Godless in the garden


Godless in the garden

Discussing all aspect of gardening.

Location: Planet Earth
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Comment by Daniel W on February 7, 2017 at 10:22am

A historic experiment, attempting to explain who plants lift water from roots into tops, sometimes hundreds of feet.  The key appeared to be capillary action.  I still don't understand it.  Some have such force that pruning leafless stems causes dripping for days.  Grapes and figs do that.

Comment by Daniel W on February 7, 2017 at 10:20am

Joan, this is the part of year when Spring seems so much needed, but nature has its own pace.  Be careful on that ice!  No fractures, please.

Spud, I eat the skin too.  It's one reason I grow my own, since potatoes are too cheap to grow them for economic reasons.  I like that their skin was touched only by my own soil.  I do wash thoroughly, but who knows what they absorb.  I got some seed potatoes from Home Depot for red skin potatoes, and some Yukon Gold, but still awaiting whomever might have them for russsets.  Too early to start them, but the time is coming soon to get the garden bed ready.  I want to turn over the leaf-mulched soil and give it a chance to decompose before planting.

Today looks tolerable.  Will I be out clearing blackberry thickets again?  Will the be the end of that patch?  Getting close.  There are also a few fallen Douglas hawthorn trees in that patch to remove for cutting into wood-stove sized logs.

Comment by Joan Denoo on February 5, 2017 at 1:34am

We have had a slow rising and falling around the freeze temperature. Today, another snow storm and we expect another foot, followed by rain. Miserable weather; the snow blower has been going much of the day with my great-grandsons doing the honors. I haven't heard the sounds of snow mobiles; too busy doing chores, I suspect. 

I hoped to walk down to the chicken coop with some kitchen scraps this afternoon; Laura warned against it since the road is pure ice with a layer of fresh snow over the top. 

Comment by Idaho Spud on February 4, 2017 at 4:35pm

I love potatoes, but for several years I've reduced the amount I eat because the low carb people had me worried about them.  Recently however I've been eating more because I've read several articles saying they're good for you.  For one thing, they have a good amount of fiber, even without the skin.  And I eat the skin also.

Comment by Idaho Spud on February 4, 2017 at 4:30pm

The temperature here was a low of 40°F last night and 50°F for a high today.  That's about 15°F higher than normal.  The forecast is for temperatures almost that warm for the next 5 days.  

It's a little breezy, so the ice & snow has been melting.

I've not yet did any garden work, but I did get outside & got some exercise, because I had to go to the garage to get some screws.  I found the door solidly shut with ice, so had to spend an hour chopping ice.  Also shoveled a path through the snow to get there.

Comment by kathy: ky on February 4, 2017 at 11:05am
The weather here prevents any gardening efforts yet. It's to wet and cold to uncover the flowers. I did uncover a small bed of daffodils during a warm spell last week. But we are just getting below freezing temps, 15° last night, so the daffodils will probably die back for now.
Comment by Daniel W on February 4, 2017 at 10:32am

My onion seedlings are pretty spindly.  We'll see how they do in the long run.  If they don't make it, there are still onion sets.  The echinacea - purple cone flower - seedlings that I started last fall are looking fairly good.  I started those in the fall to see if I can get flowers in 2017.  Also rudbeckia - black eyed susan - although those seem to get aphids that my neem does not cure.

Randy, I eat a potato every day, sometimes two.  Hash brown for breakfast, potato salad, and tried making scalloped potatoes that turned out OK but might either change the recipe or not make again.

It looks like today might not be too rainy, so I better get out there and do some outside work.

Comment by Randall Smith on February 4, 2017 at 7:15am

I'm lucky to have a "fruit cellar" in my old farm house basement. It is brick lined and has its own door. It goes under the house porch. I store my homemade wine, potatoes, onions, and carrots there. They say not to store fruit, esp. apples with root crops, so that becomes problematic.

I have so many potatoes, I can't eat them fast enough. Besides, they're not particularly good for you (me). They also sprout right about this time of year. I have to remove sprouts before they take over the cellar!

Daniel, the pantry sounds like a plan. Good luck.

Comment by Idaho Spud on February 3, 2017 at 8:56am

Daniel, I like the idea of a pantry.  I could make one here in the basement fairly easily, if I ever get my other projects done.

You reminded me of the potato storage room my dad made in our house across town.  We dug under our house and made several more rooms, including the potato storage room.  He made a very thick door of wood to insulate it from the other rooms so they could be kept warm and the potato room cool.

Every year we filled it by digging potatoes from the ends of the rows that farmers missed with their machines, that is those that would let us.  I don't know how my dad had the courage to ask them, as he was also shy.  I suppose feeding his family was a good motivator. 

Comment by Daniel W on February 3, 2017 at 8:46am

Next indoor project for me is a walk-in pantry.  The house has an odd layout, with a bedroom adjacent to the kitchen, just off the mudroom.  Not so involved as the others, just pain and put in laminate floor to replace grungy carpeting.  The tie to gardening is, we'll keep the heat off, and it's a place for storing some garden produce like onions, potatoes, squash.  I'm not going to rush it.

Today's weather looks worse.   Maybe I won't go out and cut blackberries today.  If it gets better, who knows.


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