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Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

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Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  elliephant on 2/20/2011, 12:34 am

Most of my beds are only 2 feet wide because I want to maximize the amount of trellis space I have (and most of my boxes are up against fences) but I'm still having a hard time filling up the "front" squares. What can grow in the summer (our cool season is pretty much already over) without a trellis? I need more short plants Laughing Bush beans are about all I'm coming up with, but obviously I can't keep planting those over and over again in the front squares. I know I must be missing something :?: What else can I grow?


Last edited by elliephant on 2/20/2011, 12:35 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typo)

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  Furbalsmom on 2/20/2011, 2:23 am

The following are warm weather crops (other than bush beans) that do not need trellising.
beets
carrots
swiss chard
eggplant (may need some support)
peppers (may need some support)
parsley
basil

Will these grow well in your area?

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  Megan on 2/20/2011, 5:36 am

Last year my Swiss chard grew very well through the summer heat. My basil liked heat, too.

Also,

If you still have time: Lettuce, Broccoli raab, Kohlrabi, Mustard

Sweet potatoes (no trellis but uses space)
Cilantro
Leek
Dill (keep away from carrots)
Spring/green onion
Turnip / Rutabaga
Parsnip
Strawberry
Marigolds
Nasturtium
other flowers/herbs/pollinator attractors

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  elliephant on 2/21/2011, 8:51 am

@Furbalsmom wrote:The following are warm weather crops (other than bush beans) that do not need trellising.
beets
carrots
swiss chard
eggplant (may need some support)
peppers (may need some support)
parsley
basil

Will these grow well in your area?


I do have lots of peppers going...but they grew 4-5 feet tall for me last year, so I have to be careful where I put them. They are brittle and a bit difficult to work around in their cages. Mostly, I'm putting 9 of them together (different varieties) in a little square yard box I built on an obnoxious patch of grass next to the driveway/sidewalk out front.

Local sources all list beets, carrots, and eggplant as "fall" crops here :scratch: I'm going to try eggplant anyway, since the dates they give for planting it are smack in the middle of summer, so I don't see why I can't grow it now. It's free seed Baker Creek sent last year, anyway. I do have the little "Pariesenne" carrots they sent this year planted already, and will plant a square of Nantes on Tax Day just for the fun of going along with everyone.

I already have Swiss Chard that has overwintered. Will probably plant one more square. Was planning to plant basil in a pot, but maybe I'lll change that. Don't ever use parsley. Have cilantro planted, but local sources say that should be grown in the winter, too, so it may just bolt.

Still getting the hang of this area...froze 4 nights in a row 2 weeks ago, and it's supposed to be 89 today, 90 on Thursday. Lows in the mid 60s.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  elliephant on 2/21/2011, 8:57 am

@Megan wrote:Last year my Swiss chard grew very well through the summer heat. My basil liked heat, too.

Also,

If you still have time: Lettuce, Broccoli raab, Kohlrabi, Mustard

Sweet potatoes (no trellis but uses space)
Cilantro
Leek
Dill (keep away from carrots)
Spring/green onion
Turnip / Rutabaga
Parsnip
Strawberry
Marigolds
Nasturtium
other flowers/herbs/pollinator attractors

After you suggested lettuce I read through the descriptions of the varieties I picked from SESE and am going to try planting new squares as long as possible. I got some kinds that are really supposed to hold up. I was thinking the squares I have started right now would be the last, but might as well try!

I was really looking at leeks (have never tried, let alone planted) but everything seems to say those really need to be a fall crop here. Same goes for turnips.

Really, I think there are more things we can plant in the winter than in the summer here!

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  FarmerValerie on 2/21/2011, 9:26 am

New Zealand Spinach may be an option.
Basil is a great option, however watch it closely, mine has gone absolutely nuts the last 2 years, I had to keep it cut back, I just now found a good pesto recipe.
Oregano is another option.
Parsley did well here for me too, even if you don't use it much, it's nice to have, but I would dig up and re-do after 3 years, they can go wild.
If you like mint, you could try one of those, but put a border 6" deep in the ground, or just use a container on top of the ground, or insert it into the ground. My chocolate mint and spearmint love this climate.
There is also a slow bolt Cilantro out there, Baker Creek has it, it's called Cilantro, Slow-Bolt, easy enough.
Lemon Balm does great down here too, will need to be trimmed a bit, but smells good when you mess with it. Lemon Grass might be to tall for front boxes, but I know several people who grow it down here, just so they can swish it around with their hands, and then smell it when they are working in the garden.
Chives are another thought.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  walshevak on 2/21/2011, 9:43 am

You can patio tomatos and cukes. Patio size is made for containers and don't sprawl like the regular ones. Turnips for greens.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  Megan on 2/21/2011, 6:14 pm

@elliephant wrote:Local sources all list beets, carrots, and eggplant as "fall" crops here :scratch: I'm going to try eggplant anyway, since the dates they give for planting it are smack in the middle of summer, so I don't see why I can't grow it now. It's free seed Baker Creek sent last year, anyway. I do have the little "Pariesenne" carrots they sent this year planted already, and will plant a square of Nantes on Tax Day just for the fun of going along with everyone.

