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  • #46
    Originally posted by Dwight Schrute View Post
    Question for you guys. I have a spot in my yard where I've dug up a garden that gets perfect sun but seems to have poor soil. I've tried multiple years to get a garden going in this spot and haven't had much luck. I get tomatoes that are the size of a golf ball, a few zucchinis, no peppers, etc.

    Is it worth it to try to build raised beds, and if so how much can I expect to spend on soil for them? My guess on the size would be roughly 8x4x12" high, but possibly bigger.
    Remove any doubt and get a soil test from your local Extension Office or get a test kit from Amazon. Do other plants grow well in that area? Is there something under the surface....an old foundation, septic tank, etc. I was digging behind a house we were renting and found a brick cistern about a foot down. I like beds for lots of reasons. They work for me. Using those dimensions, you're going to need about 3.5 cubic yards of soil. That's a lot, maybe 25 full size wheel barrow loads. BUT that's a great size bed and should do really well. Don't use kiln dried or chemically treated lumber. If it was me, I'd use the cheapest masonry product to fit your budget. Really good soil, not mulch, will pay huge dividends.

    https://static1.squarespace.com/stat.../KY_8%3A31.pdf


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    • #47
      Originally posted by Uncle Dave View Post

      Remove any doubt and get a soil test from your local Extension Office or get a test kit from Amazon. Do other plants grow well in that area? Is there something under the surface....an old foundation, septic tank, etc. I was digging behind a house we were renting and found a brick cistern about a foot down. I like beds for lots of reasons. They work for me. Using those dimensions, you're going to need about 3.5 cubic yards of soil. That's a lot, maybe 25 full size wheel barrow loads. BUT that's a great size bed and should do really well. Don't use kiln dried or chemically treated lumber. If it was me, I'd use the cheapest masonry product to fit your budget. Really good soil, not mulch, will pay huge dividends.

      https://static1.squarespace.com/stat.../KY_8%3A31.pdf

      I don't think there's anything like that there but there used to be 3 huge pine trees in this location that the electric company came out and cut down before we bought the house - I've read those can make the soil too acidic for anything else to grow. Give the difficulty, I believe it.

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      • #48
        Originally posted by Dwight Schrute View Post

        I don't think there's anything like that there but there used to be 3 huge pine trees in this location that the electric company came out and cut down before we bought the house - I've read those can make the soil too acidic for anything else to grow. Give the difficulty, I believe it.
        Right. All of the conifers/evergreens will acidify soil. Wouldn't surprise me if the pH is under 6 which won't work for veggies. Easy to fix IF that's the problem.

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        • #49
          Getting Your Garden Started #2 Seasonal Planting and Planning


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          • #50
            Getting Your Garden Started #3 Seed Starting and Square Foot Gardening. Great discussion here......

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            • #51
              Getting Your Garden Started #4 Soil Texture and Water......IF you nurture and amend your soil with natural products like leaves, grass clippings, kitchen waste, garden waste, livestock mature, I.E. compost, it won't matter what you grow. You'll get solid yields.

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              • #52
                If anyone takes care of your own yard, now is the time to put down fertilizer with crabgrass preventer. If you do put down crabgrass preventer, you can't seed your yard for about 6 weeks.
                John 3:3

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                • #53
                  Low Tunnel February-March Check-In....Surviving the Arctic Blast.

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                  • #54
                    Originally posted by Uncle Dave View Post
                    Getting Your Garden Started #4 Soil Texture and Water......IF you nurture and amend your soil with natural products like leaves, grass clippings, kitchen waste, garden waste, livestock mature, I.E. compost, it won't matter what you grow. You'll get solid yields.

                    Was gonna get out and till the usual spot up but my Troy built has a flat. The valve stem broke off so now I have to get a new tire. No biggie. I have leaves and manure to put on it. I need to get that tire.

                    Uncle Dave, what is your opinion about putting charcoal ash on the garden? Never had a soil test but I noticed last year where we planted our jalapeños and green peppers that they did very well where I put the ash.
                    Isaiah 5:20

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                    • #55
                      BTW, Uncle Dave, candied jalapeños. Some call it cowboy candy. Oh boy that stuff is great. Canned a bunch last year. You can take the left over syrup and can that as well. Makes for a very good baste for pork, especially ribs.
                      Isaiah 5:20

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                      • #56
                        Originally posted by Blue Heaven View Post

                        Was gonna get out and till the usual spot up but my Troy built has a flat. The valve stem broke off so now I have to get a new tire. No biggie. I have leaves and manure to put on it. I need to get that tire.

                        Uncle Dave, what is your opinion about putting charcoal ash on the garden? Never had a soil test but I noticed last year where we planted our jalapeños and green peppers that they did very well where I put the ash.
                        I think wood ash is awesome for garden use. Folks have been using it for thousands of years. Good source of Potassium(K) running somewhere less that 5%. An excellent source of micro/trace minerals. It does contain lime so it can increase your soil pH. Rotate growing locations annually. Do what our ancestors did. This fall when you slaughter your feeder hogs, don't throw out the lard!!! Mix it with wood ash and make creamy, rich soap.

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                        • #57
                          Originally posted by Blue Heaven View Post
                          BTW, Uncle Dave, candied jalapeños. Some call it cowboy candy. Oh boy that stuff is great. Canned a bunch last year. You can take the left over syrup and can that as well. Makes for a very good baste for pork, especially ribs.
                          I've been thinking about cowboy candy for a while. How many jalapeno plants to you all grow? Last year I grew two plants and used them for poppers. Do you use half pints?

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                          • #58
                            Originally posted by Uncle Dave View Post

                            I've been thinking about cowboy candy for a while. How many jalapeno plants to you all grow? Last year I grew two plants and used them for poppers. Do you use half pints?
                            Last year we grew 6 plants and they just kept on producing. We gave a lot away, as well as made cowboy candy and some poppers on the grill. We used half pints, yes. I say "we" but I'm the only one that eats them in our home. I like doing a batch with seeds and a batch without. The batch without seeds I use a corer and it scrapes that inner layer just enough so they aren't the least bit hot.
                            Last edited by Blue Heaven; 03-05-2021, 10:25 AM.
                            Isaiah 5:20

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                            • #59
                              Originally posted by Uncle Dave View Post

                              I think wood ash is awesome for garden use. Folks have been using it for thousands of years. Good source of Potassium(K) running somewhere less that 5%. An excellent source of micro/trace minerals. It does contain lime so it can increase your soil pH. Rotate growing locations annually. Do what our ancestors did. This fall when you slaughter your feeder hogs, don't throw out the lard!!! Mix it with wood ash and make creamy, rich soap.
                              Yes we rotate our crops. Mom and Dad always say after a few years it's best to let the soil rest so till up a new spot like the Bible says but I don't have the land for that, lol. Few do, plus tilling up a new spot is hell on the body. Moved to our current spot 9 years or so ago and it about killed me breaking new ground with all this clay here. I have never gotten a pH test but I figured I probably should. I have a buddy with some horses so my manure supply is endless if I want it to be.
                              Isaiah 5:20

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                              • #60
                                We grow banana peppers. I like to stuff with a cream cheese mixture, wrap in bacon and put on the grill. We have also started growing pimentos. Fresh ones are delish fixed the same way.

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