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2016 Garden Plans

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  • 2016 Garden Plans

    Well I know we're all just getting started into winter in most places but my mind is already in gear thinking of what's going to go in the garden. Working on getting seed catalogs ordered and checking out various sites. So I thought I'd see what others are planning on for the coming year. If you would, tell us what growing zone your in and what crops and specific cultivar or varieties you are planning to grow.

    Depending on which map I look at I'm somewhere between 5b and 6b on the USDA hardiness maps. (http://planthardiness.ars.usda.gov/PHZMWeb/)

    My plan is to continue with the Mittleider method of gardening as it was extremely productive. I'm going to add some additional raised grow beds and might try to do some in ground raised dirt beds like I did my corn in last year. I know for sure I want to plant a lot more potatoes and corn though I'll plant it at about 2 week intervals. to space out the harvest.

    I also will need to figure out a way to get water to where the new beds will be for the automated watering system as they will be quite a way from the house.

    I'm working now to try to start planning out in the calendar on when I will need to start planting seedlings so they are ready to go in the ground as soon as the last frost has passed. I also need to see about building some things and putting together a seedling/ grow light area in my basement to be ready for when the time comes.

    As I start to settle on plants and varieties I will try to list them here.
    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

  • #2
    Country, have you considered using a small windmill and mechanical water pump or a solar pump for moving your water?

    I'm working on developing permaculture at my place and I'll put some other plants into protected sites. Not much needed, just cucumbers, tomatoes and do some local trading/swapping.

    Berries, apples, nuts and some wild food stuffs did really well last year. Made enough applebutter to last 4 years last year and don't know how many apples got put up.

    Dale

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    • #3
      Well I'm lucky for the most part in that it's downhill from the house to the area I want to plant. So I'm thinking of trying to stack 1, maybe 2 (help increase head pressure) IBC totes as water catchment and using gravity to feed. I did think about a small 12v electric pump i could run off a battery and small solar panel to help with pressure if needed. The bigger issue is just in how to route it. I don't want to dig up the yard and landscaping areas and I have to go around the pool area. My ground is mostly clay and limestone so trying to dig is a pain, 30 to 40 yards would be brutal without equipment. I'm hoping I can get away digging a couple shallow areas to go under the yard and then just use some long garden hoses and route them down thru the landscape areas. Once I get to where they beds will be I might bury PVC pipes shallow to feed the in-place watering system on the beds. I'll just figure a way to drain or blow most of the water out come fall.

      Just in the last 6-8 months I've been hearing and trying to learn more on permaculture. I just need to figure a way to configure it into the landscaping as I live in a development of sorts with the houses all on about 1 1/2 acre lots. Hard trying to decide how to start and I can't convince the wife to let me carve the yard up with swales. I personally couldn't care but the wife says it has to look nice so the neighbors don't complain. I remind her there's no HOA so what can they really do other than give me dirty looks. I'm thinking of starting off by doing some long, low mounds on the one side, sort of modified hugel beds. Then I'd plant those with some fruit trees and other support species and edibles to look like a "wild" island. Plus it would act as a screen and break from one of the 3 roads that border our lot.

      So much I want to do, so little money and so much less time.
      I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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      • #4
        In process of ordering seed now. My main concern is that like last year we could get rain at the wrong time and rot the seed after we plant. We planted peas twice and lost both times. Green beans didn't fair as well either. Will be watching weather very close this year. We want to start planting in mid March.

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        • #5
          Country, Do you have enough slope that you could run the pipe/hose elevated? A couple post would be easier to put in than digging any ditch (been there). If you can use PEX piping you might be able to leave it out year round.

          Hope this pic might help. Have you tried a image search on Bing for suburban permaculture?

          Click image for larger version

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          Dale

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Applejack View Post
            In process of ordering seed now. My main concern is that like last year we could get rain at the wrong time and rot the seed after we plant. We planted peas twice and lost both times. Green beans didn't fair as well either. Will be watching weather very close this year. We want to start planting in mid March.
            AJ, You might want to look into raise beds for gardening. Beautiful thing is that they are self draining so even if you get days and days of rain, unless the ground around them is literally flooded the water will drain down. I saw vids from this summer down in TX with all that flooding of people with raised beds (mainly Mittleider) that their crops survived since they are higher and allowed most of the water to drain away and not drown or rot the plants.
            I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by dalewick View Post
              Country, Do you have enough slope that you could run the pipe/hose elevated? A couple post would be easier to put in than digging any ditch (been there). If you can use PEX piping you might be able to leave it out year round.

              Hope this pic might help. Have you tried a image search on Bing for suburban permaculture?

              [ATTACH=CONFIG]9585[/ATTACH]

              Dale
              Thanks Dale. I'll check that out and see what ideas I might find

              on the raised line idea unfortunately no I don't have sufficient enough height to make it work. From where my tank outlet would be it's a fairly gentle slope for the first 2/3's of run with having maybe 5-7 foot drop in the last bit of run.
              I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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              • #8
                We are looking into the raised beds and have some material to get one started.

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                • #9
                  Last year I used space blankets to cover my seed starting rack. I looked into buying a grow tent, but they are $300. So I bought the plastic and tarp zippers and made it myself for $45.

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                  If it was man made it can be man re-made.

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                  • #10
                    I like this idea. We have a lot of those space blankets. So maybe I will get with hubby and see about making something like this. It might just give our seeds a better chance.

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                    • #11
                      Mangler, do you have any pics of those zippers? How do they attach to the blankets, are they self adhesive or do you have to glue or tape them on? Also, do you just use regular bulbs in your lights or do you get those special grow bulbs?
                      I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by CountryGuy View Post
                        Mangler, do you have any pics of those zippers?
                        I'll get some and post.

                        Originally posted by CountryGuy View Post
                        How do they attach to the blankets, are they self adhesive or do you have to glue or tape them on?
                        They are self-adhesive. Esstentially, the zipper is pre-sewn on to a piece of blue tarp fabric with a layer of double-stick tape on the backside. Just peel off the backing to the tape and stick them on the plastic. I let everything dry overnight just to make sure they stick. It worked very well. Then you just unzip and cut down the middle of the zipper to make them functional.

                        Originally posted by CountryGuy View Post
                        Also, do you just use regular bulbs in your lights or do you get those special grow bulbs?
                        I am using regular T-8 bulbs and fixtures. The bulbs are in the 6500K spectrum. Each buld draws 32 watts. There are two fixtures of two bulbs. With an on cycle of sixteen hours per day it costs about $6 per month in electricity.

                        The light fixtures are hung on ratcheting pulleys available at www.uhaul.com for $8 a pair. As the plants grow I just lift up the lights.
                        Last edited by Mangler; 01-13-2016, 05:45 PM.
                        If it was man made it can be man re-made.

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                        • #13
                          thanks, so then each shelf gets it's own light fixture?
                          I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you!

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                          • #14
                            Each shelf has a bank of two light fixtures of two bulbs each.

                            Here are a couple closeups of the zippers.
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                            I wrapped the shelving unit and taped the seams with tarp tape, but I think duct tape would be good enough.

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                            Last edited by Mangler; 01-13-2016, 05:46 PM.
                            If it was man made it can be man re-made.

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                            • #15
                              Last spring I constructed a mini green house using a 2ftx1ft sliding glass window and framed it up in a box about a foot deep and just over 2ft wide. I just sit it out on a table in the back yard allowing the sun to shine it it keeping it warm. If it gets to hot inside I can slide the window open and allow the plants to breath. I have received in the mail my seed books. Soon I shall be ordering and preparing to fill up the green house.Click image for larger version

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                              How Do You Like Me Now

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