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BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011

Stilly River Sage 10 Feb 11 - 01:53 PM
pdq 10 Feb 11 - 03:13 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Feb 11 - 06:27 PM
Janie 10 Feb 11 - 07:12 PM
Janie 12 Feb 11 - 08:04 PM
Bobert 12 Feb 11 - 08:20 PM
Dorothy Parshall 12 Feb 11 - 08:39 PM
maeve 12 Feb 11 - 11:14 PM
Janie 13 Feb 11 - 08:26 AM
Bobert 13 Feb 11 - 09:30 AM
Janie 13 Feb 11 - 04:14 PM
Janie 13 Feb 11 - 04:52 PM
Janie 13 Feb 11 - 05:40 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Feb 11 - 08:37 PM
Bobert 13 Feb 11 - 09:07 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Feb 11 - 09:56 PM
Bobert 13 Feb 11 - 10:18 PM
Dorothy Parshall 14 Feb 11 - 02:01 PM
maeve 14 Feb 11 - 03:43 PM
maeve 15 Feb 11 - 02:40 PM
Janie 20 Feb 11 - 03:18 PM
GUEST,Jon 20 Feb 11 - 03:28 PM
maire-aine 20 Feb 11 - 04:06 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Feb 11 - 06:35 PM
Janie 20 Feb 11 - 07:28 PM
maire-aine 20 Feb 11 - 07:31 PM
GUEST,Jon 20 Feb 11 - 09:15 PM
Bobert 20 Feb 11 - 09:29 PM
Janie 20 Feb 11 - 10:56 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 Feb 11 - 12:13 AM
Cuilionn 21 Feb 11 - 11:32 AM
GUEST,TJO 21 Feb 11 - 06:22 PM
Stilly River Sage 22 Feb 11 - 02:07 PM
Janie 22 Feb 11 - 09:02 PM
Max Johnson 23 Feb 11 - 01:23 PM
Donuel 23 Feb 11 - 08:46 PM
Janie 24 Feb 11 - 05:32 AM
Janie 24 Feb 11 - 05:33 AM
MMario 24 Feb 11 - 05:48 AM
Dorothy Parshall 24 Feb 11 - 09:59 PM
Janie 24 Feb 11 - 10:23 PM
freda underhill 25 Feb 11 - 04:30 AM
freda underhill 25 Feb 11 - 04:39 AM
GUEST,Jon 25 Feb 11 - 07:48 AM
Bobert 25 Feb 11 - 08:42 AM
Dorothy Parshall 03 Mar 11 - 03:14 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Mar 11 - 06:34 PM
Janie 03 Mar 11 - 09:23 PM
Dorothy Parshall 04 Mar 11 - 10:55 AM
GUEST,Jon 04 Mar 11 - 11:13 AM
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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Feb 11 - 01:53 PM

I use soaker hoses around the house foundation, and anything right near the hose gets more water; in the summer, anything not right next to the hose dies without extra watering. I like a xeriscape plan in the yard, but since I have to water the foundation, I'd like that zone to be a little wider.

I have thought about what I could put down that would spread the water a little wider, without spraying it into the air like a regular sprinkler. One idea was to take one of those flat tape-like sprinklers and mount it a few inches above the ground with some kind of garden stakes, and let it spray downward. It would hit a broader swath than the soakers. I've contoured the soil and much some years to try to make a difference. I suppose if I had a small fortune I'd put in an irrigation system and have it all on timers.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: pdq
Date: 10 Feb 11 - 03:13 PM

There is some confusion about the merits of the Bay Tree of Europe v. Umbellularia californica, variously called Bay Laurel, California Bay Tree, even Myrtle or Myrtlewood.

Actually, the California Bay is stronger flavored when used in cooking and contains more oils. It was used by many Indian groups for medicine and does repel many species of insects.

Breedlove Guitars has been known to use it for a "tone wood". It is usually moderate sized tree when found on dry hillsides, but can get to 40-50 feet if growing in rich soil with sufficient water.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Feb 11 - 06:27 PM

The one that grows locally is Laurus nobilis. More info from my gardening guru.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 10 Feb 11 - 07:12 PM

re: the pvc gutter gardens.

Not all pvc is food-safe. From the little bit of research I've done, the pvc used in gutters often contains additives of phthalates and/or bisphenol A, both of which leach and are, as best I recall, banned from use in plastics used in children's toys or food/drink containers. There is controversy about how harmful either of these additives may be to adults, but for myself, I'd err on the side of safety when contemplating growing food in pvc gutters.

