Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

?s about a above ground garden (this is my first time!!!!)

Posted by on Jan. 18, 2010 at 5:22 PM
  • 18 Replies
  • 1314 Total Views

I live in San antonio Texas.  I am going to start my garden in March.  I want to grow Strawberries, bazil, parsley, cilantro, tomatoes, cucumber, and squash.  I know I wont do it all but I want to do some.  Can someone help me?  I am going to use the rail road plaks for the garden. My neighbors mom has her garden with these.  can someone tell me how I should do this?  How much do you water every day?  It gets in the 100s for 30+ days here .... how do I keep them from getting fried?

Photobucket
by on Jan. 18, 2010 at 5:22 PM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
SanDiegoMaxMom
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 6:49 PM

Hi and welcome.  I replied to your post in the SHM group and I'm glad to see you here!

For someone just starting out the best thing to do is go to your local plant nursery (not Lowes,  Home Depot, Target or Walmart) and talk to them.  They have the inside track on when to plant and what grows best in your area.

Your county will also have an agriculture extension that can provide very helpful info that's specific to your area.  They usually have a website.

For really hot days, you can use a patio umbrella or shade cloth for part of the day.  Your garden center expert will have the scoop on this as well.

GOOD LUCK!!!!

mommyof3-2008
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 8:03 PM

Thanks!  i will go to my nursery this week and see what they say.  Glad you pointed that out because I would have gone to Lowes...Thanks!

Quoting SanDiegoMaxMom:

Hi and welcome.  I replied to your post in the SHM group and I'm glad to see you here!

For someone just starting out the best thing to do is go to your local plant nursery (not Lowes,  Home Depot, Target or Walmart) and talk to them.  They have the inside track on when to plant and what grows best in your area.

Your county will also have an agriculture extension that can provide very helpful info that's specific to your area.  They usually have a website.

For really hot days, you can use a patio umbrella or shade cloth for part of the day.  Your garden center expert will have the scoop on this as well.

GOOD LUCK!!!!


Photobucket
specialwingz
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 8:20 PM

If you are talking about railroad ties...that is NOT a good idea.  Railroad ties should NEVER be used for vegetable gardens.  They are treated with coal tar creosote, which is toxic.  It leaches into the garden soil in which you are growing the vegetables you eat.  Here is some info on coal tar creosote:

Health effects of coal tar creosote

According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), eating food or drinking water contaminated with high levels of coal tar creosote may cause a burning in the mouth and throat, and stomach pains.

ATDSR also states that brief direct contact with large amounts of coal tar creosote may result in a rash or severe irritation of the skin, chemical burns of the surfaces of the eyes, convulsions and mental confusion, kidney or liver problems, unconsciousness, and even death. Longer direct skin contact with low levels of creosote mixtures or their vapors can result in increased light sensitivity, damage to the cornea, and skin damage. Longer exposure to creosote vapors can cause irritation of the respiratory tract.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has determined that coal tar creosote is probably carcinogenic to humans, based on adequate animal evidence and limited human evidence. It is instructive to note that the animal testing relied upon by IARC involved the continuous application of creosote to the shaved skin of rodents. After weeks of creosote application, the animals developed cancerous skin lesions and in one test, lesions of the lung. The United States Environmental Protection Agency has stated that coal tar creosote is a probable human carcinogen based on both human and animal studies.[4] As such, the Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has set a permissible exposure limit of 0.2 milligrams of coal tar creosote per cubic meter of air (0.2 mg/m3) in the workplace during an 8-hour day, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires that spills or accidental releases into the environment of one pound (0.454 kg) or more of creosote be reported to them.[5]

There is no unique exposure pathway of children to creosote. Children exposed to creosote will probably experience the same health effects seen in adults exposed to creosote. It is unknown whether children differ from adults in their susceptibility to health effects from creosote.

A 2005 mortality study of creosote workers found no evidence supporting an increased risk of cancer death, as a result of exposure to creosote. Based on the findings of the largest mortality study to date of workers employed in creosote wood treating plants, there is no evidence that employment at creosote wood-treating plants or exposure to creosote-based preservatives was associated with any significant mortality increase from either site-specific cancers or non-malignant diseases. The study consisted of 2,179 employees at eleven plants in the United States where wood was treated with creosote preservatives. Some workers began work in the 1940s to 1950s. The observation period of the study covered 1979- 2001. The average length of employment was 12.5 years. One third of the study subjects were employed for over 15 years.[6]

 

mommyof3-2008
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 8:36 PM

Well scratch that idea!!!!!!!  I didnt realize it my neighbor told me about it...does anyone have a good sugestion that is healthy for my kids to make a above ground garden?

