Planting Plans for 2014

littlelizzy123January 12, 2014

What are your plans for this year? New projects? Trying anything new and exciting? Growing an old favorite you just can't live without?

I'm working on my planning this year, trying succession, fall planting and overwintering. Colorado weather is notoriously uncooperative, but we'll give it a go! I'm planning on keeping a journal to look over next year to see where I could have made improvements.

As well as setting up a proper irrigation system (soaker hoses and spliced cheap hose with shut offs) I'm building a few new garden boxes, and a few row covers for a fall garden of Space spinach, mache, and Bright Lights Swiss chard. Going to try staggered plantings of White Satin, Purple Haze, Amarillo, and Shin Kuroda carrots with a final sowing of Nelson for overwintering. Will also be trying a mix of lettuces and bush beans for staggered and succession planting as well.

Building trellises for Sweet Meat and Butternut squash, Early Frosty and Aldermann peas, Golden Gate pole beans, General Lee cucumbers, Eight Ball zucchini, and New Queen icebox melons. I will be trying a wood frame with eye screws along the edges and heavy twine pulled between the screws. That way, the frame can stay attached to the box, but the jute twine can be cut down along with the dead plants and put right into the compost pile. :)

Ordered some Dark Red Norland potatoes. This is a first, but I don't have the room for proper hilling in the ground. I'm going to try bamboo towers. I have came into possession of some truly ugly bamboo blinds, which I will be reusing for potato bins. I will line the sides with straw, plant the potatoes, fill with soil, and hill them up a few times. We will see how these turn out. If they are not so good, I might have to find a bit of room to make a proper potato bed...

Also going to try a Three Sister's plot with my little nieces. We will try Luscious sweet corn, Rattlesnake dry pole beans, and Butternut squash. I figure it's something easy to plant and care for and teach them a little about the virtues of good old dirt!

Starting a lot of seeds inside this year as well. Going to try Ventura celery, Lincoln leeks, Varsity and Red Cippolini onions, Jubilee, Indigo Rose, and Honeydrop cherry tomatoes, Gold Star bell peppers and Czech Black hot peppers, and Fiesta Broccoli. I've never grown broccoli, leeks, or celery, so it should be fun experiment!

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jaliranchr(z5 EC CO)

Sounds good, littlelizzy. I'm still sorting through my seeds and figuring out what I want this year. Potatoes were ordered. I have planted them in containers for years after driving rain and hail washed out the hills. I just grab whatever I have and keep dumping soil in them. It works. Shrug.

Tomatoes are always my biggest project, but I don't have to finalize that until mid-March. I already have a dozen selected, mostly my reliable varieties. The peppers will be sown soon and I'm pretty well set on those selections. Everything else is still being decided. All those choices to help pass the winter days.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2014 at 7:16PM
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(Oh, it is just agony making these decisions ;o)!

Keeping a journal for a few years is a great idea. It doesn't have to be daily but it is real tuff to remember things from 12 months ago. A couple of seasons to refer back to, surprising how useful! Life and success is all about timing. The garden is all about life. (My philosophical moment ;o)

I am most happy as a gardener to reach that moment when I have cucumbers, ripe tomatoes and sweet corn! Leading up to that, I've got the green beans, peas and all those greens! Those things can be my early summer and, maybe, my fall crops. I have learned that they must be sown mid-summer, tho. Good fortune may allow a warm September and an October frost.


    Bookmark   January 12, 2014 at 10:42PM
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highalttransplant(z 5 Western CO)

Running a bit behind last year, but have been sorting through pepper seeds to narrow my selection. I was so short on time last season, that I didn't even bother to save seeds for any of the tomatoes, and only a few of the peppers, though I am sure I can find enough viable seeds in the seed boxes to fill the garden with pepper and tomato plants, LOL!

Still not sure if I'll have enough time to handle the community garden plot this year or not. I realize that there are seasons to life itself, not just the garden, but I am tired of my personal life feeling like tornado season, and hope that I am able to enjoy the garden this year, and not have it feel like another job to do ...

Plus, my computer crashed in the fall, and I am having to use the kids, which doesn't have any of my germination charts, seed inventory lists, etc. Their computer isn't even hooked up to the printer, so even if I create new files, I can't print them out yet. Sigh ...

Yes, I know I'm a bit OCD when it comes to gardening, but organizing and planning is all part of the fun for me.

I may put a few of the really slow germinators in some dirt, just to say I've gotten started.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 1:47PM
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I plan to start a lot from seed this year, which is new for me. I've started cucumber and zucchini in the garden in the past, but this year I'm going to dive right in and do pretty much everything from seed. I may regret it in a couple of months when I'm trying to figure out how to be organized about it!

As far as new veggies, I'm planting kohlrabi (if I spelled that correctly), cabbage and patty pan squash. I am also trying a few things that I haven't had great success with in the past, and I'm just going to be more thoughtful about where and when I plant them -- eggplant, cantaloupe, and salad greens.

