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It's Gonna Eat Me!!! (Garden Update)

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It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) Empty It's Gonna Eat Me!!! (Garden Update)

Post  Miss M on 5/12/2011, 1:30 am

I'm one of the unfortunate ones with a yard that holds water a lot of the time (except right now... we're actually having a drought). So that is why my garden is so deep. It has a thick layer of coarse sand at the bottom.

Anyway, on to the pics!

I planted most of the garden around March 15-17. By March 24, I had this:

[img]It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) March210[/img]

The tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants were transplants, and the strawberries were awaiting hanging baskets. Everything else is coming up from seed. I already had my potato trench planted way in the back there.

April 7, south end:
[img]It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) April710[/img]
North end:
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) April711

April 16:
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) April110

April 25 -- at this point, we are realizing just how good this Mel's Mix is. The squash plants are larger and producing more already than we ever saw row gardening, and the tomato plants are getting completely out of control. We've never seen tomato plants act like this, and weren't expecting it. I even made cages for the bush beans, because they got way taller than I expected, and were taking over the bed:
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) April210
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) April211
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) April212

May 3 -- I finally realize that there is no waiting until next time to do something about the squash, and I begin tying them to stakes and trimming off their lower leaves:
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May3sm10

On May 5, a Cherokee Purple cluster that I cannot believe (after doing some trimming up on the tomatoes like Acara showed):
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May5ch10
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May5ch11

And, now, May 9 -- the melons, tomatoes, and pole beans are all laughing at me, as they poke their heads through the chicken wire at the top. I'm still working on staking the squash. The corn tassels are at the top and turning to keep going. Most of the potatoes have been pulled up, not for harvest, but because of Black Leg. The lettuce has been pulled up because it bolted, as I expected. The next day, I will notice wilting on one of the yellow squash plants, and on May 11, I will begin fighting the Squash Vine Borers:
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May9as10
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May9bs10
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May9cs10
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May9ds10
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May9es10
It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) May9fs10

We are certainly learning a lot, like how big plants will get when they are grown in optimal conditions... affraid
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Miss M

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Post  jazzymaddy on 5/12/2011, 1:35 am

So lush and gorgeous. I love your setup. And your success is very inspiring! Thanks for sharing.
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Post  duhh on 5/12/2011, 3:25 am

Love your garden! Everything looks great. Although, I think the title for the post should be: We're gonna eat it!
duhh
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Post  Furbalsmom on 5/12/2011, 4:37 am

Just name the garden Seymor (Little Shop of Horrors)

Miss M, you garden is doing so well. Even in August, we don't have enough heat for a lush garden like that.
But, I am very happy for you. Those Cherokee Purples are beautimous.
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Post  acara on 5/12/2011, 6:57 am

I'm hungry now Very Happy

Glad the pruning gave you good results.

Please remember that I am in no way finacially responsible/liable for your additional bread cost, or the talking-to that your gonna get from your DR. when you get busted at your next check-up, for a few too many BLT sandwiches Shocked

It's just an occupational hazard with growing 'maters Laughing
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Post  WolfHeart on 5/12/2011, 7:52 am

WOW! Shocked Shocked Shocked

that is the most beautiful and lush garden I have ever seen!

Again WOW!
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Post  HPartin on 5/12/2011, 8:14 am

Your garden is fabulous.

Heidi
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Post  sarah in the garden on 5/12/2011, 9:12 am

Amazing! What a success!
sarah in the garden
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Post  donnainzone5 on 5/12/2011, 10:32 am

WOW! Shocked
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Post  petals1973 on 5/12/2011, 11:17 am

Wow! Where are you that your crops look soooooooo good?
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Post  dizzygardener on 5/12/2011, 12:59 pm

Holy Cow! Shocked

Now THAT'S an SFG!
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Post  Miss M on 5/12/2011, 1:34 pm

Thank y'all!!!!!

Petals1973 -- I'm in South Louisiana. Unfortunately, close enough to the River to be worried that it all could be swept away by a levee breach. Sad

I doubt things would be quite this far along if we hadn't had an unusual spring. It hit 80* in mid-February, and then proceeded to stay there. 80* isn't out of the ordinary during the winter here, but it is usually an anomaly that lasts only a day or two, and then we're back into the 50s. This year, we've had only a few days below 80* since mid-February.

Acara, not to worry! While I'm sure some of these babies will wind up as BLTs, our favorite way to enjoy them is as a simple tomato sandwich. Good bread, a little mayo, a dash of salt and pepper, and then slab after slab of tomato. This way, it is pure, undiluted tomato bliss! Aw, nuts, now I'm hungry!

Thankfully, I've got ripe cherry tomatoes to hold me over! It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) 485967

Furbalsmom -- that's hilarious! If my uncle hadn't already dubbed it "Noah's Ark", I'd probably name it Seymour! It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) 930802

When we build our second one, it's not going to have the chicken wire. I'll plant stuff in it that I don't have to worry about birds for (the one we have has chicken wire on top, and bird netting down the sides). I'll keep the tomatoes in this bed, along with strawberries and such, and put corn, beans, etc. in the other one.

