What Did You Do In The Garden?

Marie2020

Garden Ornament
Joined
May 21, 2020
Messages
396
Reaction score
455
Points
95
pile the compost as high as possible, also bark chunks, leaves, anything organic and rotted will help.

clay might be somewhat acidic.

what i would so is mix what you have as best you can just to get the plant above grade so it will drain ok. after next season you can lift it up and add more organic material and more acidifiers like sulphur (but mix that with the soil/compost you are adding and let it perk for a while before setting a plant with it).

in FL which has notoriously horrible pH for blueberries they grow the plants on/in piles of bark chips and pine straw. pretty much any organic material is going to be an improvement over subsoil that has a higher pH.
Thank you for this, I only have wood chipping that I use for my chicks, but will go hunting for pine tomorrow when my dog has his walk. :)
 

ninnymary

Garden Master
Joined
Dec 7, 2009
Messages
11,942
Reaction score
10,389
Points
417
Location
San Francisco East Bay
@Marie2020 , the compost itself may help to raise acidity or, at least, to neutralize the soil if used in sufficient amounts.

This may help:


Steve
Never knew that! Thanks Steve,

Mary
 

Zeedman

Garden Addicted
Joined
Dec 11, 2016
Messages
1,120
Reaction score
2,240
Points
227
Location
East-central Wisconsin
I REALLY need advice about corn. Yes, I have been getting something of an edible harvest, but I am SO disappointed with the seed. I saved dried out corn from last year, and I will try to wrestle the kernels loose and save for 2021.
If you recall, in 2019 I planted 2018 seeds and got a marvelous harvest. I had bought these pink coated seeds from a local FS, that no longer sells to the small backyard gardener, just mass quantities to farmers.
I need advice as to what to plant next year, and since you had a big harvest, I am starting with You, @Zeedman !
Chances are the saved seed will under-perform. Most commercially-sold sweet corn is hybrid, in which case the crop from saved seed will revert to a mixture of the parents, and various combinations of their genetics. Even if the corn seed being saved is OP, it may under-perform, unless it was part of a large population. Not to mention the possibility of crosses with any other corn - sweet, field, or decorative - grown within the wind dispersal area (which could be 1/4 mile or more).

Sweet corn is one of the few vegetables I don't save seed for, because of the difficulty of the process, and because I like some of the hybrids. The rural garden has farm fields on two sides - and the nearest one was planted in field corn this year. That not only would make it hard to save pure seed, it restricts the type of sweet corn I can grow reliably. Unlike other vegetables, sweet corn flavor is affected this year if cross-pollinated with a different type. Of the different types of sweet corn (Su, Se, Sh2 and Synergistic) the Se types are least affected - so those are the ones I grow. IMO they also have the best combination of sweet flavor, a long harvest window, and good frozen quality. "Miracle" has been one of my favorites for years, with huge yellow ears, good husk cover, and short stalks... but it seems to be vanishing from the trade, so I ordered a pound this year. If frozen in small air-tight packets, it should last me 6-7 years.

If you have had success before, you undoubtedly know that the best results occur when sweet corn is planted in blocks. Long narrow rows often result in poor pollination. Specific planting strategies differ, but I use "hills" of 6-8 seeds to help the seedlings break through the soil surface (I have silt clay) then thin to the strongest 4. The hills are spaced 30-36" apart; I generally use 36" from N to S, and 30" from E to W. I use blocks of hills no less than 4 X 4... and used 6 X 6 & 7 X 8 this year. That spacing allows me to run the tiller between rows.

The advantage I see in using hills of 4 plants is increased pollination & better tip fill, especially for plants on the edge of the patch. The 4 plants tend to pollinate each other. For best germination, don't plant too early - I plant sweet corn at the same time I plant beans. Super sweet (Sh2) corns need warmer soil than Se types, so would need to be planted a little later.

To reduce ear worm damage, I spray Bt caterpillar killer onto the silks, with enough pressure to get inside the tip. Weather permitting, I may do this twice, 7-10 days apart. If the spray is able to penetrate, almost every ear will be undamaged - which is important if you are freezing corn on the cob, or giving corn away to friends. Choosing varieties with tight tip coverage is helpful too, another one of the traits I like about "Miracle". The other variety this year (an early yellow & white whose name I lost) had loose tip coverage... which led to some damage from birds.
 

Zeedman

Garden Addicted
Joined
Dec 11, 2016
Messages
1,120
Reaction score
2,240
Points
227
Location
East-central Wisconsin
if the pods are turning yellow you can pick them and finish drying them inside. i do a lot of this kind of harvesting here. just have to keep an eye on the trays. i stir or turn things once in a while to make sure there is no fungus starting up. every week or so i'll pick out the dried pods and combine the ones still green so i can get some space back in my room here. have to keep room for incoming beans...
My rule of thumb is to squeeze the pod just below where it attaches to the stem... if it is rubbery or leathery, I pick it. The seed from those pods, once dry, will be completely normal. If that area on the pod is still firm, then the pod will usually be able to survive rainfall within 24 hours with minimal damage, provided it is elevated enough for moisture to drain. I chose to take that gamble, I'll know the results next week, when I expect the pods to begin drying.
 

Marie2020

Garden Ornament
Joined
May 21, 2020
Messages
396
Reaction score
455
Points
95
@flowerbug my wood chips were dry, but added them anyways. I mixed it in with compost then watered with a mild mix of apple cider water. It's coming to life already :)
 

Marie2020

Garden Ornament
Joined
May 21, 2020
Messages
396
Reaction score
455
Points
95
@all. Would anyone have any guidance for me please. I have a ginger root that has a few sprouting on it, I've read hops should be used but don't have any. I managed to get ginger growing several years ago in a pot but had to leave it behind. I tried last year and failed. I have compost, worming feed and cactus soil & a little worming soil plus I've a bit of sand as well.
Excuse my crappy writing I'm not deleting these mistakes.
 
Top