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Old January 27, 2016   #1
TexasTycoon
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Default Kelly's 2016 Apartment Patio Garden

I'll post some pictures here later so that this thread isn't in the wrong section, but I wanted to make myself a placeholder to list what seeds I've already started and what other plants I intend to grow this year. Our apartment lease is up in May, and we haven't decided if we'll renew or move yet, so I'm trying not to plan too many plants. (All of my plants are in pots, in case the title didn't make that clear)

I started some seeds this past weekend (1/23-1/24) because the weather was so gorgeous and I just had that itch. Who knows if anything will come from them, but I wanted to try anyway. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Outside, my Satsuma tree is still doing okay (it never bloomed last year so no fruit from it yet but maybe this year) and my jalapeno plant has a couple of blossoms, one or two peppers growing on it, and the foliage is looking a little shabby but the plant appears strong and bushy. On Saturday I planted some Miracle Gro seed pods I picked up on clearance last year - one is Genovese Basil and the other is Sage. I have no idea if anything will come of them, and I really don't care for the biodegradable pods that never seem to degrade in a pot, but we'll see what happens!

Inside, on a 72-cell Jiffy seed starter tray, I started some flower seeds on Sunday. I planted black hollyhock (Nigra) seeds in one half of the tray, and oriental poppy seeds in the other half. Both were from Ferry-Morse, and the hollyhock seeds were from their "Sow Easy" line so they were coated in this shimmery purple stuff to make them easier to sow. I did 3 hollyhock seeds to a cell and a pinch (yeah you try counting poppy seeds ) of poppy seeds per cell. The clear lid is on the tray and will remain so until I see sprouts, at which point I'll prop it open until everything is sprouted, then off with the lid and the tray will go sit by a window. I started flower seeds in the same tray last year with much success (two of the celosias I started are still alive and about 3 feet tall), but I started them in February so I hope I haven't jumped the gun. I wanted to try poppies since our neighboring city of Georgetown is famous for them (they have a poppy festival every year and all the front yards downtown are full of poppies, it's beautiful), and the hollyhock just caught my eye because I've never grown black flowers before.

This weekend, I'm going to finally get around to starting my Imperator #58 carrot seeds in a big deep pot. I meant to start them earlier this month but just kept forgetting. This will be my third time trying to grow carrots, so I hope the third time's the charm! The first try was in clay soil so we ended up with teeny weeny skinny squiggly carrots with beautiful lush greens, the second try was in an Earth Box-type container but they were overrun by fungus gnats. This time I know about Bt and always have a mosquito dunk in the watering can so gnats shouldn't be an issue.

In March or so, we'll head over to our favorite local nursery and pick out one or two tomato plants to transplant into big pots. Last year we grew a Tycoon plant (my usernamesake) and it did well with few issues, so we'll likely give Tycoon another go this year. I'll ask the owner of the nursery if he can recommend another tomato for our situation since he's very knowledgeable and friendly. We'll plant our pole bean seeds (I can't remember what variety I have) at this time as well, with wire or thin rope from the ceiling of the patio to act as a trellis for them. I think we'll try bell peppers (transplants) again this year, too, but I'm not 100% on it yet.

So, those are my plans so far and like I said I'll get some pictures up soon!
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Last edited by TexasTycoon; January 27, 2016 at 01:07 PM.
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Old January 27, 2016   #2
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And here are some pictures, should get more exciting once things start growing!
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File Type: jpg Snapchat-2298710378686842203.jpg (103.7 KB, 540 views)
File Type: jpg Snapchat-3273982008319558843.jpg (169.5 KB, 539 views)
File Type: jpg Snapchat-4240553755342548466.jpg (115.9 KB, 538 views)
File Type: jpg Snapchat-8977089265699903771.jpg (149.6 KB, 537 views)
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Old January 27, 2016   #3
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Nice pictures, what on Earth are Magic seeds?
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Old January 27, 2016   #4
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I never leave the so called biodegradable net on those things I always rip then off.

The carrot is best sown in the soil it is going to grow in and left to stay.
If you mess the tap root up you just messed the carrot up.

I have also read poppy doesn't like to be transplanted so be careful with it too.

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Old January 27, 2016   #5
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Biodegradables. It reminds me of a little gift I received from someone, a cute little wooden box (4"x4"x4") with a sunflower seed in it and some peat. It says, start the seed in the peat in the box, then plant the box with the seedling directly into the garden soil later, and the natural wood would rot and become fertilizer for the plant, no kidding! When? You wonder who would produce such a brilliant product that makes zero sense, and for my husband to buy it?

Then there are some ideas that may work. For carrots, because of the deep tap roots, seedlings should not be too large before transplanting, and roots are not to be disturbed. To achieve that, sow 4-8 seeds in even distance from each other, per pot( 3x6"). Rather than separating each seedling to transplant, just dump the whole container out and plant the whole block in the soil. Thin out some as baby carrots to make room for bigger fellows to grow.
How about sowing seeds into paper tubes, filled with starter mix?
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Old January 27, 2016   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewWestGardener View Post
Biodegradables. It reminds me of a little gift I received from someone, a cute little wooden box (4"x4"x4") with a sunflower seed in it and some peat. It says, start the seed in the peat in the box, then plant the box with the seedling directly into the garden soil later, and the natural wood would rot and become fertilizer for the plant, no kidding! When? You wonder who would produce such a brilliant product that makes zero sense, and for my husband to buy it?

