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Hello from San Antonio, Tx.

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Post  newbeone on 9/28/2016, 4:28 pm

Hope I'm in the right Forum think I'm in the south west corner, The description also mentioned growing zones 7 & 8 and I'm in 9A pushing 9B We're in a Cold Snap at the present and The thermometer is reading 84 F. in the shade, now I'm not complaining I haven't seen snow in two years.
 I retired for the sixed time in 2013 at the age of 71 kept getting bored so I got Mel's book and got a garden going life was good but at 70 plus and in Zone 4 the winters kept getting colder and longer so the wife and I sold out good buy Up State NY Hello Texas.
 The first Year down here was very educational as gardening first of all, All I thought I knew about gardening I DIDN'T.  We closed on the house in late March of 15 I have a small back yard so I built a bed across it and being new down here I filled it with straight compost and planted some tomato plants, Knowing nothing about the Two growing seasons they have down here. Well by June The tomato Plants were dead or at least looking very ragged, A neighbor Suggested I check the temperature at the bed level it was 145 F. so much for summer gardening.
 So I got another book and started reading Texas Organic Vegetable Gardening by J. Howard Garrett & C Malcom Beck it's a great book for down here.
 So now 2016 I have my Fall garden planted, I know I'm pushing it the bed read 86 F 4" down in the shade  this morning. Wish me luck!
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Post  AtlantaMarie on 9/28/2016, 5:16 pm

Newbeone, I'm not sure if I've said hello or not... Sorry... But welcome (just in case)!
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Post  sanderson on 9/29/2016, 2:48 am

Newbeone, Have you had a chance to add mulch (like straw) on the mix? You will be pleased how much cooler the soil will be. Down right comfortable. Did you use wood for the box? What thickness? I find the 2" (1 1/2") thick wood is a better insulator than the 1" (3/4") wood.

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Post  newbeone on 9/29/2016, 8:38 am

I placed cardboard over the grass then cement blocks along the wooden fence they were like 8"X 16", came out two and a half feet and laid wall retaining blocks two deep for the other wall, Then filled it with compost that's about it, I've been adding peat moss as I go, I have not found course vermiculite,  I may have to  go online for that.
     Yes I have all my friends saving there leaves for me, I have three bags in the garage now ready to be chopped with the mower then I will ether add them to the compost bin or to the garden as a lot of my squares are newly planted or have small plants I'm afraid of smothering them with to much.
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Post  sanderson on 9/30/2016, 12:53 am

Have you checked out our Vermiculite US Data Base?  Medium vermiculite can be used though coarse is maybe the best.  I even used 1:1 perlite/vermiculite when I first started.  Cement blocks and retaining wall blocks means never having to say you're sorry (never having to replace them).   Very Happy Don't add too much peat moss as it does not add any nutrients.

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Post  Docwas on 1/2/2017, 4:19 pm

I've found coarse vermiculite from multiple different vendors. Online, local nurseries, local feed and seed store, and from the county Master Gardener association. Prices between $24 - $40 for 4 cu ft bags. Even if a place doesn't Cary it, they might be willing to order it. Online is the most expensive because shipping costs are based on volume, not weight.
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Post  sanderson on 1/2/2017, 4:39 pm

Excellent! Can you list the brick and mortar stores so Ward can update the vermiculite data base? I can't believe that you can buy 4 cu ft for only $40. Shocked

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Post  newbeone on 1/5/2017, 8:49 am

I bought a four cubic foot bag of vermiculite for $ 40.00 at the Garden center, on Bandera Rd. in San Antonio, Tx. and I just bought another bag at the Stone & Soil Depot #3 on Leslie Rd. ( Name Change used to be Fertile Gardens)  for $29.00 it was damaged and was wet but the price was right.
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