Goals for next year?

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What are your gardening goals for next year?
Mine go like this. (We're in one of the colder areas of zone 5, in northern PA, in the mountains.)
Goals:
1. To produce all the veggies and salad stuff we eat year round (by extending the season with a hoophouse and row covers, and by freezing, drying, or canning) - EXCEPT winter squash, sweet corn, and maybe potatoes and onions and carrots.
I haven't space enough to grow winter squash or sweet corn, and I can buy potatoes, onions, and carrots reasonably year round. I'll grow *some* potatoes, onions, and carrots but won't be able to grow a whole year's supply.
2. To grow some of our fruit. We planted blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, rhubarb and gooseberries this year. We'll probably plant more blueberries next year, and maybe a fruit tree or two. And a kiwi vine or two, *if* I can get a friend to build a strong trellis for them (he builds beautiful trellises/arbors). I'd like to put strawberries in next year too.
3. I have a goal of eating something fresh from the garden every single day of the year. By dint of using the big bay window ledge to grow mini-tomatoes (etc.) indoors in winter - as well as by season-extension with a hoophouse - I can accomplish this without too much difficulty.
4. In addition, I have a goal of producing $500 profit from the garden next year, $1000 the year after next, and $1500/year thereafter.
We haven't enough room for to do this by selling fresh veggies (low profit margin), but I *might* be able to do it by selling miniature vegetable plants, herb plants, started vegetable plants, and started perennial flower plants. I will certainly try.
We're living on a minute, fixed income (health problems) so meeting these goals would make a very, very substantial contribution to our welfare and standard-of-living. Even meeting the first two goals will help a lot.
The same health problems that keep us from working, however, often make it difficult for us to meet gardening goals. But I think we can do it.
What are *your* next year's gardening goals?
Pat
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My goals for next year:
1. To product more tomatoes - only got 10 x 1L jars of spaghetti sauce this year - and to only grow Romas. Nobody likes the cherries except the in-laws - why waste the space.
2. To plant before June 30th. This year short growing season becuase I was afraid of frost warnings - should've at least planted the root crops.
3. To plant more dill.... there is never enough
4. More peppers - cut down this year and only got a bushel - not enough for a decent roasting sessions - but enough for the spaghetti sauce..
5. Grow enough potatoes for a yr - did this last yr. Such a late start this yr didnt' work out.
6. Re-establish all the herbs I lost in last yrs deep freeze. Lost alot of herbs I have had for yrs.
7. Clean up the front flower bed - it was a mess this yr.
Oh there are so many things I would like to do.....but these are the main ones.
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On Tue, 30 Sep 2003 17:48:36 GMT, "Tina Gibson"

I didn't get enough peppers this either, and not enough eggplants. Next year, I plant more of both. Broccoli also: I didn't plant *nearly* enough broccoli.

I don't know where you are, but we had a terribly wet spring and if you'd planted potatoes early on here, they would probably have just rotted in the ground.

Oh dear. Such a shame.
Pat
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I have lots of hoophouse experience, so if you need advice just ask. (I won't see your reply unless you change your archive setting though) There are lots of greens that will take 10F for prolonger periods without dying. You have to figure out if you want to water under the hoophouse (it gets very dry, even in winter. But if you leave a hose outside it will burst, at least here). I water maybe twice during the three coldest months, and only the overwintering lettuce and arugula which needs it. The radicchio goes down three feet if established and gets water from there. Not watering virtually eliminates winter weeds.

Because the deer leave them alone, I grow potatoes in trash parts of the yard (places I don't want to mow, for example). I cover with wood chips, and let nature take its course. Low yields, mostly partial sun locations, but no work. I am mentioning all this so that you may consider growing potatoes in places other than your garden, ifspace is at a premium. It is good to have potatoes. When I have them, I eat very little other starches.
Also, if you don't have a lot of spce, you should consider planting high yield veggies. Corn, high yield, it ain't.
You could also consider overall nutritional value. It ultimately affects your quality of life by keeping you strong. Probably minerals and vitamins are only part of the story - somehow, beets and Concord grapes make me feel very well, even though they are not all that nutrient rich - however, greens tend to top the charts of nutritional content. And, they are also the hardiest of veggies.

