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June in the Midwest!

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June in the Midwest!

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 5/31/2011, 11:28 am

Here we go....a day early. But, summer is here in the midwest. And, with a vengence for some.

Down in the lower third, we have the heat! We are starting off with a bilstering summer. Mid, and even upper, 90s. Well, most of us have the heat. It's not supposed to last too terribly long, but it's going to cause us to bolt in a lot of cases. My spinaches are long gone. My lettuces will endure. And, my broccoli and cauliflower are heading now....good timing. The only thing I worry about is my peas. Those babies are still producing strong. So strong, in fact, they are over 6 feet tall and have fallen over the trellis and are leaning on my hoops and netting. But, they are producing like mad.....without innoculant. We've already agreed next year, we are giving another 2 squares to the peas. We love them.

Middle and upper midwest are coming along nicely from what I read. You guys are even getting tomatoes in the ground. I am excited to see how we all perform as each Tuesday passes. You guys are likley getting the storm patterns now. As the summer settles in, you get more active with storms.

To predict this coming change, just watch the jet stream. Most tv stations will feature it from time to time. If not, find a weather website that has some charts on it. WUnderground.com is my favorite, but any of them will do. Poke around until you find a chart showing the jet stream. In the winter, the jet dips south and that ushers in the polar cold air. But, in the summer the opposite is true. As the jet moves back north, up into Canada, the warm air surges north. However, the jet stream is where the severe storms ride...like an ocean current. Dips in the jet hold our Low Pressure Systems/stroms. And, where the jet starts to curl back north is where you find the storms riding. Watch as summer wears on. If the jet is dipping to your west and riding back north over you, there will be storms in your area. It just takes awhile to get up that far north in spring. This is why Texas' major tornado season is March, Kansas is May, and Minnesota is June. It's all in the jet stream's travels north.

My garden just was dessimated by kids this weekend, too. We had relatives in from KC and they ran my harvest for our BBQ. They had a blast, but I had to replant about 10 squares. The garden hasn't looked this naked since mid-March...lol.

Here are some shots of the harvest going on...

My daughter and carrots....look in the bucket, though....radishes, lettuces, carrots, onions all in there.


My nephew in full wife-beater gear adds to the harvest. He has never seen a garden before so we saved all the harvesting for him. He had a blast!


Working together..



Now, the updated pics for June 1...

First, I want to show you the rootballs of the lettuce. This is why we can plant so close together. These are about the size of golf balls. They are from my Vivian Romaine variety. The kids clipped them so close, it will take weeks to get more from these guys. And, in the heat, the plants will likely become very stressed. But, as for the rootball, this is why we water frequently in my garden. Sure there were more roots, but this is the main action site.


Next, the tipping peas. These have gotten so big! I didn't think they would have the chance to get past 4 feet. So, that's what I built the trellis for. Well, they overran the trellis and are spilling over onto the top of the hoops. But, also take notice WHY we plant on the north side with climbers. Look at the shade being cast. It's not in the garden because I'm on the north side. The squares just to the left of the peas can handle any plant I want to put there because the sun hits those adjacent squares all day long, too.


If you look closely, amongst the microgreens, you will see purple-hued flowers on my bush beans. I'm getting watery just thinking about them...


I am such a nut for SFG that I am not open to interpretation anymore. So much so, this is bothering me. It's my first non-SFG/MM plant in 3 years. My neighbor had oregano, and other herbs, running over their patio. They gave me a bit of the oregano, but brought it in a pot...lol. He is also a recent SFG convert, so I will joke with him that he should know better. BTW, his tomatoes and peppers are taking off, too. He's hooked and his wife is a total believer now....she was a complete skeptic.


Here is a better shot of a couple of half-long Danvers and my heads of cauliflower and broccoli...


And, a shot of the tomatoes and peppers. There will be a couple more in the TTuesday thread...


Big update, but a lot to cover. Summer is here. Gardening season is in full swing. The wait from winter is over for 98% of us in the region. Get out there and show us what you have in your garden.

