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Old 03-02-2016, 09:37 AM
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I tried the eraser method, but I had a hard time getting the seeds in the hole. Then, do you fill the hole or add media to fill the hole?
I used to fill the hole with a nice fine vermiculite but when it ran out and I bought a different brand, that vermiculite was large granules. NOT handy! I even tried to reduce the consistancy by whizzing it a few times in an old coffee grinder but still not good. So now I just use the pencil point to scratch some soil into the hole and cover the seed. Works just as good.

Over the years I've figured out how many plants of what to make because I have limited space on the light shelves and no greenhouse to put them in later. Lately they've been hardening off on the front porch.
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Old 03-02-2016, 10:41 AM
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My greenhouse, in reality, isn't a greenhouse. It has no heating or insulation qualities. But, what would you call it? When the sun goes down or its overcast, the temperature drops. Slowly, but eventually equalizes with outside temps. A cold frame uses the heated soil to keep temperature at a tolerated level.
#1 reason I don't move warm vegetable starts to the greenhouse until night temperatures stay above acceptable levels.
I could fill black buckets with water and that heat source would suffice until the sun rises the next morning?
What about an old electric blanket underneath, or heating pads.....something along those lines?
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Old 03-02-2016, 10:42 AM
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Lately they've been hardening off on the front porch.
Been there & done that. Carry em out/then carry em in. I have made a quick errand and come back, plants had been scorched. The sun was brighter than i thought. Had to start all over. I learned the hard way. I use no lights for germination. And timing is my friend. Less work, less stress on me and on the little sprouts, too!
Here it is, 1st week in March, & I have cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, & lettuce in the greenhouse. I found bye starting seeds too early, they just set and wait for warm weather, like me, wait wait wait.
Our low last night was 30, but rabbit water bowls were frozen over. We have another cold night in the forecast, but warmer temps coming.
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Old 03-02-2016, 11:02 AM
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What about an old electric blanket underneath, or heating pads.....something along those lines?
Great idea! I have used a heat pad before. I germinate my seeds by the wood stove. Nice and warm. I used a heat bulb from an old chick brooder last night in the greenhouse. My wife will turn it off when the sun rises.
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Old 03-07-2016, 07:03 AM
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I planted three varieties of lettuce in (wide row) the garden last week, so I covered them with a floating row cover for protection. I noticed the grackles pacing across my garden yesterday morning. They wreck havoc on new sprouts and plants. The are not like the robins, who are searching for worms, they like fresh/tender greens!
We also have a warm/wet weather forecast in the next 10 days. I am moving tomato plants to the greenhouse as they sprout here in the house. My gardens have been cleaned and rototilled, so I am patiently waiting for proper planting time.

I stand corrected...... Starlings! They are a nuisance. They swirl in the sky in winter, flying from their roost to feeding areas. Spring brings them to every crevice/cavity in your home and out buildings for nesting spots.
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Old 03-07-2016, 06:28 PM
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The row cover. Being frugal, I bent clothes hanger wire into a half hoop to hold the cloth up. This also the way I make hoops for the cabbage.

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Old 03-07-2016, 11:21 PM
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Is that a breathable mesh or plastic?
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Old 03-08-2016, 06:34 AM
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Is that a breathable mesh or plastic?
This material is a woven mesh. Very light weight. The rain/moisture goes right through. Mainly used for insect control, but will deter light frost on vulnerable plants. A thicker material can be purchased for heavy frost protection. I purchased a 400' roll several years ago. I have used this pieces three years now. Any dirt and mud, once dry, will just shake off.

I invite you to check out my photo albums.
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Old 03-10-2016, 09:48 AM
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That row cover lasts a long time. Every once in a while I'll need to use it for short periods of time. A 400' roll? That will last you a good while.

This is where I got mine. They sell it by the foot (10' min) for .40/ft. Looks like they're out of the 100' roll so I don't see a price.

http://www.superseeds.com/collection...cover-per-foot
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Old 03-14-2016, 07:22 PM
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If I had the space, I would plant 100 pounds potato seed. I enjoy growing potatoes and could share my produce with family. Grandmother & I don't eat potatoes like we used to. Years ago, I thought a meal was not a meal without potatoes. This year well, I'm going to plant just one row, about 32' in length. I like red potatoes, so here is my seed potatoes I purchased at the farm store few weeks back. Giving them time to sprout, I can judge where I want to cut them into halves. Large potatoes can be cut into thirds or quarters, if you feel that is what you want to do. You should always have two eyes/sprouts on each piece.
Everybody has their own spin on raising potatoes, but I follow the methods taught me, by my folks. Potatoes are usually planted on good Friday. Why? Cause, that is just what they did! You cut the seed few weeks before planting time so the cut portion of the potato can heal over, dry up. This will keep the seed portion from decaying or become prone to disease.

