An experiment in Hugelkulture in containers

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Maybe you are correct about his intellect but sometimes knowledge is a two edged sword. Knowledge loses a lot of its value when there is no experience to reinforce it. And in my mind he has absolutely no experience whatsoever. At least not in the gardening community. I saw the Twitter account of his about Sunflower Taxonomy and something about Plant Radiation. Made absolutely no sense to me but what can I say? I am just and old Texas Redneck who barely got out of high school.
 
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Good Will Hunting? OK. Robin Williams on the Bench talking experience? Ok. Still, I like his efforts. I know you are concerned about posts relative to plants but not me. Its only the romantic posts that ever matter to me, because try as he might -Sir Elton John could only adopt a child from some God forsaken agency. I am still traumatized from watching this "Rocketman" movie with the ladies last night. @Marck are you a pollinator? 74 btw
 

Meadowlark

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Update:

In order to gain more data for this feasibility study, I'm adding another three tubs and rearranging in the garden bringing the current configuration to:

Tub 1: celebrity tomato
Tub 2: jalapeno pepper
Tub 3: green Bell pepper
Tub 4: butter nut squash
Tub 5: black beauty egg plant
Tub 6: okra

The data will be collected in an Excel spreadsheet and summarized as follows:
PlantHPGSPPR
Tub 1 celebrity tomato
5​
10​
0.5​
Tub 2 jap pepper
#DIV/0!​
Tub 3 Green Bell
#DIV/0!​
Tub 4 butter nut squash
#DIV/0!​
Tub 5 BB Egg Plant
#DIV/0!​
Tub 6 okra
#DIV/0!​
Composite
5​
10​
0.5​

HP = Hugelkulture Productivity, lbs
GSP = Garden Soil Productivity, lbs
PR = Productivity Ratio

The PR is derived by dividing the HP/GSP with a target of at least .5 for feasibility.


Data collected will include 1) Hugelkultur productivity in pounds, number, and date of harvest for each tub, 2) Garden soil production in pounds, number, and date of harvest for each garden control plant.

Documentation photos will be taken of all data collection.
 
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Update:

In order to gain more data for this feasibility study, I'm adding another three tubs and rearranging in the garden bringing the current configuration to:

Tub 1: celebrity tomato
Tub 2: jalapeno pepper
Tub 3: green Bell pepper
Tub 4: butter nut squash
Tub 5: black beauty egg plant
Tub 6: okra

The data will be collected in an Excel spreadsheet and summarized as follows:
PlantHPGSPPR
Tub 1 celebrity tomato
5​
10​
0.5​
Tub 2 jap pepper
#DIV/0!​
Tub 3 Green Bell
#DIV/0!​
Tub 4 butter nut squash
#DIV/0!​
Tub 5 BB Egg Plant
#DIV/0!​
Tub 6 okra
#DIV/0!​
Composite
5​
10​
0.5​

HP = Hugelkulture Productivity, lbs
GSP = Garden Soil Productivity, lbs
PR = Productivity Ratio

The PR is derived by dividing the HP/GSP with a target of at least .5 for feasibility.


Data collected will include 1) Hugelkultur productivity in pounds, number, and date of harvest for each tub, 2) Garden soil production in pounds, number, and date of harvest for each garden control plant.

Documentation photos will be taken of all data collection.
I am of the age and opinion that my back will make my choices for me but do have fun with it and side drains rock!
 

Meadowlark

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Update: Month one

PlantStatus/Comments
Tub 1: celebrity tomato


Both the HK and control plants are going great. Lots of blooms on both. Very strong growth on both.
Tub 2: jalapeno pepper


Slight edge in growth to the control plant but both are setting fruit now.
Tub 3: green bell pepper


Slight edge to the HK plant as winds have hit it less than the control plant, but both are flowering
Tub 4: butter nut squash


Excellent growth in the HK plant and maybe some wind resistance affecting the control plant
Tub 5: black beauty egg plant

Insect damage on the control plant fairly heavy. Not so on the HK plant. Insect spray w/spinosad
Tub 6: okratoo many cold nights for germination. Will try again next week

Photos of any/all available upon request.
 