This is the month to brag about things...before drought sets in.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  MasonGarden on 5/31/2011, 4:01 pm

Hi BBG! Your garden looks great and you are getting fantastic yields from your SFG. Good for you (and your cute helpers). Yes, it definitely feels like summer is here in Cincy! Here is the link to the update I posted earlier today. Some progress, but I haven't yet achieved that lush garden look that I'm hoping for! Maybe in another month!

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t6934p15-joy-joy-joy#68908


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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  boog1 on 6/1/2011, 5:39 pm

well heres few new pics of the tabletop. in the first pic you can see i've had ta stake the peppers,broccoli and fennel we've had winds 10-25 mph the past couple of days an its playin havick on those transplants.



this pic is the other half of the north/south box, beans,peas,spinach,kale all started from seed. sence the suns been out the past couple of days it seems like alot of the stuff has doubled in size.







this is the east/west box. the 4 squares on the left are lettuce the other 4 have 1 beet and 1 radish in the back the other 2 in the frount are carrots this box is lagging way behind the other one no clue as to why could be any number of reasons.the bush beans and snow peas were started from seed more than a month after the radishs,beets and carrots and they have out grown them 2 fold. on a good note the "other half" told me the 1 lettuce and 1 kale transplants that are a month older than the other stuff i started in their respective squares are ready ta pick ta eat.




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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  walshevak on 6/1/2011, 6:24 pm

Sun does seem to have that effect on plants. Razz How's the stuff you were forced to plant in the ground?

Kay

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  laurainwinona on 6/1/2011, 10:28 pm

My peas are growing....seems like they get bigger daily. They are about 18 in. high now. I transplanted peppers, cukes and tomato two weeks ago, just before the 96* day we had. The peppers are looking sickly but they are hanging on. The cukes got the pinched-stem look and totally shrivelled. The tomato (as I mentioned in the T Tues thread) shrivelled, too. I'm afraid to put my watermelon and cantaloupe out....I'll make sure to harden those off, as I didn't with the other stuff. But my lettuce took off, and we had a big salad tonight, picked 1/2 hour before we sat down to eat! Mmmm-mmmm!! My kids had fun picking and even asked permission to eat a leaf right then and there....What a way to get them to eat veggies! Very Happy The spinach is growing like crazy....I've put some in salad and tried a spinach quiche recipe. Now it's bolting. My carrots, onions, potatoes, beans and broccoli, which all seemed to start soooo slowly, are doing really well now. Soon I'll start some broccoli and cabbage in the tray for fall.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  Smartchick on 6/3/2011, 2:42 pm

Well, I finally got around to posting. Here is where my garden is this week. So far the past week I've battled hail, 40 mph winds, aphids (on the sweet potatoes - never gotten those before) and flea beetles on my potatoes (yet another new pest I haven't had). Oh, and a small rabbit that figured out how to get through/around the chicken wire in our backyard somehow. At least gardening is always exciting!

Memorial Day project. Got it done on Sunday afternoon. With a 1/2 inch of rain on Sunday night it filled up both barrels 2/3 of the way. Woo hoo!



the Collard Greens that ate Manhattan...and the onions that keep getting blown over by the nifty windy days here. Hopefully I'll still get some bulbs. Acorn squash and cukes are just poking their heads out.



Peas, beets, and more beets.



The salad bar (had to pull the spinach in the front this week as it was on it's way to bolting. Corn is about 8" high. When it gets a bit higher I will plant purple beans around it.



The potato bins (3 regular and one sweet potato)



Not SFG, but a nice lookin' strawberry bed anyway. Very Happy




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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 6/3/2011, 6:08 pm

I would love to know how those rain barrels work. I can't see a roof nearby and getting 2/3 full after a 1/2 inch rain puzzles me.

As for me, my peas are stopping production as of today. I notice very few blossoms. Looks like their days are numbered.

But, I am getting pepper blooms like wildfire. I have a few fruits setting as a result. Hope to harvest in the short term future. Hot weather really fired them up....no pun intended. Well, maybe I did intend....lol.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  staf74 on 6/3/2011, 11:00 pm

I think I can spot a kind of downspout in the left of the picture that goes behind the plant and into the barrel. It must be hooked to a roof to get that result. They do work amazingly well when it rains. Mine get full in no time.

