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Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. Toplef10Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. 1zd3ho10

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Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. Toplef10Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. 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.

Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. I22gcj10Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. 14dhcg10

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Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet.

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wargarden2017
Chuck d'Argy
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Post  Chuck d'Argy 9/30/2022, 5:19 pm

Probably because of my career, I need to see the whole picture to make me comfortable about a big project like gardening almost full time for a living. I am pretty simple minded, like I will only run to the store for my better 7/8's with a list if there is more than 3 things to get. Probably because of my inexperience I liked Mel's charts in the back of his books that showed when to start seeds indoors, when to transplant those seedlings outside and when the scheduled harvest date for those plants are. And those dates are based on Last Spring Frost and First Fall Frost. I got tired of trying to find a planting schedule that worked for me. But eventually I found one based on an Excel spreadsheet that was sort of what I wanted. So based on what I saw, I recreated the concept on my computer and plagiarized the one I found shamelessly. The top picture is a basic template of the worksheet, and the lower picture is a partial implementation of the template I intend to use next year. The top picture below is the basic template spreadsheet that I will publish here if someone wants a copy or PM them a copy. The two pictures below are just that, a picture of the spreadsheets not the spreadsheets themselves, so if you can copy those, you won't be able to manipulate them in Excel. Today the point of those pictures is to get some feedback on A) whether anybody else is interested, and B)What additional features you'd like to see, or what do you think is a waste of time if anybody else is interested.  I believe if you have rudimentary Excel skills you can customize this template for your own use.   Please feel free to replicate the below on your own computer if you are so inclined. I threw it together in about 45 minutes.

The top picture is the basic template I'd publish. For me in Pennsylvania this is good. For people like Sanderson out in the desert of California, he may want 12 months, which I will add before publishing.  The point being it's now customizable to fit your needs. After I add December and January, I can delete them or any other month I don't want. Equally each month has 5 weeks allotted even though, depending on which day you chose there will be only one 5 week month per quarter. You can select a week/column in the middle of the month and delete a week for the 4 week months before you start filling in the dates. If you delete a column with a border, you will also delete the border. That will be the basic template you can use and customize as you will.

Below the template is a copy of the template I started to fill in. I thought I'd never plant more than 30 things in a season, but I didn't take into account multiple plantings of the same thing at different times. We can copy and paste additional rows as required. Or delete extra rows if you wish. 

Since I want to start my own plants, I wanted to use the various planting schedules in the back of Mel's book. In my 3rd edition of "All New Square Foot Gardening" the various planting schedules start on page 253.  As you can see my last Spring frost date falls in the week of May 15th. I originally set my dates to have May 23rd as the last frost date in Michigan. But when I was implementing the  template I found out that in western Pennsylvania, where I am now the last frost date is the week before. Oh well it's close enough. I left blank rows for the weeks before and after Spring and Fall Frost dates in the template. But since your your last frost date (and first in the fall) will likely be different, I left the spaces blank in the template. 

In any case I can now look in Mel's book at the Spring Indoor Seed Starting Schedule on page 253 and see that cabbage seeds need to be started 12 weeks before the last spring frost date. So in my case, the Last Spring Frost Date is in the week of May 15th. So I can go to the week 12 column of the gold colored row and see that I need to start cabbage seeds indoors in the week of February 21. Note the automatic conversion of Mel's generic "weeks before" dates to actual calendar dates that YOU entered and need where ever you live. So I would fill in the first blue row in the column under "Vegetable Growing Year 2023" column with Cabbage and in the same blue row in the "February 21st" column or the column labeled "12" in the Gold Row to put "SI" indicating "Start Indoors" during the week of February 21st. "SI" is the abbreviation indicated in the Templates Legend below the chart. Mel's Spring Indoor Seed Starting Schedule on page 253 of the book indicates I should be looking to transplant my cabbages outdoors 5 weeks before the Last Frost date. On my chart that corresponds to April 11th. So I would put "FP" in the week of April 11th.  Then switching to the chart "Outdoor Planting Schedule For Spring and Summer Crops"on page 254, we can see that the "scheduled" harvest date is 4 weeks after Last Spring Frost. Of course that where you have to use your own wisdom on whether to harvest that date, or before or after. That date is indicated with a Green "$" sign per the legend.  The time in-between the outdoor planting and the harvest is indicated with a purple "#".  Do I really need the colors? I don't think so and probably wouldn't use them for myself. But it's a carryover from he chart I modeled after.

