2023 Spring Garden Plans

Charleston Belle Sweet Bell Pepper

67 days. (green > red) [A gardening breakthrough: the first nematode-resistant bell pepper. Introduced by SESE 1998.] Plants have a compact growth habit and reach a height of 4 ft. 3 x 5 in.

Mary raised seedlings in the greenhouse.

Cajun Belle Pepper – This is the first time to plant this variety.

Bought one Bonnies Pot at Hurley F&F on 4/28/2023 that has two plants. Separated them. This 2010 All America winner is just plain cute, too. We love the way the little peppers ripen from lime green to orange to red. You can eat them at any stage, but the longer they stay on the plant, the warmer they get. Plants are robust and disease tolerant yet relatively small, growing about 2 feet tall by 2 feet wide. They’re ideal for small gardens or containers. Each fruit is 2 to 3 Inches Long, with 3 to 4 lobes to make a small, thin walled blocky miniature pepper. Allowed to remain on the plant to maturity, they turn glossy red and grow increasingly flavorful.

Pepper Note All peppers are sensitive to excessive nitrogen fertilization. Too much fertilization will cause blossoms and small pods to drop off. Hot daytime temperatures and cool nighttime temperatures also cause blossom drop. From here.

Cubanelle Pepper – This is the first time to plant this variety.

Bought one Bonnies Pot at Hurley F&F on 4/28/2023. This yellow-green to red tapered fruit is prized for a sweet, mild flesh that is growing in popularity because of its rich flavor and pretty colors for frying and cooking. The thin-walled pepper is especially suited for quick cooking. Popular in dishes of Spanish, Italian, and Slavic descent, many cooks prefer it to bell types. In the garden, Cubanelle peppers are unique, often growing in imperfect shapes and changing color from green/yellow to shades of orange to red. Don’t be surprised if the some of the peppers curl and twist a bit. No two seem to ever be alike — it’s part of of their charm.

Cayenne, Carolina Hot Pepper

70 days. (green > red) [1986, Clemson U. & USDA] 2-3 times hotter than regular Cayennes! Heavy yields of 1 x 5 in. fruits, larger than most Cayenne peppers. Excellent nematode resistance. 3 ft. plants.

Poinsett 76 Cucumber

[Developed by Clemson and Cornell.] An improved version of Poinsett having multiple disease tolerance. Produces dark green cukes 7-8 in. long and 2½ in. in diameter. The best open-pollinated slicer for the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic coastal areas as a disease-resistant main crop garden variety. Min Germination temp is 60 with an optimum of 95°.

National Pickling Cucumber – This is the first time to plant this variety.

National Pickling Cucumber is the standard pickling cucumber variety developed by the National Pickle Packers Association. An heirloom that’s crisp, crunchy and productive for many harvests.  Cucumis sativus. 60 days to maturity. Min Germination temp is 60 with an optimum of 95°.

Cajun Jewel Okra

53 days. [Introduced 1989 by SESE. Local favorite in Cajun country since the 1950s.] Dwarf-type, 2½-4 ft. tall spineless plants produce an early crop of tender 1 in. diameter pods up to 8 in. long. Good flavor. Widely adapted.

  • Min Germination temp is 60 with an optimum of 95°.
  • Fertilizing Per SEVG – Sidedress 3 to 4 weeks after planting then 6 to 8 weeks after planting.

Ratooning okra will allow the plants to rejuvenate and produce a crop in the fall, when okra prices are
generally higher. Cut plants back using a mower, leaving 6 to 12 inches of each plant above the ground. Re-fertilize with 15-0-14, 8-0-24, or 13-0-44 to encourage re-growth.
From SEVG.

Butternut Squash

Plants are to be thinned to 2 to 3 feet apart in a row per SEVG pg 83.

Dark Star Zucchini – This is the first time to plant this variety.

Abundant quantities of slender, shiny dark green fruits on large, drought-tolerant, disease-resistant plants with an open habit and smooth leaves that make harvesting easier. Pick daily…best yields. Although this variety was bred for dry farming in the Southwest, many market farmers here in the Southeast praise Dark Star as an outstanding new OP zucchini.

Plants are to be thinned to 1.5 to 2.5 feet apart in the row per SEVG.

Dunja Zucchini

Organic, early, powdery mildew resistant. A high yielder of dark-green, straight zucchinis. Open plants and short spines make for an easy harvest. Sets fruit well with minimal pollinator activity… Intermediate resistance to powdery mildew, papaya ringspot virus, watermelon mosaic virus, and zucchini yellow mosaic virus.

