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Topics - EarthBoxAdmin

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Questions and Answers / Mixing Plants
« on: June 06, 2017, 12:08:58 pm »
Disclaimer: This post was originally posted by The EarthBox Hero Member, Steve. This user is located in Northeast PA, Zone 5. This was originally posted on June 15, 2006.

Several weeks ago an inquiry was made as to what types of plants can be mixed together in an EarthBox.  I indicated that I would try to put together a list, however that has not been possible because we seldom mix plants in our EarthBoxes.  If we want to grow a different plant, we simply plant a new EarthBox.  The general rule of thumb we tell people is if you want to mix plants, try to mix plant types which you would plant the same number of in an EarthBox.  Even more importantly, if a plant is planted on the opposite side of the EarthBox from the fertilizer strip, as with tomatoes, melons, eggplant, and cukes, try to avoid mixing these plants with plants that are planted on both sides of the fertilizer.

Now, to address the development of a plant mixing list, I am turning to all of the forum members to contribute mixing success stories as well as mixing disasters (in the EarthBox only, of course).  I am looking for contributions regarding what you have tried in past seasons, so that you know for sure if it worked or failed.  If you're trying combinations for the first time this season, let us know about your success of failure when you're done with your harvest, please.  Future plans may be to compile this into a single list for future reference. 

Thanks in advance for your contributions

Questions and Answers / Potting Mix Question
« on: June 06, 2017, 08:26:55 am »
Disclaimer: This post was originally posted by Newbie, Marcia. This user is located in Zone 9, Northern CA. This was originally posted on April 29, 2008.

The whole "mix vs. soil" question is very confusing even after reading most of the posts on the forum regarding this question.  I just bought and filled 3 EBs with "Natural Organic Gardner and Bloome Planting Mix."   Underneath that it says "Premium Garden Soil. Ideal for general soil amending. Raised Bed Planting.  Bare Root Planting.  Large Outdoor Container Planting."  The ingredients are: forest humus, peat moss, rice hulls, chicken manure, worm castings, bat guano, kelp meal, alfalfa meal, oyster shell and dolomite limes"    It didn't have any rocks or sand in it, or any perlite or vermiculite. It didn't seem as "fluffy" or "spongy" as the Earth Box potting mix I used previously which had a lot of perlite in it.  So is this going to be okay?  When I bought it I thought that "Planting Mix" was synonymous with "Potting Mix."  Is perlite or vermiculite an essential ingredient or will I be okay without it.  Any answers out there?

Tips and Tricks / I Found the Perfect Support Cages for the Earthbox
« on: June 02, 2017, 12:10:40 pm »
Disclaimer: This post was originally posted by Hero Member, bdank. This user is located in Zone 7 - Northern Virignia (Fredericksburg). This was originally posted on April 15, 2011.

To make these cages, I used a pea fence that I bought from Gurneys. The pea fences come in two pieces. I used both pieces to make a 60 inch (5 ft) cage.

To attach them to my earthbox I used 4 of the EarthBox Staking System Rim Clamps that can be bought in the earthbox store.

The bolts that came with the staking system clamp werent long enough for this purpose, so I bought some longer stainless steel (to avoid rusting) 10/24 x 2 bolts to replace them with. The nuts that came with the clamps are still usable.

When the pea fences aren't attached together (as shown above) they are 30 inches. These shorter cages are good for crops that don't grow as tall.

To attach the two pea fences together I used 20 wire rope clips that I bought from Pambina. Where I got 100 of them for $11.00 ($15 with shipping). They are much cheaper to buy here than at the big box stores.

The pea fences are clamped together at the legs with the wire rope clips.

A cheaper version of this cage could probably be made by using cow panel instead of the Gurneys pea fences. I decided to go with the pea fences because they are heavy gage wire that is strong enough not to to bend under the weight of loaded tomatoes vines, and they fold flat for storage.

To make one 60? cage:
1 set of 2 Gurney?s pea fences
4 EarthBox Staking System Rim Clamps.
4 10/24 x 2 inch stainless steel bolts (the nuts that you need will come with the staking system clamp but the bolts that come with it are too short for this).
20 wire rope clips

If you get on the mailing list to receive a Gurneys Catalog they will often send you are coupon good for $25 off a $50.00 purchase.

THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT: Tomato plants will grow very tall and heavy with fruit in an earthbox. For any plants that grow taller than waist high, you must find away to secure the entire box so that it will not topple over (it has happened to me). I secure mine, as shown in the photo above, by pounding rebar into the ground through the hole in the staking clamp. If your earthboxes are on pavement, you could secure them by placing a cinder block on each side of the box.

The original idea for these cages came from Raybos post on tomato Ville.

Tips and Tricks / GardenDoc Tips
« on: June 02, 2017, 11:58:30 am »
Disclaimer: This post was originally posted by Hero Member, gardendoc. This user was located in Ocean Springs, MS Zone 9A. This was originally posted on April 10, 2013.

From time to time I seem to be a renegade in the proper care and feeding of Earthbox crops (FBP use and "the snack" come to mind). There been a lot of interest since I started posting videos of the "mad scientist" in action. With that in mind Im starting this topic that will focus with methods that I have found successful here at the UNF. Ill be moving some of the more memorable tidbits here.

I spoke at the Greenhouse Tomato Short course last month in Raymond, MS and found these neat little clips that greenhouse tomato growers use. I think will make trellising much easier in our home gardens. I bought these from Growers Supply,, item 110007 tomato clips.

Tips and Tricks / Soil Wicking Question for Second Year EB's
« on: June 02, 2017, 09:40:01 am »
Disclaimer: This post was originally posted by Guest, alicemagooey. This was originally posted on April 15, 2009.

Hi.. I started last year filling my EBs per Donalds suggestions , moistening the mix as I went and filling the EB.

Now, I am reading in the EB instructions and hearing other people who have used EBs for years saying that a person can simply
1.remove old plant stems
2.dig out old fertilizer strip( probably some of the crusty soil on top also although the official EB PDF file does not say this)
3.add new fertilizer strip
4.cover with cover, secure and cut
5.plant new plants
in the EB replant kit instructions PDF, it says to pull back the x flaps and water from the top into each hole.  It does not mention when or how to fill the reservoir with water..
first or afterward?

Do people actually find that this method wicks as well as the start from scratch method of moistening and adding mix to empty earthbox?

i am hoping that i did not miss this in my searching for an answer..but sometimes, there are several differing opinions..and i would appreciate hearing them.
i do not want to do the process over after finding that my old , renewed EB was not going to wick correctly.


ps... i have been reading and re reading old posts and Mickie whose opinion i respect, says that she just leaves her boxes mostly full and just replenishes the top.
I guess if i do not get any responses from anyone who consistently does anything different, like maybe Donald(??) ( i could not find specifically what you do but since you usually mix your dolomite into your whole mixture when first filling your EBs, i would think that you would empty and re fill your boxes yearly, using your time tested method of using a separate container to moisten and mix the mix before placing and pressing it into the EB.)


Tips and Tricks / Trellis design gallery
« on: May 30, 2017, 08:56:47 am »
Disclaimer: This post was originally posted by Hero Member, PaulB. The user is located in Southeast New Mexico, zone 7. This was originally posted on April 16, 2010.

We have some very creative gardeners here at the EB forum.  Many have found solutions to the towering abilities of growth that an earthbox can provide.  Others are searching for these solutions.  While this thread is in no way intended to take sales away from EB of their trellis systems, it is intended to serve as a clearinghouse for the various trellis ideas that people have come up with.  With that idea in mind, I invite all of you to post your trellis ideas, plans, and photos here.  Also feel free to post links to older threads that have trellis photos in them.

I will start off this thread by posting the tomato tunnel trellis I just built.  It is made out of a single piece of 8 foot by 20 foot concrete welded remesh wire, with 6X6 inch openings.  It is held in place by 4 steel fence posts hammered into the ground.  Please note that the nylon string connecting the wire to the posts is just a temporary measure, until I can find the roll of plastic coated steel wire I have hidden away in my garage.

First of all, a view from an angle. This trellis was built specifically for a variety of indeterminate tomatoes.

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