new garden, new gardener

cthrnpage(9)February 6, 2013

Hello everyone! I'm really glad to have found this forum. I have dabbled in gardening from time to time over the years and managed to grow cherry tomatoes, a ragged pepper plant and not much else. It hasn't stopped me from trying though. This year I finally got serious. I want to grow Anaheim peppers, jalapenos, serranos and vegetables. I haven't decided on which vegetables yet.

I have three pots I painted white that are about four feet across and open bottomed that will sit on the ground. I was planning on putting them on the east side of the house and using porch poles as vining support for things like peas and beans. I could put them on the west side but am t hink IMO ng morning to noon sun is better than noon to sunset sun. I hope so because I prefer sitting on that side of the house. :)

I have lots of neighbors producing lots of manure they would love to be rid of and a corral out back full of it that's been sitting for at least a year with no fresh added. I am considering using compost tea as fertilizer.

Most of my knowledge is from books and magazines which are no substitute for experience. I would enjoy any advice and discussion and want to post as I go on this forum. I don't know any gardeners here and could definately use advice.

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cthrnpage(9)

Can I use the aged manure straight to fill my pots? Will I still need to add fertilizer?

I will also be adding nightcrawlers from the local hardware store sold as tackle.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 10:20AM
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greendesert

I wouldn't use straight manure. I'd add a few things to it. sand, perlite or vermiculite maybe some peatmoss (although the manure has quite a bit of organic matter that might act like the moss. I've used straight manure before for things like pumpkins...and other nitrogen hungry types of plants.
I'd say that you probably don't want to add fertilizer if you already have incorporated manure into the soil.
nightcrawlers might be ok, but won't survive in the summer in pots. they simply get way too hot.
The smaller red wigglers are the preferred ones for gardening. you can buy them from various garden sources.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 12:50PM
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Nick.2013(9a-9b)

Hello new gardener. I would not use straight manure from your neighbors , I'm assuming that it's horse manure. I'm not starting a vegetable gardening yet. But I know for sure that straight manure will sprout MANY bermuda grass. You will not like it. It'll be lots of work. Don't do it. Nick

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 12:30AM
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haname(z9 AZ NE Phoenix)

I want to grow Anaheim peppers, jalapenos, serranos and vegetables. I haven't decided on which vegetables yet.

You can grow all sorts of things here quite well, actually. Follow the recommended times for planting on the planting calendar linked below. Peppers go in now.

I have three pots I painted white that are about four feet across and open bottomed that will sit on the ground. I was planning on putting them on the east side of the house and using porch poles as vining support for things like peas and beans. I could put them on the west side but am t hink IMO ng morning to noon sun is better than noon to sunset sun. I hope so because I prefer sitting on that side of the house. :)

The east side is definitely better for the plants that will grow through the summer.

I have lots of neighbors producing lots of manure they would love to be rid of and a corral out back full of it that's been sitting for at least a year with no fresh added. I am considering using compost tea as fertilizer.

Using the aged manure to make compost tea is a great idea.

Most of my knowledge is from books and magazines which are no substitute for experience. I would enjoy any advice and discussion and want to post as I go on this forum. I don't know any gardeners here and could definately use advice.

If you are interested in taking some classes to help you get a kick-start, consider looking for help through the Desert Botanical Garden (dbg.org) and the Valley Permaculture alliance (phoenixpermaculture.org).

Here is a link that might be useful: Urban Farm Planting Calendar

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 2:08PM
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hellbound

if you're on the west side the community garden i'm a member of is having a get together on saturday to spread mulch and harvest the food bank plot you'll be able to find lots of practical advise there...it behind the library on avondale blvd south of the i-10

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 4:44PM
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cthrnpage(9)

I am very glad to get all the responses! Thank you everyone!

The manure I am using is aged a year and it is from cows fed on hay. There is not a lot of grass out here, period, so I am hoping Nick is wrong about the bermuda grass! :D

Here is Gila Bend, about 40 miles SW of Phoenix, I am not in Phoenix and I LOVE it out here. It is the hottest place in the country and, I believe, warmer than Phoenix so I am in for a challenge.

I am starting earlier and planning on mulching with hay (Also free as I am lucky to pick up the scattered stuff that would otherwise be left on the ground). I did add nightcrawlers and will keep in mind the "red wigglies" next time I go shopping in Phoenix.

My pots are painted gloss white (to reflect sun) and about 4 feet across and about 2 feet tall. The manure does seem to have a lot of fibrous material but what do I know. :) By open pots I meant they are open to the ground on the bottom. It's old sewage pipe I cut to height and painted. Turns out it has a nice kinda Roman look, I will try to upload some pictures.

I think I have a gardner's dream come true out here.

On compost tea, I will be trying gallon milk jugs with a third manure and water. (I have access to horse manure too and its fresh). How long do I let it sit and how much do I use?

Thanks again for all the advice, I am on a budget and am definately keeping it all in mind and will be looking for everything mentioned. I will adjust as I go. :)

    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 9:45AM
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cthrnpage(9)

P.S. That planting calendar is great!

    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 9:52AM
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haname(z9 AZ NE Phoenix)

There are lots of demonstrations on YouTube making manure tea or compost tea or activated compost tea. Link below can get you started. :) The guy in the video uses cheesecloth as a tea bag. I've used those little paint strainer bags you can find at the hardware store with the paint sprayer supplies.

Here is a link that might be useful: Making Manure Tea Video

    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 3:55PM
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cthrnpage(9)

Thank you haname! That's super easy! :D

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 10:51AM
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cthrnpage(9)

before paint

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 12:46PM
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cthrnpage(9)

after paint

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 12:47PM
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cthrnpage(9)

manure I'm using

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 12:49PM
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