I've had a lot of help from www.mysquarefootgarden.net/ - there are lots of good articles for beginners. You can sign up there also for a free newsletter that will remind you when it's time to plant which vegetables.
As for the vermiculite, I use it, but know that some people won't because of conditions in the mines from which it's produced (before being heat-treated or popped which increases the water-absorbancy). Big vermiculite mines included Libby, Montana (closed 1990) and another in southwestern Virginia, both of which had some asbestos found. The EPA requires asbestos testing of vermiculite, against having the asbestos contaminant, but didn't many years ago. Vermiculite itself doesn't have asbestos. I'm not aware of any studies that veggies grown in soil with some vermiculite are bad.
Fitness Minutes: (50,532) Posts: 4,487 4/9/11 5:07 P
Welcome! I haven't had much luck with container gardening in hot and dry Colorado, but maybe I can learn something too. I thought that vermiculite was really bad for veggies as in not good chemicals. Am I wrong?
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Welcome. You'll find tips here. I have a shaded back yard, so I've had to adapt. I've found that with container gardening (and square foot gardening), the key is the soil mix. The more compost the better--almost. Actually the mix needs perlite or vermiculite IMHO to lighten it up. And I'm of the Mike McGrath school and the less chemicals the better. Again,
I have many perrenial gardens around my house and have good luck with them but, I have tried vegetable gardening and failed miserably. I'm looking forward to trying container gardening this summer and will be checking in here to read all of the good ideas floating around.
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