There may be some pvc gutters on the market with no, or with lower amounts of both additives than is typical to satisfy those of us who tend to be more concerned than the average bear about such things. It would probably take some research to suss them out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 08:04 PM

Bought another hellebore today and will plant it tomorrow. HGC Winter's Bliss, (helleborus x ericsmithii.) Creamy white up-facing flowers with palest pink reverse. I didn't plan on buying plants of any sort today - just stopped by Southern States Coop to buy bird supplies and a few packets of seeds.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Bobert
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 08:20 PM

How do you spell "addiction", Janie???

Jus'[ funnin'...

We went to the Richmond Flower and Garden Show yesterday and the P-Vine swore that she wasn't going to buy a thing...

Hahahahahaha....

Bought a camellia and a new pair of loping shears... The ratcheting kind...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 08:39 PM

Janie: good point about the poisons in PVC! I wonder if the plants pick them up. Research is necessary. Planting time still far in the future in Montreal.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: maeve
Date: 12 Feb 11 - 11:14 PM

Of course the best course when experimenting with materials used in a manner different from original approved uses is, as Janie said, to do your research. PVC comes in different formulations, some of which are safer than others in terms of chemical leaching. It's used in household plumbing for drinking water in many places. It's used in many growers' hoop houses, too. Many have found approved grades of CPVC pipes to be safer than the old metal plumbing materials, depending upon whether lead and other hazardous materials are leaching from pipes and solder, and what sort of water characteristics are involved (see link to Maine Cooperative Extensioninformation on corrosive water.) Here's a link for those interested in researching pvc safety in regard to use with drinking water and gutter gardens, etc.: National Sanitation Foundation (NSF)
Following from that page, I found this:

"PVC, CPVC, PEX, and Other Plastic Plumbing Materials - Plastic plumbing has been used for potable and non-potable water applications since the 1950s. Initially, there were many concerns about these products potentially leaching harmful chemicals into the water. To ensure that the public's health was protected, independent standards were quickly developed which established strict guidelines for these products.

Today, plastic plumbing products designed for potable water applications are usually designated with either "NSF-PW" or "NSF-61" to indicate that the product complies with the health effects requirements of NSF/ANSI Standard 61 for materials designed for contact with potable water. This standard also establishes similar guidelines for other plumbing materials, including copper tubing. If your pipe is not coded with one of these designations or if it is designated with an alternative code such "NSF-DWV," it is probably not meant for potable water applications and should not be used for such purposes."
************************************
Perhaps one could learn more regarding the safety of PVC gutter materials by sending an email to the NSF International (info@nsf.org).


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 08:26 AM

Expecting temps near 60F today, and almost up to 70F mid-week. Also sunny, windy and dry.

Headed out to Lowe's for composted manure, and maybe a mini-tiller.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Bobert
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 09:30 AM

We has a Mantz mini-tiller, Janie... Nice little tiller for smallish areas... Does not like roots or rocks, though...

Yeah, we have those warm temps headed out way, too... Maybe a day or two behind ya'll...

BTW, most PVC is used for sewage and CPVC for water... I'm surte the CPVC would be fine for planting in but you generally don't find it in anything over an 1" in diameter...

Personally, I think those gutter gardens are more for flowers... I don't think I'd want to eat anything grown in them... Especially when that plastic is out in the sun... Maybe I'm being old fashioned here???

We were just talking about growing peppers and tomatoes this morning with the hopefully impending move and figure we'll just have to grow them in containers this year and move 'um around...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 04:14 PM

When I decided to go big with gardening I bought a mantis. In my ignorance I did not understand the difference between a tiller and a cultivator. Found out pretty quick it was not the equipment to use bust sod in heavy clay soil. After renting a big tiller for that big job, however, the mantis was great for digging in amendments and loosening the soil each spring in the veggie garden, or when completely re-doing a flower bed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 04:52 PM

The mantis, unfortunately (or perhaps not - the vibrations wrecked my knuckle joints,) did not last it's natural life. Hubby or I one grabbed the wrong gas can to fill it from, and burned up the motor for lack of oil in the mix.

