Archive for February, 2011

Tomatoes, Basil, Lettuce, Pineapple Sage transplanted.

February 22, 2011 Leave a comment


Tomatoes have been exposed to outdoors for about a week now. They are slightly stressed but they look like they are handling it ok. extended forecast into March looks good. Worst temps being 70/46, some slight rain. So last night and tonight I put the tomato plants in the ground.

These are 6 Heirloom tomatoes

  • 2 Chocolate Strips
  • 2 Sun Gold
  • 1 Riesentraube
  • 1 Royal Hillbilly

Other stuff going on

  • I realized I over planted a Garlic zone with Beets. Sprouts on top of garlic shoots. going to lose the beats because I can’t dig up the garlic without losing the beats, so the deeper planting wins.
  • Fertilized Fruiting Trees with Happy Frog Fruit and Flower mix 5-8-4
  • Put transplants in garden – Cabbage Basil, Pineapple Sage, and a Delicata Squash straight from the seedling tray with first true leaves, no hardening on that delicata hopefully it does ok.
  • I now see Fingerling Potato shoots reaching the surface. No Red La Soda shoots yet.
  • Lettuce, Carrots seedlings are up. Need to sow maybe carrot 2 seeds per spot next time, I sowed to many seeds and have to trim out the excess.
  • Bean are hitting the surface about a week later.
  • Earliglow June bearing variety strawberries have now set some flowers.

New Fig Tree Cuttings arrived – Violette De Bordeaux

February 20, 2011 3 comments

My fig cuttings have arrived from Encanto Farms in NJ. I ordered my fig cuttings from probably the most famous fig grower in the fig world. He collectively sells over 300 varieties of Figs, and only once a year sells cuttings, and sells out every time. Figs can be grown “easily” by taking cuttings from a parent plant, and kept moist for 2-3 weeks, and they will sprout roots and then grow into a new plant.   I’ve got 4 cuttings of a Violette De Bordeaux Fig, that I will try to turn into some fig trees.

I tried a wet paper towel in plastic bag method last time and it didn’t work, the cuttings molded and rotted. This time I will try a Peat Moss Perlite Mix to keep the bottom moist and in somewhat soil material.

Check out my new Page above on my current Fig Trees –

Fig Cuttings Source -

Violette De Bordeaux Fig – “Black fig with dark red flesh and rich flavor.”


My VDB Cuttings arrived

VdB fig Example

Categories: Figs, Fruit Trees Tags:

Tomatoes are fussy little plants

February 17, 2011 1 comment

I started Monday on hardening all my plants. This is the process of moving them out of their nice controlled temperature inside, and under the nice happy LED grow light, to the big bright sun, the wind, and the colder weather. Most did fine, and are coping well. But the Tomatoes have been stressing. Their stems turn purple and their leaves curl up. The internet is full of ideas on how and how long to harden them off. Some people say a few days some people claim it can take 2 weeks. I’m going to go close to a week based on what I’m seeing. I’m guessing by this weekend they may have been “exposed” to the new weather enough to plant.

They’ve been out full days, and this is the first night out, they are sheltered by the house radiant heat – a few degrees warmer and less wind. I had them inside most of yesterday to recover from the previous day. They look less stressed than they did yesterday, so I think this is going well. Hopefully I will line up for a weekend planting of tomatoes if our cats don’t eat the plants.

Tomato Plants on back porch

Tomato Plants on back porch, and "grey one". Don't eat my plants overnight please.

Here’s the blue/purple discoloration.

Tomato Transplant Stress

Categories: Garden, Uncategorized Tags: ,

Transplants are in ground (except tomatoes)

February 16, 2011 Leave a comment

Lots of transplants today, hopefully the extended forcecast of warm weather is right. High of 70 and low of high 40s and a few nights of low 50s. The average last frost is before Feb 23rd for our area.  Hopefully no more frost or I will have to get really creative. I put up some old bed sheets as a wind block to help lessen the shock.

