Into the Earthbox – Transplanting

Well, it went from being a bit nippy at night to being nice. Of course there was no in between. There never is in Phoenix. I also slacked off on hardening off the plants, never getting them outside again until just now.

As planned, I put one of each variety in the Earthbox for a total of four varieties, 2 Earthboxes. I have backups of each out in the sun now. I definitely may need them. The Bali was small and weak – not sure it is going to make the transplant. The Golden Monarch was a bit better, but we’ll see. The Tula is strong, vibrant and seemed to like the transplant very much. The Green Zebra looks like it will fare pretty well.

About 10 days ago, I took a Monarch and a Tula to my Dad – as he likes to try things in the ground. Neither survived as he moved them around trying to harden them off. They were just too weak and fragile.

Adding Lime to the Earthbox

Adding Lime to the Earthbox

For the details on the Earthbox preparation it was pretty easy. I dug in and loosened all the potting mix that was in there until it was light and fluffy.

I mixed in a bit of hydrated lime, since tomatoes are going in.

Slow Release Fertilizer in Earthbox

Slow Release Fertilizer in Earthbox

Then it was topped off with a bit of Miracle-Gro Potting Mix to mound the center. On the other side of the mound from the planting locales I added a strip of pellet style, slow-release fertilizer as per Earthbox recommendations. Neither the Miracle-Gro nor fertilizer are organic this go around. I’ll try that next year I think.

I then cut open a white kitchen trash bag and tied it over the container, to keep weeds out and moisture in. Holes had to be cut to get over the stakes and watering pipe.  Easy enough. Tying it with some sisal gardening twine, I began to realize that the couple of dollars Earthbox wants for the elastic covers is probably worth it – and I will definitely order some for fall planting.

Cutting a couple of “X” slits into the corners away from the fertilizer and dropping the peat pots in was the last step. Wait, not the last step. Watering them in from the top and then filling the reservoir was the last step. Now I wait.

Update: It has been 24 hours and all transplants seem to be adapting to the boxes well, but of course clouds and cold have snuck in.  I brought the other seedlings back in.

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