Wild Men on the North Fork

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Wyogrow...where the tough get growing, by Fred Jacquot
I have been an active gardener in the Casper area now for over 30 years. Back when I first started no one could tell a beginner what kind of carrots or tomatoes grew best here. Because I have been taking notes all these years, you can find out what plants do best in Wyoming on the 'vegetable varieties' pages, whose links are above.
Along with my partners Mark McAtee and Paul Combe I have done a lot of experimenting and research. You can find the results of this activity on these many pages. Please click on the links and start viewing our work. I think you will find that there is a huge amount of information available here for you. Enjoy!

Below are a few links to some nice garden sites.

Raspberry De Light Farms
Texas A&M Vegetables
Here is a link to Garden Guides!
Rocky Mountain Garden Forum
Garden Humor
About Composting

Between Seasons 2011 - 2012

January 11, 2012

Greetings for the New Year and the New Season. I have three goals to accomplish for this site before the Cottonwood balls fly in Summer: 1) Remake the Peppers - Squash page to reflect all the thought I have been putting into these vegetables. 2) Rebuild the flowers page on this site. 3) Build a new page designed to help first-time gardeners get started. I have accomplished the first of my goals, and am working on the next two. I will be posting more here soon.

January 27, 2012

Barry Franck sends this note.

February 21, 2012

First, I have a note from a reader in Indiana.

Here is my reply:

1. Yes, there are the master gardening groups in virtually every city in the State of Wyoming. Other groups also exist. My gardening partners and I do not like to use chemicals to kill bugs or blight in the plots. In the last 7 or 8 years we have used very little indeed. But I would not hesitate to use chemicals if I thought it was the best solution. You have more bugs in Indiana than we have here because of the moisture in your climate. But these desert bugs here are something you have not encountered. They are tough and voracious. But do not worry, you most likely will be successful with organic gardening here. My own opinion is that we, in Casper, and in much of the rest of the state, are gardening at the climatic margin. If our land was much higher in elevation, or cooler in temperature, good big gardens would not be possible. Our Last Average Day of Frost here is May 25, and I calculate that our growing season is about 114 days, max. So, the logical implications for you are: that you should look to shorter season varieties to be successful, you should definitely plant the 'cool weather' crops like carrots, brassicas, beets. But, as you can figure out, from this site, Warmer Weather plants can also be grown here. Bill Simpson gets good musk melon and watermelon each year. But he direct sows the seed and then covers his growing areas with sheets of glass to warm the soil until the plants are sprouted and the temperatures are warm enough to keep the soils as warm as melons demand. Instead of glass, I use clear plastic tents over my beds for melons. Last year I forgot the tents and had a lousy year with the watermelon. Fortunately, I have a friend in Bill Simpson, who gave me some of his.

Once our weather does heat up we enjoy some serious heat. But the days cool off toward evening. We will have hot nights only for a week to ten days. Spinach, for example, grows well until the heat comes on...then it is all over. That is why my partners and I grow Swiss Chard instead. Temperatures can be mild or even warm in May. Most old-hand gardeners wait until Memorial Day to set plants like Tomatoes and Peppers out. Then, in early June we get a cool period that will drive you crazy. It can be hard for Peppers to survive this spell. Once through it, the garden is off to the races. We will always get another cool period right around September 3 - perhaps even a light frost. Then it warms again and we get the killer frosts starting about September 22. Direct-sown plants can go in a bit earlier than Tomato or Pepper. We try to plant cool weather plants like onion, lettuce, carrot, and peas on May 1.

Soils are an issue here. They typically are hardpan clay or blow sand. Either way, they are lacking in organic material, and so they need to be severely modified.

Climate/Conditions: The biggest challenge our climate bestows, once the plants are in the garden, is the wind. Wind in the Spring and Early Summer will suck the life right out of your plants. If not protected, your Tomatoes and Peppers will die. That is why we surround ours with the tubes (other gardeners use fences or other devises...but every successful gardener uses SOMETHING. By the time a plant can grow up out of the tube it is tough enough to handle the wind. We use small (3 inch) tubes around our Beans and Cucumbers. Both of these plants really do not take off growing until they can shade their own ground. The small tubes provide that shade early on. Also, the tubes really discourage the beetles that love to eat freshly sprouted cucs and beans. Do use the One Third Rule found on my Ideas Page. One other idea I have for you is that even if you find some short season Tomatoes you like, do consider planting half Indeterminate and half Determinate plants. In a cool season the Determinate Tomatoes will outperform the Indeterminates. In a hot season, it will be the other way around. Please find varieties of Tomatoes on this link.

And here is a link to one of my pages. The bottom of the page has photos of our plots and Barry Frank's plots. These will give you a better idea of what can and can not be done in a garden in Casper.

Your garden here will not be as productive as your garden in Indiana. We do not have the soil, or the total hours of heat (particularly at night). A well worked garden here will be 1/2 to 2/3 as productive as one in Indiana. Sorry.

