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WEEKLY GARDEN THREAD VOLUME 25 JUNE 21, 2013
Free Republic | June 21, 2013 | greeneyes

Posted on 06/21/2013 12:40:17 PM PDT by greeneyes

The Weekly Gardening Thread is a weekly gathering of folks that love soil, seeds and plants of all kinds. From complete newbies that are looking to start that first potted plant, to gardeners with some acreage, to Master Gardener level and beyond, we would love to hear from you.

This thread is non-political, although you will find that most here are conservative folks. No matter what, you won’t be flamed and the only dumb question is the one that isn’t asked.

It is impossible to hijack the Weekly Gardening Thread ... there is no telling where it will go and that is part of the fun and interest. Jump in and join us!

NOTE: This is a once a week ping list. We do post to the thread during the week. Links to related articles and discussions which might be of interest are welcomed, so feel free to post them at any time.


TOPICS: Gardening
KEYWORDS: agriculture; food; gardening; hobby; walkingonion
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Summer is here. A great sunny day temperature at 84 degrees. Rainfall so far this year has been good-all the rain barrels are full. Life's good on our little Missouri Acre.LOL.

Still eating lettuce from the spring planting and peppers from the indoor plants taken from the garden last fall.

Spring plantings are coming along. Pests have been minimal so far. Carrots failed to germinate, but the beets next to them are coming along fine. I'll plant carrots later this fall to keep in the winter garden.

Dew berries are starting to ripen and are really big this year. Blackberries must be trying to recover from the drought or something, they are very small this year and not ripening very well. We are just letting the birds have them.

Yucca plants are starting to bloom. Passion flowers are blooming in the blueberry bed. We'll get the seeds this year and plant them in a bed of their own for next year.

Hope you are all doing well, and having some successes too. Have a great weekend. God Bless.

1 posted on 06/21/2013 12:40:17 PM PDT by greeneyes
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To: greeneyes; Diana in Wisconsin; gardengirl; girlangler; SunkenCiv; HungarianGypsy; Gabz; ...

Pinging the list.


2 posted on 06/21/2013 12:42:53 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes; All

My squash (zucchini & straight neck) are blooming like gangbusters ... and I have yet to see a baby squash! I’m getting nervous. Too many recipes ... not enough zucchini! We have gotten two out of mom’s garden & picked the first cucumber today.

It has been a beautiful two days here, but humidity is creeping its way back in & the temps will be heating up.


3 posted on 06/21/2013 12:47:05 PM PDT by MissMagnolia (You see, truth always resides wherever brave men still have ammunition. I pick truth. (John Ransom))
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To: greeneyes
Lettuce still good here in SE PA, weather has not been hot yet. Starting to get beets. Also eating swiss chard and turnip greens.

Found a big ol' volunteer tomatillo amidst the taters when I was weeding and hilling them. Moved it to its own spot.

Pulled a muscle in my back from all the hilling and hoeing. Ouch.

4 posted on 06/21/2013 12:47:35 PM PDT by dirtboy
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To: greeneyes

Hi! I’m doing nothing with the garden this year because of my recent surgery. It looks awful. I can’t even mow because I’m still traumatized by my mower accident 2 weks ago.

I was starting to mow the front pasture, which was really long because of all the rain we’ve had. I was proceeding slowly with the blades set up as high as I could set them. Suddenly, thud,, crunch. I turned around and found that I’d mowed over a newborn fawn. There was no sign that that little creature was underneath the long grass.

After talking to people around here (I’ve lived here more than 25 years) I find that this kind of accident is rather common among the farmers when they are cutting hay. But, I amstill devastated, and there is no way I can get to my garden area now because it is surrounded by chest high grass. It will stay that way until Fall.


5 posted on 06/21/2013 12:51:04 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: greeneyes

I’m an all fruit cropper this years.. The nets seem to have kept birds and squirrels from feasting while we cruised Alaska.. could be a bumper crop for Asian pears, 3 kinds, and Fuji apples look good too. Bees were around but some of these trees pretty much take care of their own pollenious stuff just fine regardless. Wish I had cherry and a berry or two too.. oh vell


6 posted on 06/21/2013 12:51:14 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi --)
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To: MissMagnolia

Never have I ever had anyone complain that they don’t have enough zucchini.LOL


7 posted on 06/21/2013 12:53:00 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: dirtboy

I had some trash in a garden cart that I was going to burn as soom as it got full. Before it got full, a volunteer tomato came up.

