They have a soil thermometer that will be used to determine when the soil is warm enough to plant. It is used like a meat thermometer, being pushed into the ground all the way. This thermometer has different plants listed on it and what the temperature requirements are for each plant.
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Wall O Water
To warm and prepare areas for earlier planting, Don sets up his Wall o Waters. These particular ones are where he will plant his peppers. He will be doing the same for his tomatoes. To begin, set up a 5 gallon bucket and open a Wall o Water around the outside of the bucket. Open each of the cells in the Wall o Water and fill them ½ to ¾ full. Place in the garden area where you want to help warm up the soil for planting. Spread the bottom area in a wide circle and pull the top of the cells together to close off the top. It will take approximately a couple of weeks for the ground to get warm enough then he will plant his peppers inside the Wall o Waters. As the plants begin to grow, fill the cells in the Wall o Waters up the rest of the way and open the top up. These Wall o Waters can be reused for 6 to 10 years. The red ones are supposedly better than the green ones; however, he doesn’t know for sure if this is true.
Cucumbers and overall shots
The fence for these is intentionally at a slant. The vines of the cucumber climb the fence, and as they grow, the cucumbers hang down from the backside of the fence making them very easy to find and pick. The fencing is Red Top or Horse Field Wire. The holes are 6” x 7” square. They usually grow Armenian cucumbers but it should work for any kind. They are experimenting with a brown plastic where the cucumbers will be planted to see if it works as well to warm the soil as the black. Stepping-stones throughout the garden areas are used to make it easier to move through the different vegetables.
Parsnips, Grape, and Roma Tomatoes
The center section of this garden plot will be parsnips. You can see parts of the soaker hoses that run through the area. The third section of this bed will be the Roma Tomatoes. The plastic is there to try to warm the soil so that they can be planted sooner. The stakes coming out of the ground show where each plant with be put.
Regular Tomatoes and Carrots
The next section of the garden will be regular tomatoes (with one cherry tomato plant on the end). These also have the plastic to warm the soil. The cages for these tomatoes will be 4 feet tall. Wall-o-waters will also be used here to protect the plants as they become established. Carrots will be planted along this area in front of the tomatoes.
Because of the Tomato Wilt, Don is treating his tomatoes with the Colloidal Silver. This is used for bacterial, fungal and viral diseases in plants and animals. Colloidal Silver was used before penicillin came into use. There is no residue and it is not harmful in any way. The Colloidal Silver Generator can be found on line and usually costs around $50 to $60. You use distilled water with the generator. The silver rods are attached to the base and submerged into the jar of distilled water. Silver dissolves from the rods into the water. The water is stored in dark brown bottles. This can then be used to mix a spray to mist onto the tomato plants to help get rid of the Tomato Wilt.
Cantaloupe and Watermelon
The areas of plastic in this section are warming the soil for the cantaloupe and watermelon plants. They need lots of room to spread so they are planted quite far apart. You can see on the closest section where the soaker hoses go into the ground for the watering. The wood stakes are showing where each plant is to be placed. They show where the rich compost has been set for each plant.
Blackberries will be the back section of this part of the garden. The supports are made from tall metal fence posts with three wooden cross bars going up each post and plastic Baling twine looping from cross bar to cross bar along the row at each of the three levels.
Peas and Pumpkins
In this section, at the back of the south side of the garden, peas will be planted in front of the fence. The peas will be able to climb the fence to make it easier to find the peas and pick them. Pumpkins will be planted in the front plastic areas where they will have room to spread. Note the paving stones to make it easier to maneuver through the section.
Green Beans and Corn
This section will have the green beans planted in front of the fence where they can climb. A row of corn will be planted along the front of the section.
These will be orange, yellow and red peppers. The flags show where the compost is placed for each pepper plant. They dry the peppers for later use after they are harvested.
Asparagus, Green Onions, Garlic, and Carrots
This next section has been divided. The front section has established plants that come up each year. The remainder of the section will be planted with onions and carrots.
Lettuce and Beets
This section will contain the lettuce and beets. Established blackberry bushes are shown at the back.
Acorn and Zucchini Squash
At the end of the tomato row, this section will be for the Acorn and Zucchini squashes. They are bushy plants and will have cages placed around them to confine them and help them to grow up and not out.
They have two turkey fig trees planted at the northwest corner of their garden. These have been covered with insulation and black plastic to protect them until the freezes are over. This is an experiment.