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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I sorted the kernels from Applestar’s Medley #sweet# cobs pictured in the copied post below, and selected the seed corn I want to grow this year — mostly with the shriveled and shrunken indicators of sweet corn genetics, but a few domed popcorn-flintcorn types which I’m hoping are the ones that took from hand pollinating with Japanese Striped Maize.

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Subject: Applestar's 2017 Garden
Mon Sep 25, 2017 11:46 am
applestar wrote:It's really bumming me out that the question of how-to hand pollinate those Pink and Purple Mexican corn is becoming moot. I have been looking and looking, but see no sign of silks emerging, while the tassels have been maturing and dropping pollen. :?

HOWEVER, I did harvest some more fun corn for sorting and saving as seeds. The best part is that one of these Applestar's Medley #popcorn# and at least another one that's still green and will be harvested when ready have a small chance of having caught some of the Pink and Purple Mexican corn pollen. Image

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

So beautiful! Can you eat them or is it just popcorn?

I'm very boring and just grow Silver Queen, because it has done well for me and it is what we love to eat....
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I was trying to remember if I had tried to explain all this before — and found a thread :lol: What does Silver Queen seed corn kernels look like?

Subject: Isolate Corn? Avoid Cross-pollination? Hah! LOL
Mon Aug 15, 2016 3:42 pm
applestar wrote:Here are some fun corn you can grow if you INTENTIONALLY cross/hand-pollinate your corn Image

I don't know what I'm doing, though. All I know is that the shrunken kernels are likely due to the the (sh) genes that make the sweet corn hybrid varieties sweet. I'd love it if you could comment on what you see. Any thoughts? Tips? Advice for what to do next?


Harvested today -- Kandy Korn x Glass Gem F2, self pollinated and/intentionally crossed with available pollen from Mirai350BC, Ashworth, Double Red Sweet, volunteer that might be Bloody Butcher.


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I'm definitely going to save the seeds from that top one with ALL the different colors separately. That one is a beauty. DD jokingly asked if she could EAT that one :roll: – I told her she can eat what grows from them next year :D
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Harvested a few days ago

MIrai350BC cobs -- .Lots of shrunken kernels? Some are shrunken but GG like?
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In the next group, same top and bottom as above but the middle one is Ashworth for comparison
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Here are more Ashworth
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Mirai350BC x Double Red Sweet F1
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Corn tassels appear and actually have more pollen than they need. Apparently lots of plants do this. Just like the male cucurbit and papaya putting out male flowers first, to attract the pollinators. Corn is wind pollinated, but bees also love corn and may assist wild corn to cross pollinate. The first ears of corn are ready to pick 10 days after the tassels appear. I don't have a large stand of corn so I bag my tassels and hand pollinate. You could do the same and bag the tassels and save the pollen a few days to give the ears a chance to emerge and to do some cross pollination of your own. Pollen has a limited life span. It is why you can isolate corn pollination if you plant different or the same varieties (that mature) at least two weeks apart.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Ooh sounds good, imafan. I hand cross-pollinate by collecting pollen from tassels, but don’t protect the silks. I also plant these in a mixed patch and shake the pollen onto each other’s silks.

How do you “save” the pollen? Or do you mean just bag the tassels and use the pollen collected in the bags? I generally distribute the pollen as soon as I collect them — usually just what falls on a folded Manila folder since I get impatient trying to get a tassel inside a too small bag or bags that refuse to stay open. haha.

Varieties that I’ve grown before, I have a better idea, but I rely on maturity days and stagger planting times, too. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

In addition to temperatures, direct sunlight, and wind, it’s very important to check and see if the seedlings need water before leaving them for the night and first thing in the morning for sure. I still find “hefting” to be the best indicator, and tedious as it may be, it IS best to heft-check each individual container. (I find cells can be difficult to tell which is dry and which is wet — still best to use daisy/mesh tray and dunk/bottom water)

For tomato plants, when overnight forecast is around mid-40’s°F, actual temp can be low 40’s here, so I cover the tubs with their snap on lids, then wrap with a layer of heavy garden fleece, then a mesh tarp for good measure. I also do this when heavy rain is forecast. In this case, the picnic table with solid surface, raised above the ground level cold air provides additional insurance/insulation

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Once the rays of the rising sun reach the tubs, I remove the wraps and angle the lids open for ventilation but not all the way yet — there is warm air under the lids and heavy condensation on the inside walls. A little while later when the temperature in the sun is in mid-50’s, I go out again and remove the lids completely, as well as take out the pepper tub that spent the too-cold-for-peppers night inside.

