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Questions and Answers / Re: Cherry Tomatoes dying prematurely
« Last post by gardendoc on January 17, 2019, 09:28:07 am »
Are all the plants Husky Cherry Red? If it was the CaNO3 all the tomatoes would be showing the same symptoms. I would lay off the Safer since you don't have any insect pressure in the enclosure. Send me a hi res image, and I'll take a closer look
Questions and Answers / Cherry Tomatoes dying prematurely
« Last post by pmkdo on January 14, 2019, 11:39:26 am »
I grow the same tomatoes in Earthboxes every year. I follow the instructions exactly. I plant them in my pool area, under a screened cage; the plants row  grow very large, I believe because the light is filtered. But the plants have always been healthy. This year the Husky Cherry Red tomatoes are dying from the bottom up, inside out. They are planted in the same box and in the same spot as last year. Watering is constant with the AWS. there is no evidence of an insect problem; I spray w Safer road approx every 2 weeks.T he only difference is that this year I am using the snack 1 tsp. of ammonium calcium nitrate 15.5-0-0 weekly. The tomatoes on either side are thriving as usual. So my questions:
1. Why are these plants dying? Is it the snack? Are the plants growing too rapidly because of the snack? If it is so, why are the plants next to them thriving?
2. Is the ammonium calcium nitrate 15.5-0-0 the correct snack? I saw this stuff on a vireo in the forums
3. Should I replant? Should I use a replant kit as usual? Should I start fresh with an empty box and new potting soil? I planted these tomatoes the first week of November
4. Any other guidance?
Photos attached problem box is in the middle
THANKS for any help.
Questions and Answers / Re: Broccoli in an EB
« Last post by gardendoc on January 08, 2019, 11:05:54 pm »
Show off heeheehee :)
Questions and Answers / Re: Broccoli in an EB
« Last post by SMFAdmin on January 08, 2019, 01:09:35 pm »
Questions and Answers / Re: Broccoli in an EB
« Last post by linear249 on January 07, 2019, 09:16:40 pm »
I put 3 plants per box.  Heads @ 6to 7 inches.  I do the same with cauliflower and just picked a 2# 6 oz head.

Questions and Answers / Re: Broccoli in an EB
« Last post by gardendoc on January 07, 2019, 09:34:07 am »
We've successfully grown broccoli in our EBs. I just used the Bonnie transplants, 6 per EB. Size wise in the 4 inch range, harvest carefully and the plants will push new heads, these will be smaller, but it extends the harvest. Happy New Year
Questions and Answers / Broccoli in an EB
« Last post by greatgardens on January 03, 2019, 07:40:27 am »
I've tried broccoli before, but with limited success -- with 6 plants per box, the heads were very small -- perhaps 4" +/-.  I was wondering if anyone was very successful, and had any tips, including varieties that seem more suited to an EB.
Questions and Answers / Re: Ab EarthBox "Collar?"
« Last post by greatgardens on January 01, 2019, 09:42:37 am »
Thanks!  It gives me some added thoughts that are "outside the box." I'll think some more about stuff I have laying around that might be useful -- like adding a partial grow bag on top of the EB. I had only thought of rigid materials, but no reason that it couldn't be heavy fabric or such.  I do want to retain the reservoir since that makes watering a lot easier.  (And my summer toads like the filler tubes and reservoir, also!)

Questions and Answers / Re: Ab EarthBox "Collar?"
« Last post by feetz on January 01, 2019, 04:07:31 am »
You are absolutely correct.  Adding an extension will provide an area that "gets water at a slower rate".  With approved potting mixes or straight peat moss, you can easily get strong wicking to 18" and beyond. You could flip an older or cracked Earthbox and ziptie it at the rim then cut holes for planting sites. You could also use plastic from barrels or plexiglass or line wood with plastic sheeting. Another option is to experiment with using barrels or large plastic pots instead of modifying perfectly good Earthboxes. More options are to not fill one of the wicking areas in the bottom of the earthbox when adding potting mix OR shrink the amount of wickable area in each of the wicking pockets which will restrict the flow of water on the hottest days but may not affect the mix saturation on cloudy, cool days.

I mention "gets water at a slower rate" because on cloudy or cooler days or if the box is inside under lights, the plants will not transpire as much and the upper layers of potting mix will be much wetter than on warm, sunny days. Taller potting mix will also reduce germination of seeds at a certain point.  I found a 12" potting mix height to be a good compromise between cost and flexibility. Heavy feeding plants like tomatoes or corn may not perform as well if roots cannot access enough water due to drier root zones (wilting).  Hope this helps.
Questions and Answers / Ab EarthBox "Collar?"
« Last post by greatgardens on December 30, 2018, 04:31:05 am »
For several years, I've wanted to try a slight modification on one or two of my EarthBoxes. It would be the addition of a collar around the top of the EB to make it slightly deeper -- say about 3".  The first question that I always get is "why?"  The answer is an increase in the area for roots, and in particular for a drier area since there should be less wicking as we get higher from the reservoir.  Also, some plants in the EB do not seem to like the constant wet feet, and within reason, the amount of perlite added to the planting mix seems to make little difference. Another possible reason is that with two plant per box, some varieties do not grow as large as they do in garden soil. Eggplant is one that seems to produce more under-sized fruits vs the garden. So good or bad, those are my reasons. It may fail as an experiment, but I want to try it.

Now the real question -- what to use as a material to make the collar?  It should be easily available, non-toxic, and will still co-exist with the cover and fill tube. (I have an extension for the tube, so that is not an issue.)  Things I've toyed with -- cedar planking (but it is pretty thick which creates some issues with the fill tube).  Landscape edging -- but I have concerns about what that stuff is made from.  I could sacrifice an old EB, but I do hate to destroy a perfectly good box. So... do you have a suggestion for the collar material? Thanks.

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