I just ordered my seeds from Park seeds and I am really excited to get them. Now I just need to do some more reading about what to do when, and I need to clean out my garden shed and organize it - would be more fun if I wasn't trying to do it at odd hours when I'm either not working or when the toddler is asleep :)


    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 3:14PM
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gjcore(zone 5 Aurora Co)

I haven't yet got around to choosing the different varieties to try yet though I still have a pretty good stash of seeds from the last few years. I'm still looking at my 4 year poster board where I pencil everything down that I've planted. Almost time to start filling in a plan.

It's almost time to start onions and celery probably about the first week of February. Celery grows so agonizingly slow for the first 3 months. Peppers I'll try to get going sometime mid February.

I'm gearing up for the plant sale this year. I have a better idea what people are looking for after being involved in that for a few years. Mostly people are looking for rosemary,basil,parsley, cilantro and dill. I can probably sell all of the rosemary and basil I can get ready. So far I have about 25 2 year old rosemary plants and 125 smaller ones. I suspect some of the cuttings are not going to make it. They are out in the coldframes. I've started basil indoors already and my plan is to get about a dozen nice mother plants and then take cuttings from those when the time is right.

I'm also planning on using my mid-tunnels quite a bit this spring to get a jump on the tender plants. Not sure if they will make it but I've already panted peas in the tunnel. If they don't make it then it's not a big deal. For sure I will try peas in the tunnel again.

I've had a hard time with tomatoes diseases the last few years and might grow hybrids this year instead of heirlooms.

Maybe the only exciting new thing I have lined up is Royal Blue Passion flower. I'm sure to find some other surprises to start.


    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 8:37PM
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Got my seed order into Fedco. They don't do big and glossy but have reasonable prices. Our gardening group does a group order and we get a discount depending on the size of the order and no postage. They have an online order as well. I am cutting down a little more each year. Will only have 1 smaller hoop house and raised beds out front. Have sown the beds in back back to grass so watering will be easier. So the things axed this year are soy beans, kohlrabi, broccoli, cauliflower and Brussel sprouts.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2014 at 11:31PM
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david52 Zone 6

Put in my order to Johnny's yesterday, forgetting the 'highlander chili' so had to do a separate order for that. :-(

Diva cukes, Cha-cha squash, Jambalaya okra, and large leaf basil. I have a packet of the later, but its now 4 years old.

I am still trying to dehybridize cha-cha winter squash, but this is a backup.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2014 at 10:26AM
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Had good luck with Kale last year, the first year I planted it. I'm still getting used to using it, but I like it. Same for Swiss Chard, so will be growing more of both. I will be planting corn this year. And cucumbers, cabbage, onions, and peppers. I grew quite a bit of herbs but never used any of them. I just haven't learned to cook with them much. They will probably come back by themselves, I think. Of course, it goes without saying that there will be tomatoes.

I still have quite a few seeds from Gurneys, but have to say I wasn't impressed with the plants that grew from most of them. Especially the radishes. I had large beautiful tops but no radishes to speak of under the ground, and what did grow was stringy and too hot. I won't be ordering anything else from that company.

I mentioned on another post that I will be putting in some rain gutter gardening with float valves to reduce the amount I have to irrigate. My raised beds are on my lawn so they get watered when the grass does. My grow boxes will be used again too.
I wish you all happiness -- Grant

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 5:34PM
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I can hardly believe that I am admitting that I may downsize significantly this year. I tried that in 2012 by going from 3 offsite gardens to 2 offsite gardens. The result: I expanded the big veggie garden in 2013 to make up for every square foot that I had walked away from the year before.

That 2013 expansion, actually makes possible adding even more square feet in 2014, walk away from the little veggie/dahlia/shady garden, or not. Yeah, I could give up all that and end up with more square feet, not less.

There has to be some reasoning it out. I must NOT add any more work! I am just to olde . . .

One step at a time, Steve! First I have to figure out how to keep all these wonderful catalogs coming to me while not going completely nutz with seed orders! I grow enough in my little greenhouse & tunnels to fill most any size garden in May. May is a long way off. . .

My route towards enlightenment - yammering away about putting seeds in dirt. Ha.


    Bookmark   January 25, 2014 at 8:12AM
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david52 Zone 6

It starts with the seeds, Steve. I always plant at least 4X what I actually want to grow, and then they all sprout, and then I figure, what the heck, let me transplant them into small pots, and then June rolls around and here I am with 100 tomato plants, 150 pepper plants, etc, and I figure, well, let me keep some spares just in case, and then I figure, why not try planting them closer, and so it goes.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2014 at 12:15PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

I've been trying to make a seed order the past few days. I guess I haven't ordered seed in awhile, but sure seems higher priced than I remember. And I'm ordering from a company with reasonable prices, maybe even low at times. And no shipping and I ended up with a $78. total. So I'm back to whittling down my order today.

I've started researching different varieties and how others have liked them and that has taken a few off my list. And I'm making myself decide 'where they are going' so I make sure I have the room for them all. Seed catalogs really get you, don't they? [g]

    Bookmark   January 28, 2014 at 7:48AM
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