Gardening: What are you growing ?

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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby dandelion on July 1st, 2017, 7:34 am 

There are no like buttons in this area, but I like the posts about weeds or wildflowers and such.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on July 1st, 2017, 8:32 am 

Don't get too comfortable! Dandelions make a dandy wine - second only to parsnips...
third, until the **@#%** township maintenance crew chopped down all the elderberry bushes along the back roads. My very last bottle of 2005 elder went to a wedding last fall.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby dandelion on July 1st, 2017, 1:12 pm 

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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby dandelion on July 1st, 2017, 1:12 pm 

Elderberry wine- delicious! Such a pity. I understand, after Zetreque’s posts in Vivian’s thread on such things, I’ve discovered I like dandelion and burdock drinks very much :)
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 1st, 2017, 2:13 pm 

dandelion » July 1st, 2017, 11:12 am wrote:Elderberry wine- delicious! Such a pity. I understand, after Zetreque’s posts in Vivian’s thread on such things, I’ve discovered I like dandelion and burdock drinks very much :)


I love eating dandelions in the spring but stopped doing it when I realized the dogs walking down the bike path might be peeing on them. Dandelion roots make a good herb tea for cleaning out the intestines. It is a whole lot easier buying the packaged tea than making my own.

About mushrooms, I would surely attempt growing them if I had the right place for mushrooms. In Oregon, mushroom hunting is an activity many enjoy, but I would never eat one I found, not knowing the difference between safe ones and poisonous ones. We have an annual mushroom event and the variety of mushrooms is amazing!
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on July 1st, 2017, 3:28 pm 

Athena » July 1st, 2017, 1:13 pm wrote: In Oregon, mushroom hunting is an activity many enjoy, but I would never eat one I found, not knowing the difference between safe ones and poisonous ones. We have an annual mushroom event and the variety of mushrooms is amazing!

I know there are only three or four toxic - not deadly - varieties in Ontario; that most are okay to eat and some are very good. And yet, such is the effect of early training that I would not dare to eat most of the mushrooms I could readily pick around here. The only for-sure safe ones are morels, and the patch I know about belong to a neighbour. Every spring, I'm tempted to poach and talk myself out of it.
Some of the bracket fungi are supposed to be edible, but do not look appetizing. I have tried puffballs, that some people prize as a delicacy - and thought I was eating a foam pillow.
But oysters, now, that's a very good mushroom, usually beyond our grocery budget.

I would surely attempt growing them if I had the right place for mushrooms.

Seems you don't need anything that special, or very big. A cabinet that can be kept dark and humid; plastic containers such as baked goods from the supermarket come in (I sacrificed myself to a dozen sugared doughnuts for this one), some cardboard... I'll let you know how it works out.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 2nd, 2017, 11:32 am 

LOL Oh poor baby, you had to eat a dozen sugared doughnuts. Did that hurt too much? I haven't eaten a donut in years because I just shouldn't have the wheat, sugar, and fats. I love my salads in the summer, but eating them day after day gets to be hard. Having my own lettuce growing just out the back door helps, but donuts, breads, crackers.. sigh. Okay, I have to stop this! Whine- a morning cup of coffee and donut? No! But the store where I can get both is a nice walk from home. Tempting, but that also means spending money. I hate spending money.

Thinking of mushrooms helps shift my mind. I don't think I have eaten a mushroom I don't like. This link explains why we should eat mushrooms. http://m.mushroominfo.com/benefits/ I love putting a handful of mushrooms on my salads, especially because they are filling without being high in calories and also have fiber which helps rid our bodies of extra calories.

In the garden plot next to mine is an abandoned homemade box for starting plants. I wonder if it could be used for growing mushrooms? I am afraid it would get too hot. What do mushrooms want? Do you know the temperature range they like best?

But speaking of hot.... I am wondering if we will have a summer? We have had terrible heat waves that last a couple of days, but we are back into cool weather. It isn't getting really warm until late in the day. My great grandson's lakeside birthday party was almost ruined by cloudy cool weather.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on July 2nd, 2017, 2:43 pm 

Athena » July 2nd, 2017, 10:32 am wrote:LOL Oh poor baby, you had to eat a dozen sugared doughnuts. Did that hurt too much?

