Grow Your Own, Nevada! Summer 2012: Eating on the Cheap


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  • 3 × 3 × 3 = 27. There are 27 cubic feet in a cubic yard.
  • EggplantEggplant, Black BeautyEggplant are arguably the most beautiful of the vegetable plants. Ever wonder how the eggplant got its name? Because the fruit of the first varieties looked like eggs. White varieties such as 'Cresent Moon' are still available, as are purple, orange and, one of our favorites, the pale green 'Louisiana Long Green'. We once included this whole gambit in a children's garden to illustrate plant hybridization.One of our favorite ways of enjoying eggplant is to prepare slices about 3/4 inch thick (easy with the long slender varieties — just slice in half length-wise), brush with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper (Mrs. Grass is good too) and grill. Even folks who didn't think they liked eggplant have enjoyed this dish. Eggplants are part of the nightshade family along with peppers, potatoes and tomatoes. Companions Likes to be near: BasilCilantroCorianderCosmosChives Dill GarlicGazaniasMarigoldsNasturtiumOnionsParsleyPeppersSpinachDoes not like: Fennel
  • Grow Your Own, Nevada! Summer 2012: Eating on the Cheap

    1. 1. Grow Your Own, Nevada!Vegetable Gardening on the Cheap Wendy Hanson Mazet
    2. 2. People have been gardening and farming inthese valleys for years• Whether you have 4 square feet, 40 square feet, or 40 acres, you can harvest fresh vegetables for your family without overspending!
    3. 3. Why do people grow their own vegetables?Vegetable gardening is a way to have more direct control overwhat your family eats, as well as way to supplement our familyfood budget.• Whether your focus is:• Flavor, freshness, pesticide-free• Save money; learn new skills• Health benefits • Exercise, nutrition• Connection to nature and family traditions• Introduce youth to gardening
    4. 4. What drives you towards certain crops?
    5. 5. Planning is the key to success! Ask yourself… What do I like to eat?
    6. 6. What do I want to grow?• Tomato - productive and popular• Pepper - slow-growing but worth the wait• Eggplant – tasty, nutritious and a beautiful plant• Cucumber - make them climb to save space• Summer squash (zucchini – yellow crookneck) - feed the neighborhood!• Bush bean - plant them twice for rolling harvest• Lettuce - Spinach- grow best March-June and Sept.- Nov.• Leafy greens - mustard, kale, collards, and Swiss chard• Onion – best planted by starts in the spring or bulbs in the fall
    7. 7. Where do I want to grow?How much space do I need?• In-ground• Containers• Edible landscape• Combination of all three??
    8. 8. Space?• Should fit where the conditions are best• Should not be too big or so much work it gets overwhelming• Should have enough space to grow the crops you will use the most!• Start small and expand 1.5 X 16 10 X 10
    9. 9. Front Yard Conversion - The Beauchamp’sBeds8–4x44 – 2 x 104–3x42–3x81 – 1 x 30Total squarefootage = about102 feet on theground Rodale Institute website – Drummondville, Quebec
    10. 10. Limited space create anEdible Landscape
    11. 11. Rosalind Creasy – CA Edible Landscaping • Rosalind Creasy’s 100- • April to September, this Square-Foot Garden little organic garden • 2 tomato plants (‘Better Boy’ and ‘Early Girl) yielded: • 6 bell peppers (2 ‘California Wonder’, 2 ‘Golden Bell’, 1 ‘Orange Bell’, and 1 ‘Big • Tomatoes 77.5 lbs Red Beauty’) • Ripe bell peppers 15.5 lbs • 4 zucchini (2 green ‘Raven’ and 2 ‘Golden Dawn’) – started from seeds • Lettuce 14.3 lbs • 4 sweet basils • 18 lettuce plants (6 ‘Crisp Mint’ romaine, 6 • Basil 2.5 lbs ‘Winter Density’ romaine, and 6 ‘Sylvestra’ butterhead) – interplanted among the • Zucchini 126 lbs tomatoes and peppers
    12. 12. How much do I have to spend? Size and cost• Only buy what you really need; be resourceful, use recycled materials• A 4 ft. X 8 ft. raised bed garden • with 48 sq. ft. of growing space can produce $175-300 of fresh produce • cost about $85 to build (without tools or delivery). • (3 - 2x10x8 Douglas fir, 1 4x4x8 Douglas fir and soil .7 yards of triple mix and 6 cubic feet compost)• A 20 gallon nursery pot – Free – planting soil plus compost around $15
    13. 13. Or Go TraditionalPopular dimensions for a raisedbed gardens:4 by 43 by 34 by 82 by 8
    14. 14. Get Creative
    15. 15. Go Vertical
    16. 16. Stake/supportGrow vining crops up Peppers &to save space (easier topick, too!) tomatoes need support for heavy fruiting
    17. 17. Spacing issuesCorrect spacing for big onions Carrots plants are too tight Don’t crowd! More plants does not improve yield (may reduce quality).
