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Monday, January 21, 2008

Garden in a Box, Week 3

On Friday I left you with this picture.

My husband spray painting some cups. The reason is simple, roots don't like light.

Cup Containers
Here are our 3 week old tomatoes that have been transplanted into new containers, the cups.


Below is some of the other vegetables that have had an early start. Click on the photo to see the notes on what is what.

week 3

The good neighbor peas has been pulled from the box and transplanted into these planters. They are now under our bathroom counter, with fluorescent lighting them. They are thriving there.

New planterCow Peas


Meg said...

Aha! Looks good--and I love that your peas are growing in the bathroom cabinet. That would be an unexpected surprise for a snooping houseguest.

Robbyn said...

ok that's a great idea for under the counter! your starts look great!

BoysMom said...

Wow! I wish mine looked that good. Only the brassicas and one tomato have any leaves so far. Well, I don't have any grow lights, they're just making do with a south and west window corner, so I guess all things considered, they aren't too bad.
They've still got months to go, anyway.
Do you know if melons can have their stems burried like tomatos can? Some of those seedlings are getting awfully leggy already, even without leaves.

V said...

Well that explains what Dan was doing. I have questions for you:
My daughter wants to do a science project about the best environment for growing plants.
Given the temperature here we can't put anything outside to get sunlight and we don't have any good indoor spots. What would be the best indoor light to use to mimic sunlight?
Which plants would be best to grow?
The entire project was her idea. She wants to determine if sunlight or water is more important for plant growth. One plant will be watered and kept in the dark and one will be given light but no water.
Do you think that the artificial light will effect her results?
Thanks for any help, babe!

Phelan said...

V, The artificial light will effect results, she needs to have a control. One that is in the same light as the test with water. A fluorescent should be fine, or a grocery store grow light. Each have the required spectrums for growing. Make sure she has complete darkness for her watered plant, any light entering the area will effect the outcome. You might want to get some tubing so that it will not be exposed until the last day of testing. Both water and light are important to plants, with holding either will result in death, if a little light gets into the dark test subject, you could end up with some sorry looking pale vines. As for what type of plant, any large bean should work. Good luck and let us know how it comes out.

Phelan said...

Meg, It might just make them want to snoop more. :D

Robbyn, we weren't sure what to do with this odd shaped area. But this seems to work great.

Boysmom, if any of them start to get leggy, I would place some soil over them. I have never had a problem with doing so, unless I overwater, then you get some rot going.

Phelan said...

V, sorry I might want to clarify. The Control should be watered and placed under the same lighting that the test subject that is with light/without water is under. Does that make sense?

Jackie said...

I've been reading your blog for awhile now and today I came across a post on Livejournal that you might be interested in:

I don't know if that can help you or not, but I thought I'd try and pass it on just in case! :)

Phelan said...

Jackie,looks like the post you have linked to is protected.

V said...

oh thank you!!!
I hadn't even thought about the control plant. Thank you for reminding me and thanks also for the ideas. (I might have to e mail you if I have more questions...)
You rock babe!
♥hugs you tight and kicks you♥

Phelan said...

V, email me for an answer. I think you are the one that needs the kick. ;D

Anonymous said...

Oh, phelan I'm jealous. I cannot even begin to think about starting seeds until March or transplanting until May. When do you usually transplant outdoors?

Phelan said...

Farmmom, cool weather items will go out in March, while the other items wait until last May early June. We are a little early with the tomatoes, but you will see...

Blessed Wife and Mother said...

Looks good! We are going to direct sow most of our goodies! I kill during transplant somehow. Everytime they never make it. Any tips!?

BoysMom said...

Farm Mom,
Our last frost date here is traditionally in late June or early July. It was mid-June last year. We have a little solar greenhouse, but we don't expect to get any use out of it until at least April or May. I start the plants early anyway: it's the only way I can get enough growing season to get anything out of them.
It requires keeping an eye on Baby so he doesn't dig dirt by the fistfulls out of the pots or pick the leaves off (the older two've learned better finally) and a husband tolerant of lots of largish potted plants in the living room. He's hoping not to repeat the six foot tall tomato this year, but at least we have a sixteen foot ceiling this time around.

Phelan said...

Blessed Wife, well there could be several reasons why they are not makingit through transplant. Start with your soil temp. Going from a cozy indoor temp to out can shock them, place them out on the porch during the day to get them use to the kind of weather. A good way to warm up your soil for earlier planting is useing a dark cloth like a weed barrier over the area and allow it to "cook" the ground. (70F)

Make sure you wash your hands before handling your plants. This is important if your smoke.

Your transplants could be root bound. When you pull it out of the containter, all you will see is a net of roots. If you go to buy a plant, if the plant is taller then 6 inches, {in a standard green container} it is more then likely root bound.

You might also be putting them out too soon. If the temp at night are below 60F you need to place something like a plastic milk cartons or pop bottles over them, creating a green house.

Without know exactly how you are doing these transplants, I can only guess at a reason. Good luck.

Boysmom, That still cracks me up. Do you have pics?

Blessed Wife and Mother said...

Well...sounds like our biggie is buying from the store with root bound. Is there a way to losen it up without breaking it so that it will transplant well?
I am planning to direct sow this year for our first garden, but will be buying some already fruiting tomatos from the local extension. Should I transplant those tomato plants while they are fruiting or wait until its done fruiting first? Or should I just leave them in the container???
BTW, I dont smoke...I do find it funny though that people who are very natural minded might still smoke! LOL!
Thanks again for the help.

BoysMom said...

The tomato? To the best of my knowledge we have no pictures. If we do, it would be a background item. The tomato didn't hit six feet until it was about a year old, and its pot at the time was at least 18 inches across.

Path to Freedom has bigger tomatos, and they have pictures up, but theirs are outside. You could get a pretty good idea of what the beast was like from them, though.

garden goddess said...

I've had good luck growing herbs in my aerogarden. It's fairly expensive, but works well. See photos at


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