I'm actually pacing myself: put them in individual zip bags in the freezer, for travel rations or emergency breakfast when I run out of the lemon coffee cake I usually share with the most rickety of our cats. Can't eat bread anymore, but I'm okay with either soft or crisp baked goods. Can't eat leafy salad; have to cook and puree vegetables, and most of them taste bitter now. Ironically, cauliflower, which used to be my favourite, I can both taste and swallow --- except that it was the last food I was able to eat before I got violently ill and the psychological association lingers: it took 8 years, post-chemo before I could stand the smell of it. I'm looking forward to summer squash, though.
We all change and get changed in different ways as we survive long past nature's use for us.
I hate spending money.

Ah, but saving it is the sweetest revenge!
If I can get this oyster production going - no guarantee; I've failed twice with shiitakes, outdoors - I may try enoki in a jar and even give sprouting another shot.
The little bit of reorganization of the pantry required for that (I need one small piece of furniture there that's currently in here) has got me fired up to reorganize my workroom. Like, down to the walls - move everything! I've been dissatisfied for ages, but laziness won out. Now, I'd like to be doing something outside, the weather won't let me, and I'm ready to channel that frustration into action.

What do mushrooms want? Do you know the temperature range they like best?

There's a ton of free information on the net, or web or floss or cloud or whatever the aether full of human thought is called now.
This one is a whole, inclusive treatise:
http://journeytoforever.org/farm_library/AD40.pdf
This video is where I got the starting instructions
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ystRW4rlqTk
There are several different media and containers shown on You Tube. I'm planning to use coffee grounds that I saved up over a month, which means that they'll have picked up some mould, so I'll pasteurize them over steam in a canning kettle. All the instructors agree that the biggest problem is contamination. It's important to disinfect everything. If you're using a shed, probably wash it out with a bleach solution and line with plastic. You'll want something heavy and thick to keep the fungus spores out and humidity in. I'm doing it indoors, so a drop-sheet from the dollar store ought to be enough. Plus, it's new; should be sterile.
The optimal temperature for oysters is about room temperature - 22-25 C.
Here is another simple site http://www.wikihow.com/Grow-Mushrooms-Indoors
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 3rd, 2017, 11:08 am 

I tried to grow mushrooms years ago, and it didn't work at all. I have always wanted to try it again. With these pointers, I think I'll try again. I have also been tasting the wild ones I find. I first try a small bit at first, and so far I have several I know are ok to eat, although the more recent finds are not that flavorful. The oysters on the north side of the ash trees seem to be the local treasure in these parts.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 4th, 2017, 2:50 pm 

Serpent » July 2nd, 2017, 12:43 pm wrote:
Athena » July 2nd, 2017, 10:32 am wrote:LOL Oh poor baby, you had to eat a dozen sugared doughnuts. Did that hurt too much?

I'm actually pacing myself: put them in individual zip bags in the freezer, for travel rations or emergency breakfast when I run out of the lemon coffee cake I usually share with the most rickety of our cats. Can't eat bread anymore, but I'm okay with either soft or crisp baked goods. Can't eat leafy salad; have to cook and puree vegetables, and most of them taste bitter now. Ironically, cauliflower, which used to be my favourite, I can both taste and swallow --- except that it was the last food I was able to eat before I got violently ill and the psychological association lingers: it took 8 years, post-chemo before I could stand the smell of it. I'm looking forward to summer squash, though.
We all change and get changed in different ways as we survive long past nature's use for us.

http://www.livestrong.com/article/518590-is-there-anything-that-will-help-me-digest-lettuce/If you're having difficulty digesting lettuce, it may be due to its fiber content. If your diet is lacking in fiber and you consume lettuce, the bacteria in your digestive tract may have a difficult time handling it, causing abdominal pain, gas and bloating. To ease symptoms, eat smaller amounts of lettuce and slowly increase your intake as tolerated to allow time for the bacteria to catch up. Make sure to drink plenty of water as you increase your fiber intake -- getting more fiber without adequate hydration can cause constipation.


