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Growing your own fruit and veg

I would love to hear from people who have had success growing their own fruit and veg. What have you found grows most easily? Any tips on what should be avoided or what is difficult to grow?

I would like to start a veg patch out the front of my house (can't do it out the back because of my two inquisitive, veggie-loving dogs).

I have tried growing tomatoes, strawberries, carrots and various herbs in the past and have had "some" success with the tomatoes and strawberries (until my dogs ate them  ::)) but I have found it a struggle to grow herbs such as coriander (cilantro).

I would also love to have  lemon, lime and mandarin trees.

Advice and suggestions would be greatly appreciated  :)

i grow my own herbs in pots on the back porch.
we make rosemary, oregano, lemon thyme, and basil.
we grew tamatoes last summer. and i was excited about going organic with these since they're my favorite.
but these big creepy looking catapillers were all over them, and my parents had to put pesicides down.
so that ruined my tamatoes.  :'(

but i would love to grow my own strawberries. yum yum.

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I grow zucchini, summer squash, butternut & acorn squash, cucumbers, sugar snap peas, tomatoes, green and jalapeno peppers, watermelon, cantelope, strawberries, sweet corn and anything else that strikes my fancy when buying seeds.  I've never really found anything to be difficult to grow.  I think it's all a matter of getting it planted during the right time and picking things that work well with the growing region for your area. 

Oh and romaine lettuce and broccoli.

Good luck!

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my mum had a lovely garden this year! some of the produce included tomatoes, zucchini, egg plant, curly lettuce, romaine lettuce, spinach, pole beans (thats what we call them in pa but technically i think that they're french green beans), one pumpkin!, peas, 4 types of peppers, cucumbers, and basil. We also have a pear tree but the pears kind of sort of suck to be frank.

i don't know what her secret was but make sure that you fence everything in so that the buds aren't eaten by animals.

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ooh I'm jealous of your produce!

We kinda started to grow stuff but it was demolished by dogs not insects. Our next door neighbours were growing chilli, capsicum, zucchini etc but our dogs made their way into the neighbours backyard and ate their produce, it was very upsetting, the  neighbours were not impressed and we were mortified. Whoever said pop chilli on stuff and the dogs will stay away has not met my pups...they love chilli, i have caught them chewing whole chilli's with no probs!

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the easiest things that i have found to grow were lettuces, herbs (though i can't manage parsley??), beans, peas, peppers, berries, and squashes, etc.
those are the simplest i have found.
also,
tomatoes (some years are better than others)...it just important that you manage them, and don't allow alot of the growth to overcrowd (so there is good air circulation through the foliage) or
grow/ fall to the ground...bc this encourages rot. i haven't tried the hanging tomato planters (where the plant actually grows down) but they are apparently very successful.

you might want to try planting things in large whiskey barrels or large "ceramic" pots/urns.
we have some ceramic stacks...they are about 3ft or so tall, and you "plant" them in your yard/garden....but this avoids (hopefully) the dogs or other critters from getting into all the goodies.

i dont know where you live, but we also grow  a lemon tree here in the NE (US)...w/ little real success..the fruit is about the size of an olive! lol...but i have heard that it is very possible to grow good citrus trees year round in a south facing window. i think martha stewart had some info on growing them...you could check her website.

oh, and cucumbers!

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you might want to try planting things in large whiskey barrels or large "ceramic" pots/urns. we have some ceramic stacks...they are about 3ft or so tall, and you "plant" them in your yard/garden....but this avoids (hopefully) the dogs or other critters from getting into all the goodies.

My twin uses large flower pots to grow jalapenos, tomatoes and green beans.  And of course I have to tease her about having a marijuana garden.  (I know really not that funny)

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i dont know where you live, but we also grow  a lemon tree here in the NE (US)...w/ little real success..the fruit is about the size of an olive! lol...but i have heard that it is very possible to grow good citrus trees year round in a south facing window.

plus, it's great feng shui  ;)

We've got a raised bed in our back yard that we grow tomatoes, carrots, okra, blue potatoes, sweet potatoes, zucchini, butternut squash, corn, beans, garlic, and collards in.  Plus marigolds and sunflowers.  I have various herbs in pots around the house.  My basil looks like crap this year and my coriander bolted before the solstice, but I think it's because it was so dry up here until a few weeks ago.  Rainy season came 6 weeks late and that always screws everything up.

Tip:  When you water your garden, soak it.  Don't do a light watering and if it rains, but only a little, go ahead and water it.  If your plants only get a little of water seeping through, they'll develop shallow roots and be encouraged to sit near the surface, further encouraging drying out, competition for nutrients, all sorts of pests, etc... 

Tip 2: Cayenne pepper dissolved in a spray bottle of a biodegradable soap (like Dr. Bronners) and water will keep most bugs at bay.  Do not use hot sauce; use pepper powder.

I know everybody grows tomatoes, but I've found them to be the moodiest, most difficult veggies to grow.  Plant several and if you start seeing something funny with one plant, pull it up and get it out of the garden, because it likes to take everything else with it.  This years crop *crosses fingers* we've been successful with most, but our corn never got more than three feet high (kinda cute, we refer to it as our "dwarf corn," still making ears, so who knows why? perhaps shallow roots or lack of water).

