have seen women looking at jewelry ads with a misty eye and one hand resting on the heart, and I only know what they're feeling because that's how I read the seed catalogs in January - Barbara Kingsolver - Animal, Vegetable, Miracle


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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  acara on 1/26/2011, 5:09 pm

I've heard that story concerning peppers too & *IMHO* ... it's just a story. It's more likely a successive generation issue from cross-polination in the first/previous crop (happens with tomatoes, corn, etc). I've grown mixed varieties in the same container for years & never experienced any "leaching" between varieties of peppers.

However, successive plantings in the same container/location over time will give you some intersting surprises sometimes.

As far as the dill spacing, I wouldn't put more than 1 per square. You can plant more than that, but I find having 360-degree access around the plant makes it much easier to harvest it on a "as-needed" basis. I also usually keep my dill (and all my herbs/spices) in dedicated containers ... since a lot of them seem to be invasive and/or go to seed easily & don't stay where you initially planted them.

Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon, Thyme, Basil .... all do great down here. Basil will get away from you (if unkept) in our zone though ...so I'd suggest a separate container/square for that. Keep the basil pinched & the plant "boxy" and it should fill out the entire square/container nicely, without getting tall/scraggly/woody/spindly.

Also, if you can find "nested" containers (or dedicated small SFG box), it makes it easy to do multiple herbs in the same small footprint, without them being as invasive (as planted in the ground & allowed to sprawl);



Oregano, Basil, Rosemary, German Oregano ... all in a 12" square footprint, using 6" nested pots.
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  quiltbea on 1/27/2011, 12:15 am

acara.....I love your herb pot setup.
I'm thinking of increasing my varieties of herbs this year and am looking for ways to do it. I've been reading that putting them in pots, even if you bury them in the bed so they take less watering, is a good way to go so you can lift the pot and bring it inside for the winter.
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  kimbertangleknot on 1/27/2011, 12:20 am

@quiltbea wrote:acara.....I love your herb pot setup.
I'm thinking of increasing my varieties of herbs this year and am looking for ways to do it. I've been reading that putting them in pots, even if you bury them in the bed so they take less watering, is a good way to go so you can lift the pot and bring it inside for the winter.

I read that too. But if your going to have pots... why not just let them out and plant something else in that useful square? More tomatoes!!!
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  middlemamma on 1/27/2011, 2:00 am

Acara I love the pots as well...I see a copycat in my future. affraid
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welcome

Post  ander217 on 1/27/2011, 7:33 am

Welcome to the forum, Countrymuzluvr. I think it's great that you are teaching the next generation about foods and gardening. I used to lead 4-H cooking classes and there was never a dull moment with kids in the kitchen.

Regarding dill, check out the available varieties. Some grow only about 18" tall while others, such as Long Island Mammoth, can grow to over five feet. There are many ranging in between those. Dill will readily reseed itself, so unless you snip the heads before the seeds shatter it will keep coming up. That's a good thing if you want to dedicate some squares to it permanently, but it's a bad thing if the seeds drop into unplanned squares. I would recommend allowing a few umbrels to dry and collecting the seeds before they drop and replant them by hand, or else build a small box and isolate it from the rest of your boxes and keep it just for dill. I plan to do that this year.

Keep us posted on your new projects and remember that we love photos.

glad you\'re here
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  acara on 1/27/2011, 7:34 am

Thanks guys.

The pots come in terracota & are standard fare at Home Depot.

They are easy to seal/paint (if you have to appease the HOA nazi's, like I do). A cheaper solution is to bolt, fasten or hot glue 4 pots of the same size together. You can also just attach the bottoms to a 12" flat sqaure of material ....so you can just pickthem up and transport as needed (make sure you drill the drain holes in the sides, if you are using containers & attaching them to a flat surface).

Another cool way to do this is to use 4" PVC pipe or 6" drain pipe. Cut the pipe to different heights (and cut one end at a 45 or 60-degree angle). once you mount the individual pipes to a mounting surface, you end up withsomething that kinda resembles the top of a organ pipe chamber/stack.

Save a lot of space and keeps the herbs separated/contained...plus the PVC last a long time. at the end of the season, just flip over & dump the old stuff, then start planting again.
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  quiltbea on 1/27/2011, 12:00 pm

Kimber....The reason to bury the pots is so there is less watering needed. When they are not buried, they get too hot and dry from the sun and need watering sometimes twice a day.
In the ground, they don't lose the moisture as fast so require less watering.
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Re: First Time SF Gardener

Post  kimbertangleknot on 1/27/2011, 12:04 pm

Ahh. Never knew that. Makes more sense now why people would bury a pot.
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