Nice updates from everybody over in the mid-west.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  westie42 on 6/4/2011, 1:04 am

Well water seems to be my most successful harvest so far. I have 10 barrels full from a 25x25 ft roof on the back of my story and a half house. Plus plenty also overflows away. Smart chick it looks like you manifolded with 2" pvc and that is the only way to go. Some youtubes show 3/4" pipe bottom side manifolds and then are required to have barrel to barrel 2" overflows near the top because 3/4 at the bottom can't move the water to the rest of their barrels fast enough. That idea looks insane to me. Nice job SmartChick but I am curious how you vented the tops of your barrels. The only difference in my base is I put the planks on the ground for overall support but I have a lot more barrels to try and keep level and stable. Some day when I have a little time and figure out how to get pics from my Ipod touch uploaded to wherever on SFG Forum I will do a writeup with pics.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  CindiLou on 6/4/2011, 10:59 pm

June starting strong.

Peas starting to bloom. Arugula has bolted, radishes are done. Most of my lettuce is still going.
Asian beans and bush beans planted in bare spots in the salad beds. Dog in the background is Chase, my Australian Shepard I got from a humane society a couple of months ago. I missed a big dog in the backyard after my last one passed a couple of years ago.



Onions/garlic/brussel sprouts doing great, green beans sprouted fast!


I have a couple of broccolis making heads...


pole beans and cucumbers making an appearance this week


Back garden looks like a garden now! Hubby got the posts to put up another trellis because the beans/cucumbers will be heading there soon.


Pasta basket doing great! Patio tomato blooming. I pruned today! First time I every pruned a tomato. I read Acara's and also took off the bottom leaves up to the flowering stems. This will also give some room to the oregano and stuff also in the basket!

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 6/4/2011, 11:17 pm

Great looking head of broccoli, CindiLou. Mine never got that big.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  CindiLou on 6/4/2011, 11:28 pm

@BackyardBirdGardner wrote:Great looking head of broccoli, CindiLou. Mine never got that big.

I have never gotten one that big either. BUT last year was first time SFG and the box was not pure MM. This box is pure MM! So loving it lol...The first box was made from the old book. I didn't know about the new one. So it was just amended soil. Next year I am taking it out and adding peat moss and vermiculite. With a couple more composts it will be MM then!

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  unmadecastle on 6/5/2011, 1:41 pm

Here are some picture of my 2 raised beds. They are 6'x3' each.







This one has 6 tomaoto plants (2 beef steak, 3 better boy and 1 cherry tomato), cucs, cabbage, beans, jalepeno pepper, carrots, onions and lettuce. Just harvested the radishes yesterday and planted more beans in that spot.



This bed has corn, peas, beans, carrots, onions, cabbage,green bell pepper, chives and lettuce and just planted pumpkin seeds yesterday after harvesting the radishes from this bed too.



Here are some of the radishes we harvested yesterday. The red ones are cherry bell and the red and white ones are sparklers. They are so good!




We have potastoes in 3 different pots and they are all coming along nicely. I forgot to get pictures of them. We also have a tomato in a pot just because my boys wanted to plant it somewhere. I also have some flowers in both beds.

Hope every one is having as nice a day as I am!

Ann

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  westie42 on 6/5/2011, 1:49 pm

Nice going, Looks like the cabbage wants to own the whole box and the radishes are perfect. You must have been spared the crappy spring start many of us have been dealt. Out of curiosity what did you find to use in your MM it all looks very wholesome.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  unmadecastle on 6/5/2011, 2:18 pm

@westie42 wrote:Nice going, Looks like the cabbage wants to own the whole box and the radishes are perfect. You must have been spared the crappy spring start many of us have been dealt. Out of curiosity what did you find to use in your MM it all looks very wholesome.


We had a crappy spring too. I was really worried about the radishes. They didnt do much for so long and then all of a sudden the past 2 weeks they went crazy. Out of 3 squares we had only 3 radishes that didn't grow the radish.

I am thinking I am going to have to trim the cabbage leaves a little. They are crazy! My green beans sprouted in 2 days! That was so exciting for my 10 year old.