One thing we did differently this year is companion planting (planting things together that protect each other from bugs, weather, etc...).  I highly recommend the book Carrots Love Tomatoes by Louise Riotte and also The Vegetable Gardener's Bible by Edward C. Smith

Time for us to start thinking about fall crops here in the mountains.

Have fun with it and plan to spend time on it.  It's a wonderful hobby and immensely rewarding.  Good luck!

**EDIT**

Almost forgot...tip 3:  mushroom compost is your friend.  It stinks like...well, like sewage....but it makes for happy happy little plants.

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strawberries are easy to grow and yield extreme awesomeness!

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i dont know where you live, but we also grow  a lemon tree here in the NE (US)...w/ little real success..the fruit is about the size of an olive! lol...but i have heard that it is very possible to grow good citrus trees year round in a south facing window.

plus, it's great feng shui  ;)

We've got a raised bed in our back yard that we grow tomatoes, carrots, okra, blue potatoes, sweet potatoes, zucchini, butternut squash, corn, beans, garlic, and collards in.  Plus marigolds and sunflowers.  I have various herbs in pots around the house.  My basil looks like crap this year and my coriander bolted before the solstice, but I think it's because it was so dry up here until a few weeks ago.  Rainy season came 6 weeks late and that always screws everything up.

Tip:  When you water your garden, soak it.  Don't do a light watering and if it rains, but only a little, go ahead and water it.  If your plants only get a little of water seeping through, they'll develop shallow roots and be encouraged to sit near the surface, further encouraging drying out, competition for nutrients, all sorts of pests, etc... 

Tip 2: Cayenne pepper dissolved in a spray bottle of a biodegradable soap (like Dr. Bronners) and water will keep most bugs at bay.  Do not use hot sauce; use pepper powder.

I know everybody grows tomatoes, but I've found them to be the moodiest, most difficult veggies to grow.  Plant several and if you start seeing something funny with one plant, pull it up and get it out of the garden, because it likes to take everything else with it.  This years crop *crosses fingers* we've been successful with most, but our corn never got more than three feet high (kinda cute, we refer to it as our "dwarf corn," still making ears, so who knows why? perhaps shallow roots or lack of water).

One thing we did differently this year is companion planting (planting things together that protect each other from bugs, weather, etc...).  I highly recommend the book Carrots Love Tomatoes by Louise Riotte and also The Vegetable Gardener's Bible by Edward C. Smith

Time for us to start thinking about fall crops here in the mountains.

Have fun with it and plan to spend time on it.  It's a wonderful hobby and immensely rewarding.  Good luck!

**EDIT**

Almost forgot...tip 3:  mushroom compost is your friend.  It stinks like...well, like sewage....but it makes for happy happy little plants.

Nutdragon, WHy not use hot sauce? I thought that's what you were doing with the leftover big bottle? Did you find it didn't work as well? I have been using hot sauce.....what's gonna happen!!???

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Nutdragon, WHy not use hot sauce? I thought that's what you were doing with the leftover big bottle? Did you find it didn't work as well? I have been using hot sauce.....what's gonna happen!!???

Texas Pete has vinegar in it.  Vinegar on leaves is bad bad bad. 

Texas Pete on Litte2ant's tofu wings is good good good.  8)

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I just plucked 8 vine ripe tomatoes out of my garden  :)

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If you are having trouble growing some kinds of plants and not others, then perhaps your soil is either too acidic or alkaline.  Most plants grow best at neutral, or a ph of 7, but some fruits like more acidy soil, while a few plants enjoy a more alkaline soil.
For help with this, check out  http://homeharvest.com/plantphpreference.htm
Happy planting!

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Hi,

I just started using the square foot gardening method. Here is a link to the book.

http://www.amazon.com/All-New-Square-Foot-Gardening/dp/1591862027/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/102-6732612-6796103?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1185216877&sr=1-1

I'm so excited! I built the beds (which was easy and they look to promising lol) and mixed up the soil and my kids threw in some seeds and now they are all growing! I got everything planted really late....so I'm waiting to see what turns out....but it is more of a learning experince this year 8)

I love this method because
1) It's organic.
2) I rent and my soil quality is junk.....and with the above ground method I don't have to try to improve the soil.
3) It seems fairly easy to maintain once you get everything going. I haven't had to deal with any pest problems yet....
4) It lets you plant alot in a small area.

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i think it depends on where you live, i just moved from pennsylvania to texas and i was interested in starting a garden, but i wanted to find plants that grow the best down here.  i found an awesome book called texas organic vegetable gardening.  perfect!! i bet there are books like that for most areas in the US.  i also found a helpful book called gardening for the kitchen.  i didnt get to look at it too much, but i think the name says a lot.

have fun!

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I live in a sand pit so all of my gardening is done in containers.  I grow tomatoes, pole beans, okra, hot peppers and many many different herbs.  Growing in containers allows me to move everything into the shed when hurricanes come through in the summer and on those few and far between cold days we get in the winter.  Sadly, the humidity down here prevents me from growing squashes, they always end up with powdery mildew or some other nasty mold.

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