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Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #240 on: October 17, 2019, 07:18:23 PM »
STIHL still has a, some would say, outdated franchise sales model. But it keeps their reputation up and they continue to make solid products, often worth the extra cost when compared to other brands. Also does help support more local, smaller businesses- not just Amazon or the HD/Lowe's. You could always look on CL, pawnshops, or small engine repair shops where a used or refurbished model might be available. Overkill for such a small yard but that is the American Way, dammit!

Pawnshops have been a good resource for me at times.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #241 on: October 18, 2019, 03:32:29 AM »
Someone once warned me against buying tools from a pawnshop.  Their theory was that it was most likely a stolen tool, and if one purchased the stolen tool the karma would make that tool hurt you.

I don't know, last thyme I bought anything from a pawnshop it was when I was getting rid of an old bass guitar that someone gave to me for a free pizza.  There was a shitty drill press in there for $20, I think I ended up trading the bass guitar for the drill press.  The guy behind the counter said that the drill press wasn't worth it because it wouldn't do well on metal, but I wanted it for my wood-shop...  I think I got the better end of the deal, but I haven't yet used that drill-press going on ten years now, so we will see how the karma of the stolen drill press hurts me.

Glad I didn't trade for a band-saw...

-p

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #242 on: October 20, 2019, 03:18:30 PM »
I spent the day yesterday butchering the Redbud tree and the Honeysuckle hedge to get more light on the lawn and because they needed the haircut.  I think it will also help with the leaf cleanup as fall continues.  I got a lot more light than I was expecting, and today after I used that awesome STIHL BR-700 to blow off the mess I made yesterday I decided to get back on the mow every other day schedule while these sprouts mature.  I think it will encourage the dense turf I was seeing this spring and last fall, although now it will be all over the yard rather than in just the few spots I managed to weed last year.  Apparently, weed season is over for the year as I am not seeing anything that needs to be pulled as I do my pre-mow walk around.

Three days ago:
 [attachment=1]

 Today:
 [attachment=2]

While I was pruning yesterday I also was splitting some logs and had a good fire going in the fire-pit, apparently there were some live coals still in there and it was a bit exciting when I was blowing the leaves away from around the firepit to see a few live coals blow out and into the big pile of brush trimmings in the corner.  So far I haven't seen any indications of a brushfire and it was a few hours ago, so I think all will be well.  In the top-left of the picture you can see my kindling pile before and after the honeysuckle massacre, and that's about half of it the other half is on the compost heap behind the kindling pile.

I think the MiracleGrow application last week is starting to show results.  I may do that once a week until the freeze sets in to try to get some really robust growth.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #243 on: October 21, 2019, 02:20:57 AM »
I spent the day yesterday butchering the Redbud tree and the Honeysuckle hedge to get more light on the lawn and because they needed the haircut.  I think it will also help with the leaf cleanup as fall continues.  I got a lot more light than I was expecting, and today after I used that awesome STIHL BR-700 to blow off the mess I made yesterday I decided to get back on the mow every other day schedule while these sprouts mature.  I think it will encourage the dense turf I was seeing this spring and last fall, although now it will be all over the yard rather than in just the few spots I managed to weed last year.  Apparently, weed season is over for the year as I am not seeing anything that needs to be pulled as I do my pre-mow walk around.

Three days ago:
 [attachment=1,msg1362461]

 Today:
 [attachment=2,msg1362461]

While I was pruning yesterday I also was splitting some logs and had a good fire going in the fire-pit, apparently there were some live coals still in there and it was a bit exciting when I was blowing the leaves away from around the firepit to see a few live coals blow out and into the big pile of brush trimmings in the corner.  So far I haven't seen any indications of a brushfire and it was a few hours ago, so I think all will be well.  In the top-left of the picture you can see my kindling pile before and after the honeysuckle massacre, and that's about half of it the other half is on the compost heap behind the kindling pile.

I think the MiracleGrow application last week is starting to show results.  I may do that once a week until the freeze sets in to try to get some really robust growth.
What went on in the top left corner?

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #244 on: October 21, 2019, 07:19:16 AM »
What went on in the top left corner?

