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good, bad and questions

Posted by jodikay mn z4a (My Page) on
Tue, Jul 31, 12 at 22:20

Can't believe tomorrow is aug 1. My first year sfg has some good things, some not so good and a few questions.

Good: asparagus growing like a weed. i posted earlier this year and i guess i worried for nothing. strawberries also doing good. have seeded my second crop of spinach and radishes. onions have already fallen over and the potatoes are drying up. the eggplant is putting on fruit. way cool as i have never grown them before. peppers and celery also doing well.

Bad: cabbage! first i had those pesky cabbage worms and no matter how much picking and using BT nothing helped. now i am down to one white head of cabbage and the other 3 did not form heads at all. the remaining one has a nice size head. i will probably pick it soon. the 4 purple cabbage, well not sure what they will do. broccoli tasted good but nearly destroyed by the cabbage worm and i should have picked it sooner.

Bad: beets! they didn't grow last year (in non sfg). this year they finally grew - it took forever. i noticed quite a few getting to be about 1-2", perfect for pickling. however when i picked them, i only had about 20 that size, most were much smaller and quite a few really had no growth at all. i have re-seeded to see if i have any better luck for a fall harvest.

1. for those who grow eggplant, do you stake them? mine looks like i should have.
2. Any thoughts on why not having luck with beets?
3. I planted my cabbage 1 per square and they are crammed together. My hubby says i should only plant 4 in the whole 4x4 box. what do others do?
4. How do you determine how much to plant for canning purposes? I planted 8 squares of beets and did not have luck. I have 4 squares of carrots and wonder if i will have enough to even worry about canning. would a 4x4 for beets and carrots each work?

I am definately expanding next year (hubby agreed - yeah!) as i want more onions, peppers, carrots, beets(if i can get them to grow) and potatoes. I am also considering a 4x4 for blueberries. i have been doing a lot of research on growing them in containers. row covers or tulle are going to be my best friends next year for the strawberries, cabbage and broccoli.

one last question, do you plant your rhubarb in boxes? i have mine out in my non sfg garden and its taking up some space. wondering if i should move it out of the garden, make its own garden or put in sfg?

Here are a couple of pictures. one of the beds and one of the cabbage. not the best but the sun was out and hot!

wow, ok, lots i am asking but while disappointed in some things, very happy with others. i have been doing a lot of research on this forum, or trying to get my answers before posting. so thanks everyone for looking and offering any suggestions. its been quite the learning curve this year!




Follow-Up Postings:

RE: good, bad and questions


Just chiming in regarding the eggplants. I didn't stake mine either and now wish that I had. So I think we're in the same boat. :)


RE: good, bad and questions

Are you fertilizing at all? Beets are a root crop and need a good amount of phosphorus to develop nicely. I practice sfg, but I also use organic fertilizers to help build up soil nutrition. Personally I like espomas product line, but there are many good organic ferts on the market that should help you increase your production. Staking eggplants is a good idea, I usually do, and neglected to this year and they have been falling over as well.

RE: good, bad and questions

Try putting your cabbage 2 on one side of the box and 2 on the other side of the box. I see a lot of parts on each side of your bed that do not have anything growing. If you space them 2 by 2 I think you will have better luck. Also, you can cut of a couple of the huge leaves on the bottom and I don't think it will hurt production.

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