You can see my oldest tray of seedlings outside of the tubs but sheltered in between. Another one spent the night out in the open but on the more sheltered patio table, where the first rays of the morning sun shines — it was later moved aside to give way to the pepper tub. Older plant tubs will/are also moved down to the seat level to expose them to slightly cooler temps.

In the bottom photo, you can see that corn which doesn’t need as much temperature protection are being left out with their lids removed. The shoes rack/shelves are deterrent against curious squirrels and birds.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

applestar wrote:In addition to temperatures, direct sunlight, and wind, it’s very important to check and see if the seedlings need water before leaving them for the night and first thing in the morning for sure. I still find “hefting” to be the best indicator, and tedious as it may be, it IS best to heft-check each individual container. ...
Most of the watering so far this year has been with a basin and setting flats full of containers in there and leaving them ... quite some time! Tedious, yet again :wink: ! This approach will continue until the plants are strong enough to stand up under a watering wand.

Several years ago, I thought - how might someone know when to water if they have not had the experience of hefting all those trays containing different containers, 6-packs, 4-packs, 4" pots, 8" pots, or hefting individual containers? How might they practice?

I'm sure that it would differ somewhat by potting soil. It might also differ by preference but just for me: I weighed some trays of containers, soil and plants that I felt needed some water. Then, I weighed them after they had soaked up all the water they could but had been allowed an hour or so to drip out excess. They had doubled in weight.

Anyone could do this. Perhaps a novice could start from a thoroughly soaked plant in its container. Divide the weight by 1/2. Watch carefully as it dries and loses weight, rules of thumb (or, digitS' :wink: ) shouldn't be allowed to kill a plant, or put it in an unhealthy state.

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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I use paper bags to collect pollen. I do use the pollen collected in the bag. If you want to know what you are crossing you can bag the ears so you can pollinate with a known variety. I don't have room to do a mixed planting and the UH corn and silver queen varieties mature in about 80 days. I usually plant silver queen in summer and UH corn as the third crop since it is a tropical corn and will still mature with an 11 hour day. Silver Queen needs the max daylight I get (14 hours). Monsanto, Pioneer and the other seed companies that bought the sugar lands here grow seed corn in our winter with additional lights because of our usually predictable weather, and can grow corn through the winter months. In fact they don't grow their seed corn in summer because they don't want to accidentally cross their corn with local corn growers. The do bag their tassels and silks and they do not allow farmers on their rented fringe lands to grow corn or soy beans (their other crop) so they have a buffer of at least 600 ft. In summer they grow mustard as a cover crop. The seed corn is a temperate corn so it does better in cooler weather. Our locally developed corn from the UH is a tropical corn. It has a long maturity of 80 days but only needs 12-14 hours of daylight.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I still haven’t had the chance to plant the artichokes :roll:
...but they are greening up and looking less pathetic — either the warmer temperatures or the bit of fertilizer I gave them ... or both

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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Earlier this year on March 11th, I went to a free rain barrel making workshop sponsored by the Pinelands Preservation Alliance and the AmeriCorps NJ Watershed Ambassadors Program. Until the worst of the spring freezing temperature fluctuations were over, I left the barrel covered and isolated, then with the arrival of the thaw and spring rains, I hooked it up to capture the overflow from my existing rainbarrel.

The new barrel was 2/3 full when I started using it for watering my seedlings that had started their hardening off process to acclimate to the great outside world.

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...it’s about 1/2 full now ...but we’re (hopefully) expecting more rain soon ...we didn’t get the little sprinkle that had been forecast for last night.

I sold some of my started plants at a plant sale at the local Agricultural Center :()
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...One of the customers invited me to participate in another event at beginning of June, and I was also asked about starting a regular table at the Farmer’s Market. Hmmm... I’m going to have to think about this... :D
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I somehow didn’t post about these and didnt even write down in my garden diary or take photos — I must have been in a hurry and then got too busy — but I planted these around three days ago.