2. I think that row gardens are the norm for the Casper area. I am trying to promote the use of Raised Beds. What the beds do is raise the roots of the plants, exposing them to more total heat. Also, If one has limited space, the raised beds allow for more intensive planting. Do gardeners have good success here without raised beds? Yes they do.

3. Purdue huh? One of my brothers got a degree from there...from Paris on the Wabash (Casper is the Paris of the Plains). Resources for gardening will be scanty compared with Indiana. We do have the Master Gardeners and the County Extension Agent (University of Wyoming). But, one of the reasons I started this site was that information was hard to get when I first started. After 35 years of failures (some every year) I can offer some clues to the readers of these pages.

4. I really don't have any suggested reading. Few books are available about the challenges of high altitude gardening. Do study the planting guide at the bottom of this page.

........................

The big crisis I have been dealing with, of late, is the fact that I can not get Applause Tomato seeds this year. There must have been a crop failure. Love those Applauses. They flat out perform. They will be replaced by Bush Champion. I have never grown Bush Champion. So this is a gamble that I have no choice but to take. Last year we had 14 Applause plants and lost 2 to blight. The other big bed of Determinate Tomatoes (Corona) was a total bust. No matter what I did, Blossom End Rot got to virtually all of those Tomatoes. I hope Bush Champion can resist the blight and the Blossom End Rot. I will, of course, move all the Tomatoes this year to beds that did not grow Tomatoes last year (2011). When attacked by blight, one must rotate.

Main Season Notes 2012

March 23, 2012

My partner, Mark McAtee, reminds me that it snow recently and that the Daffodils were up. Daffodil count: 1. When I walk in the park along Garden Creek at this time of year, I am reminded that there are at least 7 different kinds of Willow along its banks. Some are a bright light green already. Some are neon yellow. Some are orange. Some are a russet. Some show no color at all yet. I also note that may of the birds that leave Casper for the Winter are back including: Robins, Grackles, Starlings, and Cowbirds.

March 31, 2012

Just a quick note. Rhonda Crow sends word that Azomite is being sold here in Casper, at Tom Heald's business on Ash Street between Midwest and Yellowstone. Azomite provides rare minerals for plants.

The last average day of frost for Casper is May 25. I will be getting my cool plants (onions, peas, etc.) in the ground about May 1. Yeah, I know, the weather is great right now. But we still have frosts coming.

April 11, 2012

The big box stores sell plants in pots that supposedly are biodegradable. That is, the implication is that if you put the pots in the ground, they will disintegrate during the growing season. That has not been my experience. What happens in a wetter climate does not necessarily happen here. Remove the plant from the pot before you stick it in the ground. You will have a lot better luck.

.......................

FACTORS IN GARDENING SUCCESS #1

SELECTION

The single biggest factor in the success of your garden will be choosing the right variety. A good selection will overcome many of the natural deficiencies of our climate and soils here in Wyoming. I have links to pages on this site that will help guide you.

Beans - Carrot

Cauliflower - Corn

Cucumber - Peas

Peppers - Squash

Tomato - Watermelon

A general rule for success is to look for the 'days to maturity' number on the seed packet or in the catalog. Choose varieties that are very short seasoned. One caution is that the days to maturity numbers are different for plants that are set out (like tomatoes or peppers) as compared to seeds that are directly sown into the soil (like carrots or beans). For plants that are set out, the days to maturity numbers begin at set out. In the case of Tomatoes look for days to maturity numbers in the 60s or 70s. In a warm season, you may get away with a Tomato whose days to maturity are 80. But, 80 is the extreme upper limit. Year after year, you will have better luck with Tomatoes whose days to maturity are 78 or less.

Note: After the most recent snow, the Snow-on-the-Daffodil count is now 2.

April 17, 2012

After yesterday's snow, the count of snow-on-the-daffodils is now: 3.

.......................

FACTORS IN GARDENING SUCCESS #2

SOIL

It is possible to till ground that has never grown a garden, to seed it, and to have success. But, I guarantee that you will not have success the following years without modifying your soils. Soils in Central Wyoming tend to be very heavy clay or sand. Either way, you will have to be mixing organic materials into your soil to help retain water, to provide nutrients, and to keep the clay from choking the roots. Here is a link to help you:

Soils

May 9, 2012

I have planted thus far: Onions, Leeks, Lettuce, Carrots, Peas.

May 31, 2012

I am getting my beans and cauliflower in now. There is no rush to get the tomatoes, peppers, squash or cucumber in.

.......................

FACTORS IN GARDENING SUCCESS #3

CLIMATE MODIFICATION

We can not change the climate we live in. But we can do some things that will help our plants grow in the climate we have.

Here is a link to a page of mine about Climate. One of the best things you can do for your plants is to break up the wind. Wind can suck the life right out of them. Last season I watched it kill my peppers. One thing we do is to plant in tubes. This keeps the wind off until the plants are big enough to handle the wind. Fences, Wall-O-Water, etc. are also used.