Then there are some ideas that may work. For carrots, because of the deep tap roots, seedlings should not be too large before transplanting, and roots are not to be disturbed. To achieve that, sow 4-8 seeds in even distance from each other, per pot( 3x6"). Rather than separating each seedling to transplant, just dump the whole container out and plant the whole block in the soil. Thin out some as baby carrots to make room for bigger fellows to grow.
How about sowing seeds into paper tubes, filled with starter mix?
Bio degradable I have some of those little nets in the yard from years ago.
They went from Styrofoam clam shells at work to biodegradable clam shells to eat out of.
What a joke they are being put in a landfill that stays frozen all year long.
They will be able to dig that place up 20 thousand years from now and it will look the same as the day they buried it.

Transplanting carrots I have had good luck with as I would dig up the whole dirt ball and move it.

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Old January 27, 2016   #7
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Originally Posted by jmsieglaff View Post
Nice pictures, what on Earth are Magic seeds?
Oh, I explained in my text that the hollyhock seeds were coated in a purple sparkly coating to make them easier to sow, that's all.
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Old January 27, 2016   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Worth1 View Post
I never leave the so called biodegradable net on those things I always rip then off.

The carrot is best sown in the soil it is going to grow in and left to stay.
If you mess the tap root up you just messed the carrot up.

I have also read poppy doesn't like to be transplanted so be careful with it too.

Worth
I haven't started my carrot seeds yet, but they're going to go straight into the pot that they're going to grow in, I have no plans of transplanting them.

With the flower seeds in the starter cells, I leave the mesh on until I transplant so that things don't get messy, but I do take it off when I transplant them.

I haven't read anything about poppies, so if they fail when I transplant, I won't be too sad about it haha. Just having fun this year and trying not to read too many different things from too many different sources and getting myself confused.
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Old January 27, 2016   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewWestGardener View Post
Biodegradables. It reminds me of a little gift I received from someone, a cute little wooden box (4"x4"x4") with a sunflower seed in it and some peat. It says, start the seed in the peat in the box, then plant the box with the seedling directly into the garden soil later, and the natural wood would rot and become fertilizer for the plant, no kidding! When? You wonder who would produce such a brilliant product that makes zero sense, and for my husband to buy it?

Then there are some ideas that may work. For carrots, because of the deep tap roots, seedlings should not be too large before transplanting, and roots are not to be disturbed. To achieve that, sow 4-8 seeds in even distance from each other, per pot( 3x6"). Rather than separating each seedling to transplant, just dump the whole container out and plant the whole block in the soil. Thin out some as baby carrots to make room for bigger fellows to grow.
How about sowing seeds into paper tubes, filled with starter mix?
Oh I'm not transplanting the carrots, I'm going to plant them right into a big pot and just let them grow. The only seedlings I'm transplanting are flowers. I'm going to thin the carrot seedlings by cutting them down as far as I can, rather than pulling them out so I don't disturb the other plants.
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Old January 28, 2016   #10
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Originally Posted by TexasTycoon View Post
Oh, I explained in my text that the hollyhock seeds were coated in a purple sparkly coating to make them easier to sow, that's all.
Got ya.

Those poppy seeds are tiny. Hard to say which is tinier, those or thyme seeds. Thyme seeds are also super tiny.
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Old January 28, 2016   #11
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Great variety. Nicotinia seeds are also very very small.

You can make your own carrot seed tape w some toilet paper and wet flour as glue, works great and saves a lot of seed. Guaranteed spacing and a breeze to thin out.
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Old January 28, 2016   #12
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Great variety. Nicotinia seeds are also very very small.

You can make your own carrot seed tape w some toilet paper and wet flour as glue, works great and saves a lot of seed. Guaranteed spacing and a breeze to thin out.
That's a good idea, I might try that!
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Old January 28, 2016   #13
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This morning, I noticed some of the hollyhocks are starting to sprout!
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Old January 28, 2016   #14
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I was in Lowes the other day and saw those Ferry Morse "magic" black hollyhock seeds. Although I was tempted to buy the black ones, I was even more tempted by the multi-coloured Dwarf Hollyhocks that only grow 2' tall and apparently do well in containers! They only had the magic/coated seeds which cost $1 more a packet than the un-magic/coated ones, but I bought them anyway. It sounds as if you had excellent germination Kelly. I'll be interested to see pics of them in flower on your patio!

Linda
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Old January 28, 2016   #15
TexasTycoon
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I was in Lowes the other day and saw those Ferry Morse "magic" black hollyhock seeds. Although I was tempted to buy the black ones, I was even more tempted by the multi-coloured Dwarf Hollyhocks that only grow 2' tall and apparently do well in containers! They only had the magic/coated seeds which cost $1 more a packet than the un-magic/coated ones, but I bought them anyway. It sounds as if you had excellent germination Kelly. I'll be interested to see pics of them in flower on your patio!

Linda
I'm interested to see them, too! Only thing I'm worried about is finding a suitable container for their height, and making sure they get enough sun without blocking sun from my other plants. Oh, the trials of apartment gardening! I did get the seeds at Lowe's, and the black flowers just were so striking I had to get them (I had actually only intended to get two seed packets that day - one packet of carrot seeds and one of flowers and I'd already grabbed the poppies).
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