First of all DON’T FORGET THE ANNUAL PLANT SALE AND GARDEN SHOW IS JUST 53 DAYS AWAY!!
MARCH 23, 2019.
On our web page (cmbga.org) is a link that gives gardening reminders for each month of the year.
Here is the link for January
Garden Reminders for January
and for February
Garden Reminders for February
From Kridler’s Korner: Pointers and helpful hints on things to do for your garden
OK if you are going to put in vegetables then you want to till up the soil this week before we get rainfall next weekend!
IF you put in a winter cover crop over your whole vegetable garden last September of either mustards or Brassicas, or Elbon Rye (or you have green weeds now) then you can till under your green cover crop to add organic matter to the soils.
Research shows that it takes 57 days for a living green cover crop to break down/rot/compost the fresh green leaves and living roots of green plants and then be at the “maximum available nutrient” amount after you till it under in the spring time getting ready to plant the “summer” crops.
This week you should put in a block or raised bed of onions or garlic if you eat these! I like to raise up a section of the garden about 8” and use a 4 foot wide bed for onions, kale/cabbage, broccoli, turnips, mustards, bok choy, mizunas and other cold hardy winter type crops. These must all share a very well drained sandy soils locations.
You should already be eating Snow Peas or English peas, but it is not too late to plant them!
This first tilling of the vegetable garden you want to add in all of the soil fertilizers and minerals that your soil test says that you needed!
First of Jan. TAMU soil testing lab had a 9 day turn around from when they received a soil sample till they sent it back to the sender!
When in doubt, BEFORE you till for the first time this week (second and third tilling for some) you will go ahead and collect a soil sample from the entire garden and save this in a clean plastic bucket or container.
Then you will spread evenly 10# of Dolomite Lime for every 1,000 square feet of vegetable garden, this is 435# of dolomite lime for a full one acre vegetable garden.
IF you did not fertilize your garden after about June last summer, then you will evenly spread 5# of 17-17-17 for every 1,000 square feet.
This would be about 200# of 17-17-17 for a full acre.
Or you are adding 34# each of Nitrogen-Phosphorus-Potassium; the N-P-K portion of plant nutrients or you are adding approximately 34 Parts Per Million of each of these to your garden.
You will send off the pre-tilling soil sample and in two weeks or so you will know what other minerals/fertilizers you will need to add before you till your garden in late March for tomatoes, beans, peas, corn, etc!
Keep track of how many pounds of what you add to the garden all summer!
I don’t plant potatoes, but if you do, you want to go buy them at Kelly’s Produce, maybe Texas Country Farm supply will have the seed potatoes as you will want to plant them about Valentine’s day Feb. 14th to about the very latest Feb. 28th. There are only two major seed potato varieties that grow well in this area, one red and one white variety and you need deep sandy well drained soils.
Potatoes require different fertilizer amounts, than onions;
corn requires different from them and
peas and beans are different from all of these!
You should plant all of your different crops in blocks, so you would till in the correct fertilizers in these blocks about two weeks before you were going to plant them.
Along the north ends of bigger gardens you will begin planting long rows of black oil seed sunflowers (bird seed sunflowers). These will help to attract pollinators to your vegetables that require pollinators.
Plant the first row in early march, add another row every two weeks for six weeks. Then when the last row planted is knee high then add another half row so that you will have fresh sunflowers blooming all summer. North side of the garden because if you have good fertilizer, rich soils, the sunflower plants will bloom at 9 to 10 feet tall. If you have pitiful garden soils then they will bloom at about 30” to 36” tall.
IF you have good garden soils your onions will be 4” to 6” in diameter at harvest, Purple top turnips will be 3 to 5 inches in diameter but if you let these turnips go on to bloom, a mature Purple Top turnip will weigh in at about 12#. Blue ribbon winning turnips at county fairs will often weigh in from 20 to 30 pounds!