Photobucket
specialwingz
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 8:43 PM

I just used cinder blocks.  I didn't mortar them together or anything.  They are just stacked (staggered like building blocks or bricks) in two tiers.  No chemical leaching, no rotting, no maintenance, no problems!

mommyof3-2008
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 9:16 PM

Can I see a picture of yours?  I SEMI drew one on photoshop so dont laugh.  Is this kinda how it is?  The white is the blocks and the green is the garden?  Do you cover the blocks in soil or just in between?  And you said you layered them so it would be two blocks on top of each other right?  So about a foot deep in soil in the middle where the garden is?

Quoting specialwingz:

I just used cinder blocks.  I didn't mortar them together or anything.  They are just stacked (staggered like building blocks or bricks) in two tiers.  No chemical leaching, no rotting, no maintenance, no problems!


Photobucket
specialwingz
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 9:36 PM

I would NEVER laugh at someone's plans!  I think you did a great job!  I didn't section mine off.  I just use decorative stepping stones between some of the rows.  That way I can move them according to my plot rotations.  Here's a picture of mine.  And, my soil is about 12" deep.  I purchased garden soil from Texas Organic Products and had them haul it in for me.  Oh, and BTW - I live about 20 miles south of Austin! :)

mommyof3-2008
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 10:47 PM

How cool is that...your close!  Well thanks for not laughing.  Well I am going to do the cinder blocks.  I went to homedepot and lowes on line to figure out how much the blocks were so I can get a estimate of what I will need.  But I could not find them.  Do you know?  All we have around here is home depot or lowes.  I also read (dont know if you have done this) that you can plant herbs in the cinder block holes doe decoration.  They said to do the ones that like to spread and the blocks keep them from spreading?  I likd that idea.  I figured I can do my oregeno, basil, parsely and maybe some cilantro with each having their own side.  Then in the garden I want to do the vieggies and in the tubes I will do my potatoes.  Have you ever done potatoes?  Hmm...I am trying to figure out if when you get the potatoe if your plant dies and you have to redo the process or if you just re plant the actual plant after getting the potatoe and it regrows?  Also, how big do you thin I should do a nice garden?  sinc you live in the area you know how the weather is.  How do you keep yours form not frying in the summer? What do you have growing?


Sorry for all the questions.  I have always wanted to do this and I am so excited I am actaully going to do this!!!

Quoting specialwingz:

I would NEVER laugh at someone's plans!  I think you did a great job!  I didn't section mine off.  I just use decorative stepping stones between some of the rows.  That way I can move them according to my plot rotations.  Here's a picture of mine.  And, my soil is about 12" deep.  I purchased garden soil from Texas Organic Products and had them haul it in for me.  Oh, and BTW - I live about 20 miles south of Austin! :)


Photobucket
specialwingz
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 11:36 PM


Quoting mommyof3-2008:

How cool is that...your close!  Well thanks for not laughing.  Well I am going to do the cinder blocks.  I went to homedepot and lowes on line to figure out how much the blocks were so I can get a estimate of what I will need.  But I could not find them.  Do you know?  All we have around here is home depot or lowes. 

Home Depot and Lowe's websites are NOT user friendly!  LOL.  I bought mine at Home Depot.  And, I know for a fact that both, Home Depot & Lowe's have them.  We bought patio blocks this past summer and they had the 8x8x16 foundation blocks.  They are in the garden center area of both places.  I think they are approximately $1.39-ish.

 I also read (dont know if you have done this) that you can plant herbs in the cinder block holes doe decoration.  They said to do the ones that like to spread and the blocks keep them from spreading?  I likd that idea.  I figured I can do my oregeno, basil, parsely and maybe some cilantro with each having their own side. 

I love doing this.  You can read up on companion planting and plant herbs and flowers that keep certain pests away from your plants.

Then in the garden I want to do the vieggies and in the tubes I will do my potatoes.  Have you ever done potatoes?  Hmm...I am trying to figure out if when you get the potatoe if your plant dies and you have to redo the process or if you just re plant the actual plant after getting the potatoe and it regrows? 