Then you can use The same techniques for Peas that Mel says get planted by seed in the ground at the same time as Cabbage seeds get started indoors, and harvested anytime between week 5 and week 9 after Last Spring Frost. 

And for the "Planting Schedule For Continuous Harvest Crops" on page 255, if you want to do multiple planting of lettuce The process is pretty much the same.  Now the formatting in the spreadsheet you see, meaning the column lines, cell fill colors, and all of that sort of thing are pretty fragile. If you cut and paste stuff you're likely to change a lot of that. For this example I did the necessary housekeeping to put it all back in order. Would I do that for myself? Probably not, unless I was bored to tears.

You can do the same process for Fall crops based on Chart "Planting Schedule For Fall Crops" on page 259.

It's not perfect, nor finished. I have gone to the limits of my Excel skills. To do more like create a crop map that auto fills in your crop data to this form is possible, but beyond my current level of skills. IDK if I want to take that on. Maybe in the winter.

And i am about 90% sure the 2 columns labeled "# weeks..." convey the same information as the Mel's weeks before and after a frost date rows and will disappear whenever I get about 99.9% sure.

If you made it this far, thanks for your time. Let me know what you think.


Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. Calend12Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. Calend13
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Post  Chuck d'Argy 9/30/2022, 5:27 pm

Sorry, the charts were a lot bigger when I was editing.  If you click on them they get bigger, almost enough to read.
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Post  wargarden2017 10/1/2022, 5:27 pm

i will post my version of vegetable planning charts tomorrow
they are bit more user friendly than yours.
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Post  wargarden2017 10/2/2022, 11:23 pm

before i post my charts. I want point out five problems with your charts.
in chart two i see the following issues:
1.  you left column and row number artifacts unlike your first chart,
2. you could have uses borders colors to define frost dates they
 would work better than coloring columns  
3. wording cells b1 and a1 needs to be clearer. 
4. the numbers  in rows 3 and 4 needs to be explained better
problems with both charts 
5 might better to post a link to pdf file format instead png files since pdf 
are more easily scalable when enlarged.

 hope these criticisms are helpful.


Last edited by wargarden2017 on 10/2/2022, 11:46 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Post  wargarden2017 10/2/2022, 11:42 pm

I will post blank charts. once double check them 

I also did set predictive it would be bit tough to post thosee  charts since
went bit overboard when made them. since they include all the
dtm range  for each  annual vegetable crop, interval planting,
 interval harvesting. over 6 month period for north america.
they also include charts for succession planting. the real problem 
with all charts are in one pdf that is over 900+ pages. the 
moderators might not want me to post link to such huge file.

i will see if i can link blank pdf default charts tomorrow.
i need check to see if archive dot org will let me post them first.
ttfn
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Post  sanderson 10/3/2022, 3:47 pm

Chuck,    You are enjoying creating a document that is customed to your needs.  If someone wants your chart, they can PM you.  ??

I'm rather a simple gardener here in California.  I watch the weather forecasts to fine tune the dates.  For example, April 1 is the target date for setting out summer starts, slips and sow summer seeds.  The weather forecast can move this to March 15 to April 25.  Mother Nature has the final word unless I want to go through the trouble of putting up the plastic over the bed frames.

I just made an Excel calendar for the garden that I have been meaning to do for a couple of years.  I forgot to add planting a fall round of potatoes in August, and the 2 possible dates for planting garlic in my area.  I also have an excel chart for the seeds I start.  I note the # of seeds per cup, the number of cups and when they germinate.

Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. Seedli41

I recently found this local planting guide that I will incorporate into the calendar.  https://ucanr.edu/sites/mgfresno/files/340806.pdf

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Post  OhioGardener 10/4/2022, 8:09 am

A creative video on planning the layout of plants in the SFG.


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Post  wargarden2017 10/4/2022, 9:50 am

OhioGardener you are confusing placement and scheduling(timing)
the two can be separated in square foot and any other garden system.
just like newton discovered that horizontal and vertical motion can be 
separated in the math of object motions.
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Post  sanderson 10/4/2022, 2:58 pm

OhioGardener wrote:A creative video on planning the layout of plants in the SFG.

This video is pretty good for a beginner.  He explains why he recommends the layouts.

I moved the video to its own new thread, so that it will not get buried in this thread on creating a planting calendar.

