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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

applestar wrote:
Do you also have fungus gnats?
20190323_090838.jpg

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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Went outside and looked around — I need to cut down three big limbs, probably a few smaller branches with pole pruning saw. I won’t do it today — weird heat spike in the 70’s making it too hot layering just short sleeved and long sleeved t-shirts... I want to wear heavier, sleeved jacket and a hat for protection.

Making some mental plans for re-building raised beds and hopefully building a new bed for the Apple Guild bed — along the drip line of the possibly failing Enterprise apple tree.

I almost went out to thoroughly clean up the side garden — Spiral Garden, Sunflower House, and Haybale Row beds and their annex beds.... but remembered just in time that I have to take DD2 to her sewing class today, so that has to wait. Just as well, that would have been hot work, too, though might have been pleasant enough in short sleeves with no bugs to bother me.


...something has eaten my three Quick Start mini-Cabbage seedlings from fence-protected SIP ... vole or mice is my guess. Slugs would have also eaten the lettuce — last seeds that survived, though none of the other older plants are nibbled. I really think somebody doesn’t want me to continue with my mini-Cabbage/crucifer experiment —failed last fall, failed this spring except for ONE Gonzales left .... hmmm, where did I plant the Red Express seedlings?

ETA — I think in preparation BEFORE the Cabbage whites show up, I will put up the netting over the SIP’s and secure the bottom (tied with string or with bungee). This should hopefully also keep out the nibbling rodent.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I was driving around yesterday running errands and noticed that the forsythias in the area are just starting to bloom - a phenological sign for planting potatoes. :D

This year, I missed the opportunity to order seed potatoes, but I did have sprouted potatoes in the pantry a week to 2 weeks ago that I cut the eyes out of and put in a container with barely moistened coir and peat moss. They are starting to grow roots now. — If I don’t come across good seed potatoes within the next week, I’ll probably plant these. I need to get more bales of ProMix and the farmer’s market where I get them from usually has had seed potatoes in the past.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

For the last couple of years, I’ve been making do with the last of my 7 ft bamboo poles — reusing them, and supplementing with other materials for weakened state of one’s that have seen several years in all elements of the year.

But I finally, I gave in and bought a bulk bundle of 100 again since there was a free shipping offer. Yay! ...I’m envisioning all kinds of uses including some garden structures that I have been doodling on my mental drawing board. :D
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Had a bunch of things I wanted to do outside today, but settled for moving and re-building the primary compost bin/pile.

As expected, the top 2/3 of the full bin was mostly not broken down yet — and during the winter months, the input tends to lean heavily towards paper waste =Browns. By moving the top 1/2 of these with the bin to the middle of the Spiral Garden, I can balance the ratio with the grass and weeds as I prep the beds.

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Once I got down to the clumps of half-composted materials, I found compost worms everywhere, very active and busy. Larger still-whole pieces and sticks and bones were added to the compost bin. Half-finished materials along with the worms went into the tumbler to finish composting, and I have a pile of finished compost that need to be screened that can be used to prep some beds.

I left the lid off and used the 1/2 barrel to loosely cover since it’s supposed to rain tomorrow and the pile needs to be watered.


...when I first approached the compost bins, a huge rabbit hounded away along the outside of the fenced garden area towards the gate. It looks like I will have to be extra vigilant and make sure all the garden fences are bunny-proofed.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I had to get this done before it started to rain. I should have been able to finish yesterday, but I’m still weak and flabby after winter-long slump. As the gardening season progresses, I should get fitter — muscle strength and endurance.

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I’m not very particular about how to screen the compost. Today’s compost screen was rigged from the green wire fence layered with 1” chicken wire fence. Bigger pieces tumbled down without going through, into the compost tumbler lid, and were dumped in the tumbler for finishing. I didn’t take a good photo of the result, but I consider this sufficient for using in beds and very large containers when they are repotted or to go outside for the season.