Here is a link to Raised Beds. Raised beds raise the roots of the plants up, exposing them to more total heat. They also allow for more efficient weeding and for more intensive planting.

July 9, 2012

Hot, hot, hot. My beds are jumping. The plants that are doing best are the ones that love heat. If anything is causing a problem it is a cool weather lover like lettuce, peas, or carrots. Tomatoes, brassicas, squash, pumpkin, and cucumbers are doing fine. Beans are a mixed lot. the Henderson, Roc d'Or, and Roma are not doing as well as Contender and burgandy. It looks like I will be getting watermelon this year, the Sangria is performing nicely.

July 16, 2012

Tomatoes have started to set, most noteably these early ones are on the old regulars: Tomande, Applause, Black Krim. Zuchini is starting to produce. The beans are starting to flower.

July 23, 2012

Here are pics from the plots. These were taken on July 18 of this year (2012).


This Applause Tomato has 14 tomatoes started.
each one will grow to 3" or 4".

Baby Cool Breeze Cucumbers

The beans are wonderful this season

My plot neighbor Butch has had to design a huge trellis for his hubbard squash.

One of Butch's Hubbards

Butch already has big Kolrabi.

Butch is trying to encourage the Wasps to visit his plots by providing them homes.

Here are some Cabbage with Beets

My Black Krim Tomato plants are getting big and are laying on some fruit.

A different plot neighbor is already harvesting her sunflowers.

The Zucchini are already producing.

The Zucchini are already producing.

August 3, 2012

Notes to myself:

I have too much to do. I will work fewer plots next year to keep down the prep/weeding load. Garden is really coming along nicely. Beans and Cucumbers are really putting out. Picking is getting to be a chore. I need to plan next year where I am going to plant flowers and seed in marigolds early. They take the heat well and can be transplanted easily when they are small.

August 11, 2012

Here are pics from Barry's Garden. These were taken on July 30 of this year (2012).

August 29, 2012

Notes to myself:

The plots are producing heavily right now. I need to get a really accurate estimate of the square footage allotted to each vegetable soon, so that I may shrink production proportionately next year as we go from 5 plots down to 4 or 3.

The heat has really helped production of cucumbers. Next year I will consider not planting any 'slicing' cucumbers, and instead going with an all Cool Breeze production. I have made a convert of Barry Franck. He too is very impressed with Cool Breeze. I am impressed with Heart of Gold Squash, Cool Breeze, Big Bertha Pepper, Carmen Pepper, Early Thickset Pepper, Contender Bean, Black Krim Tomato, Applause Tomato, Valley Girl Tomato, and Bush Champion Tomato.

I must get lettuce, peas, and carrots in the ground earlier next season. Those gardeners who did are doing well. I am not.

October 6, 2012

Almost all the harvesting is done now. So, it is time for:

The Annual Review of the Garden ... part one

T O M A T O E S - I N D E T E R M I N A T E

Black Krim - An heirloom that works here. Superb taste. Preferred by many chefs. This year it produced nearly as early as the Determinates and kept producing steadily. Had 9 plants, lost one to disease. Will grow next year.

Tomande - A hybrid that always produces. Good taste. Production was later than Krim, but very heavy. Had 15 plants. Lost none to disease. This variety may be the most disease resistant I have encountered. Will grow next year.

Pruden's Purple - a pink heirloom. Supposedly a short season heirloom. It is not. Production was late in a great tomato season. Had 4 plants, lost two to disease. Will not grow next year.

Tigerella - small stiped fruit. Supposedly a short season tomato. It is not. Production was late in a great tomato season. Had 4 plants, lost one to disease. Will not grow next year.

T O M A T O E S - D E T E R M I N A T E

Applause - Love this one. Seed was unavailable this season. Partner McAtee saved the day by having seeds left over from the season before. Produces a lot of 12 oz. fruit and an occasional 16 oz. Good flavor for a Determinate. Had 15 plants, lost two to disease. Will grow next year if I can obtain the seed.

Bush Champion II - Produced well, including some 12 oz. fruit. Had 5 plants, lost none to disease. Will grow next year.

Valley Girl - Produced well, including some 8 oz. fruit. Had 4 plants, lost none to disease. Will grow next year.

NOTE: I really like the combination of Applause, Bush Champion, and Valley girl all in one long bed. Next season I will mix the three all up to keep Applause plants seperate from each other, and hopefully reduce disease.

Polbig - Production was so-so. Not crazy about this one. Had 4 plants, lost none to disease. Will not grow next year.

T O M A T O E S - S M A L L

Grew two plants each of Black Plum, Sun Sugar, Sugar Lump, and Yellow Pear. This is a great medley of flavors. Will plant exactly the same next season.

P E P P E R S

Big Bertha Hybrid - What a wonderful surprise. The walls of this variety used to be thin. It has been rebred and now has nice thick walls. It will grow to be a very large, long sweet bell if you let it. Very productive. Will grow again next season.