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Post  Chuck d'Argy 10/5/2022, 12:22 pm

wargarden2017 wrote:before i post my charts. I want point out five problems with your charts.
in chart two i see the following issues:
1.  you left column and row number artifacts unlike your first chart,
2. you could have uses borders colors to define frost dates they
 would work better than coloring columns  
3. wording cells b1 and a1 needs to be clearer. 
4. the numbers  in rows 3 and 4 needs to be explained better
problems with both charts 
5 might better to post a link to pdf file format instead png files since pdf 
are more easily scalable when enlarged.

 hope these criticisms are helpful.
Thanks for the feedback. I appreciate your input.  I will incorporate 1-4 in the next iteration. In fact item 4 is already done with "Weeks before and after respective frost date."

My problem is, for the most part, I am function oriented and only think about formatting as it contributes to clarity of function. So the Gold and Pink colors in my mind are associated with their respective frost dates. So using Fill is what I used to visually isolate the Spring and Fall frost dates from each other and make those functions clearer to me at least. A border for them would be something I would add later when I am sure changes are pretty well done to avoid wasting time changing them with every other functional change, Here's why I left it off the template. In the template I anticipated that everyone would chose a frost date relevant to where they live. I thought the chances are that will change which months have 4 weeks. So when the user customizes the template to their needs and delete weeks in different months, they would only have to add the week numbers once.  MY personal chart template would have them because as long as I live here the date isn't really going to change significantly. 

The thing I wasn't clear on, was the template is for general distribution. The 2nd picture is my personal template geared to me with a few examples on how I envisioned it's use.  That's what I thought your personal template should be similar to.   It's devoid of most formatting, or should be and will be if it isn't, so you'd be free to format any way you wished without having to waste time undoing what I think is good formatting.

Item 5 is a distribution issue which I haven't really given a lot of thought to yet. This is still a work in process.  But I don't see this template at this time being that burdensome. Having said that, if I ever get around to creating an excel planting map with a "database" of everything you need to fill in this planting schedule, that would definately be an issue.

Would you offer a suggestion on how to make the idea in A1 clearer? To me to identify what year this chart is for, that's as plain as it gets. 

As for B1, columns B & C as they currently exist are going away. The rows 3 & 4 perform that function much better IMO.  As currently employed columns B&C are relics of the chart I plagiarized. The reason I think rows 3&4 are better is because if you use Mel's planting schedules as I do at this point in my life, the weeks before and after rows also provide an automatic conversion to the dates you need to start your seeds, look to harvest, whatever the action is you want to identify on this chart.  You can skip converting the week before or after to a particular date.
  
Again thanks for your suggestions!!!  PLease keep it coming, including this is a stupid idea, I will never use it. That's useful too.
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Post  Chuck d'Argy 10/5/2022, 12:32 pm

sanderson wrote:Chuck,    You are enjoying creating a document that is customed to your needs.  If someone wants your chart, they can PM you.  ??

I'm rather a simple gardener here in California.  I watch the weather forecasts to fine tune the dates.  For example, April 1 is the target date for setting out summer starts, slips and sow summer seeds.  The weather forecast can move this to March 15 to April 25.  Mother Nature has the final word unless I want to go through the trouble of putting up the plastic over the bed frames.

Well please understand, and I wasn't clear on this at all, my bad, I intended to distribute the base template.  The other more detailed one is my personal template that I used to show 1 example of how to use and customize the base template.  And yes PM me, when it's finished (my next posting of the base) when I incorporate any and  all changes from this posting.

And of course, your one, if you need one at all, would change from mine. The dates are only reminders to use your own experience as when to take an action. Perhaps saying a reminder you ought to be looking at doing something would be a better way to say it.
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Post  Soose 10/10/2022, 7:15 am

sanderson wrote:
OhioGardener wrote:A creative video on planning the layout of plants in the SFG.

This video is pretty good for a beginner.  He explains why he recommends the layouts.

I moved the video to its own new thread, so that it will not get buried in this thread on creating a planting calendar.
I like the video and subscribed to that channel. Thanks, OG...  Looking at his channel to see if he has anything on follow-up replantings for those garden plans.

Sanderson, please give me a link to the new thread.
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Post  Soose 10/10/2022, 7:20 am

@Chuck d'Argy  thanks for the templates. I had started something of my own in Excel this last Season...  with formulas for adjusting to the "before and after" frost dates.  I'd actually kind of forgotten it.   I'll have to compare yours with mine.

