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: 180
Latest Activity: 45 minutes 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!

Discussion Forum


Started by Dominic Florio. Last reply by Joan Denoo 11 hours ago. 16 Replies

Permaculture thinking and skills for youth

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Joan Denoo Aug 24. 3 Replies

Comment Wall


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Comment by Daniel W on November 7, 2015 at 9:32am

Chris, it's confusing.  Or at least, I am confused.  The European Hawthorne Crataegus monogyna is considered an invasive species that crowds out other trees and replaces indigenous species.  The trees in my thicket have weak trunks,  Many have fallen over and there is a lot of dead wood. The branches break off easily, and the trees grow together in a thicket that you cant enter to remove the Himalayan blackberries.  The blackberies are also invasive, grow up to 5 meters high full of thorns, and crowd out everything else.   The berries are delicious.  Both have lots of flowers that the honeybees and native bees like, so they do have a role.

Where I am confused is what I thought was European Hawthorne might actually be the native Douglas Hawthorne Crataegus douglasii  .  I am often wrong about things.

Either way, I'm leaving the healthy, sturdy trees, but removing the broken off branches, fallen over trees, weak trees, and lowest branches that are too crowded.  I'm leaving many of them in place, if they look healthy.   We have a wood burning stove, so the removed trees will be used for heating. 

They are not huge trees.  Trunks as big around as my arm. 

Comment by Plinius on November 7, 2015 at 8:58am

What's wrong with hawthorn, Daniel? It could be a beautiful border of your ravine.

Comment by Randall Smith on November 7, 2015 at 7:33am

Sounds like a lot of garden clean-up going on. I'm on the bandwagon, too. I stasrted to hack down raspberry canes, but then read it shouldn't be done 'til late winter, early spring. Oops.

Time to mow down the asparagus, remove tomato cages, and level out the potato and squash mounds. I'll leave broc. and Br. sprouts for another month or so. Kale and collards, too. If it's a mild winter, they may survive well into the new year.

Daniel, I'm enjoying my persimmons. Wish you were here!

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 6, 2015 at 11:50pm

Daniel, Thanks for the list of apples you are "partial to". Your list adds to my "Seek, Taste, and Find ones I like" file. 

Comment by Daniel W on November 6, 2015 at 10:12pm
Joan, I have not tried goats. Sounds inteteresting. I dont mind doing it - Im outside, puttering, breathing the fresh air. There is no hurry. The tree limbs get cut for firewood. I run over the cut brambles with the lawnmower and collect them for compost. the brambles are listed by the state as noxious weeds, but they are so prevalent they dont even remove them from the roadside. Grass roots will hold the soil better - its bare under the berries and hawthorns, nothing else grows in the thickets.

If those apples look and taste like Granny Smith, then they must be what they are. It's a rather unique apple. Im more partial to Jonagold, Braeburn, Honeycrisp for mainstrsm apples, and some disease resistant hybrids for gardening.
Comment by Joan Denoo on November 6, 2015 at 7:52pm

Daniel, I don't know what kind of apple tree Laura and Larry planted and they do not have the tag. The only apples that appeared looked and tasted like Granny Smith apples. 

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 6, 2015 at 4:01pm

It is about 1:30 PM and I just came in from the greenhouse where my oldest great-grandson, 16 year old Jacob, and my youngest great-grandson, 7 year old Noah looked for new vegetables. We found three green beans about the size of a long eyelash, and a couple more zucchini growing into vegetables. We sampled leaves of cabbage, celery, radishes, lettuces, onions, beets. The boys liked the different flavors and seem enthusiastic about fresh salads. We eat leaves as fast as they grow, leaving little energy for the root crops upon which to grow. 

Randy, will sweet potatoes grow in straw so that you can dig thm by hand? Also do you grow them in mounds? Sweet potatoes haven't done well for me in the past and I suspect it is the cold nights. I used to grow them successfully in Texas; that was more than 40 years ago and I can't remember if I grew them in straw or if I mounded them. I grow white potatoes, I don't have to dig them. 

Spud, do you successfully grow sweet potatoes? I am glad to learn you are making a van computer friendly. I like your plan for mulching some potatoes in the ground. Keep us posted on how it works for you. 

Daniel, have you tried goats in clearing the brambles? Is your county noxious weed czar willing to work with you on making the ravine and creek wetlands into a more friendly and usable zone? My cousin had problems with his wetlands along the Priest River and had to abandon a plan to make it more migratory bird friendly. He lives right on the migratory route and have flocks of geese and other fowl every spring and autumn. Even the Sandpoint bird club liked his plans. He planned to stabilize the quiet water ponds that occur along the river. 

county noxious weed czar 

Comment by Daniel W on November 6, 2015 at 2:56pm
Joan, your greenhouse in an inspiration. Your reports really get me thinking...

Spud, you did a lot better than I did with melons. I started seeds but never got the plants into the ground.

Randy, Im glad you got some sweet potatoes. I tried a couple years ago. Maybe I should try next year.

Im not doing much in my garden at the moment. We have about 1/4 acre of blackberry bramble mixed with European hawthorne, abutting a ravine and creek wetland on one side of our property. I started clearing some of it, mostly with a pruning shears and limb bow saw. I can do about 100 square feet at a time. Once cleared, I want to plant some more desirable trees, and grass mixed with clover so it is mowable and hold the soil in place. The local county noxious weed czar gAve me some grief about the area, but mostly I want to be a responsible steward of the land.

I am almost done covering next year's corn/squash/other stuff garden with a thick layer of mowings. My hope is it will decompose by spring in our wet weather, killing sod and weeds and leaving soft soil in its place. I spead cardboard from boxes and spread the mowings on top.

Randy you will be happy to know I planted another American persimmon tree. This one is supposedly parthenocarpic, not needing male pollen to make fruit. It comes from a collection in Indiana. I really want to eat some of my own persimmons and pawpaws in my lifetime.
Comment by Idaho Spud on November 6, 2015 at 1:50pm

Thanks Randy.  I don't get to enjoy reading you guys comments on a daily basis because I'm getting to the library only once or twice a week now for 2 or 3 hours each time. 

I haven't dug my sweet spuds yet.  I imagine I'll slice into some also, and have to eat them right away.  They're growing on a berm, so I should be able to dig on both sides of them first, and reduce the damaged ones.  I'm also thinking of leaving some in the ground and putting a large amount of mulch on top.  Then dig them up when I need them.

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 6, 2015 at 1:42pm

Sounds like your greenhouse is producing wonderful results Joan. 

I'm going to start plants in my cold frame very early next spring, so I can plant them as soon as the ground is warm enough. 

I think I will let one watermelon plant grow in there all spring, summer, and fall if need be.  Then when we get cold weather in the middle of summer, I can close the lid and keep it toasty. 

I was planning on putting some cold-weather-crops in there this fall, but so far, I've been too busy making my van computer friendly, so I can access the internet at the library.


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