I am not sure what to do with it.LOL

I hear that peppermint essential oil is good for muscle aches and pains.


8 posted on 06/21/2013 12:55:03 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

I am so sorry for your trials this year. Best wishes for a speedy recovery.


9 posted on 06/21/2013 12:56:37 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes

Just had a meal at work that featured (fresh from my garden) marinated and grilled zucchini and straight neck squash. We also had cucumbers from the garden. Things are looking good. Last year I had a bad fungus invasion. It looks like I am holding it back this year.

My two adult sons visited last week. Of course they wanted quality time with Mom and Dad. (Taking back home a free motorcycle, 100+ quarts of homemade salsa, jalapeno relish, peaches, and other vegetables, 12 bottles of homemade wine (almond-raisin and jalapeno wine were their favorites), and about 40 pounds of bacon, smoked pork chops and homemade sausage probably influenced their decision to make a detour on their way home from attending a wedding in Wisconsin.)


10 posted on 06/21/2013 1:02:45 PM PDT by american_ranger
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To: NormsRevenge

This year is the first for our cherries, and they are awfully small. Some of our apple trees, and peach trees seem to be suffering, but we have not figured out what their problem is yet.

They may just be too close to the walnut tree, have a pest that we haven’t been able to see, deficient in nutrients, but we did use a fertilizer that is specifically for fruit trees. Hubby is still researching it.

We did figure out what was happening to our Goji berries and bush cherries. After hubby told me it happened again, I went out to look, came back and told hubby it was two-legged varmits-most likely some teenage boys that walk through the neighborhood sometimes.

The plant had obviously been cut with a knife.


11 posted on 06/21/2013 1:02:59 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes

I’ve got volunteer squash, cilantro, dill and basil as well as the tomatillos. I don’t even bother buying tomatillo plants or seeds any more, I can count on them coming up as volunteers each year. But the one by the taters was much bigger than the other ones in their normal spot.


12 posted on 06/21/2013 1:05:23 PM PDT by dirtboy
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To: greeneyes

Not much you can do , unless you can catch the kids,, keep watering and such,, the kids, like squirrels, will eventually move on If your lucky, I hate folks that feed them peanuts.

TRY Alfalfa pellets,, a local old timer talk show host gardener swears by ‘em, natural source for nutrients, just work ‘em in and water normally.


13 posted on 06/21/2013 1:07:23 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi --)
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To: american_ranger

Wow, impressive haul, are they pulling a giant cooler? :-)


14 posted on 06/21/2013 1:08:53 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi --)
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To: greeneyes
The New Mexico peppers are moving into bulk harvest mode. I expect I'll be processing a bunch of them by mid-next week.

Tons of green tomatoes, even after losing some limbs from the wind.

The remaining squash after the wind storm are doing well, and I'll have fresh squash tonight again for supper.

Tobacco is doing great, and I'm keeping ahead of the horned tobacco worms, mercilessly killing the little buggers every morning and evening when I find them. They are getting rare.

Everything is doing great, including the dipper gourd plant that I didn't expect to do well here.

Oh, and I have my first baby cantaloupes now, too.

/johnny

15 posted on 06/21/2013 1:11:01 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: greeneyes

My green beans are being decimated this year. I’ve begun to apply hoy sauce/soap mixture. I hope they recover. Little white thingy’s are having a feast.


16 posted on 06/21/2013 1:16:46 PM PDT by UB355 (Slower traffic keep right)
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To: american_ranger
12 bottles of homemade wine (almond-raisin and jalapeno wine were their favorites)

Would you share a recipe or two???? ;)

17 posted on 06/21/2013 1:19:06 PM PDT by Sarajevo (Don't think for a minute that this excuse for a President has America's best interest in mind.)
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To: american_ranger

I would surely visit you as well with all that bounty.LOL
Hubby just brought in the first cucumber this year, and said he had a lot of small ones coming on.

Maybe I’ll get to make some dill piclkles this year. We haven’t had a decent cucumber crop since 2010.

