Monday, June 27, 2011

Earth Box Update

It's been several weeks since I planted my Earth Box so I thought I'd give an update on how it is doing.

The last frost date for this area came and went on May 15th, however, I actually planted my pole beans much earlier (around mid-April). It seems I would have saved myself much time by just waiting for the May 15th planting date. The temperatures here, while fairly mild during the day, would dip dangerously close to freezing during the darkest part of the night. I spent a lot of time moving the container in and out of the garage the first month.

That being said, the seeds germinated just fine and broke ground, but because the soil took awhile to warm up, the bean plants stayed a small size for most of May. Out of habit, I planted 2 seeds per hole. All but 2 seeds came up. Then I lost another couple plants, probably to wildlife. Still, I worried about overcrowding the roots as the plants get bigger.

Pole Bean plants in Earth Box - May 7th, 2011

Even when May 15th came, we were bombarded by various hailstorms for the next several days which did a lot of damage to my other plants - especially my hydrangea which found itself with its leaves riddled with holes. Once again, the pole beans spent a lot of time in the garage.

hydrangea damaged by hail

Towards the tail end of May and on into early June, the bean plants, with the help of consistently warm temperatures, started growing rapidly...VERY rapidly!

Bean plants in Earth Box - June 27, 2011
Where I was watering the plants about 1/2 gallon a day, now I am watering them about a 1/2 gallon every morning and another full gallon at night! I'm thinking I could have easily afforded to thin out the plants a few weeks ago.

The plants look so lush and beautiful - much nicer than they ever did when planted straight in the ground. I'm still a couple weeks away from harvesting, maybe longer because of the slowed initial growth, but I'm looking forward to harvest time!

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