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...oh! I found it! I did make a visual record of sorts in the Numbers Garden Journal. According to this I planted them on 5/2.
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- cabbage, Brunswick
- cabbage, Cuor di Bue
- cabbage, Kalibos
- broccoli, Romanesco
- kale, Dazzling Blue
- kale, Red Chidori F1
- kale, Beira Tronchuda
- cilantro, Dynamo

- cauliflower, Veronica
- broccoli, Solstice
- lettuce, Rosemarry
- lettuce, Valmaine
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Hi Applestar! Thanks for popping by my little thread.
Red Robin is considered a “micro dwarf” and only grows to about 12 inches (18 inches including the pot). I had them - and their sister variety Yellow Canary - growing under lights last fall through early winter in plastic tubs that on-line ordered marzipan cookies and coconut macaroons come in ... I think they are about 3 quart size. Sweet tasty fruits. Have you grown them before? I think you will like them.
Yes, this is my third year (IIRC) growing Red Robins from saved seed. I'm not a huge fan of grape and cherry tomatoes, but I wanted some little plants for my hanging baskets. I chose the RRs because my father's name is Robin, and his birthday is in late April, and I thought some seedlings would be a cute gift. :() He enjoyed them. He's always liked growing tomatoes. I will definitely look into those other micro dwarfs, thanks for the tip.

Best of luck if you decide to 'expand' into farmers market tables!
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Got the artichokes planted. :clap:

I decided to plant them in the two VG.PSRB’s (Vegetable Garden - Pallet Sided Raised Beds). These PSRB’s are pseudo-hugelkultur, with decaying branches and logs in the bottom, and are high enough to require some thought into what to plant: Shallow-rooted and moisture hungry plants are out. The swale/paths in front of them, as well as the neighbor’s side yard on the other side of the fence can get pretty swamped, so the moisture is available, but the plants need to be able to handle drier soil up top and grow long exploratory feeder roots that can also withstand soggy subsoil layers.

In the past, sunflowers, corn, and eggplants, as well as indeterminate and cherry tomatoes, luffah and cucumbers have done well here. Salvias, Nasturtiums, and Balsam are others that have adapted well in these beds.

This year, the Emerald F1 artichokes are planted, along with Swiss Chard (“5-color Silverbeet”). There is room for something else as well, I think, until the artichokes gain their foothold.

In the VG.SIP (Vegetable Garden - Sub-Irrigated Planter), I planted one artichoke to see if constant even moisture and high level of nutrients will make a difference for the artichoke, and also planted the remaining 4 Veronica F1 cauliflowers and some lettuce which will benefit from the moisture but probably won’t last long here where it is one of the first beds to get the direct sun and heats up fast.

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...I made a collage to show how they actually look...(click for enlarged view)
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I managed to prep VGA (Vegetable Garden [bed] A) and weeded VGB. I didn’t think the Gobo in VGA would last this long - this is it’s 3rd year.... I’m thinking 2 watermelon in the middle, and cabbages and kales on either side, since this bed was tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, and basil last year. Cucumbers on the trellis in VGB (last year’s satellite indeterminate tomato bed).

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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Everything is looking great! Off to a good start!
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Thanks KayJay and Rainbowgardener :D
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

... I always experience and expect the diminished physical strength and endurance coming out of the winter into spring — and Not being able to accomplish as much each day as I remember being able to back in the fall, after a full season of conditioning in the garden. Usually though, there has been a slow rebuilding of strength and muscle tone as the weather warms up in late winter and early spring.

This year, I came out of winter with two injuries in critical areas — my old shoulder/rotator cuff injury on my dominant side that had begun to act up making it impossible to lift even the lightest object let alone carry them, and bursitis/sciatica causing excruciating pain in my right hip and down the leg. Both of these joints somehow ending up with pinched nerve on occasion to make it even worse. That plus the cold and frost that dragged on and taking care of my aging parents that is adding to my time/energy consumption, resulting in delays in spring gardening, and I’m finding myself planning the day’s garden activities that are beyond my ability to accomplish — especially when I throw in additional tasks that are time consuming and energy depleting, but needed to be done ...usually having to do with cleanup that should have been taken care of a month ago.... :roll:


Yesterday, I ended up re-piling my plastic compost bin. It has a nice design — remove lid, slide off Four plastic stays, and remove the front and back halves of the wall, start the new pile next to the old with materials from the top, re-assemble the bin around it and finish building the pile, layering in fresh materials to balance the mixture until the old pile is down to semi-finished compost. Winter pile is hardly consumed, so only maybe 1/5 of the pile was semi-finished, but that approximately 8 inch high bottom section was literally ROILING with red wigglers.

