garden5
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HG and RG, thanks for the explanation. Do people grow them mainly for the floral aspect or for the edible aspect?

DDF, thanks for the link.

Darn it, Soil! You are making me hungry. All of those berry plants you have sound delicious! I'm sure you have blueberries, as well, don't you?

I was going to ask why you potted the strawberry runners when you were just going to plant them in the garden, but then it occurred to me that you probably want them in a certain area.

From your last post, I'm assuming that the time to propagate berry plants is late fall? Of course, I get snow by Dec., so it may be different for me.

I really want to do strawberries next year, so I'm trying to glean all the info I can about them right now (as you've probably noticed).
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tedln
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I spent the day collecting all the potting soil my wife grows flowers in. I put all of it into one large container, add organic fertilizer and other organic materials to replace nutrients and minerals depleted during the summer. I let the pile age and stabilize over the winter and use it again next year. I do it every year and the flowers my wife grows love it.

I also started placing paving stones between my garden beds. I get tired of walking in mud during rainy periods as I work on my beds.

Ted
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applestar
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Paving stone pathways -- I wonder if that will result in

>> MULCHING EFFECT=Cooler and moisture retention in soil in the paths -- benefit the plants in the raised beds?
>> More heat reflecting up?
>> Warming up earlier in spring due to thermal mass?
>> Sustained heat during the summer?

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soil
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Darn it, Soil! You are making me hungry. All of those berry plants you have sound delicious! I'm sure you have blueberries, as well, don't you?
haha yea 4 varieties. each finishing at a different time so eat blueberries for breakfast for weeks on end.

I was going to ask why you potted the strawberry runners when you were just going to plant them in the garden, but then it occurred to me that you probably want them in a certain area.
both. if every runner rooted the area would become quite congested, eventually the patch can get so thick the fruit gets this moldy rot. so i root the runners, plant them where i want more strawberries, give them away, or sell them. when the plants have space they produce a lot better imo. i get them about 8-10 inches apart, but i have various other things growing in that space like chamomile for example.
From your last post, I'm assuming that the time to propagate berry plants is late fall? Of course, I get snow by Dec., so it may be different for me.
you could probably still do it, though i suspect for heavy snowfall the fall would be best, but spring is an option. the only problem with that is that you don't have established plants to plant in the spring(though fall planting is smart) you just bend over a branch that just fruited, take the leaves off the tip, stick it in a pot. in a few weeks itl root. let it get a nice root system then cut it from the mother at the base of the cane. plant in spring or fall for more delicious berries.
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tedln
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Applestar,

The paving stones don't have any scientific basis. They just keep the wife from getting mad at me when I track mud into the house. When she asks me why I paved the area around the beds, I will give her the technical reasons you provided. Thank You!

Ted
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jal_ut
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when the plants have space they produce a lot better imo.
I have been preaching that forever regarding all plants. I am glad someone agrees with me. :)

Just to keep this on topic, today I went out and looked at my garden. It has been a bit warmer for a few days and the snow is melting. I actually have a bit of bare ground. Alas, still almost 4 months before I can plant.
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Sani
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my tomato plants are getting taller so I tied the top stems to the bamboo stake after watering.

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!potatoes!
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as of saturday:

last harvest: dug my oca, my chufa, and my two last yacon plants. another year of experimentation with perennial rootcrops comes to a close.

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up-potted 10 tomato plants and 10 basils, also pruned and staked accordingly. :)

tedln
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!potatoes! wrote:as of saturday:

last harvest: dug my oca, my chufa, and my two last yacon plants. another year of experimentation with perennial rootcrops comes to a close.
t

What do you do with the Chufa? I'm only familiar with it as an attractant crop for wild turkeys which dig and eat it's tubers.