I finally paid attention to my doctor and began using fiber I mix in water, and I haven't thought I need to go to the emergency room since using this extra fiber daily. However, I am having trouble with my salads that are high in fiber and responded to your mention of this by getting the above information. I struggle with drinking enough water. I think I need to commit to having a glass of water when I exercise and with each meal. And perhaps a large salad for dinner is not the right thing for me? A large salad for lunch and walking to help the digestion may be better?

I wish I could grow squash! I have to wait for the beetles that grow in the soil to leave. When I was having a lot of trouble, squashes were the best for me to eat.

I am glad you didn't eat the donuts all at once.

I hate spending money.

Ah, but saving it is the sweetest revenge!
If I can get this oyster production going - no guarantee; I've failed twice with shiitakes, outdoors - I may try enoki in a jar and even give sprouting another shot.
The little bit of reorganization of the pantry required for that (I need one small piece of furniture there that's currently in here) has got me fired up to reorganize my workroom. Like, down to the walls - move everything! I've been dissatisfied for ages, but laziness won out. Now, I'd like to be doing something outside, the weather won't let me, and I'm ready to channel that frustration into action.


I like your attitude. I never thought of saving money as a sweet revenge, but I get it! I hate being so broke I can't even buy toilet paper. I have been there. It is much better not being devastated by a car repair because the money is in the bank.

I forgot about sprouting. I love sprouts and now that I do have some money in the bank, I could consider the equipment for sprouting.

Make an action plan for your organizing. Be clear on what you want to get done, set a day and time of day to do it. If you accomplish a little bit let me know, and shame me into organizing my work space. I am stuck in inertia. Stuff keeps piling up and I feel overwhelmed. I know better, but I just don't feel motivated.

What do mushrooms want? Do you know the temperature range they like best?

There's a ton of free information on the net, or web or floss or cloud or whatever the aether full of human thought is called now.
This one is a whole, inclusive treatise:
http://journeytoforever.org/farm_library/AD40.pdf
This video is where I got the starting instructions
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ystRW4rlqTk
There are several different media and containers shown on You Tube. I'm planning to use coffee grounds that I saved up over a month, which means that they'll have picked up some mould, so I'll pasteurize them over steam in a canning kettle. All the instructors agree that the biggest problem is contamination. It's important to disinfect everything. If you're using a shed, probably wash it out with a bleach solution and line with plastic. You'll want something heavy and thick to keep the fungus spores out and humidity in. I'm doing it indoors, so a drop-sheet from the dollar store ought to be enough. Plus, it's new; should be sterile.
The optimal temperature for oysters is about room temperature - 22-25 C.
Here is another simple site http://www.wikihow.com/Grow-Mushrooms-Indoors



Wow, I would have never thought sterilization was important for growing any plant. That is most curious to me. Things that grow in dirt must grow with microorganisms. Interesting how they figure out who is friend and who is foe.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on July 4th, 2017, 3:47 pm 

Athena » July 4th, 2017, 1:50 pm wrote: Wow, I would have never thought sterilization was important for growing any plant. That is most curious to me. Things that grow in dirt must grow with microorganisms. Interesting how they figure out who is friend and who is foe.

That's because mushroom are not actually plants. They're fungi, and all kinds of fungi like the same kind of conditions and nutrients. Wild fungi are more aggressive and more numerous than the tame varieties. Their spores are airborne, ubiquitous and invisible. You need to get rid of the undesirable ones (fungus weeds) in order to isolate and cultivate the desirable (edible) ones.
I'm trying to keep everything very clean this time. I think the first batch of culture on cardboard is starting to grow, but it'll be another week before I can inoculate the coffee grounds.

