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Planting times * New to SFG

Posted by sethinalbany 5 ny (My Page) on
Mon, Mar 16, 09 at 12:27

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!!!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Planting times * New to SFG

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

RE: Planting times * New to SFG

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. ;-)

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