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Starting over because of frost Empty Starting over because of frost

Post  greatgranny on 5/15/2016, 6:50 pm

I woke up this morning and discovered that the peppers, egg plant and tomatoes were toast.  I doubt if they will recover.  Also, the potatoes are not looking too good. 
I think if the potatoes are also gone, I will just plant something else there. 

This is very strange because I always plant the toms, this time of the year.

Today it is 65 and tonight it supposed to be 44.  Guess I missed listening yesterday.
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Post  Scorpio Rising on 5/15/2016, 8:08 pm

North and Central Midwest Region had been plagued by schizophrenia as far as the weather. As of late, it has been cold cold cold and wet. Really cold. Most of us are just hunkering down and holdin onto our tenders until it gets seasonable!

I absolutely would have been putting my tomatoes in last weekend, and peppers & cukes today. It was cold and windy!

You are not alone, GGranny! Still sorry about your plants.....
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Post  camprn on 5/15/2016, 9:12 pm

The potatoes will likely bounce back. Not so the others. I'm looking at most likely Memorial day to put in my tender transplants.

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Post  greatgranny on 5/15/2016, 9:35 pm

@camprn wrote:The potatoes will likely bounce back. Not so the others. I'm looking at most likely Memorial day to put in my tender transplants.
I think you may be right.  I am just going to wait and see.  I could put some extra kohlrabi or some extra "whatever".  I am not going to put the peppers, egg plant and tomatoes back in until June first just to be on the safe side.  Outdoors in the daylight and back in the house until then.
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Post  Scorpio Rising on 5/15/2016, 10:16 pm

Because I have been a slacker, I only have one brave tater out there...a compost pile rescue! No doubt it will be fine! Volunteers are the bestest ever! I love you
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Post  GrowRunner on 5/16/2016, 11:05 am

So sorry to hear about this. For what it's worth, I was late to the seed starting game. My toms are just now getting their 2nd and 3rd sets of true leaves and are only a few inches high. I'm debating with myself if it is worth repotting them once for a couple more weeks before putting them in ground so that there is more stem to bury, or just planting them in as is. My peppers and eggplants are just barely starting to show signs of their first sets of true leaves. So they've all got a ways to go to catch up. So I'm right there with you in terms of being behind now. Starting over because of frost 3170584802 I'm in zone 6.
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Post  Zmoore on 5/16/2016, 1:27 pm

UGH!!! Sad Sad Sad Sad
Sorry to hear that.  That groundhog should be shot though, early spring my... patooty.
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Post  landarch on 5/16/2016, 2:03 pm

Granny, do you hold back extra seedlings?...or do you go buy replacements?

Weird weather here as well...tomatoes, peppers, and cuckes being held back...sugar ann peas, lettuce, spinach loving it...cole crops still bolting early for some reason.
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Post  greatgranny on 5/16/2016, 2:26 pm

@Zmoore wrote:UGH!!! Sad Sad Sad Sad
Sorry to hear that.  That groundhog should be shot though, early spring my... patooty.
Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing
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Post  greatgranny on 5/16/2016, 2:29 pm

@landarch wrote:Granny, do you hold back extra seedlings?...or do you go buy replacements?

Weird weather here as well...tomatoes, peppers, and cuckes being held back...sugar ann peas, lettuce, spinach loving it...cole crops still bolting early for some reason.
I buy my seedlings from a local organic gardening store.  I used to grow my own but my small needs were better spent getting the boxes ready and caring for the compost. 

Yes, this is one of the strangest springs I have ever lived in. (and I am old)
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Post  sanderson on 5/17/2016, 2:17 am

Runner, This was the first time I didn't up pot the plants. I was late getting the seeds in the pots so I just planted the seedlings when the weather was safe. They are doing great. The tomatoes were tall enough to put the little root balls deeper in the Mix and covered some of the stem. I may try this again next year.

