Planting times * New to SFG

sethinalbanyMarch 16, 2009

Hi everyone, I have been reading your forums all winter and it has finally thawed enough in Albany, NY for me to set up my first 4 x 4 SFG box this weekend. The forecast is highs in the 40's and 50's with lows hovering around freezing the next week, so I was thinking it might be OK to get a jump on some of the seeds that say "plant as soon as the soil can be worked." The soil in the area of my box is thawed at least 4-5" and should thaw more this week.

I was hoping to get some advice on this timing because I have read that if you plant certain things too early you get lower yields. The Farmer's almanac website pretty much indicates planting spring crops in May in my area but I don't think this is right. I kind of already started planting but I am concerned that I'm not doing this the best way possible, so I'll tell you what I am doing and please chime in with advice!

Spring 4 x 4 box:

- Snap Peas - Cascadia (3 squares, using Mel's conduit trellis w/ net)

- Carrots - Yellowstone (2 squares)

- Lettuce - red leaf (2 sq) & romaine (1 sq) - pre sprouting on paper towel

- Swiss Chard (2 squares) - pre-sprouting on paper towel

- Radish (2 squares)

- Onion - Bunching (2 squares)

- Spinach (2 squares)

I have squirrels and rabbits in my yard so I built a 2' high chicken wire box top to put on top. This should keep them from digging up the peas which I hear squirrels crave.

I figure once the peas are 12-24" high I will need to set up my trellis and either fashion another smaller lid for the rest of the box, and/or try to repel the squirrels (I was thinking of scattering some nets of human hair).

I covered the top with clear plastic for now while I wait for the floating row cover I ordered to arrive. With the weather being in the 50's I think that's cool enough not to overheat. I think that should be OK as long as I water every couple days, right?

Any thoughts and help appreciated!!!

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jbest123(Zone 5 PA)

You may be better off removing the clear plastic. When the conditions are right, the seeds will sprout on there own. The row covers after sprouting, is probably a good idea.


Here is a link that might be useful: Johns Journal

    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 3:37PM
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I'd keep the plastic on during the day and gather the sides up for air circulation...then overnight cover fully?

The seeds probably need some moisture, but not a soaking wet? Get too wet and cold and they will damp off? Not sure.

I started lettuce last year outside towards the end of April in zone 5.

Found a packet of Mesclun Gormet Greens Mixture seeds (Ferry-Morse) assortment of kale...lettuces...endive...arugula. Last year I was eating lettuce like a rabbit...this year the rabbit goes to Paris on vacation. ;-)

    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 6:40PM
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