Big pile of brush from trimming the honeysuckle.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #245 on: October 23, 2019, 01:48:32 AM »
Big pile of brush from trimming the honeysuckle.
Well, I just never saw this side of you before.  It looks great!

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #246 on: October 30, 2019, 04:16:41 PM »
First freeze is supposed to happen tonight, the bentgrass is really liking this cold weather, I think.  While blowing the leaves, I noticed a sprig of bentgrass had put out a seedhead:

 [attachment=1]

I took this picture as snow-flakes were falling around me, and it has been pretty cold around here for the past few days/weeks.  I think this is a good sign that the bentgrass thrives in temperatures right above freezing, why else would it try to put out seeds?

My Stihl BR-700 privileges have been suspended, but my lawn buddy loaned me for the leaf season a "piece of shit" Stihl BG86 handheld.

Guess he needs the "big guy" for doing leaves or something.  Compared to the BR-700 it is a "piece of shit," not as high velocity and wears your hand/wrist out a bit if you are using it for an extended period.  Even though it took longer to clear the yard, it did blow the wet & lightly snowed upon leaves around well enough that it was still quicker and less damaging than raking.  I might see if he'll sell it to me, I'm hooked on the blowers now.

Here's the yard about 1-2 weeks ago:
 [attachment=2]

And here is what it looks like right before/during the 1st snow & freeze of the season:
 [attachment=3]

I think there has been significant growth, and if my recollections of the seeding from last fall are correct it will continue to grow on days when the temperatures get above freezing throughout the winter.  The big dog continues to do his after poop scratch/claw the ground maneuver, but I have some fencing that I lay on the ground in the thickest new sprout areas that protects that part, it is mainly the back part of the yard that he can jack up.  Maybe I will take a picture of his damage next time I pick up the dog crap, seems like when I catch him doing it and yell at him it only encourages him to do it more when I am not around.

My lawn-care buddy thinks I should make him wear "paw boots," haha.  I can imagine the sad look on Hanz face if I subjected him to that sort of indignity, I bet it would make him find some other destructive thing to do in the lawn as revenge, so I will just live with the damage until I can get some more Bermuda growing in there next summer.

-p

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #247 on: November 23, 2019, 06:50:37 AM »
Freeze be damned, I think the yard has improved.

 [attachment=1]
17NOV2019

I believe I mowed at some point between that one and this one:

 [attachment=2]
22NOV2019

I did spray some Miracle Grow liquid fertilizer over the yard at the beginning of the last "warm snap" which ended today, we had snow flurries.  This bentgrass does not seem to care, as soon as it gets above freezing it is awake and surviving...  does better in November than July I guess.

Dogs continue to stress it though, will seed more Bermuda grass in the spring.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #248 on: February 11, 2020, 01:01:51 AM »
I love this bentgrass, decided it looked a little "shaggy" and finally got around to running the mower over it this afternoon.  I think my last mowing was around a month ago +/- a week, this stuff managed to grow 1/2" or better in some places, and even seems to have spread just a tiny bit.  Nautical Shore what the average temperature in Kansas City has been this past month or so, seems to me that it's been right around freezing with several snow days, and quite a few weeks/days where the high didn't get above freezing.  The dogs continue to abuse the hell out of it, mainly from the urine burns, but the puppy went off his high protein diet around Christmas, and I noticed that some of the brown spots actually had green sprouts (thinly) coming back.  Snapped a few photos on my phone to send to my lawn mowing buddy (his beloved zoysia is dead and brown right now) to show him the true virtues of a cool weather grass.  He was impressed, especially at the pictures that showed mature seed-heads in freaking February!

 [attachment=1,msg1376146]

A closeup of the toe of my military issue 10W winter combat boot in the thick lush bentgrass

 [attachment=2,msg1376146]

Bentgrass putting out seed-heads in the middle of February, fer chrissakes!  (this was one of quite a few tufts)

 [attachment=3,msg1376146]

A half-inch of fresh cut grass in February, which I think is remarkable for average normal temps in Jan-Feb in Kansas City

 [attachment=4,msg1376146]

The yard, from about the opposite angle of my "normal" snaps.  I forgot, maybe I will take some comparison photos tomorrow.  Probably not.



