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3 minutes ago, TicTac said:

epson salts for end-rot?  Interesting - what is the application process?

 

Love the gardening knowledge you folks are able to share!!!

 

I think epsom salt for blossom end rot is an old wives' tale.  I use gypsum myself.  But I'd love to hear how epsom does in the @kayb field trials.

 

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2 hours ago, TicTac said:

epson salts for end-rot?  Interesting - what is the application process?

 

Love the gardening knowledge you folks are able to share!!!

 

They have magnesium and calcium, a lack of either of which will, allegedly, cause blossom end rot. Cheap and easy to find.

 

I put about a quarter cup a couple of inches away from the base of each plant, and water it in.

 

Worked last year.

 

Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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According to Dr. Carolyn Male (tomato goddess):

carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Yes, I'm here and I'm going to again cut and paste what I wrote before and call your attention to the paragraph below that starts with the sentence..... the old information about BER...... b'c that's the crux of the problem. That is, you'll find some University sites and some private sites and many other sites who still maintain that the single cause of BER is lack of soil Ca++ and don't mention anything else, which is why in that paragraph I said that the old info is going to take at least another generation before the correct info is found almost everywhere.

******

Here's my cut and paste again.

(With BER there is NO problem with absorption of Ca++ though the roots. The problem is maldistribution within the plant that can be induced by a number of stresses which include uneven delivery of water, too much N, growing in too rich soil, too hot, too cold, too wet, too dry you name it.
As the plants mature they can better handle the streses that can induce BER so usually it goes away.

The two exceptions are first, if the soil has NO Ca++ as confirmed with a soil test, and that's a rare condition, and second, if the soil is too acidic in which Case Ca++ is bound in the soil.

Again, adding lime, egg shells and on and on can not and will not prevent BER b'c absorption of Ca++ thru the roots is OK.

Paste tomatoes are especially susceptible to BER and I think someone in a post above mentioned that.

If you go to the top of this first page and click on the FAQ link and scroll down you'll also find an article about BER in case some of you have never looked at the FAQ's And there's some darn good articles there as well, but I wouldn't pay any attention to the variety list b'c it's way out of date.

The old information about BER being caused solely by lack of soil Ca++ has been shown to be wrong with research that's been done in the last 20 years or so, but it's going to take another generation before the real story gets into books, websites, magazines, etc. Most of the better websites already have the correct information.

BER affects not only tomatoes, but peppers, squash, cabbage, cauliflower, etc., and it's a huge multimillion dollar problem for the industry, which is WHY all that reasearch was done. For instance, when tissues were taken from a plant that has BER fruits and was assayed for Ca++, the normal level of Ca++ was found, it just wasn't getting to the blossom end of fruits. And there's also a condition called internal BER where the fruits look fine, no evidence of BER externally, but when you cut open the fruit the inside is black

Hope that helps

Betsy had added at the end of my article the following, with which I agree.

(So, what it comes down too is: Tums do not work, nor do egg shells, milk, and other "home remedy" treatments. Foliar spray only works in some cases. Time and good management practices work best.)

So, you can believe what I wrote above, or noting what I said about wrong or incomplete information still being out there and make up your own collective minds about BER by doing as much online research as I have in the past 20 years or so. ( smile)

Carolyn

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@dcarch great post - so glad you did that. That is the big misconception about BER, the lack of calcium but it really is a distribution problem. I had the same problem with my hydro tomato and my nutrient mix was just fine.

 

Here's hoping I dont get it or tip burn on my strawberries!

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I had a terrible time last year with Baltimore Orioles pecking holes in my ripening tomatoes, then teaching their young to do the same. This year, probably a month before I expected, I have tomatoes that are getting ripe. I had plans to erect a house of netting around the whole thing, but thought I had weeks to spare. In the mean time, I now wrap the ripening tomatoes in wet paper towels, to hide them from the birds.

On another note, in years past, I would always see honey bees working the flowers in the garden, but not this year. I have also noted that the zucchini are not producing well. About half the little squash just wither and drop off without ever being pollinated.

HC

Edited by HungryChris (log)
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When natural pollinators aren't getting it done, you can hand-pollinate with a small paintbrush. It's a time-consuming PITA (best done in the morning, before it gets too hot out) but it'll crank up your zucchini production.

 

...and we all know how dear to your heart those morning zuc's are. :)

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“What is called sound economics is very often what mirrors the needs of the respectably affluent.” - John Kenneth Galbraith

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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6 hours ago, HungryChris said:

I had a terrible time last year with Baltimore Orioles pecking holes in my ripening tomatoes, then teaching their young to do the same. This year, probably a month before I expected, I have tomatoes that are getting ripe. I had plans to erect a house of netting around the whole thing, but thought I had weeks to spare. In the mean time, I now wrap the ripening tomatoes in wet paper towels, to hide them from the birds.

