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Mark's first SFG

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Post  AtlantaMarie on 9/26/2019, 7:31 am

Either a q-tip or a small soft paint brush...
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Post  markqz on 9/26/2019, 2:45 pm

Here it is, nearly 6 weeks after planting, in all it's (non)glory. I need to photoshop a nicer fence.

I've been doing this crazy thing, where I trim away just enough of the zucchini and summer squash leaves to allow light to the other, smaller plants. That way they won't die completely, and maybe will take up the slack when the summer squash start to fall back.

As you can see, the spaghetti has reached the top of the fence. Hmm ... now what? Run it along the top of the fence? I wish it was as eager to set fruit as to climb ...

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Post  markqz on 9/26/2019, 10:53 pm

The first zucchini -- nearly 20 days early. Odd how that works, because it looks like the rest of the zucchs are going to be closer to on schedule.

The radish leaves have been attacked rather viciously by some little bug. Maybe because of all the shade from the zucchini?

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Post  sanderson on 9/27/2019, 4:59 am

@markqz wrote:. . . As you can see, the spaghetti has reached the top of the fence. Hmm ... now what? Run it along the top of the fence? I wish it was as eager to set fruit as to climb ...

Mark's first SFG - Page 2 F1dBGtW
It will flower with male flowers first, and then with both male and female flowers.  Patience.  It's time to build a real trellis.  The book shows how to make a metal EMC/EMT trellis with a 5'x8' nylon trellis mesh you can buy at HD or Lowes.  Pound 3/8" rebar into the ground and slip the EMC over it.  Secure to the side of the bed with EMT straps.  Or, you can use 1/2 PVC for a 4' span.

2017.  8' trellises for winter squash, cantaloupe. Mark's first SFG - Page 2 West_s11

The Franken-spaghetti squash went to town when it reached 8' tall.  Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Squash14

I use a lot of 1/2 " PVC for my trellises.  It's easy to cut and the elbows are cheap.  This just happens to be a double-trellis for containing pole beans or pole peas. Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Trelli16

This is when I first started in 2013.  Two-wing fasteners. Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Trelli17

This is a trick I learned from Yolos.  Drill a hole in a block of 2"x4" just big enough for a 3/8" rebar to fit through but small enough that the EMC, or PVC can't slip through.  This will help keep a free standing trellis vertical.  Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Trelli15

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Post  markqz on 9/27/2019, 10:20 am

@sanderson wrote:The book shows how to make a metal EMC/EMT trellis with a 5'x8' nylon trellis mesh you can buy at HD or Lowes.  

The trellis I read in the book (or the one simple enough for me Very Happy ) was only 5 foot high. The fence trellis is actually 6. It is nylon netting. Or at least that is what the package says. I wasn't sure what was special about nylon -- perhaps it weathers better?

I'm thinking that if any large fruits develop I could create a rag hammock for them.

Did the 8'ft PVC trellis work out? Could it hold the squash? I like the convenience of PVC better than conduit. I worry that conduit might rust in the outdoors. I'm thinking it would be possible to add in cross-pieces for stability to a PVC trellis, using either pop rivets or nuts and bolts. My locations would not be wind-sheltered. I've done this before with some success. Unfortunately, the PVC I used that time was 30 years old, and cracked easily.

I'm thinking that my next SFG will be 2 x 8 for a front lawn. I would probably add the trellis after I knew something was going to grow. Hmm. With PVC and t-elbows, you could put in a four foot trellis, and then stack a second one on top when the plants grew high enough. This would also mean there was a cross-bar at four feet, adding stability.

Thanks!
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Post  yolos on 9/27/2019, 2:39 pm

I made PVC trellis the first two years but eventually went to using T posts sometimes for a quick trellis but usually EMT for permanent trellisis.

Here is a PVC trellis that I had to put a couple 1 x 1 x 8 supports to keep the trellis upright.  This was a double trellis but the theory works the same if there is only one set of vertical posts.
Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Trelli13

Another trellis using just one set of vertical trellis.
Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Bean_t11

Here is another trellis I use for beans.  It is 8 feet tall.  In this picture I am using the nylon trellis weave but have been converting to cattle panels recently.  I also put up three trellis the first year I used this but eventually removed the middle trellis.
Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Rattle10
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Post  sanderson on 9/27/2019, 5:51 pm

Mark, Don't you wish you could have a garden like Yolos?   I love you  As you can see, there are many ways to trellis.  My nylon trellis netting has been up year around for a few years and has never deteriorated.  Sort of a miracle as the summers get up as high 110*F.  Winter squash does not need a sling, believe it or not.  I do not sling cantaloupes, either.  Nature is pretty good unless it is a large watermelon, in which case, it's best to grow horizontal, sprawling everywhere.

