Few tips on own city garden
przez Jim Peerless
In 1976 I acquired a greenhouse (6 by 12 feet) a Christmas gift from my wife. I enrolled in a gardening course at UBC where I learned how to create a soilless mix for growing vegetables and flowers from seed. I still this formula today and here it is
- 2 or 3 ounces of ground Hydrated limestone
- 2 or 3 ounces of Dolomite limestone
- 2 ounces of Super Phosphate
- 3 or 4 ounces of slow release fertilizer (Osmocote) 14 14 14
- Mix the above together and add to a mixture of 3 parts damp peat moss and one part Vermiculite or Perlite
Above volume is equal to about one bushel or a volume of 15"15"10" or perhaps equal to a full wheelbarrow load.
It is essential to feed plants a liquid fertilizer solution when using this soilless mix, I use Miracle Grow. I buy the Vermiculite in 110-liter bags and drive to a location where I dig my own peat moss. I do this in July when the peat is damp and not saturated.
Tomato seeds are started in early January on top of my frig. Seeds are inserted between two sheets of damp paper towels, placed inside a Big Mac container and then covered by a paper towel. Seeds generally sprouted after ten days. Next step is to transplant in a container when seedlings are half to one inch tall. Feed with small amounts of Miracle Grow well diluted. Plants should be kept indoors in a South facing room until mid-March after which they are placed in the greenhouse.
By mid-April, the tomato plants are generally in my open air grow boxes. By end of April, I have delivered the plants to various local churches who sell them.
In the summer of 2015, I created a flower bed on the boulevard in front of my house. This ground is City owned and parallels the street. My intention was to create a "sea" of color that could be enjoyed by anyone who walked down the street. This proved to be so and I met neighbors and visitors from other areas of Vancouver. Plants grown were dahlias and were planted in early April. Soil preparation was extensive requiring an excavation of about eighteen inches. Lots of stones were removed. I then put about a yard of mushroom manure into the site and then covered with screened topsoil excavated earlier! Dahlias are perennials and can be left on the ground and later dug up so as to divide the tubers and to allow for trading with others. If cold sub-freezing conditions are expected then the tubers should overwinter in an un-seated basement.