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Post  Windmere on 5/17/2016, 10:17 am

Granny, I'm very sorry to hear what happened to you.  I've found that as the season progresses, nurseries offer larger and larger plants... that has helped me catch up before.  I feel your pain.  Sad

Sanderson, I noticed you mentioned adding more soil to submerge your tomato stems a bit more.  The MM in my boxes has settled.  I have about two inches or so that I could fill up.  Has this method made a big difference for you?
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Post  greatgranny on 5/17/2016, 1:07 pm

I purchased some starts yesterday to replace the ones that froze.  They seem to be very healthy and I hope that I remember to watch the weather forecast every evening.  Learned my lesson.   The potatoes seem to be slowly coming back.  The  place that I get my starts said that the tomato plants that appear dead may fool us and come back.  Well, that's okay but have two more, just in case.  I had about 3 inches of the stems laid down and covered so maybe...
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Post  sanderson on 5/17/2016, 3:36 pm

@Windmere wrote:Sanderson, I noticed you mentioned adding more soil to submerge your tomato stems a bit more.  The MM in my boxes has settled.  I have about two inches or so that I could fill up.  Has this method made a big difference for you?
I really don't know because I have some great compost this season.  But I am happy to announce that the determinant tomatoes look like a jungle.  Even the indeterminant toms in buckets seem to be doing good.  Two summers ago the tomatoes were hit with the curly leaf disease so last summer was the first year of enough toms to can one batch of tomatoes and salsa each.  Burying the tomato seedlings up to their "shoulders" accomplished 2 things.  The root ball was down where the Mix is the wettest, and they got into the beds faster. I removed all of the leaves below soil level before planting.

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Post  Windmere on 5/17/2016, 5:35 pm

@sanderson wrote:
@Windmere wrote:Sanderson, I noticed you mentioned adding more soil to submerge your tomato stems a bit more.  The MM in my boxes has settled.  I have about two inches or so that I could fill up.  Has this method made a big difference for you?
I really don't know because I have some great compost this season.  But I am happy to announce that the determinant tomatoes look like a jungle.  Even the indeterminant toms in buckets seem to be doing good.  Two summers ago the tomatoes were hit with the curly leaf disease so last summer was the first year of enough toms to can one batch of tomatoes and salsa each.  Burying the tomato seedlings up to their "shoulders" accomplished 2 things.  The root ball was down where the Mix is the wettest, and they got into the beds faster.  I removed all of the leaves below soil level before planting.
Hmm... thank you Sanderson.  My tomatoes look ok right now.  What I may end up doing is adding some MM later in the season when nutrients might be exhausted from existing MM.  Thanks again for explaining what you do.  Smile
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Post  camprn on 5/17/2016, 7:15 pm

My comment isn't about frost. In regard to settling Mel's mix, I just top off with compost and fill the box to the top.

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Post  sanderson on 5/18/2016, 3:28 am

+1   Just top off with compost.  You only make Mel's Mix once, then add compost for the rest of it's life. (I think Embarassed )

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Post  greatgranny on 5/18/2016, 8:53 am

@sanderson wrote:+1   Just top off with compost.  You only make Mel's Mix once, then add compost for the rest of it's life. (I think Embarassed )
I agree.  According to Mel, only a handful for each square.  I do it every time I see a bit of pepping up needed.  Healthy soil keeps away the bad stuff, in my way of thinking.  The plants end up being stronger. 

About the need to fill the boxes - before planting I fluff it up and then after that I decide if I need to add more compost.  Every time I pull up a root crop or clean the boxes in the fall I know that I lose some of the soil even if I am careful to get most of it back in the box.  Sometimes adding a straw mulch during the summer can help also if one needs to retain moisture.  My potatoes always are banked to about a total of 12 inches so that they don't turn green and also make larger potatoes, etc.  For the potatoes I use mostly the pine needle stuff that I rake up in the spring.  It works for me.
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