HELP!

help
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To all gardeners out in the blogging world:

If you are an experienced gardener and would not mind answering an avalanche of probably very simplistic questions… Apply here!

I think that there is such a thing as lettuce that you can cut off at the tops and it keeps growing? That is what I want to grow. I find it tastier that iceberg lettuce. What are some varieties that I might like? Would this lettuce grow well in a container garden?

I love tomatoes. But when I grow tomatoes, they either do great… or they die. I have no knowledge as to what I do to help them… or to harm them? Are some people just natural tomato plant killers? What kind of tomatoes are the tastiest for a bacon-lettuce-tomato cuisine?

I am getting ready to plant carrots. I like the little ones. There seem to be many varieties of a baby carrot. Is there actually a baby carrot… or do they mostly murder large carrots and cut them up?

They say – on the web- radishes are easy to grow. What do you eat with a radish?

What are the best cucumbers to grow on a climbing trellis? Do you have a great recipe for a cucumber salad? My mom used to at just cucumbers and dressing as a meal in the summer sometimes. What dressings go with cucumbers?

Don’t worry, these are just the first five that come to mind. I am sure that I will have more!



Written for The Daily Post: March 24th   Help

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9 thoughts on “HELP!

  1. I think the salad you mean is what we call “Schnittsalat”. I found it in Wikipedia in German, but nowhere could I find the english version. Translated literally it means cutting salad and I had it in the garden. You let it grow, cut it down and it grows again.
    I grew tomatoes for a few years. I don’t know where you are in the world, but if you have rain, you have a problem. You must protect your tomatoes from rain, either errecting a tomato house to cover them, something like a glass house, or have special plastic covers for them, otherwise they will get tomato rot turning the growing tomatoes into a brown soft smelly fruit and the only cure is to throw it away. Otherwise I used to grow the seeds myself and as soon as they got to a reasonable size I would plant them. Someone told me to put stones around the base of the plant to keep the warmth in. I did it, and it did not harm. Otherwise when the plant is growing pinch out the sprouting parts that appear between the leaves. Make sure you have a good support for the plant. We can buy special steel supports for tomato plants in Switzerland. Feed your plants regularly and keep an eye out for any aphids which you should remove. I also had a garlic water mixture I sprayed them with (self made) which keeps the insects away.
    Radishes are no problem. they just grow and get big.
    I never went for carrots, only for the leaves because the swallow tail butterfly likes to lay its eggs on them. they have a very pretty caterpillar which afterwards turns into a lovely large butterfly.
    I also grew cucumbers which was no big problem. The problem was keeping the slugs away if it was a damp Summer at the beginning as they would bring their knives and forks and eat all your leaves.
    If you want to know more, ask. I used to have a lot of success with my various vegetables, but due to becoming a golden oldie, I no longer have the energy to grow them.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s been a while since I’ve had a space to grow veggies, but – in reverse order:

    Some of the best recipes for cucumber salad can be found on BigOven.com and Recipes.com

    Baby carrots are immature carrots

    To me, the best slicing tomatoes are Beefsteak and Brandywine. The problem with growing tomatoes is that if they grow too fast, usually from too much water, they’ll split. Not enough water, of course, and they’ll die. Then there are the lovely green hornworms that you can’t see until you touch one unless you’re looking super close.

    Last, but not least, although we very rarely grew the “cut and come again” type of lettuce, I believe this will answer your questions.

    *SIGH* Now you’ve got me hankering for some fresh tomatoes and cucumbers. I’ll have to find a farmer’s market somewhere soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Well …. you’re well on your way with the answers provided ….. one of the best things to do ….. find a very reputable nursery/gardening center in your area …. I mean reputable ….. as in – this is what they do for a living …. i.e. not Walmart or some big box store ….. and pack up and head to this nursery …. and spend time looking around and checking the different things out.

    At most nurseries/garden centers you’ll find full time qualified staff that will be able to point and direct you in the right directions. Of course, start doing your homework too.

    Salads are cool weather crops …. so even if you buy plants already started, or choose to start from seeds, you’ll find that excessive heat will cause the plants to bolt – which means get leggy and seed. Which makes it bitter and generally inedible. Romaine is a type of cut and regrow itself type of lettuce. And if you consider some of the leaf lettuces …. you simply do successive sowings …. a few weeks apart to ensure a good supply. And remember, no matter what type of plants, once they are cut back, it takes time for them to regrow, so you need to start with more than one or two.

    As for cucumbers?Most people tend to the burpless variety, but if you just like cukes, then you can plant most any type. And since you’re going vertical with some of your plantings, you have to remember that the actual base container has to be heavy enough to not topple in the elements – like rain or wind, or simple under the weight of the plants as they grow.

    Tomatoes are easy to grow – but they can be a bit picky. The best/ most ideal thing – don’t overwater them – if you buy pre-started plants, then you’ll have a faster crop earlier. And since you’re doing containers …. well, they will need regular fertilizing. Either a dilution you’ll have to mix, like 15-30-15 or 20-20-20 – it’s the middle number that promotes flowering … which is where you get the fruit – or a slow release granular fertilizer, that with each watering and rainfall, will slowly dissolve. Next up, when watering, if the rain isn’t doing it for you – you need to water at the base of the plants. Don’t drench the leaves and stalks etc. This invites diseases. As I said, established tomato plants can take a beating. They can dry out to the point of wilting, but it’s not an ideal thing to repeatedly or intentionally do this.
    Varieties? Big and juicy means Beefstake. Someone mentioned Brandywine – a fine heirloom variety. Try cherry Tomatoes too – they are great mouth poppers. And of yeah, you need to know whether you are buying a “determinate or indeterminate” plant. What does this mean? Determinate plants grow to a certain height and size and then stop. They reach their maximum and then fruit. Indeterminate will keep going and going. And since you’re doing containers, consider trying different types to see what starts working for you. As for pests? Try planting some marigolds or tagetes around the containers edges. It’s one of several “companion plants” that help repel some of the “bad bugs.”

    Consider this too – you’re starting new – and it’s going to try your patience, and it will take several years of seeing what’s what to get a feel for things. But don’t be discouraged – because things like weather etc. are, clearly beyond our control, so if you have an excellent summer – enough heat but not arid, with enough sun, but not blistering heat etc. it can mean an wonderful experience.

    Radishes are great in salads, or just as they are, with sandwiches. They have a peppery bite and are “hot” – but are lovely.

    Carrots? Well, they are direct sowers …. and prefer a more sandy loam …. and depth …. but since you’re going for baby carrots, then that’s not so much of a problem. But you will need to thin out your seedlings once they start growing ….. most things, except for say, leaf lettuce, will need space to settle themselves.

    I would suggest, if possible, make the investment of buying pre-started plants, if possible. Most plants are easy to sow and sprout, but it takes time and patience etc. And if you’re not so green with things yet, it might save you some “heartache.”

    As for quality? Buy the best you can afford – it tends to offer better results in the end. That being said, there is nothing wrong with buying from Box Store garden centers, but you have to try to on site, when the plant shipments come rolling in and are then placed on the floor.

    Oh yeah, almost forgot …. tomatoes ….. keep the plants “clean” …. i.e. leaves naturally yellow and start to brown and decay, so when you see an abundance of them and it’s “normal” pick them off and out of the container. In this instance, leaving them to compost themselves in the planter is not a good idea.

    hope this helps …. happy starting 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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