That is all, Carrie Anne!

-p

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #249 on: February 11, 2020, 04:17:15 AM »
You've got a nice, big lot back there, pate.  What kind of trees have you got?

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #250 on: February 11, 2020, 12:20:17 PM »
You've got a nice, big lot back there, pate.  What kind of trees have you got?

Tiny lot actually.  Think it's 30' x 60'?  Around 1,500 sq feet which is a postage stamp compared to most yards in town.

Mostly volunteer trees that I have decided don't suck and allow to grow, or dig up from a bed and move somewhere else.

Tons of honeysuckle along the edges (found that if semi-aggressively trimmed works really well as hedgerow), not sure that qualifies as a tree...

One red-bud, have to thin that one out every few years as the canopy gets really thick.

Three "American Plums" (I think, they keep volunteering in my front lily-of-the-valley bed & I transplanted a few).

One big silver maple I let grow through the fence, should probably take it out but neighbors like the shade.

One Ash (I think, maybe Elm?) Growing through the fence in the "Plant Thunderdome" area.  Would like to remove that one, already had to replace the roof in part due to that one & believe it is responsible for messing up my foundation (100 year old limestone blocks & mortar, not a huge deal to patch & tuckpoint).  My lawn buddy and I "topped" it out away from the house two or three years ago and will we will "finish the job" eventually...

A small Locust tree out front, a Ginko tree (male, no stinky fruit), and a few semi-bonsai cedars here & there...

Probably the Ginko out front is my favorite, it is a "living fossil."

Oh, there is also a crab-apple of some sort in back.  Really pretty, red/green leaves, pink flowers, "weeping".  Native to the area, MO department of conservation sent me ten(?) seedlings when I bought the place and the dogs allowed one to survive.

I don't think elderberry is an actual tree, put one of those in last summer, and have some blackberries 5-6 that I think will replace the "fox-grape vine" along the back fence.  Or I will propagate some table-grape seeds I acquired from a guy that has them growing on his deck, pretty tasty make good jelly I bet, tart...


Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #251 on: March 03, 2020, 02:13:58 PM »
Now that the short and mild Fimbulwinter of 2019-2020 seems to be over I am resuming aggressive yard operations.  I should have taken some pictures of what happened over the winter,  apparently 22NOV2019 was the last reference picture I took:

 [attachment=1,msg1379478]

The dogs really did a number on the bentgrass over the winter, the urine "burns" are really apparent when I walk around and but for the People's Free Republic of Pate Canine Army forces it would be a lot more filled in.  Nautical Shore how these "burn" spots show up, but here is the yard today:

 [attachment=2,msg1379478]

This is the second of the every-other-day lawn mow regime, I think I will stress this stuff a bit and not water as much to encourage root growth and spread.  I may (if the PFRP environmental budget allows), attempt a spring Bentgrass overseed & top-dressing some thyme after St. Patrick's Day and before Easter, then give that 6 weeks or so to fill in and overseed with this "Princess 77 Bermuda" seed, or whatever the "new" version of that strain of Bermuda is.

Apparently, you can mow the Princess 77 Bermuda as low as 1/4"!!!  I will continue my 1" reel mowing, last year I lowered the mower to 3/4"-7/8" in mid-June or July and it devastated the bentgrass, I have decided that if I am going to lower the mow height in the future it will be when the entire lawn is filled in and established for at least 12 months since the last seeding.

The next PFRP Glorious Projekt is going to be a geodesic greenhaus on the concrete pad where I do my container garden.  The talented engineers of the PFRP are hard at work mocking up a scale model (1:16) of the projekt, here is one of the polyhedral geodesic sections they have mocked up that may be incorporated into the final design:

 [attachment=3,msg1379478]

It is a bit blurry, but that is to prevent any industrial espionage of our hard work.

