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Corn cultivars and other tall plants that can stand drought

 
Posts: 157
Location: North of France
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forest garden bike bee
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Hi,

as I can't water one of the greenhouses I work in for 3 weeks during August (it's at work), the crops at the center of the greenhouse die.
The other crops do well because the water is next to the "walls" of the greenhouse when it rains.
I thought of using drought-tolerant plants in the middle, so that everything won't be dead when I come back three weeks later.
Pigeon pea and vigna unguiculata seem to be quite drought tolerant, but I'm thinking of using corn as stake for those plants.

For the time being, I found 'Oaxacan green', 'mccormack', and 'hopi pink flour'.

Any other idea of corn cultivar or of a big "vegetable" that can stand the drought (amaranth)?

Thanks.
 
pollinator
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Jerusalem artichokes.

How about fig trees? You can keep them as small as you want.
 
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Location: Oakland, CA
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fungi trees chicken
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Sorghum could work well as a sort of living stake, but make sure to space out the plants so you do not have to much competition.
 
André Troylilas
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forest garden bike bee
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Thanks for the suggestions. I already grow Jerusalem artichokes, but didn't know they could stand the drought. I harvested them today by the way. That sounds like a good idea.
Rearding the sorghum, I read they could have an allelopathic effect on other plants, still have to investigate on that.
As for the fig trees, why not, I have quite a lot of fig tree cuttings to do (within a water bottle).
 
steward
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André: Is there any possibility of hiring a local kid to water the greenhouse in your absence?

 
pollinator
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hugelkultur dog books urban greening the desert
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I will also say juruselam artichokes. But they are a mess, spread like hell. Blue corn, or hopi corn, might be another option. It doesn't get as high as regular corn but uses a lot less water and has higher protein levels (of course this is important if you are raising chicken)

I had a similar problem, certain times in a year I have to leave them up to 2-3 weeks, and plants that are about to set flowers just die. After reading Bainbridges book, gardening with less water, I started to use ollas. For plants like peppers they work just as good as it gets. With a lid, a correct sized olla ( or clay pots in the same manner) can hold the situation up to 2-3 weeks. If I'm late and come back in 3-4 weeks plants do suffer a bit, but they are alive and already fruiting
I never tried but a plastic reservoir over the olla or porous capsule might also work. Also a wick system with a reservour (fiber wick), like given in page 50 or 55 (if Im remembering correctly) might me another and cheaper solution.
Hope it helps!
 
André Troylilas
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forest garden bike bee
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Joseph, the greenhouse is in an enclosed plot of land that belongs to the company I work for. You can't enter the plot if you're not part of the company.
I asked to some colleagues, but they forget to water the plants after some time.
Regarding the Hopi, I would love to grow some, but am afraid that my warm season won't be long enough. I have read that they took 110 days to set seed.
The ollas seem to be a good idea, thanks for the idea.
 
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s. ayalp wrote:I had a similar problem, certain times in a year I have to leave them up to 2-3 weeks, and plants that are about to set flowers just die. After reading Bainbridges book, gardening with less water, I started to use ollas. For plants like peppers they work just as good as it gets. With a lid, a correct sized olla ( or clay pots in the same manner) can hold the situation up to 2-3 weeks. If I'm late and come back in 3-4 weeks plants do suffer a bit, but they are alive and already fruiting
I never tried but a plastic reservoir over the olla or porous capsule might also work. Also a wick system with a reservour (fiber wick), like given in page 50 or 55 (if Im remembering correctly) might me another and cheaper solution.
Hope it helps!



Last November, we went on vacation for a week.  I put plants in their pot in a pan of water.  We were gone three weeks and the plants did fine.

Maybe you could use barrels or buckets full of water and put one end of a rope in the bucket and the other end in the plant. I have used this method in the past. Try this experiment and see if it works.

You could also take 2 liter or gallon plastic jugs with a small pin hole in them.  I haven't used this on a vacation but have used it in the garden when I could monitor the results.
 
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Ibc and a water timer?
 
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