Meadowlark

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Update: Month two

PlantCurrent
PR
Status/Comments
Tub 1: celebrity tomato-Both the HK and control plants have set at least 10 fruits on each. Control plant and fruit somewhat larger
Tub 2: jalapeno pepper1.1Multiple peppers harvested on both. Slight edge in weight to the HK plant
Tub 3: green bell pepper-Multiple peppers on each plant with plants about equal
Tub 4: butter nut squash-Excellent growth continues with multiple squash on both plants; Control plant slightly larger
Tub 5: black beauty egg plant-Excellent growth on both plants with edge in growth to the HK plant
Tub 6: okra-Growing about equally.

note: PR = production ratio = weight of HK harvest/weight of control plant harvest. Goal ratio > .5

The experiment is moving into the harvest phase now with all plants showing fruit and likely month three will show results in all plants in addition to the jalapeno peppers which have already produced 5 peppers each from the HK plant and the control pant.

It is very apparent now that the so called drainage problems are not a problem at all...in fact if anything the HK plants drain too fast and need additional water.

Month three next up.
 
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The reason Marck is right, is this: would you judge the merits of growing in tubs by growing in the ground & growing in a hugelkulture tub?
Of course not.
In order to evaluate the different methods, you'd try to keep everything else as similar as possible; you do NOT deliberately include other variables, otherwise they invalidate the results.
I would have suspected that hugekulture in containers isn't great because of the nitrogen sequestration by the decomposing wood.
 
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The reason Marck is right, is this: would you judge the merits of growing in tubs by growing in the ground & growing in a hugelkulture tub?
Of course not.
In order to evaluate the different methods, you'd try to keep everything else as similar as possible; you do NOT deliberately include other variables, otherwise they invalidate the results.
I would have suspected that hugekulture in containers isn't great because of the nitrogen sequestration by the decomposing wood.
The reason is NOT to see which grows better or produces more. The reason is to see if growing in containers is FEASIBLE and if production is within 50% of inground plantings. Marck could never understand this. All he understood was us not doing a scientific treatise. We already know about inground production and regular container production but we know nothing about hugelkulture. And the reason I want to know is because of me getting old and unable to perform the actual labor involved in inground gardening and regular container gardening. As an example, I am finding that lifting and toting a 10 gallon container of soil is becoming more and more difficult. And with the hugelkulture method the actual weight of growing medium in a 10 gallon container is considerably less than a 10 gallon container of garden soil and also less than a soil compost mix.
 

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The reason Marck is right, is this: would you judge the merits of growing in tubs by growing in the ground & growing in a hugelkulture tub?
Of course not.
He was wrong, just as you are wrong!! I am NOT judging the merits of growing in tubs by growing in the ground...your words.

I am assessing the feasibility of using Hügelkultur techniques in tubs to lighten the container load and still produce at an acceptable rate...the rate I set was 50% of an inground plant. I have zero interest in 200-pound containers and with HK my 20 + gallon containers are about 50 to 55 pounds instead of 200 pounds.

He was wrong about the experiment intent, he was totally wrong about the drainage, and thankfully he is no longer posting on this thread!!
 
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The reason is NOT to see which grows better or produces more. The reason is to see if growing in containers is FEASIBLE and if production is within 50% of inground plantings. Marck could never understand this. All he understood was us not doing a scientific treatise. We already know about inground production and regular container production but we know nothing about hugelkulture. And the reason I want to know is because of me getting old and unable to perform the actual labor involved in inground gardening and regular container gardening. As an example, I am finding that lifting and toting a 10 gallon container of soil is becoming more and more difficult. And with the hugelkulture method the actual weight of growing medium in a 10 gallon container is considerably less than a 10 gallon container of garden soil and also less than a soil compost mix.
That's fine, you can try it as an experiment, but the stuff in the ground is irrelevant, as far as the experiment goes, as it's different in too many ways, to provide a baseline.
 
