Godless in the garden


Godless in the garden

Welcome to gardeners, growers of veggies, fruits, flowers, and trees!  


Welcome  backyard hen enthusiasts, worm farmers, beekeepers & composters!

Location: Planet Earth
Members: 175
Latest Activity: 7 hours ago

Welcome to Eden!

If you like to dig in the dirt, plant & prune, grow food & flowers, or sit and watch as someone else does your landscaping, you'll find something here to discuss!

Selected topics, in sort of alphabetical order:
Aging.  Gardening with an older body.
bees.  insectary.  insectsbee gardening. Beneficial insects.  insects drive evolution

Compost.  herecontaminated compost.

Backyard Chickens here. here. here. here.

Edible yard.  here  urban farmfront yards.
Growing Fruits


Fragrance and Scenthere.
Fruit growing.  in a small space, by backyard orchard culture.
Frugal gardening.  labels.

Gardening for future generations.  also permaculture, trees, historic varieties, soil

Hegelkultur here, here, here

Heritage and historic varieties.   heresources

locally grown plants to prevent blight transmission here.

Moon Phase Widget here. Moon phase topic here.

PeppersHot peppers.

Permaculture MollisonFalk  Liu, Joan's IntroTransformation in 90 days, Perm Principles at work. Food forest, Holzer

Potatoes.  here.

Rooftop gardening.  here

Seed starting. starting spring crops.

Scientific Gardening.   The Informed Gardener.  The truth about garden remedies.

Soil and soil building - healthy soil microbes, mycelium, dirt is everything, soil analysissoil pH.


Tomatoes.  Myths and truths

Trees.  Tree tunnels.  Ancient tree planting. Plant commemorative trees

Sentient Biped's Garden Blog. Happy to add a different feed if there are suggestions.

Comment Wall


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Comment by Daniel W on November 2, 2014 at 9:13am

Barbara, thanks for the ongoing lesson on Hegelkultur.  If not for the rainy area I live in, I might try that.  With climate change, it may still be needed here some day.

Joan, we are in the midst of some great rain and rain storms.  I love it.  You would like sitting in my sunroom, in a big rainstorm, surrounded by rain but dry and warm.

Comment by Barbara Livingston on November 2, 2014 at 9:00am

Gosh, Daniel and Randall you sure make blackberry bushes sound badl  Luckily the fruit of such not-so-nich bushes makes it all worthwhile.  

Comment by Barbara Livingston on November 2, 2014 at 8:58am

I spent a few hours at a local community garden yesterday learning the proper way to create a Hugelkultur bed.  Theirs were actually attractive and had several things growing in them, and I was able to plant the broccoli you see growing in the one on the left.  (Perfect pic of me, eh?) :)

I definitely need to tear apart the one I have started in my own garden and find some larger logs for the base, then add additional organics to it. I imagine its going to be messy to do, but I really want to get it right.  I should note that many Hugelkutur beds are rounded on top, however, the young man in charge of this garden said he prefers to make them flat on top so when he waters the soil doesn't wash away. 

Comment by Daniel W on November 2, 2014 at 8:42am

I love how active folks are  hear, and sharing experiences and insights like neighbors of family.  It's sonderful.

Randall - blackberries are the bane of Pacific NW gardening.  They grow like kudzu.  They are so thorny, the gardener comes out of trimming them looking like a wounded warrior.  We have patches probably 12 feet high, dozens of feet long and across.  I don't mind, the flowers give food for bees and the berry are delicious.  But they are a big problem.

Barbara, hour gardening efforts are inspiring.  I know if people can garden in deserts, that you will be successful in Texas too. 

Joan, you always inspire me.  If I do live longer, I want my place to be like yours. 

My property has an odd layout, with a road that crosses across a corner.  On the other side is a small triangle that is ours, but looks like it belongs to a neighbor.  On that triangle is a massive maple.  The neighbor mows and manages that little space, because they think of it as theirs, but I try to get ahead of them to get leaves.  If I am late and they get them, they will burn them.

Saturday I raked up the first batches of leaves.  So pleased, several big wheelbarrows full.  The tree has at least an equal amount still on the branches.  This year, I piled them on top of the grass clipping mulch, around trees and shrubs.  Makes for a great mulch, and kills the weed seedlings that were sprouting in the grass mulch.  Felt a great sense of accomplishment.  The trees and shrubs had robust growth this year, and the place is starting to look long-established. 

I have also been cleaning up the perennial beds in front of the house.  Did a 3-way switch between a small yellow daylily, a robust red one, and a dwarf buddleia, each of which was misplaced - I take the blame for that.  There are occasional daylily flowers even now.  They are somewhat deep in the flower beds, hoping deer won't find them.

