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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.

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Post  Eve1221 6/25/2012, 7:32 pm

It took me more time that I thought to get all the ingredients needed to make Mel's Mix, measure them out, mix them, and then fill the 4 x 4 frames. Now it is already the last week of June, and I have not planted anything yet. Is it too late, or can I still plant tomatoes, sweet peppers, cucumbers, and such, and still be able to harvest some fruits of my labor? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Smile
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Post  ABGardener 6/26/2012, 1:48 am

You're not alone. I too am starting late. We had a very cool, snowy spring and I was reluctant to plant anything until it warmed up. I'd also be interested in finding out what others recommend. Our growing season is short at the best of times, so I am thinking of sticking with veggies that grow fairly quickly like radishes, spinach, lettuce. Maybe I'll try carrots, beets and beans. I checked the local garden store for veggie plants and found a pepper plant. One year I made a dome support and covered my SFG with a clear plastic tarp (like a little greenhouse) to protect it and hopefully help speed things along.
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Post  walshevak 6/26/2012, 10:37 am

@Eve1221 wrote:It took me more time that I thought to get all the ingredients needed to make Mel's Mix, measure them out, mix them, and then fill the 4 x 4 frames. Now it is already the last week of June, and I have not planted anything yet. Is it too late, or can I still plant tomatoes, sweet peppers, cucumbers, and such, and still be able to harvest some fruits of my labor? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Smile

I would check out what transplants are still available and get something in the ground. Beans grow fairly quickly. Next month you can start stuff for the fall garden.

Kay

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Post  Eve1221 6/26/2012, 10:49 am

What kind of vegetables are good for "Fall planting"?Smile
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Post  walshevak 6/26/2012, 10:58 am

any of the cool weather crops. Peas, broccoli, collards, kale, lettuce, turnips. Find out your first frost date and count backwards to determine when to plant.

check this out
https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t8121-designing-a-fall-garden

kay

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Post  CharlesB 6/26/2012, 11:05 am

I planted numorous things last year the last week of July for my Fall crops. I am in PA so our climate is similar.

If you are planting now you can go buy starts at many places around that get you a good head start. If you want peppers and tomatoes I would do this. My peppers I bought as starts were putting on peppers within a month of planting them.

You can plant about anything right now except for the heat sensitive items. I wouldn't try sweet peas, peas, greens, kale, spinach or lettuce.

I had some extra space and just planted some cukes, peppers, egg plant, kohlrabi and corn.

If you plant seeds or have small starts I would put some shade up for them to get established. A trick my father-in-law from the Philippines taught me is to brake a little leafed branch off any nearby bush and stick it in the ground to shade the seedling. The leaves dry out slowly giving more sun exposure to the seedling each day. This keeps them from getting roasted in the summer sun until they get a root system to support themselves.
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Post  yolos 6/26/2012, 11:31 am

I had some extra space and just planted some cukes, peppers, egg plant, kohlrabi and corn.

CharlesB - I thought kohlrabi was a cool weather crop ??? Am I wrong.
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Post  CharlesB 6/26/2012, 11:42 am

@yolos wrote:
I had some extra space and just planted some cukes, peppers, egg plant, kohlrabi and corn.

CharlesB - I thought kohlrabi was a cool weather crop ??? Am I wrong.

It is but I planted it in a fair amount of shade from a couple tomato plants. I grow them in heat and just eat them while they are small. Grow fast, will be ready in less than 45 days. They seem to hold their own ok in the heat but I wouldn't have them getting blasted by the sun all day. I doubt they would taste very good.
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Post  llama momma 6/26/2012, 11:50 am

Same thing in central Ohio, kohlrabi seems to take morning sun very well then is shaded from carrot tops in the afternoon.
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Post  quiltbea 6/26/2012, 11:59 am

You can transplant tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants now. Eggplants like the heat. Try to get the tomatoes that mature sooner than others, like 60-70 days.

You can start cool-weather crops seeds right in the ground while its hot and the seeds can germinate. As the days shorten and get cooler, the cool crops can grow and come to harvest. They actually prefer fall to spring because its getting cooler, not hotter. Heat makes them bolt/go to seed.

You may be a little warmer than me so your frost date will be a bit later. I'm in zone 5a, but here's my planting schedule so you can get an idea of what goes in before another crop:

now up to 6/25....sow outdoors seeds of broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, parsnips. 6/18 - 7/2 sow rutabaga. 7/2-16 sow carrot seeds. 7/9-23 sow bush beans and peas. 7/16-30 sow turnip seeds. Up to Aug 6 sow Swiss chard. 7/23 - 8/6 sow beets. 7/30-8/13 sow kale, leaf lettuce and spinach. 8/20-9/3 sow radishes. Oct 12th plant garlic sets to overwinter and harvest next June-July.

As mentioned, find out your first frost date and then count the weeks back from that date plus a week or 2 for harvesting, to find out what crops you should plant when. If you have Mel's books, he has charts that make it easier.
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Post  Eve1221 7/1/2012, 9:12 am

Thank you everyone that offered suggestions. I bought sizable transplants at Home Depot choosing from different varieties of sweet peppers, tomatoes, and cucumbers. I planted them earlier this past week of 6/25. So far so good. The taller pepper plants are flowering and a couple of them are growing fruit already. Tomatoes do not have fruit, but are beginning to flower. I cross my fingers and hope for the best.

