Skip to comments.WEEKLY GARDEN THREAD VOLUME 49 DECEMBER 6, 2013
Posted on 12/06/2013 12:14:15 PM PST 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 wont be flamed and the only dumb question is the one that isnt 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!
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Can you believe that it's already December? 2013 will shortly be another one for the history books. For me personally, the Holiday season has been a little bittersweet. In 2008, I spent the time between Nov.1 and Dec. 7, living in the hospital as my Dad struggled to live he gave up and went to meet his maker on Pearl Harbor day-darn good timing for an old WWII vet. He is very missed especially during the holidays. He used to make our pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving. His mind was sharp to the end.
This year we are Thankful that all our beautiful great grand children, and grand daugter escaped the fire in their home unscathed a few days before Thanksgiving. The fire dept. got lost on the way, so didn't show up until about 45 min after they were called. The trailer they were living in while building the home didn't catch fire until 30 min. after the call, so it's an unfortunate casualty of the late arrival.
I am looking forward to getting some more spring cleaning done this week. We received 5 inches of snow, and still falling. It's 22 degrees now and will head down to 7 degrees tonight. We are all cozy here in the basement except for the feet. That cold concrete isn't helped much by the carpet we put down. Even the socks don't help much. Best thing is to put a heated bean bag on a foot stool with feet on top, and then throw a blanket over your feet and legs. Drink some tea, and get real cozy. LOL
Rightly sent me a link to an interesting website video. Going to try to post it below, for your enjoyment and information:
Have a great weekend, God Bless.
Pinging the List.
No snow yet here in Massachusetts. Our azaleas in the back yard still have leaves. Odd.
Globull Warming Strikes again!
I am sorry you are having such cold temps!
Thank You for mentioning Pearl Harbor Day. Here is a little essay I wrote about the “Sleeping Giant”.
Remember Pearl Harbor.
On the Hawaiian island of Kauai, the is a mountain called The Sleeping Giant. Although it has nothing to do with Admiral Yamamoto, its story DOES have a relevance for today.
The giants job was to protect the ancient Little People (Menehune) of Kauai. One day, they were attacked, but the giant was asleep. The Little People did EVERYTHING they could to wake him up, but the giant had drunk too much the night before and would not wake up. They tried pelting him with rocks, shouting, playing drums, whatever, but the giant never awakened, and the Menehune were conquered. The only trace left of them is their superb engineering feats (dikes, fishfarm ponds, water systems) that dot the island to this day. The Great Spirit was so angry at the stupid lazy drunken giant who had been derelict in his duty and caused the extinction of a wonderful civilization, that he turned the giant into a stone mountain. When the tide rushes into Kauais lava caves, you can still hear him snore.
I doubt if Admiral Yamamoto knew this legend, yet he speaks of the Sleeping Giant. He spoke of awakening him, and Pearl Harbor sure did.
Right now, I feel like the Menehune, screaming, yelling, and throwing rocks to wake up the Sleeping Giant that is America. Please God, let the Giant awaken, lest our Civilization face the same fate as the Little People of Kauai.
I know this has nothing to do with gardening, (Except that Kauai is known as “The Garden Isle!)but I was moved to share it from your Dad’s Story.
Our Oak Trees still have leaves, course they are kinda brown, and there’s plenty of leaves on the ground. I love to look out at the cedar trees when they are covered with snow.
Hubby always wants to cut them down, but they are so tall. They were nice size when we bought the lots 40 years ago, and so have been a part of the landscape for so long that I would miss seeing them.
The feral tobacco plant inside is happy as a clam and doing great.
There will be no outside work for a while, as we're scheduled for freezing temps through Tuesday.
One big pot will last for a week and we usually freeze a half gallon. Peppers grown and put up from our garden played a prominent role...
Thanks for posting that story. Pearl Harbor Day is never far from my mind, especially during the holidays. I identify with your desire for the sleeping Giant to wake up.
The garden thread is a group of friends near and far helping each other.
Just as conversation between friends often strays from topic to topic, so too with the garden thread. It’s all good-generally a respite from the political discourse to just relax and share stories and knowledge not just of plants, gardens, and such.
Yep. I have zero plans to go out doors for a while. Perfect weather for early spring cleaning and organization.
Where does one go to find feral or wild tobacco? Sweet bays are laden with ice right now. So are the gardenias.
My Key Lime (indoors right now) bloomed like a snow shower last month and is so full of young limes I think I’ll have to snip off half of them, as to not overtax the plant?