Did not buy a tiller today, btw, and owe thanks to Bobert mentioning the mantis for that. I had forgotten what the vibrations did to my hands. My old lawn mower was about as bad. My knuckles are slap worn-out and very fragile. I have no business at all gripping the handle of a tiller. I finally broke down and bought a decent lawn mower when I moved to this place, and because of the shade, I also don't have to mow but once every 4-6 weeks during "grass season." Otherwise, I would have to hire some one to do it to save what I have left in my hands.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 05:40 PM

Sorry folks, I'm on a roll.

Spent 6 hours working in the church of the garden today. G-l-o-r-i-o-u-s!

It may be another 6 months before I have more than an hour a week to do anything at all out in the garden or yard, but all I can say is, It restoreth my soul.

Raked back the dead leaves from the beds, put down a little fertilizer, spread compost, re-shredded the leaves and laid them back down for mulch. Cut back dead stems on perennials that are starting to sprout new leaves under the mulch, pulled dead leaves from daylillies, Raked and mulched still falling oak leaves from here, there, and everywhere, mowed the yard to mulch the oak leaves that had fallen since Christmas, prepared the raised beds for peas, lettuce, onions, spinach and kale, planted violas at the edges of the raised beds and in a hollow tree stump.

Did not get the hellebore planted.

Not having a truck or any friends with a truck is problematic. Buying composted cow manure, garden soil or mulch by the bag is prohibitively expensive. Most of the beds got less than half the compost they need, or at least deserve, and even at that, I didn't have enough to do all the beds.

Also did some watering, though not enough. We are back in severe drought.

Stared intently at the large pile of wood chips from when I had the big oak taken down last summer. They need to be spread around trees. It is a big pile, but not big enough to mulch around all of the trees, and I still can't figure out how to distribute it aesthetically. (also stared intently at the gashes and piles of soil I can't mow over from large branches that plummeted in the process of that tree being taken down, and which the tree guy said he would come back and smooth out, but never did.) That is one of those jobs that a cultivator would make quick work of, but doing it with a shovel, a hoe and a rake will take half a day, and wreck my back and shoulders for a week or more.

Not whining, just struggling to come to terms with limitations.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 08:37 PM

I have a big honker tiller my across the street neighbor gave me. I had it fixed, but then haven't used it because it turns out most of the places I till are better done by hand. I should get it running again and sell it, it takes up space in the garage.

Lovely day today, but I had to work mostly in the house getting ready for company coming tomorrow. I did take a wonderful walk with the dogs, it was probably 75o out there!

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Bobert
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 09:07 PM

Cold as a pump handle here... Wind blowing so hard that a brush fire I thought had gone out a week ago got enough air in the bottom to resurrect it... 'Sposed to blow 45 mph tomorrow... Fun... Not...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 09:56 PM

Sounds miserable, BeauBear - stay warm, but not too warm! Hope that fire has gone out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Bobert
Date: 13 Feb 11 - 10:18 PM

Still burnin', Magz... That's good... It ain't goin' no where... Just burnin' the stumps...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 02:01 PM

I spent a long and discouraging time on line last night: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp (CMHC) has a lot of info on healthy houses and gardens but I could not find any specifics. Went on to "gutters" with no better luck. The jury is still out. I like the idea of hanging gardens but am keeping my mind open for materials. In a small city yard.... Maybe at the junk yard I will find something creative!

In the meantime, two feet of snow covereth all and it is exciting to hear about 75F days but, here, its going DOWN tonight. Thawing now, rain, turning to freezing rain, turning to snow - 19 F tomorrow. Thankful for indoor plants - cyclamen, kalanchoe, African violets and - ta dah! the clivia miniata pulled out one more blossom - not a stalk, just one single flower peeking out from the bottom of the leaves!

I am now waiting patiently (?) for my new - last Tuesday - worm composter to produce compost. It could take a couple months but I look at the critters and talk to them, ask them how it's going. No response. They are not good house pets - or maybe the BEST!??


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: maeve
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 03:43 PM

I've contacted the NSD International, the Maine Cooperative Extension, and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection to inquire about the safety of using CPVC/PVC gutters to grow edible and ornamental plants.

The other use I've seen for PVC (pipes sawn in half lengthwise,) is to make container gardens for starting vegetable seedlings at the desired spacing. When they are ready to transplant, they can be slid directly into the prepared row with minimal root disturbance. I suppose one could line the pipe with whatever inert material one feels content to use. One could experiment and report on results.

