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  1. #61
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    With one of my close friends, we planted a nice-sized (16' X 20') vegetable garden this Spring. This is her second time with a garden, and my first, and as silly as it sounds, I'm experiencing a lot of similar feelings of excitement and anticipation as I did when I was pregnant .

    Our garden has:

    Tomatoes (Heirloom, Roma, Cherry, and Beefsteaks)
    Okra
    Cucumbers
    Bell Peppers
    Jalapenos
    Squash (crookneck and straightneck)
    Zucchini
    Green Beans
    White and Yellow Onions

    After tilling, prepping the soil, and planting (which was done the weekend after Tax Day ), we used Miracle Gro for the first few weeks. Fortunately, we've had a decent amount of rainfall without getting flooded, and in the past week, everything seems to have exploded . All of the plants are flowering, and we have several tomatoes growing, itty-bitty squash and peppers starting the grow, lots of little okra buds, and all kinds of baby cukes showing up.

    Do green beans need a wire frame or a pole to grow? I'm assuming they're vines, and they're growing almost as fast as weeds (which ), so do we need to get something in the ground for them to flourish?

    Also, we had our first official "harvest" if you want to call it that - one cuke, that was almost 5 inches in length. Shawn and I were surprised, considering the rest of them are so small.

    I also want to plant herbs (primarily basil, dill, rosemary, thyme, and cilantro), but I have no idea if it's too late to get them started. If I do go ahead with them, do they grow better in the ground, or should I get a large pot for each of them? One of my concerns is that they seem pretty delicate compared to the veggies. The summer sun down here can be absolutely brutal, and my thought was that if they're in pots (or a long rectangular bed that can be moved), I can keep them on my deck and move them out of the direct sunlight if it appears like they're getting fried.

    Other herbs I'd like to plant are lavender and lemon verbena, but again, I have no idea if they're better off planted directly in the ground or in large pots.

    My friend was also thinking about trying to grow another "herb" than shan't be mentioned here , but I don't think that would be the smartest of ideas . I told her that if she wanted to do that, she can do it at her house rather than my yard/deck.

    *****

    As far as non-veggie gardening, the rose bushes that were planted last August (I'm not sure what kind they are - they're sort of like tea roses but aren't very fragrant, though they're "strong" and hold up in all kinds of weather), are absolutely thriving and are frickin' HUGE now. We have 3 on either side of the entrance to our driveway, and 4 in the backyard, and they've grown faster and larger than any of the other decorative plants (liriope, azaleas, and some other type of bush that looks similar to boxwoods but are much smaller). I would love to plant a Victorian/English flower garden, but I have no idea how to go about it, not to mention the names of nearly all of the beautiful flowers I see in magazines ).

    About impatiens (mentioned upthread)....at my parents old house, we had two long beds of them framing the patio in the back of the house. Not only were they beautiful when they blossomed, they were extremely low-maintenance and grew like crazy.

  2. #62

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    Cyn, I found that verbena & lavender look kind of messy in the garden. Even when they flower they look like weeds to me. Esp verbena. And yes, you need something for the beans to climb. You should be able to find exactly what you need to do on the internet.

    My garden is mostly flowers but I do have some herbs: rosemary, thyme, oregano, basil, & parsley. I get more than I can use so I end up throwing away a lot of excess.

  3. #63

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    I dry my herbs for the winter. I planted Basil, Oregano, Chives, Cilantro and Parsley...but for the life of me I can remember if Parsley is perrenial or not? I know that Cilantro is not, but Basil, Oregano and Chives are. I also picked up a hanging tomato plant and it is just flowering like crazy so I am hoping to get a lot from it.

    My Saskatoon trees/ shrubs are already growing like crazy but my raspberries don't seem to be looking to great. Anyone know what I can do to really perk them up? Miracle Grow? I am watering them like crazy but some of the leaves aren't looking too good.

    I just laid down some landscaping fabric and covered it with red mulch and it looks absolutely fabulous on my one garden. That side is south facing and I am finding it is drying up so darn fast already and it is only May!!

    I still have to dig up a bunch of earth along my driveway as it has just been overcome with clover and crab grass and lay the farbic down there too. I have this big bush like thing at the top of my driveway that just looks unslightly so I am gonna dig that up and give it to my friend because she wants some filler for her garden. I like nice clean lines and simplistic gardens that are not overrun (in my eyes) with plants and that thing just looks weird against the rest of the garden.

    My rose bush looks absolutely fabulous!! I love it and I am leaving that thing a lone. I am going to have to cut it really down in the fall because it is too full but I have to wait until it blooms before I cut it back...but wow is it ever full of buds. Very cool.
    Last edited by Twilight1; 05-28-2010 at 03:26 PM.
    ~I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.~ (Charles R. Swindoll)

  4. #64

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    Quote Originally Posted by Twilight1 View Post
    Anyone know what I can do to really perk them up? Miracle Grow? I am watering them like crazy but some of the leaves aren't looking too good.