I made some chili last week. This week, I am thinking navy beans and ham. I have a bunch of leftover ham and a ham bone. I’ll make a big pot, and some cornbread.
About half of the pot of beans will be turned into bean soup with home grown veggies added. Soups, Chili, and Beans are the delights of winter cuisine at our house during the winter. Life is good!
The oak trees around use my in ground pool as their drop zone. They stop falling only by the time the new ones pop out in April.
I normally start my tobacco seeds in Feb.
If this one keeps growing (and I keep repotting it), it may be ready to harvest about the time I get ready to plant my regular tobacco crop. ;)
We usually get high enough winds often enough that the trees are barren by spring. They do like to drop into our rain barrels if we should forget to batten down the lids.LOL
I don't make my own mole sauce, but I was shown how by an ancient old woman in New Mexico. Lotsa work.
We got freezing rain yesterday afternoon, then snow last night. We are forecast for freezing temps until some time Monday. Low tonight expected to be 13 degrees. Berrrr!
Did our best to winterize things, but this is pretty cold for TX.
Ordered some golden currant seeds this week and have a list of seed from another source that I am planning to plant this spring.
I am surrounded by old mature oaks of all kinds. Most are in the 70 to 85 year old range. We had to cut one down on a property we own next door and our summer cooling bill doubled. The arborist told me a mature oak draws 250 gallons of water per day thru it's roots and cools the area with shade and evaporation. That's 1,600 pounds of water per day.
The tarp has been accumulating rain in spots and sagging because the wire around the garden which supports it also sagged ... so now, I have 2x4s at the top between the posts which stiffened it all up & some supports across - worked ok last night when we had some showers. Hopefully, nothing will crash down on my little plants, which also have a row cover over them.
We had a horrible ice storm in 1998 and they're calling for similar or worse. We do have a generator and once the storm blows through, it shouldn't be but so cold so we'll get through it somehow.
December 23, 1998, "The Christmas Ice Storm": A major ice storm struck central and southeast Virginia beginning on Wednesday, December 23 and lasting into Friday, December 25, Christmas Day. Icy conditions caused injuries from slips and falls and numerous vehicle accidents. Ice accumulations of up to an inch brought down trees and power lines. Outages were so widespread (400,000 customers on Christmas Eve) that some people were without power for up to ten days.
Thanks, I’ll try that next big batch of Chili I make. Usually make at least 10 lbs of burger meat to make the chili base. Then cool it and cut out bricks to wrap and freeze.
That’s my Chili Helpler take out a brick and cook up some beans, then add various and sundry spices to make several different chili dishes and styles of chili.
It was 40 at 1 am this morning, so I don’t think it froze. It’s 3 pm and temp is 41.7. A TV channel says it will be 30 tonight.
After looking at a planting chart for here, I’ll start certain seeds under the grow lamp inside in about two weeks.
Nothing has frozen so far outside, the plants are fine. I have covered some due to rain was supposed to fall as the temps went down and I think it must have rained some last night as it looks wet on the deck but have no rain now.
At some point, when they are here, will get a dwarf lemon tree and various herb plants from Lowes. I still have not found cheap nursery pots with a wide width. I thought nursery pots were supposed to be cheap. I did find one place where they were cheap but the customers said the pots were so thin, they split during the first time they were used, so don’t want those.
I’ll look again today - isn’t the internet great so I can look at stores without getting in my car and going to these places? Wonderful.
Indeed it is cold for anywhere south of the Mason Dixon Line. Pretty cold for us too, but we just wait a bit, cause in Missouri, we know the weather will soon change.LOL
Wow. That’s an interesting statistic. I never knew they had that much cooling ability. We cut several to make way for new garden plots, but they were all further away from the house.
So we still get good afternoon sun for all of the house except the basement patio, which is the center of all our gardening activities. It’s lined with raised beds, and has plants in pots, as well as stacks of soil amendments, bales of straw, shovels etc.
My entire back area is covered in oak leaves. There is no point raking them up off the deck now until they quit falling. They are also wet right now.
We have such ice storms in Dec. now and again too. The one I remember most was the one that struck about 25 years ago. My daughter was getting married the day after Christmas.
She chose that date, because the family from surrounding states always came home for Christmas, hence it would be convenient for them to simply stay over.
The storm hit before Christmas. Power went down all over the area, including the Church. No one could take a shower or wash their hair, since well pumps don’t work without electricity.