There is risk in everything. Many of us grew up in households with lead pipes or lead soldered pipes, polluted city water, unsafe well water, etc. We must each do our homework and make our best choices. It's nice when we pool information with one another.

Maeve


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: maeve
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 02:40 PM

Here's the reply from NSF:
"NSF International has not tested any gutter products for contact with drinking water and could not advise if they might meet potable water standards or be suitable for use in this type of garden. As a suggestion, I would encourage you to contact your nearest county extension office and request to speak with a master gardener about what materials might be suitable for an above ground garden.

Best regards,
Cheryl

Cheryl Luptowski
NSF Consumer Information Officer
info@nsf.org"
***********************************
I'd be content to wash the PVC carefully, then line it with food safe plastic film, or to line it with corrugated cardboard, and I think I'd only use the pipe/gutter containers to start plants prior to planting them in the garden.

Alternatively, what other, more stable materials might work in a similar manner?
Your mileage may vary.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 03:18 PM

Still unseasonably warm, and very, very dry. Never thought I would be irrigating and watering in February but this extended warmth is causing lots of plants to sprout, and the soil is dry down to 6 or 8 inches.

Yesterday I sowed snow peas, lettuces, spinach, kale and onions. Had to really hunt for the Red Russian kale, which is my favorite. Also am trying another variety of Red Russian called Red Winter which is supposed to be sweet even without frost, which should make it a good spring sowed variety. Leaves are supposed to be even more tender than the standard Red Russian.

Laid out new irrigation hose in a few of the beds today, divided a stone crop that was here when I moved in and looked pitiful last summer with the crown dying out, and dug and moved ginger lilies and irises. Wrong time of year to move the irises, but I had stuck them in the ground willynilly 2 years ago - literally grabbed a shovel, dug a hole in the turf, tossed in some compost and then the irises. It kept them alive but just barely, and the grass had all come back.   When we made our pilgrimage to Eastern Kentucy 2 years ago to visit old family graveyards, my 84 year old cousin encouraged Dad and I to dig some of the irises growing on the grave of my great-great grandmother. My cousin's mother had planted them originally. I had planted my Dad's properly and they bloomed last year. They are a very old-fashioned looking iris, two-toned, and have the somewhat smaller flowers typical of many heirloom bearded iris.

Theoretically, I have now come inside to clean house, do laundry, pay bills and make a grocery list. Can't quite make the mental transition yet. Think I'll go fill the bird feeders.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 03:28 PM

Norfolk UK: It's mostly been rainy or misty and at timee windy since the snow thawed in January. There have been few days where the weather has encouraged one to go out into the garden.

Doesn't worry me for my bits in the garden though. I won't be starting those till April.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: maire-aine
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 04:06 PM

Sent in my seed order for Italian broccoli . I saw some in the market when I was on vacation, and I have to try it.

Yesterday there were only 2 patches of snow in the front year, but now it's snowing like crazy again. I've had enough of winter. C'mon, Spring!

Maryanne


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 06:35 PM

I saw a forsythia in full bloom this morning. And my Japanese flowering quince has just started to bloom.

Picked up bags of top soil and humate today to build up some more raised beds.

I have a bay tree to plant. Picked it up this week after trying several places to find one.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 07:28 PM

Beautiful vegetable, Maryanne. I see it is a cauliflower. What is the taste like?


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: maire-aine
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 07:31 PM

I have not tasted it myself, but the write-up says mild broccoli flavor.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 09:15 PM

I'd suggest they are somewhere between the two.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Bobert
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 09:29 PM

Not to worry, Janie... Iris is like a weed and doesn't much care where or when it is planted... Or if it is planted... I've dug 'um up, thrown 'um in the woods bare root and they do fine... No planting involved...

Dry here,too and worse??? Windy... Been watering the stuff in pots I dug up for the move...

Daffies pokin' their head up??? Can spring be far behind???

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 10:56 PM

At the hospital where I work there is a small courtyard in the very center, enclosed on all 4 sides by the wings of the hospital. The daffodils planted there started blooming last week, but I haven't seen them blooming anywhere else yet.

Yeh, Bobert, the wind has been something else.   They weren't too strong today, but have otherwise been quite strong the last 7-10 days.

