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What A Difference Experience Makes

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What A Difference Experience Makes Empty What A Difference Experience Makes

Post  erbarnett on 8/28/2011, 5:29 pm

My wife and I have always liked gardening and read a lot about plants and most recently vegetables. This research is helpful but can never make up for trial and error with a SFG and plain old experience. I have learned, the hard way, that...



Radishes, at least in our microclimate, do poorly when planted in the spring. We often move quickly from spring into hot summer and the radishes bolt in the hot weather and produce inedible roots and greens. I now plant radishes in the late summer and early fall only.



I cannot grow beets in any season so I will no longer plant beet seeds. I am not that crazy about them anyway and can always get them at the store.



I will never grow broccoli or any of its cousins. Let Kroger wash off the worms, and the yield from a broccoli plant is not that great.



I have learned that nasturtiums do not like Mel's Mix. So I will plant them in our traditional garden in poor clay soil where they always thrive.



Tall plants in a SFG look ugly and need staking, so I will plant only the shorter plants that need no staking.



Turnips ordered from the mail are always too advanced to plant in a SFG. So I will not order them anymore.



I will now plant only those I know grow well, such as any kind of lettuce, Swiss chard, fall turnips, onions, flowers, carrots in the fall, and spinach.



What a difference experience makes!!!
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erbarnett

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Post  pattipan on 8/29/2011, 10:39 am

All I can say is everyone's SFG garden experience is different! And what works really well one year may have totally different results the next. All of our gardens are subject to the weather. I have been gardening for most of my life (that would be 50+ years) and I never stop learning lessons from Mother Nature and now from the good folks on this forum.

I had great success with radishes this spring. I planted them in March. Any later than that is too late even here in the mountains on WV. I've tried beets too...several times, but haven't had much success with them. I will probably keep trying, though! Swiss Chard is in the same family and it does very well for me too.

I have nasturtiums planted here and there in my SFG and they all are doing fine. Those I planted under my winter squash look a little puny, but if they keep squash bugs away, I can live with their look. Smile

Broccoli can be a challenge when it comes to bugs. I have been successful warding off worms with a weekly spraying of Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis). However this year I had a problem with Harlequin beetles. Ugh. The hot weather in July didn't help either. But...last year we were cutting beautiful broccoli every 4 days up through August.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, erb! Nothing is more beautiful to me than the look of trellised tomato and winter squash plants laden with ripening fruit. All my neighbors are jealous! I grow tomatoes to make salsa, sauces and soup, so to me those tomato plants are the most gorgeous thing in the garden!

IMHO...I think you are really missing out on a lot of good wholesome organic produce worrying about how your SFG looks. It's everyone's choice for what they want to grow, of course, but most folks here probably don't agree. When you say "What a difference experience makes!", I think what you are really saying is, "I've tried these for a year or two and now I know what worth the trouble for me to grow in my SFG."

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Post  AprilakaCCIL on 8/29/2011, 11:31 am

I literally have no experience, so far... what I do know is -- I just want me some good grown veggies. If it's grown in a utter mess (don't look pretty)--too bad...as long as I get some good eats. Very Happy I also have to always know that there is trial and error...Keep notes on what did work and what did not -- come up with a plan. And...sometimes understand that there's several factors that come in to play that is just inevitable. Don't take it personal. Very Happy
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Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 8/29/2011, 1:21 pm

@erbarnett wrote:My wife and I have always liked gardening and read a lot about plants and most recently vegetables. This research is helpful but can never make up for trial and error with a SFG and plain old experience. ...

I will now plant only those I know grow well, such as any kind of lettuce, Swiss chard, fall turnips, onions, flowers, carrots in the fall, and spinach.

What a difference experience makes!!!

I would love to know the positive experiences you've also had. Share? Beans, corn, cucumbers, peppers, kohlrabi, pumpkins, tomatoes, etc. Any experience with any of those?
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Post  erbarnett on 8/29/2011, 5:23 pm

pattipan, you are right. I am impatient when it comes to growing vegetables. Therefore, I grow what I know I can grow and what we both enjoy. I hate to see a whole square go to waste for several months, especially since I only have sixteen square feet of space of SFG to begin with. I will probably experiment with a few new plants later on but for now I will stick with what has so far been successful for me.
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