I use an old cat litter sifting tray to screen compost for use in smaller containers and uppotting after true leaves. (The tray is from a litter box set I bought for a previous cat. The design concept sounded good, but in practice, it was a complete disaster — cat litter dust wafting everywhere, mushy stuff stuck in the grid — blecch. It wasn’t in use for very long. :roll: ) I would use the riddle with smaller screen for very small seedlings.

While shifting through the compost, I also harvested a cottage cheese container of smaller worms to start a vermicomposter and put in some of the container plants.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Did some basic clean up in the VG (Vegetable Garden) area. Added screened compost to some of these beds.

- The PSRB’s (Pallet Sided Raised Beds) along the vinyl picket fence need a complete overhaul to refill to the top.
- Just need to fluff and add lime_fertilizer to the SIP
- I’m thinking of turning the large rectangular bed (combo VGC and VGD) into a “sorta” keyhole bed by placing an elliptical worm/compost bin in the middle — the wire border fence is NOT this final version. Melons in the bed this season.
- Would like to re-build the VGA bed (arched PVC) and bring up the small VGB bed beyond it to be same level as VGA, but may jut give up and plant — should top up VGA if possible.

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... see the yellow peach starting to bloom? :D
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Had noticed some new mosquito larvae in some of the water reservoir buckets and the upper “pond” last week, so I have been treating with the last of the Mosquito Bits — I’ve been needing to use much more than when these are fresh, and sprinkled some more yesterday.

Today, was glad to note dead mosquito larvae suspended in those waters, but there was a persistent few live ones in the upper “pond” so I went around treating with the liquid - Mosquito Lift - that came in a couple of days ago to finish them off. DIE! You pesky buggers, DIE!!! :twisted:
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I was thinking this morning, as I noted near complete absence of fungus gnats, that I like the idea of the biological control turning the fungus gnat maggots into fertilizer in the potting mix :twisted: —- what do you think? Mostly nitrogen? :P
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Yesterday, noticed that the BEST growing seedling out of all of these (a Pinocchio Orange) has first set of tiny floral truss starting to grow. They were started on Feb. 7, according to the post.

Mon Feb 11, 2019
applestar wrote:I’m not ready to call my garden started, but the 2/7 trial Aztek and Pinocchio Orange began to sprout since yesterday. They being “temporary” and “trial” I put their little (pint berry container inside a clamshell) on a footstool in front of the space heater, and whaddayaknow? O_o

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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Yesterday, was gifted with a paper grocery bag full of 2.35” square 4-cell packs. No more excuses for uppotting all the little seedlings and putting them in trays. :> (I gave away some individually labeled lettuce seedlings, and one of the Pinocchio Orange and kale plants in return :D )
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

applestar wrote:Had noticed some new mosquito larvae in some of the water reservoir buckets and the upper “pond” last week, so I have been treating with the last of the Mosquito Bits — I’ve been needing to use much more than when these are fresh, and sprinkled some more yesterday.

Today, was glad to note dead mosquito larvae suspended in those waters, but there was a persistent few live ones in the upper “pond” so I went around treating with the liquid - Mosquito Lift - that came in a couple of days ago to finish them off. DIE! You pesky buggers, DIE!!! :twisted:
Get some mosquito fish, I have then in my Koi Pond.

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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I would if they were a bit more readily available, and I were to come across them in the pond section of garden centers and such.

As it is, I’m a busy (lazy :wink: ) woman, and I end up getting feeder goldfish from the pet store when I’m there for cat litter. They are cheap and hardy, so I can bury the mysteriously or marauder killed dead ones without fussing, while they often survive in 1/2” of water remaining in the buckets even laying on their side and upper gill exposed ....

I don’t put them in the main frog pond since something in there already keeps the mosquitoes under control and the fish might/will eat the tadpoles and eggs.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Kitchen Garden Patio (KGP) SIP1

Nov 07, 2018
applestar wrote:These were planted with expectation to fall harvest — they might be good for baby greens right now. They will last longer if I rig some kind of protection —
Image
...progress...
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...everything except lettuce seedling in the little pot have survived the winter and are coming back alive.... :D


...BUT all things considered, the lettuce started in last week of January and first week of February are doing better. And since they grew well in the winter garage V8 Nursery, I think I will stick to this schedule. I think I started the Dazzling Blue Kale in late December? I may need to try that with broccoli and cauliflower....

