It's growing everywhere...?

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by MWG, Aug 30, 2006.

  1. MWG

    MWG Well-Known Member

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    So I moved from the city out to my farm... Well, I call it my farm... more like I moved out in the country. Anyway, I decided to have a garden.

    So I planted squash and we ate LOTS of squash. I got tired of squash so I let that section of the garden go. Weeds grew up and I hit the entire area with the tiller so I could plant fall turnips.

    I walk out a week later and it looks like a field of grass, except it is squash plants. I have had okra coming up (I didn't plant any okra), various watermelon and other things I didn't plant. The people we bought the house from had a garden last year and I just plowed everything under last Jan.

    I guess my question is...

    What should you do at the end of the growing season? Because I might not have to plant anything next year if the same thing happens. I will have all my veggies sprouting everywhere!

    Thanks,
     
  2. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Well, I guess it depends on how much organization you like, and if you're willing to take a chance on not having the fruit and vegetables you want to have.

    Me, I'd just cover the beds with copious amounts of manure/compost/whatever- you-can-lay-your-hands-on, and start fresh in the Spring. :)

    Pony!
     

  3. MWG

    MWG Well-Known Member

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    Thanks!

    Problem is that it is a pretty big area so I probably can't find that much mulch.

    Would turning it over every week in the winter work? Do the seeds die when they freeze?
     
  4. HeatherDriskill

    HeatherDriskill Well-Known Member

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    What if you had an organized garden in another spot and then left the existing place to see what happens? I think I am too much of an experimenter. I would be curious to see what came up again.
     
  5. IowaLez

    IowaLez Glowing in The Sun Supporter

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    Some people leave a section of their garden space for volunteers. If your garden is that big, why not just till most of it and leave a section alone to see what happens next year? If that's what you want to do. If it's that full of seeds/young plants though you may find you don't get much produce in the end due to crowding and overgrowth.
     
  6. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    i'm one that likes to have volunteers. it's like a nice surprise. :) i bought already started squash this year, and tomatoes came up all around them. i don't know if they got mixed up at the nursery, or if they were in some of the compost. didn't matter- they made some nice, medium sized, tasty tomatoes. i also let a bunch of ground cherries grow up every where in the garden. they are just now ripening. it's fun to show them to the grandkids, and a good lesson about natures' bounty.
     
  7. VALENT

    VALENT Well-Known Member

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    One way to take care of this problem is to retill a few times in the spring when you are about to begin planting. This will only many of the seeds to volunteer-then you till them out. Otherwise you will need to weed them out as you go along. But volunteer plants can be nice- I'm waiting on some cucumbers right now.
     
  8. MWG

    MWG Well-Known Member

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    I don't know what is considered big... I grew some stuff in pots while in college but this is way over my head. I have grass growing everywhere and can't keep up. Attempting to garden while haveing a pregnant wife and a 2 year old combined with working 50 hours a week doesn't really lend itself to having anything that would be printed in a magazine! BUT, I am having fun and we are eating a lot out of the garden and that is what it is all about right?

    Anyway the garden is about 100 X 50. Is that something you guys can keep up with the weeds? I laughed the other day because I had to get out the weedeater to knock most of it down since it was getting tangled up in the tiller. I told my wife that we would probably starve if we had to live off what we grew!!! :)

    How big is your garden?
     
  9. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Whoa! With 50x100, I HIGHLY recommend mulch, or you'll be weeding every day of your life, and putting that 2 year old to work, too!

    What zone are you in? I'm in 5a, and here are some of the things I use for mulch in the garden:

    Grass clippings (get them from the neighbors, too)
    Shredded junk mail (you can pick up a shredder at Menard's for less than $20)
    Hay/corn stalks/leaves gleaned from the curb, neighbors, and Freecycle
    Compost
    Newspaper
    Dryer Lint

    I'm sure there are MANY other ideas. Use your imagination! And it doesn't have to look like House Beautiful to produce GREAT food for your family!

    Right now, I've got 16 raised beds (4x4); a 12x16 section (planted in potatoes, corn, beans, and pumpkins, but will be all potatoes next year); a 3x8 garlic bed; and another 3x8 in which I grew spuds this year, but will convert to garlic this Fall. DH and I are also taking over the rest of the back 1/3 of the lot, so that's another maybe 30x... oh, I guess about 20. Give or take.

    I like to garden. A lot. :)

    Pony!
     
  10. MWG

    MWG Well-Known Member

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    It sounds like you have a nice garden. Why do people use raised beds? So they don't have to bend over as far to pull weeds??? :) I would think that would make it really hard to till and plow with a tractor...

    I forgot to mention that is my first garden. I have some more property up the road that is about 120 X 80. I had planted it in the spring and a hail storm took it out. I went back in the middle of the summer and planted some more corn. I just love fresh corn!

    I thought about newpaper but what about the ink they use? Are there any negative things that all the ink causes?

    I have been putting all the grass clippings and all other compost material in the compost. I had a good one going at the old house and actually moved what little we had to the new house. I am quite proud of my compost pile, the grass clippings (and everything else) is about 5 feet tall. I water it every other day and turn it once a week. I am going to have some great dirt next year! I have been getting old husks from the grocery store too!

