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: 179
Latest Activity: 14 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

Comment Wall


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Comment by Daniel Wachenheim on November 25, 2015 at 8:55am
Randy, I think I was liking the idea of persimmons more than actual experience. The unripe Asian ones leave something to be desired. But ripe ones - holy moly they are good. I read American ones have a better, more complex flavor, just smaller. Some things we just have to grow ourselves, and persimmons are included in that.

I think of persimmons as the ultimate American fruit - native, one of the largest pre -European fruits, evolved on the North American continent. I hope to taste some from my own trees in 2016. :-)

Bertold, were those in the Midwest? probably American persimmons too. If we are fortunate, maybe in 5 years I can supply you with some local grown. :-)

I think the main challenges getting more people to grow them are - horticultural literacy, most people just dont know; difficult to transplant, so you have to start with a really tiny tree, and then it might be 4 or 5 years to get fruit, And most American persimmons require both a male and female trees, although there are exceptions.

A few years ago I was at Shorty's nursery in Vancouver, they had some nice 5foot tall persimmon trees. I asked the sales person if it was male or female, he said they dont come separately. I also asked if it was American or Asian, he didnt know, and I asked for the variety, he said persimmons dont have varieties. None of those responses are true, he was just making it up, and i didnt buy one,
Comment by Randall Smith on November 25, 2015 at 7:22am

As a matter of fact, I'm making persimmon pudding today! However, nobody will eat it but me. I'm thinking about calling it something like "brown sugar delight", omitting the word "persimmon".

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on November 24, 2015 at 10:23pm

Frozen persimmons are a great dessert. My auntie used to make a wonderful persimmon pudding for Thanksgiving.

Comment by Daniel Wachenheim on November 24, 2015 at 10:14pm

Persimmons - Around here, some of the grocery stores carry fresh Asian persimmons.  They are usually the size of a small apple.  These are "non-astringent" - eaten when firm and crunchy.  If you did that with an astringent persimmon, it would be like a mouthful of talc.

I don't like nonastringent crunchy persimmons.  To me they have an off taste.  I read that all they need to do is ripen, and you can eat them like jelly.

I placed them into a bag of apples.  Apples emit ethylene, which ripens fruit.  After 3 or 4 days, the persimmons were soft, like over ripe tomatoes.  Cut in half and scoop out the flesh with a spoon.  So good - super sweet, like a spiced apricot only much juicier.

Deviled alligator eggs.  The grocery store sold small avocados in an egg carton - like container, calling them alligator eggs.  I cut them in half, scooped them out of their "shell", took out the seed, and filled the center with salsa.  Ning said he wouldn't like it, but he did.  They were like deviled eggs, only green, with red "yolk" instead of egg yolk.

Sometimes it doesn't take much to amuse me.

Comment by Randall Smith on November 23, 2015 at 7:04am

Daniel, I commented on your garden blogspot.

I hand picked a whole bunch of persimmons to be sold at the farmers market by my kids. They sold exactly NONE! Nate said people were totally ignorant about them. How sad. Now I have to grind them into pulp--that is, if he didn't throw them away.

Comment by Plinius on November 23, 2015 at 12:36am

I can hear you counting the days, Daniel! 

Comment by Daniel Wachenheim on November 22, 2015 at 4:23pm

Randy, maybe that old barn burned down.  The wood ash could cause alkalinity.  Or the cement.  Or maybe they had piles of lime there for use on the farm.  I guess it doesn't matter - it's alkaline regardless.

First frost today.  Low was 23.  I'm glad it came.  Now I can clean up the borders and vegetable beds.  I wanted to wait for a killing frost.  I don't know why.  Now I have to wait for my next week off work, which is the first week of Jan.  Weather and energy permitting - clear borders and kitchen garden beds.  Clear some more blackberries.  Not too much - last time I overdid it and couldnt function for 2 days.


I found sources for scion for another Purdue-Rutgers-Illiniois disease resistant apple,  Goldrush.  I want to add that to a multigraft, and the old 1700s variety Baldwin, and a couple more.  I like grafting and it isn't physically difficult at all.  Planning ahead for late winter.

Comment by Randall Smith on November 18, 2015 at 7:20am

Yes, Daniel, experience is the best teacher. And experimenting is the only way to go. I always enjoy reading about what you're doing next. Very admirable. Relax now for several weeks.

As far as my garden soil (and I'm repeating myself), I've been told a barn once occupied the very spot the garden sits. To this day, I still pull up stones, rocks, concrete, nails, etc. When I first gardened, nearly 40 years ago, the soil was basically clay. I added a dumptruck full of sand and have enriched the soil with all sorts of organic matter. I finally have about 5-6" of good topsoil. However, it remains alkaline according to Purdue's soil testing (currently, checked by self soil testing). Besides pine needles, I also add sulfur.  The good news is, my garden is fairly productive. Only a few plants don't survive--blueberries, for example.

Comment by Daniel Wachenheim on November 17, 2015 at 9:52am

Randy, if I had any energy, I would be collecting the neighbors' leaves right now for compost!  Leaves are my favorite source.

How did your soil wind up alkaline?  Was there a woodfire there, or a lot of lime?  Somehow, I thought Indiana soils would be acidic, but I don't know why I thought that.

Joan, I imagine you puttering in your greenhouse.  The idea makes me happy.

After overdoing it last week with clearing a small area of brush, I'm still tired and aching a week later.  So none of that until I'm off work for a week in early December.

All rainy and chilly now.  We might have had a little frost, but not a big one.  Things are looking goopy and rotten from all of the rain.  It feels overdue for first frost. 

I ordered some new bare-root fruit trees for February planting.  Not necessary to order now, but planning keeps me going.  There is a near-black plum-cherry hybrid (Nadia), a pear that is a hybrid between red Bartlett Pear and an Asian pear (Maxie), an apple from the Purdue-Rutgers-Illinois (PRI) disease-resistant apple breeding program (Winecrisp).   I have their summer apple, Pristine, and the first apples were wonderful.  Most PRI Apples have PRI in their name, Pristine, Priscilla, etc - also in winecRIsP. 

I added another Pawpaw, this one develped by a devoted horticulturalist who specialized in them for decades (Allegheney).  They take 3 or 4 years to fruit, and I think one of my first ones was inappropriate for  this area, too small and late for maritime summers.  Hopeful 2 of the first pawpaw trrees will fruit 2016.

Some replace dead or nonproductive fruit trees from my orchard / food forest.   Two trees were lost to voles eating off all of the bark below ground.  One peach has not fruited in the 7 years I've had it, time to cull.  One or two trees might die due to canker.  Some fruit trees don't live long or are not adapted here, only way to know is to try.  The minidwarf apples turned out to be a bust, nonpruductive, poor quality apples, plus their roots are too shallow for the dry and expected to be dryer summers.    Always learning, and it feels like half of what I thought a couple of years ago seems wrong now.

Comment by Randall Smith on November 17, 2015 at 7:23am
I now have 3 piles of leaves and pine needles in my garden near my compost pile. Come Spring, I'll alternate them with grass clippings and soil. That usually works to make good compost. My garden soil is very alkaline and needs acidic pine needles to lower the pH.

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