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General discussion regarding the techniques and methods used to successfully grow tomato plants in containers.

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Old July 23, 2018   #1
Greatgardens
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Default EarthBox Alignment?

My Earthboxes are on a stand that I built to make it easier on my back and knees, and also makes it easy to level the boxes and tie them down for storm protection. The wooden stand sets on regular concrete blocks so that the (treated wood) is not in contact with the soil. The stand should last indefinitely, and with weed-block fabric, I get very few weeds under the boxes.

The stand sets east-west, and that means that with two plants per box, I have a "north row" and a "south row" of plants. There is approximately 18" between the boxes. The north row generally has more fungal issues on the leaves, even when I have exactly the same variety on the north and south side of the box. The prevailing wind in the summer is usually from the southwest.

So I'm wondering -- do you think I'd be better off setting the boxes (not the stand) on an angle -- say 45-degrees. It should be a zero-sum situation (what I might add to the north row will be taken away from the south row), since the amount of sunlight is fixed. But setting them on an angle seems like it might better distribute the sunlight between the two rows. And perhaps might get more breeze to the north row, also. (?)

Or, I'm splitting hairs... what do you think?
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Old July 23, 2018   #2
ginger2778
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I think if they are getting a lot of sun, either way will be fine. I only wish to point out that the black side of the mulch cover is for winter growing, the white side out is for summer, according to Earthbox directions. Keeps the roots from getting too hot that way.
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Old July 23, 2018   #3
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If you tilt the boxes at an 45 degree angle, would that affect the water levels?
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Old July 23, 2018   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imp View Post
If you tilt the boxes at an 45 degree angle, would that affect the water levels?

No. The platform is level. The boxes will still set level, just turned to the southwest. I'm not tilting the boxes, just turning the boxes as they sit on the platform. The dots in the little diagram here mean nothing except to hold the spacing using the TV editor.


Current placement top view:
||....||....||....||


Turned 45-deg top view:
//....//....//....//

Last edited by Greatgardens; July 23, 2018 at 12:43 PM.
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Old July 23, 2018   #5
Greatgardens
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Originally Posted by ginger2778 View Post
I think if they are getting a lot of sun, either way will be fine. I only wish to point out that the black side of the mulch cover is for winter growing, the white side out is for summer, according to Earthbox directions. Keeps the roots from getting too hot that way.

I had thought that was just for the South? Actually, checking the owners manual it says "if the peak growing temps are over 85 degrees, turn the white side up." We are pretty close to that 85 degree mark. I'll try some next year! Thanks.



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Old July 23, 2018   #6
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Originally Posted by Greatgardens View Post
I had thought that was just for the South? Actually, checking the owners manual it says "if the peak growing temps are over 85 degrees, turn the white side up." We are pretty close to that 85 degree mark. I'll try some next year! Thanks.



-GG
Everybody is having a really hot summer! Yes I was pointing this out for next year.
I use mine with the white cover while growing here in the Winter and it rarely gets to the 85゚ mark. Of course our sun is very intense no matter which time of the year
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Old July 24, 2018   #7
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Default It's Black and White (or Red All Over)

This will turn into a nice easy experiment -- does it make any difference with tomatoes (in 5b) as to white or black? My guess is that it won't make any difference in root temperatures since once the plants are of decent size, they largely shade the plastic. In the spring (May), when the plants are small, it is well below the 85 degree mark. Anyway, I'll stick a stem thermometer in both white and black sides. and see how the box temperatures vary.



I have looked at Red vs Black before, and can see no difference there.


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Old July 24, 2018   #8
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Originally Posted by ginger2778 View Post
Everybody is having a really hot summer! Yes I was pointing this out for next year.
I use mine with the white cover while growing here in the Winter and it rarely gets to the 85゚ mark. Of course our sun is very intense no matter which time of the year
Hi marsha, this is a little off topic but can you tell me how you water your EB's. Do you do it by hand or do you have some sort of automatic watering system.
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