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Messages - james150

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1
hey james...i just saw this posting.  i am really surprised no one replied to you.   :o

i don't know much about pumpkins.  sorry.  the almanac recommends 'Autumn Gold' as a good one to grow for carving

https://www.almanac.com/plant/pumpkins

this site had a good list of varieties for each purpose (painting, mini ones, etc).  they also recommended the autumn gold as a carver.

https://extension.illinois.edu/pumpkins/varieties.cfm


what did you end up going with?

Hi,

I ended up with Connecticut field and Howden field pumpkins as well as Big Max, all from Morgan County Seeds.

We are well along in our season and I should know if they work out in two months.

Thanks for the reply,

Regards,

Jim

2
General Discussion / Re: Heavy Duty Raised Beds
« on: April 11, 2017, 12:19:41 PM »
Wow,
Thanks for all the helpful replies . . .my main issue with these beds is cost . . .I don't know how much they cost but I bet it's a lot.

Great replies and food for thought.

Regards,

Jim

3
General Discussion / Heavy Duty Raised Beds
« on: April 09, 2017, 03:35:56 AM »
Recently while traveling I saw these heavy-duty raised bed gardens.  They appear to be made of galvanized steel and the powder coated.  They sit at a convenient height for seated weeding and even incorporate tabs and attachments for drip irrigation.  I'd love to have some (my raised beds are oak) but I bet they are pricy.  I'd never seen anything like these before and thought I'd share some pictures.

Regards,

Jim

4
Hi,

I just got an acre to use to grow pumpkins and was wondering what are good pumpkins to grow for novelty and carving and where to buy the seeds from?  Up to now I only grew organic pie pumpkins.  SW Wisconsin.

Thanks,

Jim

5
That's what I was wondering.  The sun is brutal here in AZ but it would only be for 6 or 8 weeks and it would be inside the garage during the daytime.  I think I will try the humidity domes and see how it goes, if I need more protection, off to Lowes I go.

Thank you,

Jim

6
I bought mine at sams also, instead of a plastic cover I use humidity domes or tops on all the trays.. I have a couple plastic shelves also they dont hold but 8 trays vs the big one will hold 20... I can do do 36 flats at a time if I want..

That's interesting . . .I can do humidity domes, rather than enclose the whole thing . . .that would work fine I think. 

Thanks to you both for the replies.

Regards,

Jim

7
Hi All,

I am in need of a small portable greenhouse/seed starter for about 20 flats of seeds.  It needs to be portable and fit through a doorway.  I noticed that Donald used commercial wire rack shelving on wheels covered with plastic for this type of thing.  That would work fine for me if I could find a vinyl cover for the shelving unit.  I can find them but they are outrageously expensive.  On the order of $120-220 each. 

Does anyone have a source for a cheaper one  or any thoughts on my cutting plastic and making my own.  I'm not sure what plastic to use and what tape would hold up to the sun here in Arizona.

Thanks for the input.  Attached is a photo of a commercial unit with a vinyl cover.

Regards,

Jim


   

8
General Discussion / Re: Any Good Quality Garden Carts to be found???
« on: August 18, 2016, 05:08:16 PM »
James 150 I bet if U had the time U could sell a few of these carts

Rat


Yeah, IF I had time . . .

Regards,

Jim

9
General Discussion / Re: Any Good Quality Garden Carts to be found???
« on: August 16, 2016, 04:56:45 PM »
Hi,

I bought these frames and made 4 wheel flat wagons of the size I needed.  I have a 4 X 8 and a 5 X 10.  I pull both behind my big tractor and my lawn tractor on occasion.  Not a bad deal and you get to customize to your needs.

http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_47661_47661

Regards,

Jim

10
General Discussion / Re: Raised Beds
« on: July 29, 2016, 08:59:12 AM »
We spent a lot of time researching types of lumber etc to use when making raised beds because we are organic.  We ended up making some from rough sawn white oak from the local Amish mill.  That sounds expensive but from them it was cheaper than using pine. 

