At a complete loss

pjrdnApril 19, 2012

I started my vegetable garden with a 50/50 mix of soil (sandy soil, we're in florida) from my land and compost that were in bags. I used about 5 bags of earth gro and 4 bags of black kow.I mixed it well and waited a week before planting my seedlings which I soaked to jumpstart germination. All was well until a week ago. I started to do alot of research but there are so many issues that I can't narrow it down to one. I need some help.

1) The plants began to get yellow spots on the leaves, I looked under them with a magnifying glass for mites (yes I looked under each one took me 3 hrs!) I read somewhere that 9 parts water to milk is good for the plants immune system so I sprayed them with that hoping it would help them out. Well it didn't.

2) I stopped watering for about 4 days, figured maybe I was drowning them. I was watering them everyday up until that point for about 5 minutes a day. Anyway, they looked thirsty so I watered heavy one day, two days after that I see mushrooms, a set of them that were red and a set of them that wither away almost immediately when the sun comes out.

3) Today some of my plants have bottom leaves that are completely yellow. I read that this could be due to lack of nitrogen. Confused cause I fertilized these at one point with Dolomite.

4)My dh told me yesterday that my corn was doing well had red stems. I was immediately alarmed because I read somewhere that red stems was a bad sign, I noticed that my cabbage and collard plants have red stems, is this normal or am I paranoid?

I'm a new gardener btw, I'm about give up, lol. I've been researching this but all of these symptoms are throwing me for a loop and I'm afraid of killing my garden by trying something else.

Thanks for any help in advance.

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It would help if we know what you are growing in there.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 3:36PM
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Relax. You probably are smothering your plants with love. When you water, do it so that the soil is wet to at least 6 inches. Once a week is usually enough. Remember that we old timers depended entirely on rainfall. Dolomite is a soil conditioner not a fertilizer. Wont do any harm but does not contain any Nitrogen, phosphorus or potassium. You may need a bit of nitrogen, but likely it is your watering pattern. Lots of corn varieties have red stems, some cabbage. Collards are a winter vegetable here, so I don't know if some have red stems in the spring.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 3:40PM
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Too much love,how could that be a bad thing, j/k :) I believe you are right, it's just it's my first REAL attempt at having a garden that actually yields something. I'm growing veggies btw. Had no idea Dolomite was not a fertilizer, someone told me it was. Thanks for the advice. I got a ph kit today so maybe I can find out what I need. My soil is neutral so that seems good...I think.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 5:08PM
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If they are not vigorous after you alter the watering schedule, you may want to add fertilizer. Miracle Grow is a quick fix, that is available in either regular or Organic formulations. Always follow directions on the label. Corn and cabbage in particular require a lot of nitrogen.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 7:19PM
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zzackey(8b GA)

I would suggest you get your soil tested at your local agricultural agency. Those soil test kits aren't that reliable. If you haven't used it maybe you can take itback? Please don't give up!! Gardening is a learning experiment. You will get great job and much better food than you would ever get in a store!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 7:57PM
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grandad_2003(9A/sunset 28)

I have found that one of the joys of gardening is in overcoming the failures experienced in previous years, and I've had my share. Kudos to those who choose farming as a profession/way of life. A failure to these folk take on a far greater meaning than they do for me.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 10:16AM
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