Author Topic: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2  (Read 190030 times)

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #450 on: August 03, 2010, 05:43:32 PM »
Thanks tbm.   I'm just stupid enough to try something and just smart enough not to ruin everything.

lvschant,  ground cherries seem to do well here.   They got giant then flopped over and exposed the ground at the base of the plants to sun which set them back a bit.  I snapped the picture above just because I noticed they had started really creeping and growing again, even (or especially) in the 100 degree heat.   
I have discovered that that the only thing tastier than a 97 degree Tommie Toe straight off the vine is a 97 degree ground cherry straight off the ground.  They just melt in your mouth. 

Like fritz said, I think I have them for life now due to the hundreds that fell under the plants after they flopped;  I got lazy (tired of scrounging for them as the tomatoes were going full bore).  They are notorious self seeders from season to season so I'm probably just going to let them run by themselves next year.

I am getting my plans for the winter in order now too-  some rearranging of the boxwoods and opening up room for more efficient and aesthetic plantings.

In the meantime, peppers:






Offline sclindah

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #451 on: August 04, 2010, 06:54:02 PM »
Here in South Carolina my artichokes look about the same as yours as does our asparagus.  Maybe we'll have artichokes in the late fall???  This is our first year growing them and so far no signs of buds.  The heat has been insane!  At least the okra loves it.  Our tomatoes and peppers are still going strong.

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #452 on: August 04, 2010, 07:26:33 PM »
From memory so it should be verified -

'chokes normally need a certain number of cooling hours to flower and around here that means wintering over.  The ones I planted are allegedly a hybrid that is a first season flowering variety but I'm not banking on it.   Regardless, they are hardy enough to winter over @ the root level with a little mulch so if not this year, maybe next year we get them. 

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #453 on: August 09, 2010, 04:37:50 AM »
Transition time has arrived-

The Roma VF and Martinos Roma are determinate varieties (meaning an unbelievable flush of tomatoes then little or none afterward) and are pretty much spent.  There are a few green tomatoes on each plant still but their work is done and I need the space for the fall garden.

So yesterday was "phase one" tomato removal. 

I wanted to get every last remnant of them out- including any fallen tomatoes and dried fallen leaves.  Why?  I have enjoyed a virtually disease free season this year in a large part due the fact that there was nothing over wintering in or on the soil in the tomato beds. This is why it is important to clean up everything that hits the ground around your tomato plants as the season goes along too.

The Romas flled the large cages so what I ended up doing was cutting the plants at the base and then lifting the whole cage out. I moved them away a bit then shook/pulled the plants out and put them in the city yard waste bin that I rarely use.  Normally most yard waste becomes compost but I want all traces of this years tomato crop out of here.

This is a painful picture for me- in the past I have pulled frost wilted plants out- never robust (but effectively spent out) plants.




The spot where this plant was is now an open  2x2 square.



 I continued and up pulling the rest of that side's row of 6 caged VFs before i decided it was just too damn hot.  I carefully picked up all fallen fruit, branches and leaves then raked up the straw mulch that was under the plants.  This all was disposed of with the plants as well.

I pulled the roots and left them to dry a bit in the sun; this evening I'll shake the soil mix off and dispose of them as well.   These roots were impressive- they were as thick as pencils and some ran laterally 3 feet

Offline martomic

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #454 on: August 10, 2010, 10:21:05 AM »
Will you plant tomatoes in the same boxes next year or will you rotate the location every year?

Offline Orion53

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #455 on: August 10, 2010, 01:35:37 PM »
Cohutt,

With the philosophy of removing everything to prevent disease, will you be using the cages again or making new ones next year?  I have some really nice galvanized cages I used this year, but wonder if I need to clean them or just use them without worry.

Thanks,

053

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #456 on: August 10, 2010, 01:45:21 PM »
So yesterday was "phase one" tomato removal. 

I wanted to get every last remnant of them out- including any fallen tomatoes and dried fallen leaves.  Why?  I have enjoyed a virtually disease free season this year in a large part due the fact that there was nothing over wintering in or on the soil in the tomato beds. This is why it is important to clean up everything that hits the ground around your tomato plants as the season goes along too.

The Romas flled the large cages so what I ended up doing was cutting the plants at the base and then lifting the whole cage out. I moved them away a bit then shook/pulled the plants out and put them in the city yard waste bin that I rarely use.  Normally most yard waste becomes compost but I want all traces of this years tomato crop out of here.

Great idea to keep things disease free.  I don't remember if you did potatoes this year or not, but keep in mind that relatives to tomatoes can harbor the tomato diseases.  Late blight over winters in missed potatoes.

