square foot and sowing

In Chicagoland, Zone 5, just put up a tiny raised 4' x 2' raised bed for
sq. ft. garden.
I've got some seeds, probably too late to just sow them into the bed?
Romaine lettuce, Swiss Chard, big chivey looking onions.
Should I just go buy a bunch of seedlings instead? I'm never on time with
the whole "start some seeds indoors in February" thing.
Any "good bet" seeds that might still get me something to harvest by
August?
Reply to
barbie gee
In article ,
Lettuce is good, and the onions will go dormant (no biggie). I don't think the Swiss chard would do much for you, unless you can over-winter it.
Reply to
Billy
You're kidding, right? There's plenty of time for the chard to make a good crop. If you overwinter it (and it likely will), you'll get a big alien looking thing that produces seeds next year.
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic Zone 5/4 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
Reply to
Gary Woods
Must be in the air. I've gardened for decades but this year I tried a 2x4 garden myself.
I'll be interested in hearing from anyone who tried the intensive planting of square foot gardening for more than a year.
I planted some lettuce, radishes, bok choy, spinach & carrots in mine a few weeks ago-- but I'm going to do another in a week or so.
I'll plant some more lettuce, maybe some radishes, some beets [already started] and a couple bush beans as a pure experiment.
I think they'll all do fine. I don't know what Billy's smoking on this one- most Swiss chard is mature in about 2 months. Some does better in hot weather.
If you like radishes at all you can harvest some in early June. Lots of beans are 50-60 days. Zucchini/summer squash can still be planted a couple weeks from now. [but would take up your whole bed-- plant them in a buried pot and mulch around them]
Look over a seed rack and see how many say to plant "after all danger of frost is past." In zone 5 that's mid-late May. Then check the days to maturity- You've got lots of options.
Jim
Reply to
Jim Elbrecht
I made the bed 12" deep, by taking two sets of raised bed kits that I got from Aldi really cheap, and cut down one set of plastic "timbers", because 4 x 4 just seemed goofy for the space I have and the sad sun exposure I have as well. This replaces a long row of single containers I had last year.
Now I have to figure out a temp cover to keep the squirrels and neighborhood cats from digging it all up, too.
good! I know I can always recover in a couple weeks if nothing sprouts by buying seedlings, but if nothings going to sprout at all, I don't want to waste my time. I figure I can cover with some light plastic to make it greenhousey.
thanks
Reply to
barbie gee
In article ,
Typically, the chard that I've grown from seed don't get very large the first year, but are fine producers thereafter. I have plants that I've been eating off of for over 6 years. They throw-out runners that root, and require little maintenance. Usually takes an act of god to kill one off. They over-winter here, but they get very little sunlight during the winter. Since we live in the trees and the trees are always growing, as a reasult every year is a little different.
Reply to
Billy
I have since the "Mother Earth News" introduced me to so-called "French intensive" gardening in the 1970's. Although, I've read Bartholomew and occasionally visit a number of "square foot" web sites, I'm not quite as doctrinaire. Nowadays, I do more "block" planting, although, still in raised beds. Trellis or cage anything and everything that could possibly benefit therefrom. The operative is, "intensive": "Feed the Earth and the rest will take care of itself". There's no such thing as "too much" compost!
Reply to
Derald
That sounds more like the habits of sorrel, not Swiss chard. Sorrel does look somewhat like chard, but is a perennial that spreads by runners. A popular green in many cuisines, sorrel is tarter than chard and usually not as deep a green color. Sorrel is Rumex acetosa. (There are other Rumex sp. that are used as greens, too.)
Swiss chard is the same species as the garden beet (Beta vulgaris). First year, greens and root, second year, bolt to seed (if it winters over at all, which it never has when I've grown it).
Rumex and Beta are genera in the Chenopodiaceae family, so there might be a family resemblance.
If you actually do have perennial chard...that would be something...but it is more likely you have some other green in the Chenopodiaceae family.