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He was wrong, just as you are wrong!! I am NOT judging the merits of growing in tubs by growing in the ground...your words.

I am assessing the feasibility of using Hügelkultur techniques in tubs to lighten the container load and still produce at an acceptable rate...the rate I set was 50% of an inground plant. I have zero interest in 200-pound containers and with HK my 20 + gallon containers are about 50 to 55 pounds instead of 200 pounds.

He was wrong about the experiment intent, he was totally wrong about the drainage, and thankfully he is no longer posting on this thread!!
But you said, in the OP, & I quote
"Two control plants and two hugelkulture plants in the same soil (Celebrity tomato in one container and jalapeno pepper in the other) will be the basis of this experiment. Produce weights and growing cycle will be compared."

They are not controls. Hugelkulture in the ground would have been a control, but as a professor, you should know that words have meanings, & that the plants in the ground are not control plants.
If you had grown in two further tubs, just with compost you may have got an idea, but with the rquired different watering & feeding regimes required just by growing in tubs, rather than the ground, by the way restricting the roots of capsicums in tubs can restrict the plants, by the uncontrollable nature of the weather, you are going to learn only if you can grow in hugelkulture tubs, and the ground plants immediately become redundant.
 
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That's fine, you can try it as an experiment, but the stuff in the ground is irrelevant, as far as the experiment goes, as it's different in too many ways, to provide a baseline.
Hugelkulture will NOT be feasible if we cannot get 50% of what inground plantings provide. So, inground plantings are relevant. Otherwise how would we know the percentage of production of HK.
 

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That's fine, you can try it as an experiment, but the stuff in the ground is irrelevant..

Incredibly presumptuous for you to grant permission to something well underway. I don't need your permission to do the experiment, nor is the garden production irrelevant. It is the basis for comparison.

You are most welcome to ignore this ongoing experiment and the results.

... you are going to learn only if you can grow in hugelkulture tubs, and the ground plants immediately become redundant.

Feasibility: Capable of being accomplished or brought about.

I defined the feasibility threshold as production from a Hügelkultur tub > 50% of the production from an identical plant(s) in my garden soil. Most folks can understand that...but again if you can not, you are most welcome to ignore this thread and the results.
 
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Hugelkulture will NOT be feasible if we cannot get 50% of what inground plantings provide. So, inground plantings are relevant. Otherwise how would we know the percentage of production of HK.
Haven't you been gardening long enough to KNOW what you can get out of the ground?
Both you & Meadowlark are excellent experienced gardeners, I'd expect you would know.
I'd also expect you make yourselves aware of the different & quantitative effects that variables bring to hugelkulture, like nutrition/water storage etc. So you won't be treating like for like.
What happens if you get rains in Texas like you did a couple of years back?
Your tubs will drain much better, but what about nutrient leaching?
As we all know, gardening isn't stand back & see, it's very much interactive, both pro-actively or re-actively.
Would you watch your hugelkuture tub plants die if you had to do nothing to save your plants in the ground?
I'd assume not.
 
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Incredibly presumptuous for you to grant permission to something well underway. I don't need your permission to do the experiment, nor is the garden production irrelevant. It is the basis for comparison.

You are most welcome to ignore this ongoing experiment and the results.



Feasibility: Capable of being accomplished or brought about.

I defined the feasibility threshold as production from a Hügelkultur tub > 50% of the production from an identical plant(s) in my garden soil. Most folks can understand that...but again if you can not, you are most welcome to ignore this thread and the results.
I understand it perfectly.
A feasability study is not an experiment, but it's a far better name for what you're doing.
I have just answered a post of Chuck's on this matter, but it's pertinent to this post too, in the main.
Further, to say that you "CAN" do something is not the same as saying you "MAY" do something.
"Can" means it is within your capabilities, & has nothing to do with the granting of permission, so kindly CAN the shirtiness.
 

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