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #457 on: August 10, 2010, 05:04:36 PM »
I plan on rotating but just HOW I'm not sure.  If I clean out as much remnants as possible I might get away with a couple years or more in a row but I'd rather not press my luck.

The good news is all these beds had tomatoes for the first time this year so I have had a decent year from a disease standpoint without doing much of anything.  I had one plant turn up with a really funky black mildew or fungus on it and I pulled it immediately but it did hit anything else.

The cages will be reused as is.  I won't be storing them inside so they will get the benefit of many freezing nights over the course of the winter.  From what i have red a lot of the holdover diseases that get tomatoes are sensitive to cold so really hard freezes should take care of this, right?

Fritz, I did potatoes in straw on top of the beds and it was a disappointment.  Cricket nymphs moved in an had fun with any tubers trying to develop in the straw but I did get some in the unhilled Mel's mix underneath.   Live and learn eh?  I'll do them again but will use traditional hilling methods for sure.   I was cognizant of the crossover diseases from taters to maters and vice versa so I will be considering this in my rotation schemes.

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #458 on: August 11, 2010, 08:14:01 PM »
Crap, the gourds were rocking then I have a whole section wilt and pretty much die in 2 days.

Cucumber beetles in the area, I was wondering what they were eating.




Offline KYdoomer

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #459 on: August 11, 2010, 08:35:29 PM »
Surely not cucumber beetles.  I dunno you might have them worse than me.  My garden is crawling, I can't imagine them doing that much damage. 

The ugly vine borers didn't get you again did they?  I only had two pumpkin vines survive and they are hanging on for dear life.

Well, whatever got ya, I hope you hunt em down and teach em a lesson.   >:(

J

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #460 on: August 11, 2010, 08:40:51 PM »
looks like bacteria wilt- no vine borers on these, I've inspected plus the season is past down here.

I may still be able to harvest and save the gourds from what i read.  If that's the case, fine, I have about 3x what I needed/wanted from this experiment.  

same area a few days ago


Offline KYdoomer

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #461 on: August 12, 2010, 08:42:41 AM »
Wow, that was scary quick.

J

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #462 on: August 12, 2010, 04:45:38 PM »
:)

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #463 on: August 16, 2010, 05:16:16 PM »
Confession time:

I completely missed something about bush beans last year and only learned it this year because I wasn't so pressed for space.

Bush beans put out a second set of blooms after the first big flurry.  Duh.  Last year I pulled mine before the second set took place. Double duh.

These are Henderson baby limas in their second bloom session.  Boy, glad I was slack this year.




Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #464 on: August 16, 2010, 06:24:59 PM »
Learn something everyday, don't we?   I haven't been able to get any lima beans this year.  I know 2 years ago, we pulled them after the first picking.  But we always leave the green beans for multiple harvests.

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #465 on: August 16, 2010, 07:18:36 PM »
I also learned something else new.  

There are moths almost as big as hummingbirds; one visited my garden.

It is hemaris diffinis aka Snowberry Clearwing or Bumblebee Moth.  I found the match on this site http://www.silkmoths.bizland.com/hdiffinis.htm.  

It wasn't easy to get these shots; check out the long nectar sucking tweeter extending into the flower:





« Last Edit: August 16, 2010, 07:21:03 PM by cohutt »

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #466 on: August 17, 2010, 05:27:46 AM »
They are very cool, aren't they?  We had those visiting our flowers on the deck when we were in the other house.  I haven't seen them yet in the new house.  I was shocked at the size of these suckers.

Offline martomic

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #467 on: August 17, 2010, 07:31:32 PM »
Nice pics! C, I remember in the past you planted fava beans, were yours a bush style variety or were they climbers? I just put some in the ground a few days ago. Something new to try for the fall. I was amazed at the size of those seeds!

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #468 on: August 17, 2010, 07:53:05 PM »
Technically limas, not favas. Pretty similar, seems like maybe Limas are a sub category of favas or something? 

As far as the limas, I have planted both bush and climbers.

Offline martomic

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #469 on: August 17, 2010, 08:02:40 PM »
I was just getting ready to tell you never mind. I finally found your post way back in the beginning. Thanks anyways!

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #470 on: August 22, 2010, 08:02:35 PM »
The last week has been transition week- more cleanup and prepping for the fall garden as well as some seeds sown.

Somehow or another I started moving rocks today.  I have no idea why I started.   

I had probed and unearthed some of the old shale path stones in the boxwood garden a few weeks ago.   I've about busted my arse navigating the moonscape it created so I guess that's what motivated me....

anyway, some are organized around the bell/birdbath and out of the way for a little while, others are over in a transitional area between the lawn and the back garden area.

needless to say I'm already a little stiff, these monkeys weren't light.







