Author Topic: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020  (Read 38074 times)

Roadrunner53

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #650 on: August 09, 2020, 10:22:08 AM »
I am interested in a dwarf cherry or slightly bigger type (Roma) tomato plant that is early bearing for next year. Does anyone know a variety or place to buy maybe two plants? I want to put it on my deck and don't want it to grow 12 feet tall. Something like 24 inches tall would be ideal.

I am looking for something that will bear tomatoes early while waiting for the later tomatoes to become ripe.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #651 on: August 09, 2020, 10:36:57 AM »
My pony express roma types seem to be staying short but some have so many branches they are six feet in diameter.

I harvested 3 liters of purple beans and another 3 of orca beans.  These orcas are the tastiest and have started to rebloom.

Beets are struggling...tomatoes and eggplants and peppers too.  Gave everything a generous dose of fertilizer.  It is supposed to rain today!

RetiredAt63

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #652 on: August 09, 2020, 11:46:47 AM »
I am interested in a dwarf cherry or slightly bigger type (Roma) tomato plant that is early bearing for next year. Does anyone know a variety or place to buy maybe two plants? I want to put it on my deck and don't want it to grow 12 feet tall. Something like 24 inches tall would be ideal.

I am looking for something that will bear tomatoes early while waiting for the later tomatoes to become ripe.

I'm  growing a dwarf cherry on my balcony.  It is a hybrid, Siderno.  Seeds are expensive but easy to start.

Roadrunner53

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #653 on: August 09, 2020, 02:27:34 PM »
Where did you buy the Siderno seeds?

RetiredAt63

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #654 on: August 09, 2020, 05:53:22 PM »
Where did you buy the Siderno seeds?

William Dam at damseeds.com   They are pricey but I had 100% germination, 2 of 2 planted.  Hybrids so I  can't save the seeds darn it.

FireAnt

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #655 on: August 09, 2020, 06:35:25 PM »
Just wondering if anyone has tried this before. I bought store bought scallions and cut the root end off but leaving a little stub of white attached. Then I soak the roots in water till a green sprout appears. Then I plant them in potting mix. I have some giant scallions grown this way. I kept buying store bought ones and kept planting them. They grow so easy and pretty quickly. Love them. You can keep using the same ones over and over! All these years I have been throwing them away!

Yes! Mine are going on their third year :) They started flowering this year so I thought they would go back, but new scallions are growing!

Trifele

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #656 on: August 10, 2020, 04:12:57 AM »
Also, my Malabar spinach is doing well?  Any noticeable differences in how it tastes compared to regular spinach?

Hey @Trudie -- To me, cooked Malabar tastes very similar to spinach.  It holds up much better in stir fries and soups, thanks to its meatier texture.  I sometimes eat it raw, but it took me a while to get used to the semi-succulent-ness;  I'm not used to eating leaves like that, and at first I felt like I was eating a house plant.  It's a fantastic vegetable -- it thrives in the heat, so it fills in that gap between spring and fall greens for us.  And!  From what I read it has a great nutritional profile -- very high in vitamin A and C, iron and calcium. 

@Roadrunner53 -- that's great about your free scallions!  I do that with celery and turnips, works great. 
« Last Edit: August 10, 2020, 04:14:42 AM by Trifele »

Roadrunner53

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #657 on: August 10, 2020, 05:03:12 AM »
Where did you buy the Siderno seeds?

William Dam at damseeds.com   They are pricey but I had 100% germination, 2 of 2 planted.  Hybrids so I  can't save the seeds darn it.

Thanks for the information!

In regard to scallions, does anyone grow them inside during the winter? I do not have a covered porch and don't really have any good windows to put them in. I have florescent lights under my kitchen cabinets that basil seems to like but not a lot of room either. Any ideas on what people do to harvest a little bit of stuff in a small amount of room? I was thinking about doing something like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-s4hDJcPMiw

Roadrunner53

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #658 on: August 10, 2020, 05:57:19 AM »
Where did you buy the Siderno seeds?

William Dam at damseeds.com   They are pricey but I had 100% germination, 2 of 2 planted.  Hybrids so I  can't save the seeds darn it.

I went to damseeds.com and it seems they only ship to Canada. I am in USA. Do you know if they ship to USA? That Siderno tomato plant looks perfect!