On another note, in years past, I would always see honey bees working the flowers in the garden, but not this year. I have also noted that the zucchini are not producing well. About half the little squash just wither and drop off without ever being pollinated.

HC

 

That's a great idea--using the wet paper towels.

 

We've had a couple of our zuke plants completely give up and die.  A couple have made a come back.  More seeds have been planted so we'll see if we can get a second wave going on.  Some of our squash are doing the same thing--rotting off.  Frustrating.

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1 minute ago, dcarch said:

The Art of growing Chokes

 

Yes, finally, after trying a few years in zone 6. Very encouraging, it's only the beginning of July.

 

dcarch891983112_artichoke2018b.thumb.jpg.92457df28850adc1c3b09b4bfd210be3.jpg17656839_artichoke2018a.thumb.jpg.6bf8ed942a9b4f44a1e6a8801939bd21.jpg710313800_artichoke2018.thumb.jpg.de48af1eef0764651aa78c4e55b23455.jpg

 

 

Oh nice!

 

Last year mine looked just like that, minus the artichoke, all summer long.  I gave up.

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6 hours ago, chromedome said:

When natural pollinators aren't getting it done, you can hand-pollinate with a small paintbrush. It's a time-consuming PITA (best done in the morning, before it gets too hot out) but it'll crank up your zucchini production.

 

...and we all know how dear to your heart those morning zuc's are. :)

I will definitely be giving it a try.

HC

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Deb went clamming with me this morning and we made out pretty well, by "raking in" about six dozen. The day got even better after we got home: Today we celebrated "FTD" (First Tomato Day), better, still, we celebrated with a Three Bagger!!!

HC

IMG_1229.thumb.JPG.ab6d95e949402d9a60f6a8ae03259003.JPG

Edited by HungryChris (log)
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Hot weather has not been helping my tomatoes.  Particularly the plant closest to the air conditioner exhaust.  More than a few flowers have turned brown and died.  Still no sign of red.

 

My blueberries are all stripped except for the branches I wrapped in frost cover and kept well sprayed.  Did I ever mention I hate birds?  According to the NY Times the secret to sweet blueberries is to leave them on the bush a few extra days after they have ripened.  Really.  I wouldn't know.

 

Also I tried tying up my poor cosmos.  They look pitiful.  Next year perhaps I'll plant them with some support.

 

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12 hours ago, Shelby said:

Oh nice!

 

Last year mine looked just like that, minus the artichoke, all summer long.  I gave up.

 

10 hours ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

 

Same experience here.  Quite a disappointment.

 

 

1. Select the best variety for your zone.

2. Start seedling early.

3. The seedling needs to go thru a fake winter. To set their buds, artichokes need a period of vernalization, at least two weeks of cold temperatures below 50°F, but not freezing.

 

dcarch

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I’ve really enjoyed catching up with your gardening exploits.  For the first time in years I have some ‘free’ time and this coincides with a mini heatwave in North Yorkshire.  First run of summer days with blue skies for around 3 years! .

 

You all seem well ahead of us in terms of gardens.  We have plenty of salads and herbs to eat but attempts to get other stuff started in good time didn’t succeed and it is too soon here for tomatoes to be ripe.  There are plenty coming on so we look forward to those.

 

Strawberries usually do well here.  Plenty of berries were produced and we netted the raised bed as usual.  We must have netted some kind of beast in there with the plants because the vast majority were eaten for us.  I have no idea by what.  Certainly no birds caught in the netting and the damage was far too extensive for the usual slug or snail that gets to the plants.  The only thing I saw was a toad, I suspect he or she lives between our raised bed and the neighbour’s fence but research didn’t confirm that toads like strawberries so I’m at a loss really.  We were so disappointed being both strawberry lovers.

 

On a happier note raspberries are now ripening.  We don’t have many and we don’t net because birds haven’t shown much interest in the past.  There are also lots of blackberries to look forward to, and gooseberries.

 

We are trying Romanesco for the first time.  Lots of leaves but as yet no sign of any centres forming.  These are very much an experiment so we wait and see, checking often to ensure no caterpillars installing themselves.  I like to mix flowers and veg, below is a pot with Romanesco, Coriander and some lobelia for colour.  Taken last week I think.

 

432A96C4-5117-4AD5-BF2D-FB833B40F1E8.thumb.jpeg.d5822f7df870d1ebe80d5484de4284d4.jpeg

 

Salads in baskets, spring onions in the trough on top of the gas bottles.  Apparently we can’t enclose the bottles...