Bone dry and windy - brush fires all over the State. A few homes destroyed. The fire siren here has gone off so many times the last several days that it has almost become background noise.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Feb 11 - 12:13 AM

Iris are tough, and don't seem to care where they're planted. I've been separating out the colors of mine that got kind of mixed (I'd be given some by a neighbor, and after a couple of years I'd realize I had some striking colors mixed in). I've enjoyed nurturing them into larger populations to spread around and to give away.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Cuilionn
Date: 21 Feb 11 - 11:32 AM

A lovely scattering of snow here in Southern Maine this morning, followed by the strong and hopeful light of the late February sun. Woodpeckers are busy at the edge of the woods. Chickens and bluejays are taking turns thieving from the compost pile. It won't warm up enough for it today, but two days ago the honeybees were out on cleansing flights, a sure sign that Spring Will Come.

All our seeds are sorted and ready to plant, but I have yet to get anything actually planted in flats and set up by the south-facing windows. Our farmhands are experimenting with rosemary from seed (they like a good challenge) and they have grow-lights and trays set up in their room already. I'm hoping to start some things out in the cold frames in our hoop house in the next week or two--maybe kale and snow peas, for starters?

I also want to try artichokes this year. I have a seed packet of "Imperial Star" and it says to start in February... am I too late? Do I need a grow-light to ensure success, or will a windowsill tray be enough? Also, prior to setting them out, should I use a heating mat under the tray or not? Any other Northern gardeners have artichoke-growing tips?

--Cuilionn


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: GUEST,TJO
Date: 21 Feb 11 - 06:22 PM

FWIW, a Kensington, Montgomery County, MD report for y'all.

Some really warm 70 degree days last week -- one of the great things about D.C. area winters is the occasional warm spell that break the cold. But windy, windy the last few days, and 2-4 inches of snow forecast tonight. Our last batch of snow just gone ( in our North-facing sloped property), revealing daffodil leaves up, snowdrops blooming, swelling buds and color on some camellias (which will probably be brown after the snow). One purple azalea blooming !! -- a crazy Korean selection of mucronolatum we got from the National Arboretum years ago that opens buds all winter whenever the temp goes up for a few hours !! Got some nice big batches of cut forsythia inside blooming, but I think we're still a ways from any real action outside.

T.J.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Feb 11 - 02:07 PM

This morning I started seeds for summer vegetables in flats in my sun room. Some things will be started by seed directly in the garden in a couple of weeks, but I'll also use these in April. My neighbor across the street has a rule of thumb that he won't plant his tomatoes before Easter, but other things can be in and going strong by then. Given 6 or 7 weeks most of these should be ready to go into the prepared beds. That means I now have to start with serious bed preparation!

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 22 Feb 11 - 09:02 PM

Was looking at caladium bulbs the other day and wishing I had room to set up my grow lights and shelves here. It is a compact but very productive set-up. Just not compact enough.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Max Johnson
Date: 23 Feb 11 - 01:23 PM

Northern England.

Joys in my garden will be (I hope) the Magnolia, Honeysuckle, Clematis, Yellow Monbrecia and the red one I can't remember the name of. Buddleia. And my favourite - Sweet Peas. And Tree Lilies, just to show that I have a sense of humour.
If it ever stops raining, I'll plant garlic and asparagus, and later, runner beans, broad beans and salad stuff. I hope my rasberry bush survived the harsh winter - we'll see; none of my herbs did except the Rosemary and Sage so I'll have to plant again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Donuel
Date: 23 Feb 11 - 08:46 PM

Our first "spring" flowers bloomed last week in Maryland.

They are those white upside down fiddle flowers that bloom in the snow.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 24 Feb 11 - 05:32 AM

I'm guessing you are talking about galanthus, donuel. Aren't they a wonderful harbinger?


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 24 Feb 11 - 05:33 AM

Whoohoo! 100% chance of rain on Friday!


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: MMario
Date: 24 Feb 11 - 05:48 AM

Still snowing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 24 Feb 11 - 09:59 PM

About 18 inches of snow in yard and another 6 due tomorrow. Spent the afternoon looking at the variety of heritage and other tomato plants I can order from the local food co-op. Will do mainly the low acid white and yellow varieties. Still need to narrow it down to what will fit in small yard.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 24 Feb 11 - 10:23 PM

I love our gardeners threads!