RetiredAt63

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #659 on: August 10, 2020, 09:16:04 AM »
Where did you buy the Siderno seeds?

William Dam at damseeds.com   They are pricey but I had 100% germination, 2 of 2 planted.  Hybrids so I  can't save the seeds darn it.

I went to damseeds.com and it seems they only ship to Canada. I am in USA. Do you know if they ship to USA? That Siderno tomato plant looks perfect!

I looked and they talk about supplying Canadian farmers and gardeners, so I am guessing no.

Check out victoryseeds.com   they are in the US and have OP tomato seeds.  They are sold out for this year.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #660 on: August 10, 2020, 09:19:46 AM »
Where did you buy the Siderno seeds?

William Dam at damseeds.com   They are pricey but I had 100% germination, 2 of 2 planted.  Hybrids so I  can't save the seeds darn it.

I went to damseeds.com and it seems they only ship to Canada. I am in USA. Do you know if they ship to USA? That Siderno tomato plant looks perfect!
I don't think they do.  I am sure you could find something very similar at a USA supplier.

Trudie

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #661 on: August 12, 2020, 08:20:14 PM »
Two days ago we were in the path of a derecho ó basically an inland hurricane.  For about three hours we had pelting rain and 80 mph straight line winds.  The destruction was horrendous, but fortunately our home (a condo in a brick historical building) was fine.  And surprisingly, my garden was fine...even my little poly tunnel wasnít too mangled and could be put back into place.

The tomatoes are producing like crazy.  Iím trying to decide if I should just start canning in small batches, or if I should stockpile my paste tomatoes for awhile and do canning in about a week.  I was excited, but these past couple of days of heat have me wondering how much hot indoor work I want to do.  I donít have much freezer space, so canning and drying  are my best options.

Sun Hat

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #662 on: August 13, 2020, 06:13:24 AM »
@Trudie I'm glad that your garden survived and am impressed that your poly tunnel wasn't blown completely away!

I'm happy to be in a similar position vis a vis tomatoes, with lots ripening now. Although I don't have much room in my freezer, I'm bagging and freezing them for the moment until I either need the freezer space or the temperature drops back to a point where I can bear canning.

I have a short season here, but have gambled and planted a crop of beets to follow the cabbages that I harvested in July (it's low-stakes gambling). They're already sprouting, and I have high hopes that I'll get at least little beets before the frost hits (I hope to have a month or so before then).

Indio

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #663 on: August 13, 2020, 11:14:58 AM »
@Sun Hat I know what you mean about standing around a pot of boiling water. The humidity is so high the last thing I want to do is heat up the house. I tired canning outside using the gas grill but it isn't hot enough to get the water boiling. Thought of trying to can on my camping cook stove but the fuel is so hard to find in my area, while propane is easily available.

I'm out of freezer space so I'm using the deydrator to preserve some of the veg. Set it up in the basement since it's so much cooler than the rest of the house. Made zucchini chips with olive oil and fajita seasoning. They were so tasty that they were eaten right away. The bland, unseasoned zucchini chips will be used in soups this winter.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #664 on: August 13, 2020, 12:16:32 PM »
My paste tomatoes are just starting to come....

I hear y'all about the hot kitchen.  I bought a gas ring for maple syrup and it is fantastic for canning - I just need a heavier bottom canning kettle to be truly set.  I have also used a fairly inexpensive IKEA pot on my induction cook top.  Again, to be good for tomatoes, I need to get a lower rack inside to allow for enough water over the jars.  The brilliant part of the induction cook top, I can plug it in on the front porch.

I ordered a dehydrator off amazon.  It is going to take ten days to arrive.  I need it now - the second crop of basil is perfect, right now.  The first attempt at drying in a paper bag in the greenhouse resulted in a light brown/grey herb.  It seems ok but doesn't look particularly appetizing.

I made salsa verde out of 8 tomatillos.  It is so fresh and delicious.  I have had really mixed results with cilantro so I am trying again.  It would be a shame to have too many tomatillos and no cilantro.
The green beans are the much vaulted orca beans.

YttriumNitrate

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #665 on: August 13, 2020, 08:22:35 PM »
Here in northwest Indiana, my tomatoes are starting to come in full force. I'm growing roma and tasty treat this year, and it will probably be the last year for romas. I get that they are primarily used for sauces, but goodness are they ever bland compared to the tasty treats.

