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Monday, February 28, 2011

Planting up!

I found a great price on 24" (8" deep) flower boxes at a salvage store so bought 4 for this year's greens garden.

In previous years I grew greens in restaurant bus bins, but each year they get heavier and a little more unwieldly (LOL) so I'm switching to these boxes that are only half the size.
Another tip is to lessen the weight of even these containers  when certain plants don't need really deep soil.  I save all the styrofoam packing peanuts that come my way and use them for fill. 
The first thing I wanted to plant up were the arugula sprouts.  I figured 4-5" of potting mix would suffice for these fast-growing greens, so filled a couple of recycled plastic bags with peanuts and leveled them into the box. (No holes in the bags - it'll be easier to recycle next year if they aren't full of dirt or roots).
Then I filled the box with potting mix (leaving 1" clearance so it'll be easier to water) and added the 5 containers of arugula.


Next it was time to plant up the 3 kinds of kale.  These guys would likely need more root room, so didn't use any peanuts.  All I did was cover the drainage holes with a torn coffee filter to keep the mix from coming out.
I went with a 6" depth.  Should be sufficient since I'll be cutting these very young. 
Then I artfully arranged the kales: Tall red Redbor in the center, then flanked on both sides first by Blue curled with the showy Fringed mix on the outside.  This should be a very pretty display when they start coloring up.

Now I have 4 of the 5 greens in their final growing bins: lettuce, chard, arugula & kale.  For now I'll keep them under lights, but perhaps in a couple of weeks I can move them up to the sunroom if temps ever get out of the freezer. Once the beet sprouts get some true leaves, I'll plant them to a box too.  All the greens are going great guns this year.  In fact, since the lettuces have matured so quickly (and getting so picked out!) I should really start another flush!  

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1 comment:

  1. Those are some nice looking planters! And great idea about the packing peanuts, and keeping them clean in plastic bags! I don't have any peanuts but I have several pieces of rigid styrofoam packing that I could probably break into pieces.


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