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A Good Old Fashioned RedHotChiliPepper Grow Off

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
Hey, y'all look like gardeners, lol, so can I ask a general gardening question? What the <BLEEP> does "as soon as the ground can be worked" actually mean? Is it the same as "shovel day?" IOW, the first day you can bury a dead pet without using a pickax, lol? That's what I originally thought; but the first day - and the next week or two - after the ground can technically be dug with a shovel... the person on the end of the shovel is digging into mud. And who plants stuff in mud?

I always have trouble figuring out when to plant those "early season" crops :hmmmm:.

Not a problem with peppers and such, so this is technically off-topic. But I found myself thinking that one of the people posting in this thread might know.
 

Brewsterman

Well-Known Member
Like kismet said
I prefer a digging fork
some crops like cabbage can handle frosts down to -10 c you can plant potatoes, carrots. peas, beans, beets & garlic early but wait till ground temps are close to 60 f before planting corn, tomatoes & peppers. cucumbers & watermelons benefit from being planted on hills ( warm up faster & stems stay dry)
 

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
Down here it means soon as it's warm enough to get your lazy ass off the couch and start shoveling. Up north probably more like the permafrost thawed? Turn the old soil over and plant.
Yeah, that's about what I figured, as soon as the ground thaws out. But most of the time, when that happens (and for a while afterwards), it's all MUD. Worse is the rare year when things start to dry early, so I'll either go a diggin' or have someone till it (depending on which is in poorer shape, my body or my wallet) with plans to plant a couple days later after a final drying of the disturbed soil - and it rains for about eleven days straight.

If I plant in that... I might as well just throw my seeds into the nearest batch of freshly-poured concrete :( . Waterlogged, heavy, red-clay mess. Seems like whatever I add to it disappears before the next Spring and I have a brand new yard of mud each time. I even said screw it one year and brought in many bags of perlite, turned it into the morass... and the next Spring it was like trying to dig through wet rock again. I took ONE bag to Mom's house the same year and just four cubic feet of perlite did both her gardening areas. Getting a little... well, there's not much room for crop rotation there. But you could dig it with a kiddie beach shovel.

Grass loves the stuff (I occasionally see bits of green poking up through the snow in February, FFS!), but I assume that's because it has shallow roots.

IDK. Just venting, I suppose. Could be worse. If we didn't get all our rain at the beginning and end of the growing season, I'd probably be fat.

Hear that ? Time to get the cold weather crops in the garden.
I have three different kinds of peas. Haven't figured out whether I can (usefully) start them indoors or if I should wait and direct-plant them. The place I was told to get my "bean and pea soil innoculant" has gone out of business and nobody else seems to have it around here. Maybe I shouldn't bother planting peas? Never grew them in the location before.

Thinking about planting radishes and onions in my cannabis containers this year. That's the indoor garden, and it's too small for anything of bulk, but I like doing the onions and, while I've never tried it with radishes before, they're in-and-out pretty quickly.

Wasn't going to grow anything (other than cannabis, of course) this year, but then I ended up spending money I didn't really have on 20(?) different kinds of seeds. Probably be lucky to harvest two gnarly tomatoes, especially if I can't water them.

But, as a hobby, it's kind of like fishing, isn't it? I mean... since masochism isn't technically a hobby. . . .
 

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
Ha ha! That next-to-last picture - your hand looks like it has two green fingers!
 

Brewsterman

Well-Known Member
Yeah, that's about what I figured, as soon as the ground thaws out. But most of the time, when that happens (and for a while afterwards), it's all MUD. Worse is the rare year when things start to dry early, so I'll either go a diggin' or have someone till it (depending on which is in poorer shape, my body or my wallet) with plans to plant a couple days later after a final drying of the disturbed soil - and it rains for about eleven days straight.
To break up clay the best thing is organic matter> leaves, dry grass clippings ,chipper shredded branches, or peat moss. Sandy soils don't mix well with clay (mistake lots make)
mix into garden in fall during summer add dry grass clipping around plant ( to kill weeds & conserve moisture) add more leaves & grass in fall repeat
The worms will move in & breakdown the Organic matter & leave you with Nutes & aerations

You could also get some tree pots (landscapers, cheap or free) plant your tomatoes ,peppers pumpkins, cucumbers, ect in them with better soil dig 4-6" into the clay soil & let the plants roots grow out the drain hole into the poor soil.
That whey they stay high and dry if you get a wet week
 

andIhalped

Well-Known Member
To break up clay the best thing is organic matter> leaves, dry grass clippings ,chipper shredded branches, or peat moss. Sandy soils don't mix well with clay (mistake lots make)
mix into garden in fall during summer add dry grass clipping around plant ( to kill weeds & conserve moisture) add more leaves & grass in fall repeat
The worms will move in & breakdown the Organic matter & leave you with Nutes & aerations

You could also get some tree pots (landscapers, cheap or free) plant your tomatoes ,peppers pumpkins, cucumbers, ect in them with better soil dig 4-6" into the clay soil & let the plants roots grow out the drain hole into the poor soil.
That whey they stay high and dry if you get a wet week
Excellent advice! Organic matter & mulch are the way to go.
I live in area with very clayey native soils. Many, if not most, avid gardeners use raised beds for that reason. Containers are just another way to do it. One can cut costs a bit by mixing in native soils into the soil mix in containers/raised beds. Not just a cost cutter--some clay content is beneficial.
 

andIhalped

Well-Known Member
Thanks for tip on soil prep. I need to do the same here. I'm thinking I might actually grow everything in pots this year so that the garden bed can take a year off.
Letting soils go fallow has benefits. But while they're fallow, adding compost periodically will help soil structure & fertility. It doesn't need to be tilled in, that'll happen over time in a healthy garden. Mulching helps with structure, fertility, & keeping down weeds.

I always get noticeably better yields in plots after a year or two of fallow. One of my small beds is getting a rest this summer.

Grow on!
 

BeezLuiz

Grow Journal of the Month: Nov 2018

BeezLuiz

Grow Journal of the Month: Nov 2018
I have three different kinds of peas. Haven't figured out whether I can (usefully) start them indoors or if I should wait and direct-plant them.
Usually with peas and beans you would direct-plant them. I don't think they transplant very well.
 

BeezLuiz

Grow Journal of the Month: Nov 2018
Letting soils go fallow has benefits. But while they're fallow, adding compost periodically will help soil structure & fertility. It doesn't need to be tilled in, that'll happen over time in a healthy garden. Mulching helps with structure, fertility, & keeping down weeds.

I always get noticeably better yields in plots after a year or two of fallow. One of my small beds is getting a rest this summer.

Grow on!
Good advice. I think I might get my soil tested, then amend accordingly, then leave it fallow for the year. I'll put the tomatoes and peppers in containers and place them on top of the garden bed (best sun in the yard, and auto watering system).
 
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