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Organic vegetable containers examination

 
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Location: Bay Area CA zone 9
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Just looked at the roots of 6 vegetable containers that I used different organic soil mixes in.
It's quite interesting, I've been using branches, stumps, leaves and compost in different arrangements to see
what grows best.

http://lowcostvegetablegarden.blogspot.com/2012/09/eggplant-stump-branch-pot-comparison.html

http://lowcostvegetablegarden.blogspot.com/2012/09/pepper-containers.html


 
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Love this. It's such a good way for people to document their systematic experiments in growing and share there results!

Stump vs. branches type hugelkultur. Definitely inspiration for container gardening. Thank you for sharing, come back and post more!
 
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Currently I have to grow in containers, and I've read that after two years I must dump the soil out of the annuals' pots and put in new soil for new plants the next growing season. (Is this true, by the way? Or part of a marketing plot on the part of the soil companies?) Anyway, I did that last fall. My plants' roots were densely interwoven in the soil, and I dumped all the soil from the buckets in a low spot in the yard where water always puddled on the thick clay soil. In the spring I spread wildflower seeds all over the spread-roots-and -soil area, wondering what would happen to the new plants there (flowers) when they sprouted.

The new plants actually did not do so well there, perhaps because of nutrient deficiency of the used soil? But the kale roots in it didn't ever die, and a lot of it regrew out in the lawn. Many happy "weeds" colonized the area, also. I plan to mow it all down in the autumn, and try wildflowers again in the next Spring.

But back to containers--it seems they have to be big, at least 5 gallons, and heavily fertilized to grow eatable produce. I've got to figure out how to do this cheaper if I'm going to be replacing soil so frequently.
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