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For all the gardeners
Old 06-06-2008, 07:37 PM   #1
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For all the gardeners

Nothing quite like the smell of fresh turned soil and compost, or the smell of your own sweat from raking and shoveling on a 90F June day.
(Yes, you shower afterwards)

Khan - one of the crazed gardeners.
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Old 06-06-2008, 07:39 PM   #2
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Nothing quite like the taste of that first tomato...
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Old 06-06-2008, 07:50 PM   #3
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What are you planting ?
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Old 06-06-2008, 07:54 PM   #4
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I've been thinking of starting a small garden. I like the "square foot gardening" idea (raised beds, custom-mixed soil, plant everything where it can be reached, etc). My biggest problem is the bugs--I really don't want to spray my garden with insecticide to keep them at bay, and I don't want to spend an hour per day picking them off. I've heard about planting certain types of plants together in order to discourage one particular bug or two, but that sounds a little hit-and-miss for my tastes. Is there not some way, with a very compact garden, to put up screening and some sort of tanglefoot or baits/etc to protect the garden from the bugs and critters?

I've had good luck getting things to grow, but it's amazing how fast a slug or two can decimate a cabbage.
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Old 06-06-2008, 07:55 PM   #5
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Tomatoes, summer squash, cucumber, several herbs (in hanging baskets because the local critters are gourmets), pumpkin, cabbage, impatiens, petunias, fuschia, sweet potato vine, sweet peppers, native wild flowers.
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Old 06-06-2008, 08:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samclem View Post
I've been thinking of starting a small garden. I like the "square foot gardening" idea (raised beds, custom-mixed soil, plant everything where it can be reached, etc). My biggest problem is the bugs--I really don't want to spray my garden with insecticide to keep them at bay, and I don't want to spend an hour per day picking them off. I've heard about planting certain types of plants together in order to discourage one particular bug or two, but that sounds a little hit-and-miss for my tastes. Is there not some way, with a very compact garden, to put up screening and some sort of tanglefoot or baits/etc to protect the garden from the bugs and critters?

I've had good luck getting things to grow, but it's amazing how fast a slug or two can decimate a cabbage.
For larger furry critters, you can put up a removable chicken wire cage. I've heard copper strips or diatomaceous earth can keep out slugs.

I haven't had much problems with anything but rabbits and groundhogs.

Have had good results with these folks: Environmentally Responsible Gardening Products that Work – GardensAlive.com
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Old 06-06-2008, 08:09 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Khan View Post
Tomatoes, summer squash, cucumber, several herbs (in hanging baskets because the local critters are gourmets), pumpkin, cabbage, impatiens, petunias, fuschia, sweet potato vine, sweet peppers, native wild flowers.

Wow ! You are ambitious !
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Old 06-06-2008, 08:11 PM   #8
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Wow ! You are ambitious !
A little of each, sort of square-foot style.
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Old 06-06-2008, 08:12 PM   #9
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My parsley and basil are going nuts. My jalapeños and cubanelle peppers aren't doing so hot Something about eating your home grown food. We also got a really good farmers market I sometimes hit on Sunday mornings.
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Old 06-06-2008, 09:01 PM   #10
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We'll see what's left of the tomato plants after the 65 mph winds (thunderstorms, tornado warnings) finish passing through.
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Old 06-06-2008, 09:03 PM   #11
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I'm growing zucchini, patty pan, delicata and butternut squash. 2 varieties of eggplant, basil, 1 pepper (the tag fell off so I don't remember what I planted). Also 3 cherry tomatoes and 6 varieties of tomatoes, some heirloom and some hybrid. Also Ambrosia cantaloupes

I have 3 raised beds that are 8x4 and they are packed. I over planted.....oh well. As long as I get enough of everything I'll be happy.