Glorious Leader of the People's Free Republic of -pate (dick tater for lyfe)

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #252 on: March 03, 2020, 03:34:38 PM »
Now that the short and mild Fimbulwinter of 2019-2020 seems to be over I am resuming aggressive yard operations.  I should have taken some pictures of what happened over the winter,  apparently 22NOV2019 was the last reference picture I took:

 

The dogs really did a number on the bentgrass over the winter, the urine "burns" are really apparent when I walk around and but for the People's Free Republic of Pate Canine Army forces it would be a lot more filled in.  Nautical Shore how these "burn" spots show up, but here is the yard today:

 

This is the second of the every-other-day lawn mow regime, I think I will stress this stuff a bit and not water as much to encourage root growth and spread.  I may (if the PFRP environmental budget allows), attempt a spring Bentgrass overseed & top-dressing some thyme after St. Patrick's Day and before Easter, then give that 6 weeks or so to fill in and overseed with this "Princess 77 Bermuda" seed, or whatever the "new" version of that strain of Bermuda is.

Apparently, you can mow the Princess 77 Bermuda as low as 1/4"!!!  I will continue my 1" reel mowing, last year I lowered the mower to 3/4"-7/8" in mid-June or July and it devastated the bentgrass, I have decided that if I am going to lower the mow height in the future it will be when the entire lawn is filled in and established for at least 12 months since the last seeding.

The next PFRP Glorious Projekt is going to be a geodesic greenhaus on the concrete pad where I do my container garden.  The talented engineers of the PFRP are hard at work mocking up a scale model (1:16) of the projekt, here is one of the polyhedral geodesic sections they have mocked up that may be incorporated into the final design:

 

It is a bit blurry, but that is to prevent any industrial espionage of our hard work.

Glorious Leader of the People's Free Republic of -pate (dick tater for lyfe)
Big Dog Soldiers can be tough on a small yard. Especially if left alone also since they want activity, chase each other, or run from fence to fence checking out any noise, visitor, or vehicle approaching the house. I know one person who put a little 'window' in his fence so the dogs can see out and so less barking or attempting to see 'who is there.' Even small, scrappy dog soldiers can wear out a lawn. I still had a semi-circular pattern in ground from a previous owner who had two Jack Russells who would run from side fence, behind house, to other side fence to see 'whose there' 'what noise' and back again...all day long.


Elderberry by the way is prominent again in certain circles as some say it is it effective against the cold, flu and, possibly, against Corona-Chan virus. So keep it and cultivate it. But look up how to do it if you are going to use because some parts are poisonous. Apparently one can even make wine from it. 

ps: wise to have lose resolution on "dome" project photos Lots of theft of intellectual property and Communist spies out there. 

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #253 on: March 14, 2020, 03:09:19 PM »
 [attachment=1,msg1381576]

The yard about a week ago, I believe I have mowed 3-4 times.  Each time I mowed there were places where it had grown at least 1/2" over two days.  I mow at a 1" height, so if this were your cool season grasses like blue-grass etc, it would be the equivalent of those grasses growing 1 1/2" in two days (assuming you were cutting at a 3" height).

   [attachment=2,msg1381576]

The yard yesterday.  I think I will have to take some reference pictures from a greater height, at a higher angle (like from my second floor windows) it looks way better than what these low angle snaps show.  Maybe I will start doing a high angle snap about every month or so, nautical shore.

   [attachment=3,msg1381576]

For a sense of scale, the two above are exactly the same camera spot/time and the puppy Mongo photobombs the second (I think he is embarassed about his nuclear dog-urine and is trying to cover the bare spots he inflicted on the yard over the winter...)

   [attachment=4,msg1381576]

Above, again is for a sense of scale, this is a close-up of how dense this stuff grows.  The coin is a US quarter (approximately 1" diameter, which is about how tall the grass is if the quarter were to be set on its edge), and the tip of my size 10 boot.

I think I am going to skip a spring topdressing and over-seeding, it looks like it is going to fill in the bare spots fantastically.  I am curious to see if the plugs of zoysia and bermuda grass I put in various places react when the weather warms up enough for them to start growing.  I am wondering if the bentgrass chokes them out, or if due to the changing of the temperature (bentgrass loves cold, zoysia & bermuda love hot) there will be die-back/dormancy in the bentgrass accompanied by a growth/dormancy-emergence from the zoysia/bermuda.  My working theory on the soon to be three-year project is that the two different grass types will cohabitate synergistically to give me a lush green lawn year-round.  I believe this summer I will see if my theory is sound.

That is all.

