SQWIBS Urban Garden Adventure

Discussion in 'Small Spaces' started by sqwib, May 28, 2015.

  1. jaxrmrjmr

    jaxrmrjmr Smoking Fanatic

    You have a lot going on!
  2. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Finished Raised bed #2

    Earlier in the week I picked up some 2x10's, 2x4's and hardware for the raised bed and dug out around the old raised bed, I got home late and only had about a half an hour of light so I didn't get much done. I was actually pretty impressed with the soil. Since the weather forecast is for snow until Saturday sometime, I left work an hour earlier today to try and knock out this Raised bed, I figured the extra hour would be just enough time to knock out one of the raised beds. The weather complied, it wasn't too cold if I kept moving.

    • I dug out the area a bit more and removed the wood, I'd be lying if I said for sure but I'm guessing that this raised bed has been in there over 15 years, you can see how weathered the wood is that's behind the shovel. What happens is it rots out where the screws are but the wood is usually still in fairly good shape, if left undisturbed. Anyhow I figured this is my last time doing this... they're gonna bury me in this bed... so I opted for additional hardware. Then the wood was all cut and placed on the hill.






    • I am glad I knocked this out yesterday, its gonna be a mess with all the snow we have coming.


    It's not done yet, there's a few more tweaks (decorative with function) that this bed will get, I am working on copper corners that I will cut from 3" pipe, anneal and peen , then the cap will be trimmed with Copper tape to keep slugs out and finally it will be stained in the fall after it has weathered a bit.

    I'm still toying with the idea of trimming in led lights,

    Anyhow, I will be making another smaller one (8') right next to it, hopefully this season, if I have the funds and the time.

    My Ozark Beauty strawberries came today , I'm a bit worried putting them in the towers with the cold weather were having but I'm going for it anyway.
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2016
  3. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    My Heirlooms seem to be doing good.

  4. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I know nothing about Arkansas beauties but we always plant our strawberries in the fall, we usually get just a couple a berries before the first freeze which you cover your berries for. Then in the spring the berries start back up. Oh and FYI, here most of the strawberries now are Cayanosa. They travel well, much tuffer berries. But the best tasting berries, most juicy and sweet are Chandlers.

    Since I was too young to run away from home we did 3 to 5K plants a year. That required picking twice a day to hopefully keep up. Then Pop would load up the truck and go give 'em to friends. LOL   Gwad I hated strawberries.....ROFLMAO.
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2016
  5. jaxrmrjmr

    jaxrmrjmr Smoking Fanatic

    I was thinking about OSB because of the cost - much cheaper than an 8" or 10" solid piece.  It has held up in the bottom of my Kratky boxes, so I think it will work.

    Not sure what you mean by "lined".  Some of the pots have holes near the bottom of the sides that are about 3/4" so I figure they were drain holes.  I might stick a layer of weed fabric in the bottom to cover these holes.

    I will look up what Larry Hall uses, but I have been using a mix of roughly 2:1 of peat moss and perilite.  I am going to try the 3:2:1 (just like ribs!) in a few buckets this year.  That being 3 parts peat, 2 parts pine bark fines, and 1 part perilte.

    So, you are looking at 4 different systems this year?
  6. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I thought you were going with wicking pots... They sit in a shallow reservoir regulated by a float valve. The mix is 2 5 gallon buckets of peat 1 5 gallon bucket of composted manure a coffee can of perlite, handful of Epsom salts and a cup and a half of garden lime
    I'll hopefully get mine setup this weekend and take some pics.
    1) Air pruning (wicking Grow bags)
    2) NFT strawberries and herbs
    3) Recirculating Deep Water Culture, mater's, peppers, eggplants etc.
    4) vertical towers, strawberries, herbs, peppers.
    5) Traditional Dirt Farming in ground and raised beds
    6) Hybrid Aquaponics
    7) container gardening.
    Sounds like a whole lot but it really isn't.
  7. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    wow.... I'm gonna check out those Chandlers.
    I could almost live off of strawberries
  8. jaxrmrjmr

    jaxrmrjmr Smoking Fanatic

    Looks like Larry's mix is about 60% peat where what I have been using is 66% peat, which is the key component to allow the water to actually "wick" the water up.  The pine bark is supposed to hold water and the shape helps provide air space.  Perilite is just for drainage.  Much of what I have read is from people that use the SWC Earth Boxes, so I thought it was the same concept.  Most of them say that compost makes the soil too wet and heavy.  I haven't tried it, so I can't really speak to it.

