Vegetables and Fruit forum: How much space is needed north of tall plants

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Long Island, NY (Zone 7b)
Scott_R
Apr 23, 2017 5:29 PM CST
I'm trying to plan out the arrangement of two 5x10' raised beds; they're set east-west with a 30" space between them--that is, their long sides run east-west, but one bed is north of the other. I've built a 6' trellis on the north side of the northern bed, and tomatoes will go there. But I could use some room for more tomatoes and for some cucumbers I plan on growing vertically.

Would a trellis on the northern side of the southern bed over-shade the southern side of the northern bed?

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Name: Daniel Erdy
Catawba SC (Zone 7b)
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ediblelandscapingsc
Apr 23, 2017 8:18 PM CST
I wouldn't add a trellis to the front bed. A shorter trellis maybe 4ft with fewer plants might work if you absolutely have to have one but at 6ft and with dense foliage it will shade out the other bed. It looks like there is already going to be some shade from the surrounding trees so use what sun you get wisely. Good luck and I hope you get a ton of fresh veggies.
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Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Apr 23, 2017 8:31 PM CST
Hi Scott -- those are very nice raised beds! It seems that no matter how large or small an area we have for gardening, there is always a dilemma about how to best arrange it.

How many more tomato plants do you want to grow? And what else are you planning to grow in the beds?

My first thought is to put a cucumber trellis on the west end of the south bed (running N-S). A 5-ft cuke trellis can give you a LOT of cukes, believe me!

Put additional tomatoes on the N side of the south planter. Plant "leafy greens" and root crops in the south part of the north planter. And if you're growing peppers, onions, or something like that, put them in the south side of the south planter.

You might be interested in trying out this "kitchen garden planner" from Gardeners Supply: http://www.gardeners.com/how-t...

Happy gardening!
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Long Island, NY (Zone 7b)
Scott_R
Apr 24, 2017 6:25 PM CST
This year my seedlings were ridiculously successful. I have thirty-six big, healthy tomato plants spread out over 5 varieties; I've started to try to find people to take some, but I still imagine I'll have more than a few left over.

Other seedlings I'd started indoors: cucumbers, cantaloupe, arugula. (Also various herbs and other items, but they're going elsewhere). I also have radishes and mesclun to start outdoors. Other things as the room allows and I get the inspiration. (I take part in a CSA so I'll be avoiding duplicating what I get from them, based on prior experience).

I like the idea of the cuke trellis on the west side of the south bed. How many plants could I fit on a 5' long trellis?

I'd seen that garden planner site. Maybe I didn't look at it deeply enough, but I wasn't certain of its utility: it doesn't do any more than let you arrange things, does it? I mean, give you guidance about what plants can be put where without causing problems or how close together? If not, I could probably do the same as easily with graph paper. What would be helpful is something to tell me if my placements are inadvisable.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
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Weedwhacker
Apr 24, 2017 8:24 PM CST
Scott_R, it would be helpful if you would fill out your location on your profile (icon at the top right of the page) so we know where you are located.

Regardless, you do NOT need 36 tomato plants, even if no one takes some of those babies off your hands. I normally plant about 14 and even that is a lot; and I make dozens of pints of salsa, lots of sauce, some canned tomatoes, some juice, etc. (and keep in mind that I live in the north)

I would say 6 cuke plants on your 5-foot trellis. Could you cram more in there.... of course, but 5 will produce like crazy for the space allotted.

Yes, you can certainly plan out your garden on graph paper; you just need to have a grasp on how much room the individual plants will need. I use Printmaster to plan my garden. What I really like about the planner on gardeners.com is the already planned gardens... to give an idea of what you can grow in a certain amount of space. Smiling
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Long Island, NY (Zone 7b)
Scott_R
Apr 25, 2017 10:57 AM CST
Oh, I VERY clearly don't need 36. :)

