Whatcha Growin'?

My wife and I are coordinators for a local community garden. We've been digging up dirt, pardon the pun, on what's hot and what's not. The garden won't open for another week or so but we've found great prices and already have had seedlings started at home for weeks now. The only things we cannot grow are sunflowers, corn and marijuana.

There are many tips and tricks out there with hacks on how to produce better produce. Our garden is completely organic and we donate surplus to the local Food Bank and Meals On Wheels programs each season.

I'm sorting through a list of 70+ Frugal DIY Garden Resources, an article I found online. That should keep me busy in my spare time. LOL.

Whether or not your name is Mary, Mary please comment with "How Does YOUR Garden Grow?"

https://happihomemade.com/frugal-diy-garden-articles/
 

Gardencook

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Our ground is just beginning to thaw here and we'll probably have snow several more times before our "spring" arrives in June. We have a very late, very short growing season, heavy clay, heavy alkalinity, etc. However, one thing that grows exceptionally well in our extreme climate is greens.

I've grown just about every type imaginable through the years. We've had elderly parents reaching the end of life the past few years, so haven't had much of a garden going during that time. However, I was just mentioning to DH the other day that we needed to get out and plant some early greens.

It is much too early for the wide variety of Asian greens we love so much. (The rapid temperature extremes we have here cause them to bolt if planted too early.) However, this time of year we should be able to get by with at least planting lettuce, spinach and Swiss Chard. Now would be a good time to plant parsley, as well.

We won't see anything of them for weeks, but I didn't get any spinach planted last autumn for an early spring crop and the way grocery shelves are looking right now, we may be glad to have them.
 
I love greens... all kinds! I especially love spinach! I'm not sure what my wife has or hasn't bought or planted but I do know I'll be doing a lot of real work, even if I insist that I will not help. I'm a pushover. You are so right about the shelves on produce right now. I just don't think panic buy has really even set in yet. Once the shelves restock it will be the same behaviors of stocking up on some things, whether needed or not. Things will return to normal... we just don't know when.
 

Gardencook

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Well, sorted through some of our mess of seeds -- and they are a MESS!

Did find flat-leaf parsley, but no curled and a little chicory and radicchio. Still debating on whether to chance direct seeding some perilla/shiso outdoors or if it is too early. It never amounts to much when I start it indoors and I can't ever buy plants locally.

Pulled out the veggies that are about right for our climate right now. Still have to trudge outdoors and figure out how much digging will be required to plant anything. We've got a wide variety to choose from.

Pulled million varieties of lettuce including mixes, red and green romaines, buttercrunch, Bibb, Bon Vivant,Taiwan etc., etc. For some weird reason, I didn't find any Black-seeded Simpson. I know we've got a ton of packets. Who doesn't?

We've got at least five to 10 varieties each of spinach, beets, radishes, carrots which don't do well in our heavy clay. We've got seven top turnip greens and some small white turnips that never amount to much.

Also green, red and mixed color Swiss Chard, several varieties of mustard greens, collards and a bunch of things I'm sure I've forgotten to mention.

Did pull a bunch of packets of allysum seeds to plant among the veggies to draw beneficial insects.

Weather is still too unpredictable to chance planting Asian Greens.

And then we got the announcement that tonight will be a record low, so we won't be out in the garden this afternoon ... :rolleyes: Springtime in the Rockies.
 
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mtka

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I planted some lettuce in a big pot and put it in the greenhouse for now. We are expecting a few nights of freeze/frost this week still. We have some asparagus already, so have had few spears of that. The strawberries in the greenhouse are flowering now and have tons of apple blossoms, just in time for the freeze.
 
Our community garden should be up and going and growing in the very near future. While our garden is still going to operate with the pandemic, another city sponsored garden can not access their garden. My wife has been starting indoor vegetable starters that are peeking out of the dirt so I believe the timing will work great. I saw a few snowflakes earlier... bipolar weather. I guess that is northeast (Cleveland area) Ohio for you.

I'm hoping to get your progress added to this thread as the season rolls on to see how your plants and produce are coming along.

Think Spring, everyone!

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Gardencook

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I saw a few snowflakes earlier... bipolar weather. I guess that is northeast (Cleveland area) Ohio for you.

Your starts look nice! I used to cover our entire dining room table with a makeshift "hot house" using grow lights, cardboard boxes, tin foil and dollar store table cloths. I grew beautiful starts each year. Then all of our parents got older and we had to make too many out-of-town emergency runs.

Now if I can't direct seed or buy starts, I don't bother.

Maybe someday again. :rolleyes:

As far as snow ...

We had snow on our wedding day -- May 15. Then there was the year we got "late" snow on the Fourth of July -- not to mention the year we got "early" snow in August. That's why I've given up on long season vegetables. :confused:

Our "spring" weather is absolutely crazy around here. We can be in the 90s one week, down below freezing a couple days later and then back into the 80s a couple days later. THAT is when everything starts to bolt. UGH!
 
