Sunday, June 7, 2009

Rebounding from the Cold Temperatures

The temperatures have been much warmer in the last few days. The tomatoes and peppers seem to be recovering from the chilly nights. Some of the peppers in both the SFG and traditional garden lost their lower leaves, but there is new growth in all but one. I think I may lose this one as it seems to have been touched by by the cold:

There is one more spot in the traditional garden reserved for the one plant that I grew from seed. It is a Jalapeño Pepper and was grown with just window lighting. It looks much different from the greenhouse Early Jalapeño transplants. I’ve been hardening it off for the past several weeks. I think it is ready to be planted. I hope it does well:

Lettuce is doing really well. I reseeded a few areas where the first round of seeds failed to sprout:

The spinach that sprouted last week has developed more leaves. Most of the seeds didn't germinate so I reseeded spots where spinach failed to sprout the first time around.

I was planting a few marigolds here and there in the SFG yesterday and was alarmed at the dryness of the soil. I was watering the transplants daily by hand with sun-warmed water as Mel suggests in his book, The All New Square Foot Gardening. It was obvious as I dug into the soil that it wasn’t enough. So I carefully wove a soaker hose through the three SFGs and gave them a good and deep watering until the bottom edges of the SFG boxes showed some dampness. The plants in the SFG look much better today. I will keep my eye on this from now on.

The nylon trellis I ordered arrived during the week, and I added it to the two SFG. Perfect timing too as the Super Sarnos Tomatoes seemed to be ready to weave themselves in the trellis without my help.

Today I noticed some of the Tendergold and Royal Burgundy Bush Beans that were planted last Saturday are just beginning to sprout. Still waiting for signs of the Blue Lake Bush Beans.

Another thing I did notice among the bush bean rows is the emergence of grass. I removed the plastic mulch from this area as I couldn’t figure out how to anchor it securely enough to not pull out the young bush bean seedlings. I guess I am going to have to figure out something soon before grass takes over this part of the garden.

This weekend, I also put together the second self watering container (SWC) and planted the final two Window Box Roma tomatoes. It seemed much easier to construct this time around.

I replaced the Yellow Doll Watermelon savaged by cutworm with Crimson Sweet Watermelon transplants. I found three plants in one container and they all look healthy, so I planted all three in the Yellow Doll’s spot in the center of the garden. It should be planed one foot apart, but I the roots were intertwined and overgrown in the container and I wasn’t able to separate them easily. Crimson Sweet has a maturity of 80 days and their fruit averages 20 pounds. There is a lot of room for the vines to spread, so hopefully they will be ok. We shall see.

Not much growth on the Yellow Doll Watermelons or the Fast Break Melons this week…probably due to the cool temperatures. But they seem to be holding their own for now.


  1. If you pick those weeds before they get out of control, it should clear up in a few weeks. We all have some kind of weed in our sfg, you just have to remove them when they are small....Yeah...the sfg must be watered pretty frequently - at least every 2 days.

  2. EG: Thanks for the comment. I probably should have clarified, the weeds are growing in the traditional garden, not the SFG. Last year, the grass and weeds took over this garden and it was a mess. This is what encouraged me to try SFGing this year.

  3. Your sfg's look nice. Even though you are more north than I am it looks like you have some bigger stuff growing. I missed some good timing oportunities and had to start a few things cats ate seedlings! All but the basil! Those pics you showed sure look like blackberries, but I can't be too positive. We had a bunch when we moved in but we gave them away, we don't like black berries but I love raspberries!

  4. Welcome Shawn Ann! I planted transplants for the tomatoes, peppers, and melons. I probably planted them out too early as the weather turned cold on us soon after. It was rough for them for a while, but we have had a run of warmer weather the past few days and I have seen a great improvement.