Joke's on me. I became emboldened to buy a package of enoki that looks like it's growing a bit of fuzz on its feet, and then looked up how to cultivate them. Turns out they prefer cooler temperatures; try again in September. Oh well, stir-fry tonight.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 5th, 2017, 12:32 pm 

Serpent » July 4th, 2017, 1:47 pm wrote:
Athena » July 4th, 2017, 1:50 pm wrote: Wow, I would have never thought sterilization was important for growing any plant. That is most curious to me. Things that grow in dirt must grow with microorganisms. Interesting how they figure out who is friend and who is foe.

That's because mushroom are not actually plants. They're fungi, and all kinds of fungi like the same kind of conditions and nutrients. Wild fungi are more aggressive and more numerous than the tame varieties. Their spores are airborne, ubiquitous and invisible. You need to get rid of the undesirable ones (fungus weeds) in order to isolate and cultivate the desirable (edible) ones.
I'm trying to keep everything very clean this time. I think the first batch of culture on cardboard is starting to grow, but it'll be another week before I can inoculate the coffee grounds.

Joke's on me. I became emboldened to buy a package of enoki that looks like it's growing a bit of fuzz on its feet, and then looked up how to cultivate them. Turns out they prefer cooler temperatures; try again in September. Oh well, stir-fry tonight.


Okay, interesting fact that mushrooms are fungi, not plants.

I am forever buying packages of mushrooms that don't last as long as I need them to last. I eat them anyway. That goes with most foods, eating it fast enough can be a problem. I am getting better at not buying too much. I don't like grocery shopping, so I buy a lot of food at one time and then realize I have too much.

I love having lettuce in my backyard and picking what I want for the day, instead of buying whole heads of it.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on July 5th, 2017, 1:19 pm 

Athena » July 5th, 2017, 11:32 am wrote:I am forever buying packages of mushrooms that don't last as long as I need them to last. I eat them anyway. That goes with most foods, eating it fast enough can be a problem. I am getting better at not buying too much. I don't like grocery shopping, so I buy a lot of food at one time and then realize I have too much.

I love having lettuce in my backyard and picking what I want for the day, instead of buying whole heads of it.

A chest freezer can be a tribulation, but also a boon. (Chest, not upright; far more energy-efficient.) It may be a problem to place, but there are some quite small ones that wedge in between the washer and dryer and provide a surface. (Better, replace the dryer or dish-washer, which are energy-guzzlers and, though convenient, not strictly necessary.) Mushrooms have a very brief shelf-life (also a very brief field-life), but freeze well. My preferred preservation method is to peel and slice or dice them and sautee in a small amount of oil, then pack in 2-serving sized square airtight plastic containers. (They stack neatly.) This way, the defrosted mushrooms are ready to serve as anything; be seasoned or combined in any way - main course, casserole, side dish (a favourite around here is sliced sauteed red onion, yellow pepper and, mushroom - always grey, unfortunately) in pasta sauce, omelette or stir-fry, or on spinach salad.
In the absence of sufficient freezer space, cooked mushrooms, in a well sealed container, last longer in the fridge, too, than raw ones.
Most vegetables freeze well, and we often have entire leftover meals - because it's hard to cook a single meal for one old person, and each of us has a different diet.

You know you can grow mesclun mix in a window-box all year, right?
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 5th, 2017, 4:14 pm 

We are starting a heat wave and the tomatoes are doing great. I just planted some more carrots and planted beets the other day. I also have a potato box started needing a third 2x4 frame to build it up. It is about 30x36 with 3 plants and 3 more will start growing soon I hope. It will keep growing taller, as long as you can keep the dirt piling up along the stems. Otherwise the stems grow long and spindly and wilt off. By fall there should be potatoes in every level of the growing box, and a health plant on top of it all.
But when I have the time, I will start on a mushroom box of some sort.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on July 5th, 2017, 6:56 pm 

Watson » July 5th, 2017, 3:14 pm wrote:We are starting a heat wave and the tomatoes are doing great. I just planted some more carrots and planted beets the other day. I also have a potato box started needing a third 2x4 frame to build it up. It is about 30x36 with 3 plants and 3 more will start growing soon I hope. It will keep growing taller, as long as you can keep the dirt piling up along the stems. Otherwise the stems grow long and spindly and wilt off. By fall there should be potatoes in every level of the growing box, and a health plant on top of it all.
But when I have the time, I will start on a mushroom box of some sort.