Hubby thinks that the last summer was so hot and dry that a lot of the bugs died, because we have been relatively free of insects etc. so far this year. Thinks the soil got baked free of pests and soil borne diseases.


18 posted on 06/21/2013 1:22:54 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: dirtboy

We often have volunteers in our compost pile too, but I never thought that a mesh cart would be subject to volunteers. LOL


19 posted on 06/21/2013 1:24:47 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: NormsRevenge

Makes sense. Alfalfa is good source for nitrogen.


20 posted on 06/21/2013 1:25:40 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: JRandomFreeper

Glad to hear you are going to have a decent crop in spite of the high wind storm damages. I hate processing in the water bath canner or pressure cooker during the summer, but that’s the way I do pickles. Tomatoes too, since the freezer went on the fritz.


21 posted on 06/21/2013 1:36:23 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes
We've had some nice rains so far this year, and the hoophouse is filled with monstrous sized plants. We've been harvesting Black Krim and Golden Girl tomatoes, green beans, Malabar spinach (a fantastic vertical grower), green peppers, and I have two young melons hanging in pantyhose from the overhear arch. Cucumbers are coming along nicely, I just wish that I would have planted some slicers instead of more picklers.

One big problem I have encounters is that my rhubarb is suddenly dying back. It was looking limp a couple days ago, so I watered it with a garden hose (previously it was only rain water).

22 posted on 06/21/2013 1:36:43 PM PDT by Sarajevo (Don't think for a minute that this excuse for a President has America's best interest in mind.)
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To: UB355

Are they white flys? I read this winter that you can actually plant your beans under a row cover and leave it there till harvest, since the flowers don’t need pollination.


23 posted on 06/21/2013 1:37:53 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes

flies. oops


24 posted on 06/21/2013 1:38:46 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: Sarajevo

I even like picklers sliced and in a salad.


25 posted on 06/21/2013 1:40:32 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: Sarajevo; american_ranger

OOPS. Ya know it had to happen-always expect to be asked for the recipe, when you mention stuff like that. LOL


26 posted on 06/21/2013 1:43:04 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes
I'll pressure can outside, but most of the NM chili are going to be roasted, seasoned, pureed and frozen in small batches that won't go bad like a pint jar would. Just a little dab will do you with those.

I overplant by 100%, so I can take losses. If I don't have losses, I'm ahead, but I rely on the food I grow and forage as a large part of my diet.

/johnny

27 posted on 06/21/2013 1:43:15 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: greeneyes

I’ll be planting fall tomato plants later this week. Most will be cherry tomatoes for sauce. I’ve been picking lots of veggies from our garden.

Our neighbor asked to watch his garden while they were out of town. He has about 20 tomato plants that are loaded. I picked the ripe ones and put them in the “usual” spot when they are away.


28 posted on 06/21/2013 1:45:14 PM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (The Second Amendment is NOT about the right to hunt. It IS a right to shoot tyrants.)
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To: JRandomFreeper

I was thinking about processing outside this summer too. What sort of set up do you have for pressure cooking or water bath canning?


29 posted on 06/21/2013 1:45:18 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: Arrowhead1952

Is the usual spot somewhere in your house?LOL


30 posted on 06/21/2013 1:50:50 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes
Outside on the grill with deadfall wood that I won't use for BBQing. Move the pressure cooker either more or less directly over the fire to control the temperature. Hey, it works and it's free.

/johnny

31 posted on 06/21/2013 1:57:21 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: greeneyes

No, in a cooler on his back porch. I did that a couple of years ago and he now knows to check the cooler when they get home.


32 posted on 06/21/2013 2:07:21 PM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (The Second Amendment is NOT about the right to hunt. It IS a right to shoot tyrants.)
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To: greeneyes
Condition of the battlefield and war plans:

Both squash plants died, murdered by moths/borers. War plan completed to prevent that again. Have Hydrofarm tomato barrel with attached trellis coming and have Zucchini seed coming. This is for fall garden to transplant plants in early September. Ordered more netting - will wrap net over Zucchini to hopefully keep out moths. The barrel will be on the deck, not on the ground in garden. If this doesn't work, I'll only plant Butternut Squash from now on (in containers, not in ground) since it has hard limbs, not hollow for those freaking borers to be in and murder the plant.

