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agfinguy
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How Close is too close

I have a 12 by 4 raised garden bed and planted tomatoes, squash, beans, cucumber, romaine lettuce but as I look at them now they seem very close. I'm trying to picture them when full grown.. first time doing it. I'll post some pictures tomorrow.

speedster7926
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last year i planted 5 toms, 5 bell peppers, 2 zuch, 6 squash, 2 egg plants, 6 okra, and 5 cucumbers they were fine but some did not get as big as i wanted them too oh and 3 other pepper plants
Thanks for all the help and advice Daniel G.

gumbo2176
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Tomatoes and squash get pretty big. My tomato plants get to 6 ft. tall and span about 3 ft. from side to side. Squash stay mush shorter but are bigger in diameter than tomato plants with their huge leaves. I'd say at least 4-5 ft. across each plant when fully grown.

Cucumbers will climb a trellis and that is my preferred method of growing them. It doesn't take up much ground space and keeps the fruit off the ground helping to prevent rot and making harvesting easier. Beans,(bush type) don't get very big in size when compared to the tomatoes and squash. You didn't mention how many of each you have growing in the raised bed. That alone will determine how crowded it gets.

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applestar
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Going vertical is definitely the key to conserving space. Cukes on vertical trellis, pole beans on arched trellis, etc. Tomatoes can be pruned to single vine on a tall stake, and lettuce can huddle in the semi shade underneath.

Only way to keep down squash is to plant "bush" varieties or to allow them to "escape" the garden bed and sprawl on the paths or lawn. Vining winter squash can be allowed to grow up a sturdy support like a fence and the fruits supported with slings.

You do still need to consider the root spread and nutrients and water to support them all.

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agfinguy
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Thank you everyone..

garden5
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That's the beauty of raised beds (or any beds for that matter) is you can intercrop. Since you will not be walking in the beds, you just have to make sure you can reach your crops from either side. Now, for the toms, that would probably mean planting them closer to the edge.

But as far as too close goes, it all depends. Typically, I've heard of square foot gardeners giving toms 1 sq. ft. each. this translates to about 1ft. equidistant. for the cukes and squash, it would depend on whether the squash was bush or vining and whether or not cukes were trellised. As Apps stated, going vertical goes a long way in getting them maximum use out of a space.

For the lettuce, you could actually plant that in-between your tomato plants since its root system will not be directly competing with them. In fact, this would be beneficial to the lettuce in that the tomatoes would shade the lettuce and help keep it cool in the summer.
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agfinguy
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Here are some pics of the raised bed. Comments and advice are welcomed. Thanks!

[img]https://i821.photobucket.com/albums/zz133/agfinguy2010/Picture001.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i821.photobucket.com/albums/zz133/agfinguy2010/Picture004.jpg[/img]


[img]https://i821.photobucket.com/albums/zz133/agfinguy2010/Picture005.jpg[/img]



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