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Thread: Grinder's no-till vegetable garden

  1. Back To Top    #61

    Re: Grinder's no-till vegetable garden

    06/09

    Culled 30 dead/dying/damaged pepper plants, and planted Contender Bush Bean seeds in their place (2 seeds in each location, to be thinned to strongest seedling).
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    While there may have been additional issues, it seems clear that the frost had done far more damage to the pepper seedlings than was initially apparent; and there were a number that, while still in pots, had been particularly prone to being blown over in breezy conditions (perhaps due to weak root systems that had become compromised in some way), several of which had failed to achieve full health and vigor since being transplanted into garden, which pulled up easily today with few roots and same/similar discolored and bare (no roots) stem area just below soil level that I’d noted while dealing with those blown over seedlings.

    Weeding and replenishing wood chips. With the herb plants having been relocated, and with thorough weeding of inner area of vegetable garden perimeter, began replenishing perimeter wood chips to help discourage weed invasion and make future weeding easier.
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    06/10

    Continued replenishing perimeter wood chips.

    Transplanted both rosemary plants into large enough pots to sustain them for at least the next couple years.

    Began process of creating triangular carrot bed to the left of the garden gate.

    06/12

    Began the process of creating long, narrow bed to the left of the garden gate. Process ultimately consisted of the following: push larger surface chips to fence side, remove remaining chips down to soil level; sift all removed chips (0.25” mesh); remove upper 2-3” of topsoil; sift all removed topsoil (0.25” mesh); loosen soil in-place down to ~4” with shovel and then break up clumps and mix in some composted cow manure and some of the sifted wood chips; combine and thoroughly mix three parts sifted soil, two parts sifted wood chips, one part sifted composted cow manure and fill in prepared area to just above wood chip level; water thoroughly to settle soil; plant seeds the following day. Triangular bed had been prepared in the same way, but with about twice as much composted manure as the long, narrow bed.

    06/13

    Planted Scarlet Nantes Carrot seeds in triangular bed.

    06/17

    Planted seeds in long, narrow bed to the left of the garden gate: Scarlet Nantes Carrot; Nantes Coreless Carrot; Early Scarlet Globe Radish; Purple Top White Globe Turnip.
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    06/20

    Bean seeds have sprouted over the last few days and are looking so-so.

    By now the vast majority of squash, pumpkin, melon and cucumber seeds planted on the 4th have either failed to germinate or were killed by striped cucumber, squash beetles, or some unknown pest(s) soon after germination. I highly doubt there will be any squash, pumpkins, melons or cucumbers at all this year.

    Finished trimming lower growth on all tomato plants. Should have given them more of a trim while transplanting them into the garden, as it’s recommended to prevent foliage from touching the ground, and I wouldn’t have had to remove nearly so much low growth, and the plants could have focused their efforts on upper growth. It’s tough though, given both the average depth of wood chip mulch, and the need for sufficient depth of wood chips to anchor the tomato cages.
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    06/22

    It appears that the majority of carrot seeds in triangular bed have sprouted by now. Similarly, it appears that the majority of radish seeds in the long and narrow bed have sprouted, with a few carrots beginning to emerge.

    06/23

    Bean seedlings aren’t looking very good. No idea what the issue might be. Appears to be some sort of leaf blight affecting first set of mature leaves. Newer growth looks okay so far, but will presumably be slow due to whatever the issue is/was with the first set of mature leaves. Weather has been unusually hot and dry for several weeks now, perhaps that has something to do with it. Fortunately, it appears that some relief may be on the way.

    06/25

    Replanted squash, pumpkin, melon and cucumber seeds (in spots where transplanted squash, pumpkin, melon and cucumber seedlings had been killed by insects and frost, and where subsequently planted seeds have either failed to germinate or whose seedlings have been killed by insects. As of today, with only 14 of those 86 planted spots having a surviving seedling, and with two of those 86 spots no longer available due to replenishment of perimeter wood chips, all 70 remaining empty spots were planted with leftover seeds):
    14 Fordhook Zucchini
    10 Waltham Butternut Squash
    9 Tommy Apple Melon Cantaloupe
    9 Strawberry Watermelon
    9 Buttercup Squash
    9 New England Sugar Pie Pumpkin
    5 Connecticut Field Pumpkin
    5 Marketmore 76 Cucumber

    Transplanted four Greek Oregano plants into new flower and herb garden areas.