Sweet potatoes in 10 gallon fabric container with potting soil mix look better than anything out there. They look just fine even though the Texas sun is beating down out there. I'm up to 94/95/96 temp. here.

This was a real learning week and I'm not through with this project. It all started with Sunflowers and oil and seed, but it went to potatoes yesterday and today went to Egypt Walking Onions. I'll just write about the final decisions and not how I got there.

Operation Sunflower Oil - Seeds

I'll get Sunflowers that grow two feet tall (I'll look up the name if someone wants it) with black seeds as black seeds have more oil than others but even black seeds have moderate, higher, and highest amount of oil depending on the strain. The seeds of the two feet tall ones have higher oil. Black seeds are also smaller than striped seeds. The seeds you buy to eat are the striped ones. I have a thought up way to crush the seeds, heat the seeds to release the oil but I don't yet have a press to press the oil out of the mass. Not going to spend $100+ for a press. I'll find a way.

Operation Sunflower - Potatoes

I'll get Jerusalem Artichokes (also known as Sunchokes) - darn, I did not know those came from Sunflower plants. Those Sunflowers are called vegetable plants, not flower plants or they are listed both places. That's because you eat the roots. I'm trying to find the “Fuseau” strain as they don't have bumps but look more like a potato and one root can weigh up to four pounds. The plant can grow to ten feet. Each plant can have ten tubers under the soil. They can be eaten raw and taste like Water Chestnuts except they are sweet. They have a substance that controls the amount of sugar released into the body so that's good for diabetes. If they are stored for awhile, they act like a regular potato in the body so that would mean more sugar released at one time just like regular potatoes dump sugar in.

They are perennial so if you plant a few extra the first time (don't dig out the tubers from a few), the left in flower part of the extras will die but those extras will add more tubers until the next time they grow, and you've got more plants to come up forever. Just one 4 pound tuber will feed a number of people. I saw a picture of a four pound one split down the middle like a big regular white potato, with a stick of butter in the middle melting. You use the tuber the same way you use a potato - just substitute the tuber for the regular potato.

I haven't found the “Fuseau” strain roots in this country yet. If I was in England I would have no trouble finding them. They are all over the internet. I only started looking this afternoon for the Fuseau strain so I'm not giving up finding them here. This strain has a smooth skin and looks like a regular potato. The other strains of the Jerusalem ones, are much smaller and knotty and sort of glued together. They would have to be cut apart and peeled, then they would look like regular new potatoes. I'll go to that if I have to, but I'll keep looking for them here.

Oh, yes, these tuber, either the long or knotty ones, will take over the garden if you don't keep them thinned. Some people put metal down in the ground to prevent the tubers from leaving that area. Some plant them in another plot away from the regular garden so they won't infiltrate the regular garden.

Those Jerusalem Sunflower tubers are everlasting food. You just dig up what you want and leave the rest and they are fine - go back for more when you want them. You will always have food, either raw or cooked.

I found a place in Texas that has the knotty kind and saw they had Egypt Walking Onions. What the hell was that? Well, it's onions that travel and you will always have onions. You might plant the first one somewhere other than the garden because it's always traveling and multiplying. If you are interested in everlasting onions, let me know and I'll post the link. A number of pictures of the onion are there to show how it travels and what the onions look like in all phases.

These war plans will come together as the months count down and it's time to plant for a fall garden and prepare for the spring one. This present period of time has been military procurement for this garden war - getting the proper tools so the operation will succeed.

Onward into the fray -

33 posted on 06/21/2013 2:20:58 PM PDT by Marcella (Prepping can save your life today. I am a Christian, not a Muslim.)
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To: JRandomFreeper

so
you are using a regular bbq grill?


34 posted on 06/21/2013 2:53:55 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: Marcella
Still flogging it to death, I see. You are force of nature...

/johnny

35 posted on 06/21/2013 2:54:18 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: Arrowhead1952

OK. Thought he might be paying you to look out for the garden with produce.LOL


36 posted on 06/21/2013 2:55:06 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes; MissMagnolia

We had two zucchini plants last year and it supplied us with enough. This year, Mr. Sg used the “Three sisters” method and I’m afraid we might be overwhelmed. Fortunately, the seedlings-turned-transplants he gave away were mostly zucchini, so we have a bunch of butternut squash plants that can be preserved.