I emptied out the finished compost in one of my compost tumblers into one of the Veg Garden beds, and put most of the chunky but fully decomposed unfinished compost in it. The tumbler allows me to quickly mature the compost.

Then I cleaned out the Can-o-Worms which I had left outside covered with heavy garden fleece — hardly Enough for this winter’s severe, negative single digit temperatures — by putting the little bit of good looking vermicast in one tray in the tumbler and emptying the undigested moldy looking scraps and bedding in the newly re-piled compost bin. Gave the trays a quick wash and filled one of the trays with the unfinished compost full — and I mean FULL — of red wigglers. THERE! Can-o-Worms has been repopulated! (I still have to bring out the 2 gallon stacked vermicomposter of worms — they can have another tray to themselves). I then set up the Can-o-Worms in the shaded area next to the blueberry bed (Yeah that’s another project that needs doing — I WAS going to dig up and move the blueberry bushes that had become MOST shaded by the neightbor’s fence border-planted pine trees and re-configure the blueberry bed early this spring.... )

That still left me with about 4 inches of nearly finished compost that were still full of worms — I needed to do something with it all, but really didn’t have the time. So I ended up half filling the Rubbermaid SIP I emptied to re-fill (the old SIP potting mix went in the VG.PSRB and VGA the other day). To keep out the robins and other raiders, I “covered” the compost with the sub-irrigation platform. Hopefully that is enough. With any luck, the worms will migrate down, away from the light, and let me take out the compost without getting in the way. I might also scoop out onto a tarp for a quick sorting first.

Since I have more than enough worms for the vermicomposter already, I’ll distribute the rest of the worms and compost in the garden and use the worms to “Verm” the container plants as they come out of the house — which Also needed to be done yesterday.

— Once high 70’s and the 80’s temperatures arrive, I want all the plants out so the plant lights don’t add to the heat in the house, and so I can close all the window curtains and blinds to block out the sun. I also want to be able to open/close as well as clean the windows which I can’t access while the plants are crowding around them. Some of these plants could have come out a little earlier, but basically same schedule as tomatoes — once all danger of frost is over and 50’s or above. In most cases, they need to be up- or re-potted once they go outside....

The SIP doesn’t have drainage holes except for the one higher up in the side so I will have to deal with the remaining worms the compost very soon — moreover, I intended to plant some of the peppers in it, so yeah — I just added an extra step to THAT project. But I didn’t have another tub that could handle the weight and volume.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Sorry to hear you are having so much trouble with pain, applestar. But sounds like you are being very productive even so!

You are still waiting for temps to get into the 80's? High today 91, tomorrow 92. Then we get some rain and a cool down, back into the 80's
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Thanks @rainbowgardener — I tend to push through whatever ails me, so when I go down, you know it’s pretty serious.

I planted tomatillos today. I had four plants but sold one at the plant sale. I mixed up seeds from ones labeled “purple” and ones labeled “green” so I don’t know which ones these are. It will be a surprise. :D They were completely pot-bound and had started to bloom.

@rainbowgardener, they were starting to have lower leaves that had turned bright yellow....


...I’ve never grown tomatillos before, I wonder will these useless-for-tomato cages be enough??

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...I also managed to get the VGC section inside the fence, where giant plants of volunteer strawberries are trying to take over — I Think I will plant cherry tomatoes in leftover spaces around them — as well as the VGC/VGD combined 4x4 bed prepped to plant before it started raining heavily enough for me to call it quits. :-() ...I’m putting down some dolomitic lime, Pennsylvania mushroom compost, Black Kow composted cow manure, and BumperCrop.

(...that sounds confusing, I need to assign new designations for these beds since I reconfigured the bed spaces. :| )

...I have to figure out where to plant that pepper ...I think that’s Giant Sweet Devil’s Horn.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I planted the VGA (Vegetable Garden [bed] A) yesterday morning :D ...yes, they are a little too close, but the cabbages and kale can be removed as necessary and as the summer heat wears them down. This will do for now. In addition to the composted cow manure, mushroom compost, and BumperCrop I added, there are tons of earthworms here — mostly Nightcrawlers that favor the wet clay subsoil underneath the raised bed which had been originally scraped and double dug to the bare clay, as well as red wigglers that live in the constantly mulched with yard debris/weeds swale.paths.