Also, after three years of trying we've finally got pumpkins growing in the yard. Planting pumpkin starts in the yard resulted in lots of pumpkin leaves, but no pumpkins. Last fall, we just let the Halloween pumpkins rot where they were (deer ate them too), and now we've got at least a dozen pumpkins in three separate pumpkin patches.

Trifele

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #666 on: August 14, 2020, 03:38:28 PM »
We did our second harvest of pears today, and they are looking good.  The red ones are Ayers, and the green ones are Kieffer.  We'll keep picking, a basket at a time until we can't keep up with them.  Then I'll start puree-ing, freezing, and -- in the case of the Kieffers -- wrapping them for root cellar storage.  If I get really ambitious I'll try making pear cyser.  I've been meaning to do that for years. 
« Last Edit: August 14, 2020, 03:40:02 PM by Trifele »

TomTX

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #667 on: August 16, 2020, 06:35:48 AM »
Tomorrow is a big harvest day.  Itís been in the mid seventies, which is very comfortable for Iowa in August.  Iíve had tons of snacking tomatoes, kale, onions, and herbs.  Other than kale and tomatoes nothing has been producing heavily.  I suspect it has to do with our hot, dry weather.  Since this is our first year on our garden plot, weíve spent a lot of time preparing the site.  Next year we can grow more efficiently and take better advantage of cool season spring weather.

I harvested a few Brussels sprouts today and roasted them.  This is the first time Iíve grown them.  They tasted okay, but Iím wondering if I should wait until cooler temps to harvest them in the hope that they will be sweeter.

Also, my Malabar spinach is doing well?  Any noticeable differences in how it tastes compared to regular spinach?

There is a kind of spinach flavor, with a overlay of being thicker and some Okra characteristics.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #668 on: August 16, 2020, 06:37:01 PM »
@Trifele Those are beautiful pears.

We need rain badly.  We got a little sprinkle but barely wet the ground.  I was worried I was losing the crop so started watering, but Mother Nature does a much better job!


RetiredAt63

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #669 on: August 16, 2020, 09:10:57 PM »
@Trifele Those are beautiful pears.

We need rain badly.  We got a little sprinkle but barely wet the ground.  I was worried I was losing the crop so started watering, but Mother Nature does a much better job!

We had a downpour this afternoon, showers tonight continuing into tomorrow.  We really needed the rain, I  hope it rained equally hard at the garden.

My bush beans are nearly finished but the pole beans are starting production.  So much easier to pick, and each bean is so much larger.  Next year I will still plant some bush beans because they are earlier, but will definitely plant more pole beans, on taller supports.

Recycling: the cardboard carton my freezer came in is now "mulch" at the garden.  It should keep the weeds down.

Trudie

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #670 on: August 16, 2020, 09:25:24 PM »
Spent some time today cleaning up and preserving my latest veg haul.  I blanched two ginormous bunches of kale and tossed it in the freezer.  Iím now wondering how else to fix it, other than throwing it in soups.  I prepped some Malabar spinach for a salad.

The paste tomatoes and small cherries are being slow roasted and turned into sauce in a food mill.  Iím kind of shocked at just how many it takes to make sauce and am now wondering if I will be canning much.  Depending on how the rest of the season goes I may end up making chow chow or something.

I guess I would say that so far my garden has been an eat as you go endeavor.  Iím of two minds about this... on the one hand itís nice to have enough plus a little extra to share.  On the other hand, I think we should be trying to produce enough to have lots preserved.  But then when faced with it, I kind of dread the work of anything that canít be done in small batches.  After all, weíre just two people.

Last night I created a slow roasted sheet pan of yellow summer squash, onions, cherry tomatoes, and sweet red peppers with Italian seasoning and took it to a family cookout.  Everyone raved, and I was shocked at how much produce I used in just one dish.

Our onions and shallots were fully cured, so I finally cleaned them up and stored them.  They wonít last long.  We use a ton of them in cooking, and imagine they will be gone in another couple of months.  This bums me out.  I know onions are cheap and easy to buy, but we love every manner of them and next year want to devote more space to them. 

