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Old February 1, 2015   #61
roper2008
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Roper, I use my regular lawn/yard crew to bring my compost and put it in the beds for me. They can get the Nutrigreen or get me mushroom compost from Pa and I opt for the mushroom compost. This will be my third year using it and I've been happy with it. I'm not sure where you are in Va Beach but I'm up near Shore Drive. My lawn service is TJ's. They are taking orders for compost now.
Thanks, I usually buy mushroom compost and cow manure/compost mix from home
depot by the bags. I don't need much. Just need to top off the beds.. I live in Kings
Grant, near Kingston Elementary School. Today I went to the Garden Show at the
the Convention Center. A vender was selling coco coir for $27 a block. No, thanks,
I can buy a 3.5 bale of pro-mix for that price.
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Old February 2, 2015   #62
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Roper, I understand. I used to do the bags, too, but when we moved, my garden got a lot bigger and of course I'm older and my back is older, blah, blah, you know.

A good friend of mine taught 1st grade at Kingston for many years and I have good friends who live on Kings Grant Road. And you have Duck Donuts by your house, you lucky duck. I say that like I actually eat donuts. Maybe one each year.
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Old February 2, 2015   #63
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We're getting some rain this morning, so just put our trays of onion seedlings outside to get a nice soaking (seems like seedlings appreciate getting their share of rain, they always look healthier afterwards -- from nitrogen etc. dissolved in the rain?)

That's as much gardening as I've had time for... drawback of working for a seed company = being stuck in the office til April! (After that I get to be about half-time outside... but til then, I'm missing gardening a lot...)
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Old February 2, 2015   #64
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This may seem crazy, but this year I am planting with the moon. I thought I would give it a go- see if I can get better yields. So I am waiting to plant my onions on the 10th. ANyone ever done this before?
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Old February 2, 2015   #65
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I have not planted by the moon, nor do I know anyone who has, but I've been reading about it at the Farmer's Almanac site. They have some other interesting things to do by the moon besides gardening, like when to go camping and when to potty train. I'll be interested to hear what you think after this season, Linz. Please keep us posted.
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Old February 2, 2015   #66
roper2008
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Roper, I understand. I used to do the bags, too, but when we moved, my garden got a lot bigger and of course I'm older and my back is older, blah, blah, you know.

A good friend of mine taught 1st grade at Kingston for many years and I have good friends who live on Kings Grant Road. And you have Duck Donuts by your house, you lucky duck. I say that like I actually eat donuts. Maybe one each year.
Haven't tried their donuts yet. I just keep on driving.
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Old February 3, 2015   #67
shelleybean
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I know what you mean. I volunteered for something at my kids' school and went to a meeting and there were two boxes of Duck Donuts there. I had lemon. OMG, one of the best donuts I ever had. But I would not allow myself to stop and buy a dozen. No way.

When we were in Duck last summer, I went to the original location and I am not kidding, it took me about 45 minutes to get a box of donuts for my kids. Long line in the first building to place my order and pay, then long line to the other building to wait for my order to be made. And after all that, I didn't even eat one. I only went because we were on vacation and it was splurge kind of thing. I'm a lot more likely to have a tomato sandwich for breakfast than a donut.
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Old February 8, 2015   #68
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This week I cut any broccoli and Brussels sprouts worth keeping and cleaned my whole winter garden out except for one row of collards and the shallots and parsley. I had already pulled all the root vegetables up. I have a few beets and carrots left but they're pretty much all eaten. I called to set up my compost delivery so I'll get all the beds ready to go. I'll start pepper and eggplant seed this week. My kids have spring break the first week of March and as soon as they go back to school, I'll start planting my spring garden outside. I have:

Waverex peas
Charleston Wakefield cabbage
All Year Round lettuce
Four Seasons lettuce
Arugula
Oriole chard
Giant Nobel spinach
Sparkler radishes
Crystal Wax onions
Hollow Crown parsnips
Burped Golden beets
Giant of Italy parsley

I've already started a few of these cool weather things and they're under lights in the laundry room. Nice to have something growing, something to look forward to.

What do you guys have planned for spring?
I was wondering about this post. You have started peppers and eggplant already? I
have started some chinense peppers because they grow so slow, but regular peppers
I think is too soon. When do you plant them outside?
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Old February 8, 2015   #69
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I usually plant mine May 15 or a bit later. Peppers grow slow for me and I usually have to redo/replant seeds that don't sprout.
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Old February 8, 2015   #70
Ken B
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We usually put out peppers ~May 15-20; if we use row cover, we'll get them out a week or so earlier, but usually we're busy enough with the tomatoes that we end up settling for May 15-20.

shelleybean -- how do you like Charleston Wakefield cabbage? I keep meaning to try it and see how it compares to Early Jersey Wakefield.
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Old February 8, 2015   #71
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I usually play it safe for my peppers and plant out May 1st.
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Old February 8, 2015   #72
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I put my peppers, eggplant and tomatoes out around April 15, but may wait a week or so longer this time because of the cooler spring temps we've had the last couple of years. So when I start hardening off the seedlings, the peppers and eggplant will be about 9 weeks old and the tomatoes about 7 weeks old.
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Old February 8, 2015   #73
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Ken, both cabbages are very similar. The Charleston Wakefield is a little bit bigger (and later), but good for slaw or cooking. And it will grow well in the fall here, too. I haven't tried Early Jersey Wakefield in the fall.

Today we got into the low 60's and it was a treat. I wish it would stay but next weekend looks pretty cold again. Ready for spring.
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Old February 9, 2015   #74
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I should point out two other reasons I've already started.

My heat mat and seed starting set up is here in the office by my computer, but my grow lights are in an unheated laundry room. It's a tall until that holds 8 flats. At this time of year, that room is 10-15 degrees cooler than the house, so though it helps make stocky little tomato seedlings, those are less than ideal temps for peppers and eggplant. Their growth is slow, and even starting them now, by the time I get them outside, they'll still only be about 3 inches tall. Similar to the size you'd see sold in market packs.

My second reason involved a trip coming up. My sister will be here checking in on our smallest pets while we're gone and I'm comfortable with her watering the seedlings under the lights, but I don't want to leave anything under the dome while we're gone. I don't want to have to worry about damping off and I don't want her to have to keep checking to see if anything has germinated. I want to be done with that by the time we leave.

Right here by the water, my last frost will be right around the end of March. Go two weeks beyond that to be safe and that leaves me around tax day. Last year I planted on April 13, the year before that was April 9. I don't remember before that but I've been using tax day as my target for about 20 years without any problems. What I do worry about is spring storms with strong winds coming in off the water, and the possibility of hail, but I'm not worried about frost at that point. If I lived further inland, yes, but not right here.
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Old February 9, 2015   #75
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I live about 8 miles in from the coast. I'm going to start my peppers and eggplant
next sunday. A little early, but I'm ready to start them. Tomatoes I usually plant
out middle of April. Those I will start the end of this month.
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