Sometimes after work, I troll the big-box/grocery store in a daze, and come home with plants from the TLC sale table or bins.  That's where those daylilies originated, and with TLC they flourished.  This week it was more packages of Narcissus/Daffodils, and Alliums.  I was not going to add more, but there we are.  I plant them in clusters of 3 to 5 or 7 so they look established.  Use a shovel instead of a bulb planter, so it is quick and easy.

Come February, the "noses" will start to stick up above the mulch.  I enjoy inspecting those almost more than the actual flowers.  Much needed in the late gloomy winter.  I love driving past yards were someone has planted lots of flower bulbs and they have taken over.  This yard is starting to look like that too.

Comment by Randall Smith on November 2, 2014 at 7:29am

Barbara, my berry patches are pretty wild. I don't stake or guide them in any way. Blackberries should produce every year, although some years are better than others, this one being very poor. Their vines are extremely thorny. I've bled many times.                           Raspberries, on the other hand, esp. red, have less hurtful thorns. I don't rotate them. They make for a brambly looking wildlife home. Good luck!

Comment by Barbara Livingston on November 1, 2014 at 10:26am

Joan, no luck finding worms at the equine center as the bedding they use is actually sawdust from cedar and mesquite trees and their disposal system is so efficient it never sits for more than a couple days. I'm told all their waste is taken to the local organic compost/soil business. Talk about a massive recycling operation! Onward to other sources ... 

Randall, I thought I wanted either raspberry or blackberry bushes and after reading your post I went in search of info on growing them here in So Tx.  http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/fruit-nut/files/2010/10/blackber...

Since your bushes produce more than you consume I'm guessing you have many bushes, correct? Do you mow your bushes? Rotate them? Do yours have thorns?  Obviously your growing conditions are radically different than mine. Since they are biennal I realize I won't have blackberries for two years, but worth a try. I think I would like to plant them in my front yard so maybe others could enjoy them too. (And part of continuing effort to reduce grass)

I remember as a child on my family farm in upstate NY picking blackberries with my dad using a milk pail.  The bushes were all in a wooded area with dappled sunlight. Precious memories of days gone by. :)

Comment by Randall Smith on November 1, 2014 at 7:33am

Joan, I have both black and red raspberries, the reds producing twice a year--way more than I can consume. Hopefully, next year I'll have blackberries. They're pretty fickle.

I usually pick all my tomatoes, green ones included, before the first frost or freeze. But this was a bad year for tomatoes (too wet), so I hardly have any to ripen in the basement. I often have enough to last 'till Christmas. I have plenty of dehydrated tomatoes from 2013, however.

Comment by Joan Denoo on October 31, 2014 at 1:38pm

k.h. ky having a grandson who is gay offers you a great opportunity to demonstrate how to love, care for, be with a person who is too often shunned in our society. If he learns to love himself as he is he will be able to confront challenges that come his way. 

To be different than expected can put a heavy burden on him. You can offer him the kind of support that will encourage him and affirm him as he is. 

Daniel and the others in our group who are gay have great insights into the experience of growing up. They can describe how much it hurts to be rejected by family and friends. They can also provide ideas of how to provide positive and healthy support. That can give you the determination to be there for your grandson. 

My best wishes for you as you confront the challenges with him. 

Comment by Joan Denoo on October 31, 2014 at 1:29pm

Barbara, my dear neighbor, Roger, got me started worm farming. I started as you describe from your worm farm made of plastic boxes with holes drilled. I loved it and it worked so well, I decided to go for the expensive system. It isn't at all necessary. You will do just fine with the system as described. 

There is no smell if you manage it property. There has to be a balance between food scraps and newspaper and that other stuff, I can't remember its name, and moisture and air.

The adv says you can put the bins in the living room without having bad odors from it. I have a good place in my pantry that works well all winter and I don't have to trudge through the snow to get to the compost bins. 

I didn't know earthworms are solitary creatures. I love learning new things. Let me know how your hunt for worms turns out. There is always something new to learn in gardening. 

Comment by Barbara Livingston on October 31, 2014 at 1:17pm

Joan, like so many other things in life everyone has their own opinion and it appears opinions on how to grow worms are not the exception. I decided to try different ways and I put out a large piece of cardboard on the bare dirt to see if any come up to it, and tomorrow I'm going to equine center to dig in horse manure for some. Also going to be working in community garden tomorrow and of course looking for worms.  My tubs are ready and I just need the worms. 

Cenek, I took your advice about not altering  soil when planting natives. I took some cuttings of my Mexican Sage, salvia leucantha, bushes and since they rooted nicely I went ahead and planted in newly tilled bed without adding any amendments.  If they grow I'm going to do same with all my native plants - definitely a more economical way to garden.   I will add worm castings in the Spring - once my worms start producing that is. 

Weatherwise, cool weather finally arrived late last night with a wonderful drenching rain and this morning a delicious 63 degrees. Daniel if only there was a way you could send some of your rain down here to San Antonio! 


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