Carrots (and parsnips) take a LONG time to grow. Not sure how that translates to planting in Texas, though.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  FarmerValerie on 2/21/2011, 6:48 pm

Megan, I just put mine out, and I am late getting them out according to most places I have read and heard. I'm in NE TX, the last frost date is March 16 and Mel says I'm right on time. So, we shall see, they are from 2009 anyway, so I may only have the ones others are sending to me...... They were free from Baker's Creek anyway with an order, I just never got them in the ground and thought "What have I got to lose".

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  Megan on 2/21/2011, 7:00 pm

*grin* They're just seeds, so try it! Very Happy

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  elliephant on 2/22/2011, 8:45 am

@FarmerValerie wrote:New Zealand Spinach may be an option.
Basil is a great option, however watch it closely, mine has gone absolutely nuts the last 2 years, I had to keep it cut back, I just now found a good pesto recipe.
Oregano is another option.
Parsley did well here for me too, even if you don't use it much, it's nice to have, but I would dig up and re-do after 3 years, they can go wild.
If you like mint, you could try one of those, but put a border 6" deep in the ground, or just use a container on top of the ground, or insert it into the ground. My chocolate mint and spearmint love this climate.
There is also a slow bolt Cilantro out there, Baker Creek has it, it's called Cilantro, Slow-Bolt, easy enough.
Lemon Balm does great down here too, will need to be trimmed a bit, but smells good when you mess with it. Lemon Grass might be to tall for front boxes, but I know several people who grow it down here, just so they can swish it around with their hands, and then smell it when they are working in the garden.
Chives are another thought.

I thought New Zealand Spinach grew on a trellis? I was going to grow any perennial herbs in containers...I have a nice front patio that gets a good amount of shade, but still plenty of indirect sun. I really should get that slow bolt cilantro; I saw in in the catalog but had already gotten seeds from a local farmer's market, just kept forgetting to plant them all winter. Embarassed

Oh! I just looked out the window and saw that both my Poona Kheera and Poinsett 76 cucumbers came up overnight! Guess they liked the 94 degree day we had yesterday.sunny I love being able to see a couple of my bed so well from the computer desk. The rest I can see from the playroom (built as a sunroom), so that about covers the day. bounce

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  FarmerValerie on 2/22/2011, 9:13 am

It may very well vine, but aggressive clipping and pruning may help slow it. I'm hoping to get some in the ground very soon, and I'm going to put some in a spot where it can go, and a spot where I can experiment with keeping it clipped, what have I got to lose??? I've learned so much this year, most of it is just running around up there looking for a place to go. There are some slow bolt spinach, and some that are not actually spinach, that you can have all summer long.

Where I live I am putting a few trellis' on the South side of some of my boxes, to keep some herbs and cooler plants a bit longer, and give them some shade, they will still get 6-8 hours of sun, in spite of a trellis full of vines. I have a box in my "kitchen" garden that has Morning Glories going up it, and it shades about 2 1/2' of the box for parts of the day, I had lettuce in that spot until late May, which for here is good, I'm usually pulling it up in April. Our garden area is in full sun by 9AM in spring and summer, and exposed until 7PM (later in late summer) thats 10 hours of TX sun, way too much for some plants here.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  elliephant on 2/22/2011, 9:50 am

@FarmerValerie wrote:It may very well vine, but aggressive clipping and pruning may help slow it. I'm hoping to get some in the ground very soon, and I'm going to put some in a spot where it can go, and a spot where I can experiment with keeping it clipped, what have I got to lose??? I've learned so much this year, most of it is just running around up there looking for a place to go. There are some slow bolt spinach, and some that are not actually spinach, that you can have all summer long.

Where I live I am putting a few trellis' on the South side of some of my boxes, to keep some herbs and cooler plants a bit longer, and give them some shade, they will still get 6-8 hours of sun, in spite of a trellis full of vines. I have a box in my "kitchen" garden that has Morning Glories going up it, and it shades about 2 1/2' of the box for parts of the day, I had lettuce in that spot until late May, which for here is good, I'm usually pulling it up in April. Our garden area is in full sun by 9AM in spring and summer, and exposed until 7PM (later in late summer) thats 10 hours of TX sun, way too much for some plants here.

Did a bit more reading and realized I was confusing New Zealand Spinach with Malabar Spinach.

All of my beds get shade at least part of the day, which I view as a very good thing. We have a postage-sized backyard surrounded by 6 foot board fences, so between the house and the fences, we get shade, despite the lack of trees. Last fall I moved one bed to what turned out to be a very shady area, but I'm thinking that will be a great spot to try to grow lettuce as long as possible this spring.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  FarmerValerie on 2/22/2011, 9:58 am

Now that's a great use of space, lettuce in the shade. Last year I bought lattice for a trellis, I tried 3 times to tell my husband I needed lattice for my lettuce, he just laughed at my attempts. There are days when I just sit under a tree and watch the sun go around the yard at various times of the day, I also get to see birds swoop in and grab a tomato worm or two, and watch the predatory bugs feast on bad bugs, makes for an interesting time.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  ander217 on 2/22/2011, 1:00 pm

@elliephant wrote: I already have Swiss Chard that has overwintered. Will probably plant one more square.

