Clippings by b2alicia

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RE: Potatoes in container (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: Garden.Geek on 05.24.2013 at 11:21 am in Vegetable Gardening Forum

I'm growing potatoes for the first time this year and, due to lack of sufficient yard space, I decided to try the bag method. A friend if mine gave me a couple of her leftover garden soil bags and I used burlap sacks for the other two. They are all growing beautifully and I've really enjoyed watching how quickly they grow; it's incredible! :) Only problem I've run into is that I thing the bottoms of the burlap sacks are starting to rot because of all the rain we've had, so I'm going to have to fugue something out for that. Otherwise, This method has been incredibly easy and space-saving! :)
I only put two seed potatoes in each bag, so hopefully they'll have enough room to give me lots of yummy taters!

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clipped on: 05.25.2013 at 02:15 pm    last updated on: 05.25.2013 at 02:15 pm

RE: Back to cold (Follow-Up #12)

posted by: rouge21 on 05.13.2013 at 01:19 am in Perennials Forum

Definitely appropriate given the continuing cold "spring" weather.

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clipped on: 05.25.2013 at 12:46 pm    last updated on: 05.25.2013 at 12:46 pm

RE: Big dilemma! $150 gift card for Lowes (Follow-Up #13)

posted by: skybird on 01.09.2011 at 03:09 pm in Rocky Mountain Gardening Forum

I'll be interested to see what others think of that, b2, but I have a hard time seeing that as worth the money---especially for squash. If you decide you want to give them a little protection when they're small, I think floating row covers would be just as effective---and a lot cheaper. (Truth in Lending! I've never used them---am planning to start a thread in the next month or so with some questions about them! But other people around here use them, so hopefully they'll be along with an opinion on the subject!)

But, now that I've seen the ones you started from seed last year, I do definitely have some advice! [Who? Me? Advice??? ;-) ]

As someone on the Veggies thread said, I agree it's way better to just start squash directly in the ground---or, at least start them in pots just a week or two before putting out, and then keep the soil intact when you move them to the ground. But the main thing I'd like to recommend is to lose the peat pellets and pots! The may work ok in more humid places (tho I'm not sure I even agree with that!), but out here in our dry climate they can cause problems! I haven't used them for MANY years, but I "tried" to use them back in the 70's and found that it was extremely difficult to try to maintain the correct moisture level. They were always either too dry or way too wet! Then, when you plant them in the ground---if your plants make it that long---you need to remove the peat out here since it doesn't easily "go away" in the ground. IF you've managed to develop a good root system, at that point you tear it half apart! And if you leave the peat on and ANY of it is exposed above the surface of the soil, it "wicks" the moisture up and away from the roots. If you leave the peat mostly intact, but remove just the top part, it can take a long time for enough roots to effectively grow thru the peat---again, because of our dry climate. With the peat pellets, the issues are pretty much the same. Pure peat holds a LOT of water, and in looking at your seedlings that have started developing true leaves, they look very unhappy to me, and my first guess would be that they've been too wet. The root system of a plant is the most important part (think heart/circulatory system in a human being!), and if you put out a plant that has an inferior or a damaged root system, it may not have time to recover with our short summers. And as the one person on the veggie forum said, squash do have amazingly small and "delicate" root systems, so if that's "damaged," you're gonna have a problem.

Get some 2" and 3 1/2" plastic pots. You can use them over and over, and you can control your watering. The plug trays with the larger cells work ok for starting things too, tho you can't leave most things in them for very long. (Don't even think plug trays for squash!) Then get a good quality potting soil/mix, which will be mostly Canadian peat with perlite in it, and use that in the plastic pots. A "good quality" potting soil will be "light and fluffy" when it's moist!

Whatever you do, DO NOT use Hyponex! It's made up of mostly Colorado peat---which is "sedge peat"---which is MUCK! I don't know how they keep selling that stuff, but there are a lot of people in the world who think they can't grow plants! They're partly right! They CAN'T grow plants---in MUCK! But they think it's they're fault and they stop trying!

But with squash, I really do agree with their recommendation to plant them directly in the ground. It looks like you have some pretty good soil out there, and I bet you'll be surprised at how well they do. (And I think we established this last summer, but they do get a lot of sun, don't they?)

My squash plants are in some of the worst clay I have (getting a little bit better every year, but still has a ways to go!), and I always get big plants with HUGE leaves, but I get very few squash! My problem, though, is that my vegggie garden just doesn't get enough sun. After reading that veggie thread, tho, I think I may try the "crookneck" type this year. I've been growing the "straight" kind (Goldrush), and I thought it was pretty good, but with what people said about the crookneck having more flavor, I think I'll try it! Nothing ventured, nothing gained!!!