Early Thickset - Another great find. This one lives up to its name. It sets early and heavy. The sweet bells are square and blocky with thick walls. They are nice sized but not huge. Very productive. Will grow again next season.

Margaret's - A nonstandard bell from Hungary. It grows to a sharp point. Production is average. Size is average. Walls are thick. Will not grow again next season.

Carmen - An Italian Horn pepper. Turns red. Nice thick walls and wonderful flavor, almost smokey. Very productive. Will grow again next season.

Tiburon - A small to average sized Poblano/Ancho type of pepper. Warm and smokey flavored skin and very hot seeds. Mexican restaurants stuff this one with cheese, coat it, and deep fat fry it....mmm delicious. Very productive. Will grow again next season.

Giant Thai Hot - Hot. Reasonably productive, but not as productive as Cheyenne, which it strongly resembles. Will not grow again next season.

Cheyenne - A cayenne pepper. Turns red. Hot. Very productive. Will grow again next season.

Gourmet Sweet - Aruba - Krimzon Lee - Serano del Sol - all four tried their best to die on me, and they succeeded. I will not grow these again next season. If, in a great pepper season, you can not get a variety to grow, what will it do in a cold season?

October 10, 2012

The Annual Review of the Garden ... part two

P E A S

Planted Super Sugar Snap, just like last season. They did very poorly. We must get them in sooner next year.

C U C U M B E R

I planted Cool Breeze for my picklers. They, as ususual, performed very well. I planted Sweeter Yet for slicers. They also did very well. Next year I will plant nothing but Cool Breeze, and I will eat some for slicers.

P U M P K I N

I planted Racer and Autumn Gold. Autumn Gold perform and gave us a lot of small fruit. I only got 4 fruit off of 6 plants of Racer. I count that as a failure. I will try a different kind nest season.

S U M M E R S Q U A S H

I planted a green Zucchini and Gold Rush Zucchini. Both produced marvelous amounts of fruit.

W I N T E R S Q U A S H

I planted a lot of Heart of Gold this season and it was my best performer, as usual. If I could plant only one Winter Squash, this would be the one. I planted Table Ace Acorn Squash and it performed well. I tried an experimental Acorn Squash this year called Table Treat. It was a failure. I planted Lakota Squash and it performed well. I planted small amounts of Canesi Butternut and it performed very well indeed. It needs a really hot season to do well. I planted small amounts of Golden Hubbard and it did so-so.

W A T E R M E L O N

I was skunked this year again by watermelon. I think I will switch to muskmelon next year.

B U S H B E A N S

I planted Henderson's Black Valentine again this year, and was disappointed with its production. Royal Burgandy grew fine, but its production was not as good as Contender. Roc 'Dor and Roma II both gave heavy production and I have come to appreciated the fact that their production is later than Contender's. But, as you could guess, The ace producer was Contender, sometimes known as Eary Contender. It was magnificent. If I could only plant one kind of bean, it would be Contender.

B R O C C O L I

I grew the old standard again this year: Packman. It is a fine producer. It can go into the beds on May 1.

C A B B A G E

None of cabbage I tried to start before the season turned out. So I bought some at Meadow Acres. They did very well indeed. Beets really seem to like growing between the Cabbage.

C A U L I F L O W E R

I failed to get any Fremont Cauliflower starts. So, I bought locally and was very disappointed with what I got. It was inedible. I may give up all my Cauliflower space next season to Cabbage.

R A D I S H

Radishes were a complete flow this year. I will have to get them in the ground in April next season.

C A R R O T S

I planted Atomic Red, Danvers, and Sweetness II this season. It was a disaster. I need to get carrots in earlier....maybe in April next season. I also need to dedicate more time to the Carrot Beds.

C H A R D

Chard performed well this season. I did not have enough time to tend it correctly. I also have the impression that we partners just don't consume as much as we plant. I need to cut chard back to 2/3 or 1/2 of a box, instead of a whole box.

B E E T S

I planted Detroit Dark Red. I sewed them between the Cabbage and the Cauliflower. I noticed something interesting. Beets liked the Cabbage best and really did best where it got a lot of afternoon shade from taller plants like Indeterminate Tomatoes.

O N I O N S

I planted Ring Master and Big Daddy from Dixondale Farms, and some Walla Walla from a local store in the onion beds, and I planted a lot of White and Yellow sets amongst the peppers in their beds. I chose Ring Master, Big Daddy, and Walla Walla because when I looked at the chart on the Dixondale site, I assumed that Casper is in the long-day zone. Casper is only marginally a long-day area where onions are concerned. My Ring Masters and Walla Wallas were total flops (my plot neighbor Butch did well with his Walla Wallas). Big Daddy did fine. It has a growth habit that keeps most of the fruit below ground. You don't know you have much you have until you dig them. The sets I bought did fine, thank you. Next season I will plant sets, Big Daddy, last season's Super Star, and possibly Candy (Barry did fine with them this season), all from Dixondale.

