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Need some gardening help, please

 
NothingFancy

User ID: 31585590
United States
02/11/2013 06:06 PM

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Need some gardening help, please
This will be the first year I have ever planted a vegetable/fruit garden.

I am new to this but from all of the information I have learned from this site, it is the best thing I can do.

Since I am a novice, any tips or advice would be appreciated. Obviously I know how to plant as I've planted many flower gardens, just not vegetable/fruit gardens. Is there a better selection to plant? I have a decent space to plant the garden, so size isn't an issue.

I would also like to learn about canning but I am pretty sure my Mom can help me with that. Thank you...I will check back later. :)
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 33972399
United States
02/11/2013 06:14 PM
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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Do not try to work the soil when it is too wet. You'll get big clods that will ruin your garden.

If you want to not work every year try raised perma bed gardening. It is really the smart way to garden. You'll get a lot more food per foot with a lot less long term effort.

Stagger your planting on certain crops like squash. They have a fruiting limit, after which they die. Plant one or two every six weeks.

Either don't use any pesticides (better learn a lot) or be prepared to use a lot. There is no middle ground.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 10363614
Canada
02/11/2013 06:21 PM
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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Find out the Zone in your area, and look for edibles that can grow in said Zone [link to planthardiness.ars.usda.gov]

Find out your soil type... Go to the nursery and ask them what kind of soil is in your area. Some soils are excellent, some poor.

Before the growing season starts if your area experiences winter, plant your seeds in individual drainage containers and plant the container directly in the soil with the rim above the soil- don't remove it from the container- This helps protect the fragile young roots.

Turn the earth with with a fork, not a shovel, dig small gulleys or trenches to water your plants instead of pouring water on the plants directly.

Plant companion plants known for anti pest properties or soil conditioning properties.

Plant traps... cups filled with beer and buried halfway into the ground drowns slugs.

Rotate your plot so one plot is vacant for 12 months straight. This allows the soil to rest.
NothingFancy (OP)

User ID: 31585590
United States
02/11/2013 06:23 PM

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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Do not try to work the soil when it is too wet. You'll get big clods that will ruin your garden.

If you want to not work every year try raised perma bed gardening. It is really the smart way to garden. You'll get a lot more food per foot with a lot less long term effort.

Stagger your planting on certain crops like squash. They have a fruiting limit, after which they die. Plant one or two every six weeks.

Either don't use any pesticides (better learn a lot) or be prepared to use a lot. There is no middle ground.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 33972399


Thank you. I never thought about staggering and I am going to read up on pesticides. (I'd rather not use any so it looks like I have some homework)
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 33585838
United States
02/11/2013 06:26 PM
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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Depending on the amount you want to grow, go to the library and check out a book on square foot gardening....best way to plant your first garden and get to know your different choices.

good luck
NothingFancy (OP)

User ID: 31585590
United States
02/11/2013 06:26 PM

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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Find out the Zone in your area, and look for edibles that can grow in said Zone [link to planthardiness.ars.usda.gov]

Find out your soil type... Go to the nursery and ask them what kind of soil is in your area. Some soils are excellent, some poor.

Before the growing season starts if your area experiences winter, plant your seeds in individual drainage containers and plant the container directly in the soil with the rim above the soil- don't remove it from the container- This helps protect the fragile young roots.

Turn the earth with with a fork, not a shovel, dig small gulleys or trenches to water your plants instead of pouring water on the plants directly.

Plant companion plants known for anti pest properties or soil conditioning properties.

Plant traps... cups filled with beer and buried halfway into the ground drowns slugs.

Rotate your plot so one plot is vacant for 12 months straight. This allows the soil to rest.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 10363614


Wow, this is excellent information. I do experience winter where I am at so I guess I should start the seeds now?
NothingFancy (OP)

User ID: 31585590
United States
02/11/2013 06:28 PM

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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Depending on the amount you want to grow, go to the library and check out a book on square foot gardening....best way to plant your first garden and get to know your different choices.

good luck
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 33585838


Thank you :)

I want to be successful at this. I want to be able to teach my girls so when they get older, they can do this as well. Who knows what they will be eating when they get older and I'd like them to have some control over that, at least.
AlcoholicRunner
I abduct humans and drink at the same time.

User ID: 32069520
United States
02/11/2013 06:30 PM

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Re: Need some gardening help, please
[link to forums2.gardenweb.com]

I go to gardenweb often for various stuff. Also visiting your county extension office website is another good place as well to find out specific details for your area.
NothingFancy (OP)

User ID: 31585590
United States
02/11/2013 06:35 PM

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Re: Need some gardening help, please
[link to forums2.gardenweb.com]

I go to gardenweb often for various stuff. Also visiting your county extension office website is another good place as well to find out specific details for your area.
 Quoting: AlcoholicRunner


Thank you.

I already see some threads that will answer a lot of my questions.
GFX guy

User ID: 9776422
United States
02/11/2013 06:36 PM
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Re: Need some gardening help, please
These may be helpful to add to your bookmarks...

Forum for help and information:
[link to www.permies.com]

Heirloom seeds:
[link to rareseeds.com]

Organic supplies and information:
[link to www.groworganic.com]

Videos for growing in an urban environment:
[link to www.youtube.com]


Best of luck OP!
broccoli
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 12083853
United States
02/11/2013 06:37 PM
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Re: Need some gardening help, please
This will be the first year I have ever planted a vegetable/fruit garden.