This is our first year gardening in a new location and Iím learning a lot.  Some plants (kale and tomatoes) have produced heavily.  But, itís been hot and weird this summer, so our cool season crops have been nothing to write home about so far.  Weíre doing second cropping, learning to contend with bunnies, and trying to figure out what warrants more space next year.  Iím also growing lots of veg I have zero experience with.

« Last Edit: August 16, 2020, 09:27:37 PM by Trudie »

Sun Hat

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #671 on: August 17, 2020, 06:42:37 AM »
@Trudie

Frozen kale is my favorite go-to winter vegetable because you can just toss it in to pretty much any dish as an instant vegetable. You can saute it, add it to soups, rice and beans, scrambled eggs, tomato sauce, stir fries, curries - pretty much anything that isn't a dessert. My cooking isn't gourmet, but you won't see me get scurvy in the winter!

Did you know that you can also dry kale? Putting it in the dehydrator is even less work than blanching and freezing it.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #672 on: August 17, 2020, 09:43:07 AM »
I love kale chips - it meets my need for a salty snack just fine.  I would think it would keep for a while if dried enough.

My garlic crop is cured but a large part of the harvest is not going to store well.  It is going mushy and mealy.  Should I just toss it now?  I left it too long in the ground. 

This fall I am going to start with seed garlic in case this is a disease thing.  I am also going to plant it out at my parent's farm where there was never been any garlic.  I decided to reserve my city garden for crops that I harvest daily and all storage crops will go into the farm where picking can happen once a week.  I have staying on top of the weeding so I think I can plant onions, garlic, carrots, beets and the black beans out there with the potatoes, curcubits and roma tomatoes. 

My city garden has a soil problem.  This fall I am going to have to undertake a massive amendment effort.  I used a commercial fertilizer on a bunch of the struggling tomatoes and peppers.  Boom, they all perked up. 

My plan is to:
dig a trench 18 inches wide and six inches deep
fill trench halfway with leaves, manure, compost, straw
place half of excavated soil back
add another couple of inches of well rotted manure
add remaining soil. 

I will try to do all the rows I currently have (12) but if this is too much, I will start with a few and work my way across the garden.

Good news: all the seedlings that I plunked into the ground beyond the garden fence are thriving and setting fruit.  They look better than the ones in the garden which is demoralizing on one hand, but at least I might get a few more tomatoes!

Sun Hat

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #673 on: August 18, 2020, 06:34:34 AM »
Kale chips never seem to last long in my house (mostly because I eat them up). Does anyone have any tips on how to keep them from absorbing ambient humidity and losing their crispness in storage?

I also dry kale plain, and without the oil, they dry to a brittle paper which keeps really well and makes a good addition to soups and rice dishes. They're much, much less exciting to snack on though.

Frugal Lizard, I'm sorry to hear about your soil. Your amendment plan sounds good, but like a lot of work. Pace yourself and think of the awesome muscles that you'll build!

Trifele

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #674 on: August 19, 2020, 01:55:54 PM »
Paraphrased from the Ball Book of Canning and Preserving:

In a food processor or blender, add:

1 garlic clove (I used 3 because no one gets to tell me how much garlic is too much)
1 hot green pepper
1 tsp grated ginger

Blend until it's all in really little bits, then add:

1c mint
1c cilantro
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 c lemon juice
1/2 tsp cumin powder (optional)

Blend until smooth. You can add a wee bit of water if necessary. I've also followed a recipe that calls for apple cider vinegar, so if you don't want to literally water down the goodness, add a splash of that. Pour/smear into an ice cube tray. Clean food processor with naan (or your face if you can get it in there - just don't waste the goodness).

So I just made a batch of this using peppermint @Sun Hat -- and I cannot. stop. eating. it.  So delicious!  I'm smearing it on naan and topping with slices of avocado.  YUMMMMM . . .

Sun Hat

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #675 on: August 19, 2020, 05:30:21 PM »
@Trifele I'm so glad that you're enjoying it as much as I do. I've been encouraging my mint to grow faster just so that I can make more! Next year I have to try growing cilantro too.

Trifele

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #676 on: August 20, 2020, 02:19:00 AM »
@Trifele I'm so glad that you're enjoying it as much as I do. I've been encouraging my mint to grow faster just so that I can make more! Next year I have to try growing cilantro too.