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... and, today, insect netting (swaths of tulle) draped over and secured in place to keep out Cabbage White Butterflies and Cabbage Moths. Plus if any aphids and sucking insects manifest inside, I can release ladybugs.

Before finishing, I had to evict a yellow jacket who seemed intent on inspecting every plant as well as nook and cranny. I’m assuming since she didn’t find anything, the plants are still free from infestation... unless the thing is waiting for eggs to hatch into more sizable caterpillars... ? I got it out of there once, then before I finished securing all gaps/openings, it snuck back in again and had to be escorted out. :roll:

BTW half the water in the VG.SIP remote reservoir bucket was gone this morning, so the siphon has been activated and is working. now I just have to keep the bucket filled and the SIP will be automatically refilled with water. Image
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I’m finally getting around to tackling the big garden beds on NE side of the house (opposite side of the house from the VG beds). This area is lower and colder with house shadow completely shading the entire area during the winter, and by mid-afternoon in spring. So it stays soggy for a long time ...but this year, I am especially late.

In the following collage, upper half shows how I barely managed to start weeding the far section (Haybale Row and Sunflower House+Sunflower House Extension) yesterday in the high 80’s/low 90’s blazing heat and had to give up raking up the debris. Lower half shows this morning’s cleanup of the Spiral Garden in the light drizzling rain, beheading all the grass inflorescence/spike that grew to 3-4 feet, then cutting the remaining “hay” down as mulch.

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The beheaded inflorescence filled a cat litter bucket (is that 4 gallon or 5 gallon?) — my neighbor gave me some more buckets ...they are SO handy around the garden! :() I packed them down by stomping on them with my booted foot, then filled the bucket to the top with nutrient-rich rain water saved from the hardening off started plant trays. I’ll keep stomping them down to submerge and they will ferment and be digested by microbes into “drowned weeds juice” — Nitrogen-rich fertilizer. They should start bubbling and foaming in a few days to a week, and when the foaming action subsides, and the mixture smells like fresh horse manure, you know it’s basically done. It’s a good way to dispose of weeds that are too mature and pose danger of dropping seeds, though just like horse manure, not all seeds will be killed.

What I like about this method is it can thwart those pesky weeds that will refuse to die and will mature immature soft seeds if allowed to remain dry. The strained liquid will be used as soil drench fertilizer, and the leftover digested plant matter will very quickly heatup the compost pile.

I plan on using this to feed the corn, squash, and melons.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Spiral Garden is currently being slowly taken over by strawberries. They are blooming and earliest have small green berries on them. There are wild strawberries and Sea Scape cultivar mixed in there, and I really need to mark the large-fruiting day neutral Sea Scape better, so I can encourage more of them to spread and not as much of the Wild strawberries, which are fantastic in their own way but are only June bearing.

Generally speaking, since I grow taller-growing tomatoes, winter squash, and corn as main rotation crop in this bed, the strawberries don’t seem to bother them as companion ground cover. And since they spread on their own, I have no compunction about taking out ones growing where I want to plant the main crop. (...but this is another season to know which ones NOT to dig up.)

Spikey looking blue-green leaves are fall-planted garlic. I was reviewing my notes and was disappointed to note that not all of the late-planted cloves seem to have established. Oh well, we will see.

There is the elderberry at the entrance to the Spiral, of course. There are a few other things growing in the Spiral Garden that were left in place on purpose, including a patches of hot pink Coral Reef Beebalm, variegated Creeping Charley, and Purpurea milkweed. There is also some kind of shrub — a fresh-cut branch that I had used for tomato stake one year — which seems to have rooted. I have to compare leaves and ID which one it is. :>
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Hope your feeling well and hope your parents are doing OK.

My woes aren't near as bad a yours but I get it. My main problem is by May I loose my gardening motivation, more so this year than last year, I don't know why but it's more mental than physical. By late June I'll be bouncing off the walls with excitement (harvest time).

How my little brain works is I take on a project and go balls-to-the-wall and sort of fizzle out. I'm the type of person that when I get something in my head I have to try it, first it's researched, built in my head, then I transfer to paper then build it. Most of the time it works out well. You can see that in my Koi Pond.
The last four years I have been very aggressive with my outdoor stuff. I go all out, try new things then tweak.
I got heavy into Hydroponics then switched back to soil. It wasn't difficult but I stressed too with adding nutrients and heat waves. I don't like to be stressed so the Hydro was out.