Worst case they all die because it’s not warm enough. I have some “backup” plants started at the same time just in case.  The tomatoes were looking too shocked to put in just yet. Maybe in a day or two.

eggplant listada de gandia
Bell peppers Purple Beauty
Lemon squash
zucchini striata d’italia
Muskmelon Edisto 47
Cucumber Beit Alpha
Delicatta Squash




Yesterday I direct sowed Dragon Tongue beans, Purple Podded Pole Beans, and Chires Baby Corn.

Categories: Garden

Plants growing where they shouldn’t be.

February 15, 2011 Leave a comment

My last post got me thinking. I have a theme to share – things growing where they shouldn’t be.

Watermelon over the septic tank?

In pulling my last seedlings this year, and cleaning out the seedling tray spots, I had to dispose of some perfectly good seedlings… so I carelessly stuck it in the grown above the septic tank which had been recently dug up  and pumped. No, I don’t expect it live, but it’s easier to see it struggle and die than to just throw it into the yard. I’m curious how long it will live… it’s been 2 days now and it looks unphased. Even more scary… what if it does produce watermelons?


Bluecrop Blueberry bush – growing, but not producing. We got maybe 5 blueberries last year. It’s from Sam’s Club, they sold a pretty box of raspberries, blackberry and blueberry plants. Researching this plant, and why it won’t give me blueberries I was really shocked with what I found. The variety of blueberries is a Northern variety, needs a certain amount of chill hours to be fruitful – 850-1000 chill hours (hours where temp between 30-45 degrees). Daphne,AL (where it was sold) gets around 650 hours per the Alabama County Extension Service reference maps. This is a great variety all the way up to the far North US, but not down here. I was young and didn’t know any better, and didn’t have a garden, just experimented with a tomato plant. I’ve been keeping and caring for the plant for 3-4 years, and decided to look it up just recently. It’s going in the composting wood pile.


Blueberry BlueCrop

Celery in the Compost Pile

I thought the celery was done, but it’s actually growing new celery stalks! I have no idea what will happen. I don’t really plan to keep them in there, I turn the compost pile regularly with a shovel, and don’t have room in the garden for this. I’ve caught spent onions with just a tiny bit of the base left growing roots in there too.


Squash plants grow rapidly, even through paper towels.

I left them germinating in a plastic bag with a moist paper towel and forgot about them for 24 hours.

Delicatta Squash growing in paper towel

Categories: Garden

Drip Irrigation install, and fertilizing

February 13, 2011 Leave a comment

So funny thing, I was applying fertilizer – muriate of Potash – a mined mineral rock, and as I’m pouring… a yellow corn kernel lands in my container. What is a plain unprocessed yellow CORN doing in my mineral fertilizer? They have finally put Corn into everything.

Corn in Muriate of Potash

Transplanted Watermelons, a Musk Melon, and a Cucumber from seedling tray to bigger pots.

Sowed remaining 2 sq ft with mesculin lettuce seeds.

Installed Drip Irrigation system from Irrigation direct in both beds.

Put up PVC frame for netting support around new raised bed, and put up wildlife netting to protect from creatures.

Based on results of soil tests applied some fertilizers to the 72 sq ft of vegetable garden space.

Spread out 1.8 lbs Blood Meal 12-0-0 to provide nitrogen.

Raised Beds with frame and irrigation

Spread out 1.25 lbs Muriate of Potash 0-0-60 to correct Potassium deficiency.

Spread remaining 3-4 lbs of Acidifier onto garden soil and blueberry bushes to lower PH.

Spread roughly 5 lbs of Greensand (0-0-0.1) – provides Potassium over long term and trace elements.

Also – Update on the store bought squash seed project – Delicata Squash virtually all germinated, just took time. Ended up with excellent germination. Here’s an interesting shot of one I forgot to check for 24 hours and it shot through the moist paper towel I had it surrounded with.

Delicatta Squash growing in paper towel

Grow Area 2-12-2011

Categories: Garden Tags: ,

Delicata Squash sprouts

February 9, 2011 Leave a comment

Exerpiment worked. I have 3 maybe 4 Delicata Squash seedlings sprouted from a store bought squash. Germination rate not good but it’s more than I need!

Categories: Uncategorized