    That still looks like quite a bit, but the beauty of most of those systems is that the maintenance is less. once you get it going.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2016
  9. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Bed #3 done and got the tiller out.

  10. jaxrmrjmr

    jaxrmrjmr Smoking Fanatic

    Reminds me of when my great dane dug up my entire garden the day after I planted it about 5 years ago!

    You still have snow? Golly..... over 80 degrees here today. [​IMG]

    Found a version of the Datil pepper that is supposedly sweet but still has the unique flavor.

    Chablis sweet pepper - I top pretty much all of my pepper plants which forces them to develop multiple branches.  Instead of this growing an inch or two more and then splitting into two branches - I now have caused 7-8 branches to develop.

    Purple bell pepper - topped again and 8 branches have started.

    Over wintered Ghost pepper starting to bud out again.

    Brandywine tomato flower buds already! - I bought a few tomato plants when I thought I had burned up my seedlings.  There are a total of four flower bud sets on this plant so far - two can be seen here.

    Here's the third....

    ....and the fourth!

    Blaze orange bell pepper already blooming!

    Standard bell pepper budding out after being over wintered.

    Last edited: Mar 14, 2016
  11. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Dam dogs!!!

    No snow just that one day, been around 65-70. Took a chance and planted a BrandyWine Red and a Matts outside with a few cloches.

    (let me know if my posts load slowly, the pics are hosted flickr and copy/pasted from my website, its much easier that way but I don't want to tie up bandwith)


  12. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Raised beds are done, just need to hook up the irrigation.

  13. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Air pruning system setup, just need to add grow medium and some plants. This will be stored away each year.

    • This Cedar planking is the cover for the Koi Pond Veggie Filter, the veggie filter is shut down in the winter and this piece covers the top.


  14. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    NFT Rail is up and running in Recirculating Deep Water culture mode, once the roots reach near the bottom of the rails the stand-off is flipped and water level dropped. I decided to plant all My Strawbwerries "Ozark Beauties" in this system.
    • NFT Position with 3/4" reservoir

  15. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Potting Up.


    • Wow what a chore, I wont be making that mistake again, next year... right into the Solo Cups. The smell of the tomato plants and basil were driving me crazy especially after having lunch at Panera and having a turkey sandwich with a slice of what they think is a freaking tomato, it was so pithy/mushy,  I cant even explain it...it was just plain nasty.
  16. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Patio done.

    • The planter that was on the side of the house was moved to this spot, Although still 4 weeks till the last frost, I planted a Matt's Wild Cherry Tomato plant in this planter using a Cloche. The planter in the back will get some Leeks. Transplanted a bunch of Phlox to the (L) side.

  17. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Planted the Raspberries, now I'm just waiting for my Everbearing Strawberries and Jersey Knight Asparagus. I'm getting there little by little.
  18. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Wow! You're like Pop, he used to grow those milk jugs too. I never saw one bloom though.
  19. Dang Buddy, you've got things going on. I'm waiting on my garden to to dry up a bit after over 7 inches of rain.

    Last edited: Mar 15, 2016
  20. jaxrmrjmr

    jaxrmrjmr Smoking Fanatic

    I don't see how you do it.  Many different builds and setups there.  A lot to even think about because each system is different.

    I spent last weekend cleaning out water buckets.  The algae was thick since light was getting through the buckets and I used fish emulsion without thinking of what it would grow.  The buckets are now wrapped in aluminum foil.  It serves two purposes - 1 to keep the light out, 2 to save the buckets from breaking down from the sun's rays.  Dollar store aluminum foil covers about 5-6 bucket setups. 

    Here's what I worked on after work today.  Another self watering and self wicking container but a different concept......

    A 27 gallon tote like the one I saw in one of your pics

    Drill a 7/8" hole at each end for the water supply pipe to enter and exit....

    Fit it with 5/8" grommet....

    Sections of perf pipe with the ends covered with weed fabric and zip tied to keep the grow medium out...

    Three sections fit just right in the bottom of those totes and it leaves just a little space for the peat to work down around them so that it wicks water upward...

    Stick a knife through the rubber grommet and poke a hole in the weed fabric and daisy chain your water pipe from container to container...

    Let it fill up. 

    I then took a mix of 3 parts peat moss, 2 parts pine bark fines, and 1 part perilite and filled it up - compacting it somewhat like you would do when re-potting plants.  This is my first time using this exact mix but it felt right when I stuck my hands in it.

    Rich, I didn't notice any delay in loading your pics to this thread., but thanks for letting me ride the coat tails of your thread.
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2016

Share This Page