I look at what works and what was work! For instance, I love my air pruning pots but replenishing the soil and putting them away each season was becoming a chore, so now I only use a few Air pruning pots.

My arborvitaes were looking shabby in the back and were a bear to maintain so they were replaced with a fence, lighting, perennial flowers and perennial edibles.

My vertical towers worked great the first couple of years but changing out the potting mix is near impossible, so I removed one this year and will remove the other next year.

My Bradford pear trees were becoming dangerous and a nuisance, they all came out, 5 of them, this reduced my stress a great deal and also gave me a ton more gardening options.

My compost bin was great until late winter, I think I added too much cardboard too late in the season and it filled up quickly. My tweaks this year is to use less cardboard. Also to keep the bin from filling too quickly, whatever I trim out of the garden, stays in the garden. I have weed and volunteer veggie plants growing everywhere, I don't stress over these on a daily basis and pull some here and there and/or cover them up with garden trimmings.
When weeding troublesome weeds and if the weeds haven't gone to seed, they get pulled and placed on top of the beds also, if they have gone to seed, they get dumped in a 5 gallon bucket with rainwater, then later will be dumped in the compost bin.

I allow my lettuces, cabbages, kale and broccoli go to flower and leave them if they aren't shading out other plants.

I let my oregano and strawberries go nuts in the garden and will cut back every so often.

I replaced many ornamental shrubs with Edible perennials, I figured if I'm gonna have to take care of a plant it might as well be an edible.

Problem grass areas in the front were replaced with gardens with perennial flowers and herbs, I also installed pavers and patios in these trouble areas.

I reduced more stress by adding an irrigation system to water nearly everything.

Every year I take a look at what stressed me out, what was too much work for the payoff and then I try to eliminate those things or at least tweak them.

My biggest stresser this year was the weather, I learned (actually too stubborn to follow my own gut) that I need to assume the worst when it comes to weather so next year everything will be started two weeks later and planted two weeks later, no exceptions.

Everything looks great in your garden but if it becomes too labor intensive, maybe it's time to reduce some stress, keep whatever gives you the most joy and slowly reduce what gives you the most mental/physical stress, whether productive or not!

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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Thanks @SQWIB — As I was reading your experiences and conclusions/solution, I was intrigued that many of your thought processe/progression have coincided with mine and how I have been evolving as a gardener. I tell ya — great minds and all that. :wink:

A glaring omission on my part is the ability to build and craft. Ah if only I was better at it. I don’t think I’m incapable, it’s just daunting, and as projects go, I seem to lack the engineering/mechanical mindset — anything that requires any kind of precision had better not be my responsibility. (I can’t sew either.)

Another obvious is energy levels. I fizzle out way before you do from what I’ve seen. :> But as far as stresses go — garden Is where I relax and mentally recharge, no matter how much I complain. :roll:
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Snapshots from my garden

— first broccoli — variegated tomatoes — “It’s alive, Jim” (more later)
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— lettuce harvest — gorgeous photo — peaches


—almost everybody has been escorted outside for the summer —
— orchids get special spot with babies, others are elsewhere not shown —
Image - peppers/tomatoes need to be planted -
— alpine strawberries in hanging baskets —
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

“Drowned Weed Bucket” was already smelling like silage yesterday. Image

- ETA -

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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

The week-long rain has completely flushed any semblance of nutrients from the potting mix the plant starts are growing in, and leached water that puddles in their drip trays are nearly clear now. The excessive moisture has also started the fungal cycle and some of the tomato plants are showing signs on their lowest leaves.

So I sprayed them all thoroughly with fine mist of straight worm tea that is draining from the vermicomposter, mixed with yogurt whey.

I really wanted to do this yesterday, but managed to get it done this morning, while pouring out/siphoning out the accumulated water from yesterday and last night... before the light drizzle turned into full pattering rain and, soaked to the skin and chilled to the bone, I had to retreat inside the house.

Even though much of the spray may be washed right off, this time, they will soak into the potting mix and stay inside the containers while they wait for me to drain them again. Also, the microbes will stick on by themselves if they can — not sticker agent necessary — AND what survives will do their best to grow and spread.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

KGP (Kitchen Garden Patio) SIP and Earthbox update:

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applestar wrote:I somehow didn’t post about these and didnt even write down in my garden diary or take photos — I must have been in a hurry and then got too busy — but I planted these around three days ago.