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: freda underhill
Date: 25 Feb 11 - 04:30 AM

I've had seven Weeping Lilly Pillly trees planted by my back fence today. They are already large and leafy and look beautiful. I'll be planting some pink bromiliads and native violets beneath them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: freda underhill
Date: 25 Feb 11 - 04:39 AM

weeping Lilly Pilly

Pink bromiliad

native violets


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 25 Feb 11 - 07:48 AM

Just had a look at our raspberries. They are budding nicely and have survived the winter.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Bobert
Date: 25 Feb 11 - 08:42 AM

We finally got some rain here on the Blue Ridge... Yea!!!

It has been an unusually dry winter... Snow to the south of us and snow to the north but we've only had a total of about 12 inches since December 1st and it has been windy so things were getting very dry...

Okay, it was only .5 inch but we'll take it... The 300 or so pots waiting to move to NC we've had to hand over and over with yucky well water... I mean, good for drinking but plants don't especially love the stuff...

We're still in "short sale limbo" on the NC property but should hear within the next few days and then we'll head down for a couple days to figure out stuff like veggie garden, potting shed, overall garden designs...

There's a place in Warrenton that sells NOS (new old stock) doors and windows extra CHEAP and once I figure out the size potting shed room behind the existing garage, I'll buy what I need to make it work from that guy and haul it with us.... The best we'll be able to do is have as much glass at both ends and perhaps a skylight... Maybe a small greenhouse down the road.... But with grow lights this space oughtta work okay for propagation...

Happy gardening...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 03 Mar 11 - 03:14 PM

AFRICAN VIOLETS??? Not outside, inside but if anyone can clue me in on the great mystery of what is eating JUST the flower petals. Not the centers, not the buds, not the leaves. No, they are not dropping; there is not sign of them anywhere. Gone!! I thought it might be mice but mice cannot climb up a brass plant stand; that is where last night's feast was. Four out of five plants - new about three weeks ago. The remaining one is on top of a wood file cabinet. So far, not touched. These guys were all in full glorious bloom.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Mar 11 - 06:34 PM

Sounds like you need to set a trap, Dorothy. Or cover them with a clear something to keep away the predator. My African violets are also blooming beautifully right now. Only three pots, but that's enough.

My flat of seeds is almost completely sprouted. Another will be started this week. I always spend more than I plan buying bedding plants when I know just a few weeks earlier I could have started them myself. Procrastination costs me money in the yard, for sure. This year I'll save the money on bedding plants and use it on some of the amendments I can use.

Daffodils are up all over the place. So are a lot of weeds that started over the winter. Since the turf is still dormant, I can use my organic weed control without stunting the grass:

Vinegar Herbicide Formula:
1 gallon of 10% vinegar
1 ounce orange oil or d-limonene
1 teaspoon liquid soap or other surfactant such as Bio Wash
Add molasses at 1 tablespoon per gallon to the vinegar formula
Do not add water

It's working. I didn't do it all at once, but a gallon of vinegar at a time. I've been out twice in the last week and do zones, then when I go back I hit any spots I missed, then move to the next zone. I'm trying to keep some of the weeds out of the veggie garden by not letting them hop over from the turf. (I don't really care if there are weeds in the turf, I can mow them, but I don't like them in the garden!)

Here is the whole article about organic weed control.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Janie
Date: 03 Mar 11 - 09:23 PM

I always admire other people's African Violets but have never tried them myself.

I was rushing the season a little bit with my veggie seed sowing, but the Kale and spinach are both starting to sprout and a couple of onions are pushing green tips up above the soil line. I was about to give up on the lettuce, which I expected to germinate first. I still may re-sow, but a couple of sprouts were in evidence this evening, so I will hold off until I get back from West Virginia on Sunday to see what happens over the next few days.

Wishing I had thrown a blanket over the big leaf hydrangea. The long, unseasonably warm spell has caused it to begin to leaf out. It is supposed to get down to 29F tonight.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 04 Mar 11 - 10:55 AM

Confirmed by poster on an African Violet site: mice like AV flowers! Getting more aggressive with two live traps and finding mouse proof places for plants! Guess this is the first time I have had both plants and mice.

Thanks for that recipe, SRS. Copied to file.


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Subject: RE: BS: Mudcat Gardeners report - 2011
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 04 Mar 11 - 11:13 AM

Pulled some leeks up today. Only one more meal for the three of us left now. Chard seems to be doing ok. That's about it here for veg at the moment.


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