Potato box sounds good. Have you overcome the late-season blight? I gave up trying to grow potatoes, ten or more years ago, because my soil was contaminated. I recall, about then Vesey's selling seedlings - from seed, not eyes - to get around it.

We have 12' raised beds, framed with 2x10's. All 4 populated now - one with strawberries, so that's a permanent arrangement; the parsnip bed is supposed to have carrots and beets, too, but I don't see them. By now, there ought to be edible greens. I had to plant the peas all at once, rather than at two-week intervals, because some damn fool (V) left the container, uncovered, outside, in the rain. Squashes won't make it, and I haven't found replacement at the garden centers. This time of year, they ought to be half price ... except, everybody else had their tender plants freeze or get clobbered by hail, too. Nothing left but the usual hot peppers they always stock lots and nobody needs more than two.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 5th, 2017, 10:13 pm 

I have tried the boxes in years past but not a serious effort. Last year I tried without and that's when I got the small yield and spindly plants. I haven't had a plight or pest problem with the spuds so far. This is the first year I planning on a big yield of various things. I can start using the oriental green and soon the rainbow char will be smaller, but ready to take a few. To soon to tell about the beets and carrots.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 6th, 2017, 12:48 pm 

Serpent » July 5th, 2017, 11:19 am wrote:
Athena » July 5th, 2017, 11:32 am wrote:I am forever buying packages of mushrooms that don't last as long as I need them to last. I eat them anyway. That goes with most foods, eating it fast enough can be a problem. I am getting better at not buying too much. I don't like grocery shopping, so I buy a lot of food at one time and then realize I have too much.

I love having lettuce in my backyard and picking what I want for the day, instead of buying whole heads of it.

A chest freezer can be a tribulation, but also a boon. (Chest, not upright; far more energy-efficient.) It may be a problem to place, but there are some quite small ones that wedge in between the washer and dryer and provide a surface. (Better, replace the dryer or dish-washer, which are energy-guzzlers and, though convenient, not strictly necessary.) Mushrooms have a very brief shelf-life (also a very brief field-life), but freeze well. My preferred preservation method is to peel and slice or dice them and sautee in a small amount of oil, then pack in 2-serving sized square airtight plastic containers. (They stack neatly.) This way, the defrosted mushrooms are ready to serve as anything; be seasoned or combined in any way - main course, casserole, side dish (a favourite around here is sliced sauteed red onion, yellow pepper and, mushroom - always grey, unfortunately) in pasta sauce, omelette or stir-fry, or on spinach salad.
In the absence of sufficient freezer space, cooked mushrooms, in a well sealed container, last longer in the fridge, too, than raw ones.
Most vegetables freeze well, and we often have entire leftover meals - because it's hard to cook a single meal for one old person, and each of us has a different diet.

You know you can grow mesclun mix in a window-box all year, right?



Now this is why people talk to each other. I never thought to freeze the second half of my package of mushrooms. Nor have I attempted to sautee them so they last longer. I have been dealing with the raw sliced mushrooms that kind of get slimmy before they are eaten. I can hardly wait until we harvest our peppers, to try your recipe. I have a freezer and I am working on clearing it out so we can put in this year's harvest.

I am not sure I could grow mesclun, but it is worth trying. My windows face north. The other side of the apartment building gets plenty of sun but not my side. I can not start plants in my apartment.

This weekend I must get to my garden and weed it. I think I will plant kale where I took the spinach out, or is there something else that I might try? If this weather lasted I could plant fall plants, but we should get hot days any time now.