Me too!  I didn't grow cilantro this year and I regretted it.  There are two or three things I make regularly with cilantro, so next year I need a good size patch of it. 

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #677 on: August 25, 2020, 02:25:21 PM »
How is it going gardeners?  Anyone having good luck with fall harvest crops.  We are having a lot of heat and little rain so most of the sowing that I have been doing have not been very successful. 

The pole beans have been crazy productive.  Since we can barely keep up, I have been letting some of the beans ripen to the point that they will be eaten as shelled beans.  Last night I added 1/2 cup to fried rice last night.  They were delicious.

Trifele

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #678 on: August 26, 2020, 04:24:24 AM »
Going well here!  Most of the fall crops are doing well.  We've been lucky with some moderate weather -- not too hot or dry.  The sugar snap peas look really beautiful, as do the kale, spinach, chard, and lettuce. The carrots look healthy, but they're growing very slowly for some reason. 

Exceptions are the cabbage (which is being munched to death by the cabbage worms, way worse than in the spring) and the pak choi, which is falling victim to the flea beetles.  I guess it was just too early for those two?  I'm going to do a succession planting this week and see if they do better.  Ah well, that's why I planted a big variety this fall -- you gotta figure not everything will do well. 

Rosy

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #679 on: August 27, 2020, 09:29:22 AM »
Too damn hot to garden - can't wait for late October to start living in the garden again.

AVOCADOS - harvest time!
Ripe and glorious - from our 40ft - 70yr old tree.
We'll be sharing with the neighbors and co-workers.

BANANAS - one dwarf and one full size
Tried for the first time this year - growing well but no sign of bananas yet.
The Vanilla Ice Cream Banana Tree grew from two inches to 12 feet since April - and drumroll - has a two foot pup, super exciting:).
The dwarf banana grew from two inches to three feet so far - will reach six feet, no pups - yet.

MORINGA TREE
WOW - grew from 12 inches to over 20ft since April. Turned into a slim, pretty, lacy leaved tree.
Lovely scented creamy white blooms and plenty of seeds.
My plan is to harvest and dry the leaves from one branch (testing) and save the seeds - in the next couple of weeks.

TROPICAL BLACKBERRY JAM BUSHES
Grew between 4 inches to 8 inches since April.
Talk about slow growers, I do hope they will survive the summer - started out with 12? seedlings - four are still alive and looking good.

AFRICAN BLUE BASIL - Bees love it and it smells heavenly!
I now have seven bushes - three mega-sized four to five foot bushes and four regular-sized - two to three foot.
All planted from 4 to 6in baby plants taken from the six year old mother plant.
You can hear the buzzing of the uber gentle bees whenever I cut a bit for cooking.

TAPIOCA PLANT - CASSAVA - YUCA (Manihot)
My, what a pretty plant this is. Lovely bright green and cream, variegated, umbrella leaves with deep-red side branches.
Yes, you can eat the roots and it is apparently a huge crop around the world, but I planted it for it's beauty. Grew from two inches to three feet.
I noticed how now that the heat index is over 100 it droops in the day time - I really want to keep it alive and hopefully grow more next year.

It was rather expensive since they touted it as a rare tropical plant but Youtube says it is easy to propagate, just stick the main stem in water and be sure to protect it from the cold. I'd like to try several in different locations in the garden - maybe I can find the perfect spot to make it happy.
Fingers crossed it will live until October even if I have to baby it a bit in it's first year.

This season so far:
The weeds have taken over and everything needs cutting, attention or water. I lost 50% of the new plants that I tried this year, I'm not happy about that.
I gained some lovely perennial beauties and even a few rarities - so it is not all bad.

All in all I think my experimentation paid off, but I suppose if I had a sprinkler system and more help it might actually look great:) despite the heat.
The TARO plants I dug up and replanted were a huge success and are now between five and seven feet.

Looking back, I tried over one hundred new varieties from trees to bushes to flowers and veggies, fruits and rare tropicals.
So much fun:).
Next round will be more about duplicating successes, playing with a ton of seed packages, trying other varieties of passion fruit since I killed my two new plants and finding the honeysuckle plants I want. The rest will be - replanting, dividing, cuttings.
Coffee and Nuts were on my list but didn't happen this year, but they will top my very short wishlist of new things to try this fall and next spring.

