Row by Row Episode 34: New Years Resolutions for Vegetable Gardeners

Vegetable Gardeners: New Years Resolutions

On this week’s episode, the guys discuss their New Years Resolutions for their own personal gardens. Some of their New Years Resolutions include expanding their garden size, growing more cover crops, growing more winter squash in spring, doing more pickling and fermenting, and growing more okra. Travis mentions that he has plans to expand his garden area by 1/4 acre after the removal of trees and finishes the preparation of the soil so he can get started planting spring crops. This will add at least six more subplots to his current garden production. Another resolution is that he would like to incorporate more summer cover crops into the rotation, especially in the months of August and September when many things won’t grow due to the extreme heat. He also mentions that he wants to grow more crops that can be harvested more than one time. So crops like Asian greens, Lacinato kale, tiger collards, and okra would all be great because you are able to get multiple harvests off that one crop. Greg explains that one of his New Years Resolutions is to increase his soil health by nurturing the earthworm and microbial populations in it. Another resolution he has is to do a better job in succession planting this coming year. The last resolution that Greg mentions is he wants to go back to growing his favorite field corn variety, Hickory King. It is an old heirloom variety that produces around 12 to 13-foot tall stalks and each stalk produces two huge ears of corn. Overall, Greg and Travis looking forward to trying out these New Years Resolutions and hope to have more successful gardens in the new year.

Show and Tell Segment

On the show and tell segment, Travis has some Purple Vienna Kohlrabi and Premium Greens Mix that he grew in his garden. The Purple Vienna Kohlrabi is a great fall/winter vegetable that is cold-hardy, fast-growing and great to eat. The leaves are edible, but most people grow them for the bulb which sits at the bottom of the plant. The bulb has a flavor that resembles a cross between cabbage and cucumber. The Premium Greens Mix is a combination of several different greens like Tatsoi, Mizuna, Arugula, Red Mustard, and Red Russian Kale. This is a great fast-growing, productive crop that grows in the cooler months. It is a “cut and come again” crop that may be harvested 3-4 times throughout the cool growing season. It’s great when prepared raw for a salad, but also can be sautéed with other cool weather vegetables. The tool of the week is the Farmers file that has a double-side for taking the excess material off and single-side for finishing up getting that edge as you want it. Greg talks about the new hand-held Oscillating hoe that they have been working on that has been redesigned to fix on a handle.

Viewer Questions Segment

On the question and answer segment, the guys answer questions about NOP compliant pelleted seed and how to plant mustard as a cover crop. The NOP is the organic compliant pelleted seed which you see a lot with carrots or lettuce. They explain that pelleted seed will definitely be something they carry in the future, but the varieties may be limited initially. They contrast growing a large cover crop of mustard versus a small one and explain that broadcasting is more feasible on a larger plot while a walk-behind seeder works well for smaller plots. Greg says if he is using mustard for a cover crop he will broadcast it, but if he is using it for a food crop he will use the seeder and plant in rows.

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