Going to start a garden
Finally, have a place (starting this weekend) with enough room, actual dirt, the right temperature and enough rain and irrigation to start a garden. Tomatos are, of course, the first with some squash, watermelons and green beans coming next. I have been here without a garden space for so long, anything else you can think of that would grow well up about 500+ feet - sorry Onika, can't grow the mushrooms for you (or can I?).
How is the soil quality? Since its the first time and slightly experimental, try root vegetables such as potatoes, carrots and onions. Lettuce and cabbage, and fresh peas are great. Might try corn too. You will have a wide variety of vegi's than and a good sense of what does well and what doesn't!
Check which zone you are in and go to a garden shop site. They list vegetables and fruit by zone. You can also find other info on site such as this about what ph the soil should have and how to treat it if it is not quite right.
I found some good info on the www.millernurseruies.com site. I am sure there are some which focus on tropical zones as well.
thanks, all. Maybe at a get together in a year or so I can provide the fresh veggies 🙂
The biggest problem I’ve encountered is insects. Caterpillars can devour a plant in a few hours. You should check your plants early every morning and again in the late afternoon. Look on the undersides of the leaves, as some insects feed there.
If you grow any root crops, you’ll probably want to sift the rocks out with a wire mesh so they don’t deform the vegetables.
The USDA should have seeds of vegetable cultivars that grow well in the Virgin Islands.
Gardening in the Caribbean by Iris Bannochie and Marilyn Light is a good, basic book for the USVI. You should be able to find it at a bookstore on St. Thomas.
Thanks for the offer of the mushroom varieties, but I have resigned myself to Fruit Bowl and Gourmet Gallery. 🙂
As for your query, Petrus is actively growing tomatoes and squash for now. Since we live in a rocky part of the island (ok, like most of the island), this is kind of an experiment. He planted the seeds right where our grey water runs out, so that they will constantly be watered in the drier months. Of course, he has become a little bit of a dictator when it comes to what laundry/body soaps I can use. I had to officially say goodby to my clorox bleach. So, if you see me with yellowy clothes, ask me how the tomatoes are doing. Let us know how th green beans turn out...we may give that a try next.