Our weather is most pleasant, dropping into the low 50tys at night and into the 80tys in the late afternoon. I thought the hottest time of day was always 2pm but now it is 4pm to 7pm. Is this different or is my memory wrong? I am wearing a sweater in July! That doesn't seem right to me.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 6th, 2017, 1:08 pm 

Watson » July 5th, 2017, 8:13 pm wrote:I have tried the boxes in years past but not a serious effort. Last year I tried without and that's when I got the small yield and spindly plants. I haven't had a plight or pest problem with the spuds so far. This is the first year I planning on a big yield of various things. I can start using the oriental green and soon the rainbow char will be smaller, but ready to take a few. To soon to tell about the beets and carrots.


You guys are making me want to get the boxes that are self-watering like this one...

https://cedarcraft.com/products/self-wa ... -x-42-x-30

It would cost a lot of money to get these and fill them good soil, then cover the soil so weeds don't blow in, but it sure would be nice to grow food without all the work.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 6th, 2017, 4:46 pm 

I like the idea of the height, but I would need several of them.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 8th, 2017, 11:19 am 

Here is something new to try.

http://www.popsci.com/growing-plants-in-...-resistant

EXCERPT: [...] Sure enough, over 70 percent of the plants grown in soil mixed with acetic acid survived drought conditions for at least 14 days. Plants grown in other organic acids (or just water) had pretty much all been wiped out by that point in the experiment. And the promising results held for various species, including common crops such as maize, rice, and wheat—all displayed significant boosts in drought resilience with a little help from vinegar, once researchers determined the ideal concentration for each plant. [...] In comparison to transgenic processes that could be used to make plants sturdier, the vinegar trick is an inexpensive, simple, and sustainable process that can be made accessible to many. Kim says he has already received interest in this method from everyone from farmers to flower shop owners to amateur gardeners....

MORE: http://www.popsci.com/growing-plants-in-...-resistant
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 8th, 2017, 1:56 pm 

Some thing is wrong with the links. I'll look back later. Hope they can fix them.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 9th, 2017, 11:02 am 

Sorry about that. I hope this one works better. It worked for me.

http://www.popsci.com/growing-plants-in ... -resistant
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Watson on July 9th, 2017, 11:36 am 

Interesting. I wonder if there are any other benefits adding a bit of vinegar to the garden? Although drought is not an issue for my garden.
Also being green for the lake next door, I was going to use a stronger solution of vinegar to kill off some weeds on the drive and path way.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on July 9th, 2017, 4:11 pm 

It appears that link is adjust to fail after it is used. If a person googles about information about vinegar making plants drought resistant, the google link will work, but if its copied and pasted, it stops working.

Killing weeds with vinegar? Okay, that means I don't want to dump vinegar in my garden to see what happens. The link says...

In normal plants, HDA6 is linked to the biological pathway that produces acetate (a salt formed by acetic acid, and the main component of vinegar) during a drought, which helps keep the sprouts alive.


Salting a field will destroy plants, so I assume too much vinegar has the negative effect of killing the plant. But a little vinegar is helpful. Kind of like too much water kills and not enough also kills. Everthing in balance.

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10725-006-9130-6

Abstract
Effect of different concentrations of indole acetic acid (IAA) under varying soil water deficit conditions on two barley cultivars viz. B-99094 and Jau-87 was investigated in soil filled earthen pots. There were six treatments including control each with four replicates. Three concentrations of IAA (0, 15 and 30 mg l−1) were applied as foliar spray 30 days after germination. After hormone application, half of the pots were subjected to one cycle of water stress (withholding of water till incipient wilting), followed by regular watering. Plant height, photosynthetic rate, transpiration rate, stomatal conductance, water use efficiency relative water content, dry biomass, and grain yield/plant were significantly reduced by water stress. However, IAA treatments alleviated the adverse effect of water stress and successful in enhancing the plant growth and yield of barley cultivars. Barley cultivar Jau-87 performed better than B-99094. IAA application␣was effective in enhancing growth and photosynthetic efficiency of barley both under normal and water stress conditions.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on August 28th, 2017, 9:02 am 

Help, my cucumbers are full of flowers but not producing fruit. I have two different kinds of cucumbers and have gotten only a couple of cucumbers. The lemon cucumber was put in late because early in the season I couldn't find a lemon cucumber plant anywhere. I don't know what the other cucumber is but it is very bitter. I am so disappointed! Could there be a problem with my soil?
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on August 28th, 2017, 10:06 am 

Athena » August 28th, 2017, 8:02 am wrote:Help, my cucumbers are full of flowers but not producing fruit. I have two different kinds of cucumbers and have gotten only a couple of cucumbers. The lemon cucumber was put in late because early in the season I couldn't find a lemon cucumber plant anywhere. I don't know what the other cucumber is but it is very bitter. I am so disappointed! Could there be a problem with my soil?

