Ready to give up -Just a rant - sorry

sillybugs(z10 FL)August 17, 2004

Maybe someone can smack some sense into me.. but please feel free to also ignor me..i just need to get this out before i burst.

Im just on over load.. and ready to toss out every seed, pot, tool, bag of dirt and cutting i own.

I just cant garden in florida, everything i do turns out to be a mess and waist of time...

Before i moved here, it all seemed so easy to me, and every year i grew everything from corn to pumpkins and watermelons.. you name it. AND it was moslty from seeds.

What happens here?.. everything dies!

I get 2 inch scrawny seedlings that just seem to evaporate

over night. i have the right temps, and water.. probably the wrong dirt.. but i use what i can afford

(the 99c HD stuff)

I wanted so badly to have a plant sale so i could buy a permit to sell veggies at the farmers market, so i could then take that money and turn it around some how by getting more garden supplies, like grow lights etc.

im not talking big production line here.. i just love the whole market thing.. i did it for years and years in NJ,

and even tho it was more physical labor then my nursing job, i put my blood sweat and tears into it every weekend

and loved it because it was for me. im sure some of you know what i mean.

I Just feel like my green thumb has turnned a sick shade of yellow, and i should just quit trying to grow anything.


Sorry for the ranting.. hope it doesnt break any GW rules!


SillyB (mell)

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sillybugs(z10 FL)

I shouldnt say everything dies....i normally dont have problems with peppers.. they seem to grow no matter what dumb thing i do now.
and my tomatos grow OK but nothing worth selling.
The pepper and tomato seedlings just wont live in the cells for too long.. they get to a good hight but never fill in unless i plant them in the ground. and that a whole different story.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2004 at 9:56AM
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jayreynolds(zone 6/7)

Hi, silybugs. All of us get challenges sometimes, and feel that way too. I've heard that great things can be grown in Florida during the winter months when temperatures moderate, and folks up north begin to envy your opportunities!

Since you're new, you probably have alot to learn, participate in the Florida forum where plenty of other people share your trials. Build up that sandy soil, and if you have to, concentrate on plants that suit what nature gave you, rather than try to grow what you are used to somewhere else.
best of luck, stick with it.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2004 at 10:35AM
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Jim_Andrews(z5 VT)

Something to remember is that your gardening calendar will be exactly the opposite from up north. For instance - instead of planting your tomatoes in May, we put them in the ground in October. The summer months can be brutally hot here and the winter months are far more temperate - that's why everyone comes to visit here in November-April.

If you must plant certain things that are cooking in the torrid sun - try using some shade cloth. I use it to shade my more delicate plants from May to October otherwise they'd cook right to the ground.

You might want to visit the Florida forums, too.

Here is a link that might be useful: Florida Gardening

    Bookmark   August 18, 2004 at 6:10PM
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jayreynolds(zone 6/7)

Hey, I was thinking about what you could grow even during the hottest part of a Florida summer. How about Okra?

To my mind, it's got to be one of the all-time hot weather loving plants. Rather hard to find in some markets, because harvesting is difficult unless you wear long sleeves or are very handy with clippers and careful. We are getting $2.00/qt for it right now.

In a frost free place, or even a long-season area of Florida, the okra plant shoud become tree-like and need pruning back eventually. It should sell well in ethnic markets, too.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2004 at 9:03PM
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sillybugs(z10 FL)

well.. i know its in reverse to what im used to up north.. but the sad thing is.. i mean everything evaporates even durring the time i am supposed to be planting.

seeds just dont like me
BUT gardening is my addiction, so i got mad and got over it, there is no way i could ever stop trying.
too many things to plant.. not enough time on this earth to try them all, i dont want to waste anymore time :p


    Bookmark   August 19, 2004 at 6:08AM
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vegomatic(z5 BHSD)

If your soil's too sandy, it's probably drying out much faster than you expect. Gonna take a lot of humus and stuff to build it up. Work up small patches or grow in containers. Try several different things in one season to get past the experimental stage quicker.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   August 20, 2004 at 1:10AM
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vegomatic(z5 BHSD)

Another thought, are you properly hardening off the seedlings? Might take longer where you're at now.


    Bookmark   August 20, 2004 at 1:13AM
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adrianag(AL z7)

When in Florida, do what Floridian growers do:

July and August are your off-seasons. Then you have 2 main growing seasons: Sept-December and February- June. If you accept those seasons then you gear your production accordingly. I also highly recommend that you look into hydroponic production - the sandy soils in Florida are terrible and it takes a long time to build up the organic matter. Hydro gives you excellent control.

E-mail me if you want more information. I lived in Sarasota and was a market grower for 3 years, now I'm in Birmingham.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2004 at 11:33AM
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sillybugs(z10 FL)

I know i cant grow stoutside durring the summer..
im talking about the seedlings indoors. :/

And there is one tomato that i know of, you can grow just about year round here, its called the everglades tomato (a cherry tomato)

:) sb

    Bookmark   August 24, 2004 at 5:17PM
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lushoasis(z8B/Coastal GA)

I've been building up a sandy soil here for 3 years and still have to water twice a day during the hottest, driest months to make anything grow. Most veggies I now start in pots in a shady area and transplant them in the garden when they are hardy enough.

As far as selling vegetable transplants grown in pots, I find greens (unusual such as mizuna, red mustard, swiss chard, arugula) can be seeded outside in pots in Sept-Oct for sale in the fall market. As far as tomatoes, eggplant, and peppers, I seed these inside about New Year's Day to be ready for planting in early March.

One other techinique I use is...just plant some seeds every week...who knows water the weather will be and some will take...goood luck...deb

    Bookmark   August 25, 2004 at 12:55PM
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