-p

ediot:  Apparently my pictures have failed a bellchan security check, they may be infected with the 5G Coronabola virus wireless activation codes.  I will attempt to sneak them through the BellGab interdiction perimeter individually disguised as Aboriginal New Zealand landscape photographs, as I have not noted that the Coronabola virus has entered the interior of New Zealand yet, probably due to the superior warrior-ethos of the fine and admirable Maori peoples.

toWitIot:  What do I need to do to reinstate my Turbo Mode priviledges here?  (Asking for a friend, possibly a #BIFF)

threadiot: apparently the problem file is the close-up of the picture which I took with my phone, then photo-shopped to compress.  I have just compressed the image even further to see if that helps sneak it through as a NZ landscape photograph.  If that does not work I will attempt to edit this post for an unprecedented FOURTH thyme with a new photo taken from the same camera used for the other three.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #254 on: March 14, 2020, 03:19:11 PM »


That dog is HUGE, man! I donít mean nuthin by it.
Iím just sayin thatís a big dog is all.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #255 on: March 14, 2020, 03:27:50 PM »


That dog is HUGE, man! I donít mean nuthin by it.
Iím just sayin thatís a big dog is all.

I think it is more an artifact of the camera angle, Hanz is twice the size of that little guy.  Although he is a bit fat, I bet Mongo weighs every bit of 80lbs, I am going to grab a tape measure and see how tall he is at the shoulder...

Mongo is right at 2 feet tall at the shoulder, I consider that to be a medium sized dog personally.

That yard is incredibly small, maybe 30 foot wide(side to side in the photo) and 60 foot deep (from camera to back fence)...

-p

ediot2add:  the two balls in the background of the picture are standard-sized basketballs.



Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #256 on: March 26, 2020, 11:53:02 PM »
I need to take another reference photo of the lawn progress.  Been a few weeks, maybe this weekend...

I noticed that the Elderberry that I planted is putting out its spring leaves today while I was mowing and doing container garden potting soil prep.

Apparently there may be some value to the Elderberry in this "new normal," I have no idea when the fruit is ready for harvest, or if it will even fruit this year as I just put it in last fall.  Hey, maybe if this "pandemic" really lasts until August I can make an actual batch of medicinal Frumus Umphen Wine:

Top Four Antiviral Benefits of Elderberry

The People's Free Democratic Republic of Pate being such a small country, any excess Frumus Umphen Wine not needed for local health will surely command a premium export dollar in the post-apocalyptic whirled.

I may have to institute a decree that the only specie accepted for foreign trade to be gold bullion, very difficult to counterfeit.

Indeed.

-p

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #257 on: March 30, 2020, 10:08:09 AM »
Fantastic thread as I may need gardening help. Novice gardener. Whatís easy to plant in a planter? Baby steps.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #258 on: March 30, 2020, 03:26:53 PM »
Fantastic thread as I may need gardening help. Novice gardener. Whatís easy to plant in a planter? Baby steps.

Seeds.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #259 on: March 30, 2020, 04:05:50 PM »
I need to take another reference photo of the lawn progress.  Been a few weeks, maybe this weekend...

I noticed that the Elderberry that I planted is putting out its spring leaves today while I was mowing and doing container garden potting soil prep.

Apparently there may be some value to the Elderberry in this "new normal," I have no idea when the fruit is ready for harvest, or if it will even fruit this year as I just put it in last fall.  Hey, maybe if this "pandemic" really lasts until August I can make an actual batch of medicinal Frumus Umphen Wine:

Top Four Antiviral Benefits of Elderberry

The People's Free Democratic Republic of Pate being such a small country, any excess Frumus Umphen Wine not needed for local health will surely command a premium export dollar in the post-apocalyptic whirled.

I may have to institute a decree that the only specie accepted for foreign trade to be gold bullion, very difficult to counterfeit.

Indeed.

-p

Thanks for posting this. Unfortunately we canít message one another on here. I have three planters, about 12 inches deep . Could you recommend what I might begin planting that isnít too difficult as a beginner? And I love elderberries, btw. Could I plant those in there? Very familiar with their benefits as I use elderberry juice. Others have mentioned that you will probably attract various wildlife. We have deer on our property, foxes and other critters.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #260 on: March 31, 2020, 02:44:04 AM »
Chine, a foot deep for a "planter" is plenty for most anything that grows above ground and "fruits."