I use a lot of PVC because I interchange parts for different designs.  Nothing is glued together.  I store pieces in labeled plastic sleeves until next needed.  I use string as tension wires to hold the tops together.

This is how one SFG gardener uses a cross pattern with the top horizontal pieces of EMC.   Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Trelli18

I have 1" PVC "cup holders" for ease of installing and removing trellises. Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Table_37

Photo of end of summer showing tall trellises (sans the netting) I used for tomatoes.  Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Winter24

Photo a few minutes later with winter frames for broccoli, etc.  I cover these frames with bridal tulle to keep away the white butter/cabbage looper moth.  Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Winter25

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Post  markqz on 9/27/2019, 7:47 pm

@sanderson wrote:Mark, Don't you wish you could have a garden like Yolos?
Yes, I am trellis jealous.

@sanderson wrote:I cover these frames with bridal tulle to keep away the white butter/cabbage looper moth.  

What is bridal tulle? I do have the white moth/butterflies. They may actually be pollinating my cucumbers. But I think what they really like to do is infest the kale. It's probably time to get out the chainsaw and cut away the two year old kale.

Thanks!
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Post  yolos on 9/27/2019, 11:56 pm

@markqz wrote:
@sanderson wrote:Mark, Don't you wish you could have a garden like Yolos?
Yes, I am trellis jealous.

@sanderson wrote:I cover these frames with bridal tulle to keep away the white butter/cabbage looper moth.  

What is bridal tulle? I do have the white moth/butterflies. They may actually be pollinating my cucumbers. But I think what they really like to do is infest the kale. It's probably time to get out the chainsaw and cut away the two year old kale.

Thanks!
These pictures show bridal tulle.  It is cloth that might be used by a bride.  It is sold by many companies but I usually buy mine from JoAnne's when they have a big sale.  Squash protected from the Squash Vine Borer.  I have to open the tulle every morning to hand pollinate the squash.
Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Squash13

Here is another one.  I use them to keep the Squash Vine Borer from attacking my zucchini.  This zucchini is parthenocarpic so I do not have to get inside the tulle until the zucchini is ready to harvest.
Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Zichin10

Here is another picture of a large bed of brassicas.  I use the tulle to keep the cabbage loopers or other caterpillars from attacking my broccoli/cabbage/kohlrabi leaves.  Because they do not need pollinators, I do not have to get inside the tulle until I am ready to harvest. 
Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Dscn0110

By using Bridal Tulle or other similar cloth, you can keep these insects from attacking your crops but do not have to use insecticides.
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Post  markqz on 9/29/2019, 3:21 pm

@yolos wrote:
These pictures show bridal tulle.  It is cloth that might be used by a bride.  It is sold by many companies but I usually buy mine from JoAnne's when they have a big sale. 

Is there an advantage with bridal tulle over other shade/screen materials? I think of bridal tulle as something that might weather poorly.

Thanks!
Mark
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Post  yolos on 9/29/2019, 4:34 pm

@markqz wrote:
@yolos wrote:
These pictures show bridal tulle.  It is cloth that might be used by a bride.  It is sold by many companies but I usually buy mine from JoAnne's when they have a big sale. 

Is there an advantage with bridal tulle over other shade/screen materials? I think of bridal tulle as something that might weather poorly.

Thanks!
Mark
You are correct that it weathers poorly.  My main reason for using it instead of another type of covering is that it is almost 100% see through.  I love to walk thru my garden and look at the plants growing.  It is easy to see through the tulle.  Other coverings such as agribon are not as see thru as the tulle.  It does not work as shade cloth at all.  I use it only for keeping insects from devouring my plants.

Sanderson can make her tulle last for a few years.  Mine only lasts for one year.  But I cover my Broccoli in March, then when the Broccoli is harvested, I plant squash, and then when the squash starts to decline, I plant Broccoli again and that is not harvested until Nov/Dec.  The clips that hold the tulle to the supports will eventually start to deteriorate the tulle especially when they are removed daily to pollinate the squash.  I sometime use white duct tape anywhere there is deterioration in the tulle.
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Post  sanderson on 10/3/2019, 4:10 pm

I only use the bridal tulle from around Oct 1 when I plant winter crops and remove when they start to bolt in late Feb-March. That means they receive the less harsh winter sun. I have had to replace the tulle on a couple of beds when it starts to look like Swiss cheese. I will have to look into Yolos' white duct tape. Very Happy

The binder clips require hand strength to prevent tearing the cloth. I am mostly successful. Embarassed Also, some of the PVC fittings have little points (from manufacturing?) that can tear the tulle. Joann's Fabrics also has black cargo netting and another netting that is white, which is used for beach bags and laundry washing bags.

