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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 2:26 am 
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Location: upstate NY zone 6B Location Details
Aside from bamboo seeds, what kind of seeds sound good to grow for the upcoming spring?

I already have vegetable seeds for onions, radishes, daikon, beets, carrots, chinese yam, garlic. Maybe I'll try some peanuts. Other seeds I'm starting up are gunneras, zebra grass, & blueberries. I'm thinking about lily, sugar cane, papyrus, pitcher plants, palms, cycads, zinnias, asparagus, or some other perennial that grows fairly impressive.

Keeping seed-racks in the greenhouse should be safe in another month.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 11:29 am 
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Location: Eustis, Fl zone 9a/b right between too cold & not cold enough Location Details
tomato, peppers, basil, potatoes, collard greens,sweet potato, summer squash, eggplant

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 4:56 pm 
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Location: Zone 5b/6a Bloomington, INElevation: 770-790 feet Location Details
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I have seeds for Castor Bean, Datura inoxia, Blackberry Lilly, Garlic Chives, Yellow Lillies, Yucca, Variegated Chilli Peppers, Luffa, Heirloom Watermelon, Scarlet Runner Bean and some others. Do any of these interest you?

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2010 2:31 am 
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I might consider getting a variety of seedless watermelon, or anything else that can produce very well with little or no effort. I don't really like to spend any more time gardening other than the initial planting, fertilizing and setting up the sprinklers.

Maybe I should get some sweet potatoes. I've read somewhere that they can keep producing more tubers if you keep piling soil onto the them. I've seen peanuts grown before, but have no idea how productive they are.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2010 2:53 pm 
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I have occasionally found peanuts while digging in the yard. I have no idea what plant/weed produced them.

Admittedly most of my gardening time last year got taken up by dealing with house wiring and other emergencies.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 1:10 am 
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Location: SW NORTH CAROLINA Zone 7
foxd wrote:
I have occasionally found peanuts while digging in the yard. I have no idea what plant/weed produced them.

Admittedly most of my gardening time last year got taken up by dealing with house wiring and other emergencies.


I was just wondering how humble a plant the peanut had to be that you could find them in your yard and not know from what they had been growing....

so, I went to Wiki and learned that peanuts are also known as "monkey nuts", "pygmy nuts", and "pig nuts". Somehow a handful of "monkey nuts" or "pig nuts" just doesn't seem that appealing to me. Is it just me?

Also, I learned that there are running and bunching varieties of monkey nuts.

WoowwWWeeeee! This has been really educational.

Sorry. Back to topic...


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 5:31 am 
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Location: upstate NY zone 6B Location Details
Here's my first garden plant that I'm starting as I planted tomato seeds 1 week ago. It's called the Health Kick F1 tomato which is supposed to have a higher percentage of anti-oxidents, but the main thing I like about it is its medium to small size along with dark red tomatoes which likely ripen with ease.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/TOMATO-HEALTH-K ... 5d3c96d306

Here's the picture of them with a zip lock bag covering to prevent fungus gnats from going on an egg laying spree in there. The one thing I do find is that these tomato seedlings are emerging exceptionally large in size compared to any other species that I have ever germinated. I'm not sure if that means better production, but they need to be separated soon.
Image

I am also working on germinating some luffa and watermelon seeds in my sprouter as these plants take 90 days to produce fruit. It makes sense to get them to the vining stage by around May when I can have them in 3 gallon pots out on top of warm bricks, and perhaps planted in the ground by mid May so fruiting can occur by around the end of June. Angled luffa can achieve greater than 1 inch thick stems and seem to grow non-stop so it makes sense to get them fruiting nice and early.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 6:36 am 
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Location: Seabeck, Washington Zone 8b Elevation: 531 Feet
I started peas, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and brussel sprouts in the greenhouse a little over a week ago.

