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 Post subject: Grow boxes, planters, and other containers
PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 10:24 pm 
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Tofu Pup Forever
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Joined: Thu May 03, 2012 12:02 am
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I have terrible, dry, crumbling soil in my backyard; but I'd like to have a garden. Does anyone use a grow box, or a planter, or some other method of out-of-the-ground gardening? What do you recommend?

Also, something inexpensive would be preferable :'D


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 Post subject: Re: Grow boxes, planters, and other containers
PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 6:00 am 
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i have the worst soil on earth in my backyard but with some basic, simple, CHEAP emendments my garden is going awesome.
First contact your coop extension office or go on garden web for your area, and talk to people with similar dirt and see what you can do to fix it. if it's dry and crumbling, well, i just heard that half of the counties in the US are declared state of emergency for drought, so it's not surprising.

i mean, sure, you could always do raised bed with "imported" soil or containers or whatever, but unless you've got lead or contamination or something there's almost no reason you can't use all that dirt in your backyard.

also, remember that planters, boxes, etc are all going to dry out faster than in the ground anyway, so if weather is a factor, it will be more intense if they're in containers.

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 Post subject: Re: Grow boxes, planters, and other containers
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 10:39 am 
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Wears Pleather Undies
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Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:17 pm
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Nyu! wrote:
I have terrible, dry, crumbling soil in my backyard; but I'd like to have a garden. Does anyone use a grow box, or a planter, or some other method of out-of-the-ground gardening? What do you recommend?

Also, something inexpensive would be preferable :'D


I don't have a yard, so I use containers to garden and I am having way less luck getting food crops to flourish compared to people I know that garden straight in the ground, because a lot of nutrients leech out of the bottom of the containers and aren't naturally replaced like they are in the ground. Plus buying containers and soil to fill them isn't cheap. So if you have a yard you're lucky and should use it rather than containers!

That said starting out with good soil is the way to begin. When I was a kid my parents amended their soil (which was just like yours) with soil dredged from the bottom of a lake that was being filled. I'm not sure how they got access to that, but maybe you could try Craigslist to see if someone is unloading soil? Or you might want to research how to amend dry soil (here's the first link I found on that http://shine.yahoo.com/healthy-living/l ... 78246.html). There's lots of things you can add.

Unfortunately there's a bit of initial outlay of funds when it comes to gardening, I'm learning from first hand experience it's really not as simple as sticking something in soil and watering. Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Grow boxes, planters, and other containers
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 1:23 pm 
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From what I've experimented with in my shiitake soil backyard, is that amending the soil to the extent I would need to to make it nice would cost a lot of money, and be very hard, as I would have to get it way deeper down than I can reasonably do. I really tried do this in this one area of my yard, and the stuff that's growing there is doing way poorer than the stuff in the containers I have, and it's ridiculously weedy there, seems harder to control there than elsewhere (I think because I broke up and tilled in a lot of the little roots and suckers that end up becoming more weeds). I think raised beds would have been the winning solution for price, and plant health. Right now I have these fabric bags, maybe 20 gallons I think? Anyways, really big, as wide as a wine barrel. They're working well, but aren't that pretty, and are only useful for single plant type stuff like tomato, peppers, etc. Once I start wanting to plant shiitake in rows, a raised bed would be a lot more useful.

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