    How old are your canes? Raspberry canes work best if you encourage the new growth and work in the old. You can try miracle gro, it'll help. What we have done is basically cut the raspberry patch in half using lattice. The side that bloomed and produced last year we work in this year. We use the lattice as a marker so to speak you could use anything.

    If you patch isn't as big as ours, then what we do would seem like a lot of bother. Fertilize and trim out the old dead canes.
    Gone crazy. Be back soon.

  5. #65

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    I just bought them (2 plants) 2 weeks ago? The one seems to be okay but the other's leaves are just crumbling. Not all of them, most of the plant is fine. Should I cut them back? I have never planted them before so I am not sure what to do with new young plants.
    ~I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.~ (Charles R. Swindoll)

  6. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Twilight1 View Post
    I dry my herbs for the winter. I planted Basil, Oregano, Chives, Cilantro and Parsley...but for the life of me I can remember if Parsley is perrenial or not? I know that Cilantro is not, but Basil, Oregano and Chives are. I also picked up a hanging tomato plant and it is just flowering like crazy so I am hoping to get a lot from it.
    Some plants that are perennial won't make it through the winter in a northern zone. Bay laurel is one example - so we simply snip off the entire plant in fall and hang it to dry for use in the winter, and plant a new one every spring. (Fresh bay leaves are so fragrant compared to the tasteless dried ones you buy in jars!) This year our mint didn't come back either, as it has for years, so we just planted more.

    I've put dill and cilantro in the ground this year instead of pots, and so far both are doing much better. We have basil and thyme in pots and the ground to hedge our bets as we use a lot of both.

    I've done a potato bucket for the first time, and hubby put one in the ground to see which does better, and so far both are doing very well! Lots of shoots and leaves already. I wish we had the space to do a giant potato mound.

  7. #67

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    I have my herbs in a planter, but I have a big shed in the back...are they okay to sit in there or will that kill them too (for the winter)? lol

    The raspberry plant is doing better!! I just clipped the dead leaves and it has started to flower. Strawberries are already ripening and the saskatoons and blueberries are doing fabulous.
    ~I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.~ (Charles R. Swindoll)

  8. #68
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    Planted the garden this weekend with mostly peppers and tomatos. Last year was such a bust that I decided not to plant as much. I do have my herbs and I am trying some seed in containers for the first time. Hopefully it will not be as cold and rainy this year!
    Without fear you cannot find courage

  9. #69
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    Whew. Haven't updated in so long...it's been a big crash from graduation to moving back home and job hunting and I haven't adjusted as well as I thought I would have. I mostly spent the last two weeks trying to get emotionally oriented (it's been very up and down), and the garden's suffered a lot as a result... but we are on the uprise again! here we go:

    Out of all the spinach that I sowed this year, we got one pitiful looking little clump. I'm not sure what I'll be able to do with it, since it's only got about 4-5 leaves!

    I planted Chinese broccoli and it's starting to flower! I love the yellow flowers! Unfortunately I think Chinese broccoli is the kind of vegetable where you cut it once and ...yeah, that's it for the season, so I'm all reluctant to eat it now Chard is doing well (I already had some with soup :cheers - my seeds were three years old this spring so I only got about six or seven plants out of it, but that's enough for me.

    I took this picture of my eggplants only a few days ago - and I went out today and one of them was almost eaten to the ground I'm not sure what's going on there, but it's freaking me out especially because the tomatoes aren't doing so well this year either - I had a lot of troubles with the transplants between traveling home for interviews/nobody to set up the light, the light toppling over and frying plants, wind decapitating another plant, etc. and on top of all that I was in a rush to transplant them out and they burnt some more... That's all the yellow foliage down below, but fortunately the tops seem to be greening out and doing well. I'm still expecting to get a semi-decent yield of tomatoes this summer despite the huge windfall of misfortunes.

    Garlic chives are thriving! We already had some diced and stir-fried with eggs I think next time we might try them in dumplings. If they keep up at this rate I'm thinking we won't have space for anything else next year Continuing with the herbs, basil is thriving as well, and I can't wait for pesto season.

    On the non-edibles side, my lemon trees (four of them now, each two years old) are doing well - one of them had scale earlier this year (I HATE those things) and I did my best to clean it up over spring break, so I was happy to see that it had recovered well. And my little rose plant from seed (someone here sent me a PM about loving roses a few years ago - Wyliefan? ) that I thought was completely dead has come back to life and is sending out lovely green foliage again!

    My mother LOVES roses so I thought I'd share some of hers. I don't do big roses, too much work and not enough eating though every time they bloom, I can't help snapping a gazillion pictures.

    I really wish I'd taken better pictures and kept better documentation of my garden this year. I love looking back at last year's photos and remembering how much fun it was to watch them develop week by week. Plants never cease to amaze me
    Last edited by mkats; 06-01-2010 at 01:54 AM.