LOOKING FORWARD TO FALL
Year two in my newest garden area might just turn into a tropical haven - I can't wait.
Just trying to keep things alive until then.

How does your garden grow? ..... :).

Trifele

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #680 on: August 29, 2020, 02:16:21 PM »
Wow @Rosy, that is a massive amount of experimentation this year -- love it!

I have a tree question for you and everyone else:  So I have a three year old dwarf Japanese persimmon tree that didn't come through the winter very well.  It leafed out in spring, but then we were hit with a freakishly late freeze and the whole tree died to the ground.  Then in late spring it sent up shoots and made leaves from the roots.  It's a little thing now, about a foot tall.  I realize we are right at the edge of where it is possible to grow these guys climate-wise, but I have another one that is doing well so far, so I'd like to keep the little damaged dude alive if I can.   

I think I have two choices for saving the damaged tree, (1) leave it in the ground and just insulate it to the max this winter, try to bring it through without any further top death, and (2) dig it up, put it in a big pot, and overwinter it inside.  Nurse it along and then re-plant it outside next spring.

What do you all think?

Rosy

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #681 on: August 29, 2020, 05:33:34 PM »
@Trifele - I'd leave him in the ground and uber protect him - give him some extra TLC until he is strong again.
My thinking is he must like the spot or he wouldn't have resprouted so let the roots get stronger and leave him be.

Since my last post
We have almost ripe PAPAYAS!!!
In April I planted two in the ground and one in a pot. They all look good.
The one in the pot is still quite small - maybe three feet, the other in the ground is tall about ten feet - no sign of papayas.
The one with our first papayas has a thicker trunk and immense leaves - it is ten feet plus.
These were plant babies from the neighbor who got them from her dad who is an avid gardener. None of hers - she planted five have papayas yet.

I'll see about posting a pic of the Papaya tree - I feel like a proud mom showing off her new baby.

Looking back I did more experimentation this spring than I realized. Bonus - I still have enough seeds for fall and next spring.
I discovered that my favorite Zinnias reseeded themselves en masse - so now I have to figure out how to transplant the seedlings without killing them.

Mrsweisass

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #682 on: August 29, 2020, 08:19:59 PM »
We got our very first egg today! 20 weeks after our chickens were hatched, and boy did they let out a little dance party when it happened, too! 

Trifele

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #683 on: August 30, 2020, 04:01:50 AM »
We got our very first egg today! 20 weeks after our chickens were hatched, and boy did they let out a little dance party when it happened, too!

Congratulations!  That is special.  Lots of us have chickens, so you're in good company here @Mrsweisass!


Thanks for the tree help @Rosy!  I will do that.  And can't wait to see pictures of the papaya tree -- so cool!

Reader

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #684 on: August 30, 2020, 05:42:51 AM »
AVOCADOS - harvest time!
BANANAS - one dwarf and one full size
MORINGA TREE
TROPICAL BLACKBERRY JAM BUSHES
AFRICAN BLUE BASIL - Bees love it and it smells heavenly!
TAPIOCA PLANT - CASSAVA - YUCA (Manihot)
Coffee and Nuts were on my list but didn't happen this year, but they will top my very short wishlist of new things to try this fall and next spring.

wow. this is amazing. you have a veritable food forest!
what recipes do you use with moringa? isn't it really difficult to process coffee fruits/beans?

Rosy

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #685 on: August 31, 2020, 02:25:23 PM »
Papaya tree - planted in April
The three bottom ones look ready for harvest.

Look at all those blooms turning into papayas:)

[img][/img]
« Last Edit: August 31, 2020, 02:28:10 PM by Rosy »

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #686 on: August 31, 2020, 02:49:34 PM »
Wow - those look stunning

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #687 on: September 01, 2020, 11:19:15 AM »
I've got horsetail popping up in my garden, so the battle starts. I'm going to be doing a massive remediation effort this fall to create more healthy soil which horsetail doesnt like.

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #688 on: September 02, 2020, 11:40:22 AM »
It's fun reading about everyone's experiments and successes! Those are beautiful papayas forming, and congrats on the chicken success @Mrsweisass!

Several things ripening here. Miracle fruit (turns sour food sweet):



Banana progress the past three weeks, from flower to fruit formation:

     

@Reader I use morninga leaves fresh in smoothies. Apparently every part of the plant can be used for something, lots to experiment with!

