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: 181
Latest Activity: 5 hours ago

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!

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Comment by kathy: ky on October 17, 2017 at 12:17am
Lovely tree Thomas. My personal favorite is the dead looking hydrangea I bought for .50 at Lowes. I the massive one that I have a photo posted of.
Comment by kathy: ky on October 17, 2017 at 12:12am
Interesting article Spud. I like to read gardening articles that are brought up here.

Randy, Daniel, thanks for the information on the voles. And they are what I have been puzzled about for many years. We have a very large population of moles and sometimes on their flat tunnels I would find a friend small holes. I learned a LOT about moles (from reading on how to eliminate them) until I decided moles do more good than harm.
I see a large number of different types of holes in the yard. A couple of weeks ago I saw a couple of sandy spots that I hadn't noticed. I knew they weren't ants so I kept watching them when I was working outdoors and found a wasp of some kind. Digging a little angled dirt mound and going inside. Probably to lay larvae because when it came out it covered the little opening.
Does anyone have any idea what that was?
Thanks all
Comment by Joan Denoo on October 16, 2017 at 11:16pm

Daniel, that is an interesting find. A little browsing and I found this: 

"Spanish conquerors exploring the Pacific Northwest in the 1600s came across many Native peoples using the bark of R. purshiana as a laxative. They gave it the name "Sacred Bark" (cáscara sagrada) in honor of its effectiveness. By 1877 the U.S. pharmaceutical company Parke-Davis was producing cascara preparations, and soon afterwards cascara products were being exported overseas to European markets. The explosion of the cascara industry caused great damage to native cascara populations during the 1900s, as a result of overharvesting.[16]

"In 1999, cascara made up more than 20% of the national laxative market in the U.S., with an estimated value of $400 million. The bark itself was worth approximately $100 million. Cascara was found in more drug preparations than any other natural product in North America, and is believed to be the most widely used cathartic in the world.[17]"

~ 16. Johnson, Rebecca & Foster, Steve (2008). National Geographic Desk Reference to Nature's Medicine. National Geographic Books. p. 77. ISBN 9781426202933.

~ 17. Small, Ernest; Caitling, Paul M.; National Research Council Canada (1999). Canadian Medicinal Crops. NRC Research Press. p. 130. ISBN 9780660175348."

It seems you have a valuable crop on your hands. Who would have thought you would make your fortune with a cathartic

Comment by Daniel W on October 16, 2017 at 10:20pm

Thomas, thanks for the report and the interesting question.  Spud answered it well!  Last summer, I did have a small apple tree bloom in late summer, and it bloomed again this spring, and bore a few apples.  So all is not lost, I think.

Spud, thanks for the research and article.  That was news to me, made for great reading.

Comment by Thomas Murray on October 16, 2017 at 3:48pm


Thanks for the article and it makes sense. However, is there a way to correct the problem now? If the buds are blooming now, then there won't be any buds left to bloom this coming Spring... or hopefully the tree will self correct itself , however, the bloom won't appear until two Springs latter.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 16, 2017 at 2:55pm
Comment by Thomas Murray on October 16, 2017 at 2:29pm

  Hi guys,

  A month ago I bought what appears to be a dying apple tree at Home Depot. So since it was at half price I bought it for $20.00? I can't remember exactly.  So I used an earth digger to dig out a hole and afterwards dumped a whole bag of fertilizer into the hole and plopped the apple tree on top of the fertilizer. I did not mix the fertilizer with the dirt. Then covered the rest of the hole with plain dirt and said a few magic words.      

  Two weeks later, some buds appeared and then some days later this,


   I am not sure what to make of this apple tree blooming in the mid-early Fall. But I am delighted the tree survived  In the background are the plum and pear trees.

  Wadda you guys think this strange behavior of my apple tree blooming in the Fall? The apple tree is Red Delicious.


Comment by Daniel W on October 16, 2017 at 10:51am

It looks like the row of scrub trees, that I have been cleaning up, is Cascara.  I thought they were Hawthornes, but now I think not.  Cascara is interesting because the bark is used as a laxative, for hundreds (thousands?) of years, to this day.

My row of trees.   One more leaner to remove if I'm in the mood for that.

Comment by Daniel W on October 16, 2017 at 10:32am

Kathy, mine vole holes are typical for what these look like.  We have lots of moles too, but they make huge mole hills.  This year one of my fig trees died.  It was about 1 1/2 inch diameter trunk, 5 feet tall.  I had a hardware cloth screen around the base.  Moles had gotten under the screen, and chewed through the entire trunk.  It looked like a beaver chopped it down!  I didn't like that fig much, anyway.  I'm not certain, but I think voles are what eat all of my lily bulbs.  Lilies grow fine in containers, but in the ground they disappear.

Randy, after you finish with possoms, you can come here and catch some deer :-)  I saw the deer family a couple of properties over yesterday - there are five of them!  So beautiful, but so destructive.  How can five deer survive in this neighborhood?  I suppose, entirely by eating people's gardens?

I dug up the bed that had sweet corn this summer, turned over the soil.  Ordered some Russian or Polish garlic from Territorial Seeds, to plant.  I want to plant the garlic there in a few days.  Last winter I piled a lot of leaves on that bed and turned them over this Spring.  The soil is very soft now.  Yesterday I pruned lower branches from several orchard trees.  The goal is to be able to remove fencing around at least some, so I can mow easily under them using riding mower next year.  A lot less effort. 

At the moment, everything hurts.

Patricia, I've seen some bananas in yards here.  I think they leave them in the ground, too.  Cannas survive some years, but mostly not.  Gladiolas survive most years.  I dug up a bunch of gladiolas yesterday.  I will dry the bulbs and store them in the garage to plant in a different location next spring.

Joan, I enjoy hearing the frogs croaking and finding an occasional frog in some moist spot.  Also  get a kick out of garter snakes and praying mantises.  Saw a mantis yesterday.

Spud, I hope your pipes didn't freeze.  Your efforts remind me, I need to get some cement blocks to build a better cover over the well head.  If I remember.

Comment by Randall Smith on October 16, 2017 at 8:15am

Kathy, you might simply google voles. I usually find only holes, but in my sweet potatoes, I had mounds.

Caught my 3rd possum. I know mothers have large litters, so I may trap another 9 or so!


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