Thursday, January 31, 2013

Big Plans at PAR Davies!

Below is a bed layout for our spring and summer crops. This is just suggested placement keeping in mind crop rotation and companion planting as best I could. Email me with any changes, suggestions, etc. Just about anything can be changed, except the tomatoes have to stay where they are. To give the tomatoes ventilation, I've planted a low crop next to a row of tomatoes. Tomatoes will be approximately 10 plants per bed with a single row and one at each end. I've left some blank spaces for last minute additions, changes, etc. The idea is to try to plant more than one crop per bed to help deter disease and insects.


Seed packet organization:  small photo album - remove the
hard cover or the album won't close!

Unusual Plants: I was at the seed swap this weekend and got some Asian bean seeds (up to 3 ft. long beans) and Scarlet Runner bean (see links below). Even if you didn't eat these beans, they are really cool to look at. The youtube segment on the runner bean will tell you waaay more than you ever wanted to know about runner beans. I thought we could do one tepee of each bean, unless someone has a better idea.

Kay is starting an Italian Tree Tomato for us. It is supposed to get up to 15 ft. tall!! That would be taller than 2 tomato cages stacked! So we will have some interesting specimens to be sure.


With the summer crops I am especially concerned about the cucurbits, since last summer the cucumber beetle did a number on our cukes. We are planning on using insect row covers for the squash, but I don't know what to do about the cukes (and cantaloupe if we decide to try again), as those darned bugs will probably be back. I'm not sure if a periodic spray of Neem would prevent the cucumber beetles….does anyone know? I've also been reading about Kaolin Clay (Surround WP is the brand name). Has anyone heard of this? It says 'organic' but in one place cautioned to use something to cover nose/mouth and leave the area after spraying. Anyone got a gas mask? It is supposed to be just clay, but you wouldn't want to get it in your lungs. The 'Surround' also repels japanese beetles, which we had an infestation of last year. I think trying a row cover on unruly cukes or cantaloupe would be near impossible, especially if they are climbing on a fence. Help! Thoughts on this anyone???? 

FYI…..Below is a link about row covers--for cold protection and for insect protection. Scroll down to the video 'Row Covers for Protecting Plants' and watch some good information on how to use the insect row covers. This is what we will need to do with the squash. I am wondering if we will need wire supports or if it will be light enough to 'float.' Our winter cover is Agribon AG-50, and we will use the Agribon AG-15 for the insect cover.

If you are interested in getting the Agribon row cover for your home garden, the link below is so far the least expensive site I could find….I guess 'cause it's the factory. I hate it that a lot of the types go from 50' to 500' lengths with no in between.

Hope you have a nice week.
Til later,

"In gardens beauty is a by-product. The main business is sex and death."  --Sam Llewelyn

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