Seed Swaps

What a difference 12 yards of compost makes.

23 Jun 2012
Sunny 29°C / 85°F

I have been swamped with consulting projects and put my garden on autopilot for 2 weeks. My computerized irrigation worked flawlessly. Fortunately no computer crashes. The weeds didn’t take over, even though I never got my weedcloth finished in the walkways. I gave my daughter a lesson on pinching off suckers on the tomato plants and only one got away from her.

Photo 1 – Bed 1: Greens & Basil raised bed
Photo 2 – Bed 2: 90 Pepper plants, Bed 3: Beans & Beets, Bed 4: Onions & Zuchs
Photo 3 & 4 – 38 Tomato Plants pruned to a single vine inside a hoophouse
Photo 5 – Black Gold

Tomorrow I get back to putting down weedcloth.




Everything looks so good. I must have missed something along the way … why are the tomato plants under cover?

Posted on 24 Jun 12 (almost 4 years ago)

I have been plagued with Septoria Leafspot the last two years and lose my tomato plants by early August. It is spread by rain drops bouncing off the ground spreading the spores to leaves. I’m using soakers and avoiding rain. I built a 10′ × 40′ hoophouse and have a 40’ raised bed inside. I’m also trying a new approach of pruning suckers and supporting single vines from the roof beams. I always used cages and steel stakes, and I noticed last year that the leaves that contact the galvanized cages turned brown and died, looking very similar to blight. So this is one big experiment.

Posted on 24 Jun 12 (almost 4 years ago)

Thanks hotwired. I’ll keep that in mind … my tomatoes have been hit with the leafspot, too, for the last couple of years.

Posted on 24 Jun 12 (almost 4 years ago)

Now that is a production garden!
Everything looks wonderful! Except for, ahem the flat tire! :)

I am really pleased with the compost too. I managed to get a few yards to use!

Posted on 25 Jun 12 (almost 4 years ago)

That’s some nice black compost there – looks like some good stuff.

Posted on 27 Jun 12 (almost 4 years ago)

Very well organized. I have my drip system on a timer. What software do you use to run your drip system?

Posted on 30 Jun 12 (almost 4 years ago)

Looks most excellent!! Who knew computers could take care of plants so well?!! ;-P

Posted on 30 Jun 12 (almost 4 years ago)

Cherokee… I’m using sprinkler valves, now buried under 4" of new compost, and two Advantech 1762 I/O cards totalling 32 I/O’s. There are 16 separate irrigation zones, each with home-built moisture sensors. I have two liquid fertilizer tanks with electric flow-valves with different mixes of NPK, so that I can feed individual zones based on the crop and stage of development. There’s nothing more dangerous than an retired engineer with a garden.

Posted on 30 Jun 12 (almost 4 years ago)

I really like the concept of using Pvc vs. the standard rubber tubing. Do you just poke holes in the PVC or is there something sticking out of it. Hard to tell from the picture.

Also, where is the computer located with the Advantech cards installed, indoors / outdoors?

Posted on 01 Jul 12 (almost 4 years ago)

Most are designed as soakers with 0.020" to 0.050" diameter holes at 6-12" apart. The size and spacing of holes is determined by calculating flow volume and pressure at various points within the zone. The dimensions vary in order to have a balanced flow at each point within the zone. I setup tomatoes and peppers with deep soaker tubes that encourage deep rooting, since both tend to develop surface roots. I have my computer with a touchscreen in the garden shed adjoining my greenhouse. It also controls heat, ventilation, lighting, and watering in the greenhouse.

Posted on 01 Jul 12 (almost 4 years ago)

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