For slugs, look for Sluggo or the generic Iron phosphate. It can be used in organic gardens so it is safer than some chemicals. For aphids, spray them with a sharp mist of water. For other pests, you can use a little dish soap in a spray bottle of water.
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Old 06-06-2008, 09:17 PM   #12
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You can add a touch of alcohol to the touch of dishsoap to help dessicate some of the bad bugs.
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Old 06-06-2008, 09:32 PM   #13
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You can add a touch of alcohol to the touch of dishsoap to help dessicate some of the bad bugs.
I always knew a shot of whiskey was good for a cold, but I'd never considered drinking soap along with it. But then I never considered eating fish soaked in lye either...
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Old 06-07-2008, 12:43 AM   #14
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Tomatoes, summer squash, cucumber, several herbs (in hanging baskets because the local critters are gourmets), pumpkin, cabbage, impatiens, petunias, fuschia, sweet potato vine, sweet peppers, native wild flowers.
You've got a nice mix going on there, Khan! I've found that having native wildflowers attracts all sorts of 'good bugs', especially all of the various bees and wasps....and the bees and wasps not only help pollinate the veggie plants, but they also feed on the 'bad bugs' like aphids and such. And Braconid Wasps lay their eggs IN those big green tomato horn worms, and the larvae feed on the worm, which terminates the green critter.....with NO chemical pesticides needed. I normally don't use any chemical pesticides in any of my gardens, because I've found that if nature is in control, so are the pests.

My veggies are intermingled amongst my flowers......or maybe it's that my flowers are intermingled with my veggies......I don't know! I have somewhere around 200 different varieties of plants, shrubs, and trees in my gardens and landscape......and I try to major on 'natives'. The veggies this year include:

Early Girl Bush Tomatoes (4 plants)
Small Frye Cherry Tomatoes (4 plants plus a few 'volunteers' from last year)
Better Belle Green Peppers (10 plants)
Sweet Banana Peppers (6 or 8 plants....don't remember at the moment)
Cayenne Peppers (4 plants)
Anaheim Hot Peppers (4 plants)
Jalapeños Peppers (4 plants)
Mesclun (mixed salad greens)
Yellow Onions (continually planting all season - every week or two)
Parsnips
Zucchini Squash (8 or 10 plants)
Garlic
Basil
Parsley (grown mostly for the swallowtail butterfly caterpillars to eat )
Radishes (continually planting all season - every week or two)
Rhubarb
Lemon Balm, Bee Balm, & Peppermint (all to use in iced tea)

I think that's all....I hope! The Early Girls, both Balms, Peppermint, and rhubarb are planted in regular 'ground level' gardens....onions, garlic, and half the Better Belle Peppers and half the Zucchinis are in raised beds....everything else is in containers! It's the same deal with all the flowers, shrubs, and trees, too.....'in ground', raised beds, and containers.
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Old 06-07-2008, 12:49 AM   #15
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KB

I grew Ambrosia last season and they did way better than I ever expected. And they tasted great.

I LOVE gardening!!! It seems to be something that the younger crowd just shuns but I have had an interest in it since I was like 5 years old.

I'm growing sunflowers, red and purple carrots, pole and bush beans, snap peas, honeydew and watermelons, butternut squash, and of course tomatoes...I might throw in a few Ambrosia cantaloupes after reading this thread!

Jim
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Old 06-07-2008, 01:04 AM   #16
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....everything else is in containers!
Doesn't that call for more water, Goonie? Maybe water isn't an issue in Illinois?
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Old 06-07-2008, 09:20 AM   #17
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Quote:
I've found that having native wildflowers attracts all sorts of 'good bugs', especially all of the various bees and wasps....and the bees and wasps not only help pollinate the veggie plants, but they also feed on the 'bad bugs' like aphids and such.
I've watched ladybug larva eat aphids.


Quote:
And Braconid Wasps lay their eggs IN those big green tomato horn worms, and the larvae feed on the worm, which terminates the green critter.....with NO chemical pesticides needed.
Seen that too, weird looking.

By not using pesticides, I've watched caterpillars build their cocoons and become Monarchs (also have some Swallowtail around). I plant extra dill and parsley for the Monarchs.

I see a lot of bumblebees, not many honeybees.
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Old 06-07-2008, 01:19 PM   #18
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I've had good luck getting things to grow, but it's amazing how fast a slug or two can decimate a cabbage.
We had good results protecting ours from slugs with stale beer, sharp mulch and crushed egg shells. Had hard time with butterfly larvae though.
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Old 06-07-2008, 01:42 PM   #19
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I do some indoor "gardening." Mom taught me how to propagate African Violets--four of them have just come into glorious bloom; an orchid bought in bloom in Aug. '07 is still in bloom despite my clumsy maneuver in chopping off a pre-bloom spike--I swear that is the most cost-effective way to keep flowers in the house.
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Old 06-07-2008, 05:33 PM   #20
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All my tropical plants have been sitting indoors and doing nothing since about October; a few weeks ago they started sending out leaves and flowers and shoots, and shedding the old ones. I dragged (drug?) most of them outside this week.
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