Skybird

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clipped on: 01.24.2011 at 07:10 pm    last updated on: 01.24.2011 at 07:10 pm

RE: Missing yummy southern crookneck squash (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: iam3killerbs on 01.09.2011 at 09:26 am in Vegetable Gardening Forum

No, seeds don't have an actual need for special soil to make them sprout. Seed starting potting soil is just a finer-grained mix that doesn't have big hunks of stuff to end up sitting on top of tiny seeds.

Squash have big seeds which make strong sprouts that can readily push their way through ordinary soil. You can't put them under rocks or logs, but they'll do fine in any kind of reasonable garden soil.

I've found that direct-seeded squash grow much better than transplants. Squash are noted for having delicate roots and they often take longer to recover from transplant shock than it takes for the seeds to grow to the transplant size.

They want full sun, can't take any frost, and shouldn't be planted until the soil has warmed. Cool climate gardeners can speed up the soil warming by using clear plastic tunnels over the area where the hills will be but you have to let the bees in when the plants are flowering to get any squash.

Squash are customarily planted in hills to ensure good drainage. To make a squash hill first dig a hole about 6-8 inches deep and a foot or so across. Fill it level to the ground with compost then mix in the soil you removed and shape a mound with a flat but slightly dished top.

To plant the seed use your finger to poke 4-6 holes about 1 inch deep in a wide circle on top of the mound. Drop a seed in each hole then gently close the holes and firm down the soil on top of them. Water carefully so as not to wash them away.

Thin to the best 2 or 3 plants after they have some true leaves. I know thinning hurts, but the roots need the room for the plants to be really productive.

Make your summer squash hills about 3 feet apart so you have room to get around and between them to harvest.

Given a reasonable amount of luck with the weather you'll soon be eating squash.

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clipped on: 01.24.2011 at 07:07 pm    last updated on: 01.24.2011 at 07:07 pm

RE: Missing yummy southern crookneck squash (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: farmerdill on 01.09.2011 at 08:32 am in Vegetable Gardening Forum

I get them from Twilley seed http://www.twilleyseed.com/. I get the 100 seed pkts but they have 25 seed pkts Gentry and Supersett at $1.75 Horn of Plenty $1.55.

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clipped on: 01.24.2011 at 07:05 pm    last updated on: 01.24.2011 at 07:05 pm

RE: Missing yummy southern crookneck squash (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: farmerdill on 01.08.2011 at 01:51 pm in Vegetable Gardening Forum

They need to be tranplanted before true leaves appear. They really do better direct seeded. They can be planted as early as snap beans (after the last frost). The old warted Summer Crookneck has good flavor. Of the hybrids Horn of Plenty is good for me.
Horn of Plenty It is small fruit.
Gentry is larger ( a semi crookneck) good producer Gentry 2
If you have problems with Geening, Supersett is excellent Supersett 4

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clipped on: 01.24.2011 at 07:04 pm    last updated on: 01.24.2011 at 07:04 pm

Missing yummy southern crookneck squash

posted by: b2alicia on 01.08.2011 at 01:36 pm in Vegetable Gardening Forum

I'm not ready to give up yet!

I grew up in the South, and my momma fixed the most wonderful squash dishes...prepared from those tender, yummy, delectable, southern, yellow summer crooknecks.

Then I lived in Dallas for several years, and still had easy access.
But when I moved up here to the cold frigid winters in Colorado, I never realized how much I would miss that squash!

I love living near the Rockies, and I don't miss the humidity, or the bugs, or the roaches. When I moved into this house 4 years ago (has a great back yard) , I have tried every year to grow crooknecks on my own, but no luck yet.

-I found a stand on Kipling and 32nd one year in June, and they were selling crookneck seedlings, and they grew just fine, but they were very bland and tasteless.

- Last year I tried, for the first time, to raise them from seeds. Being new to the whole process, I just ordered 3 different varieties from Burpees, but none of them did very well.

Also, that was before I found GardenWeb!

So, I was wondering, if anyone here had any recommendations.

Am I just out of luck?
-growing season too short?
-Any mail order places that you know of, with robust yummy crookneck seeds?

Last year, it was so cold in Denver even late into the month of May, that it was early June before I felt safe putting the seedlings into the ground.
I sprouted them in mid-April. I'm guessing that's too long for the baby plants to stay in the 'nursery'.
How do you decide when to start?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, Betty

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clipped on: 01.24.2011 at 07:02 pm    last updated on: 01.24.2011 at 07:03 pm