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applestar
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Haphazard Gardening... :)

I'm continuing my polyculture gardening experiments this year. It's my "lazy" gardening technique that has been working out well. No neat rows and clean weeded beds for me. nutz:

I've been sowing early spring cold weather seeds and planting onion sets. I have my map of succession planting based on 4 basic groups and 4 additional subgroups that I meticulously worked out last fall.

So this year's tomato bed has garlic that were planted last fall along the path, and onions sets that I planted in the last couple of weeks along the outer edges. I sowed various root veggies -- carrots, parsnips, rutabaga, radishes as well as leafy greens like lettuce and Swiss chard earlier, and this week, sowed more carrots, beets, and spinach seeds. I'm not marking them so I've no idea where they went. As a result, I happily discovered some parsnip seeds that have just germinated with their tiny root tip radicles just starting to grow (I gently patted them back in place).

Last year's hot pepper bed has been planted with broccoli transplants. In the process, I found sprouting Fava beans -- I just planted the broccoli where Fava beans weren't. :wink: With some luck and good timing, this bed will later hold melons. I also sowed radish seeds. Some of them will be allowed to bolt and flower to attract beneficial insects that hopefully will help protect the melon vines. And the outer edge has sentinels of garlic here as well.

Last year's sauce tomato bed was planted with the largest Romanesco broccoli and cauliflower, and onion transplants, with additional beet and radish seeds. I'm hoping to grow bush beans, possibly pinkeyes, and watermelon here later on.

Last year's main tomato bed has been path-edged with garlic and being the best protected and warmest bed, the Fava's have already popped out of the ground as well as the Telephone pole peas and a variety of greens including Red Russian Kale and mustards. I'm still not sure if I sowed enough peas, especially after reading the crowded peas thread. But last year, I had the same trepidation and sowed another row right next to the row I sowed earlier, and they ALL came up. :roll: I plan on growing corn here later on along with squash or pumpkins and beans, of course. :wink:

I planted 5 sunchokes in the front yard.... in a circle on a mound where I had tried to grow Ilex opaca last year, but it died. I plan to surround the mound with landscaping wall blocks (from Home Depot :wink:) and fill with mix of sand and loam. It's far enough inside out property line that I won't have to worry about the neighbors having a conniption about an invasion (or unwanted overspray of chemicals, etc from their landscaping efforts), and I'll have the chance to put a stop to it if the 'chokes head in their direction.

I had to walk around the property twice before settling on where to put the rest of the sunchoke tubers:

Along the back fence, I have two piles of English ivy compost pile. My previous next door neighbor thought it was great to grow English ivy along his back fence. Of course they promptly escaped into the wooded area behind his property, and they are now doing their best to move into ours. So every spring, I yank them up and pile them up in a separate pile from my garden compost piles.

I decided to combine the two English ivy piles into one since they had reduced to less than 1/2 their original size. And WOW the wonderful loam underneath was a delight! I shoveled good 3 to 4 inches of the stuff out for other uses, then loosened up the soil a bit and planted the sunchokes. It's meant to be a holding area. It's not an ideal spot, somewhat shady. I'm hoping there are enough factors to limit their reputed enthusiastic impulse to spread and concur. If they manage to hold against the English Ivy, all the better. In any case, since this bed will be thoroughly disturbed for harvesting, I can pull up the ivy to my hearts content. :twisted:

Since I had all this lovely inviting bare soil, I made a mixture of seeds -- breadseed poppy, cleome, radish, carrots, parsnips, onion, and I don't remember what else -- and sowed them on the surface. I don't know what will happen, but my main intent was to have enough *desirable* seeds as well as weed seeds here rather than letting just the weeds grow.

Well, I could go on, but I already seem to have written a novel. :roll: :() :>
Last edited by applestar on Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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rainbowgardener
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Sounds wonderful! I would dearly love to walk around your garden some day!

How many years did the English ivy sit there to reduce to half and produce some actual loam?

I threw some pulled ivy into my regular compost pile once. A year later I pulled it back out, still green and intact and trashed it.
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DeborahL
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I HATE IVY ! ALL IVY ! :x
God must think highly of animals - He created them before creating us !

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rainbowgardener
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I hate ivy too, have spent way too many days of my life pulling the stuff.

But I had to laugh at the way your post with the signature line read:

I HATE IVY ! ALL IVY !
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Please spay and neuter !


Like please spay and neuter your ivy? :) Would if I could!!
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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applestar
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:shock: :lol: lmfao ...I think...<gasp>... It may be better to treat ivy with hormone or chemo-therapy rather than invasive cellular micro-surgery unless you are able to effect a radical IVY-ectomy. I opted to use the medi-evil amputation, however. :() :lol:

...AAANYway! :wink: My English ivy "compost piles" are not compost piles in the strict sense of the words. Better to describe them as "brush piles" -- i.e. they are dry piles not watered and are left to dry out during the summer drought. In fact the whole point is to keep the pulled out vines from making contact with the ground/moisture and having opportunity to set down roots. While the leaves are still alive or whole, the piles are dense enough to smother any growth. I have tendrils escaping from beneath, but those I simply yank out and pile on top. I wasn't sure if this would work -- I posted and asked about it a couple of years back, but nobody seemed to know the answer, so I went ahead and experiemented -- so they've been there that long.

thanrose
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My ivy that I pull down from the trees and out of the wooded area goes onto a concrete basketball pad my father put down 30 years ago. The hoop and pole are long gone, the pad, formed in 4' blocks, is uneven from settling and tree roots, so there is some drainage and some potential for things to take root there. So far so good with baking the ivy to dead there before composting. If I'm out with pruners, I sometimes clip a few of the longer vines to speed up their decay.

I was leery of putting them directly on my compost, or on my actual brush pile.

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soil
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your place sounds like my place. good stuff.
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

WinglessAngel
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Evil Plants!

LOL Some ivy i like, but along with ivy there is poison ivy and sumac....being as I am severly allergic to posion sumac, had 2 sever bouts of it already since last summer....I am being watched like a hawk by my fiance now whenever i go outside to garden or mow LOL...I don't blame him, he's a retired doctor and I was almost hospitalized for it the first time....horrible stuff...totally another story :( but he was able to kill most of it as someone else put in the medievil manner LOL and I just wish there was a way to rid the world of these evil plants!

DeborahL
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Rainbow ! You're a crack up ! :lol:
God must think highly of animals - He created them before creating us !

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gixxerific
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Haphazard Gardening!! Is there any other way?????????????? :lol: :lol: :wink:

tedln
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Applestar,

As my wife and I moved around the country in my professional life, I always looked for the perfect house to buy where I could do what I call "cottage" gardening. I think your "haphazard" gardening is the same thing or at least very similar. To me it simply means planting a little of this in one place and a little of something else in another location and finally achieving some kind of natural balance between the environment, the landscape, the plants, and your personal desires and tastes.

I never found the perfect house for my cottage garden. I think in the end, the type of garden I wanted could only be grown around a five hundred year old cottage, with lots of stone, moss, and different elevations in England. I will just keep it as a dream and envy you as you enjoy yours.

Ted
I simply enjoy gardening!

WinglessAngel
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lol maybe that's what I'm doing then....i have fast producers mixed in with my long ones so i can utilize/maximize space and output....but i have 6 areas where there will be plants, 2 of which will have potted plants, but the other 4 are in ground garden areas lol....so i guess that means I'm a haphazard gardener too! kinda like that idea lol

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