I am new to this but from all of the information I have learned from this site, it is the best thing I can do.

Since I am a novice, any tips or advice would be appreciated. Obviously I know how to plant as I've planted many flower gardens, just not vegetable/fruit gardens. Is there a better selection to plant? I have a decent space to plant the garden, so size isn't an issue.

I would also like to learn about canning but I am pretty sure my Mom can help me with that. Thank you...I will check back later. :)
 Quoting: NothingFancy


If you are anywhere west of the rockies you might seriously concider building a covered area for your gardening. Chem trail fallout is very damaging to many plants.
NothingFancy (OP)

User ID: 31585590
United States
02/11/2013 06:41 PM

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Re: Need some gardening help, please
These may be helpful to add to your bookmarks...

Forum for help and information:
[link to www.permies.com]

Heirloom seeds:
[link to rareseeds.com]

Organic supplies and information:
[link to www.groworganic.com]

Videos for growing in an urban environment:
[link to www.youtube.com]


Best of luck OP!
broccoli
 Quoting: GFX guy


If you are anywhere west of the rockies you might seriously concider building a covered area for your gardening. Chem trail fallout is very damaging to many plants.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 12083853


Perfect GFX guy, thank you.

AC, I live in the southeastern part of Pennsylvania.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 34185800
United Kingdom
02/11/2013 06:43 PM
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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Get an electric tiller.
Raised beds are easiest to deal with and keeps your plots neat. Rotate varieties each growing season, meaning never grow the same thing in the same plot in succession.
Grow potatoes and carrots in tubs, they are deep and the soil is soft which is best.
Do not completely remove all weeds and unwanted, they communicate with each other and produce better results from happy plants.
Find out what flower varieties attract bugs like black fly etc., plant them near by, but not too near and this will hopefully keep them off your produce before you need to use pest control. Marigold is an excellent natural pesticide.
Many people keep their produce totally separated from all other plant life, and this is one of the problems of bug infestation.

Just relax, plant, love and nurture and you will be rewarded.
AlcoholicRunner
I abduct humans and drink at the same time.

User ID: 32069520
United States
02/11/2013 06:46 PM

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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Good luck! I've had to build a small raised veggie bed with cinder blocks on top of limestone bedrock.

You wouldn't believe what I did with mine. I was like a mad scientist trying everything to see what happens. I had tomato plants with small sized tomatoes growing like it was on steroids. Lol. (Small sized tomatoes plant was supposedly best for my hot area in Texas).

Here's what I used (organic gardening)

Zeolite
Expanded shale
Turface
loamy soil
liquid seaweed
liquid fish fertilizer
Any organic fertilizer including cheapass animal feed like soybean meal, alfalfa pellet/meal, etc
Actinovate
Biozome (Maybe Lowe's sells Jobe's with Biozome in it where you live?
I'm sure there are more that I'd forgotten about.
NothingFancy (OP)

User ID: 31585590
United States
02/11/2013 06:46 PM

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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Just relax, plant, love and nurture and you will be rewarded.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 34185800


I can't wait! The relaxing part should come. Right now I am nervous, haha. It's silly I know but I am very excited.

Maybe if I do a really great job, I will take pictures and share.

Thank you everyone for all of your suggestions.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 10363614
Canada
02/11/2013 07:50 PM
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Re: Need some gardening help, please
Find out the Zone in your area, and look for edibles that can grow in said Zone [link to planthardiness.ars.usda.gov]

Find out your soil type... Go to the nursery and ask them what kind of soil is in your area. Some soils are excellent, some poor.

Before the growing season starts if your area experiences winter, plant your seeds in individual drainage containers and plant the container directly in the soil with the rim above the soil- don't remove it from the container- This helps protect the fragile young roots.

Turn the earth with with a fork, not a shovel, dig small gulleys or trenches to water your plants instead of pouring water on the plants directly.

Plant companion plants known for anti pest properties or soil conditioning properties.

Plant traps... cups filled with beer and buried halfway into the ground drowns slugs.

Rotate your plot so one plot is vacant for 12 months straight. This allows the soil to rest.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 10363614


Wow, this is excellent information. I do experience winter where I am at so I guess I should start the seeds now?
 Quoting: NothingFancy


[link to www.almanac.com]

This will tell you the last calculated frost date for your area... Start your plants anytime indoors but shouldn't exceed more than 1 month before the last estimated frost date.

Keep in mind that your plants need good light and the container needs to be moist all the time... Not chronically soggy wet because the roots can rot but at the same time not too dry because the roots will dry and stunt the plant growth and cause other problems. You could put your containers in a pan and fill the pan up with water... this way roots won't be disturbed as the water wicks up, but of course keep in mind the soggy issue...

Too low in light, and your plants will be lanky, this is partly the reason why planting before the bright summer is tricky.

I have found it easier to feed plants with chemical fertilizers since these fertilizers tend to be neutral between acid and alkaline which is what many plants prefer and contain many important nutrients and minerals like magnesium. I recommend watering with a much diluted fertilizer solution every time, instead of large prescribed dosages every few waterings.

Take advantage of every square inch, but be aware that planting plants too closely together is not good since the stalk and leaves are only a narrow element of the larger root ball beneath it. Competition isn't good for plants and you will pay for it in yield, so try to plant it according to seed package recommendations.

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