L E T T U C E

I need to spend more time tending lettuce next season. I also notice that we partners are not using much. Therefore I will cut the planting of lettuce from two boxes down to one.

H E R B S

It was a great year for growing herbs. I think that at home I will dedicate more planters to herbs and fewer to tomatoes and peppers. The neat thing about planters is that I can drag them around the patio until I find the perfect spot for the herbs.

L E E K S

I hope to never grow them again. They are a pain...high maintainence and weedy.

October 24, 2012

This note is in from Barry Franck.

ANNUAL REVIEW:

This year the some of the garden did better. The tomatoes and kohlrabi did not do as well but the rest did.

BROCCOLI:

Pacman was slow to start but once it got going it did very well 7"-9" heads and 4"-5" second heads.

CABBAGE:

Dynamo gave good medium size heads early in the season. Need to plant in the shade next year.

CAULIFLOWER

Snow Crown, most of the heads where small and turn the when the heat came on, but the ones the didn't produce early produce nice size heads 9'' to 12'' across. Need to plant in the shade next year.

CUCUMBERS:

Pickle, Cool Breeze first year growing. Heavy producing plant 80' row, got 8 bushels for it. Will be planting more of these and less slicers.

Slicer, Garden Slicer heavy producer of BIG cucumbers is good replacement for Sweet Slice. Had other I planted but didn't write them down so I don't know what they where. But some did well and others did not.

EGG PLANT:

Parks Whopper was a good producer of eggplants, and we got some nice ones this year.

KOHLRABI:

Kohlrabi: Kossak didn't do well this year in a new bed and in too hot conditions. But they are still in the garden as of 10/21/12 and are doing well in the cold weather.

OKRA: Clemson Spineless: First year growing. Didn't think it would grow here but it does. Will be growing more next year.

ONIONS:

Candy(white and red): very good onion for here got 3"-4" onions, first year trying them and also first year from Dixondale. Will be increasing the number of plants next year.

POTATOES: Red Nolan, and first year doing potatoes. Did 100' row got about 175-200 lbs.

PEPPERS SWEET NON-BELL:

Carmen, did well as always. Very heavy producer this year. Banana, tried again this year with good results. Heavy produce this year. Sweet Cherry, first year trying, did good.

PEPPERS SWEET BELL:

Parks Whopper, (favorite) did very well this year the best year yet. can get up to 6"-7" long and 5"-6" across. Valenia (orange) first year growing and it is a heavy produce of BIG peppers. Growing hint: these plants must be have support or will fall over and break the stem. Golden Summer (yellow) first growing it is a heavy producer of BIG peppers. Growing hint these plants must be have support or will fall over and break the stem.

PEPPERS HOT:

Hungarian Yellow wax, first year trying, good producer. Jalapeno, all time good pepper. did well this year. Poblano, first year trying don't think it like the where I planted the to much shade. Hot Cherry heavy produce will plant less next year.

TOMATOES CHERRY

Black Cherry, first year trying looks to be a good producer of grape size tomatoes. Sweet 100 all time good heavy producer or sweet cherry tomatoes. Yellow Pear all time good heavy producer of little bite size tomatoes.

TOMATOES LARGE:

Early Girl didn't do as well as past years. Parks Whopper, I don't think I got Whoopers this year. They didn't produce anything. Roma, produced only little ones this year.

Over the winter I will be trying out to see if Microgreens (human food) and Fodder (livestock food) will be good to grow here.

Between Season Notes 2012 - 2013

December 6, 2012

I am reviewing the last season in my mind and starting to plan for the next. One chord that has struck me is that, in our notes, both Barry Franck and I, thought that during the very hot season we just had some plants seemed to be begging for shade. I will try to give some shade to my plants that seem to need being cooler: beets, radish, cabbage, etc.

I grew beets in amongst my Cauliflower and Cabbage. I had one box of beets that out performed the other beets by a large amount. That particular box had been set up to grow carrots one year, and so it was extra high - meaning that the soil in it was extra deep. The beets loved it!

Generally squash had a great season. I am projecting a hot season for 2013 based upon the cycle of three cool summers folled by two hot ones. Next season should be another hot one. I am thinking of growing a lot of experimenting with new (for me) varieties of squash, while still keeping the good performers from past seasons. 2013 should be the Year of the Squash.

I will keep the tomato varieties I have, because they perform very well. I might add one more Determinate to the arsenal. I really don't feel a need to do a lot of experimenting because for the last 20 years I have been trying out at least three 'new' varieties a year.

I will keep the current line up of beans intact with one bed of experimental just to keep my hand in.

Partner Linda will be leaving us for South Dakota next season. That cuts one whole plot out from the total of five. Five plots nearly overwhelmed me this last season. I feel a need to cut down the number of plots I am using, so as to do a better job of growing. There were a lot of little details that did not get attended to this last season because I was so busy. The other big change will be that my wife, Judy, is going to take over one of the plots for a special project that will be announced in the coming months. So, I am going to have to try to grow food on three plots, where last year I had five. It is an interesting challenge, but possible. I will be gaining partner Paul Combe back next season, as he has retired. Partner Mark McAtee has also pledged to spend more time in the plots. I will need the help. More production is possible from the same ground. Paul's plot has traditionally grown corn. We will not grow corn next year but will instead build boxes and raise all kinds of things in that space, including tomatoes, cabbage, and squash.