Since then I have taken to using old metal stock tanks.  Seems every farm around here has one or two or three leaky ones rusting away in the pasture or field.  So far I have not had to pay for any of them.  I fill them (after making sure they leak, 12 ga slugs are good for this) with compost, and on top I use some ProMix bags (expensive but worth it.)  The key is the soil (as everyone has said).  I use pelleted chicken manure (organic) for fertilizer along with compost. 

We now have probably 10 or 12 stock tank raised-bed gardens and we plant mostly herbs, kale, carrots, lettuce, spinach and radishes.  I have found that being able to control the soil type (my fields are heavy clay) is the key to growing whatever you want. 

Our tanks are not pretty . . .they are away from the house, behind the barn, but they give me great production, many fewer bugs and pests and are rabbit proof.  It looks like next year because of them I will be able to lay off a 3/4 acre garden to give it a rest and rebuild the soil. 

Raised beds are a great tool!! 

Regards,

Jim

11
General Discussion / Re: I'm Done With Brassica
« on: July 29, 2016, 08:34:16 AM »
I've not transplanted beets, although for the reasons you cite I am interested in doing so.  Just never had any experience doing that here.  Probably will try so I can use corn gluten on those rows too. 

It seems like your weed problem is extreme . . .somewhat unusual I think.  Ours is bad . . .but each year we seem to get some areas with fewer weeds (don't ask why) but our thistle issues are huge.

I'm going to transplant some beets!

Regards,

Jim

12
General Discussion / Re: I'm Done With Brassica
« on: July 28, 2016, 05:36:06 PM »
I'm not sure this will help, but to commiserate . . .we are in the same boat.  Crops are growing wonderfully this year . . .and the weeds even better.  I smiled when I saw your weed pictures because my fields look just the same.  I use corn gluten where I can, rotate crops where I can . .lay fields off for a year where I can . ..and use plant/skip where I can.  That requires a lot of soil building because it's hell on the soil structure . . .but, it's also hell on the weeds. 

As I tell my customers, in July we are slaves to the hoe . . .trying desperately to keep the weeds down between the plants in the rows.  Every year it is a slow loss of the battle as the weeds win over by the end of the season.   Every year we face a new weed/pest problem on plants that the year before were perfectly fine.  Every year we try desperately to find new solutions that will work for us.  I'm convinced that for us, this is a normal process . . .as organic farmers we don't have any better answers . . .Although I search around the world constantly for some . . .

Keep the faith . .. you are doing fine.

Regards,

Jim



13
Market Gardens / Re: Cheap walk in cooler
« on: July 05, 2016, 08:14:49 PM »
We had exact same idea a few years back. Never followed through. Great job BTW!

Thank you,

It works really nice.

Regards,

Jim

14
Market Gardens / Re: Cheap walk in cooler
« on: July 05, 2016, 12:23:58 PM »
I'm late to the party again but this may help someone. 

Last summer I picked up an enclosed trailer (5 X 10) that was used and pretty well beat up.  It was a Haulmark brand however and that means it's quality.  I took it down to AZ and worked all winter on  it to make it into a Cooler Trailer with a 12,000 BTU AC and Coolbot. 

I installed 4" of foam on the walls, ceiling and floor as well as the swinging door. I lined it with 1/4 inch plywood on the walls and ceiling, 3/8 on the floor.    I cut a big hole and installed the A/C unit in the front end and installed a standard electric box with a pass through and outdoor marine plug in.  I then caulked all the seams and cracks and used a whole gallon of Kilz paint on the inside and then a whole gallon of porch and floor paint over that.  (I also fixed the hole in the roof from a tree branch, installed new tires, repacked the bearings and sanded and repainted the trailer frame.)
Lastly, when all that was done I installed the CoolBot unit (easy) and had a local artist put our farm logo on the exterior.

Then we pulled it back to Wisconsin and set it up next to our farm stand.  I bought wire metal shelves and screwed them to the inside. 