Ted
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!potatoes!
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this will give ammunition to my wife's suggestion that I'm a turkey, but i dig and eat the tubers. they're awful hard fresh, but soften with cooking (texture is still crunchy/kinda crystalline, flavor is sweet and mild)...I'm told that the original recipe for horchata used these 'tiger nuts'...though i haven't used them for that. mostly as an ingredient in soups or casseroles (also stuffing for thanksgiving - but i think that counts as a casserole)...

just something I'm looking at as i diversify my perennial food options. this was the first year i grew them. never had a problem with wild turkeys getting into them, either, though there's lots of the big birds around here. will likely do five times as much next year. they do taste good, and are not quite as much a pain to clean as i had been led to believe.

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!potatoes! wrote:as of saturday:

last harvest: dug my oca, my chufa, and my two last yacon plants. another year of experimentation with perennial rootcrops comes to a close.
Dang it! Now there's MORE stuff I've just got to try! :lol:

It sounds like the oca isn't going to like my heat, though, so that leaves the chufa and the yacon. Do you have varieties you can recommend? I'm reading that it's hard to find anything but the white yacon in the USA.

I'm also reading about the larger, Spanish varieties of chufa, but I'm having trouble finding anything to purchase but the smaller, native chufa.

Where did you get yours, what varieties have you tried (if you found more than one) and which would you recommend (if you've had a chance to find more than one)?
Sharon
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soil
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dug three 15' swales and a 15' hugelkultur bed. im beat! bring on the rain now. :twisted:
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thanrose
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While I didn't actually do anything, I surveyed the freeze damage we Floridians have been complaining about. My edible ginger hung on forever this year, the leaf tips had just started yellowing when the couple hours of freeze hit. The thing is, if I trim away all the wilted greenery, and we get another freeze, it will damage the ginger rhizomes or the base of the impatiens and crossandra. So I leave the dead, prostrate stems and greenery to shroud the roots. I've had the same freaking impatiens for the last five years. Maybe 3-4 freezes last winter, and a few over the previous years.

My malanga is wilted to the ground, but I expect the corms to be just fine. Not eating them this year. I just like growing them, but will probably eat some next fall. The freeze is nothing like the hard freezes you northerners get. It wouldn't occur to anyone here that the ground could actually freeze solid for a few inches. Mud season is completely unfathomable once you've lived here for a while. Hibiscus next to the house is producing tiny blooms, maybe two inches across, one every other week or so. It froze to the ground last winter. Mosquitoes are definitely snowbirds. Stiff and slow, and they whine with a New York accent. (Probably hatched in my lanai's aquarium. My bad.)

Oh, I cut some cedar and arborvitae for Christmas, in a pot with sprays of scrub pine cones at my front step. I hate bringing my potted poinsettia in during the holidays. It just starts to put on great bracts and now it's too cold for it to sit outside overnight.

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Francis Barnswallow
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I took the sheets off my garden today. Not much freeze damage. :D :D

tedln
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Francis,

You changed your avatar! I liked your other avatar. It brought back memories of a girl I used to date.

Not much to do in the garden today. My beds are ready fro spring planting. Now I am just waiting for mid January to plant my onions and start my seed germinating for my spring garden. I ordered some more tomato seed last night. I'm addicted. I wonder if there is a twelve step program to break a seed ordering addiction.

Ted
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applestar
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What I WANT to do is cut some holly and other evergreens and make a wreath. As it is, the daytime high has been refusing to rise above the 20's, so I can't cut the branches (both pruning books I have recommends NEVER to cut frozen wood). So I'll have to wait. Maybe after this storm passes through -- we're only supposed to get the northern edge of the snow.
tedln wrote:I wonder if there is a twelve step program to break a seed ordering addiction
:lol: There are several milestones when you begin to question your sanity and it dawns on you that you might have a problem. 1st is when you start running out of room under the lights. But it can be delayed as long as you have money to shell out for more and space to put them up. A subset of this is when you start totaling up the money you're spending on "dirt." 2nd is when you start constantly shuffling the seedlings around and stacking things under the drip trays to even up the top of the foliage under the lights and notice how obsessive you are becoming. 3rd major crisis can occur when you start lugging all the babies in and out to enjoy brief moments of sunshine and warmth and you start paying unnaturally close attention to the temperature and weather forecasts. :wink:

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soil
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I wonder if there is a twelve step program to break a seed ordering addiction.
yup its called saving your own seed, but thats a whole other addiction in itself lol. and most likely even worse except its light on your wallet.
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!potatoes!
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Odd Duck wrote:
!potatoes! wrote:as of saturday:

last harvest: dug my oca, my chufa, and my two last yacon plants. another year of experimentation with perennial rootcrops comes to a close.
Dang it! Now there's MORE stuff I've just got to try! :lol:

It sounds like the oca isn't going to like my heat, though, so that leaves the chufa and the yacon. Do you have varieties you can recommend? I'm reading that it's hard to find anything but the white yacon in the USA.

I'm also reading about the larger, Spanish varieties of chufa, but I'm having trouble finding anything to purchase but the smaller, native chufa.

Where did you get yours, what varieties have you tried (if you found more than one) and which would you recommend (if you've had a chance to find more than one)?
not much new info for you on this stuff, I'm afraid. i got the yacon from a local grower (white with purple highlights)...it's good and sweetens up pretty nicely, but i don't have experience with any other varieties to compare.

the chufa, i got seed from baker creek heirloom seeds last year. the tubers are mostly pretty small, but a few are as big around as, say, a quarter.

perhaps oca could be grown under a bit of shade in your area? it slowed down in the heat of the summer for me, but never conked out. our seasons here are just a bit short for it (it's day-length sensitive, and needs at least a couple months after fall equinox to fully ripen tubers - not possible here without serious season extension - but it may work alright in you area... just a thought)

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lorax
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Odd Duck, Oca will do fine in your heat, actually - so long as you can provide it with at least 25% shade. That's how it's grown in the highlands here, and it does great (although it's also a native here, so caveat lector...) Generally, it's grown underneath other crops, like Tomate de Arbol, to keep the moisture in the soil.

You could also try out Mashua (Tropaeoleum tuberosum) - an edible-tubered creeping Nasturtium, which loves the high heat. The tubers are pretty tasty, too!

---

Today in the garden, I finished a hothouse for my bananas, and I'm just taking a break preparatory to building a new brick raised bed for my herbs and lettuces and whatnots. Depending on how fast I get that done, I may also propagate my hops vines and pot up some tomatoes. And if there's still daylight after that, I'll probably build some more tomato cages - the Cherokee Purples and Pineapples look like they're ready for some support. But only if there's light, because I hate soldering in the dark.

Then I'll harvest some bush beans and fresh zucchini for dinner.

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Francis Barnswallow
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You changed your avatar! I liked your other avatar. It brought back memories of a girl I used to date.
:lol:

I accidently erased the file that was the avatar. He'll be back up after Christmas.

Odd Duck
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Hmm. good info, thanks to both of you.

Lorax, can you tell me more about varieties I might look for - of any of these plants?

Boy, I do love an international forum!

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rainbowgardener
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Didn't do anything in the garden, but I was out shovelling snow out of the driveway, in case that counts...
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tedln
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Francis Barnswallow wrote:
You changed your avatar! I liked your other avatar. It brought back memories of a girl I used to date.
:lol:

I accidently erased the file that was the avatar. He'll be back up after Christmas.
HHHHeeeeee?

Ted
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tedln
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Lorax,

"I don't like soldiering in the dark" = Fer-De-Lance?

What do you use the hops for? I'm only familiar with it when brewing beer.

Did you get the tomato seed I sent you a few weeks ago? I don't know how long stuff takes to get to Ecuador.

Ted
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lorax
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Ted - Soldering (ie using solder and flux to join metal), not Soldiering (ie tromping through the bush).... I don't like to solder in the dark because I tend to burn myself with the iron or with falling drops of hot solder. It has nothing to do with snakes - I'm in the highlands at the moment, and they're not an issue here.

I use hops for brewing as well. This means that I also malt my own grains for mashing (because home brewing of beers is unknown in Latin America). It's a fun hobby, and it allows me to indulge my passion for stouts and bitters, which are flat out not available here. I don't do lagering, though, for reasons that should be fairly obvious.

