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2016 Garden Thread

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     So nice yesterday afternoon. Mrs. BilletHead raked leaves as I did a little to the beds. Got the baby tiller out and gave it a whirl in the big beds. Threw in some fertilizer and raked the dirt some. Will be tilling this a couple more times before it is time to plant. Soon I will get one side covered so the soil will warm up,

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Lettuce started and looking good,

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Yesterday also got peppers, tomatoes and more lettuce planted in starting pots. If we have half of what we reaped from the garden last season we will be happy,

BilletHead

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You've got a good jump on things! I've got some peppers, shallots, leeks and tomatoes going in cells. Onions in the pre-sprout bags. Won't start lettuce until later this month.

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Miscellaneous stuff in cells, onions and leeks in cups for now.

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Marty -- see those Cubanelles front and center??

I saw somebody on a cooking show ( I think it was America's Test Kitchen or Cook's Country) last weekend using Cubanelles.

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I'm a member/fan of Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah, IA. They preserve heirloom varieties, and also host an exchange through which you can trade/buy seeds with/from other members. I've always liked the Brandywine tomato, and for a few years now I've been reading about a couple different strains of them that are supposed to be really good. So, I found a member in Michigan who had them both and for the princely sum of $4 I've got a few seeds of each. They're Cowlick Brandywine and Glick's Brandywine.

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Cowlick originates from a plant purchased by a guy at a nursery (called Cowlick) in PA. He noticed it performed very well, so he isolated the seeds and grew it for a number of years. It has since made its way to SSE and is offered by a couple members.

Glick's came from a seed company of that name in Lancaster, PA, and in sorta the same story, it stood out and has been preserved as a strain by a couple families for decades. It, too, is now offered on the exchange.

Brandywine tomato originated in southeastern Pennsylvania and has appeared in seed catalogs since the 1880s. And, if this isn't too much info yet Brandywine Creek was the site of an important Revolutionary War battle.

Here's one of a different strain (Sudduth's) I grew in 2010:

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These have really good flavor, but they are a little hard to grow. None of the disease resistance you can get in the hybrids, but the flavor (and maybe the fun of the backstory) means they've always got a spot in the garden.

We now return you to our regular programming.

 

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    Looking good there John!  The tray of Lettuce i posted earlier in this thread has gone bat crap crazy. Tomato tray sprouted well and peppers planted same day as maters just coming up. Got one bed covered and soil is warming nicely. Going to have to get the lettuce in there before it gets any larger. Thanks for the history lesson. We like the brandywines but did not have the best of luck two years in a row. 

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BilletHead

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Glad I found this thread, I am building some planter boxes now for my wife as she has decided to try her hand at this gardening thing.  

I know just the basics from my younger days on a farm, but is there any good reading material that can help us newbies out? She's wanting to mainly grow peppers, squash, zucchini, and maybe a few other items.  Planters will be 8Lx3Wx1D  I'm hoping this is deep enough?

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These last couple weekends have been pretty nice and I've gotten out into the yard to do a little prep work. Pruned off the dead asparagus ferns, and did a little more pruning on the raspberries. Fertilized both those beds too.

Headed over to the vegetable beds and did a little clean up there too. Went to pull up last years parsley and found a hole with a litter of leetle bunnies. I about jumped out of my skin when I saw them squirming around. :D I went ahead and pulled up all the stuff that was sheltering them. Didn't have the heart to wax them, but they're gonna have to find a new place to stay. Hopefully mother nature will take care of the problem for me.

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Growing garden destroyers in your garden huh Ness?  That's a new tactic for sure :)  Thanks for the input BH, wife can hopefully find her green thumb, and we'll see where this goes.  After researching and this thread here we are going to start some of the veggies now, especially the peppers... color me not smart lol, but I never realized it took over 70 days for a pepper to grow... The learning has begun!

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