Image

...I should point out the onion bottoms in the middle-left photo of orange earthbox.
- - Top right corner one was planted couple of weeks ago and is growing greens, and the bottom right corner one was planted a couple of days ago and is just starting to grow :D
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Do you remember these peas? I’ve been desperate to plant them — should/could have planted them at least a week ago, possibly 2 weeks ago.... :roll:

Image

But I think the idea is sound. The key point of this year’s experiment was to use these cartons in this orientation for deeper root space to avoid stunting the seedlings, and be able to minimize root disturbance when planting as well as easy handling so the easily bent upper stems are not damaged.

They hadn’t started to grow out of the bottom of the carton yet, and slid out after I cut the corners for one panel down to open. I do think I shouldn’t have sowed so densely in each of these 1/2 gallon rice milk cartons, but I had ran out of time to sow the pre-germinated seeds if you remember.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

These are growing fast :D

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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I didn’t take a picture but it seems like most of the carrots I sowed in the various garden beds have germinated.

I used “pre-germinate naked in a container, then sow in liquid suspension” method I came across on youtube. They used cornstarch “gravy” and I did too for the first and 2nd batch, but got lazy and just used a lot of water for later batches. I’m not sure if the cornstarch gravy method did separate them more. But considering I fell behind and let the first to germinate seeds completely sprout with spread seedleaves in the container (I used disposable condiment cups), I was pleased to see the line of carrot seedlings popping up.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Started corn — where to be planted

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- Latte F1 — SFH #1(w) 1/2(n)

- Applestar’s #Sweet# Medley for 2019 — SFH #2 (full)

- Luther Hill — SFH #3(e) 1/2(n)

- pink and purple Mexican — VGB.psrb

Applestar’s #Sweet# Medley for 2019 includes the wrinkled kernels from this cob.
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...as well as dimpled F1 kernels from intentionally crossed Cob of Japanese Striped Maize x #Sweet# Medley for 2017

Image


Started carrots

- Napoli
- minicore
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I sometimes miss the very short harvesting window for these Ostrich Fern fiddles. This year, I caught them in time :D
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Last night when I rinsed/drained them, I noticed that Latte and Luther Hill had already started to germinate with 1/8” root radicle, and some of my Applestar’s #Sweet# Medley as well. I might be in trouble since I’m busy today. :?


I was originally thinking I might try directly sowing the pre-germinated seeds this year, since I ended up not being able to plant some of the started corn plants until it was too late last year, but I may have to sow them in cups if they are too far along today and can’t wait until tomorrow.


I have to remind myself why it has been more successful to plant started plants — the top-of-the-list reason is I can make sure well grown plants are growing, spaced exactly apart in the limited space.....
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Managed to get all three varieties in the ground. I had started way too many seeds so I sowed seeds in all of the spaces (no succession) — 3 rows in each mounded wide row at approximately 8” in-row spacing. I still have extra seeds that are germinating so I will sow them in containers as backup, I think.

(The pictured Latte F1 and not pictured Luther Hill seeds look very similar - you’re not missing anything. 8)
My Medley on the right — so pretty. :wink: )
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Some of the germinated corn seeds being planted —
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...with all the weeds from cleared/prepped beds added, plus the 2 inches of rain during which I left the lid open to thoroughly water, the compost bin started chugging along, up to 80°F in ambient air temp of 60°F...
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Harvested some lettuces and greens, as well as the first of the purple passion asparagus, and some more Ostrich fern fiddles since DD2 who tasted them for the first time this year liked them so much. :D

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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Harvesting big outer leaves from this Patio.SIP lettuces almost every day. Last couple of days of high heat was making me concerned that they will bolt, but Temps are going back down now with at least 3 overnights in the upper 40’s coming. But I have to remember that I actually meant for this box to finish up when it’s time to plant tomatoes and peppers.... :o
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...there are various other stage lettuces growing, including these in VGA (Vegetable Garden - A).

