I'm testing in a couple of very large pots and so far so good, but I didn't over do the wood in the bottom-less than a foots worth. I soaked the wood and it was dead dry stuff so I'm sure breaking down quickly in my Florida heat. Kicking around trying it on a smaller scale in a 10" pot with greens this fall. If you haven't found him yet, check out "Home Grown Veg" on you tube. He's in the UK and grows almost everything in containers. Entertaining gentleman and he's led me to try things in pots I never thought of. The plastic tend to dry out much quicker here than clay, but I do think the wood is helping in those pots.
Being able to harvest enough pole beans for dinner tonight knowing they won't be producing much longer. Walking past the cow peas and seeing they are coming on so can soon take the place of the snap beans. Life is good.
Florida here as well. Interesting thread since I haven't been able to grow a viable squash since I moved out of Ohio. Even my Seminole pumpkin experiment failed. I have pollinators, but they bypass my vegetables for the tons of spiderwort that is growing on our suburban lot. I have a flowering tree of some sort-I suspect it's an invasive privet- and the bees are all over it early spring and then they disappear. I planted patty pan surrounded by nasturtium, cosmos and Florida cranberry this spring. Saw ants on the flowers, but no bees and got no fruit. Guess if I try again this fall I'll have to hand pollinate. Pretty much the same deal with cukes, although my first garden here I did get a few.
Really enjoying the summit. Just watched Paul's hugelkulter presentation and it was helpful and entertaining as always. I am glad I purchased lifetime access since this week was busy and I've only had time for one or two presenters a day. I'm now wondering if a couple hugel beds in our backyard would help conceal a pen for a few laying hens with the bonus of more garden space up off of the pine needle covered surface. Hmmmm....
Yes, I would consider trying a batch of radishes (started in cool weather weather of course....may not be good to try this in Florida summer...)
Yes I'm already transitioning from winter to spring/summer. Not that we had much of a winter the past two years. Beautiful huge broccoli plants and they wanted to bolt as soon as they started forming heads because of the heat. I've harvested some, but not as much as I had hoped. They are about to get the chop and drop treatment.
Good idea on taking to the extension service. The first year I grew them in a container I got a few. Skipped a season because my back was bad and this season just in the ground so maybe a disease. I have some in partial shade now with a curled kale plant and a couple cabbage plants that probably won't produce. It's an experiment I started about 8 weeks ago to see if I can extend my season in the shady part of the garden. I should have added chard in there since I love it, but didn't think about it at the time.
One thing like R Ranson mentioned- failures give you food for thought on how to plan for the future garden. As I have the money I'm buying more sub tropical edible perennials to replace some of the "normal" vegetables that are just really tough here like broccoli.
Kristi, is it fair to say that you've always had some source of local soil mixed in with your amended mix in your planter boxes?
Yes it is. I buy organic, but do try to limit the trucking distance so a lot of the product comes from Georgia. Which it's still southern, but they have clay up there unlike here where it truly is just sand. Maybe I should do a Miracle Gro soil bucket and see what happens? Others have told me I should just give up the organic thing and hit my veggies with Miracle Gro to improve yield since gardening in Florida is a lot different than it was in Ohio. I could try it with the radishes in a container and see what happens.
Yep. I've succession planted from late October right through March. Doesn't seem to matter. The only thing I can guess is that the soil is just too amended for them giving me more greens than roots. Since it's nothing but sand here, all of our dirt has been brought in and I'm constantly composting into the raised beds. Maybe I should fill a container with sand and give it a try!
No photos, but I cannot succeed with the easiest veg out there. Radishes. I can grow almost anything from seed-tomatoes, eggplant, peppers..you name it. Radishes get tops, but hardly ever a bulb to be seen. I can even grow Rat Tailed Radish, but not the traditional. I've tried containers, in the ground full sun, part shade. Compost, no compost, square foot garden spacing, rows, bio-intensive. I'm a radish failure.
Yes I have had some kale plants last through the summer. This year I purposefully planted some in a partially shaded area of my garden to see if I can get a decent harvest from them year-round. They say you can do that with collards as well, but I haven't tried that yet. I put 1 kale plant per square foot, but I'm thinking I could fit 2 in a square and will be trying that next year. I did plant herbs and carrots in between plants which worked. Chard could also possibly be something if given a little shade could go quite awhile since it is like kale and you cut the outer leaves and they grow new ones.
I'm in zone 9b-Florida. We get a substantial amount of yearly rainfall, but most of it comes in the middle of summer. Hot, humid Florida summer doesn't equal good gardening. Our best growing season is late fall through early spring. I can't count 10 days I've seen rain since mid October. I'm just venturing into the world of permaculture, but have grown vegetables for the last 4 years. Very steep learning curve in the sandy soil here.
My successes have been pigeon peas, Florida cranberry Roselle, moringa, hot peppers, callaloo-Jamaican amaranth grown for its greens, cow peas, okra, kale, chard, lettuce, kohlrabi, mustard, collards, carrots, turnips, beets, radish, beans, sweet potatoes and peas. I've had limited success with tomatoes, eggplant, cukes, squash and melons. It has taken 4 years to get the soil built up to where it isn't constant work. I'm sure someone with a bigger budget could get it done faster. Composting in place in raised beds has done the most good.
Right now we are harvesting around 70 percent of our veggie intake, but we are also meat eaters.
Good Luck on your new venture. We don't have enough land for a food forest so that would be on my wish list if starting over. Lots of fruit trees to choose from in this zone if you have the room.
Pigeon peas are nitrogen fixers and last several years. You can eat the green pods or allow to dry. Moringa will freeze to the ground, but come back. I'm experimenting with amaranth (for seeds), Malabar spinach and ground cherries this spring.
I agree with others who mentioned David the Good. He has a couple good books specific to Florida gardening.