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2022 Mid-Atlantic Garden, Lawn, and Other Green Stuff Thread


mattie g
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Anyone with experience growing New Jersey Tea shrubs? There’s mixed reports online about how much deer munch them. I’m getting 2 for free next month and wondering how much protection they need.

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20 hours ago, mattie g said:

<snip>

I really have to get some lettuce seeds into the ground...

My 4-year-old and I took care of this yesterday. She's an awesome gardener! My 9-year-old and I have always done the same, but she was playing with friends and I needed something to keep the little one occupied. :lol:

We planted buttercrunch lettuce, sugar snap peas, and a sprinkle or two of parsley. I also threw some mache seed down in the bed that will host tomatoes. I figure I've got a good 5 weeks until I plant tomatoes, so the mache can take hold while the tomatoes are indoors and as shortly after they get transplanted.

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19 hours ago, WinterWxLuvr said:

Yeah that’s pretty much it. Things like corn, beans etc here will get planted around the first of May. Tomatoes etc, May 10 is the date usually. 

KOKV has had 2 years in the past 5 with a freezing temp as late as May 9-10. In 4 of the last 5, it has had mid 30’s in and around the 15th with at least one as late as the 17th. Mid 30’s at KOKV is a guaranteed freezing temp in the higher valleys north and west of town.

That's a pretty reasonable set of dates for the summer stuff. I like to get my tomatoes in around May 1, though even that can be pushing it. We had that one cold snap two (?) years ago that got us down into the mid-30s a couple days in a row in the first week of May, so I had to put buckets over all my tomatoes to keep them from getting bitten by frost.

One really annoying thing is when I'm ready to harden off the stuff that's going from indoors to outdoors in late April, then an unexpected chilly period hits. You can tell the plants aren't thrilled when you take them from room temperature in the morning and toss them out into 50s and partial sun during the day. :lol:

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Yo @mattie g! Was talking  produce the other day at work and ended up with some Miner’s Lettuce seeds. Happy to drop some in the mail for you if interested. Offer extends to the reg posters in this thread as well. :)

9B0C09B7-A523-4B6D-B188-F73B3093770F.jpeg

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1 hour ago, vastateofmind said:

Pink dogwood blossoms are just starting to pop on our front tree...and of course, we're due for a string of overnight temps at or below freezing in the coming days. SO pissed....gonna go without dogwood blooms for the umpteenth year in a row due to early warmup followed by a late-season freeze.

That sucks.

Cherries are going to get blasted, as well.

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1 minute ago, nj2va said:

Leaves on our hydrangeas are opening up - do I need to cover them?

I read that the buds need to be protected from frost/freeze or it may not bloom, but some varieties are more hardy than others. I will cover mine just to be safe.

 

"More serious frost damage turns the leaves and emerging buds dark brown to black and wilted. Hydrangeas that haven't put on any new growth or developed flower buds are likely to be fine, even after a frost or freeze."

https://homeguides.sfgate.com/hydrangea-pruning-hard-frost-72951.html

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7 minutes ago, clskinsfan said:

My carrots, beets and radish are handling the cold just fine. They are sleet covered this morning. Cold weather veggies are really something special. Can harvest them right into the winter in our area. 

That's great! I'm becoming quite partial to some cold-weather crops.

I planted mache (corn salad) in the fall and just let the plants go all winter. I've been harvesting them this month, and they're fantastic. The plump, sweet leaves make an incredible accompaniment for lettuce in our salads. They lend a really hearty note, kind of like spinach does, but probably even more so.

I'm going to plant some broccoli seedlings this afternoon to go along with more mache, some lettuce, and snap pea seeds that I planted last week.

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Here’s a (VERY compressed) shot of the seedlings, taken on Saturday right after I potted them up. I gave away one seedling of each of the four tomato varieties to a neighbor, and will probably do the same again once I transplant since I always keep an extra seedling or two in pots just in case something goes wrong.

Jalapenos are front right with most of my basil behind them. Tomatoes take up the rest except or a couple more basil plants in the front left and one little cup of tomato seedlings that my little one wanted to start on her own. :lol:

The setup is just a couple LED grow lamps and two heat maps from Amazon and a Target garment rack. It’s just enough to start what will actually fit in my garden (plus some extras of each as I mentioned). I’ll get something else started once I get this cleared, but I’m not quite sure yet. Probably just some herbs or or leafy greens - something fairly simple that I may not even transplant.

Hoping to be able to plant in about three weeks if the weather cooperates!

BCD7C55B-0BC0-4928-BD87-B144548AE5BF.thumb.jpeg.0e1e619677f89ad626f046f39d1536a6.jpeg

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2 hours ago, Eskimo Joe said:

@mattie gdo you use a heating pad for your tomatoes?

Yup. You can see them - black pads sitting on top of the white tray - under the plants. Pretty straightforward stuff. Soil temp in my starter pods was about 85 degrees. Quite warm, but it definitely gets the job done. If I didn't have the pad, I'd have a hard time getting anything started since my basement is anywhere from 58-62 degrees or so this time of year (it almost never dips below 56 nor gets above 68 at any time).

I also have a timer that I set to about 16 hours of light and heat per day until potting up this second time, at which time I reduce to 13-14 hours in preparation for planting.

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  • 2 weeks later...

