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: 181
Latest Activity: 10 hours 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

Homestead Automation: Automating the Chickshaw Part 1

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Joan Denoo on Wednesday. 1 Reply

Hope in the Middle of Big Ag

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Randall Smith Aug 3. 1 Reply

Comment Wall


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Comment by Don on November 10, 2014 at 7:32am

Some farmers' markets are no better that supermarkets, I guess.  Here in Vermont (Vermont has more farmers' markets per capita than any other state), ours are almost all excellent, although many are expensive, discouraging a lot of low-income shoppers.  Several enterprising local farms also sell their produce (including meats) right at the farm, day in day out.  Chandler Pond Farm, just three miles from me, is terrific.

As for pruning fruit trees (apple, cherry, and pear especially) and highbush blueberries, it's definitely recommended for the trees' vigor, the size and health of the fruit, and even for appearance.  The definitive resource on the subject is Lewis Hill's PRUNING SIMPLIFIED.  He was a wonderful, wise, and pioneering gardener whose books remain highly regarded. 

Comment by Randall Smith on November 10, 2014 at 7:02am

I haven't read anything about not pruning fruit trees, but I'm a strong believer that it's not necessary, unless you're doing it commercially. For one thing, pruned trees look horrible. And there's a plentiful supply of fruit w/o lopping off limbs. Besides, it's hard work. What do you do with the limbs? Never again, for me.

As for growing your own potatoes vs. market, it's not the cost. It's the satisfaction and joy of self reliance--and gardening! Taste matters, too.

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 9, 2014 at 11:38am

Daniel, I agree with your reasons to grow spuds.  If I had the room, I'd grow hundreds of pounds a year.  Even with my very limited space, I plan on growing some next year.

Don, Farmers' Markets sound like a good deal in most places, but I've not been impressed with the one in my town.  The prices seem to be about regular store prices, and the taste is no better.

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 9, 2014 at 11:31am

Barbara, thanks for the link to the root pruning video.  I had never heard of it before, but after watching several of them, it sounds like  a much better way.  I'm going to try it.

Comment by Don on November 9, 2014 at 11:10am

I used to grow potatoes here in northern Vermont (fingerlings and red potatoes) for the pleasure of it and because I like the look of the plants, even though keeping after the potato beetles can be a real chore.  But lately I prefer to use the garden space for other things.  The farmers' markets offer all kinds of varieties, and the local commercial growers sell white potatoes at $2.99 for 10 pounds.  Can't beat that. 

Comment by Barbara Livingston on November 9, 2014 at 11:05am

Daniel, Many different ways to do things ....  

Yep, I agree and the reason for my post awhile ago about being overwhelmed with information and ideas.  

Like your statement about if it grows it grows and if it dies, so be it. All we can do is use good growing techniques and then wait.

I'm inclined to think my final plan with include several fruit trees - regular and dwarf - and they will be pruned down so I can readily pick the fruit from them. :)  Your orchard is truly a fine example of what can be done. I can only imagine what it will be like once all your trees are producing. You'll be able to have a roadside stand to recoup some of your expenses!


Comment by Daniel W on November 9, 2014 at 10:43am

potatoes for $1 so why grow your own?


Valid question - if it costs the gardener more to grow them than to buy at Winco or Aldi or Walmart, why grow your own?

my thoughts-

-if your perpetuate your own seed potatoes, it becomes free as far as money is concerned

-there is a connection to earth and soil, especially locally, when you grow your own.  I can't describe that.  I feel it.

-maintaining the tradition, means the process is less mysterious.  It's really easy, and minimal effort, but somehow coming from the grocery store it seems like expertise is needed.

-your own potatoes, I hope, are not laden with herbicides and pesticides.

-continue multi strains, especially locally adapted and individualistic for flavor, novelty, local productivity.

-genetic diversity.  Industrialized growing means dependence on a very small # of strains, unwise and unsafe and dependent on corporate ag.

- I thought my home grown potatoes were bursting with flavor.  One becomes so accustomed to store potatoes, tasting like cardboard, we really don't realize that potatoes are intended to be delicious.

Those are my thoughts added to the article.  I intend to continue growing potatoes next year.

Comment by Daniel W on November 9, 2014 at 9:00am

Barbara, thanks for the info.  I have not read about Masanobu Fukuoka's methods.  Will have to look into that. 

Just about the direct opposite, the "Backyard Orchard Culture" method allows for very close placement of fruit trees, keeping them to small size for maximum diversity in a small space.  Of course, that is promoted by a fruit tree nursery, and would sell more trees.  But it has a point. 

Many different ways to do things.

Comment by Barbara Livingston on November 9, 2014 at 8:35am

Daniel, have you read anything about Masanobu Fukuoka's method of growing fruit trees - no pruning?  He was the mentor of Larry Korn the lecturer on permaculture I'm currently listening to. 

Comment by Randall Smith on November 9, 2014 at 7:40am

Wow, busy site here! I had to go back 3 "pages" worth of comments.

Daniel, just from experience, I'd say persimmons are not self-pollinating. Although to prove it, I'd have to cut down my 4 "males". They have never had "babies"! And I have a lone pear tree that is prolific in fruit production. I like your orchard set up. Fingers crossed you have a good year in '15.

Barbara, Chris, and Joan: I enjoy reading your back and forth comments! Love to read what others are doing. Inspirational.


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