D5377ED9-1817-4E91-BBA3-83F491C65123.thumb.jpeg.fcc8d69546d5dcdce0ce8a762ac66d6c.jpeg

 

It looks as though ugh this was taken before I replanted the basket closest to the window and we had eaten the first lot of lettuce.  The far basket has oak leaf lettuces still.

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5 minutes ago, DianaB said:

Salads in baskets, spring onions in the trough on top of the gas bottles.  Apparently we can’t enclose the bottles...

 D5377ED9-1817-4E91-BBA3-83F491C65123.thumb.jpeg.fcc8d69546d5dcdce0ce8a762ac66d6c.jpeg

 

It looks as though ugh this was taken before I replanted the basket closest to the window and we had eaten the first lot of lettuce.  The far basket has oak leaf lettuces still.

 

Is that a laurel / bay bush in the lower left of the photo? 

 

I like the idea of salads in baskets. The lobelia for color is a nice touch.

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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9 hours ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

 

What variety of tomato do you grow that ripens fruit so early?

 

This is pretty unusual for here, but I did buy individual tomato plants in mid-May and picked particular plants because they already had little tomatoes on them. The largest and smallest are from a plant variety called Mountain Fresh and the middle sized one is from a container plant called Better Bush. The latter is a variety developed by Bonnie Plants and was a gift to Deb from that company, which is a regular customer at the truck shop where she works. It too had small tomatoes on it when she got it. I took a chance planting my plants in the ground as early as I did, but it happened to pay off this year. The only plants I started from seed are Burpee Fourth Of July Hybrid and, like last year, are the least advanced of the lot.

HC

 

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1 hour ago, DianaB said:

I’ve really enjoyed catching up with your gardening exploits.  For the first time in years I have some ‘free’ time and this coincides with a mini heatwave in North Yorkshire.  First run of summer days with blue skies for around 3 years! .

 

You all seem well ahead of us in terms of gardens.  We have plenty of salads and herbs to eat but attempts to get other stuff started in good time didn’t succeed and it is too soon here for tomatoes to be ripe.  There are plenty coming on so we look forward to those.

 

Strawberries usually do well here.  Plenty of berries were produced and we netted the raised bed as usual.  We must have netted some kind of beast in there with the plants because the vast majority were eaten for us.  I have no idea by what.  Certainly no birds caught in the netting and the damage was far too extensive for the usual slug or snail that gets to the plants.  The only thing I saw was a toad, I suspect he or she lives between our raised bed and the neighbour’s fence but research didn’t confirm that toads like strawberries so I’m at a loss really.  We were so disappointed being both strawberry lovers.

 

On a happier note raspberries are now ripening.  We don’t have many and we don’t net because birds haven’t shown much interest in the past.  There are also lots of blackberries to look forward to, and gooseberries.

 

We are trying Romanesco for the first time.  Lots of leaves but as yet no sign of any centres forming.  These are very much an experiment so we wait and see, checking often to ensure no caterpillars installing themselves.  I like to mix flowers and veg, below is a pot with Romanesco, Coriander and some lobelia for colour.  Taken last week I think.

 

432A96C4-5117-4AD5-BF2D-FB833B40F1E8.thumb.jpeg.d5822f7df870d1ebe80d5484de4284d4.jpeg

 

Salads in baskets, spring onions in the trough on top of the gas bottles.  Apparently we can’t enclose the bottles...

D5377ED9-1817-4E91-BBA3-83F491C65123.thumb.jpeg.fcc8d69546d5dcdce0ce8a762ac66d6c.jpeg

 

It looks as though ugh this was taken before I replanted the basket closest to the window and we had eaten the first lot of lettuce.  The far basket has oak leaf lettuces still.

BEAUTIFUL!

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A week after our monsoon season ended and temperatures rocketed up past 30C (into the 90sF), I am seeing buds on my snake beans ...cool and rainy today, tough, so not sure if they will set fruit or not. I love snake beans, because pests rarely bother them enough to actually destroy a plant or its harvest.

Several of my bitter gourds are almost big enough to harvest, and even in the Deepest Darkest Shade where my vege planters are, a few enterprising tomatoes have actually managed to ripen. Zucchini are just lolling round wasting space, meanwhile...

With high temps, life is getting hard for my container-grown silverbeet though. There seemed to be enough parsley for the plant to grow good seed, so I hadn't the heart to remove the numerous swallowtail caterpillars - I could actually see this guy's jaws moving!
 

IMG_20180627_093526.jpg

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