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #689 on: September 02, 2020, 01:28:51 PM »
Wow, @Roots&Wings - your bananas look fantastic. I'm green with envy:).
Do bananas fruit in the first year? What, how, and how often do you feed yours?
Your pics made me feel even more excited about our first crop.

@Mrsweisass - congrats on your first eggs!
I would love to have some chickens or other critters in the yard, but it is more daily work than I want to do.
Gardening is all I can handle.

@Reader - the fresh flowers from the Moringa make a lovely tea. You can sprinkle dried leaves ontop of your food or into your smoothie.
Fresh leaves can be part of a salad. I like that - salad on a tree:).

The long seed thingies look like green beans on steroids and you can fix them like green beans as long as they are green (you have to scoop out parts) when you let them dry on the tree you can then use the brown seeds to roast - supposed to taste like peanuts.
You can dry the seeds or plant a new tree.

In our climate it seems to bloom all year around. I really like the scent of the flowers so I want to try to make flower water - like Rosewater only this will be from Moringa.

I bought a small book which includes many Indian and African recipes for stew and sauces ... I bought it because I wanted info about how to grow and harvest Moringa which was well presented, but it also has a fair amount of general info, incl a couple of medicinal recipes and recipes for other products.
The author is a grower and involved with non-profits around the world - so the book is slanted that way.

Moringa by Sanford Holst - published 2011 - I would recommend as an introduction because it covered all the bases. It is a simple book, but I found it very helpful and practical. 

Thanks for asking because it made me read up again on what I need to do and I definitely need to cut it down to six feet for one thing. The book explained how to cut and shape the branches too.
Maybe I will try to make some Moringa powder - we'll see.

... most of all I can't wait to use it to filter water - more experiments. This is really an interesting tree.

Roots&Wings

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #690 on: September 03, 2020, 06:30:20 AM »
That is fantastic moringa information @Rosy, I've learned so much here. Also read somewhere it can be used as plant fertilizer. And water filtration? Hope you keep us posted if you try this!

Do bananas fruit in the first year? What, how, and how often do you feed yours?
Your pics made me feel even more excited about our first crop.

The first crop is very exciting, this'll be crop 5 for me (and crop 6 flower is just starting!) and I still get excited :) Mine fruited after 1.5 years starting out as small 1' plants, this probably varies by variety and conditions, not an expert, but they seem to do really well here.

What I've heard is the best things to feed a banana are 1) another banana (peels, chopped leaves) 2) wood ash and 3) urea. I try to do at least one of those once a month or so, but don't always remember, and now have 15 patches of bananas (the pups multiply fast..."going bananas" is a real thing, this is year 3).

Need to cut off the flower next (this can be eaten too). Be prepared with something to prop them up, they'll topple over from the weight of the fruit (40+ lbs), I just use scrap 2x4 lumber.

One other plant/ experiment I'd like to try is growing yaupon holly (North America's only native caffeinated plant, related to yerba mate) for tea. The local yaupon tea I've had is really good, loaded with antioxidants. Heck, even fancy Harney & Sons is making yaupon tea. Always more to learn :)

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #691 on: September 03, 2020, 10:48:44 AM »
@Roots&Wings thanks for the information on the bananas. My garden friend told me she ended up with 21 plants incl the pups but apparently she ended up with a disease effecting the fruit - so they haven't eaten any, although they produced well.
She uses lots of chemicals - I garden organic, so I wonder if I should even ask her for a pup. I thought it would be fun to have different varieties, but I don't want to bring disease into my garden.
 
Yes, Moringa does make a great fertilizer - which is good to know since I doubt I'll eat all the leaves on the tree:). We've gotten really good at making compost and right now we have lots of Avocados falling from the tree that the critters have munched on - so I think I'll feed the papaya and the bananas with that.

Here are three shots of our Moringa Tree to give you a better visual.

Bees love the Moringa - this one is a rather large one, not like the small slightly fuzzy ones that are like a buzzing cloud on the Basil bushes.
A ton of different insects like the Moringa - although it seemed like it took about three months before everyone discovered it.


See the fat, long seed pod? Not all of them get this fat, some seed pods are skinnier.
My book said that no matter how many flowers bloom on one branch only one of them will turn into a seed pod.
That means I can use the others for bouquets and to make flower water.