A family of groundhogs have been grazing in the yard for the past few weeks. There are at least 3, including a 3 legged one. I have watched them closely to see what they are eating, and they were eating the chickweed early, then some clover, and now dandelions. Well hell yes on that. The clover I do like for ground cover when the grass ultimately fails, but they aren't pulling it up and it is pretty prolific. Their den seems to be in the woods just beyond my back yard, and so far they haven't been digging, but I will need to keep a close eye on that as they apparently look for a new (grassy) burrow for the warm months. Anyone have an experiences with these critters?

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15 hours ago, CAPE said:

A family of groundhogs have been grazing in the yard for the past few weeks. There are at least 3, including a 3 legged one. I have watched them closely to see what they are eating, and they were eating the chickweed early, then some clover, and now dandelions. Well hell yes on that. The clover I do like for ground cover when the grass ultimately fails, but they aren't pulling it up and it is pretty prolific. Their den seems to be in the woods just beyond my back yard, and so far they haven't been digging, but I will need to keep a close eye on that as they apparently look for a new (grassy) burrow for the warm months. Anyone have an experiences with these critters?

My only experience with groundhogs is the one that grazed in my leased garden plot in Columbia back when I had a condo. Every night he would eat what he liked and take one bite from my pumpkins and spit it out. I swore I’d kill him if I had the chance.

Then one night after working an Os game, I was heading home late and decided to water so I wouldn’t have to make the trip out the next day. Sure enough, I heard rustling and he was in the garden eating stuff. I picked up a shovel, inched closer to within striking range, he didn’t move, and I wimped out.

I shared all my efforts and decorated with scarred pumpkins that year.

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36 minutes ago, nw baltimore wx said:

My only experience with groundhogs is the one that grazed in my leased garden plot in Columbia back when I had a condo. Every night he would eat what he liked and take one bite from my pumpkins and spit it out. I swore I’d kill him if I had the chance.

Then one night after working an Os game, I was heading home late and decided to water so I wouldn’t have to make the trip out the next day. Sure enough, I heard rustling and he was in the garden eating stuff. I picked up a shovel, inched closer to within striking range, he didn’t move, and I wimped out.

I shared all my efforts and decorated with scarred pumpkins that year.

I am more worried about them making a new burrow in my drain field lol. Most of what I grow that are at risk are flowering plants like day lilies and roses, and the bigger issue with those are deer. I walked back into the woods and found the den. It's right at the back edge of my property adjacent to the farm field. They don't like anything the smells pungent, so maybe I will drop some peeled garlic around where they enter the yard to graze. I have been chasing them off the last couple days by making a loud banging noise when I see them.

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On 4/18/2022 at 9:41 AM, BlizzardNole said:

Our hummingbird has been coming back and forth to the feeder despite temps starting in the upper 30s.  Tough little bugger!

I am looking forward to the warmth coming later this weeks as I really want to get my trays of flower seedlings back out in the sun

I'll get my feeder out this weekend. Probably have one buzzing around here.

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Approaching peak lawn here. It will look great through May, but beyond that will start heading downhill with trees fully leafed out, increased transpiration, and increasing sun angle.

Letting it grow and mowing to a height of 4" helped quite a bit last summer. Only had to reseed like half of it lol.

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Really interesting early season gardening for me this year. Nothing died after being covered with two inches of  snow and frozen for consecutive nights. For those of you in cooler areas those crops include: Cabbage, Bok Choi, Carrots, Beets, Radish, Lettuce, Spinach, Broccoli, Peas, Turnips, Onions and Kohlrabi. This is by far the most aggressive I have ever been with gardening. I really tried to expand my variety of crops this year. And I direct sowed these "cold" weather crops in early March here. I wanted to see how they would do in zone 6 that early in the season. They do not grow quickly at those cold temps. But they survive. And we are about to head into a warm period where I expect them to really take off. Plants are really incredible with how survivable they are. Happy gardening friends. 

Editing this to include my indoor crops. Tomatoes, Peppers, Eggplant, Melons of all kinds, Squash of all kinds and celery are all doing great. They will be transplanted outside around May 15th here. Which is my guaranteed last frost. Potatoes and corn will also be direct sowed at that time. Pole beans will go in 2 or 3 weeks later when they can use the corn stalks as a trellis. 

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12 hours ago, clskinsfan said:

Really interesting early season gardening for me this year. Nothing died after being covered with two inches of  snow and frozen for consecutive nights. For those of you in cooler areas those crops include: Cabbage, Bok Choi, Carrots, Beets, Radish, Lettuce, Spinach, Broccoli, Peas, Turnips, Onions and Kohlrabi. This is by far the most aggressive I have ever been with gardening. I really tried to expand my variety of crops this year. And I direct sowed these "cold" weather crops in early March here. I wanted to see how they would do in zone 6 that early in the season. They do not grow quickly at those cold temps. But they survive. And we are about to head into a warm period where I expect them to really take off. Plants are really incredible with how survivable they are. Happy gardening friends. 

Editing this to include my indoor crops. Tomatoes, Peppers, Eggplant, Melons of all kinds, Squash of all kinds and celery are all doing great. They will be transplanted outside around May 15th here. Which is my guaranteed last frost. Potatoes and corn will also be direct sowed at that time. Pole beans will go in 2 or 3 weeks later when they can use the corn stalks as a trellis. 

Sounds like an awesome garden, and I'm sure you have a ton more space to plant than I do!

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Just moved my tomatoes, jalapenos, and basil into a shaded area outdoors to start the hardening off process. Things don't look terribly promising for warm weather in the longer term, but as long as we're not threatened with a frost/freeze or multiple successive nights in the 30s, I'll get them planted in 10 days or so.

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