...Right half of the 6 foot long VGB.PSRB (VG-B Pallet-sided Raised Bed) in the background is where I decided to grow Pink and Purple Mexican corn this year. Can you see the pre-germinated dark pink seeds? 12 of them in 2ft x 3ft space is way too close, but I’m hoping they will be stunted shorter than the totally unmanageable 12-15 feet with first ear at 8-9 feet (and hopefully still produce ears as long as I feed them well). This location is a low point in the boundary with the neighbor and will benefit from pooling rain and irrigation water as well as fertilizer runoff.
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Remaining pre-germinated corn seeds were sown in the half gallon rice milk cartons as back-up (actually the ones I used for peas re-closed with duct tape :wink: ). The yellow post-it labeled one is a bit interesting — seeds in this were tiny, runty, shriveled/shrunken kernels that came from intentionally hand-pollinated ear of Applestar’s #Sweet# Medley x Japanese Striped Maize. I soaked and pre-germinated them separately, hoping these are viable seeds carrying the synergistic sweet genes, and I was prepared for them to be just duds — runty immature kernels. But to my delight, they germinated! :-()
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I didn’t get the chance to check on the garden yesterday, but the milk cartons of corn had started to poke up on the patio table. :D We just had a bit of a storm pass through — about 1/4” rain according to official reports. More rain coming today. That should help — corn loves extra moisture.

Hopefully that will get them fully sprouted before we’re hit with the drop in temperature. I believe it’s cold soil before germinating that can spoil the corn seeds — once sprouted they can take a bit of cold.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

applestar wrote:I didn’t get the chance to check on the garden yesterday, but the milk cartons of corn had started to poke up on the patio table. :D We just had a bit of a storm pass through — about 1/4” rain according to official reports. More rain coming today. That should help — corn loves extra moisture.

Hopefully that will get them fully sprouted before we’re hit with the drop in temperature. I believe it’s cold soil before germinating that can spoil the corn seeds — once sprouted they can take a bit of cold.
Get them rain barrels going!

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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I have 2 working ...3rd one will replace an existing broken one with a slow leak — I was waiting to empty that one but ... :roll: ... it’s filled up again.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

The garden looked like this last evening —
Image
...but I went out today, and the corn are starting to sprout in ALL the beds :-()

Couldn’t walk in the soft soil of the garden, so filled the blue half-barrel with pulled grass stalks. Hopefully I got to them in time so they will wilt/dry without developing seeds, and I will be able to use them as hay mulch.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

My seedlings are not doing very well this year due to unidentified malady or problem — possibly related to potting mix... but there are probably enough to plant and possibly more than enough despite being only a percentage of what I’d started out.

These variegated Shimofuri seedlings are making me happy at any rate :D
Image
(my own tomato cross that I’m trying to stabilize - saladette-sized pink pointed plum/heart fruits, hopefully on short, sprawling determinate vines suitable for large hanging basket, windowbox, and patio container growing.)
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Almost all of the corn are up :D

Image

...those are the overwintered mini cabbages bolting and blooming under the insect tunnel. :|


[spoilers ... well not really ... does anyone remember that composting manual called “Let it Rot”?]

A sight only gardeners could find rewarding, I suppose — this is what I saw when I dug up the middle of my compost pile to add more kitchen scraps :mrgreen:

Image
Last edited by applestar on Fri May 03, 2019 10:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Found/Added link to ‘Let It Rot’
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Image

This is a picture from 5/8 when I saw the Indigo Bunting, but two days ago, AFTER pulling all those poison ivy as I mentioned in the moan/groan thread, I went to look out from the upstairs window and there was a BIG RABBIT sitting in the corn! I could see that 6-7 of the corn were laying on the ground like the blasted thing had nipped them from the base and decided they weren’t good to eat. Well, lemme try this one, nope... well maybe that one. :evil:

My DD was willing to go out and chase it off. She saw it go under our big boundary fence to the neighbor’s side yard. ugh! I had her stuff some old bamboo poles in the gap for temporary measure, and have been nervously keeping an eye on the garden ever since. (I had to rest yesterday)

I’ll see what I can do to secure that entry point, but I really need to thoroughly make sure that the entire side garden fencing is tight since young bunnies can get in from smaller gaps than adults. I may also temporarily put up a rabbit fence around the corn until they get bigger.... I do have backup plants in rice milk cartons that are ready/need to be planted to fill the gaps.

