Can I grow anything edible here?

gray53(8a GA metro Atlanta)December 31, 2011

I've got a 3 foot by 16 foot raised bed. It's only 4 or 5 inches high, which limits me to shallow-rooting crops. I won't be using any fertilizer, only compost and a green manure. It is located on the west side of a house and surrounded by trees, so no morning sun and only dapled afternoon sun. Is there anything edible I can grow on it?

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I am thinking you could grow lettuces, the leaf lettuces and like what is called mesclun mix. Probably radishes, brussel sprouts. I am thinking things that are somewhat small and cool season.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2011 at 11:15PM
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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

I agree with LA girl, and it would be worth trying greens like collards, kale, mustard, etc. But it's probably too late to plant them now. You could try for an early spring crop, planting say in late February or early March.

Any chance you could limb up some trees to allow more afternoon sun in? Most vegetables need six hours of direct sunlight a day, but in summer, they like that western sun to be a BIT dappled. If worst comes to worse, there are many beautiful shade plants that would do well: ferns, farfugiums, hellebores, purple oxalis, gingers, and more.

As far as the depth of the beds, you could dig down into the soil in the bottom, loosen and amend it. That's what I did to my raised beds. It takes a good bit of work, but it's totally worth it.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2012 at 9:56PM
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JimR36(5b CO)

I've gotten by with only 3 or 4" high raised bed. It also does not receive a huge amount of sun (mostly some afternoon). But it still has managed to grow and produce kale, zucchini, radishes, basil, and rosemary without any problems. I use organic soil, compost, and mulch. Maybe 70% soil, 20% compost, and 10% mulch.

I think you can be successful with yours, assuming there's enough "soil", and not just the "additives" (compost and manure).

    Bookmark   January 9, 2012 at 3:20PM
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I have little space and very little sun at all in spite of being on a southern slope - not a good situation. But, strange as it sounds, I am sure you can grow tomatoes and peppers, of course with lower yields than in full sun, if you put in nice robust plants. I do.

    Bookmark   January 16, 2012 at 12:33PM
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I'd grow ginseng, sounds like you have the right spot. If surrounded by hardwoods even better.Dappled sunlight is the key and the leaf litter helps.Ginseng growing can be very satisfying. in many ways. Jim

    Bookmark   March 29, 2012 at 4:21PM
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topsiebeezelbub(z7 Al)

What do you do with ginseng? My old veggie garden has gotten way to shady. I am trying a new spot, but wondering what to do with the old one...giant mulberries, maples, pecans, oaks. Read about truffles, but too complicated.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 2:20AM
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