Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Experiments in Vegetable Gardening

This past weekend we went out to the farmers market and Lowe’s to get seedlings and other planting supplies for this year’s garden.  We always have a so much trouble deciding what we want, and we usually go overboard!

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We’re keeping it it to what has worked for us in the past – tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers.  We just like a lot of variety of each Smile  Here’s a complete list of what we have planted:

  • Early Girl Tomatoes
  • Bush Goliath Tomatoes
  • Roma Tomatoes
  • Husky Cherry Red Tomatoes
  • Super Sweet 100 Tomatoes
  • Big Early Bell Peppers
  • Red Beauty Sweet Peppers
  • Golden California Wonder Sweet Peppers
  • Jalapeno Peppers
  • Burpless Cucumbers

We grow everything organic, since we prefer organic produce when possible and figure at-home cultivation is the cheapest way to get it!

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Hubs rigged up a new trellis system involving both wire and rope this year that should really help utilize all the vertical space we can.

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The wire goes across the bottom and top, and once vertically down the center – the intention is to give it strength.  Then he added ropes to add guidance for the vines once they start developing.  As the plants grow, Hubs will add more horizontal wire as needed to support the plants.  We will use garden twist ties to keep the vines growing up the trellis.  Right now the plants are still small seedlings, so no need for that yet!

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The tomatoes we planted next to the trellis are indeterminate varieties, which means that they are vine-style tomatoes that will grow all over the place.  Late in the summer, the entire trellis will be covered!

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The Super Sweet 100s are some of my absolute favorites – they are grape-sized and, true to the name, really sweet.  Great in salads, roasted, made into sauce, and as a snack!  This is the third year that those plants have regenerated and they require very little care, so they’re a great option if you have the space.  We use every bit of our available sunny space, even outside the garden - 

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Gardening can be done easily on a smaller scale too – we are also going to try some vegetables in containers on the deck.

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We’ve got one bell pepper plant, the Early Bell, and a few determinate tomato varieties – determinate means they are bush-style and pretty compact, which makes them ideal for container gardens.  The three we chose for the containers are Bush Goliath, Husky Cherry Red, and Roma. 

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We’ve also got a bunch of the Romas transplanted in the big garden that are set to take over the beds the lettuces currently occupy.  We did Roma plants for the first time last year with great results.  They grow abundantly and produce smallish but very meaty tomatoes that are perfect for sauces and preserving – not much seeds and goo to deal with. 

Should be interesting to see if we get different results in the container versus in the garden, we’ve never done a head-to-head battle before!  I’m eagerly awaiting the results Smile

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