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Post  markqz on 10/4/2019, 4:53 pm

@sanderson wrote:
The binder clips require hand strength to prevent tearing the cloth.  I am mostly successful.   Embarassed  Also, some of the PVC fittings have little points (from manufacturing?) that can tear the tulle.

The clips in yolos' pictures appear to be office clips. Those would take a fair amount of hand strength, plus they have sharp edges that can tear cloth. Consider visiting your local Harbor Freight. They have a variety of spring clips that are (probably) meant for holding tarps. Both the handles and the clip ends are typically covered with a soft plastic to prevent tearing. They have spring clips in the 1" to 2.5" inch size. The metal ones are probably a better choice than the orange and black plastic ones -- plastic deteriorates outdoors. Be sure to bring your 20% off discount, which is probably already in your mail. I've seen the coupons everywhere, including the back of Reader's Digest. The main problem is that you need a microscope to see the expiration dates.

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Post  markqz on 10/4/2019, 5:17 pm

You're supposed to harvest the zucchini at around 8 inches. So I keep a stick in the garden trimmed to 8". I swear this was less than 8" last night when I checked ...

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Post  markqz on 10/4/2019, 5:21 pm

@yolos wrote:
Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Dscn0110

By using Bridal Tulle or other similar cloth, you can keep these insects from attacking your crops but do not have to use insecticides.

What is the outside set of PVC for ?

Thanks!
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Post  yolos on 10/4/2019, 6:25 pm

@markqz wrote:
@yolos wrote:
Mark's first SFG - Page 2 Dscn0110

By using Bridal Tulle or other similar cloth, you can keep these insects from attacking your crops but do not have to use insecticides.

What is the outside set of PVC for ?

Thanks!
This was my first attempt at using tulle for insects and plastic for season extension.  So, I first set up the hoops for the season extension on the outside of the beds.  The plastic comes 10 feet wide and fit just fine on the outside.  But the widest tulle I could find was 9 feet.  So I had to cut the hoops down and the best fit was to put them on the inside.  The double hoops also worked real well when we had temps once down in the teens.  I put two plastic coverings over the bed and kept everything from freezing.  This is the only bed I ever did this. I have now found that putting PVC holders on the inside works best for me.
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Post  markqz on 10/4/2019, 9:12 pm

Over the years I've had several tents self-destruct. Once the fabric is gone, the poles can be used to create any-size plant stakes.

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Post  sanderson on 10/7/2019, 4:01 pm

Re-purposing at it's finest! I think gardeners become hoarders because we think, "I'm sure I can use this in the garden, somewhere."

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Post  countrynaturals on 10/7/2019, 4:36 pm

@sanderson wrote:Re-purposing at it's finest!  I think gardeners become hoarders because we think, "I'm sure I can use this in the garden, somewhere."
I'm not a hoarder! I'm not, I'm not, I'm NOT! Crybaby
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Post  sanderson on 10/8/2019, 5:12 pm

Oh, sure, and I'm not either. Razz

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Post  countrynaturals on 10/8/2019, 6:38 pm

@sanderson wrote:Oh, sure, and I'm not either.  Razz
Wanna hear about the water-bottle lids I'm using under the plant trays on the balcony to help with air circulation so moisture can dissipate faster? Hmm? happy dance 

Or, how about the plastic strainers from TV dinners? I use those to keep the slugs out of the strawberries. reading 

Then there's the syrup bottle I use to top off the birds' water. yahoo
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Post  markqz on 10/8/2019, 11:10 pm

They're starting to gang up on me!

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There's two more in the refrigerator ...
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Post  markqz on 10/8/2019, 11:35 pm

@countrynaturals wrote:Or, how about the plastic strainers from TV dinners? I use those to keep the slugs out of the strawberries.

Hmm ... maybe I'll have to try a TV dinner. Don't think I've had one since the 90s. TV was better back then, though.

So, what else ... pieces of hose cut up to make earwig traps,  plastic olive oil containers cut up to make mini greenhouses for starting plants. Ditto for pint salsa containers. Gallon sized detergent bottles cut to make water buckets. Plastic fruit containers now used to protect peat-pot starters. Various mop handles kept in the hope of making more plant stakes. Old newspapers used to start the BBQ.

Not all of this works out. Some of it is just clutter. Rolling Eyes
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Post  yolos on 10/9/2019, 12:33 am

Or plastic ear plug containers used in manufacturing business.  Re-purposed as cloches.
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Post  markqz on 10/9/2019, 6:28 pm

@yolos wrote:Or plastic ear plug containers used in manufacturing business.  Re-purposed as cloches.[/img][/url]

Yeah, but yours looks beautiful. Mine looks like trash. Laughing

I suppose I should ask how one obtains mega quantities of ear plug containers. Debris after a rock concert?

TIL: Cloche
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