I did indeed get the tomato seed, and I thought I'd pm'd you but obviously not. Such things occasionally slip my mind, and for that I apologize! I'll be starting them in the next cycle (since I've currently got 15 plants going and no room for more).

Odd Duck - I don't know from named varieties, lol! :() For Ocas, the red-tubered type is probably the best heat performer.

For Mashua, I've got no clue - Nasturtiums in general love heat, and the orange-tubered kind are tastiest (the other variety has white tubers, which I find kind of insipid). The orange ones are pleasantly sweet, with just a hint of peppery goodness.

You should also look into Melloco (Ullucus tuberosum), since they're less day-length dependant for tuber production, and perform better under really punishing conditions. They're also hardier than Oca. I have no idea where you'd source them, though.

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cherishedtiger
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Yesterday - took off cover only to find a colony of slugs had moved in and feasted upon my lovely veggies...

treated for slugs, left uncovered to get the nice warm sun only to have it freeze last night because I came home late and never covered it back up...

:cry:
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Odd Duck
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Lorax,

Thanks for all the info. Now I just need to find sources for all this cool stuff!
Sharon
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Francis Barnswallow
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tedln wrote:
Francis Barnswallow wrote:
You changed your avatar! I liked your other avatar. It brought back memories of a girl I used to date.
:lol:

I accidently erased the file that was the avatar. He'll be back up after Christmas.
HHHHeeeeee?

Ted


Oh yes, a HE. I got the pic from uglypeople.com.

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rainbowgardener
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Francis - Out of curiosity I checked the website you mentioned. Turned out to be a p o r n site of decidedly non-ugly but provocatively naked people. Don't appreciate that... what if I had been on my work computer? What if kids tried it? This is supposed to be a family friendly place, please don't refer us to (bleeped) sites!
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Francis Barnswallow
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rainbowgardener wrote:Francis - Out of curiosity I checked the website you mentioned. Turned out to be a p o r n site of decidedly non-ugly but provocatively naked people. Don't appreciate that... what if I had been on my work computer? What if kids tried it? This is supposed to be a family friendly place, please don't refer us to (bleeped) sites!

I haven't been to that site in years, and the last time I was on that site, it didn't have any EDITED material on it. I wouldn't have posted the site if I knew it had EDITED on it. My apologies.

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applestar
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It was 15ºF outside when I woke up this morning, but I'm still puttering around inside. 8)

I had some tulip and crocus bulbs left over so I potted them up and put them out in the garage to "chill". They'll provide nice late winter/early spring color when I bring them in to grow and bloom later on.

Back on Dec. 1, since I have the soil heating pad going for the pepper cuttings, I put a smallish white sweet potato I bought before Thanksgiving from Whole Foods (conventional not organic) in a clear plastic beverage cup from a fastfood place filled halfway up with water. The straw opening in the lid was perfect for holding the stem end and suspending the potato in the water. Well, today, I noticed that 1" roots are growing out of it! :D (Good to know this wasn't treated to suppress sprouting :wink:)

rkunsaw
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For the past several days I've covered my garden with partially composted grass and leaves that have been piled up all year and then covered that with two or more inches of top soil.
My wife has been looking through the seed catalogs already. :roll:
I started with nothing and still have most of it!!!

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soil
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i watched all my swales fill with water doing there job while i was nice and dry working in the greenhouse. potting plants, amending soil, propagation.
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DeborahL
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I saved my radishes from drowning. We're having heavy rains all week.
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ajijoe
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coffee grounds&MISC STUFF

its winter now here in PA
i dumped some coffee grounds and tea bags on my rows today, i do this everyday
i also throw all my kitchen scrapes on it as well, i never stop com[posting my garden
thanks your friend AJIJOE
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Sani
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mulch mulch mulch.. I mulched over 40 pots; and that's how a 20 yr girl spends her afternoon :wink:

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soil
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it stopped raining for once so i went out and did some clean up, pruning, mulching, tidying up a little.
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

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