Buddy Garden Container Gardening photos, tips, highlights, recipes, tools review.

18May/092

Earthbox planting instructions

The weather has been hovering around 70F and that means it's time to plant vegetables! This year I'm going to grow Japanese Eggplants, Sprite Tomatoes, and Siberian Tomatoes.  If you remember this is the first year I'm using the Earthbox to grow vegetables.  I've read many good things about it and would like to try it myself.  To determine what vegetables to grow and where to place the seedlings, refer to the Earthbox website.  I'm growing two eggplants in one, and two tomato plants in another.

Ingredients

  • Earthbox Garden Kit (includes one EarthBox, one aeration screen, one water fill tube, two fitted covers, four casters, 16 oz 7-7-7 plant food, and 16 oz dolomite)
  • 2 cu.ft Organic potting mix (you can use any potting mix but I used Miracle Grow Organic Choice)

Steps

1. The Earthbox Garden Kit includes one EarthBox, one aeration screen, one water fill tube, two fitted covers, four casters, 16 oz 7-7-7 plant food, and 16 oz dolomite.

2. Install the four casters to the bottom of the EarthBox.  This is optional but it gives you the ability to move the Earthbox around, it gets really heavy when you fill it with almost 2 cu.ft of potting mix!

3. Set the plastic aeration screen firmly to the bottom.  Attach the fill tube and press it firmly to the round cutout in the corner of the screen.

4. Pack the two corner cutouts in the screen with moist potting mix.  It's important to pack it firmly because this is how the plants get water.  It's okay if you let some of the potting mix fall through the screen.

5. Continue adding potting mix until it reaches the top 2-3 inches of the pot.

6. Sprinkle the dolomite on top of the potting mix.

7. Mix the dolomite with the top 3 inches of the potting mix.

8. Add some more potting mix to cover the dolomite.

9. Create a small trough and then pour the dry fertilizer in a strip.  The location of the fertilizer varies, refer to the placements guide.  Cover the trough with moist potting mix and pat down.  Do not mix the fertilizer.

10 & 11.  Add some more potting mix until it is about 2 inches above the rim of the box. Align one of the round cutout holes over the fill tube and carefully stretch the cover over the top of the EarthBox.

12. Plan where you want to place the seedlings (refer to the placements guide).  In this case, I'm planting two japanese eggplants.

13. Cut and "X" in the cover for each plant.  The "X" should be the size of the rootball.

14. The eggplant in its place.  Water through the tube until water comes out of the overflow spout.  

15. This is the other Earthbox I planted with Sprite tomotoes on the left, and Siberian tomatoes on the right.

That's it! Just make sure it gets 6-8 hours of full sun.  If everything goes well, all it needs is water for the whole season!

23Sep/085

Organic garden pests control

Only recently did I know that praying mantis can control pests in the garden.  So I did a little research about them.  They love pests such as flies, crickets, moths, and mosquitoes.  But beware that they also consume other beneficial insects (including each other!).  They are insects eating machine, their front legs are like a claw with sharp edges that can catch and hold its prey.  You can buy praying mantis and put them to work as a pesticide, what a biological natural way to control pests.  They are interesting insects and wonderful to watch.

I found a big one at work today:

11Sep/082

Spiders and me

It's spiders season and I hate hate hate spiders.  I know spiders are good bugs but they just freak me out.  Fall is the season when spiders come out to mate and die.  If you look around the house and your garden, you'll begin to see more spider webs and a big fat spider will hang in the middle of the web.

I try to ignore them as long as they don't startle me.  The smaller house spiders don't scare me as much but those that hang around in the garden are big! Usually I leave the small spiders alone because they are good bugs for the garden, but when Fall comes, the big ones come out to haunt me.  Don't you hate it when you run into spider webs?   

I was doing some gardening work on the deck and my husband pointed out to me that my 'favorite' creature is back! I was not happy when I saw it, I knew spider season is back.  I literally had goosebumps.  I'm beginning to think I have a condition called Arachnophobia.  My husband tells me the only way to conquer the fear is to face the fear, so he said maybe I should just let the spider crawl up my arm.  (YEAH RIGHT!!)

Here's a picture of it hanging in mid-air.  No I was not standing as close as you think, I was brave enough to take this picture because I had a long zoom lens on my camera.

At the beginning of the season I used this bug spray around my deck and it seems to be doing a good job.  At least this was the only spider I've seen so far, it was worst last year.

Don't make fun of me but I have these spider traps inside the house.  :-)

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