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Video: How To Get Three Crops Of Vegetables In A Season
The hotbed worked all summer
Last year, quite unexpectedly for myself, I became the winner of the "Summer Season" competition and received a greenhouse from the "Life at the Country House" company.
We must pay tribute to the organizers of the competition - they kept the intrigue until the last moment, and therefore, when almost all the participants were awarded, and they were very experienced and respectable gardeners, and only the main prize remained, I decided that they simply forgot about me - I didn't even dream that I will become its owner.
Honestly, when deciding to participate in the competition, I did not think at all about the main prize - if only because we already had two greenhouses on the site, and, it seems, the third was useless. But, answering questions and preparing for the new season, I realized what I was missing for happiness in gardening life - a hotbed!
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The fact is that I prepare seedlings of vegetable and flower crops myself, and if there is a vegetable conveyor that we arrange in our beds, it is required until the end of July. In addition, I grow many flowers, including perennials, which can be planted in open ground often only in the fall, but where should they be kept before that? I’m already silent about the various cuttings, cuttings, processes that appear on the farm throughout the summer and also require space for growing.
When I went to classes in the Botanical Garden, our wonderful lecturer Yuri Borisovich Markovsky, speaking about the rooting of some plants, often suggested: "Yes, stick them in a cucumber greenhouse - they will take root there remarkably", but by the end of the lecture cycle he remarked: "However, if you plant all this there, then where will you grow cucumbers? " So - the only way to save cucumber and other greenhouse plantings from an abundance of tenants is to make yourself a hotbed.
Of course, many will consider the creation of such a structure a pampering - not everyone will be as lucky as I am, which means you need to make a frame, and you need to buy a film, in short, is the game worth the candle? What can you answer this question? Naturally, if a gardener only grows vegetables that are planted in spring or early summer and sit in the beds until the end of the season, and from flower crops he prefers annuals, then he does not really need a nursery, but everyone else?
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First of all, the nursery is very convenient for everyone who is fond of seed reproduction of perennials. It's no secret that planting material is quite expensive, and if you suddenly wanted to make a curb along the path made of heuchera or you need a wall of delphiniums along the fence, can you imagine how many plants you will have to buy and how much to spend? Of course, only growing from seeds can help in this case.
In addition, the seeds of many plants are much easier to get than cuttings, and shipping them is cheaper. Unfortunately, many perennials develop rather slowly, the seedlings of some species are very small, and, of course, it will not be possible to plant them immediately in a permanent place - first you need to let them grow. Even a seedbed will not help here - it is good for growing rooted cuttings or for fast-growing plants with large shoots.
Now about the benefits of a seedling greenhouse for vegetable growers. Our plots are small, and many cannot afford to cultivate large gardens with dignity, so it turns out that it is more convenient to take several crops from a small area. But the summer in our area is short, and in order for the plants to please us with products several times per season, we have to grow seedlings, reducing as much as possible the time the culture stays in the garden. After all, the area required for the development of seedlings is small, there is enough space for it in a box or other container, and already grown plants will be planted in the garden, which will give the harvest in the shortest possible time.
Thus, even here you can get up to three harvests from one area. But for such a conveyor to work properly, it is necessary to have grown seedlings of another by the time of harvesting one crop. Of course, vegetables such as root celery, peppers, tomatoes, early cabbage varieties, leeks and nigella onions have to be grown in the apartment, but then, as soon as the weather permits, they all move to the nursery. Last year, cold-resistant onions, cabbages, salads settled in the nursery in the last days of March, however, we have heating means in case of frost. And the last seedlings of daikon, Chinese and Chinese cabbage went to the beds in the second half of July.