Swiss chard is biennial. When it begins growth the second year it quickly goes to seed, so you might be better served to plant all new plants.

Although turnips will grow in the summer, around here they are only grown as a fall crop because aphids hit them hard in warm weather, and high temps along with dry weather can make the roots get woody very quickly.

Other options include melons as well as field peas - blackeyed peas, purple hull, zipper cream, etc. Do you like shelly beans such as pintos, great northern, red kidney, chick peas, or black turtle beans? Those are another possibility.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  FarmerValerie on 2/22/2011, 1:09 pm

My field peas got quite tall last year, but I planted 9 per square like Mel's book said, and they needed to compete for light, however going 4 to square may make them "bush" a bit more. Keep them picked clean and they will produce until the first freeze or at least first good frost. I personally will be doing 9 a square again, but then I will have an entire box for each kind of pea, with steaks and strings for support in case of high winds or storms, or kids and dogs.....

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  elliephant on 2/22/2011, 3:29 pm

@ander217 wrote:
@elliephant wrote: I already have Swiss Chard that has overwintered. Will probably plant one more square.

Swiss chard is biennial. When it begins growth the second year it quickly goes to seed, so you might be better served to plant all new plants.

Although turnips will grow in the summer, around here they are only grown as a fall crop because aphids hit them hard in warm weather, and high temps along with dry weather can make the roots get woody very quickly.

Other options include melons as well as field peas - blackeyed peas, purple hull, zipper cream, etc. Do you like shelly beans such as pintos, great northern, red kidney, chick peas, or black turtle beans? Those are another possibility.

I'm just starting to figure out the biennial thing...I planted the Swiss Chard sometime around Oct/Nov...when does the "second year" start? I think I read that peppers are biennial (although grown as annuals in most of the country), is that right? I have a few peppers in pots that I started from seed last summer. They gave a crop of peppers over the winter, then started losing their leaves. It was when we had the freezing temps and I did bring them inside...anyway, they are putting out all new leaves, so I'm pretty excited about that.

I will grow melons in the squares next to the trellises. My girls are quite excited about that, so I hope they work out. The trouble with field peas is that they fit into the same category of beans/peas that I'm trying to rotate something else through the squares. I'm thinking I shouldn't plant that same category of plants in the same squares back to back.

Picked up some more herb seeds at Wal-Mart today...oregano (can't find the other packet I bought :scratch: ), dill, and chives. Might go ahead and plant a couple of hot pepper plants, too...I'll just pick those up as a plant. I know they'll do well here and hopefully with all the tomatoes I've planted I'll get enough to make salsa. I wasn't going to plant any as I can find them quite cheap around here, but since it turned out that I expanded a lot more than I had expected I'm rethinking things now.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  walshevak on 2/22/2011, 5:39 pm

Does edame (soybeans) need a trellis? Burpee catalog doesn't say.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  Megan on 2/22/2011, 5:46 pm

@walshevak wrote:Does edame (soybeans) need a trellis? Burpee catalog doesn't say.

I did a brief Google and they are apparently grown like other bush beans, so, no trellis. Smile

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  walshevak on 2/22/2011, 6:40 pm

Great news. That filled my last 2 squares on my garden plan.

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  elliephant on 2/23/2011, 10:58 am

Oh, yet another bean that I want to try growing!

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  Megan on 2/23/2011, 12:32 pm

I would love to try growing soybeans, but I'm concerned with their yield. Seems like you have to grow a lot of them to get just a little. Has anyone tried growing them in a SFG?

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Re: Need more non-trellis summer veggies!

Post  FarmerValerie on 2/24/2011, 8:30 am

I have not done soybeans in the SFG, but I have done field peas. I did 9 per square and had one 8x4 box of small cream peas, and one 4x4 box of lady cream peas (teeny tiny cream peas). The did just fine, however I did not, I hurt my back and spend July, Aug, and Sept in the house in bed or on the couch, and keeping things picked and watered was not a priority to my kids. They watered at and picked at, kinda like cleaned at the kitchen or bedroom, you moms know what I mean. Anyway, I will be doing more field peas in my SFG's, but I will also put some steaks at each corner and a few inside the box so I can run some string for support. We did have a good storm last year, and some of my peas were blown over, because they are closer this way, they get just a bit taller, and just need some help staying up in the wind. My 4x4 box, was just enough to get seeds for this year, which was my goal for that box. I will probably do 9 seeds for the lady creams, and 5 seeds per square for the other's just to play with it and see. Having shorter fuller pea plants does help make up the difference at harvest of not having taller leggier and more plants, especially if a grandson chases a dog through the garden rows (ask my hubby about that) or a wind comes up. Also keep them picked, and they will produce until the first hard frost, or you pull them up.

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