I had a bunch of photos but lost them when my computer bit the dust.  Here are a few I salvaged. 

A couple of notes:  Using 2" rigid foam ($20 per 4x8) was the cheapest way to insulate.  I used cans of spray foam to fill cracks and seams.  I found the niftiest thing to make cutting foam easy, a Hot Knife from Harbor Freight.  Finding 4" and 5" screws to install the foam was a pain.  And expensive.  I added big tie down eyes in the four corners so I could use the trailer for other things too if necessary.  If one wanted to spend more $$ and less time I would recommend having someone spray foam the interior with 4" of foam.  Or buy one of those kits and do it yourself.  Getting the foam on the ceiling was the most difficult part of the entire project.

So, how does it work???   FANTASTIC. 

I just put 25 heads of cabbage inside and it is 42*, right where I set it.  I cannot say how nice this will be to finally have refrigerator space!  We decided on a trailer rather than a walk-in because we can take it to the Farmer's Market, and even to the field when we harvest. 

All in All I have about 1900$ in the build with $500 being the trailer purchise and $200 for new tires.

Regards,

Jim


 

15
Market Gardens / Re: Does anyone grow Edamame for market?
« on: July 05, 2016, 11:49:46 AM »
James,

I grow the BeSweet292 Edamame but only for personal consumption. I don't sell at the market. My wife and I love Edamame and had a big bowl of it last night. Makes for a healthy snack. We have a large Asian population in Houston which is nearby us but I have never seen any for sale at any of the markets I shop at. I bet it would be a good seller.

I'm going to give it a try.

Jim

16
Market Gardens / Re: Does anyone grow Edamame for market?
« on: July 05, 2016, 11:29:38 AM »
Had to look it up. Never heard of it before.
I'm with Corl on what sells. Something might be a big hit now and a bust later on even if it is regionally popular.

Soybeans, they are just damn soybeans. 

If you ever go to a Japanese restaurant that serves sushi they give you a big bowl of them steamed in the shell as an appetizer . . .actually pretty good.  So lots of young people and Asians love them.

Our town has a big hippy population so I think they might sell . . . .

Regards,

Jim

17
Market Gardens / Re: Does anyone grow Edamame for market?
« on: July 05, 2016, 10:40:19 AM »
Yes!  Just no demand. I wish I knew what people want to buy. Some days/years some thing sell and then again they don't. Last year I couldn't grow enough cabbage. This year I tilled lots under because of no sales. Grew the same amount each year.

Yeah, I hear you.  The marketing part of this business is the hard part for me.  I used to think that growing stuff is the hard part . . .now that I have that down (took 3-4 years and still learning) I find figuring out what to plant, how much and who wants what is a big deal.

I think I will try some edamame next year and see how it goes.

Regards,

Jim

18
Market Gardens / Re: Does anyone grow Edamame for market?
« on: July 05, 2016, 09:33:04 AM »
I grew it and tried to sell it for 2 years. Sales were a bust. Even worse than PEPHP which I still grow and sell a few.


Do you think it didn't sell because people didn't know what it was and what to do with it or they just don't want it in your area?

I think there would be a demand for it here in SW Wisconsin.

Regards,

jim

19
Market Gardens / Does anyone grow Edamame for market?
« on: July 04, 2016, 09:45:33 AM »
I'm thinking about growing edamame for our farm stand and farmer's market because there seems to be a demand for it.  I checked our July 4 market (yesterday) and no one grows it.

Up to now I stayed away from it because my fields are sandwiched between my neighbor's large fields that he rotates corn/soybeans yearly.  Now, however I have access to fields away from that possible contamination. 

Our local organic co-op imports their  edamame and it sells pretty well.  I'm wondering if anyone here grows/sells it.

Regards,

Jim

20
General Discussion / Re: Where to buy 1020 trays and inserts cheap?
« on: January 08, 2016, 12:48:03 PM »
Excellent!  Thank you guys, you are a lifesaver.

Regards,

Jim

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