What concerns me now is how much watering should I do. In the beginning, I watered every day to make sure that Mel's Mix was thoroughly soaked. We have been having a heat wave for the past week or so. The temperatures go up to 90 degrees and above with the accompanying humidity, but no rain. Each day when I go to check on my garden, the soil looks gray, but lately it does not take long for it to change color to black with flakes of lighter vermiculite, of course. The transplants perked up as of last visit, but some of the pepper plants have leaves that turned whitish, probably from overexposure to the sun. There is no shade nearby, and I don't have anything to protect them from too much sun. How often should I water, and for how long? How do I know when I watered enough? Any suggestions would be very welcome.

Thank you.
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Post  quiltbea 7/1/2012, 4:11 pm

I can give you tips on protection from the sun. Get some wire clothes hangers and twist them into a half moon. Place cheesecloth over them and hold it on with spring clothes pins.

Late Planting Shadec11

This protects from the hot sun. Gives the plants a little shade. This method is great for extending the harvest on lettuce, radishes and spinach in the early spring when the temps start rising and these crops tend to bolt. Keeps them cool enough to last a couple weeks longer before bolting.

If its hot and dry, I'd water every day. Or stick your finger 3" down in the soil near the crop's main stem and feel for dampness. If its dry, water it.

I always place this cheesecloth protection over newly-planted transplants for 2 or 3 days as a normal thing. even if they've been hardened off a week or more. I want them protected from the hot sun til they take root.
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Post  Eve1221 7/6/2012, 12:28 pm

Thank you for all your suggestions. So far, my transplants are doing well. I keep my fingers crossed.

Changing the subject, I just wanted to mention that when I was shopping at COSTCO last evening, I was surprised to see in the gardening section, boxes containing 4' x 4' x 6" frames for square foot gardening. I read the information on the box that, among other things, gave the exact recipe for Mel's mix, and instructions on how to set the whole thing up. It sure makes it less of an effort to do Square Foot Gardening. The frames are made from some kind of durable plastic rather than wood. I don't know how much assembly is involved, but the boxes did not look large enough to contain fully assembled units.Very Happy
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Post  Eve1221 7/7/2012, 10:32 am

There is one more question that I have concerning my sweet pepper transplants. They are all doing rather well, and several are already growing fruit. The biggest growing sweet pepper is labeled "Bonnie Green Sweet Hybrid Pepper". The fruit is green at the present time, but will it turn another color (red, yellow, orange, or ?) when it ripens, or will it stay green. Is there really such a thing as a truly green sweet pepper, or will it always turn another color when it is ripe? Thanks.
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Post  MasonGarden 7/7/2012, 10:45 am

Hi Eve! I bought raised garden kits from Costco last year and they worked out great for me. I stacked mine two-high and the only issue that I had was the soil and water running out between the levels, which I fixed with good old-fashioned duct tape! They are holding up very well. Here they are at year 2:

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Post  Eve1221 7/7/2012, 10:59 am

Wow! Those raised beds from COSTCO really look great!
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Post  memart1 7/7/2012, 11:34 am

We don't have a Costco around here, but I know Home Depot has both wood and vinyl raised beds. Does anyone know if they stack well, and if there are any minor problem I should watch for? I am thinking of three for next year. Two I would stack, and the third I would make into a strawberry pyramid by constructing top hats.
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Post  boffer 7/7/2012, 11:40 am

I doubt that they have interlocking parts to hold stacked boxes together, but they would probably stack OK if you used wood or metal to secure the boxes to each other.
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Post  JeanneRamick 7/7/2012, 12:47 pm

@memart1 wrote:...Home Depot has both wood and vinyl raised beds. Does anyone know if they stack well, and if there are any minor problem I should watch for? I am thinking of three for next year. Two I would stack, and the third I would make into a strawberry pyramid by constructing top hats.

The ones that I saw at Home Depot are made from Cedar and I don't think they require any tools to put together because they have grooves that you fit each piece into another. The corners have a flat top decorative piece. I didn't see that they were designed to be stacked. AND .. they are only 1 inch wide and seemed kind of flimsy.

Of course that makes sense when you're comparing to boxes with 2x2 frames.
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Post  memart1 7/7/2012, 1:18 pm

Thanks for the info. I think maybe I'd be better off making my own out of 2" x 8". Then I can stack them and maybe even put some short lengths of 1" x 2" to hold them in line and also be decorative. Thanks again.
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Post  CindiLou 7/7/2012, 5:25 pm

@CharlesB wrote:
It is but I planted it in a fair amount of shade from a couple tomato plants. I grow them in heat and just eat them while they are small. Grow fast, will be ready in less than 45 days. They seem to hold their own ok in the heat but I wouldn't have them getting blasted by the sun all day. I doubt they would taste very good.

I have a few squares that are empty now. I like kohlrabi so I will give this a try! Thank you, Charles, for this idea!
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Post  walshevak 7/7/2012, 5:47 pm

I have 10 of these cedar beds from Home Depot. 1" boards but they are holding up well as tabletops. No bulging on the sides. They come with hardware to stack and they are hinged so you expand to 4x8 or more. I just wish they would get more in stock. Been out for at least 2 months.


http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-25ecodZ5yc1vZ12l2/R-202059471/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&keyword=raised+beds&storeId=10051

Kay


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Post  JeanneRamick 7/7/2012, 9:40 pm

@walshevak wrote:I have 10 of these cedar beds from Home Depot. 1" boards but they are holding up well as tabletops. No bulging on the sides. They come with hardware to stack and they are hinged so you expand to 4x8 or more. I just wish they would get more in stock. Been out for at least 2 months.


http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-25ecodZ5yc1vZ12l2/R-202059471/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&keyword=raised+beds&storeId=10051

Kay

Those are not the ones I saw in the stores around here this spring. Glad those are working out for you!

Here's a link to the ones I'm talking about having seen:
http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=10051&langId=-1&catalogId=10053&productId=202520884&R=202520884
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