It just sort of happened that way. I'd planned for poor seed starting results but got fantastic ones (probably due to better planning/equipment than in prior years) and couldn't bring myself to just throw out extra seedlings... so here I am. I'm hoping to give away maybe two-thirds of what I have.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
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Weedwhacker
Apr 25, 2017 2:14 PM CST
LOL, I completely understand about "planning for poor seed starting results" (as well as being prepared for some unknown disaster to strike my seedlings) -- I always grow way too many!
“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer /
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Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Apr 25, 2017 2:43 PM CST
I do the same as in starting too many plants. And then I try to find room for them. Shrug!
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
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LizDTM
Apr 25, 2017 7:05 PM CST
Scott, contact a local non-profit and see if any of them serve families that would like a tomato plant. I would die in heaven if someone would offer my low income residents their own tomato plants. One plant could be life changing for a family. Not only is it food for this summer, but it may convince them to plant their own next summer.
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Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters Butterflies Birds
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Weedwhacker
Apr 25, 2017 9:20 PM CST
Liz, what a great idea! Thumbs up
“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer /
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Name: Linda
SE Houston, Tx. (Hobby) (Zone 9a)
"Godspeed, & Good Harvest!"
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Gymgirl
Apr 26, 2017 9:20 AM CST
I tend to agree with Daniel. "I wouldn't add a trellis to the front bed. A shorter trellis maybe 4ft with fewer plants might work if you absolutely have to have one but at 6ft and with dense foliage it will shade out the other bed."

I also agree with putting that cuke trellis on the west side of the southern bed. Since the sun will travel from E to W over the length of your beds, the tomatoes and the cukes will get adequate sunshine, and so will any low plants in the bed. I tip my hat to you.
Name: Linda
SE Houston, Tx. (Hobby) (Zone 9a)
"Godspeed, & Good Harvest!"
Region: Texas Vegetable Grower Seed Starter Garden Ideas: Master Level Canning and food preservation Gardens in Buckets
Tip Photographer Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Ferns
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Gymgirl
Apr 26, 2017 10:36 AM CST
Has anyone dealt with "Harlequin Cabbage Bugs" before? I posted this pic over on the pests forum, then, discovered what it is.

It's hanging out in my collard greens raised bed. It's also multiplying fast (it reproduces in the summertime, to prepare to munch on all my FALL/WINTER Brassicas, which it loves to eat!!!!)

Need it gone. About to clear out ALL the collards, but, don't want to leave any eggs to hatch and infiltrate my fall/winter garden.

Thanks, in advance, ya'll! I tip my hat to you.
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Name: Dillard Haley
Augusta Georgia (Zone 8a)
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farmerdill
Apr 26, 2017 11:04 AM CST
Harlequin bugs are tough. They prefer broccoli but will feed on most brassicas. In the olden days the only insecticide that would touch them was Sabadilla dust. I use carbaryl today and it is reasonably effective. Still not much available without an applicator license that will clear them all I try not to leave any debris including mulch from winter into spring. When the last of the winter veggies like collards finish in February everything is turned under. Many years that breaks the cycle. here are a few articles:
https://www.gardeningknowhow.c...
http://www.hobbyfarms.com/12-o...
https://ask.extension.org/ques...
http://homeguides.sfgate.com/c...
Long Island, NY (Zone 7b)
Scott_R
Apr 28, 2017 12:01 PM CST
As far as that trellis on the western wall, I was looking around and found this:
http://www.gardeners.com/buy/c...

I wasn't thinking of buying that but of making my own sort of thing, but the concept is interesting: wouldn't I get more growing space without shading other plants if the trellis extended at an angle (past the bed) rather than being fully vertical?

I was thinking about using something like this:
https://www.lowes.com/pd/Blue-...
maybe attached to a wood frame. There would be like a dozen different ways to attach it to the bed, of course.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters Butterflies Birds
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Weedwhacker
Apr 28, 2017 3:09 PM CST
I've seen angled trellises like that -- but it seems to me it would be difficult to pick the cucumbers that are hanging down from it. (that might just be me, though; I admit to not being quite as "nimble" as I once was!)
“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer /
Cubits.org - A Universe of Communities[/I] / Share your recipes: Favorite Recipes A-Z cubit
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