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Starting new in Houston

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Starting new in Houston

Post  newstart on 11/23/2011, 10:04 am

Hi everyone. I am planning to start my square foot garden this spring. I am looking for new ideas and basic how to do information. I am getting tired of all these recalls and high prices on the most important thing FOOD. I feel that I need to get back to growing food for the health of me and my family.

A little about me, I live in houston. I think I am zone 9. I hope to start with 3 4ft wide by 10-12ft long beds. SO any help would be great.

Very Happy

Thank you in advance for any help and ideas. Hope to be an active member here and in my new garden

Wink

newstart

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  southern gardener on 11/23/2011, 10:08 am

glad you\'re here glad you\'re here glad you\'re here well, You're in the right place! First off, I'd suggest getting the book, All New Square Foot Gardening, and reading it. It's super easy reading, and will give you a good "plan". SFG is expensive (sort of) to start, but then it's easy, and sooo worth it! Even children can do it! again, welcome!!

southern gardener

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  newstart on 11/23/2011, 10:23 am

Thank you. I am trying to find the book at a 2nd hand store or public library that might have it. I trying to save money for the start up Rolling Eyes . But thank you for the welcome. Im sure i will have many questions

newstart

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  southern gardener on 11/23/2011, 10:43 am

you bet. Check Amazon.com for used books. Good prices and shipping isn't too bad either. It will be money well spent! I use mine all the time!

southern gardener

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 11/23/2011, 10:50 am

Yup, grab the book. The forum is an outstanding supplement and a place to form friendships and affirmations that you are doing things correctly.

Welcome aboard and feel free to ask as you go. Also, I would get a move on since being in zone 9, you are in the middle of your planting season from what I know. If you wait until March to plant, like the rest of us have to, the heat will crush you.

Watch for a frequent poster named Elliphant. She should be getting active again soon down near Brownsville. There are several others around here with climate like yours. Check your regional forum and get to know your regional host. Shannon has done a great job down there.

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  newstart on 11/23/2011, 2:51 pm

I plan on starting in early febuary building the boxes and beds and planting. I will start some seeds vey soon and I will plant seeds as well as plants..

How do I find my regional person, Shannon you said right. Thast so funny my name is Shannon as well. I have been reading and rereading many threads and posts.

I am very excited about starting. Counting down the days

newstart

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  llama momma on 11/23/2011, 2:57 pm

Welcome, you're gonna love it

llama momma

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  elliephant on 11/24/2011, 1:15 pm

Howdy! I've not been as active as I normally would be due to a complicated 1st trimester, so I'm glad I caught your post!

I was first introduced to the square foot concept by friends in Conroe and they had the most awesome garden in their typical suburban postage stamp backyard. I remember visiting in mid-March for spring break and being amazed at how big everything already was.

I've funded my sfgs mostly with Home Depot and Lowes gift cards for Christmas and birthdays over the past couple of years. This year I find myself not really needing to buy much of anything, and it's great!

We moved into a new house at the end of the summer and I've been busy with a car accident, sick kids, and a new pregnancy, but I've still managed to get 2 of my beds set up and planted for the fall. I'm trying double-deep beds this year (stacked 2 normal ones on top of each other) because the heat was just so severe last year...and because I have an even smaller backyard now, so I figured it was a good opportunity to experiment and see if I notice any difference.

I'm not quite sure about your area, but we have a window of about 6 weeks when it is possible for us to get a freeze. Last year the only thing I lost to the freeze, which came at the beginning of Feb, was my last tomato plant. The peas, broccoli, cauliflower, swiss chard, and even lettuce survived just fine. On Valentine's Day I put out my tomatoes, which I had started from seed at the first of the year.

I am hoping and praying for a milder year to come. We hit 97 just 3 weeks after our freeze last year and are still hitting record highs in the low 90s in late November! It was a rough year for gardening. And of course the drought hasn't helped matters.

Are you looking to do things all natural, or more conventional? Fungal diseases are something to really read up on seeing as you live in a humid climate. I've found that I really have to stay on top of preventative fungal treatments.

Anyway, about time to clear the table and set it for Thanksgiving! Welcome to the forum! Just typing this gets me excited about starting my tomatoes after the holidays!

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  sherryeo on 11/24/2011, 6:31 pm

newstart, Shannon hasn't been around as much as usual lately. It happens sometimes that life gets in the way of participation in the forum for a while, then people find their way back. Shannon was here, I think it was last Sunday, so hopefully she'll be back again soon. She is a great regional host for us!

It's also the time of the year when lots of folk drop out for a while because they're not able to actively garden due to their colder climates - from what I understand this happens every year (I'm new here this year!)

elliephant! I hope all goes well with your new little one-on-the-way! Congrats! Another example of how real life get in the way of forum participation sometimes - it's inevitable. I just hope things get better and everyone's able to come on back soon.

sherryeo

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  newstart on 11/24/2011, 11:25 pm

Elliephant Congrats an the new one on the way. You are in brownsville, I think your weather is close to mine. How tall are your beds? I was thinking about doing 10 inches. Would this work in our heat?



Thanks to everyone for being so nice

newstart

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  jamesmusslewhite on 11/25/2011, 3:52 am

I was born and raised in Houston. And over 25 years I ran both Landscape and retail/ wholesale nurseries in that area of the country. Houston is a harsh teacher. Thes 5 simple rules will save you 95% of your headaches in South Texas. And over the years I have installed and tended to more gardens and landscapes than I could possible even remember.

1,) Water, you must be able to quickly water your gardens during extrema heat conditions.

2) Well composted and enriched garden soils or mixes.

3.) Soils must be able to both breath and drain well.

4.) Utilize your shade areas, most vegetables can handle the direct Texas Gulf coast sun from early morning lite till 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm; only the most hardiest varities can handle the harsh 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm sun.

5.)
If your soil is black-gumbo clay - gypsum
because it brakes large clay chunks into smaller clay chunks. greatly increasing both drainage and aeration.
If your soil t is sandy - Lime & add micro-nutrients.
because sand tends to be neutral Ph by nature, were Texas is Sub-Tropic which means heavy rainfall. Heavy rainfall leaches soils, heavily leached soils tend to be Acidic Ph by nature and void of most beneficial heavy medals and heavy nutrients.

A good organics program will greatly benefit you no mater which type of soil you have.


good luck

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Re: Starting new in Houston

Post  newstart on 11/25/2011, 9:07 am

Thanks I am in Houston as well. Thanks for the information. Hope to have a great garden this sprine. When do you start planting?

newstart

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Re: Starting new in Houston

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