Grateful Dead

In and Out of the Garden He Goes...

So after getting a fairly gratifying amount of long-overdue yard work done over the holiday weekend, I am getting a big kick out of the fact that decades' worth of chance-acquired plants are starting to look like they belong together. And then in another topic JurassicBlueberries was holding forth on the care and feeding of blueberry plants, and what with one thing and another, I bet we've got gardeners here. Let's talk!

(PS: Folks, this should probably go without saying, but if your gardening efforts involve the cultivation of plants illegal in your jurisdiction, please do not post about them here. For all practical purposes, everyone in the world can read what you post here, and that definitely includes your local law enforcement. Or your not-so-local law enforcement. Or your mama. Silence is golden.)

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Mr. Pid's picture
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Monmouth County, NJ
United States
Joined: Dec 22 2007
My apple tree went sproing!

It's a vision of pinkish-white loveliness I can enjoy for a few days. It's just too bad that the abundant quantity of very small fruit it produces it utterly useless to me. But at least the birds, bugs and bees get to have a field day. Go, Nature!

Conversation is always more interesting than recitation, so speak your mind and not someone else's.

marye's picture
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Oakland, CA
United States
Joined: May 26 2007
yes....

this is a good place to be. Just spent three days at a conference in Monterey last week, which was lovely.

In other news, we're supposed to get some rain tonight in Oakland, which will be good for the incipient garden. Though I must remember to bring the weed whacker back in.

And in still other news, regarding the bumper crop of baby maidenhair ferns about which I posted many months ago, several have survived and are now half an inch tall. Meanwhile, a whole new crop is turning up in other plants' pots, most recently the newly transplanted ficus cuttings. That'll be interesting...

Oh, and the apricot colored foxglove I planted last year is about to bloom. Woohoo!

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Miami 33157
United States
25° 36' 50.7024" N, 80° 19' 56.8236" W
Joined: Jun 9 2007
Funny thing about crocs

The native crocs were endangered but now have nests as far north as Broward County. They are shy and try to stay away from people. Alligators are aggresive and every year kill a few people in Florida. I love Captiva and Sannibel heavily damaged by Wilma alot of structures were destroyed.
Many of the islands south of there have been overrun by water monitors and pythons released by idiots into the wild.
Marye the time I spent in Muir (?) woods was one of my lifes highlights.You are lucky to be so close to Monterrey. Muir and Yosemite and the wine country.

And the road goes on forever....
BobbaLee

marye's picture
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Oakland, CA
United States
Joined: May 26 2007
sounds great...

I've never been to Miami, but I'll never forget my trip to Sanibel and Captiva. More about wildlife than plants, I suppose, but so beautiful. And so unlike the California clay. With gorgeous shells strewn on the beach like litter! I don't know that I'll ever have occasion to go back, but it sure was gorgeous. How often does one see alligators AND crocodiles in the wild on the same day?

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Miami 33157
United States
25° 36' 50.7024" N, 80° 19' 56.8236" W
Joined: Jun 9 2007
Spring time in miami

Yes this is the spring. It means cool to warm tempatures low humidity and everything is putting out new leaves. In about a month the tempature will rise to the upper 80's and humidity of about 80-90% all day long.

I know I know everyone thinks Miami is Palm Trees and sand. Well the palm trees you are thinking of are coconuts and not native to Miami. Miami Beach is man made (mostly). They dregged the bay and made islands. Covered them with sand and hotels.

Most of Miami a 150 years ago was called Pine Rockland. Which is tall pine trees with palmetto bushes, hard rock and a few other plants like coontie etc.the pine is called Dade County pine and is one of the hardest woods in the world. The Everglades kind of started where our airport is today.In fact at one time there were rapids along the Miami River that were demolished in the 1880s to make way for farm land.
Miami is not a jungle. It is in fact a pretty dry place most of the year because we cannot store water-it drains through the limestone into the ocean.Yes it may rain alot but it goes swiftly out to sea.
Miami also had very beautiful hammocks and mangrove areas. It is home to the largest variety of rare plants in the world. In my yard is the southernmost Sugar Hackberry in the United States plus other rare plants.
I belong to the Native Plant Society which is dedicated to restoring yards and habitats to the original ecosytem.I have a small amount of grass however most of my yard is covered with ground covers,bushes and trees that feed birds, bugs and butterflies.Today I counted over 40 butterflies in my yard plus numerous snakes,lizards and birds. I don't fertilize or spray anyhting in my yard.

If you want to see what Miami used to look like visit Bill Baggs state Park, the Everglades national park and Shark Valley.

