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Toledo Farmers Market

June 15, 2012
By Dawn Troutner , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

This Footloose Friday there were nine vendors to welcome the large crowd. The Werner's had the crowd around them before market started. They brought large kohlrabi. Some of the other items available for purchase were radishes, green onions, rhubarb, fresh herbs, garlic, spinach, lettuce, peas, eggs, bakery, jams, jellies, dried herbs, popcorn and plants.

We have received some much needed moisture for our gardens. I can finally start to row up my veggies. You would think growing vegetables is easy. All a vegetable plant needs is light, food, water, and warmth. But the amount of each of these given to a plant will determine the success of your harvest. Light is one of the most important elements in growing your vegetables. Most vegetables need an average of 6 hours of sunlight. If your garden is shady, leaf and root vegetables (lettuce, peas, carrots, kale, swiss chard) will tolerate some shade. Vegetables that produce fruit (tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and squash) are the ones that need full sun.

The soil provides a place for the plant roots to grow and draw up nutrients (food). Plants need nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium and micro nutrients. If you feed your veggies, they will feed you.

Article Photos

Dawn Troutner
Toledo Market Master

Vegetable plants need 1-2 inches of water each week especially from mid June to mid August. Too little water will not let plant roots grow deep and strong enough to gather nutrients for good growth. Too much water will saturate the soil, not allowing the plant air and space needed to grow. For the best growing veggies, it is important to know how much water your plants are getting. Watch your veggies grow, know your soil conditions, and keep an eye on the weather and learn which plants need more water than others need. Place a small can in 4 different areas of your garden, turn on the overhead sprinkler for 1 hour and then measure the amount of water in your cans. This is an easy way to measure how much water your garden is getting.

Which way is the best way to water? Overhead sprinkling is probably still the most popular, however drip, trickle, or seeping hoses are becoming more common. The best time to water is before 11am or after 4 pm.

The air and soil temperature is most important for seed germination. Some seeds do best in cool soil(lettuce, peas, radishes) other need warm soil (tomatoes, squash, corn) to grow.

So it takes more than a green thumb to make your garden grow. See you at market.



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