Godless in the garden


Godless in the garden

Discussing all aspect of gardening.

Location: Planet Earth
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Comment by kathy: ky on October 20, 2017 at 3:35pm
Thomas, I like to leave the fields tall because it does allow more animal and beneficial insects to live. It seems like everything is a trade off.
I saw an owl sitting in the backyard last night. It was huge. I imagine it was feasting on the voles,mice, moles and other things that are often distructive to the yard but also beneficial.

Birds: has anyone else tried the old trick of tying two aluminum pie pans together and attaching them to a stake in the garden to keep the birds away? As long as there's a breeze it works very well.
Comment by Joan Denoo on October 20, 2017 at 3:31pm

Thomas, thank you for your informative comment, especially describing your experience with wildlife and the field. 

We keep our field mowed, but only about twice a summer. The raised beds that Laura and Larry created for me have very rich compost that has been there two winters. Now, it is an unplanted, unplowed, unmowed set of boxes filled with voluntary weeds and flowers that the birds and wind bring in. I like the wildness of these boxes, even as I see countless moles holes. There are vole holes as well, I discovered, but I have yet to see one. 

Turkeys, a few rabbits, chickadees, blue jays, crows, and other wild birds seem to like the raised bed boxes with weeds going to seed. 

I don't think your comment was long at all. It is full of information and thoughts that I enjoy reading. 

Comment by Thomas Murray on October 20, 2017 at 2:52pm

Daniel ,

 I inspected my apple tree and there some buds left that haven't flowered yet. So hopefully these buds will hold until Spring 2018 comes around. Most of the petals are gone now and the branches are still pliable. Home Depot still have a few fruit trees at half price.There are about 6 ft tall. I am thinking about going to buy these fruit trees and plant them in my yard. When I see these plants are not watered or cared for properly I buy them up for reduced cost. You know like the animal rescuers or humane society so perhaps being a plant rescuer is a new vocation for me.

About vole, mole, and gopher infestations...

   When we first bought this home almost three years ago the well kept field did not have many holes. I assumed they were gopher or vole holes. The first Summer I kept the field mowed to about 5 inches. Hardly any wildlife came around, except the deer that traverse the stream every evening around 6 p.m. The second and third Summers I did not mow the field. During the two Summers there were more deer and they were venturing closer to the house, about 20 feet away from our back porch. This was also when we first saw wild turkeys with their broods strutting their stuff across our tall grass fields. Every once in a while we could spot something black/brown darting in and out of our field. I am assuming these are minks. There were also more colorful birds.So a week ago I decided to mow the field for reasons to keep the ticks in control and to rid fire fuel. WHOA! There are now many more holes than there were two Summers ago. So I am guessing that the tall grasses provided more food and shelter for the critters to expand their family and they are more freely traveled without the threat from hawks and owls.

  So... having tall grass and weeds means more voles that will feed the hawks, minks, owls and snakes but we suffer the multitudes of holes, ticks, and destruction of plants OR keep the grass short thus less wildlife. I do not want to use pest poison to kill the voles because other wildlife will eat the poisoned voles.

Sorry for my long rant.....

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 20, 2017 at 1:52pm

I don't think my outdoor faucets or copper line to the evaporative cooler were damaged by the surprise cold snap a couple of weeks ago.  I drained them in time.

When Joan asked me about draining my lines, I said they were all hoses, but forgot about the copper line, and that I had about 3 feet of metal pipes going to 3 valves.  

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 20, 2017 at 10:40am

Daniel & Joan, I'm here, just lost ambition I guess.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 20, 2017 at 10:18am

A week or so ago, one of my traps caught another mouse.  I need to get outside, go around the house, and find where they're getting in.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 20, 2017 at 10:17am

Daniel, about your deer, I have a hard time finding animals beautiful that eat all my hard work.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 20, 2017 at 10:15am

Daniel, are you OK with us going off-topic once in a while?

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

Spud, My main problem with taking up a woodworking hobby is that I would make stuff that isn't that good, or nobody wants, and I am working on de-cluttering the house. But, it might be something artistic.

Kathy, the weather here is maritime Pacific  NW.  Winters are usually much milder than other Northern states although it cant   get cold.  Usually one big snow and one big ice storm a year.  Winter is chilly and rains daily.  Spring is later, summer is cooler, dry, not humid, cool nights, and usually doesn't rain for 3 months.  I imagine the difference from Kentucky and here, is not as much as the difference between Kentucky and Georgia, or Kentucky and Minnesota.

Joan, I know the experience of moving a lot.  My parents did stay put for 50 years, so I have things from them.  That's a lovely piece and memory you have, the wall plaque with ceramic.

Expecting rain storms today.  I think I will enjoy that.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 20, 2017 at 9:14am

I've never had a lathe but used a couple once.  Don't know if I've mentioned this before, but I took a metalworking & woodworking class 50 years ago in California.   Made a non-sparking hammer with the metal lathe and with the wood lathe made reflectors for two large speaker housings I made.  

I put speakers pointing up so the sound bounced off the reflectors into all parts of the room.  I made the cabinet 6-sided, covered with cork board.  Beautiful if I do say so myself.  Sold them to my brother years ago and he's still using them.


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