My first ever crop report (from Portland, OR)

growinmyown(8)September 18, 2008

I was intrigued and then excited about using SFG when I was doing research on how to start a small "garden in 'da hood." I am thrilled with my first attempt! We built 4 boxes: one 3x8, one 2x3, one 6x2, one 6x5. The 6x5 is a little hard to work with, I'm short and can't stretch that far! I also took out the 6x2 after rearranging my planting grid for next season. I am growing for a family of two and started everything from Ed Hume seeds, outdoors.

I used Mels book for the box building, soil recipe, watering, and plant spacing; the Farmers Almanac for planting dates; and the local extension service for pest, and other local, information. I had no pest problems except for squirrels and bird netting solved that.

Scallions, green onions, Evergreen White Bunching - grew great. I planted 4 squares a week apart. I think I'll add two more squares, they were yummy.

White onions, Walla Walla sweets, were very small, I'm sure that I harvested them too soon - mid August - will wait longer next year. I planted 4 squares a week apart which was fine.

Red onion, Red Globe, same as white onions above.

Leaf lettuce, Salad Bowl, planted too much! Will plant four plants per square, 3 weeks apart, 4 squares.

Perpetual spinach, Green Leaf Chard, planted too much also - it bolted before I could use it all! Will plant 4 plants per square, 3 weeks apart, 4 squares.

Carrots: I planted 4 types. They all grew great. The taste testing was fun. We decided that Ingot, Hybrid, Long Nantes Type and the Imperator tasted and grew best so we'll plant those again. Planted 4 squares and will add two more squares next year. I am going to experiment with a winter crop.

Squash: Buttercup, Burgess, one grew and tasted yummy, one started growing and rotted off. Two 8' runners grew out into the yard and I think that the root growth couldn't/ wasn't/isn't sufficient for them. I cut them off at about 3 feet and they died. There are two more smaller runners going that have 3 blossoms each so we are hoping they produce.

Zucchini! lol. I wanted 4 plants but my boyfriend talked me into settling for 1 which is perfect - a sqaush a week is fine.

Bush Acorn, Table King - I planted one, it has 5 blossoms that are growing nicely. Should be ready end of October.

Green beans, Blue Lake Pole - I planted 2 hills of 5 beans each. They are growing great! They are growing up a nylon netting attached to a fence that is a foot behind the box. We have fresh beans every day or two.

What didn't work: Broccoli, a lettuce mix, Jalapeno, green bell pepper, Sandia Sugar Baby watermelon.

I'll try again with started peppers next season. Probably won't bother with broccoli or watermelon. Just didn't like the lettuce mix.

I also put 2 raspberry plants in the ground that are doing great.

I planted 3 types of tomatoes in Mels Mix in pots that will be a source of more experimentation! :) The Sun Gold cherry type did ok - one good crop. The San Marzano and Bonny Best types did not. They were all organic starts. I'm going to try the regular old "Fred Meyer specials" next year.

I have more experimenting to do. I am very happy with what has been produced so far. Everything has looked and tasted good. I did one fertilization about mid-season with Alaska Fish Fertilizer.

Kind of a long post but I hope it helps someone. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments. I am always looking for ways to improve my garden.

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Good job! Not everybody has such good luck on their very first attempt.

Did you start your Walla Walla sweets from seed? I have always purchased bunches of them in early spring (they look like tiny green onions, and come tied together in bunches of about 50). I space mine about two inches apart, but I pull every other one and use for green onions, so the main crop ends up being about 4" on center, as they can get very large. You'll know when they're mature, as the tops will fall over, but I find myself using them in all stages of growth.

I like Ed Hume seeds. I've had really good luck with them, and they are reasonably priced. I used to buy Burpee, but had a couple of varieties this year that didn't do well, so I switched back to Ed Hume. They are more widely available here in E. Washington, too.


Here is a link that might be useful: Annie's Kitchen Garden

    Bookmark   September 18, 2008 at 3:35PM
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sinfonian(U8b A2 S5 SeaWA)

Hey another PNW gardener! Grats on your experience. My first year is still coming on strong and I've learned a TON. Glad you did so well!

And I got my seeds from Territorial. They're just down south of you in Cottage Grove. Heck, you could probably go down there yourself to get seeds.

I'm not certain Ed Hume isn't Monsanto-proof, but I did buy one packet of radishes from him as they were cheap. I've met Ed before and he's cool, but I'm not sure about his seeds. Glad they work well for you Granny! I feel better about them.

Here is a link that might be useful: Sinfonian's garden adventure!

    Bookmark   September 20, 2008 at 9:46PM
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Looks like we got the whole coast here, lol. We're just south of Salem. Grats on the amazing garden! I DID NOT KNOW territorial was in here in OR!! I'll have to buy a bunch from them, lol. Have any of you guys got ideas on how to deal with the rain when it starts?

    Bookmark   September 20, 2008 at 10:46PM
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