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Old 03-14-2016, 08:42 PM
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I turned back my row cover today just to see what was growing under there? Sure enough, there were tiny lettuce plants growing there. Some annual weeds too. No, my garden isn't weed free like your led to believe by some gardeners. I do keep them under control, don't let them compete with the veggies for nutrients.

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Old 03-14-2016, 09:16 PM
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Love the Good Friday planting date.

I've always been told to prune roses on Saint Valentine's day. Why? Just 'cause LOL !
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Old 03-15-2016, 10:14 AM
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Looks like future salads are off and running! Are those onions or leeks to the left of the lettuce bed?
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Old 03-15-2016, 10:26 AM
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Looks like future salads are off and running! Are those onions or leeks to the left of the lettuce bed?
Porcelain garlic. Received my start from durgan.

http://durgan.org/2011/?p=4239

http://www.durgan.org/2014/October%2...20Garlic/HTML/
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Old 03-17-2016, 10:47 AM
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Re potato planting.......I'm trying an experiment, putting potatoes in a large plastic nursery pot. A LARGE pot. At what point during the green growth do you add more dirt? I can see the sprouts emerging, but do I let them get a certain height?
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Old 03-17-2016, 12:46 PM
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Re potato planting.......I'm trying an experiment, putting potatoes in a large plastic nursery pot. A LARGE pot. At what point during the green growth do you add more dirt? I can see the sprouts emerging, but do I let them get a certain height?
Good experiment. I have never grown potatoes in a container, tires, box, or etc. Never had the urge. Potatoes should be hilled up as high as possible when planted in a row/garden. Never cover the existing shoot. I suggest leaving the top 4-6" show for sure. I have added soil right up to the top when an usual cold/frost is in the forecast. I have accidently covered the shoot and it will have a tendency to die back. One event, i covered the stems with straw. The stems did not come through the straw. I went and uncovered the stems. They were decaying. After an event like this, it is wise to walk through the potato row and uncover the foilage.
Since new potatoes are grown above the seed, then earth/soil should be provided for a grow medium. Straw and mulch can be substituted. I hear where potatoes are grown in a stack of ties, but new potatoes are seldom grown more than 6-12" above the seed itself' no matter high tall the foliage goes.
This is my thoughts on the subject. Unlike sweet potatoes, when their vines touch the ground, roots are sent out and potatoes are formed. Could be many feet from the mother plant. I have never seen white/red potatoes do this. Really potato foliage should be called stems, not vines. Maybe somebody can prove me wrong?
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Old 03-17-2016, 03:50 PM
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My favorite potato varieties.... Red Pontiac, Irish Cobbler, & Kennebec. Neither of the first two varieties are available here locally? I have no idea why. We used to plant #20 red & #[email protected] of the white. Yep, our cellar was full and plenty left for seed.

My little garden has room for maybe 1-3 rows. I have never seen a potato beetle in 10 years I've grown a garden here. Knock on wood!
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Old 03-17-2016, 09:30 PM
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Two Bits, thank you for sharing your experiences. And thanks to Twice Bitten for the question. My sister is doing a similar bucket experiment using the bottom halves of two big plastic trash cans (bottoms cut out) and 'Walmart Red' potatoes that had 3" chitted sprouts coming out of them when bought. She's already bought several bags of cheap potting soil to "hill" them in the buckets. Do you think she has any chance of succeeding?

I've tried potatoes once before and had them nicely hilled, beautiful plants starting to flower and then total wilt over several days. After I pulled the plants I found tiny holes through the roots that I think (from what I've read) were due to wire worms. Never messed with potatoes again. Have you ever run into anything like that?
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Old 03-17-2016, 11:51 PM
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I have no doubt that it will work. I've tossed potatoes in the compost bin and seen them grow all summer. Harvesting potatoes, now that's a million dollar question! I have never seen potatoes grow through the season without producing some crop, may be a disappointment, but a crop.
The problem of growing potatoes in a container is the potato seed, needs nutrients to grow and produce a crop. Poor quality bags of potting soil contain little to no nutrients or organic matter. The three key minerals plants must obtain from the soil are nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. They also require calcium, sulfur, magnesium and trace amounts of other minerals. This is the way I grow a few potatoes.

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Old 03-18-2016, 10:35 AM
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Ugh...I am so jealous of all of you! We moved this winter and at this point I have no garden space. This Spring / Summer will be spent building a Walipini and planting trees.
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