37 posted on 06/21/2013 2:55:07 PM PDT by Silentgypsy
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To: greeneyes
Pretty much. It started life as a gas grill, but I umm.... modified it after I picked it up out of the scrap heap. It burns wood or charcoal now.

/johnny

38 posted on 06/21/2013 2:56:28 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: american_ranger

Hey, wow! People will line up at your door begging you to adopt them.


39 posted on 06/21/2013 2:58:38 PM PDT by Silentgypsy
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To: JRandomFreeper

“Still flogging it to death, I see. You are force of nature...”

Actually it was you who started this. I checked on Sunflowers because you had them so I needed to know about Sunflowers. I’m glad I studied them.


40 posted on 06/21/2013 3:00:50 PM PDT by Marcella (Prepping can save your life today. I am a Christian, not a Muslim.)
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To: greeneyes

Mr. Sg once developed a motion-sensor sprinkler device. It would be even more fun if you rigged it w/green food coloring or indelible ink to dye the varmints!


41 posted on 06/21/2013 3:01:01 PM PDT by Silentgypsy
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To: Marcella

I have some of those onions, but I would like to see the website, as I just happened upon the seeds one year and never got around to learning more about them. They are part of Hubby’s garden plot.


42 posted on 06/21/2013 3:03:13 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: Silentgypsy

We actually have frozen zukes before for use in soups and zuke bread.


43 posted on 06/21/2013 3:06:05 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes

Did you have a lot of cold snaps last winter/early spring? It seems like when we do, we have fewer early insect problems, but since correlation isn’t causation....


44 posted on 06/21/2013 3:06:36 PM PDT by Silentgypsy
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To: Silentgypsy

LOL. I like that idea. Kinda like the dye packs used by banks.


45 posted on 06/21/2013 3:07:11 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: Silentgypsy

Yes, I think we did have unusually cold weather this spring for a longer period of time than usual.


46 posted on 06/21/2013 3:09:15 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: greeneyes

The back field (production gardens) remains a mess. For the first time in my memory, it looks like my tomatoes will be a disaster. The soil is oatmeal or playdough depending on elevation. Each time it dries enough to till properly, we get drenched.

Oh well.

I tilled one section this week and planted corn in the doughballs. Last night I planted bean among the corn just to get the job done. If they produce - good. If not, at least I tried. I primed both by pre-soaking the seed with a smidgen of kelp extract to get them going. Last night we had a good thunderstorm so more nitrogen and plenty of moisture to keep them going for a few more days.

We take what we get from the Lord. Prepared the fields (as best we can) and rely on God for the harvest (maybe somebody else grows it and sells it in the grocery store).

Still, all is well. We’re butchering chickens tomorrow, too.


47 posted on 06/21/2013 3:19:05 PM PDT by WorkingClassFilth (Hey NSA, here I am. Bring a large Hawaiian pizza when you come for me.)
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To: greeneyes
I still have to find the right blackberries for this area. I found a listing just for Texas late last night and think that is the list to use. By planting two kinds that follow each other ripening in Texas, could have ripe ones most of the summer months. Can order the 2 yr. plants that produce that year. That isn't expensive since I'm not planting an acre in berries.

I couldn't find the right type fertilizer for containers around here, so ordered some Jobes for containers plus a not big bag of fertilizer just for tomatoes when they start to grow tomatoes in that container.

48 posted on 06/21/2013 3:19:37 PM PDT by Marcella (Prepping can save your life today. I am a Christian, not a Muslim.)
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To: Marcella

If I find a source for the Fuseau strain, I’ll let you know. Walking onions? I could never have too many onions! If I were a vegetable, I would be a big, beautiful onion! (My personality is much more turnip, but who doesn’t want to aspire to greater things? Excelsior!)


49 posted on 06/21/2013 3:22:17 PM PDT by Silentgypsy
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To: greeneyes

This is a blog spot that talks about them and has the pictures.

http://egyptianwalkingonions.blogspot.com/


50 posted on 06/21/2013 3:30:55 PM PDT by Marcella (Prepping can save your life today. I am a Christian, not a Muslim.)
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