With a similar compaction of the crop rotation, we get such sequences of vegetables. For example, as soon as the soil ripens, we plant spinach, followed by seedlings of ground standard tomatoes, after which radish will still have time to grow at the end of summer. Or, first we sow early carrots for summer use, and behind it, in the second half of June, we plant beet seedlings for winter storage. Or - radish, followed by seedlings of early potatoes, after harvesting which we plant seedlings of daikon or Asian (Peking, Chinese) cabbage. In general, if you think and experiment, you can find many options. Here everything becomes fundamental - the soil conditions of the site, and the specific tastes of family members, and the possibilities of caring for the plants, and the availability of conditions for storing the vegetables obtained.
I would like to share my experience in planning and organizing a family garden. I want to say right away that I got the majority of useful ideas, principles, technologies from the books of N. Kurdyumov, T. Ugarova, N. Zhirmunskaya, as well as from articles in various periodicals. But no matter how well written the book is, applying any advice on your own land makes adjustments, that's what I want to talk about.
First of all, we streamlined the territory of our garden - we laid out the beds and outlined them with a croaker. The soils on our site are clayey, a spruce forest used to grow here, the fertile layer is small, with any digging, poisonous podzol turns out, so the beds had to be lifted, or rather, created from compost, grass, manure and from any organic matter that could be found. A separate plot was prepared for potatoes (about 0.25 acres), in addition, the vegetable garden includes two greenhouses 6 meters long, each with two beds. After we decided on the size of the garden, the question arose of what to plant on it. Of course, each owner has his own preferences, but I want to say about our considerations in this regard.
First of all, we refused to grow cabbage for pickling, because our agricultural enterprises now grow it perfectly, in the season it is very cheap, and we have stopped taking up space for it in the garden. But with the early one, which we collect in June, we are busy, despite the difficulties with growing seedlings, because in the summer the whole family lives in the country, and early vegetables are more than relevant for us. The same with potatoes - we grow very early (which we dig already in June) seedlings, in addition, we plant some early varieties, but in the usual way, we buy the rest in the fall, when potatoes are cheap. Among other crops, we first of all plant everything that gives early production - radishes, spinach, watercress, perennial onions, lettuce, kohlrabi, early ripening varieties of turnips; we sow early carrots in the greenhouse "under the barrel" to the tomatoes.
Like any gardener, I have my favorites - sweet peppers, carrots and pumpkin - I always grow them, even if it's not profitable, just because I like these plants, however, I usually don't have to complain about their harvest.
In addition to the listed vegetables, parsley, celery, peas, dill (in company with cucumbers), beets (common and Swiss chard), parsnips, sweet corn (a favorite children's delicacy), onions, rutabagas, beans, Chinese, Japanese and Peking beans grow in our garden cabbage, spicy herbs (cilantro, catnip, hyssop, cumin, etc.). We plant a little zucchini - they quickly become boring, and when stored, pumpkin is much tastier. We plant radishes, turnips and daikons quite a lot - they do not leave our table almost all year round. Well, in greenhouses, in addition to the already mentioned peppers, tomatoes of all kinds of colors and sizes and cucumbers reign, to which more exotic neighbors often settle - eggplants, melons and others. As I already mentioned, we are always trying to grow something early, so we plant some of the cucumbers with seedlings, and some with seeds (their fruits will be salted),in addition, we grow several bushes of overgrown (10-12-week-old) tomato seedlings - from them red fruits can be obtained already in June.
And finally, a few more words about the nursery, which has now firmly taken its place in the vegetable garden. In our small greenhouse, we have installed tables with lattice tops, on which there are boxes and other containers with seedlings and crops. Moreover, on the one hand, the tables are stationary, and on the other, at the beginning of June, they are removed, since at this time most of the seedlings go to a permanent place and space is freed up for another garden bed under the roof. In early spring, the ends of the nursery were covered with two layers - a non-woven covering material and a regular film. After the threat of frost passed, we removed the film, which significantly improved the thermal regime of the greenhouse.
And in conclusion, I would like to once again thank all the firms that provided prizes for the participants of the "Summer Season" competition, since all their gifts did a great job on our sites last season, and I hope they will work more.