Cliff's Grower Log -- October 2004
Just some notes... I'm planting. Cover crop of hairy vetch and buckwheat.
I'm also putting in a garlic garden. Just can't get enough of this growing
thing... I was hindered slightly as it appears the tractor needs a new
water pump. While riding I get a shower of coolant. So, while I wait for
the part to arrive, I'll just have to make due with the cover crop as it
Ah! Time for my annual "end of season notes". Things done well or done
wrong, and what to try next year:
- The dome shaped hoophouses worked out great! Easy to build, and they
don't get too hot during the day. By mid-June they can become half-domes,
and serve as excellent wind breaks.
- I think my year was made/broken in March when I received a huge load
of manure, and it was a lot fresher than I expected. All year my plants
grew like crazy, leaves and vines everywhere. But fruit growth hardly
happened until August. I had 80% of my pollinations abort. I think I got a
super-dose of nitrogen. They say, only put manure on in the fall. They, are
- I still need more organic matter. I'll see how the cover crop pans
out (not expecting much) and add a lot of good compost in the spring.
I'm also pondering the addition of sand.
- I need better plant management. This season I didn't prune early on,
as this does help with wind resistance. But, after a while my plants are
really a huge mess.
Ah, here is a little tidbit that I want to remember, so I'll publish it
to the world in the process: I grew some pumpkins on sand, and others on
styrofoam, and dirt. Those that grew on sand had flat bottoms (undersides)
while those that grew on anything else formed a cavity underneath the
pumpkin. This is a big advantage for growing on sand!