wordwiz
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Location: Cincinnati

Square Inch Gardening

For my county fair project this year, I want to try a different concept - something akin to square inch gardening. A couple of years ago, I ran across one of those deals too good to pass up - a couple hundred nursery pots (5" wide at the top, 6" deep) and the nursery trays to hold them. Eight pots to a tray that is the same size as a 1020.

My idea is to grow pole beans, cucumbers, lettuce (Romaine), Acorn Squash, Basil and anything else that may work in the flats - eight of each plant. I've had good success with the soil mix I make (silty dirt, compost, aged horse manure) and have the nuits I need to make sure each plant is well fed.

The trays will fit snugly into a heavy duty recycling bin that has handles. I'll be able to construct a trellis using PVC pipe and securing it to the sides with U-bolts, and using either string or bean netting for the the plants that need it to climb or be tied to. I would have fifty-six plants that take up 1400 square inches.

I would like to grow more plants but am limited by the size of the container, the plants needing to be close to ready to harvest in 90 days, plus they need to be able to withstand the summer heat. Any suggestions?

Mike

DoubleDogFarm
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Mike,

I scored the same pots and trays last March. They are equal to a one gallon round nursery pot. I'm thinking they are not large enough for your squashes and other larger plants.

[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/Double%20Dog%20Farm%20Greenhouse%20Photos/DSC03221.jpg[/img]

Also thought these trays would work as net pots. Hydroponics.
[img]https://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h300/eric_wa/Double%20Dog%20Farm%20Greenhouse%20Photos/DSC03222.jpg[/img]

Eric

wordwiz
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Posts: 331
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 9:44 pm
Location: Cincinnati

Eric,

Not quite the same.

[img]https://valleycat.net/garden/2011/pots1.jpg[/img]

I really don't have a clue if they are big enough for the Acorn squash or cucumbers - I've never tried growing them in containers before and don't know how much room their roots will take up. I may try some Sugar Snap peas - I know the weather will be hot but I read someplace the other day they can be grown in mid-summer, albeit not near as well as cool times.

My thinking is that if I can show that leafy plants, legumes and melons can grow, taking up a small space, any interested people can raise cool weather plants in the spring and fall and others in the summer.

Mike

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jal_ut
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Location: Northern Utah Zone 5

I've never tried growing them in containers before and don't know how much room their roots will take up.
[url=https://www.soilandhealth.org/01aglibrary/010137veg.roots/010137ch29.html]Check this out![/url]
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

wordwiz
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Posts: 331
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 9:44 pm
Location: Cincinnati

Jay,

Thanks for the link. I'm wondering if they mistook a maple tree for a cucumber! 3' long roots? Wow!

It would appear my experiment is DOA (actually dead before arrival!) but I have the seeds, containers, soil, compost, manure. The only expenses would be a few pennies for the ferts, some quarters for the PVC, a dime or two for hardware.

What can I say - I'm a knucklehead and just because something doesn't look possible, doesn't mean it is!

I'll post results but if they are bad, I won't display them at the fair!

Mike

vja4Him
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Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:34 pm
Location: California

Re: Square Inch Gardening

I've been Square-Inch (not Square-Foot) Gardening for several years now. Had pretty good success.

I've been fighting the gophers for years, and finally decided to try a new strategy. I'm burying lots of plant containers in the ground, which is working quite well. So far, the gophers have not bothered any plants in the buried containers.

Kale is doing very well, even in small 8-inch pots. Lettuce was growing nicely, until the heat wave at the end of March. Too hot for Spinach now.

Still have lots of containers that I need to bury .... including some large tubs (10-15 gallons each). I already have four large tubs buried in the ground. Two of those four tubs are already planted and growing some nice Veggies (Carrots, Swiss Chard, Peas, Beans), along with a few Flowers (Cosmos) and Herbs (Basil, Fennel).
-- Jim the Wild Gardener

> Climate Zone #8/14
> Hardiness Zones #8-9a

imafan26
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Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Square Inch Gardening

Plants that might grow in gallon pots would be some of the smaller peppers thai hot is only 6 inches tall. I have had fruit from bell peppers, jalapeno, and tabasco chilies in gallon pots for a little while. Lettuce, pak choi, some of the smaller root crops like radishes might be o.k. in small pots. Not very efficient use of space but they will grow. A lot of the herbs don't mind being in containers. They won't get as big but they will still produce. I keep strawberries and green onions in containers all the time. Some of the dwarf tomatoes like red robbin were developed to be kept in small containers. You might even get some bush beans to grow in a gallon size.

The only other thing I would have to consider if you are keeping the pots in a flat is whether there is enough circulation and light so the plants don't end up spindly trying to find growing room or have issues with disease because of the close spacing. If that is the case I would look for plants that can be placed 3 inches apart and are about the same height at maturity in the flat.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

vja4Him
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Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:34 pm
Location: California

Re: Square Inch Gardening

I would like to find seeds for a certain type of Hot Pepper .... The fruit is very small, about the size of a large Blueberry, and purple i color. I've seen these fruits many years ago, but cannot find the plants or the seeds ....

If you know where I can find these seeds, please let me know ....
-- Jim the Wild Gardener

> Climate Zone #8/14
> Hardiness Zones #8-9a

imafan26
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Posts: 11432
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Square Inch Gardening

There are many kinds of purple peppers. The one that is closest to the size of a blueberry and is a round pepper is called filus blue. It is an ornamental pepper so I don't know how pungent it is. There are other ones too different shapes and sizes.

https://www.tomatogrowers.com/Hot-Pepper ... cts/17/2/0
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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