    Tomato plants are doing very well, with only one (a Jet Star) showing serious signs of some sort of leaf blight. Bunches of tomatoes on each Jet Star plant are well on the way, with the Opalkas not far behind, and a few tiny cherry tomatoes.

    All 52 remaining pepper plants are doing well (though some are now twice the size of others), and there are already a few peppers here and there.
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    06/26

    Noticed this morning that some unknown creature has eaten nearly all of the radish sprouts. Not sure if turnip sprouts are up and/or affected yet. Carrots appear to be doing fine so far.

    Both kinds of basil have not done well at all. I think it’s mostly because I planted way too many seeds, way too close together, and then failed to realize (until it was too late) that they needed to be thinned.

    Received a bit of badly needed rain the last couple days, with temperatures down from crazy 90s to normal 80s.

  2. Back To Top    #62
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    Re: Grinder's no-till vegetable garden

    Nice to see some more updates, sucks that you lost a bunch of plants, but it looks like you still have plenty growing!

    Quote Originally Posted by Grinder View Post
    Noticed this morning that some unknown creature has eaten nearly all of the radish sprouts. Not sure if turnip sprouts are up and/or affected yet.
    How are you dealing with bugs/pests?

    It can be really frustrating seeing your hard work eaten by pests.... as an example my grape vine was doing really well, in fact I was thinking I might be able to harvest a bunch of grapes from it this year (planted last year, this year the cane is strong enough to grow grapes) but Japanese Beetles have started attacking it and are making short work of it. I sprayed the ground with a water and dish detergent solution to kill off the grubs before they emerge, but realistically, I am not sure I would not have to spray a huge swath of my yard to have any real impact. I'm trying to avoid using too many pesticides, but may have to if I want to actually get anything from the plants.
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  3. Back To Top    #63

    Re: Grinder's no-till vegetable garden

    I agree. It is incredibly frustrating to see all that effort, hope and potential so quickly and thoroughly destroyed by conditions and/or pests. However, I won't use any sort of chemical or pesticide, or even any non-toxic/organic substance that might harm beneficial insects or soil organisms. While I truly do feel like unleashing thermonuclear war on the little bastards, I'll just have to be patient and take the bad with the good, and trust that a balanced garden ecosystem will evolve in the long run.

  4. Back To Top    #64

    Re: Grinder's no-till vegetable garden

    07/09

    The vast majority of tomato plants have been severely damaged by some sort of leaf blight. At the rate they’ve been losing leaves, from the ground up, over the last several days, I’ll be surprised if all but a few of the healthiest plants aren’t dead within the next week or two. The cherry tomato plants appear least affected, along with a few of the Jet Star plants. Fingers crossed that at least these plants will continue to thrive.

    Pepper plants are doing well, with a number of sizeable peppers already well on the way.

    Bush bean plants (amongst the pepper plants), having had some sort of a rough start, now appear to be doing well.

    The two carrot, radish and turnip beds are doing so-so. While the triangular bed with just carrots has only a few remaining seedlings left at this point, the long bed seems to be doing a lot better – mostly due, I presume, to differences in how the seeds were sown. It appears that broadcasting seeds and then a layer of soil worked far better than in holes and shallow rows. Also, the soil of the triangular bed was prepared with around twice the composted manure of the long bed – which might have been too much.

    Sunflower seeds sown on the 3rd are sprouting.

    Remains to be seen if any of the very few surviving squash/pumpkin/melon/cucumber plants will ever reach maturity, let alone produce anything. Odds are presumably slim to none.

    Weather has continued to be far dryer and warmer than normal, which hasn’t helped matters.

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