  10. #70

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    Do chipmunks like herbs and veggies? I have lots in pots on the back porch. Despite having two dogs, a chipmunk scampers up and down the steps...

  11. #71
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    We have a chipmunk living in the garden. He hasn't caused any trouble, but then again he's probably not fond of tomato and eggplant leaves, since nothing's fruited yet

    IIRC he was here last year too and it was fine.

  12. #72

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    Anyone know anything about growing primrose from seed...I got some and planted them in a pot. Now I am wondering if I did the right thing lol!
    ~I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.~ (Charles R. Swindoll)

  13. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkats View Post
    I really wish I'd taken better pictures and kept better documentation of my garden this year. I love looking back at last year's photos and remembering how much fun it was to watch them develop week by week. Plants never cease to amaze me
    Oh, for sure! I thought one of my bush beans was dying after being transplanted, but it simply shed two of its biggest leaves and is currently growing new ones instead. And the dormant tomato plant that didn't grow at all for 4 months just shot up a few inches after being transplanted into a bigger pot. Plants are tenacious things!

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkats View Post
    Whew. Haven't updated in so long...it's been a big crash from graduation to moving back home and job hunting and I haven't adjusted as well as I thought I would have. I mostly spent the last two weeks trying to get emotionally oriented (it's been very up and down), and the garden's suffered a lot as a result... but we are on the uprise again! here we go:
    mkats, I always enjoy your stories and photos - I'm sure that when you get your life in order, your garden will thrive once again. Plants feel it

    We had heavy rain overnight, and this morning I saw the first slugs of the season. There were several 3-inch orangish ones in my potato bucket, and one near the fence behind the main veggie garden, so I got out the slug bait and hopefully that's the last of them. Yes yes I know there are more organic methods, but they've never worked for us (and seriously, who wants to deal with a pan of beer drunken dead slugs?) and this stuff claims it harms nothing but the slugs. In past years we have had some as large as hot dogs (no exaggeration), all spotted and striped and disgusting. The joys of living near the water in a port city!

    On the upside, my potato bucket is going nuts and is almost ready for another layer of dirt, and I have high hopes for my horseradish, which has several glorious plumes for leaves that I hope mean a nice big fat veggie beneath the soil.

    All my herbs are in full bloom now, so we are enjoying fresh cuttings in every meal. It makes me so happy not to have to buy stuff shipped in from the Dominican, and not to have to waste so much as things like dill seem always to be sold in ridiculous quantities. My dream is to have a little greenhouse where we can grow fresh herbs year round, sigh.

  15. #75

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    My bil always had slugs in his garden and he lived in Fort Mac.

    Dill is one of my fav garden plants. It does well planted in the soil and it will re-seed itself for many years.

    I bought this plant yesterday, candy corn

    http://www.plantcare.com/encyclopedi...plant-655.aspx

    I thought it looked interesting.
    Gone crazy. Be back soon.

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    I have a basil plant in a pot that was growing nice and bushy until we had a week of afternoon thunderstorms. It's now greenish-yellow and starting to flower, should I just start over? In the past I would just put my potted herbs in my screened in patio but this week I never had a chance it was just too hectic. Another thing I notice with basil is that it's easily bruised, even by rain.

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    I would just pinch off the flowers and eat it as you want. How big is your pot? My basil plants have gotten to 2+ feet in the ground but no more than 6+ inches in a pot.

    In more edible news, I ate a huge bunch of Chinese broccoli from the garden today :cheers: I think I might use that space to plant cucumbers.

  18. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Twilight1 View Post
    ...My Saskatoon trees/ shrubs are already growing like crazy but my raspberries don't seem to be looking to great. Anyone know what I can do to really perk them up? Miracle Grow? I am watering them like crazy but some of the leaves aren't looking too good.
    Raspberries usually like acidic soil. Miracid or Hollytone will help.

    Quote Originally Posted by Twilight1 View Post
    ...I just laid down some landscaping fabric and covered it with red mulch and it looks absolutely fabulous on my one garden. That side is south facing and I am finding it is drying up so darn fast already and it is only May!!
    Be careful with red mulches. Most of them have dye in them to get the nice red color. Not good for the environment.

  19. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by zhenya271 View Post
    I have a basil plant in a pot that was growing nice and bushy until we had a week of afternoon thunderstorms. It's now greenish-yellow and starting to flower, should I just start over? In the past I would just put my potted herbs in my screened in patio but this week I never had a chance it was just too hectic. Another thing I notice with basil is that it's easily bruised, even by rain.
    Pinch the basil back even if you don't want to use it and it should come back nice.

    Don't let basil flower if you still want to harvest and use it for cooking. Flowering produces seeds. If you want seeds for next year ok but flowering also makes the leaves taste bitter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Twilight1 View Post
    The raspberry plant is doing better!! I just clipped the dead leaves and it has started to flower. Strawberries are already ripening and the saskatoons and blueberries are doing fabulous.
    You inspired me - I planted a blueberry bush on the weekend.

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