    18. 18. Square FootGardening
    19. 19. Moderately Shallow RootedSoil depths and roots (6 - 24 inch) Deep Rooted (8 - 36 inch) Bean, Bush Artichoke Bean, Pole Asparagus Beet Bean, Lima Carrot Parsnip Chard Pumpkin Cucumber Squash, Winter Eggplant Tomato Muskmelon Watermelon Mustard Pea Pepper Rutabaga Squash, Summer Turnip
    20. 20. Improving the soil with organic matter• Yearly additions of organic matter will improve soil structure and create a reservoir of slow-release nutrients.• Sources: aged manure, compost, shredded leaves, grass clippings, organic mulches, cover crops, buried kitchen scraps,• Each year you should add 1 to 2 in. of compost to increase and maintain crop high yields• Healthy Soils = Healthy Plants
    21. 21. Feed and water• Use garden fertilizers according to label directions. • Naturally based and synthetic fertilizers that are over-applied can burn plant leaves and roots, reduce fruiting, invite insect pests, and pollute waterways.• Keep the root zone of your garden moist. • Preferable to water in early morning• Most vegetables need 1” to 1 1/2” water/week depending on soil type and mulching practices
    22. 22. Mulch to save water and $• Maintain uniform moisture conditions• Decreased water loss from the soil• Reduces erosion from overhead watering• Reduces soil splash• Maintains soil temperatures• With organics it provides natural fertilizes / organics
    23. 23. Know your crops. Have a plan…• Plants that grow from tubers, crowns, or cloves • Potatoes, asparagus, garlic, Jerusalem Artichoke• Plants that grow from big seeds • Peas, beans, corn, squash, melons, cucumbers, pumpkin• Root crops: • Beets, carrots, parsnips, radishes, turnips
    24. 24. Schedule (when to do what!)• January/February: get seed catalogs, plan your garden• March/early April: prepare soil – cultivate, mix in organic matter, start seedlings indoors (You can also do this in Oct. when you put the garden to bed!)• Mid March/April: plant cool-weather crops outdoors• May: plant warm-weather crops outdoors (tomatoes and peppers), with protection, mulch• Late May/June: plant warm-weather crops outdoors, transplants and seed• June/July/August: nurture, water, fertilize, harvest!• Mid – late August: plant cool-weather crops for fall harvest, preserve your vegetables for winter enjoyment• Fall: clean up existing beds, mulch for the winter add compost
    25. 25. Physical Requirements: Temperature• Cool season crops • Develop best <50 F • Tolerate frost. • Quality deteriorates under warm conditions. • Peas, spinach, cole crops• Warm season crops • Develop best at temps >50 F. • Killed by frost. • Beans, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, sweet corn, cucurbits.
    26. 26. Cool-Season Vegetables for Early SpringPlantingVERY HARDY FROST TOLERANTPlant 4-6 weeks before average Plant 2-3 weeks before averagelast frost. last frost.Seed Transplants Seed Transplants•Kale •Asparagus •Beet •Cauliflower•Kohlrabi •Broccoli •Carrot •Chinese•Lettuce, leaf •Brussel •Chard cabbage•Parsley sprouts •Mustard•Pea •Cabbage •Parsnip•Rutabaga •Onion •Radish•Spinach •Parsley•Turnip •Potato, Irish •Rhubarb
    27. 27. Warm-Season Vegetables for Late SpringPlantingTENDER WARM LOVINGPlant on average last spring frost date. Soil temperature should be at least 60 ° FSoil temperature should be at least 55 ° F. and overnight lows consistently over 50 ° F.Seed Transplants Seed Transplants•Bean, snap •Tomato •Cucumber •Eggplant•Cilantro •Melons •Muskmelon •Pepper(Coriander) •Okra•Corn, sweet •Pumpkin•New Zealand •Squash, winterspinach •Watermelon•Squash, summer•Zucchini
    28. 28. Seeds vs. Transplants?• Seeds • Pros: cost-effective, more variety • 1 pack of seeds for $1 to $5 may last 2-5 years (depending on the number of seeds and storage.) • Cons: more work, take longer to produce, need space indoors or protection out doors• Transplants • Pros: less work, ready to plant when you are • Cons: more expensive, origin may be unknown, limited selection of varieties - $1 to $7 per plant • Some mail-order companies will mail transplants
    29. 29. Some vegetables need a head start.Buy transplants or start your own 8 weeksahead of planting time• Spring planted, long season crops: • Peppers, • Eggplants, • Tomatoes, • Melons
    30. 30. Using transplants• ‘Harden off’ before planting outdoors• Transplants fill the space quickly; no need to thin.• When to use transplants: tomato, pepper, eggplant, cabbage, broccoli, woody herbs.
    31. 31. Cool Season Direct Seeding• Peas• Lettuce• Carrots• Cool season crops • Develop best <50 F • Tolerate frost. • Quality deteriorates under warm conditions.