And the road goes on forever....
BobbaLee

Ami
Ami's picture
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PA
United States
Joined: Jan 13 2008
it's all coming up...

pea pods. I usually don't wait for the May 15th frost-free date in PA, so I end up covering some areas in clear tarp overnight, but it seems that everything is doing well to date! i have 5 big perennial flower gardens that the squirrels seem to have finally left alone this winter. A friend suggested planting a few daffodil bulbs with each cluster of other plants since they are poisonous to the little critters. I have small tufts of daffodils everywhere which is pretty and then to boot- all the other stuff is coming up for a change. The veggie garden is all planted and ready, so we'll see what comes up well. last year everything did well, this year I put in a few things from plant rather than all seed. I got peppers and 2 kinds of eggplant plants because peppers never grow for me from seed, despite adding sulfer... i also put in some romaine from plant, last year it took so long for the plants to get to size. The topsy turvy idea looks good, I think end of summer last year a varmint or two got to the squash and tomatoes. so here's to what hopes to be a good garden year. Ami

Hozomeen's picture
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NC
United States
Joined: Jun 22 2007
topsy turvey tomatoes

Last year I got my vegetable garden tilled and ready, got all my tomato cages and stuff gathered up, and I even got all my seeds started, but then something happened and I couldn't get everything put out. My vegetable garden was about a thirty minute hike from the house. I needed to do something a little smaller in scale that would be closer and easier.

I had seen advertisements for these topsy turvey tomato planters in catalogs and online. Being the busy body I am, I couldn't just go out and buy one, so I got to thinking and came up with something that worked out pretty well.

First I got a couple of 4x4 posts and bolted them to the front of my potting table. I had a couple of pieces of aluminum angle iron...I guess that would be angle aluminum...funny, I always call it angle iron no matter what it's made of, usually its made out of steel...so I took these pieces of angled material and ran them side by side across the tops of the 4x4 posts to make a flat ledge with a gap in the middle. This was step one.

Next I took some big terra cotta planters. I had my seed starts ready and pick out some of the healthiest ones. For tomatoes I did a cherokee purple, jersey devil, and a stump of the world. I also did a squash plant, a white half runner bean, and some peas. Each start was in a peat pellet. Turning each planter sideways I inserted the tiny plants through the drain hole in the bottom of each planter. Next I balanced the planter on the potting table while I added compost on top of the plant, leaving only the tiny little seed start sticking out the bottom. Finally, I placed each planter along the ledge with the starts dangling through the gap in-between the aluminum angle pieces...this part I wouldn't recommend, I tried to pair each plant with something that would compliment it, like basil or spearmint or something to just hold the soil down on top. I found that they were competing for water and nutrients. This would work well if you could set up a drip feed system and give them a steady diet of compost tea I suppose, but for me, watering by hand, it was cumbersome. I wished later that I had just used some moss to hold the soild down.

It turned out great. The plants tried to grow up, but when they got heavy, especially with fruit, they hung down nicely...and best of all they didn't touch the ground. I think the squash did the best. The peas didn't do so well, but I will say that if you wanted to do a whole slue of peas or beans like this that it might do good with some planning and preparation, neither of which I ever seem to do despite my best efforts ahead of time. The tomatoes did really well also. The half runner beans weren't as happy. They still wanted to wrap and cling, and when I would train them down the post they would stop growing that vine and start another one up toward the main plant. The same thing happened with the peas. The tomatoes and squash needed no training, twine, wire, or cage, they just hung in there.

If anyone is interested in doing this and has questions let me know. I am going away this weekend, but when I get back I will check to see if I have any photos to show you. I think I have a video of something else that has it in the background. I also did some cool things with lavender and sewer tiles that turned out better than I expected...but that is another story...

Put your good where it will do the most.
-The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test

Sunshine-daydream1951's picture
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9 Barrio Bajo Casa Sunshine Daydream
Jorairatar, GD 18492
Spain
Joined: Jun 5 2007
Spring

It is very confused here

none of my bulbs are through yet, but the wild spring stuff is starting to flower, Orchids, buttercups, Poppies, catkins on trees. etc

Bob

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http://spanishsunshinedaydream.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/photos.php?id=633338979

Spanish Jam

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508 winterhaven sacto ca worcester mass
sacramento ca.
United States
38° 37' 37.0956" N, 121° 28' 26.0796" W
Joined: Oct 5 2007
playin in the dirt

been doing some yard work its been nice since i got back from mass.seems like spring,from snow to spring.hummm,quantiumleep...just cleanning out old weeds some flowers are popping threw.daffodils,first sign of spring.

c_c
c_c's picture
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Joined: Jun 4 2007
Dragon Seeds

http://www.chili-seeds.com/products.asp?cat=10&pg=3

I am not sure about the soil in Spain, but the Thai Dragon seeds might work.

then again, you should start them off in pots anyways.

here is some advice:

http://www.chili-seeds.com/growing_chilli_plants.asp

by the way, I have never used that site for ordering/buying seeds; I just found it when I searched for Thai chilli.

if you are not in a big hurry, I can probably mail you some seeds that I can buy in Thailand in a month or so.

peace.

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In and Out of the Garden He Goes...