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...oh! I found it! I did make a visual record of sorts in the Numbers Garden Journal. According to this I planted them on 5/2.
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- cabbage, Brunswick
- cabbage, Cuor di Bue
- cabbage, Kalibos
- broccoli, Romanesco
- kale, Dazzling Blue
- kale, Red Chidori F1
- kale, Beira Tronchuda
- cilantro, Dynamo

- cauliflower, Veronica
- broccoli, Solstice
- lettuce, Rosemarry
- lettuce, Valmaine
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Got some tomatoes planted today - Yay! I’ll talk more about them later in the Tomato thread and Cross-breeding thread since these are all my crosses.

Elongated large cherry:
- Afternoon Rosé F4 with antho
- Molten Sky F4
- Ladyfingers F4 with antho
- Wild Rosa F4 with antho
Small cherry:
- Coyote Rosa Bébé F4
- Buttermints F4

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~ After a week of rain, the swale.paths were ankle deep in boot-trapping mud!

This just about completes the VG (Vegetable Garden) beds for now... just a few tweaks here and there, including the Korean Melons in the little VGB.

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Apple Guild bed is also done — planted the seedlings from Thai Kang Kob cross that developed pumpkin-like shape last year. I planted them mostly to the left for them to grow to the right. Hopefully, this way, they won’t compete too much with the little peach tree.

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Moving on to the Kitchen Garden, Kitchen Garden Patio, and Kitchen Garden Patio Side. The bottom-line concept for these beds that are on or just off the patio is to grow things that I could step out of the kitchen and use. So herbs and garnishes that completes a dish like something to add to an omelette or soup, sandwich and salad fixin’s like emergency slicers and cherry tomatoes.... though once they start coming in, it’s not too likely that there are none to be had in the kitchen. :wink:

A couple of cherry tomatoes were tucked into this corner:
- Coyote Rosa Bébé F4
- Buttermints F4
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Speaking of slicers — gotta get the big garden beds planted, too. Busy, busy!!
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

First strawberries — picked about a dozen :-()

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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

... trying to figure out where to plant them all ... :roll:

This is the bed in the backyard designated Sunflower & House (SF&H) because I planted it as a sunflower house with corn (&) the year after we decided the kids had grown too big to use the portable backyard pool/portable pool wasn’t deep enough. It used to have a crooked path through which they could walk through to the swingset, but when it became apparent that they weren’t “into it” I closed it off so there would be more planting space.

This year, I’m planting the Pink and Purple Mexican corn in the far side, and Japanese Striped Maize to the right/back.

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— I normally don’t plant corn here because it’s really too shady, but I want them to add biomass/roots to this bed this year. I’m not really expecting much from the PPM but it will be interesting to see how tall they can grow in this location. I planted only the best variegated Japanese Striped Maize, and they should look great as foil for the variegated tomatoes. I’m hoping this cooler location will help the tomato variegation to not get burned out by the heat. I don’t need productive fruiting from these as long as I can advance the generation.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

applestar wrote:Image
nice!!

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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Thanks! :D

...more random pics :wink:
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I LOVE our front lawn and adore my DH who lets me experiment like this to foster a diverse, poly-culture, drought tolerant, “Mixed lawn” ...defying the suburban neighborhood pressure to “keep up with the Joneses” :-()

The lyre -leaf sage patch is in full bloom and actually looks like a hummock or a sweep this year. DH will mow around the flowers, leaving blooming humps, but I will enjoy the loose and lovely wildflower meadow-look until he does. I didn’t see them earlier when it was chilly and densely overcast, but usually, the blossoms are a-buzz and a-flutter with pollinators and nectar lovers, including hummingbirds.

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- You can see the yarrow-and-clover patch of lawn next to where the Lyre-leaf sage takes over

Viewed from upstairs window — I’m so happy with the way the chartreuse ginkgo tree leaves pop in the middle of the sage. You can see the sage is still only a very small patch compared to the rest of the front yard.