Reply to
Pat Kiewicz
In article ,
My sorrel is safely in a pot and makes a good variation on vichyssoise soup. The sorrel tastes a lot like oxalis. Can't explain the behavior of my Swiss chard. What I have is a mix of plants from different sources. I can tell you that one of my neighbors has the same experience that I have. Every spring she pulls back the fallen oak leaves from her chard, and she is back in business. Oh, little mysteries of life.
"The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five senses." - Hanna Rion
Reply to
Billy
-snip-
What zone are you in? I'd be interested in perennial chard if it bears any resemblance to Swiss Chard.
Got a picture? Is it Beta Maritima? [the only perennial chard I could find reference to-- and nothing about anyone eating it]
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it has some juicy stalks like these- I'm in-
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Reply to
Jim Elbrecht
Where are you located? As Pat said, this doesn't sound like any flavor of Beta Vulgaris, especially the runners.
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic Zone 5/4 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
Reply to
Gary Woods
On Tue, 10 May 2011 08:17:08 -0700, Billy wrote:
Doesn't sound like my chard either. Maybe I won't pull the plants up this fall and see if I have anything there in the spring.
Reply to
The Cook
In article ,
70 miles north of San Francisco, west of Santa Rosa, 30 min. from the Jenner.
Runner may have been the wrong term. The stalk will flop over, and where it touches the ground, it will put out adventitious roots. > > Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic > Zone 5/4 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
Reply to
Billy
In article ,
9b
It is Swiss chard that I bought as packets of seeds. I've gone back through my receipts and can't find the purchase so it may have been purchased of the rack at the local nursery. The last ones were the rain-bow mix.
I'll try to get one up today.
Indeed, that is what they look like.
I double checked with my neighbor (just to confirm that I hadn't lost my mind), and she confirmed that her's lasted years, and recounted a story from a friend of hers who has the same experience.
Oh, little mysteries of life.
Reply to
Billy
-snip-
That makes it clear. Your 'winter' is about like the OP [and my] spring and fall in zone 5- which are the best times to eat chard. It generally doesn't do well in our 'summer'- which might reach the 90s 4-5 days a year. -snip-
Now I'm surprised that you can't pick it from Oct-April.
Jim
Reply to
Jim Elbrecht
In article ,
I've been readying beds for plants, and a neighborhood cat think he's died and gone to heaven. Such big litter boxes!
I let him do his thing and then rake out his leavings. No serious harm, no foul.... left after it's removed.
And the cat's happy, so he remains friendly.
I'm putting in a new raised bed this year, three 4' x 4' beds arranged in an L without internal divisions. One leg will be getting strawberry plants I ordered yesterday. I'm not sure about the other parts. Maybe my summer squashes, if I get those parts filled in time. I'm 57 years old and have arthritis in my knees, and I'm shifting one garden cart of soil every evening after work to fill the bed. Anyone got a spare teenager I could borrow? LOL
Priscilla
Reply to
Priscilla H. Ballou
In article ,
One zuke of crookneck could fill 1 of your 4X4s. One winter squash or pumpkin could fill it all, and still be looking for room to spread. Unless you really have your heart set on squash, I'd recommend tomatoes, cucumbers, beans, kitchen herbs (parsley, rosemary, thyme, tarragon, cilantro [cumin]), lettuce, and Swiss chard to name a few.
Reply to
Billy
In article ,
I probably could, but the sun disappears below the tree line from about Dec. to March. and the best I get is a little broken sunlight. During the summer my best is about 6 hours of full sun.
Reply to
Billy
FWIW, chard winters over nicely here in upstate NY (about 150 mi N of the Big Apple), so I don't have to do anything special to grow it for seed. I think I mentioned earlier that I have a metric buttload of "Schnittmangelb Gold" seedlings coming up where I grew it for seed last year. Nice tender light green variety, though not as vigorous as the solid green types.
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic Zone 5/4 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
Reply to
Gary Woods
On Mon, 09 May 2011 15:34:29 -0700, Billy wrote:
What you have is not Swiss chard. Chard will be producing well in a few months, does not run and usually only lasts two years when they produce a large flowering head and then die.
Is this what you have?
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colours are variable the form is not.
David
Reply to
David Hare-Scott

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