More likely lack of insects. I got hardly any of the long Chinese runner beans in the cool house, even though it has been blooming profusely since May. Tomatoes, too are making a lot moer flowers than fruit.

The cucumbers are okay - just okay, not exuberant - and the squashes were slow to grow, flowering but not producing fruit. Usually, by this time of year, we're up to our ears in zucchini and marrow. They're self-pollinating, so it can't be that I planted too few of each kind. No butterflies, no bees, not even beetles. Few crickets, zero mantids, plenty of ants. Maybe they can fill in the vacant pollinator niches - but it will take a few hundred years to make the adaptation. Verily, Ants shall inherit the Earth --
but by then, i won't care about vegetable marrow with sour cream and dill

The firewood is always wet or mouldy or wet and mouldy and I haven't got half of it in yet.
My third attempt at mushroom culture is under way. The first two failed --- wet and mouldy.
There's a bundle of old rugs and blankets the stray cats used last winter that I keep meaning to take to the dump, but I need them to dry out first - wet and mouldy - because we pay by weight.
It's been such a miserable summer all around, I'm tempted to switch from beer to scotch.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Athena on August 28th, 2017, 3:43 pm 

Yea. I haven't seen many honey bees and that is worrisome. I mean the decline in honey bees is noticeable and that is what I feared the problem was, but I like to deny things I don't like.

Why aren't the rags and blankets drying? The cats may need them again this winter. Wash them with baking soda and put them in a dryer. Baking soda is good for removing mold.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on August 28th, 2017, 4:08 pm 

Athena » August 28th, 2017, 2:43 pm wrote:Why aren't the rags and blankets drying?

Because every time they're nearly dry, there comes another three days of rain.

The cats may need them again this winter.

I'm fervently hoping not. The boys we had fixed can come inside; though one of them is noisy, hyperactive and stupid, the other is quite domesticated, and there is a vacancy since my favourite old lady died (Her even older sister is still in pretty good shape at 17 - these barn cats are durable!) Tiny is still living on the back porch, relatively untamed, but he has his own little house.

Wash them with baking soda and put them in a dryer. Baking soda is good for removing mold.

Bleccch! While the rains have pretty much washed away the feral tomcat piss, that stuff isn't coming into the house. We haven't had a dryer since we switched over to solar power eight years ago - it's an energy-gobbling luxury - and just at the mo, no washing machine, either. The over-designed, over-complicated Whirlpool died at not even eight years old (Remember when a washer was expected to work 20-25 years? While shopping for a new one, i came across two articles about major brand recalls.) and the new Amana (least bells and whistles) hasn't been delivered yet. We just about bend to washing our own underwear and socks by hand - zero chance we're wasting our little spare energy on foul rags.
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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby doogles on August 29th, 2017, 4:44 am 

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We're in the last month of winter here in Brisbane where the climate is described as subtropical. One of my wife's hobbies is gardening and the following are shots taken in the last week or so. Apart from these flowers, whose names I mostly do not know, she has almost every bromeliad ever invented. Epiphytes and semi-succulents do very well here.

We do not cultivate vegetables because the ones available in local supermarkets are very cheap and almost perfect-looking specimens. I know at this stage that anyone reading this is about to chunder from such a portrayal of perfection so I'll get on with the posting and shut up.

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Re: Gardening: What are you growing ?

Postby Serpent on August 29th, 2017, 9:46 am 

Oh. Em. Gee.
You must be living in the original garden, south of Eden.
Those orchids are magnificent! All we have is little brown ones.
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