Ask a Question forum: Containers

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Italian1954
Oct 11, 2016 4:18 PM CST
What size container can I use to plant bush beans and radishes from seed? Also what is the best soil?
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Oct 11, 2016 4:22 PM CST
I use a gallon size nursery pot for beans.
Radishes, I wouldn't bother.

The only reason for starting the beans in a pot at my house is the voles eat the seed... If you don't need to protect the seed from rodents, or the emerging seedlings from birds... I sure wouldn't bother.

I use regular garden soil for starting my seeds.
Name: Daisy
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Oct 11, 2016 5:12 PM CST
Welcome!

Are you starting your plants to later transfer to the garden? Or is this a container garden?

If its a container garden, use containers that are at least 10 gallons and potting soil.
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
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dyzzypyxxy
Oct 12, 2016 6:34 PM CST
I'm with stone on the radishes - they aren't worth the effort. The ones you can buy at the store will taste as good or better than what you grow. That's the only reason to grow your own veggies for me - fresher and better taste.

I have really terrible soil in a garden space with large trees all around it, so I have resorted to growing all my vegetables in containers. The largest pots you can handle will give you the best results, and not too much of a chore for watering. You must use potting soil because other soil will compact and not retain enough moisture or air spaces. Potting soil is mainly organic material that acts like tiny sponges, fibers expanding when wetted and contracting as they dry to leave air space.

My kids found Earth Boxes for me, and I must admit most of my harvest comes from them now. They are a self-watering container the shape of a large window box, and come with casters which is handy if you are using them on a paved surface. They will hold a 3ft. row of beans nicely, OR 3 or 4 tomato or pepper plants OR 3 broccoli/cauliflower/cabbage plants or a row of peas or . . any combo thereof. Whatever else you like, but don't crowd. Using the fitted plastic cover once you have planted your Earth Box makes them extremely water-efficient, and there is no weeding and very little problem with pests as well. Once you get them planted according to the directions, all you need to do is make sure they are watered, and wait for harvest (well, you might have to support your plants with some stakes or cages . . ) Here's a picture of one of mine:

Thumb of 2016-10-13/dyzzypyxxy/4954bf

Elaine

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Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
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RickCorey
Oct 12, 2016 6:47 PM CST
Italian1954 said:What size container can I use to plant bush beans and radishes from seed? Also what is the best soil?


Welcome to NGA, Italian1954!

The bigger the better, I think, assuming you intend to grow them to maturity IN the pots.

If you're just starting the seeds in containers, both beans and radishes are easy to start by direct-sowing in their final growing place, so most people just do that.

For a big container, I would make most kinds of commercial potting soil both cheaper and faster-draining (better aerated) by mixing the potting soil with screened bark shreds (pine, fir or balsam, ideally).

I try to remove bark dust and fines smaller than 1/8th or 1/16th inch (2-3 mm). I also screen out chips bigger than 1/8th inch (nothing bigger than 3-4 mm). I'd add the bark fines to outdoor raised beds, and use the big chips as mulch (or grind them smaller with an electric lawnmower).

You might scan this thread:
The thread "What's going on in our summer/fall vegetable gardens?" in Vegetables and Fruit forum
or look for posts by @Newyorkrita in the "Vegetables and Fruit Forum". Rita grows many vegetables in containers, maybe some were bush beans.

Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Oct 12, 2016 6:59 PM CST
I would guess one could grow bush beans quite successfully in a larger container. Best would be not so deep but more surface area to put in more plants.

I did once grow bush beans in a rectangular container only about 8 inches deep but maybe 12 wide by 24 or so long. I am thinking those plastic imitations of half wine barrels would also work well.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Oct 12, 2016 8:34 PM CST
Thanks, Rita!

edited to add:

>> I did once grow bush beans in a rectangular container only about 8 inches deep but maybe 12 wide by 24 or so long.

Those dimensions finally rang a bell for me. I could make a "container" like that (or larger) out of six concrete paving stones, 8"x16" x 3/4" thick. 16" x 32" x 8" high, if I didn't overlap them any.

Or a smaller container from four pavers: 16" x 16" x 8" tall.

16"x16" = 1.8 sq ft
12"x24" = 2.0 square feet
16"x32" = 3.5 sq ft
[Last edited by RickCorey - Oct 13, 2016 6:04 PM (+)]
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Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Hummingbirder
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Newyorkrita
Oct 13, 2016 5:33 PM CST
RickCorey said:Thanks, Rita!


Big Grin Thumbs up
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Oct 18, 2016 4:41 PM CST
dyzzypyxxy said:I'm with stone on the radishes - they aren't worth the effort. The ones you can buy at the store will taste as good or better than what you grow. That's the only reason to grow your own veggies for me - fresher and better taste.


Actually, my point was that radishes are better planted in the ground...
Anything that grows that easily is well worth growing IMHO.

And... I'd totally druther plant the beans in their final resting place too... but... those large seeds never come up when garden planted.

This is what it looks like when I plant seeds in the ground:

Thumb of 2016-10-18/stone/96721f

Italian1954
Oct 22, 2016 3:41 AM CST
Thank you everyone☺
All your answers were very helpful.
I a..m looking forward to looking at your gardens.
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Oct 22, 2016 4:03 AM CST
I disagree on radishes. And grow fancy lettuce and baby bok choy too. Buy a cat litter box, and good potting soil in a South window and 6-2-2 slow-release organic fertilizer. Have good salads all Winter.

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