Seriously, we had no idea the garden would do this! From our previous experience row gardening, our tomatoes would top out at 4'-5' (if we were extra lucky) in September, and not be excessively productive. Except for yellow pear tomatoes. We did quite well with those, for some reason. Squash would be about 2' high and 3' wide. Bell peppers would get a little over a foot tall and give us 2-3 fruits per plant. This was after 6-7 years of amending and back-breaking work.

We are just shocked by this! But in a good way! It's Gonna Eat Me!!!  (Garden Update) 498988
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Post  petals1973 on 5/12/2011, 1:43 pm

fried green tomatoes anyone? My entire cherokee tomato plant is about the size of one of your tomatoes!
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Post  OntarioGardener on 5/12/2011, 3:52 pm

Now I am really inspired! I am in Southern Ontario and will be starting to plant my first SFG tonight! Happy eating!
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Post  ModernDayBetty on 5/12/2011, 7:50 pm

I love love love your set up!! Come help me re-do my garden next year ;o)
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Post  buttaflie143 on 5/12/2011, 9:39 pm

What I want to know is what is in your MM specifically? Very Happy Your garden is GROWING and gorgeous!!! Well done!!! It is posts like yours that keep me from even thinking about giving up. Thank you.
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Post  Kelejan on 5/12/2011, 9:44 pm

I was going to mention that your lovely bed is five squares wide and do you have any problem with that in getting to the middle row of squares?

Then I see that there is just no room for weeds. lol
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Post  Miss M on 5/12/2011, 11:27 pm

Buttaflie, I've got the peat moss and vermiculite, obviously, though my vermiculite is the fine sort. I thought I was buying coarse, and found otherwise when I got home. Rolling Eyes My composts are:


  • Gardenese Compost and Manure - ground and composted organic forest material and mason's sand, and composted barnyard waste
  • Black Velvet Mushroom Compost
  • Black Kow Composted Cow Manure
  • Back to Nature Composted Chicken Manure
  • Back to Nature Cotton Burr Compost
I have since run out of the cow manure (I had extra of all when we finished filling the garden), so when I need to mix a little more, I use rabbit manure, from our meat rabbits. It needs no composting.

Kelejan -- yes it is five squares wide. I did some math in my first thread where I showed our brand-new garden. We knew it would be a little harder to deal with, but we wanted the extra 20 square feet that we got by doing it, while spending no more money (the wood to make it this wide would have ended up cut off as scrap). Shay did inexplicably forget to count the width of the wood in his calculations, so we ended up with what I call "short squares". It's 4'9" wide, rather than 5', and 19'9" long. That's okay, I use those squares for stuff that I would normally plant 16 or 9, and I plant 12 or 6 instead. So it works out just fine. Yes, it is a stretch, but I'm glad for the extra growing room. Would I recommend someone else doing it? Only with the realization that it is a challenge reaching the center squares, and with more knowledgeable and careful planting planning. I had no clue what I was in for as far as plant size, since my previous experience left me thinking I knew how big the plants would get. Boy, was I wrong! Shocked

krazikandiland wrote:I love love love your set up!! Come help me re-do my garden next year ;o)

My beloved Shay says to tell you we'll be happy to, as soon as you come help us build our second one this summer! Laughing
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Post  pesmother on 6/18/2011, 8:14 am

That is the most amazing garden I have ever seen! It is sooo lush and gorgeous! (I am overflowing with jealousy..) It looks like you have it in your backyard? If I may ask, why is it raised up that far? I have thought about making my SFGs a little deeper but worry about complicating matters. Thank you for the pictures! They are definitely inspirational :!:
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Post  UnderTheBlackWalnut on 6/18/2011, 1:27 pm

Hi pesmother - aren't the beds gorgeous? I believe she is the one who gets quite a bit of standing water in the area where her beds are, so she made beds that have a layer of sand underneath the MM to account for the standing water in her area.
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Post  Denese on 6/18/2011, 1:35 pm

so when I need to mix a little more, I use rabbit manure, from our meat rabbits. It needs no composting.

Miss M,

I have a question regarding your rabbit manure. My daughter has 2 pet rabbits with indoor litter boxes. The litter is recycled newspapers turned into pellets. Of course they poo and pee in the boxes. Do you think the ammonia from their urine would cause any problems, if I used it fresh. I do use it, buy I've always composted it first.
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Post  Pduzant on 6/18/2011, 8:39 pm

WOW - Thats looks awesome!!!
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Post  etherati on 6/18/2011, 11:06 pm

Wow, that is completely amazing. I don't even dare to hope that mine could ever look like that - I just don't have the climate for it - but that's such an inspiration. Thank you so much for the pictures. Very Happy
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