I also noticed that the little ground cherry volunteers that spouted out of an anthill adjacent to a stump are getting downright respectable now:



The pole limas have started flowering again:



For perspective, check out the bean trellis arbor now- everything behind the Asparagus is growing out of the two small 2x8 beds. 


Offline Sweethearts Mom

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #471 on: August 22, 2010, 08:39:47 PM »
That moth is amazingly beautiful. I don't suppose it's offspring aren't damaging? I love the stones! I can't wait to see what you do with them. And OMG what the heck are you feeding those plants??

Offline OKGranny

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #472 on: August 24, 2010, 01:23:22 AM »
This years picture journey of your garden has been so much fun and even more amazing than last years.

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #473 on: August 24, 2010, 04:31:08 AM »
Thanks -
the plants are being fed mostly sunshine and Mels mix. The rear garden has butter soil under the beds though; even though it is clay based it had the benefit of years and years of leaves decomposing into it and no lawn to tap the nutrients out.
After two seasons of going wide open with a manic work winter in between I'm beginning to slow down and see what modest improvements or refinements might make things more productive with less work.  In other words I'm seeing what likes the space and doesn't (and vice versa) as well as what we actually like to eat AND incorporate into our food planning cycle.
Getting stuff to come out of the ground is fairly easy; getting some harvest for it isn't sure thing but is better than a 50% proposition even for a beginner like me. 

What I'm figuring out this year is making it all work together takes a little thought. 

I'm married to a "retired" industrial engineer whose whole expertise is supposed to be process and planning and all the related stuff.  Maybe I can get her to put down the plate of sliced tomatoes and baby limas long enough to help me lol.

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #474 on: August 24, 2010, 05:28:23 AM »
It's all looking great, Cohutt. I'd bet your IE would love that planning project... I know I like putting all that stuff to use when I get the (rare) chance at it.

Offline cohutt

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #475 on: August 24, 2010, 05:38:15 AM »
HA.  I know, she claims she doesn't but them has the google CAD program up about half the time I walk by her computer kiosk.    Either that or my daughter's facebook page doing some intelligence gathering lol.

I just set a peanut butter baited havahart trap back between the read beds.  I have declared war on the satan's spawn aka bushy tailed tree rats that have reappeared.  They have decided my rear tomatoes are an easy pick despite the occasional poodle rocket that is launched upon them.  The end of the line was when they ate the Martino's Romas I was letting ripen for seed. 

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #476 on: August 24, 2010, 07:49:43 AM »
Good luck getting rid of those squirrels.  I'm pretty lucky with that, we have some, but nobody nearby feeds them, so they do like squirrels are meant to do, forage for their food, not set up shop in the garden waiting for stuff to get close to ripe.

So, any other big plans for changing the garden space?  We will be adding more beds and moving some around a little.  (of course we really means me)  I'm also thinking about putting down plastic between the beds and covering it with pea gravel.  We didn't plant as much of the space that was not in beds this year as we planed to plant.  So most of that will become raised beds.  I will leave a patch to plant corn and I found last year that corn doesn't do all that well in a raised bed, just not enough solid earth to grab onto.

Offline Kilgor

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #477 on: August 24, 2010, 11:49:30 AM »
Good luck getting rid of those squirrels.  I'm pretty lucky with that, we have some, but nobody nearby feeds them, so they do like squirrels are meant to do, forage for their food, not set up shop in the garden waiting for stuff to get close to ripe.

So, any other big plans for changing the garden space?  We will be adding more beds and moving some around a little.  (of course we really means me)  I'm also thinking about putting down plastic between the beds and covering it with pea gravel.  We didn't plant as much of the space that was not in beds this year as we planed to plant.  So most of that will become raised beds.  I will leave a patch to plant corn and I found last year that corn doesn't do all that well in a raised bed, just not enough solid earth to grab onto.


I had the same experience with corn.  I haven't done it yet, but it was suggested to suspend a cattle panel from t posts horizontally 2-3" off the ground and let the corn grow through it for support.  I think I read it in Mel's book.  Seems like it would work.

Offline fritz_monroe

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #478 on: August 24, 2010, 01:20:00 PM »
I followed Cohutt's lead and suspended trellis netting from T posts.  Worked pretty well, but not perfectly.  Maybe a double hanging of trellis at 2' and 4' would work better.

Offline joeinwv

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Re: Cohutt builds a garden, Chapter 2
« Reply #479 on: August 24, 2010, 02:47:39 PM »
".......modest improvements or refinements might make things more productive with less work....."

This is what I am focusing on over the winter - this year I went crazy cramming plants in every bit of space I could find. It pretty well all worked, but I think I could have gotten the same yield with 75% of the plants. I also need to do better succession planning. I have had a few monster harvests with some down time in between.