I'm also trying a edible tree this year, toona sinensis. I grow the "pink flamingo" version as an ornamental. I'm not sure its safe to eat though, it's leaves taste like onion cooked in gasoline :pukeright: I hope the strain grown for cooking tastes much better.

I Need to start tomatoes soon!


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 3:13 pm 
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Location: zone 3a-4b
I have 4 kinds of tomato, sweet peppers, thyme, rosemary, tibetian sage, garden sage, sweet basil, prunus tomentosa, White Brugs, leek, head lettuce, calla lily, 2 species of canna (not hybrids), mashmallow, morning glory, taro, alocasia, 5 kinds of strawberries, canna/calla/dahlia rhizome, kiwi, and passiflora edulis all started now. Also Caledula. I have others like radish, 5 kinds of leaf lettuce, canelope/honeydew, clover, spinach, carrot seeds for outside i have to direct sow.

Im also waiting for an order of seeds from RPS. That has some hardy cacti, hybrid butia, native roses and hardy euc seeds.

So far I have 150 pots started, and im looking at roughly 400-500 by June.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 3:36 am 
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Location: upstate NY zone 6B Location Details
500 pots will be a lot of watering unless you have humidity domes or a hydroponics system. I usually prefer to direct sow most of my plants that don't take very long to get edible fruits, but some things such as tomatoes, and peppers can easily get planted in April with wall o waters, and have a good start going into May when most people plant stuff.

Here's another thing I've been sprouting inside. These are hardy yucca seeds which will only have a 20-30% germination rate, but I'm lucky to get about a dozen of them to come out especially when fungus gnat larvae can be a threat in the early stages. Once they grow a leaf, they are usually pretty safe. I hope they don't all end up being the same species as this was supposed to be a mix of cold hardy varieties.

Image

Image

Image

This is what they should look like after 2 seasons.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 10:42 am 
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Location: zone 3a-4b
Watering isnt too much of a problem. I have 150 or so houseplants, so Im already used to watering every few days. The problem now, is trying to make room for everything. Usually by now I can toss some stuff in the porch (my "greenhouse") to harden off, but 2 nights at -10C wont be good.

Ive tried direct sowing many things and here only some seem to do ok (at least in my yard). Radish is the obvious one, and things liek cilantro and dill. I never had good experience with direct sowing spinach, but that was because the beds are getting a bit over grown with grass and i started them late. In a few days ill be making mini hoop houses so I can plant out my leeks spinach and head lettuce.

ALso, I have about 6 bags of things stratifying in the fridge. Hazlenuts, green/red plum, light and dark seeded peaches, some maples, and magnolia. I also have about 100 bulbs i didnt get a chance to plant :(

I have HORRIBLE luck with yucca seed. Ive tried about 10 times, and only 2 sets of seed worked, which were sent to me by a friend in Mass. Other then that I cannot germinate them. Now, I can germinate agave no problem....... Thats just how it goes! IF you have a mix, id assume you have some filamentosa glauca and maybe even an elata in the mix. All should do ok where you are if the siil is sharp draining!

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 4:49 pm 
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Quote:
I have HORRIBLE luck with yucca seed. Ive tried about 10 times, and only 2 sets of seed worked, which were sent to me by a friend in Mass. Other then that I cannot germinate them. Now, I can germinate agave no problem....... Thats just how it goes! IF you have a mix, id assume you have some filamentosa glauca and maybe even an elata in the mix. All should do ok where you are if the siil is sharp draining!


I didn't do that good of a job as I just have 20-30% coming up since some of the seeds were taken out by fungus gnat larvae, but after some more experimentation, I've found even more effective ways to germinate seeds that take a while.

For larger seeds bigger than a grain of rice, I would suggest using a sprouter. Mine's a 4 layer one that I got from eBay, and it provides just the right amount of moisture to provoke germination. For example I am getting germination on my luffa seeds only 1.5 days after I set them in there when it usually takes 4-7 days to get those to germinate so I think it would work the same for luffa as well.