My mels mix has cow manure, forest, poultry, rice hull and shrimp for the composts. I used the vermiculite from the insulation section at Menards.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  westie42 on 6/5/2011, 2:29 pm

Last question Ann is you are farther away from rice or shrimp territory than me where did you find those composts.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  boog1 on 6/5/2011, 3:28 pm

hey cindi is that a minature horse or a really big dog in that one pic ?? Smile



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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  unmadecastle on 6/5/2011, 6:17 pm

@westie42 wrote:Last question Ann is you are farther away from rice or shrimp territory than me where did you find those composts.

Menards had an organic shrimp (cant remember the name but it was in a green bag). And the rice was in the same bag as my poultry compost. I want to say that we found that one at Kmart.

Ann

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  CindiLou on 6/5/2011, 11:19 pm

@boog1 wrote:hey cindi is that a minature horse or a really big dog in that one pic ?? Smile



boog

I think it is a moose! Rofl...we adopted Chase (Australian Shepherd) from a humane society the first part of April. He was about 25 pounds over weight the vet says! He is adorable! He jumps in the air with all four feet when he sees you! I am teaching him to sit so he don't jump on me, he comes up to my hip! Hubby is 6'3". so he is teaching him to heel for me. He is just starved for affection. They said they had had him for a long time. He had been adopted out once and brought back because "he was too possesive of the wife". We suspect it was because he has had no training so he is very rowdy. As soon as he learns he can not jump on me (I have M.S. and I fall down) we will be able to put him in the fenced area. I hate having him on the cable because I am afraid he will tangle me or a grandkid up in it.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  Smartchick on 6/6/2011, 11:38 am

Yep. The rain barrels are hooked to a downspout. I modified some instructions I found in "The Family Handyman" magazine that my husband gets (and I read more than he does Smile - they are available online if anyone is interested). I cut holes in the top (since they didn't have lids that could be removed), cleaned them out and covered with screen to keep the skeeters out and the downspout is inserted in a hole I cut in the side with my jigsaw. I used the existing ports that were in the "top" of the barrels (2" PVC pipe adapters screwed right into them - YAY!) and cut another hole for the overflow pipe. All said it cost me about $25 for the setup. The barrels were free courtesy of my brother's work and we had the cinder blocks and reclaimed wood in the garage. All I bought was the PVC, the "comealongs" to strap them to the fence and two small pieces of downspout extension. I was lucky not to have to cut the downspout as the seam was already in just the right place and with a small 15" extension I was able to get it down to the barrels.

I was blown away how quickly they filled up. Free water is good!

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 6/6/2011, 1:20 pm

Ahhh, the name "Smartchick" is starting to sound like the truth. Nice jerry-rig.

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  Smartchick on 6/6/2011, 4:13 pm

Nice jerry-rig.

My brother and I refer to this type of project as "Macgyvering" Laughing . He is far, far better at it than I am but I've learned a few things from him over the years.

Good thing I don't have a picky HOA to deal with. I'm sure my little setup wouldn't make some happy. This fall I plan to get some pavers when the stores are trying to get rid of them and level out that part of the ground and make a more solid foundation. This will do for now.

Now if I could just get the bunnies out of the yard. You'd think having an entire backyard fence lined with chicken wire would keep them out but the little buggers manage to make/find holes. I patched 3 or 4 last week. I think I will be putting up a fence around the garden space as well as I don't to spend every waking hour trying to chase them out. That will be easier to maintain and they can happily much on all the clover that is in our backyard instead!

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 6/6/2011, 5:07 pm

Remember the cardinal rules of MacGyvering...according to Jeff Foxworthy.

1.. If it moves and it's not supposed to.....DuckTape.
2.. If it doesn't move and it's supposed to.....WD-40.

Those are the only two tools required in the Redneck Toolbox. Cool

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Re: June in the Midwest!

Post  CindiLou on 6/6/2011, 10:36 pm

I so miss the MacGyver show!

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Weather

Post  CindiLou on 6/7/2011, 12:33 am

Now if the poor gardens can only make it through the next couple of days!



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Re: June in the Midwest!

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