If you are going to grow fuzzy kiwi, they will produce tremendously and last you through the winter and are also very healthy (three times the Vit C of an orange, and as much salicilic acid as an aspirine). But they are a lot of work, watering and manuring. Hardy kiwis don't last nearly as long, though. And it takes forever before they start bearing.

I found that the best yield indoors is from pea shoots. I usually start them in early december and grow them until I need the window space for seedlings in february. You can buy low quality peas in bulk for the purpose, and they are cut and come again. The next best, of course, are sprouts.

I think it can be done. There are books on backyard gardening for profit, and you should talk to local nurseries.

I hope you succeed. When we eat particularly well from the garden, I tell my wife that we live like kings. And nothing keeps me as strong and as healthy as a little garden work and huge salad from the garden each night. It is great that certain pleasures are available to all.
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snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com wrote:

Thanks for sharing your goals. :) I am amazed how well organized you are. On a rare occasion of TV watching (while I was seeding a peck of chiles), I happened to catch Martha Stewart yesterday. She was visiting a certified organic farm (Four Season Farm) up in Maine near the coast. Here is some information and some pics:
<http://www.marthastewart.com/page.jhtml?type=content&styleType=tvradio&c atidΚt16935&id=tvs8607>
They grow a lot of "designer" veggies which seems to help their business a lot. And they practice intensive gardening methods, claiming to produc in one acre what regualr gardens get in six acres. Impressive if true. I was also struck by their 8 large hoop-houses (quite large ones), only two of which are at all heated and then just to keep from freezing. Both owners have written books, neither of which have I read.
We currently have a cold frame but are considering a small (cheap) greenhouse or hoop-house to extend the growing season a bit more. In years past, we always had spinach in a cold frame in the winter and it was always fabulous. It was also great for getting an early start too.
Our goals for the coming year include expanding our gardens some more by making better use of the space we have and by selection of better cultivars. Over the winter, I think we will build some demountable trellises to aid in growing many of the things that like to climb. We will still make yse of our tripods but will try some other methods, especially for the peas. We might also dig a new 4 x 50 bed and do some terracing in the steeper sections of our yard to pick up some useable space there.
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On Tue, 30 Sep 2003 16:57:44 -0500, Phaedrine Stonebridge

That's Eliot Coleman and his wife (Barbara Something). I have Coleman's book 'The Four Season Harvest' and consider it *very* valuable for anyone wanting to extend their season.
Coleman's coastal climate in Maine is probably about equivalent to our mountain climate in Pennsylvania, and if he can harvest all winter from an unheated hoophouse, I should be able to do so as well.

We have all the materials for a 10' x 24' hoophouse and *still* haven't started building it. Hopefully, we'll get this done in October. I hope. I really need it next spring! <knocks on wood, crosses fingers> We have the materials for a cold frame too.
Pat
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Pat wrote:

I was lucky enough to get to hear Eliot and his wife in person. They gave a talk on how they grow all year long using a movable hoop house. Interesting talk from interesting people. If you ever meet Eliot in person, what ever you do, don't ask him "what about the story that greens grown in cold weather have too much nitrogen in them to be healthy?" Someone asked him a question about like that and he got a little riled up. His answer convinced me that there is nothing to worry about but it's been too long to remember exactly what he said.
Steve in the Adirondacks
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Well what I want to ask him is how he deals with all the mercury contained in the kelp he and Barbara harvent from the beach for use in providing trace elements to their gardens. I bet that might have the same effect lol.
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wrote:

He covered this in his book ('Four Season Harvest') and I don't remember the details, but I'm not going to worry about it either.
Pat
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snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com wrote:

my own goals are rather simple.
I want to grow more potatoes. I have already dug out the paths for several new raised beds. I am starting with intensive gardening (planted garlic already in optimal distances from each other) I want to start experimenting with the harvesting of courgettes - how much harvesting, at what stage, produces the best yield, etc. I want to grow tomatoes that ripen naturally in the garden (I'm in Ireland (where you won't find any eggpants)). I want to make better use of my weeds - haven't tried making nettle beer or blackberry jam yet. I want to plant some fruit trees - I have some orange seeds in a cold frame at the moment - more wishful thinking than anything, there. I want to work on getting my bamboo plants growing properly.
and I want to do all that as efficiently as possible.
Kae
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On Wed, 01 Oct 2003 09:47:22 +0100, Kae Verens

How about 'aubergines' ? :)
Could you grow your tomatoes in an unheated hoophouse? That's what I'm planning to do next year as our summer nights get very chilly: tomatoes don't enjoy that.
Pat
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snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com wrote:

I don't have a hoophouse yet. Although - I did find a roll of industrial plastic sheeting behind an oil reservoir in the back garden, which I am planning uses for - a hoophouse may be one of them (I moved into this house only about nine months ago).
In fact, I think I /will/ try a hoop house for next year. I believe it will severely improve my gardening with a few vegetables.
Kae btw: I'm on a high. My first child was born two days ago - 9 pounds 5 ounces, or 4.22 kg. great little guy. Jareth Verens. He has great fingers - will be good at guitar, programming, and fiddling with small plants.
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On Wed, 01 Oct 2003 22:50:45 +0100, Kae Verens

Congratulations! And a fine big lad he is, too. :)
Pat
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snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com said:

Between surgery early in the summer (and delay in recovery due to complications) plus another home improvement project in late summer, I ended up fairly detached from the veggie garden, and I didn't even get my fall plantings done this year. (It was enough work to keep harvesting what was ready and watering when required.)
So next year I hope to be ready, willing, and able to work all summer long.
And I think I will have to sew some cotton bags to put over the corn ears this year, as the birds have learned to rip into the paper bags I have been using to protect the ears.
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Pat in Plymouth MI ('somewhere.net' is 'comcast')

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snipped-for-privacy@someplace.net.net (Pat Kiewicz) wrote in message

Hope you are recovering well. It is my experience that it is furry critters that rip into paper bags, and not birds, unless you have caught them in the act. How do I know it? I use the bags for grapes (bumper crop this year), and it is only the lower branches that get victimized.
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simy1 said:

I seem to be; when I saw the in late August she said 80% healed. I hope when I see her again in November she says 100%.

Nope; no furry critters bigger than a mouse. None of the ears are ever pulled down away from the stalks. And there were lots of little bird scritches and poo all over the corn plants. I'm convinced it's the birds that finally learned to rip up the bags.
Odd thing is, none of them has figured out that the purple millet is edible!
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On Tue, 30 Sep 2003 10:46:08 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com wrote:

1) Make it rain less
2) Keep the sun out longer
3) Make the sun warm things up before June 21st (summer solstice high this year - 62°F and clouds/rain)
Or else get the rice seed ready...or the cactus, who knows
Dan
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wrote:

And it only rains after sundown..... sound familiar? :)
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And spring exits march the second on the dot.
My "plans" are more personal than garden, though the garden figures large in them. I'll add to the thread when I've written something coherent (POST-Caffeine!).
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at www.albany.net/~gwoods Zone 5/6 in upstate New York, 1200' elevation. NY WO G
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snipped-for-privacy@meadows.pair.com wrote in

Just a few things (we're in zone 3a):
1) Finally lay the second path in the garden (it's only been two years, you know.)
2) Attempt peppers again. Now that I have the hothats they can be planted early enough that we might actually get some peppers.
3) Just buy tomato seedlings from the nursury. Starting them from seed is too much work for too little payoff.
4) Grow more kidney beans. Those were good!
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Atara
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