Here's the model I use.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Durable-Round-4 ... 19da720fe6

For germinating smaller seeds that may fall through the holes in the sprouter, I prefer using the cup method. I use a standard plastic cup, put a breathable zip lock bag over it, and have a rubber band tight around which will hold in humidity as well as keep fungus gnats out. One thing I've figured out about fungus gnats is that their only objective is to lay eggs as I've seen them lay eggs in dishes of seeds I have drowned in water. I have even seen them break into my zip lock bags with moso seeds in paper towels to lay eggs and after a couple days, there will be lots of larvae swimming around eating away at the seeds.

Here's this method which should be effective for tiny seeds like peppers, tomatoes, and even strawberries or blueberries as these are plants that can transplant well into larger pots.
Image

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:26 am 
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Here are my luffa seeds that I put into my sprouter 4 days ago. 8 out of 11 have sprouted roots, but the 4 watermelon seeds still haven't done anything yet. The sprouter is surprisingly faster than the paper tower method in sprouting seeds.

Image


I am using a fish tank for these seedlings along with a 400 watt metal halide which should be about the same intensity as the summer sun once all the reflective foil is on. I ended up adding foil on all sides except the top to let some heat escape as I intend to keep the operating temperature inside the fish tank at around 90-94F. It gets turned on at night so in the daytime, the temperature should drop down to the low 60s as I only intend to start out with around 8 hours of light per night, then allowing the daytime sunshine give them a bit to carry them through and avoid etoliation.

Here are a few pictures before I set it all up. I now have foil around the whole tank to ensure light doesn't get wasted, and humidity domes on all my pots. The point of all this is to have large vining luffa plants that can be planted outdoors by around mid-May which is when the soil temperature is usually warm enough for planting. These take at least 90 days to produce fruit so it's great to get an early start.

Image

Image

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 12:29 pm 
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Steve - isnt a 400w hilide a bit overkill for that one tank? That light can do a 5x5 table even if its 3 feet above it. I used those pendant lights at the pet store i worked at (looks like thats where you got them, and the tank). Im not saying it isnt going to work, but isnt it a waste of heat and energy?

the display tank was the size of a king sized mattress and almost 3 feet deep. The sump supplied most of the heat, but once the 3 pendant lights came on, even being 3 feet above the tank, still heated up the tank as a whole by 2C, more directly under the lights. And thats in a massive fish tank. You can get the same effects using flourescent strip lights. I have a shelf with a 4 foot double 40 watt bulbs. Its a foot away from the plants, and has a bit of tinfoil against the wall to bounce some heat. Its at least 10C warmer then the room its in, without anything much to hold the heat in.

Are you keeping tabs on the temps?

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 2:02 am 
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I'm not too worried about it being overkill because I know from the past that a 85 watt huge cfl bulb was too weak to keep luffa seedlings healthy even at 2-4 inches away from the bulb. 4500 lumens is just not strong enough. This metal halide is putting out 36000 lumens, and I have reflectors on everything which boosts the actual light they receive even more. Getting up to 94F when I insulate the setup is not all that hot once it has run for a bit, but so far I've only been giving them about 1 hour of light each day because they have not sprouted yet, and this setup is also by a south facing window where they get light anyways.

It only burns around 4 cents per hour of usage so it is not that costly at all, especially when I only plan to have the setup up around a month or whenever I can get these seedling up-potted and outdoors, and I don't intend on ever having the light on for any more than 8 hours per night unless it is absolutely necessary to keep them healthy.

A few reasons I never got a t5 setup even though they may serve the same purpose is because I paid $25 for this metal halide while it would cost $100-200 for a standard 6 bulb setup. I've also seen them, and the light emitted from even the strongest flourescents doesn't appear nearly as bright as a metal halide. I want to mimic outdoor summer conditions as closely as possible so I want these seedlings to have tolerance to a little bit of heat and light from the start.

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