This is the top of the tree. I feel bad about cutting it in half,
but the book says if you trim it properly you can train it into a different shape - wider,
with more branches. Uncut it would reach 40ft.








Roots&Wings

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #692 on: September 03, 2020, 11:03:40 AM »
That is gorgeous @Rosy, I had no idea moringa flowers were so pretty! This is a new plant for me this year.

Sounds like a good move to pass on your neighbors bananas, I don't use any chemicals either (if your neighbor is growing Raja puri, I believe they are known to have some disease issues, Dwarf Cavendish are the ones that have fruited for me). Hoping your banana does well!
« Last Edit: September 03, 2020, 11:06:11 AM by Roots&Wings »

Reader

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #693 on: September 04, 2020, 07:10:49 AM »
Thanks @Rosy  and @Roots&Wings for the moringa tips! Have ordered the book, and would try to see if i can grow a container version of the tree. i live in an apartment, and a room with a particularly sunny window where i grow my basil and mint. will see if i can get a moringa cutting and go from there.

Rosy

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #694 on: September 04, 2020, 07:26:41 AM »
@Reader - it will grow just fine in a container, but you might not get any flowers, therefore no seed pods either.
Give it as much sun as you can - it loves the heat.
If you can get basil to grow in that window - the Moringa will grow for you too:).

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #695 on: September 07, 2020, 07:19:59 AM »
Down here in South Mississippi weíve been experimenting with container gardening in the tiny back yard of our townhouse.  Mostly in 5 gallon buckets. One thing I have noticed is that lots of plants that say they need full sun still get crushed by ours anywhere close to the summer so Iíve started reading ďfull sunĒ as ďfull sun somewhere farther northĒ.  Weíve just been trying things to see what works well for us.  Sweet potatoes, peppers, and tomatoes have done the best so far although weíve tried a bunch of other stuff with mixed results - started another round seeds (indoors) yesterday - cooler weather plants this time.  Also trying out a worm bin but itís going slow sincethe population is small since I just add worms when I find them in the backyard.  All-in-all, it has been a rather expensive but fun way to have fresh jalapeŮos and tomatoes available with inconsistent timing.

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #696 on: September 07, 2020, 11:26:22 AM »
My one tomato plant was looking very sad and yellow, and possibly diseased.  As a precaution, I picked all the green tomatoes and canned salsa verde (I know traditionally it should be tomatillos, but I have a recipe in my book that uses green tomatoes so why not?).  Now if the plant dies, I won't be losing any fruit.

I've been getting a slow but steady stream of strawberries - not enough to do anything with, but they're certainly delicious to eat one by one.  I've also made several pints of pesto from the basil plants.

My watermelon vines have given up.  I can't blame them, after being stepped on repeatedly by careless contractors.  They crushed all the baby fruits, and I think it's too hot for the plant to put out more flowers.  The cucumber plant is still drying in spite of some of the same treatment, I think we'll get at least 1-2 cucumbers off it.

I also seeded some more chard and beets for a fall crop of greens.  Hoping it's not to early and hot for good germination, but we'll see.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #697 on: September 07, 2020, 11:50:50 AM »
I am having very poor luck with fall crop seed germination.  We had some more rain last night, so hopefully something sprouts.  The late July beets and greens were a bust. 
But the kale I cut back to almost nothing is fully leafed out.  I am going to make some kale chips - after carefully inspecting each leaf for caterpillars. 

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #698 on: September 14, 2020, 09:14:37 AM »
RAIN - glorious rain - giving the garden a reprieve from the worst of the summer heat.
I am relieved, I think my Cassava-Tapioca Plant is going to make it just fine through it's first year in my new garden area.

It is a tropical plant that will be perennial in our zone 10.
Love the red stems of the branches and the bi-colored leaves.



Planted in Mar/Apr at two inches tall - it is now close to 3ft x 3ft tall and wide.
The cream and ivory really makes it pop in the landscape.
My cosmos, the yellow flowers in the background, are still going strong - between five and seven feet tall.
They keep reseeding themselves like crazy:).

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Planting and Growing Your Own - 2020
« Reply #699 on: September 14, 2020, 06:13:51 PM »
Frost warning tonight - covered what I could.  Brought in my house plants.