So, how hot has it been?

Regular readers know that I keep a degree-day chart each year. I have chosen the base temperature of 50 degrees (F.) because I don't think plants do much growing below that temperature.

Degree days are the cumulative average temperatures above the set base (50 in this case). I always begin counting degree days on May 25, Casper's last average day of frost. If on May 25 the average temperature was 62 degrees, that would be 12 degrees above 50 and the cumulative total would be 12. If on May 26 the average temperature was 64 degrees, that is 14 degrees above 50 . I add that 14 to the 12 I already have, and the degree days for May 26 would be 26. Adding the degrees above the base together is what makes degree-days cumulative.

Here is the 2012 degree-day chart.

MAY 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 JUNE 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
HIGH 83 83 64 52 57 57 64 67 73 63 74 76 88 85 93 90 75 76 90
LOW 42 50 42 36 38 38 34 38 32 41 46 50 44 52 48 58 46 48 45
AVER. 2012 62.5 66.5 53 44 47.5 47.5 49 52.5 52.5 52 60 63 66 68.5 70.5 74 60.5 62 67.5
DD (50) -2.5 -5 -6 -3.5 -1 1 11 24 40 58.5 79 103 113.5 125.5 143
JUNE 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25
HIGH 80 68 75 78 89 84 88 83 93 91 83 72 86 97 98 100 100
LOW 46 39 40 41 45 43 47 45 53 48 49 47 37 47 52 52 64
AVER. 2012 63 53.5 57.5 59.5 67 63.5 67.5 64 73 69.5 65 59.5 61.5 72 75 76 82
DD (50) 156 159.5 167 186.5 203.5 217 234.5 248.5 271.5 291 306 325.5 337 359 384 410 442
JUNE 26 27 28 29 30 JULY 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
HIGH 98 93 97 97 93 100 92 99 94 91 83 86 88 90 95 94
LOW 55 36 47 57 60 57 63 63 58 58 52 48 48 52 50 55
AVER. 2012 76.5 64 72 77 76.5 78.5 77.5 81 76 74.5 67.5 67 68 71 72.5 74.5
DD (50) 468.5 482.5 504.5 531.5 558 586.5 614 645 671 695.5 713 730 748 769 791.5 816
JULY 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27
HIGH 92 98 92 92 91 91 96 99 99 98 95 94 93 84 88 97
LOW 51 52 66 65 67 57 51 64 63 62 57 61 65 56 52 54
AVER. 2012 71.5 75 79 78.5 79 74 73.5 81.5 81 80 76 77.5 79 70 70 75.5
DD (50) 837.5 862.5 891.5 920 949 973 996.5 1028 1059 1089 1115 1142.5 1171.5 1191.5 1211.5 1237
JULY 28 29 30 31 AUG 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
HIGH 95 86 90 95 96 94 79 83 97 91 93 96 92 95
LOW 57 61 52 62 61 57 52 43 45 56 57 50 51 61
AVER. 2012 76 73.5 71 78.5 78.5 75.5 65.5 63 71 73.5 75 73 71.5 78
DD (50) 1263 1286.5 1307.5 1336 1364.5 1390 1405.5 1418.5 1439.5 1463 1488 1511 1532.5 1560.5
AUGUST 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
HIGH 85 86 89 92 71 75 86 81 85 85 89 87 90 92
LOW 51 46 52 56 52 50 44 46 40 55 49 56 58 60
AVER. 2012 68 66 70.5 74 61.5 62.5 65 63.5 62.5 70 69 71.5 74 76
DD (50) 1578.5 1594.5 1615 1639 1650.5 1663 1678 1691.5 1704 1724 1743 1764.5 1788.5 1814.5
AUGUST 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 SEP

1

2 3 4 5 6
HIGH 89 89 96 95 97 91 91 87 85 86 87 87 79
LOW 40 46 59 68 63 49 53 61 56 53 49 38 45
AVER. 2012 64.5 67.5 77.5 81.5 80 70 72 74 70.5 69.5 68 63 62
DD (50) 1829 1846.5 1864 1895.5 1925.5 1945.5 1967.5 1991.5 2012 2031.5 2049.5 2062.5 2074.5
SEPTEMBER 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19
HIGH 72 79 88 90 79 72 77 84 86 81 70 80 75
LOW 45 38 37 57 50 37 37 31 44 43 40 37 43
AVER. 2012 58.5 58.5 62.5 73.5 64.5 54.5 57 57.5 65 62 55 58.5 59
DD (50) 2083 2091.5 2104 2127.5 2142 2146.5 2153.5 2161 2176 2188 2193 2201.5 2210.5