Plants are to be thinned to 1.5 to 2.5 feet apart in the row per SEVG.

Squash Grandprize F1 – This is the first time to plant this variety.

This green stem straightneck is a glossy, deep yellow color, producing reliable yields of high quality, 6-7” long fruit. Erect, semi-open plants have reduced spines and enhanced disease package, including ZYMV, WMV, and powdery mildew. Seeding depth: 1 – 1.5 inches. Germination days: 6 – 12 days.

Plants are to be thinned to 1.5 to 2.5 feet apart in the row per SEVG.

General Advice from our 2019 page – Preventing squash vine borer damage usually requires treating the base of the plants with a residual insecticide spray at the time the moths are flying (early to mid June). Sprays provide a much better barrier against borer attacks than do dusts. Home gardeners can apply Sevin, permethrin, bifenthrin, esfenvalerate, spinosad or other labeled home garden insecticide.  From here. The following is a bit different and from the same site but a different page. Treating the base of the plants with either malathion or rotenone works to control borers before they enter the stems not after the fact. 

Cheers Cabbage 

Cheers Cabbage is a hybrid, disease-resistant cabbage variety that’s ideal for all garden sizes and all levels of production. Brassica oleracea var capitata. 75 days to maturity. 100 seeds per packet

Green Magic Broccoli 

Green Magic Broccoli is a heat-tolerant broccoli that can be grown later in spring and earlier in fall than most varieties. Great flavor and uniform production. Brassica oleracea var italica. 55 days to maturity. 100 seeds per packet.


  • G-90 in ten 60-ft long rows.
  • Did not hill. Planted on almost level ground 10 rows of G90 corn over 8-8-8 with 1 Tbsp of zinc sulfate per row under the soil that the cultivator pull over it.
  • Sowed with the modified Hoss Seed Plate No. 6

MS Silver Crowder Peas

  • See post of 5/4/2022 here.
  • From HarvestToTable.com – “Sow Southern peas 4 weeks after the last average frost date in spring when the soil has warmed to at least 60°F. Southern peas prefer warm to hot weather, with air temperatures between 70° and 95°F–most days exceeding 85°F.” 
  • From Clemson.edu Southern peas are a warm-season crop requiring warm soil temperature (at least 60 °F) for the best germination and emergence. Many pests and diseases will plague Southern peas planted into cool soils. Four to six seeds per foot of row should be planted three-quarters to 1½ inches deep in rows 20 to 42 inches apart. The older vining-type cultivars of Southern peas should be planted with only one to two seeds per foot of row. Control weeds early in the season with shallow cultivation. Later the peas will shade out most weeds. 
  • HOSS Seed plate No. 6 at 1 inch deep
  • From MS State Extension
    • At least 27 lb P/acre and 40 lb K/acre are recommended on soils of medium fertility but individual soils will vary in fertilizer requirements. Band fertilizer 3 to 4 inches deep and 2 to 3 inches away from the seed, or broadcast and disc in all fertilizer, including nitrogen, before planting. For 40 lb/ac that is too small to measure so spread 1-2 pints per row of 0-0-60.
  • From Ruppseeds.com Planting Guidelines – Peas
    • Approximate Seeds per Pound: 2,200 – 2,400
    • Seeding Rate per Acre by Weight: 41.2 – 90.7 lbs
    • Seeding Rate Seeds per 1,000 foot of Row: 6,000 – 12,000
    • Seeding Rate per Acre in M (1,000): 90.8 – 217.8 M
    • Seed or Plant Spacing In Row: 1 – 2″
    • Seed or Plant Spacing Between Rows: 30 – 36″
    • Seed or Plant Spacing Depth: 1.5 – 2″

Pink Eye Top Pick

  • Bought at Hurley F&F 4/28/2023

Cherry Belle Radish

  • Bought at Hurley F&F 4/28/2023

Kentucky Wonder Beans

  • Bought two packets from Isla’s Garden Seed Co. as few had them in stock.
  • Sowed with the dribble 6 inches apart and 1 inch deep on 6/27/2023 in rows where cabbage and other things did not make it.
  • Water deeply and regularly. Weed carefully as they have shallow roots.
  • Bush beans mature all at the same time and must be harvested at once. If allowed to sit longer than a day or two, the flavor suffers.
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