Yesterday, while waiting for DD at her piano lesson, I reviewed and updated my planting plans for the major garden beds.

I’m eager to get planting since the temperatures are going up this week, and I have tomato plants that are hardened and ready, as well as some other stuff that are “dying” to be planted already... strawberries need to be rescued from all the weeds trying to take over ... next phase of pond project needs major excavation and contour work before the frogs and the snake become too active ... I want to get started on the hypertufa projects ... start actualizing the greenhouse and stardome projects ... and somewhere in there, I have to squeeze in cleaning up the front mailbox and porch-side beds.... :roll:
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

applestar wrote:.... there was a BIG RABBIT sitting in the corn! ......
My DD was willing to go out and chase it off. She saw it go under our big boundary fence to the neighbor’s side yard. ugh!
I was at the bulk section in a garden/feed store. A lady beside me was bagging a lot of seed, of ... I don't member what. I remarked on it and she said she throws it over into the neighboring yard so the rabbits stay on that side of the fence.
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Planted the nagaimo/jinenjo that grew from H-mart purchase in VGD.PSRB (Vegetable Garden D, Pallet-sided Raised Bed):

Image
- Bottom-left is VGB-PSRB side, with volunteer Gobo/burdock in the foreground, just weeded open space reserved for C.moschata squash, and Pink and Purple Mexican corn growing.

— Trying the pipe method:
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https://www.ja-shizuoka.or.jp/topia/agri ... /0903.html

- Also planted the greens in the front here — mostly the remaining kale and onions — from the Garage V8 Winter Garden...
- and planted the started C.pepo and C.maxima squashes. Some of them should be Godiva hulless, maybe Rondo de Nice squash/zuke....



- View of VGC and VGA, and close-up view of VGA from the other side:
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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Starting to harvest some peas, strawberries, and cherries. Lettuce are starting to bolt in the heat. Expecting to harvest most of them within the week.

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PEAS —
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* Top Left and Center - Sugar Magnolia
* Bottom Left - Emerald Archer
* Top Right - Sugar Sprint
* Bottom Right - Iona Petit Pois
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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Playing catch-up now — beginning to plant started cukes, melons, squash, tomatoes.... Will be planting more started melons where the window is warming the soil.

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- Harvested chickweed that was covering the upper 2/3 of this VG.SIP. Most will be dried to be used for making skin salve with violet later on.
- Thinned/test Harvested baby carrots from here and other beds
- Starting to harvest Super Sugar Snaps from the SFH bed remesh panel trellis

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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

I have been unable to get around to taking care of my espalier fruit trees again. They are going to need major re-do.

The cherry trees, intended to become “FAN” style has grown too tall and had sparse fruits WAY up in the 10-12 ft tall upright branches this year.

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I wasn’t up to getting the ladder out, and was going to let the birds have them, but then tried, and found out the cherry branches are supple enough to be bend way down without breaking.

...I wonder if it’s too late to cut these limbs? Since I can bend them, maybe I should just tie them down to near horizontal? Maybe 10-15°?

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- Purple Sugar Magnolia snap peas — they are not as sweet and tender as Super Sugar Snaps — I learned AFTER starting to grow them this spring that these are not as sweet as a similar variety called Magnolia Blossom so I will try that one next year. The extra long podded Emerald Archer Shell peas are very sweet. None of these peas are making it into the pot — they, along with baby carrots, are grouped with the berries and cherries and are being treated like garden fresh snacks by the DD’s. :D
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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

This year, I’m trying several approaches with the fruit trees.