- - This year's Degree Days compared to past years - -

Degree Days Through June 30
Through July 15
Through July 31
Through August 15
Through August 31
Through Sept. 19
This
Period
Running
Total
This
Period
Running
Total
This
Period
Running
Total
This
Period
Running
Total
This
Period
Running
Total
This
Period
Season
Total
2012
558
558
362
920
416
1336
314.5
1650.5
317
1967.5
243
2210.5
2011
322.5
322.5
325.5
648
385.5
1033.5
305
1338.5
367
1705.5
195
1900.5
2010
364
364
228
592
264
856
394.5
1250.5
322
1572.5
175
1747.5
2009
327
327
258.5
585.5
256
841.5
267
1108.5
216
1324.5
254.5
1579
2008
292.5
292.5
281
573.5
387
960.5
289
1249.5
282.5
1532
96
1628
2007
431.5
431.5
348.5
780
400.5
1180.5
344.5
1525
278.5
1803.5
277.5
2081
2006
567.5
567.5
332.5
900
426.5
1326.5
308.5
1635
294.5
1929.5
131.5
2061
2005
333.5
333.5
297
630.5
360
990.5
256.5
1247
240
1487
242.5
1729.5
2004
314
314
270
584
269
853
275.5
1128.5
197.5
1326
246
1572
2003
401.5
401.5
307.5
709
399
1108
388
1496
317.5
1813.5
146.5
1960
2002
528
528
360
888
364
1252
278
1530
262
1792
248
2040

2012 Planting Guide

Click Here For 2009 Tomato Taste Test

= Rated for Taste
= Rated for Production

Type

2009/2010

Variety ...those in yellow are varieties we are trialing Seed Vigor Area
2011
Area
2012
Weeks to Set Out Start Dates Set Out/Sow
Tomatoes:
Indeterminates
Black Krim
Heirloom***

Indeterminate
High 9 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
Tomande
Heirloom***

Indeterminate
High 18 sq ft 36 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW
Prudens Purple
Heirloom***
Indeterminate
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW
Tigerella
Indeterminate
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
Tomatoes:
Determinates
Applause
Hybrid


Determinate
High 24 sq ft Zero sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW
Bush Champion II
Determinate
High 0 sq ft 30 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW
Valley Girl
Determinate
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW
Polbig
Determinate
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
Small Tomatoes:
Indeterminate
Black Plum
Heirloom***


Indeterminate
High 9 sq ft 4.5 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW
Sun Sugar (Orange)

Indeterminate
High 0 sq ft 4.5 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW
Sugar Lump (Red)
Heirloom***

Indeterminate
High 0 sq ft 4.5 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW
Yellow Pear
Heirloom***

Indeterminate
High 4.5 sq ft 4.5 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
Other Tomato Varieties: 18 sq ft
Total Areas for Tomatoes: 120 sq ft 141 sq ft
Garden Huckleberry Chichiquelite

Heirloom***

High 15 sq ft 0 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
Peppers Carmen
Sweet Horn
3,060 points

High 9 sq ft 9 sq ft 9 Mar 23 May 25
*NEW Early Thickset
Standard Bell
5,120 points
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Big Bertha Hybrid
Long Bell
1,420 points
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Cheyenne
Hot Cayenne
864 points
High 0 sq ft 6 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Tiburon
Hildly Hot Ancho
2,016 points
High 0 sq ft 6 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Aruba
Hildly Hot Cubanelle
1,440 points
High 0 sq ft 6 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Giant Thai Hot
Hot Thai
560 points
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Krimzon Lee
Hot Cone
1,080 points
High 0 sq ft 6 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Serano del Sol
Hot Jalapeno
616 points
High 0 sq ft 6 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Gourmet Sweet
Standard Bell
2,280 points
High 0 sq ft 6 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Margaret's Pepper
NonStandard Sweet Bell
2,520 points
High 9 sq ft 9 sq ft 9 Mar 23 May 25
Total Areas for Peppers: 72 81
Cauliflower Fremont
High 20 sq ft 27 sq ft 7 Apr 6 May 25
Cabbage Savoy Express
Heirloom***
High 9 sq ft 0 sq ft 6 Apr 13 May 25
Chinese Cabbage Minuet Medium 4.5 sq ft 0 sq ft 6 Apr 13 May 25
Baby Bok Choi Medium 4.5 sq ft 0 sq ft 6 Apr 13 May 25
*NEW Alcosa
minature cabbage
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
*NEW Caraflex
minature cabbage
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft 10 Mar 16 May 25
Pea Super Sugar Snap
Medium 51 sq ft 48 sq ft direct sow May 11 May 11
Cucumber Cool Breeze
Heirloom***
Medium 18 sq ft 18 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Diamant
Medium 18 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Sweet Success
Medium 9 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Sweeter Yet
Medium 9 sq ft 18 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Total Areas for Cucumbers: 54 54
Pumpkin*NEW Winter Luxury High 0 sq ft 16 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
*NEW Lumina High 12 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
*NEW Neon High 12 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
*GROWN IN PAST YEARS Autumn Gold High 0 sq ft 12 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
*NEW Racer High 0 sq ft 12 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Other Pumpkin Varieties: 0 sq ft
Total Areas for Pumpkins: 40 sq ft 40 sq ft
Summer Squash Sunburst Pattypan
Medium 6 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Green Zucchini
Medium 9 sq ft 9 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Goldrush Zucchini
Medium 9 sq ft 9 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Total Areas for Summer Squash: 24 sq ft 24 sq ft
Winter Squash Heart of Gold
Medium 12 sq ft 18 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Canesi - Butternut
Medium 9 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Table Ace Acorn
Medium 12 sq ft 12 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
*NEW Table Treat High 0 sq ft 12 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Sunshine