Magically, the electrictiy came on in the Church about half an hour before the ceremony, and went off again just after they cut the cake! It was a memorable day and doubly so because of the storm.LOL
It sounds like you have the plants sufficiently protected that all should be well.
You have a gorgeous garden.
Try someplace like ‘greenhousemegastore.com’. I’ve had luck with them before. Haven’t ordered any really large pots though. YMMV, lots of equivalent websites out there.
I agree. I used to like window shopping, but in cold weather it’s nice to be able to shop the internet. I still like looking at old fashioned catalogs though too. I so miss the Montgomery Award catalog store we had here. That catalog was well used especially in December.
I am going to have to take all my plants to the bath tub, and give them a shower, then spray some homemade pest spray. They have an infestation, which I believe to be aphids. I only have 1 pepper left to harvest. Several pepper plants are getting ready to bloom, so I want to get rid of the infestation before any of them set fruit.
The lemon tree was outgrowing it’s growing space horizontally, so I trimmed it back so that the new growth would be more vertical.
I adore using the digital library and going shopping without ever getting into the car. Yay, ‘net!
That one freezing night we had a week ago caused the trees to finally change colors and leaves to fall. It is cold wet nasty outside and I would not go out if I wasn’t house breaking a puppy. She just doesn’t understand “Hurry up”
Greeneyes, can easily understand the wistfulness of memories of your dad. I thank God we were both (as many here were) blessed with such wonderful patriots as our dads. Also sharing your joy at the survival of your family from the fire.
The T-squash seeds and the off the grid cooking book both arrived!
I find I’m infected with the gardener’s disease of looking at catalogs and dreaming of the next one! That book is really cool!
Pulled the last seed pods off the okra “trees!”
We had a dusting of snow, bitter temperatures, but so far the roads are navigable. We expect to be slammed in next few days, however.
Glad we’re buttoned up as much as possible!
I am going to have to try them sometime. Haven’t really liked any of the Kale dishes that I have tried, but any thing with coconut oil and salt has got to be good.LOL
Pretty. What kind of kale is that?
Ratifying your prayer for the awakening of the Sleeping Giant again. Loved that story and that analogy.
That chili sounds good! Johnny, I’m allergic to chocolate, so do you know if adding carob powder would work well in chili?
LOL. That reminds me of far ago days. I am always looking for ways to avoid the cold, and lazy daisy ways of doing things.
I used to have a really long stake out chain in addition to the fenced in play yard. So I would fasten the chain on the out side door handle, and keep it piled under the door sill.
When doggie needed to go, I would clip the hook to the collar, and give the signal to go forth, shut the door and watch out the window to make sure the doggie did their business. I sat on a stool and sipped hot tea. LOL
Doggie could take as much time as needed, and didn’t get to come in till finished. Worked for me.
My garlic grew 8” this past week with the 65+ temps. It’s about 10” right now. My saffron crocuses are up! I ordered some more for Christmas for my mom and MIL. Hubby’s going to get some bigger window box type pots for them.
Red Winter, Red Bor and Dwarf Blue Curl.
Something that I have used that works well is adding strong coffee. It's the bitter of the chocolate that works so well in savory cooking like that. Coffee works, just not quite the same.
I was going to whine about the bitter cold here in Wisconsin (no snow on the ground now; it all melted away last week), but I can see that you have much more on your plate. Was your granddaughter’s house under construction? How did the fire start? Thank God that the family is all right.
I did get out the long underwear today for the first time in 3 years, and I’m glad. When your morning news warns not to allow any skin to be exposed when going outdoors, you know that it’s going to be a cold one!
I just remembered that I should have put up Christmas decorations outdoors a couple of weeks ago when it was warmer. I forget about that every year. It looks like they’ll stay in the basement now until next year and everybody will think that an old scrooge and his wife live in this house. It is so cold (about 9) that you really cannot stand to be outdoors for even a minute to hang a garland. I do have a Thanksgiving/Christmas wreath on the door that I put up before a dinner party that I hosted November 16. It will just have to do for the season.
Thanks for the tip! I’ll try that!
Lovely and appropriate story. Thanks for sharing.
LOL! I understand the situation about the lights! This year I found a couple of $10.oo lights in the shape of an angel and a snowflake. I’m gonna hang those with my lighted Christmas wreath and call it good!
GMTA!! Love both of those! We went to a restaurant a few days ago and chili and cornbread. Yum!
Are you going to invite us all for pie when they are ripe?
Thanks for you kind response to my sentimental statements.
I have been through that Off the Grid book twice now, and just really enjoyed it too.
Button up and stay warm and safe.
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