Thursday, February 25, 2010

We had a great turn out the other evening for our Blueberry, Blackberry and Raspberry workshop.  I thought I would take this time to post some of the information that was presented the other night.

Dr. John Strang from UK, has been working with these fruit crops for a number of years and provided me with his best of the best varieties for each of the following crops:

Blueberries:   Early - Duke, Spartan, & for wet heavy soil sites Patriot
                        Mid - Toro, Bluecrop, Chandler
                        Later - Nelson, Darrow, Ozarkblue, Elliott

Blackberries:  Thorny - Chickasaw & Kiowa
                      Thornless Erect - Natchez & Ouachita or Apache 
                      Thornless semi erect - Triple Crown

Raspberries: - Black - Jewel
                      Red, June bearing - Lauren
                      Red, Fall bearing - Caroline, Autumn Britten
                      Purple - Royalty

We have some really thorough publications on the web that can really help you with the decision making.  The Growing Blueberries in Kentucky is an excellent guide to blueberry production.  Pay special attention to the preperation part of the publication because establishing blueberries is a bit tricky.  Also you will want to take a look at the our Blackberries and Raspberry production publication.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Upcoming Horticulture classes at the Nelson County Extension Office.

February 18, Growing Vegetables for the Market and the Kentucky New Crops Opportunities Center will be presented by Dr. Tim Coolong and Christy Cassidy. They will talk about varieties, timing, and the various marketing options available to growers. The program will begin at 1:00 p.m. and finish by 4:00 p.m. Call the office at 348-9204 to register, as space will be limited.

February 22, Growing Blueberries, Blackberries and Raspberries at Home; will be from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Nelson County Extension Office. Call the office at 348-9204 to register, as space will be limited.

March 3, Starting Seeds at Home with Dr. Rebecca Schnelle from 3:30 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. Call the office at 348-9204 to register, as space will be limited.

March 3, Backyard Greenhouse 101: From construction to growing with Dr. Rebecca Schnelle beginning at 6:30 p.m. till 8:00 p.m. Call the office at 348-9204 to register, as space will be limited.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

If your are the do it yourself type then you should be thinking about starting seeds for the garden indoors right now.  Aside from timing the correct amount of light is the most important step. Below you will see some good quidelines for proper lighting.  But first I would like to say a few words about timing.  Depending on the time of season you can transplant outdoors and the lenght of time required to germinate will determine when to start the seeds.  Frost free date is a good guide line and around here that would be an average of May 6th.   For example tomatoes should be started 6 to 8 weeks before transplanting. Here that would be the middle of March as an indoor starting date.  Try this Johnny's Seed Calculator just change the frost free date to relflect ours and plan away.   

1. Light.

After germination, plants need a maximum of light for optimum growth. Light may be natural or from fluorescent lamps. If sunlight is used, seed flats should be placed as close to the windows as possible without being too cool. If fluorescent lamps are used, an area 2 X 4 feet would require about four 40-watt fluorescent bulbs. Special plant growing lamps may be used, but cool-white or warm-white fluorescent lamps will be satisfactory. Lamps should be placed 6-12 inches above plants and turned on at least 18 hours each day. For most plants, 24 hours of light would be best; however, some plants (tomato, geranium) may develop a light green appearance. A small time clock can be used to turn lights on and off.