I have done potatoes.  But, don't anymore.  Here in Texas, it's too warm to store them for any real length of time.  In MN, I had a basement.  Potatoes take a lot of room, above AND below ground.  They are tubers that form on the roots of the plant.  You have to dig up the plant to get to the potatoes.  And, you plant them new each year.

Also, how big do you thin I should do a nice garden?  sinc you live in the area you know how the weather is.  How do you keep yours form not frying in the summer? What do you have growing?

My garden is about 8'X16'.  It is small in comparison to the garden I had in MN.  I had 5 raised beds that size.  But, my lot here in TX isn't large enough for all that.  I grow tomatoes, onions, peppers, lettuce, radishes, green beans, okra, summer squash, zucchini, patty pan squash & lemon cucumbers.  I also have herb beds where I grow rosemary, sage, thyme, parsley, chives & basil.

When I water, I don't use sprinklers.  Most of that water will land on the leaves and evaporate.  I wind soaker hoses through the rows.  This will allow the water to slowly soak into the ground and actually water the plants.  And, never water during the day.  Water in the evening before it gets dark.

 

Sorry for all the questions.  I have always wanted to do this and I am so excited I am actaully going to do this!!!

Never apologize for questions.  That's how we learn. I'm always happy to help if I can. I am also the admin of the Texas Gardening group here on CM.  Come on over and join us if you like!  We are more geared towards the TX gardening issues.


mommyof3-2008
by Member on Jan. 18, 2010 at 11:58 PM

Whats a wind soaker hose?  Is it like a drip one?  I will join that group right now!

Quoting specialwingz:


Quoting mommyof3-2008:

How cool is that...your close!  Well thanks for not laughing.  Well I am going to do the cinder blocks.  I went to homedepot and lowes on line to figure out how much the blocks were so I can get a estimate of what I will need.  But I could not find them.  Do you know?  All we have around here is home depot or lowes. 

Home Depot and Lowe's websites are NOT user friendly!  LOL.  I bought mine at Home Depot.  And, I know for a fact that both, Home Depot & Lowe's have them.  We bought patio blocks this past summer and they had the 8x8x16 foundation blocks.  They are in the garden center area of both places.  I think they are approximately $1.39-ish.

 I also read (dont know if you have done this) that you can plant herbs in the cinder block holes doe decoration.  They said to do the ones that like to spread and the blocks keep them from spreading?  I likd that idea.  I figured I can do my oregeno, basil, parsely and maybe some cilantro with each having their own side. 

I love doing this.  You can read up on companion planting and plant herbs and flowers that keep certain pests away from your plants.

Then in the garden I want to do the vieggies and in the tubes I will do my potatoes.  Have you ever done potatoes?  Hmm...I am trying to figure out if when you get the potatoe if your plant dies and you have to redo the process or if you just re plant the actual plant after getting the potatoe and it regrows? 

I have done potatoes.  But, don't anymore.  Here in Texas, it's too warm to store them for any real length of time.  In MN, I had a basement.  Potatoes take a lot of room, above AND below ground.  They are tubers that form on the roots of the plant.  You have to dig up the plant to get to the potatoes.  And, you plant them new each year.

Also, how big do you thin I should do a nice garden?  sinc you live in the area you know how the weather is.  How do you keep yours form not frying in the summer? What do you have growing?

My garden is about 8'X16'.  It is small in comparison to the garden I had in MN.  I had 5 raised beds that size.  But, my lot here in TX isn't large enough for all that.  I grow tomatoes, onions, peppers, lettuce, radishes, green beans, okra, summer squash, zucchini, patty pan squash & lemon cucumbers.  I also have herb beds where I grow rosemary, sage, thyme, parsley, chives & basil.

When I water, I don't use sprinklers.  Most of that water will land on the leaves and evaporate.  I wind soaker hoses through the rows.  This will allow the water to slowly soak into the ground and actually water the plants.  And, never water during the day.  Water in the evening before it gets dark.


Sorry for all the questions.  I have always wanted to do this and I am so excited I am actaully going to do this!!!

Never apologize for questions.  That's how we learn. I'm always happy to help if I can. I am also the admin of the Texas Gardening group here on CM.  Come on over and join us if you like!  We are more geared towards the TX gardening issues.



Photobucket
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)