    32. 32. Leaf Crops – Spinach - LettuceCharacteristicsCool Season crop.Start seed outdoors, indoors orbuy plants.Productive beginning in April/MayHarvest(poundage varies on variety)TipsSuccessive plantings are made a couple of weeksapart for a continuous supplyPlant under shade trees
    33. 33. CarrotsCharacteristicsCool Season crop.Start seed outdoorsHarvest(poundage varies on variety area of planting)TipsSuccessive plantings are made a coupleof weeks apart for a continuoussupplyCompanion plant – blend in withother vegetables like tomatoes
    34. 34. PeasCharacteristicsCool Season crop.Start seed outdoorsHarvest(poundage varies on variety area ofplanting)Tips•Plant by mid March•Edible pods or shelling peas•Can be grown in containers –must be at least 12” deep
    35. 35. Bulb OnionsCharacteristicsCool Season crop.Start seed indoors, or use starts,sets or buy plants.HarvestLate summer(poundage varies on variety)TipsUse Intermediate-day or Short-day varietiesPlant shallow – 1” deep and provide 2 to 4”between plantsThe sweeter the onion the shorter the shelflife
    36. 36. More on OnionsShort-Day Onions Intermediate-Day Onions •Start bulbing process when •Start bulbing process when daylength reaches 10-12 hours daylength reaches 12-14 hours •Mature in 75 – 110 days •Mature in 110 days when when planted in northern planted at the proper time states in late spring •Exceptionally sweet •The earlier you plant them, •Red Candy Apple the larger they get •Candy •Texas Sweet •Super Star •Yellow Granex •White Granex
    37. 37. PotatoesCharacteristicsWarm Season cropStart seed indoors or buy plantsHarvest in fall –great for storageHarvest – 2 -5 lbs per plantTipsUse seed potatoesLeave at least 2 good eyes per chunkDon’t forget to hill/moundProtect foliage from hard spring frostsStop watering when leave turn from yellow to brown
    38. 38. HerbsCharacteristicsPerennial and Annual cropsStart seed indoors or buy plantsHarvest in throughout the seasonHarvest – varies per plantTipsFor herbs like Cilantro, plant in cooler areas of the garden – prevent boltingAdd into the landscapes to save vegetable garden spaceChoose types that suit your families needsUse all edible parts of the plant
    39. 39. Warm Season Crops• Most popular • Tomatoes • Eggplant • Squash • Cucumbers • Corn • Herbs• Warm season crops • Develop best at temps >50 F. • Killed by frost.
    40. 40. TomatoesCharacteristicsWarm Season cropStart seed indoors or buy plantsHarvest – 10 – 50 pounds per plantCherry/GrapeMedium (6 to 10 oz.)Large (10oz or more)Tips•Colder climates chose Dtr.varieties•Do not over fertilize•Keep consistently moist. Wideswings in moisture cause crackingof the fruit.
    41. 41. Tomatoes Cont.• Choose indeterminate tomatoes. They keep growing and producing fruit until a killing frost. (Determinate varieties save space but ripen all at once.)• Choose short season heirlooms to save money on seeds in the future
    42. 42. EggplantPerfect in Edible Landscapes – One of the most beautiful Characteristics Warm Season crop. Start seed indoors or buy plants. Fruit development beginning in July Harvest 5 -10 lbs pplant (poundage varies on variety) Tips Pick fruits after develop some color but don’t wait until lose their glossy shine. Keep records – for size, color & shape
    43. 43. BeansCharacteristicsWarm Season cropStart seed outdoorsHarvest in mid summerHarvest – 3 – 10lbs per plantTipsPlants can stretch over 15’ wide depending on varietySuccession Plant and harvest regularly to increase yieldsLook for pole and bushBean flowers are edible
    44. 44. CucumbersCharacteristicsWarm Season cropStart seed indoors or buy plantsHarvest – 2 – 15lbs per plantTipsGo verticalPlants can stretch over 6’ wide depending on varietyConsistent soil moisture
    45. 45. Summer SquashCharacteristicsWarm Season cropStart seed outdoorsHarvest throughout the summerHarvest – 5lbs – well over per plantTipsSome can go vertical others stretch over 10’ wideConsistent soil moistureChoose varieties with that suit your families needsKeep an eye out for for squash bugs
    46. 46. Winter SquashCharacteristicsWarm Season cropStart seed indoors or buy plantsHarvest in fall –great for storageHarvest – 2 – 30lbs per plantTipsGo verticalPlants can stretch over 10’ wide depending on varietyConsistent soil moistureChoose varieties with that suit your families needs
    47. 47. CornCharacteristicsWarm Season crop50/50 Start seed indoors or outdoorsHarvest –Tips• Succession plant• Heavy feeders – rotate crops• Consistent soil moisture• Plant in blocks• Try companion planting
    48. 48. Remember may your garden be Big or Small– you get to reap the rewards!
    49. 49. Getting the Most Food from a Small Area• Plant what you like to eat• Have a budget• Plant cool-season vegetables early and late• Go Vertical - Peas, melons, squash, cucumbers and pole beans.• Get creative - experiment• Visit with friends who vegetable garden – share seeds and tips
    50. 50. Thank you &Happy Gardening