Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

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Square Foot Gardening Forum
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First timer and overwhelmed.  Help! - Page 2 Toplef10First timer and overwhelmed.  Help! - Page 2 1zd3ho10

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

First timer and overwhelmed.  Help! - Page 2 I22gcj10First timer and overwhelmed.  Help! - Page 2 14dhcg10

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First timer and overwhelmed. Help!

+16
llama momma
Windsor.Parker
kesugeo
Furbalsmom
camprn
HieronRemade
shannon1
jkahn2eb
tomperrin
CharlesB
ashort
quiltbea
Chopper
wncsohn
landarch
meghory
20 posters

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First timer and overwhelmed.  Help! - Page 2 Empty Re: First timer and overwhelmed. Help!

Post  llama momma 2/8/2012, 6:05 am

[quote="shannon1"] ".... , 1 part fluffed Pete..."

Love this Adorable typo. Yes go ahead and Fluff Pete, don't get too rough with him ! jocolor
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Post  walshevak 2/8/2012, 6:13 am

shannon1 wrote:I know you guys can do it just brake it down into steps. Find a sunny spot, build a 4x4 box, mix your 5 kinds of compost, then mix the magical Mels Mix 1 part mixed compost , 1 part fluffed Pete, 1part course grade vermiculite. Fill box 1/3 water, another 1/3 water, another 1/3 water. Then hardest part is done. Install the grid of your choice and a trilis on the north side for your vines.

Then let the fun start.First timer and overwhelmed.  Help! - Page 2 582897



Good advice. I've been gardening a long time and this is the only method I would recommend for a total newbie. You are more likely to get satisfactory results with the fewest mistake and least amount of work. IF YOU MAKE THE MM EXACTLY Start small, one or two beds , and grow some basics this first year. Lettuce, kale, spinach, tomatos and cukes in the summer. Get the feel of dirt on our hands. Then start expanding. I'm betting by next summer you will want more beds and an expanded fall crop. I spent 2 summers in Chicago and sure wish I had know about MM and SFG. I was real estate challenged and had a lot in pots and a small plot in the yard.

Kay

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Post  meghory 2/8/2012, 9:58 am

These really are some great tips guys! Thanks so much!
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Post  Glendale-gardener 2/8/2012, 10:11 am

I definitely agree with Kay. Last year was my first year SFG and I went a little overboard with my ambitiousness. I went with 3 3x6 beds 4 1x2 beds and about a dozen or more buckets and pots. It was a bit overwhelming. That being said, I still had a great time and plan to expand this year. But I am chilling out a bit on trying to grow "everything" I'm sticking mainly to the stuff that worked well last year and giving pumpkins another shot even though the squash bugs ate most of my plants last year.

Also, Mel recommends putting your garden close to your house if possible. I didn't do this for my large beds because the back of my house faces North but do it if you can. The closer it is to where you spend your time, the more likely you are to spend a few minutes here and there pulling weeds or snapping off suckers and you'll notice quickly if your MM is dry or you have a pest problem.
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First timer and overwhelmed.  Help! - Page 2 Empty Another compost question!

Post  meghory 2/8/2012, 10:41 am

I found an ad on Craigslist for garden soil. It's compost including several things including worm casings is what the ad says. Do you think this will work? How much would I need for a 4x4 box? The more I think about this the more I don't want to have to make my own compost. At least not yet! What do y'all think?
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Post  HieronRemade 2/8/2012, 10:45 am

It totally depends on what the exact ingredients and ratios are...I would contact the guy and ask him for his complete recipe! And just an idea - if what they're advertising isn't sufficient for MM, maybe they would be willing to mix some to MM specifications for you if you asked? You might have to mix in your own vermiculite but hey, it's worth a try!
HieronRemade
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Post  landarch 2/8/2012, 11:32 am

you would need about 3 cubic feet of compost for a 4'x4' box that is 6" high.

here's the math: 4' x'4 x.5' = 8 cubic feet of Mels Mix.

8/3 = 2.67 cubic feet each of Vermiculite, Compost (blend of 5 types), and Peat Moss.

When you purchase soil from someon else instead of making your own Mels Mix, you are at slight risk of them putting something in that you don't know about (clay based soil)...which would totaly defeat the purpose of Mels Mix.
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Post  camprn 2/8/2012, 11:49 am

landarch wrote:you would need about 3 cubic feet of compost for a 4'x4' box that is 6" high.

here's the math: 4' x'4 x.5' = 8 cubic feet of Mels Mix.

8/3 = 2.67 cubic feet each of Vermiculite, Compost (blend of 5 types), and Peat Moss.

When you purchase soil from someon else instead of making your own Mels Mix, you are at slight risk of them putting something in that you don't know about (clay based soil)...which would totaly defeat the purpose of Mels Mix.
Mel's Mix Calculator <~~~click

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Post  shannon1 2/9/2012, 12:03 am

[quote="llama momma"]
shannon1 wrote: ".... , 1 part fluffed Pete..."

Love this Adorable typo. Yes go ahead and Fluff Pete, don't get too rough with him ! jocolor
Embarassed
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First timer and overwhelmed.  Help! - Page 2 Empty A new SFG Lexicon

Post  tomperrin 2/9/2012, 10:29 am

I see a new SFG Lexicon in the making. Tom's Error, Tom's Mix, Fluff Pete... What's next?Wink
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Post  llama momma 2/9/2012, 11:14 am

We're a creative bunch so stay tuned Wink
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Post  staf74 2/9/2012, 1:10 pm

How the heck did I miss this thread??? Posted on my own doorstep too !!!! Sorry Embarassed Meghory. As you can see we have a really helpful bunch here to help you traverse the journey to become hooked on SFG'ning.

Are there any other questions you have that need answering? If not now then at any time. Welcome to the forum and good luck. We're here to help Very Happy
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Post  jpatti 2/11/2012, 11:22 am

Glendale-gardener wrote:Also, Mel recommends putting your garden close to your house if possible. I didn't do this for my large beds because the back of my house faces North but do it if you can. The closer it is to where you spend your time, the more likely you are to spend a few minutes here and there pulling weeds or snapping off suckers and you'll notice quickly if your MM is dry or you have a pest problem.

Mine isn't real close either, but I "fixed" that for myself.

The area that is fenced in to keep critters out is larger than necessary for the boxes. Hubby put one of those giant wooden spools that wire comes on out there to act as a table. A couple folding chairs next to it, and it becomes our morning "coffee spot".

Being me, I can't sit there and just relax if I see something needs done, I wind up getting up and doing it.

In short, if you can't put the garden near you, put you near the garden. Wink
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Post  shannon1 2/12/2012, 6:41 am

Mine is in the front yard right next to where I park. It is impossible not to take care of.Twisted Evil
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