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Old 04-13-2008, 04:18 PM   #1
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Salsa garden


I want to plant a couple of 3-4 ft raised garden beds so that I can plant some veggies for salsa. I can't seem to find any information on how many plants would be needed. I realize I will be canning the majority of it. I was thinking 3-4 tomato plants, 4 pepper plants 2 jalepeno plants..,Anyone with experience with this?

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Old 04-15-2008, 07:11 PM   #2
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Salsa garden


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Originally Posted by cibula11 View Post
I want to plant a couple of 3-4 ft raised garden beds so that I can plant some veggies for salsa. I can't seem to find any information on how many plants would be needed. I realize I will be canning the majority of it. I was thinking 3-4 tomato plants, 4 pepper plants 2 jalepeno plants..,Anyone with experience with this?
I love raised bed gardening. A common mistake first time users of raised beds make is that they still plant everything in rows as if they were going to harvest everthing mechanically.

If you can space a plant 12" apart in one direction, you can space it 12" apart in another. That way you can plant more intensively. For the number of plants you mentioned, you could get everything in relatively small space by interplanting your plants. This will also keep out weeds and will keep the ground cooler to lessen your watering requirements.

If you're making salsa, don't forget the onions and cilantro!


Two questions:

1. Where do you live and what's your growing season like?
2. How long are your beds going to be?

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Old 04-16-2008, 11:17 AM   #3
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Salsa garden


That's great advice about planting in minimum distance clusters. I've done it to success, and would say the ONLY drawback is that trying to hand pick all the fruit is like a jungle expedition. You can still plant in rows if you need to feel 'organized', just apply hay or grass clippings around each plant to 'protect' from weeds, draught, etc. or leave it open and constantly run a rake/hoe down each row for weeding and to keep it from packing after you walk. (rows can also offer nice troughs for watering)

The fun is in learning and choosing what works best for you. Oh, and dont' forget to stake/tie up your plants

As for contents, might be easier to work backwards from your recipe and intended Qty....depending on the tomato (i recommend roma/plumb..more 'meat', less juice/seeds)) you should plan on 6-8 good fruit per plant. (don't forget to pinch 75% of the suckers (new branches growing out of the "V" of existing branches), which will force even more fruit and less green growth. Bell peppers, probably 4 per plant. As for hots, that's up to you and the following would only require 2 plants each, but a nice mix of red hot chilli, sweet banana, jalapeno, and habanero add kick. (just remember to wear gloves and NOT wipe your eyes while cutting them...more seeds = more hots). Onions...another taste preference since you can go white, yellow, red, sweet, hot, etc.
And yes...Cilantro is a MUST!!! have fun and good luck

Last edited by dchaban; 04-16-2008 at 11:20 AM.
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Old 04-16-2008, 05:25 PM   #4
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Salsa garden


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...As for contents, might be easier to work backwards from your recipe and intended Qty....depending on the tomato (i recommend roma/plumb..more 'meat', less juice/seeds)) you should plan on 6-8 good fruit per plant. (don't forget to pinch 75% of the suckers (new branches growing out of the "V" of existing branches), which will force even more fruit and less green growth. Bell peppers, probably 4 per plant. As for hots, that's up to you and the following would only require 2 plants each, but a nice mix of red hot chilli, sweet banana, jalapeno, and habanero add kick. (just remember to wear gloves and NOT wipe your eyes while cutting them...more seeds = more hots). Onions...another taste preference since you can go white, yellow, red, sweet, hot, etc. And yes...Cilantro is a MUST!!! have fun and good luck
I'll second your suggestion for the Roma Tomatoes. They're absolutely the best for most Mexican recipes. I do disagree about planting in rows with mulch, though. While you will get a yield, it won't be as great and with mulch there is a potential for insects, molds and mildews that you wouldn't get if you planted the plants intensively in the manner Mother Nature would if she were planting them in the wild.

Companion planting will also give you added protection against certain insects, and with Tomatoes, against nematodes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_companion_plants
http://www.companionplanting.net/
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