Thank you, Gardencook. I haven't put away my snow shovel for the season but we just mulched and set out the annoying lawn ornaments in front of our condo where we plant flowers. The vegetables are grown on our patio. At least the condo association doesn't have a say on what we have in our own space. Well, except that we are not allowed to have bird feeders or gas grills. Those are things I don't like about condo living but there are a lot of pluses. My wife wants to leave the Midwest and head to America's Southwest. I'm not on board. I'll help her pack. May she can find an affordable tepee in the desert? (grin)
 

Gardencook

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The Southwest isn't my cup of tea either @MEN ON A BUDGET. Even the climate here is much too dry for me, living in the Southwest would kill me.

I wouldn't mind moving back to the Southwest Washington State I left behind 40 years ago. The climate is still ideal for me when I travel back and gardening there is a whole lot better, but I don't think I could cope with all the people/crime/chaos they've got there these days. I enjoy the laid-back pace we've got here too much.

Each year I live here I can relate more to the Neil Diamond song, "I Am ... I Said."
 
I hope that our two mason bee hives' activity the past few days is an indication that Spring is upon us. As we plant more we should be able to keep them busy pollinating . I will say that I am not thrilled with having bees of any kind just hanging around. "Mason bees are solitary bees. The males do not have a stinger, and the females will only sting if trapped or squeezed. This makes them an ideal neighbor for the home garden, since they pose little to no threat of stinging." I'm still not comforted by that. My anxiety issues do not work well with bees... of any kind.
 

Gardencook

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No wonder I haven't been able to get motivated again this year.

Snow last week followed by temps way over 90 degrees by the end of last week and this week. I actually picked up a few -- but not many plants -- there really are hardly any plants to buy this year.

I'm withering in the heat, since my body really doesn't adapt well to such rapid temperature changes.

Tonight's news? Sunday, Monday and Tuesday will be below freezing again. Plants will need to be covered.
 

mtka

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I'm really slow this year with the garden. I planted a lot of old seeds on June 11, hoping for something to grow. We are getting corn, cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, beans, and lettuce. I planted 6 heads of iceberg lettuce, giving some room in between. The cat decided to poop in the garden and moved all the lettuce seeds to one pile. I don't know how he even managed to collect all 6 seeds and put them right next to each other.

Today I worked at another 3x8 raised garden. It was taken over by weeds and I was going to take it down and move the dirt elsewhere. Decided to just get the weeds out and plant cantaloupe and pumpkins there. Hoping they still have time to grow. We did get 25 sweet potato plants from the Mennonite bulk store. Most of those are doing well.

We had a very late freeze and frosts, lost all but 1 single apple in the orchard. The cows were looking forward to the apples too. They like to dig around under the trees hoping for dropped apples. They were so full of blossoms, but nothing we could do to save them, unlike the commercial orchards around.
 

Jorainna

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Never grew much of anything this year ... not even my container flower garden which I always loved doing and enjoy the colors throughout the summer. Everything just went way off kilter.

However, a few faithful flowers are blooming with out much care ...

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mtka

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I love those little Dianthus (sp?) @Jorainna. We are getting lots of tomatoes, but none ripe yet. The cucumbers are taking over much of the garden, gave up on the lettuce, the beans are still coming slowly. We are dry as a bone and it's hard to keep watering everything. We harvested our potato crop, 6 little potatoes. We have a new indoor/outdoor farmer's market in town, it's really nice. Been getting corn and beans but took last week off. Stopping off tomorrow to see what they have now. I do have some fresh basil, if I decide to actually cook a big dinner some time. The other herbs also gave up on me.
 

Jorainna

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I now what you mean ... the poor grass is dried to a crisp. There is a little produce stand that is open daily near a Shell gas station here. I think their produce is coming in from Georgia, though. I have not been downtown on Saturday's to the big Farmer's Market and probably won't go.
 

flowerkitty

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We have had rain almost all summer and everything is almost as green here as spring....which is really unusual.
Usually by now, most lawns and gardens are suffering from heat & drought. We have had the heat & humidity, but rain also. Looking forward to a cooler week ahead with lower humidity.
I have nice hot peppers that we are using for pepper poppers. (I had awesome germination with the hot peppers).The tomatoes are slow to turn red...looking for a nice amount to make a batch of pizza sauce.
I have several pots of cat grass that are looking good.
The last time I was at Petsmart, I noticed they are selling smallish pots for $7.99 Each.
My husband brought me an envelope of seed home when he helped his friend harvest his wheat. I covered the tops of the soil in my pots with the wheat seed then sprinkled enough soil on top just to cover...and watered in. It came up in less than a week.
I do think it helps that I check my almanac & plant when times are favorable.;)
 

busyasabeecrg

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@flowerkitty ...so refreshing to hear you have rain and greenery! We have been sweltering here as much as the garden which is non-existent by now with record heat. It has been 95-107 F since July. At least it hasn't been 120 F like the desert was several days this week. It usually lasts until mid September. After that I'm hoping to get the garden planted.:)
 

busyasabeecrg

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Oh, no! In Borrego Springs where some of my friends live, it was 130 F today...just saw it on TV. You won't hear me complaining about our 105 F plus weather here. Due to excessive heat and high energy demand, a Stage Four Emergency was ordered to increase rotating outages.
 
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