I really struggle with the whole calendar of planting area of gardening, sigh.  I need to get back to it and straighten myself out about what I might plant on what times of the calendar.
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Post  wargarden2017 10/11/2022, 12:43 am

soose I created a set charts like you describe  with both 
seed start date, average date of germination transplant date, 
day to mature for about 30 vegetable types for northern 
and southern hemispheres and succession cropping
 the whole shebang in over 900 plus    
pages. with the days subdivide in five day increments
as for the formulas they are simple.

for non transplanted crops the formula is 
= seed start date + number of days  to germination + DTM
for transplanted crops the formula is 
=seed start date + number of days  to germination + number of day 
for transplant acclamation(ie hardening)+harvest from days from from transplant

 you only need the planting windows in relation to frost dates to dates to
 set up your harvest estimation date
= frost date -number seed start day before frost.
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Post  Soose 10/11/2022, 7:45 am

wargarden2017 wrote:soose I created a set charts like you describe  with both 
seed start date, average date of germination transplant date, 
day to mature for about 30 vegetable types for northern 
and southern hemispheres and succession cropping
 the whole shebang  < snip >
Understood the formulas, Wargarden, thanks...  my spreadsheets were very simple, didn't get into VB or macros if I remember, just the basic formulas but yours are more detailed than I was doing...   Where did you get your dataset? And are you willing to share that offline?  I've forgotten what you said in the original post. 

This is my big struggle as a newbie (well, one of them), the data, the numbers of days to this and that.  ( I bought seeds last Spring from a "seeds for the south" or somesuch, turns out they came in little ziplocs with extremely minimalistic info - and I have been at a loss because when I'm actually ready to plant, I'll have to stop and research ad infinitum, and it sidetracks me.  Actually, same with the seeds (which seem a bit generic ) from the local feed and seed.
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Post  OhioGardener 10/11/2022, 9:07 am

Soose wrote:This is my big struggle as a newbie (well, one of them), the data, the numbers of days to this and that.  ( I bought seeds last Spring from a "seeds for the south" or somesuch, turns out they came in little ziplocs with extremely minimalistic info - and I have been at a loss because when I'm actually ready to plant, I'll have to stop and research ad infinitum, and it sidetracks me.  Actually, same with the seeds (which seem a bit generic ) from the local feed and seed.

I've had nothing but excellent results with seeds from Baker Creek and Urban Farm. They not only have excellent quality heirloom seeds, but their descriptions give the days to maturity and often include germination days.

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Post  wargarden2017 10/11/2022, 11:25 am

Where did you get your dataset? 


 3 years of research offline and online.
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Post  lisawallace88 10/14/2022, 1:32 pm

I ordered the planting chart from here: https://www.clydesvegetableplantingchart.com/
It works kind of like a slide rule, and I can adjust based on the frost dates for my area. One side has spring veggies using last frost date, and the other is for fall planting using first frost date.

Then I bought one of these for storing seeds: https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B07C8YSWDR?ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details&th=1
It's actually meant for storing photos? But seed packets fit perfectly! (except for really large seeds like corn)

I labelled each box with a "seed start" date on the left side and a "transplant outside" date on the right.  If seeds are to be direct sown, I used only a left-side label.  Then I sorted my seed packets according to the dates for my area (last frost around April 15, first frost in mid-October 7b) and put them in the boxes.  Now when I'm ready to plant, all I need to do is grab the appropriately dated box and get busy!
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Post  sanderson 10/14/2022, 3:06 pm

Lisa, For $6, the slide rule looks interesting. Let us know how you like it when you receive it.

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Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet. Empty Re: Planting Calendar, not a planting map of your garden,,,,,yet.

Post  Soose 10/16/2022, 3:44 am

I have a slide rule somewhere, bought last Winter or Spring. I totally forgot.
Soose
Soose

Posts : 369
Join date : 2022-02-23
Location : North Alabama

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Post  lisawallace88 10/17/2022, 10:41 am

I actually got it a couple of months ago and like it very much.  Easy to use, easy to see (for my not-so-young-anymore-eyes).  For those who have lots of varieties of veggies, it's pretty simplistic (lists things like carrots, corn, watermelon, etc) without taking into account "early" or "late" verieties  but I think it's just right for a noob like me.  Sometimes the planting timetables can be a bit overwhelming, and this breaks it down very simply.  
I also really like that the flips side gives me dates for when to plant things for fall harvest.  We have quite a long season here in E TN and figuring out if/when to plant for fall was again, a bit overwhelming for me.

Now to save the money for a "greenstalk" planter that I've seen on homesteading videos and covet with all my greedy little heart!
lisawallace88
lisawallace88

Posts : 9
Join date : 2022-06-20
Location : 7B Knoxville, TN

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