Godless in the garden


Godless in the garden

Welcome to gardeners, growers of veggies, fruits, flowers, and trees, backyard hen enthusiasts, worm farmers, & composters!

Location: Planet Earth
Members: 179
Latest Activity: yesterday

Welcome to Eden!

If you like to dig in the dirt, grow flowers, putter around the yard, dig in the kitchen garden, raise backyard hens, or just like daydreaming about the garden, this is the place.

Many topics have been discussed in the archive.  Revive a topic by adding your 2¢ or start a new topic.

Everyone likes photos of the garden, so if you like to share photos of your prize dahlia, your favorite hen, or your first tomato, go right ahead!

Comment Wall


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Comment by Randall Smith on June 29, 2014 at 7:21am

Interesting connections to me: Gardens Alive is based in Indiana, and I live 15 miles from Battleground IN, home of Wolf Park, featured on PBS, etc. (and named after a major fight between the forces of Wm. H. Harrison and Tecumseh),

Spud, I like you idea of covering the watermelon mounds. I just spent an hour weeding around mine--mostly nasty crabgrass.

Comment by Idaho Spud on June 29, 2014 at 6:47am

Thanks Joan.  I just did the best I knew how to encourage my melons.  I never thought of it as art, although, after the fact, I did think it made an interesting pattern.

Comment by Joan Denoo on June 28, 2014 at 10:38pm

Spud, your melon patch is beautiful! A real work or art! It looks like it should be included in an art show that some communities have. You are so clever and inventive. You have ideas that make great sense! Oh my goodness, I wish Dr. Kalin, my old Hort. prof.,  were alive so I could share this masterpiece with him. 

Comment by Joan Denoo on June 28, 2014 at 10:29pm

I have been using Gardens Alive for many years and find it does the job it claims to do. If you don't want to use this product, find the ingredient that does the job and see if you can find it locally or through another source. In this case, the ingredient is Bt, a naturally occurring bacterium for insect control. I especially like it because it doesn't harm birds, worms, bees, and ladybugs when used as directed. 

I use ladybugs and lacewings for insect control, especially aphids and red spider mites and I have a worm farm. So I don't want to harm them. 

I hope this works for you. 

Green Step II™ Caterpillar Control

"Controls worms and caterpillars on fruits, vegetables, ornamentals and shade trees."

"Gardens Alive!® has been offering Bt, a naturally occurring bacterium for insect control, since 1984. Recommended for Imported Cabbageworm and Cabbage Looper, Green Step must be eaten to be effective. After ingesting the insecticide, worms and caterpillars immediately stop feeding, though they may otherwise appear to be unaffected for several days. Best results are obtained by treatments when worms are actively feeding on treated, exposed foliage. 

  • Kills worms and caterpillar-stage insects, but has no effect on birds, earthworms or beneficial insects, such as honeybees and ladybugs, when used as directed.
  • Worms and caterpillars eat treated foliage, then stop damaging plants.
  • Acceptable for use on edible plants up to the day of harvest.
Apply Green Step when worms or caterpillars are first noticed, then repeat every 5-7 days while active. Apply more frequently for heavy infestations. 

This item ships at the proper planting time for your region in both spring and fall. 

If the current shipping season is closed, your order will ship at the proper planting time in the next season. 
Comment by Daniel W on June 28, 2014 at 3:57pm

Spud, I like bumblebees too.  

When I bought the 2 acres in Battleground, bee forage became a big issue for me.  Each year I add more bee forage plants.  I've bought a few pounds of white clover seeds, and whenever i clean up molehills, I sprinkle clover seed on the disturbed soil.  That, combined with natural spread, has made what I think is a beautiful lawn, not pure green carpet but filled with clover flowers.

I also try new bee forage plants each year.  They really love onion-relatives, like Alliums, and Chinese chives, and shallots.  Last year I did not eat the shallots we grew, because the bees loved the flowers so much.  I replanted all of them to let them bloom.

I also planted a lot of borage seed, and a plant called "bee friend".  The bumblebees are on those constantly.  They also love agastache.  The butterfly bushes I planted  - Buddleia - get foraged by bumblelees, but not honeybees.

Comment by Idaho Spud on June 28, 2014 at 3:42pm

Thanks Daniel.

Comment by Idaho Spud on June 28, 2014 at 3:41pm

Randall, after I said sorry, I noticed your melons are doing great this year.  With all the flowers in your area, I imagine the bees will do a good job.  

I still don't know where the bees and bumbles come from here in the city, with mostly grass everywhere, but they do come.  

I don't know why but I'm especially fond of the bumble bees.

Comment by Daniel W on June 28, 2014 at 12:53pm

Spud, I really like your melon hills.  They are like a work of art.  Please keep us posted on your progress.

I imagine the black fabric does give beneficial warming, plus the fact they are in hills.  Very creative.

Comment by Idaho Spud on June 28, 2014 at 12:41pm

Here's the same melons showing the hills I planted them on:

Comment by Idaho Spud on June 28, 2014 at 12:37pm

Joan, that article had some good ideas.  

The 5 new soaker hoses I bought last year, all came with those little plastic pressure regulators in them, but I removed them because I was doing a lot of watering from rain barrels with a pump that doesn't put-out much pressure, so I wanted as little resistance to the water flow as possible.

It took hours to water that way, so this year I will only use the pump for rain water.  If the dryness continues, I may not get much.

Last year, I filled the barrels with city water and let them sit several days until the chlorine evaporated.  I though my plants might appreciate de-chlorinated water.

However, I've since read that the chlorine is eliminated in the top couple of inches of soil, so the plants aren't affected.  That should save me a lot of unnecessary work.

I still may use the de-chlorinated water for a week or two until the watermelon soil is warm.  I sit the barrels on the south side of the house and the sun heats the water nicely.

Two or 3 people have said my watermelons were probably picked too late last year, because the hollow places inside are what happens when harvested too late.  That would also explain the watery taste.  This year, I'll start trying them earlier.

Here's a birds-eye view of 4 of my watermelon and one muskmelon ready to be watered:


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