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My mother-of-thyme lawn area which has *almost* reached the walkway from driveway to the front porch and is practically fully spread between the driveway and the Japanese Maples Island bed:

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- the thyme will be in full bloom soon
- DH was funny the other day when he said “You are ruining my mowing with this area.” “Why, what do you mean?” “These things are too short for the mower blades to cut.” “That’s the whole point, Silly!”
- It’s fantastic to walk on them — every Step wafts the sharp, clean thyme scent around you. I told my DD’s — “you know those commercials that say “fresh scent of —?” “That’s not fresh. THIS is FRESH!” :()

...I missed taking a photo when in their “full glory”, but this area under the weeping cherry is carpeted with violets that bloom at the same time as the weeping cherry. The violets have almost fully established within the dripline of the tree and are spreading up to the house/driveway in the shaded area.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

what a wonderful "lawn" ! You are inspiring as always. We have less and less lawn as I put in more veggie and flower beds, but I haven't done anything with what is left. It is mostly white clover, though.
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

My over-stuffed Rubbermaid and earthbox SIP’s on the Patio Kitchen Garden, with two views of the Rubbermaid. They are packed planted according to Earthbox’s planting chart. Hm. This was an experiment because by all rights, I would have thought TWO cabbages would be all that would fit in the Rubbermaid tub. :roll:
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- it’s possible the 3 cups of organic fertilizer that was added per instructions was enough to supply their needs, but the growing space is another matter — they Look like they are not stretching/spreading out the way they should.

VG.SIP and VGD and VGB Pallet-sided Raised Beds (PSRB’s). Who would have thought slugs REALLY like artichoke leaves, even more than green lettuce or cauliflower? I do think the artichoke in the constantly moist SIP is stressed out and not just from the slug attack. I did finally catch the big slug that have been turning it into lace doily.

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- peeking over the front edge to show the nasturtium and other seeds starting to sprout 8)


VGA raised bed, viewed from the VGB-PSRB side :
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

FINALLY! Tackling the Spiral Garden. Some of these (overgrown) tomatoes were planted — especially impossibly pot-bound ones ... others are buried in their pots for tentative placement review. Dwarfs are still on the table — not positioned here yet.

...It’s slow going, because I have to remove the weeds to find space between garlic plants and strawberry plants to plant them. (Also removing some of the Wild strawberries that are in the way). Needing to widen the rows and hill up with the rich swale/path soil. Earthworms everywhere. :()
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Spiral Garden is slowly taking shape — (use the orange OJ lid as place marker)

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{Outer SG EAST}
CHERRIES
- Sweet Aperitif
- NRAM (Not Raymondo’s Australian Mist VGB-PSRB 2017)
- Japanese Golden Pear
- Helsing Junction Blues
- Brown Multiflora grape cherry volunteer near the compost pile
- Molten Sky F4
- Ladyfingers F4
- Napa Rosé
- Wild Rosa F4

INDETERMINATES

{outer SG SOUTH}

<XTRA-TALL>
- Allons-y, Dr.X F4
- Wes
- Zena’s Gift
- (Goat Bag)
- Rebel Yell

{inner SG EAST}

<SAUCE/STUFFING>
- Canestrino della Garfagnana
- Gezahnte
- Ernie’s Plump

<BLACK/BROWN/PURPLE>
- Blackberry
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kayjay
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

I love the idea of the spiral garden. Makes a lot of sense in terms of maximizing space without having to reach. I'm already having that problem trying to play Twister by avoiding stepping on soil. :/

I love your lawn, too! If I had one, I'd do similar. There's no way I'd be golf-coursing it.
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My Garden, 2020

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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2018 Garden

Thank you! I came across the concept of Spiral Garden (and keyhole and mandala gardens) while exploring ideas promoted/utilized in permaculture... and adapted it until it all came together for me. I would say a good part of my paradigm also derives from Ruth Stout’s and Emilia Hazelip’s gardens (who I came across while studying concepts in Masanobu Fukuoka’s One Straw Revolution). I originally got the bits and pieces from many different sources, but I found a nice little summary about the shape here:


https://blog.mindresearch.org/math-in-t ... rface-area
Math in the Garden: Slopes and Shapes That Increase Surface Area
Just as students can learn that a circle maximizes area for a given perimeter, gardeners can also learn that more plants are possible with a curved shape, such as a spiral, circle or keyhole. Notice linear gardens, agriculture fields and orchards are typically arranged to allow easy access for machines. However, if mechanized management is not a requirement, circular spaces are far more efficient: One can stand in the center of the keyhole and water, harvest and monitor (pests, plant health, etc.) all from one spot in the center. It conserves energy, minimizes “wasted” pathways and maximizes planting area.
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