*GROWN IN PAST YEARS
Medium 9 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Lakota
Heirloom***
Medium 9 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Golden Hubbard
Medium 11 sq ft 0 sq ft 3 May 11 May 25
Total Areas for Winter Squash: 45 sq ft 64 sq ft
Watermelon Shiny Boy
Medium 6 sq ft 0 sq ft 4 May 11 June 1
*NEW Sangria High 0 sq ft 6 sq ft 9 Mar 23 May 25
*GROWN IN PAST YEARS Verona High 0 sq ft 8 sq ft 9 Mar 23 May 25
Bush Bean Roma II
- 18/18
Medium 21 sq ft 21 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 18
Rocdor Yellow
Medium 21 sq ft 21 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 18
Contender
Medium 45 sq ft 45 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 18
Henderson's Black Valentine
Heirloom***
High 9 square feet 9 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 18
*GROWN IN PAST YEARS Royal Burgandy
Heirloom***
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 19
Other Bean Varieties: 9 sq ft
Total Areas for Beans: 96 sq ft 90 sq ft
Broccoli Packman - buy plants locally
Medium 12 plants 10 plants NA NA May 1 - 18
Carrot Danvers
Heirloom***
High 9 sq ft 9 square feet direct sow NA May 1
Tendersweet
High 9 square feet 0 square feet direct sow NA May 1
*NEW Atomic Red
Heirloom***
High 0 sq ft 9 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 19
Sweetness II
High 9 square feet 9 square feet direct sow NA May 1
Total Areas for Carrots: 27 sq ft 27 sq ft
Celery Buy Plants Locally - 4/4 NA 4 plants ? NA Mar 16 June 2
Chard - 6/6 My Own Mix
Yellow, Red, Orange, Magenta

Medium 9 sq ft 9 sq ft direct sow NA May 25
Corn Silver Queen
Medium 188 plants 188 plants direct sow NA May 11-15
Leaf Lettuce Simpson Elite
Medium 3 sq ft 0 sq ft direct sow NA May 1
Green Ice
Medium 3 sq ft 0 sq ft1 direct sow NA May 1
Red Sails
Medium 3 sq ft 3 sq ft direct sow NA May 1
Head Lettuce Summertime
Medium 3 sq ft 3 sq ft direct sow NA May 1
Nevada (Batavian)
Medium 3 sq ft 3 sq ft direct sow NA May 1
Buttercrunch
Medium 3 sq ft 0 sq ft direct sow NA May 1
*NEW Crisp Mint Romaine

High 0 sq ft 3 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 19
*NEW Rouge Grenobloise (Batavian)

High 0 sq ft 3 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 19
Onion SuperStar Plants
Dixon Dale Farms
Medium 22 sq ft 0 sq ft direct sow NA May 1
*NEW Big Daddy

High 0 sq ft 22 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 19
*NEW Ring Master

High 0 sq ft 22 sq ft Direct Sow NA May 1 - 19
Leek Lancelot Plants - 5/5
Dixon Dale Farms
NA 20 sq ft 20 sq ft direct sow NA May 1
Beet Detroit
Heirloom***

*GROWN IN PAST YEARS
NA 10 tires 10 tires direct sow NA May 1 - 18
Radish White Icicle - ? NA ? Area 2011 May 1 - 18
Salad Rose - ? NA ? Area 2011 May 1 - 18
Long Red - ? NA ? Area 2011 May 1 - 18
German Giant - ? NA ? Area 2011 May 1 - 18
Herb Basil - Summerlong - ? NA ?
Basil - Greek - ? NA ?
Basil - Spicy Saber - ? NA ?
Chives - Common - ? NA ?
Cilantro - ? NA ?
Fennel - ? NA ?
Marjaram, Sweet - ? NA ?
Oregano, Greek - ? NA ?
Parseley - Extra Curled Dwarf - ? NA ?
Rosemary - ? NA ?
Sage, Common - ? NA ?
Thyme, Common - ? NA ?
Tarragon if possible - ? NA ?
Lavender if possible - ? NA ?
Gourd Big Birdhouse - ? NA ?
Little Birdhouse - ? NA ?
Easter Eggs - ? NA ?
Flowers ? NA 2 tires

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