- I’m trying to bag the table grapes to see if that will help with the fruit rot they suffered last year. I read that grapes self-fertilize (like tomatoes and peppers) so bagging them early, while in flower or just after petal-fall will help minimize fungal infection as well as deter attention from insect/bird/animal pests. I’m using waxed paper bags for these.

- The bagged ones were not sprayed, though spraying with fungicide is said to improve results (I did just this morning find my copper fungicide so I may spray-and-bag the remaining fruit trusses)

- It’s hard to see in the photo, but unbagged ones were sprayed with Surround for the time being.

- For apples, there is an overwhelming recommendation to just use plastic zip bags with corners cut off. I’ve sprayed the unbagged ones with Surround this morning. I might still try the nylon booties (apparently they have better results if soaked first with Surround)

- I found out that the zip bags won’t fit over peaches with their shorter stems. For now, I’ve sprayed them with Surround, but may go back to protecting them with plastic sandwich and berry clamshells since chipmunks and squirrels go after them when they are close to ripening. (I may also switch up to clamshells for the apples to protect them from animal marauders later.)

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- While I had the sprayer loaded, I’ve started spraying Surround on my tomato, pepper and eggplant seedlings as well as cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels Sprouts which are attracting unwanted attention from the Cabbage whites and cabbage moths. I need to get the powder form of Bt since I can’t stand the smell of the liquid. I also need to *find* my bolt of tulle so I can cover them up in a tent.
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- Although I did add a small amount of sticker, Surround tended to bead and roll off of the crucifer leaves. I have to decide if I want to/can use more sticker when spraying them. Surround has a way of drying into eye-blinding WHITE... and peach fuzz tomatoes, etc. look more than adequately covered.... maybe spray the waxy plants on a separate day so as not to confuse the concentration of sticker.....
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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

Finally got the biggest of the tomatoes planted in HaybaleRow (Prep: scuffle hoed, scattered Tomato-tone, Dolomitic lime, and Epsom salts, then forked and raked... approx. 1/4-1/2 cup TT in bottom of each planting hole)

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{From far/NE end}

Cows tit (2)

(fence panel on T-posts)

Homer Fike’s Yellow Oxheart (2)

{back/north}
Prudens Black (1) PL lost label

{front/south}
PaddyMC’s Steelhead (PL?)

(…Tunnel…)

{back/north}
Dwf Chocolate Lightning
Pennheart (kgolden’13) (2)

{front/south}
Totem f1
Yellow Dwarf x Sungold F3 (CKinNC’15?)
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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

4 ft x 4 ft x 12”H VGA (Vegetable Garden [raised bed] A) volunteer tomatoes are growing like crazy. I really need to cull/lift out most of these and only keep about 8 at most....

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Earliest of them have started to bloom. There are several variegated seedlings and a couple of dark antho ones, though it’s hard to tell now with them covered with Surround... and there is even what appears to be a micro dwarf (bottom right photo). In the bottom right of the same photo, there is a volunteer peach/nectarine seedling :D
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applestar
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Re: Applestar’s 2019 Garden

HBR (HaybaleRow)

- Planted the runty cauliflower and broccoli seedlings under the HBR insect tunnel (borax and tomato-tone)
- Will plant a row of tomatoes in front of them, plus the corn may supply some shade once they grow up some more

...also planted the 2KC Dwarf Chocolate Lightning next to the other one to share the cage.

SFH (Sunflower House)

- weeded and fertilized the three tiny corn patches (approx 15-18 plants @) — tomato-tone/iron-tone
- still need to hill — some of the corn are starting to lean over

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SG (Spiral Garden)

...back pain issues is keeping me from weeding this area properly. The strawberries are struggling though managing to produce here and there under the weeds. ‘Winning” precious open spaces to plant cucurbits...

- cleared one arc and fertilized — thinking of actually using black landscape “cloth” on the mounded “row” to warm the soil for planting melons here. The fence trellises are from last year’s tomatoes, but if some of the vines manage to climb up, then will use slings to support the fruits.
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