Godless in the garden


Godless in the garden

Discussing all aspect of gardening.

Location: Planet Earth
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Comment by Joan Denoo on October 31, 2017 at 11:35pm

I m still having crying spells about leaving my home and splendid garden that I put 41 years of work into. The entire city lot had perfect growing soil and it took years and years to get it just right. I could dig potatoes with my bare hands, the Jerusalem artichoke came up with just a slight nudge. 

The ground I am on in the summertime north of Spokane at L&L's place is a huge mountain of glacial sand. No matter how much hummus I put on it, the water drains away as fast as I apply it. I can't do deep mulching with chips, straw, hay, or chop and drop because of the fire danger. I have several huge confined compost piles trying to get well-composted sand and horse and cow barn cleanings that will not blow around in the case of a forest fire. The challenges please me, even as my old body doesn't want to work as hard as I need to. 

The western larch turned bright yellow and will soon drop their needles. 

Greenhouse and western larch with their beautifully bright yellow autumn color. 

Comment by Patricia on October 31, 2017 at 5:52pm

Things sound pretty positive for you Joan.

Comment by Joan Denoo on October 31, 2017 at 5:33pm

Daniel, I think you are correct about being too far north for persimmons, yet, I would like to try. I still don't have the energy to do the basic gardening and hope that changes. 

Craig's wife is a physical therapist and I am looking forward to tapping her wisdom to see if I can't regain some energy. I still don't know when I go there. We expect snow this week and I know Larry will have to go south. He just can't take this cold weather. They spend winters in Phoenix. 

Craig has the bid for putting a stair/chair in for me. They have a long stairway to the room that I will be using. They also are converting a bathroom tub with a lower opening door. It is fascinating what can be done for the elderly and infirm. 

Comment by Joan Denoo on October 31, 2017 at 2:45pm

Spud, I have no experience with this, but my favorite homesteader puts a double layer of plastic, ideally with a space between. He used double plastic pipes for his tunnel frame and that kept the light freezes from harming his plants. I will look for the video where he shows how he does it. 

10 Steps For Growing Most of Your Food (In Less Than 10 Hours A Week)

I couldn't find the grow tunnel article from Justin Rhodes, however, here is some information from  Eliot Coleman

I realize you are not looking for grow tunnel information, however, the principle is the same for a single tree as for a row of spinach. 

"Because the low temperatures here in Maine are too harsh for overwintered onions to survive, we needed to grow them with protection from the weather. We decided to grow them in one of our unheated moveable greenhouse rotations."

"To be sure there would be sufficient winter protection, we put an inner layer of floating row cover supported by wire wickets inside the greenhouse."

"We started thinking about simpler, less-expensive protection than a greenhouse."

"We knew the wire wickets that supported our floating row covers wouldn’t hold up under winter snow, but we thought that sturdier low tunnels might work. When we looked for materials to construct the low tunnels, we realized that 10-foot lengths of half-inch electrical conduit would be ideal. A 10-foot length of conduit bent into a half-circle with the ends inserted in the soil covers two of our 30-inch-wide growing beds with a 1-foot path in between. What we came to call “quick hoops” were born."

Spud, as you can see, Coleman uses his imagination, experiments, and pays attention to the results. Just good old scientific method at work once again. 

https://tunnelgarden.com has kits you can buy and they look expensive to me. You should be able to go to your local hardware store and find the materials you need to make a double walled shelter for your tender trees. 

Let me know what you find and what you use. I will need that information for trees that I plan to plant next year. I very much want to try to grow persimmons, even this far north. 

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 31, 2017 at 1:58pm

I just thought of another thing I'm going to do.  That's put a couple of layers of chain-link fencing on the soil around the tree and put the water jugs on that.  If I put many of them directly on the ground, I think it would reduce the oxygen that gets in the ground.  It will also probably reduce the hiding places for bugs.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 31, 2017 at 1:46pm

Daniel, thanks for the OK to post off topic once in a while.

This morning, there was a hard freeze.  10 degrees F below freezing.  I checked on my Avocado and it was almost that cold inside its greenhouse.  I'm going to have to build another greenhouse over this one.

That tree is supposed to be good down to 30 deg F, but its leaves still looked good although the air was about 25.  I put 8 gallon jugs of water around it to try to moderate the temperatures and plan on putting more.  

I also put a temperature and humidity gauge by the tree so I can see the conditions in there without opening the plastic, which will sometimes change conditions before I can measure.  The greenhouse plastic is not clear, so I plan on cutting a window and taping a clear piece of plastic over it, enabling me to see inside without opening.

Comment by Joan Denoo on October 31, 2017 at 12:42am

I was unable to open your persimmon site, but I Googled "Persimmons in Armenia" and found lots of information. 

I will be leaving one of these days for Craig's home and won't have time to get and plant a persimmon here, however, you are an outstanding "persimmon proselytizer." If nothing else, I will get one from a store. 

I did find this site: 

Comment by Joan Denoo on October 29, 2017 at 9:46pm

Daniel, your Persimmon is so pretty, I would grow it for the color. 

Your orchard must be a beautiful sight in the spring, summer, autumn, and winter!

Comment by kathy: ky on October 29, 2017 at 7:59pm
Daniel, that fruit looks beautiful.

Thomas, sounds like deer manure was the cause of the odor. If that's it you have some wonderful fertilizer there. I'm curious how it will turn out in the spring. If it's not helpful after the winter passes it shouldn't be harmful.

The compost heap that I had sour smelled bad and didn't have any earthworms or other bugs working in it.
Comment by Thomas Murray on October 28, 2017 at 5:38pm

Kathy& Daniel,

  I wonder if the sour smell had something to do with deer poop. We have deer in our yard just about every day early mornings and evenings around 4 am and 5-6 p.m. The deer traverse to and from the lake along our stream and often stop in our yard to nibble on the sweet grass and drop poop. So when I rake up grass clippings I also rake in the deer poops. Our two small dogs go crazy in the deer poops as if it were perfume. The dogs stinks horribly! It takes a couple of shampoos and rinses to remove the stench.


Thats a pretty big hole you dug... big enough for a duck pond. You could get a kio pond going quite easily....


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