    I have a shreader and never thought about using junk mail. I get plenty of it and that would be a great use for it! Again, what about the ink? I also assume not to use the mail with the plastic?

    Zone? No clue. I live near Charlotte, NC. That puts me in the hot and humid zone I guess...
     
  11. HomesteadBaker

    HomesteadBaker Working toward the dream

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    Using junk mail in your compost is ok, most inks now are soy based. Don't use glossy pages, like in magazines, because they have toxic chemicals on them. And you are right.... NO plastic.

    This link should help you learn about the USDA planting zones.

    http://www.usna.usda.gov/Hardzone/ushzmap.html

    Good luck with your garden!!

    Kitty

    P.S. We have many, many "volunteer" plants as well!!!! :)
     
  12. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you have raised beds, you don't have to till. You never walk on the soil, you keep it mulched and it gets better every year, more friable and healthier. Utilizing raised beds concentrates your efforts into focused areas.

    I recommend reading "Square Foot Gardening" by Mel Bartholomay. It should be at your local library. Here's Mel's website:

    http://www.squarefootgardening.com/

    Carla Emery discusses it in her book, "The Encycylopedia of Country Living" as well. If you haven't read Carla's book, RUN to the library and borrow a copy!

    Pony!
     
  13. wvpeach1963

    wvpeach1963 WVPEACH (Paula)

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    I agree with heather. You might have a artichoke patch or Chard and rhubarb you don't want to ruin. Plant elesewhere and wait to see what grows next year.


     
  14. woodspirit

    woodspirit Well-Known Member

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    The inks in newsprint aren't the worst stuff. It's the solvents they use to clean the presses after each ink change. Most of the sprouted seeds will die in the winter or after the first frost. The seeds won't resprout. Any seeds that lie dormant without sprouting during the winter will probably survive.
    Pony when are you going to visit and start my garden. Yours sounds pretty nice. I already ripped mine out for the year because the deer outnumbered the crickets. I had seven deer standing about ten feet from me while I pulled all the plants out. I wasn't in the house before they were in it investigating.
     
  15. Spinner

    Spinner Well-Known Member

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    I use square foot gardening also. I don't till and no plowing with the tractor. It's very easy, in addition to less work, I get more produce in a smaller area. I love it!

    Back when I did do a big garden with long rows, I put down black plastic between the rows to help keep out weeds and make a sort of "sidewalk" between the rows. It was to much work, that's why I switched over to square foot gardening about 15 years ago.

    I feel cheated, I never have volunteer plants... except once when a watermellon vine grew in the front yard (it never made any mellons so it really doesn't count.) I guess I harvest so much there's nothing left to reseed for volunteers to come up???
     
  16. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Start your garden indeed! :rotfl:

    I have enough to do with my little patch. But if you want some help with thinning that herd of deer, I may be persuaded to visit. Where are you? Or at least, what zone are you in?

    I find it hard to believe deer can outnumber crickets, at least not this year. Hokey smokes! My new beds are dancing with those noisy little bugs. I don't know which is worse this year, crickets or cicadas (cicadae?) Either way, they're annoying as all get out! And NEXT year, we're supposed to have the hatch out from the 17 year cicada(s)(e). Yee-haw. Not.

    Pony!
     
  17. woodspirit

    woodspirit Well-Known Member

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    I've counted fifty deer in my back yard before. Not counting all of the ones in the woods on the hillsides looking down at my half acre backyard. This spring my kids set up a "bear trap" to catch one of the blackbears we get in the yard and they took a half gallon of black oil sunflower seeds and put them in a shallow hole in the garden. I forgot about them and rototilled it and planted it and ended up with three perfect rows of sunflowers twenty four feet long each of sunflowers. It was the best thing in the garden. If you want to see twin fawns born in my yard they are on the web page for the Hobby Farm Magazine under the photo gallery title is competition. No pics of the bears, sorry. Anytime you want to shoot deer or turkey while sitting on my deck, you're welcome.
    http://www.hobbyfarmsmagazine.com/hf/
     
  18. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Oh, my! Two fawns, nose-to-nose with chickens!! I never saw the like!

    Very cool, but darn! I would not want to share my garden with that many deer!

    So what are the hunting laws by you? Any limits? Tags to buy?

    We're selling our WI property. We have to pay out the nose to hunt our own land. Hmph! And they limit what you can take, too. Dead deer all over the road, but you pay $160 to shoot one. $60 for a turkey. They even charge you $30 to harvest ginseng on your own property! Stupid state.

    (Yes, I know it's less for residents, but come on -- I pay taxes up there!)

    Pony!
     
  19. Spinner

    Spinner Well-Known Member

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    How can they charge you for harvesting on your own property? I planted ginseng on my property this year. If someone tried to charge me for harvesting it in a few years I think I'd become a moonlight harvester! I sure as heck would be upset if some grits came in and told me I'd have to pay them before I could profit from my work.
     
  20. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The State takes what it wants up there, I swear. And even though we pay property and other taxes, because we don't live there year 'round, they REALLY stick it to us.

    I don't like WI.

    If they could figure it out, they'd probably charge someone like MWG for the volunteer plants coming up!

    Pony!