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Old May 5, 2017   #1
clkeiper
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Default Talk to me about "dry farming"

I have not heard of this except for on here. Are there places more suitable to do this than perhaps Ohio? What varieties do you use? Or are any suitable?
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Old May 6, 2017   #2
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Early Girl and Punta Banda both have done well for me to dry farm. Some cherries would be good candidates I would think. I liked to do this as it makes EG quite tasty, but less productive. It's with holding water to a large extent after the tomato plant is established well, gradually so the roots seek water deeper. Can be done any place you don't have excessive rain.
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Old May 6, 2017   #3
ginger2778
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Very interested in this thread. I would love to know more details. My visit to California last year was how I learned it is a thing. They have had a drought for more than 7 years, so most of the farmers who were at the farmers markets were doing this technique.
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Old May 6, 2017   #4
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Dry farming is nothing new.
It is simply farming without irrigation.
All of our corn cotton and other crops here are done that way.
The advantages are you dont get salt build up in some types of soil from irrigation.
The disadvantages are you depend on the rain, if it doesn't rain at the right time of the year like a cool wet winter and spring like we have you are doomed.
Almost all of the crops like wheat in Eastern Washington are dry farmed as well as in North Dakota.
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Old May 6, 2017   #5
Cole_Robbie
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The Chinese varieties I have tried all seem to demand being dry-farmed. When I put them on the drip irrigation with the rest of my plants, they split and crack too much.

Tomato plants in my area grow in May and June, then begin to bear in July. Last year, we had no rain at all in June, after a wet May, and the tilled garden tomatoes were excellent, especially Big Beef. That was perfect weather.
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Old May 6, 2017   #6
Worth1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cole_Robbie View Post
The Chinese varieties I have tried all seem to demand being dry-farmed. When I put them on the drip irrigation with the rest of my plants, they split and crack too much.

Tomato plants in my area grow in May and June, then begin to bear in July. Last year, we had no rain at all in June, after a wet May, and the tilled garden tomatoes were excellent, especially Big Beef. That was perfect weather.
The place I used to live had a good thick layer of sandy loam on top of a very thick layer of grey potters clay.
I never had to water during a normal year way up until June and them very little.
Sandy loam is very good at keeping moisture from evaporating and clay is very good at holding moisture if it has that layer of sand or sandy loam on top.
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Old May 6, 2017   #7
clkeiper
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Worth1 View Post
The place I used to live had a good thick layer of sandy loam on top of a very thick layer of grey potters clay.
I never had to water during a normal year way up until June and them very little.
Sandy loam is very good at keeping moisture from evaporating and clay is very good at holding moisture if it has that layer of sand or sandy loam on top.
Worth
then I am thinking this is pretty much out for me. I have sand and shale, and rocks and boulders on occasion, but not clay. that was what I was wanting to know... where and how is it done. thanks Worth. I guess that means all of our farm fields are dry farmed. what grows grows and what dies from lack of moisture is beyond dryfarming. give me two miles and there is never a need of water. it is a swamp down there. back in the 1800's they lost a few trains in a derailment.... never to be recovered.
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Old May 6, 2017   #8
Worth1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clkeiper View Post
then I am thinking this is pretty much out for me. I have sand and shale, and rocks and boulders on occasion, but not clay. that was what I was wanting to know... where and how is it done. thanks Worth. I guess that means all of our farm fields are dry farmed. what grows grows and what dies from lack of moisture is beyond dryfarming. give me two miles and there is never a need of water. it is a swamp down there. back in the 1800's they lost a few trains in a derailment.... never to be recovered.
Out in Bend Texas not to be confused with Big Bend in many places they have nothing but sand and grow some stuff like peanuts that way.
But you have to pick your crops carefully.
My cousins live on the river so they run big Detroit pumps day and night.
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Old May 6, 2017   #9
Deborah
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When I forget to water my Big Beef, I just say cheerfully, "Oh well! Dry farming!"
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Old May 6, 2017   #10
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My friend in Nebraska dry farms wheat. When I was there they told me fifty percent of the farming in that area was dry farming. Also their wheat commanded more money because it was higher in protein for some reason.
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Old May 6, 2017   #11
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I dry farmed Siccagno di Valledolmo in the tunnel last year. They performed well and the roots were unbelievably long and thick when I pulled them. As for taste Idk as it was my first year growing them. I'll say the flavor was very intense in a way I didn't like, but I'm not a fan of reds. My sister thought they were good but she likes any tomato. I'm going to grow again under regular conditions and dry to see if there's a difference.
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Old May 6, 2017   #12
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Im in Ohio and only water my tomatoes at planting.
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