I am operating on the assumption that you want to eat the product of your plantings.  As for an elderberry, that is a perinnial(sp) those do best planted in the ground.  The perinnial(sp) needs to be adapted to your particular climate zone (i.e. can survive unaided over a winter).  Probably, you are looking for something to plant that is an annual in your container.  Squash, lettuce, beets, potatoes etc.

For starters I'd recommend Tomatoes.  High yeild, high vitamin C, high preservative potential.  Easy to gather seeds for the next year.  Need a lot of water, good drainage and have a calcium requirement.   Main trouble you run into with tomatoes is the soil medium you use to grow them in, tomatoes are very forgiving, but your container yield per plant in a container setting is going to depend very much on the soil and nutrients therein...  If you are buying seeds or starts avoid the "yuge" tomato varietals, the small "cherry" types do much better and will produce a greater yeild.

When I was young and living in my parents basement I hated tomatoes, but I grew the hell out of them.  All kinds of varieties, that I frequently did not pick (at my folks house I never used containers for a gardern, btw), at some point the tomatoes I tried reverse pollinated and regressed to this awesome little cherry/plum variety that grew like weeds year after year...  Tasty little things, almost a mini-yellow-Roma (Romas I never planted).  Quite delicious, actually the first tomato I actually thought tasted good.  Very prolific, but not a true cherry type, who knows?  My dog, Turtle, would eat them as I generally left them unharvested.  Funny that, canines and tomatoes generally do not agree and young Turtle lived forever.  I digress.

Thing with tomatoes, in particular with container grown ones, is "you don't want to put them to bed with their feet wet."  Use any old dirt you have on hand, but make sure that they are well drained when night sets in;  tomatoes are susceptible to a root fungus that thrives in overnight temps...

You might also try the curcurbit(sp) line;  squashes, cucumbers, melons.  Myself, I haven't had much luck with them:  I can get them to grow, but when they start flowering the "locusts" arrive, insect pestilience...  Probably, I haven't figured out the soil medium necessary for healthy curcurbit(sp) propagation in containers...

There is also the Cabbage family: obviously cabbage.  Also cauliflower, broccoli, kale &c.

I would stay away from the tubers for a container gardern(sp).  Potatoes, beets, carrots etc.  Your yeild per container is going to be very small.

Go for the "nightshades":  Tomatoes, eggplants (maybe okra?).  But understand that they are all "hot-weather" harvests and water-hungry, but need to be well drained.  Can be started as seeds/seedlings right now, but you won't get anything to eat for months...

Anything you plant now outside of Lettuce/succulents will have such a wait until harvest...  If you can afford the wait, I reccomend tomatoes/nightshades.

-p

ediot:  Gawrsh, I am useless!

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #261 on: March 31, 2020, 04:40:02 AM »
-p

ediot:  Gawrsh, I am useless!

No, you are useful, pate.  Great gardening info!  Do you think that Chine would have good luck planting an elderberry plant in a big pot with store bought planting soil?  I've had good results from planting plum pits in such pots.  There was a plum tree in my ally and after eating some of the plums, I put several pits in a pot with soil that I use for tomatoes.  One of them sprouted last year and now that thing is a good five feet high.  No blossoms this year, but I should see them next year.  It isn't the biggest pot in the world, but it should last for a number of years.  I've also had evergreen trees in pots for a lot of years before transplanting them in the ground, with no ill effects.  As you noted, Chine might be interested in starting seeds.  I just thought I'd throw the idea of growing something in a pot, out there.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #262 on: March 31, 2020, 05:28:31 AM »
Rix,

One could certainly plant, say an apple tree, in a container.  It may well thrive and be healthy for years and years, but rarely put out a flower;  and even more rarely have that flower produce an actual fruit.

I have a lemon tree that I have been tending in a container, I think it is at least five years old;  which at minimum (to my understanding) is the time frame for it to begin bearing fruit.  Granted this tree is from seed I saved from a store-bought lemon.  Out of the 16 or so seeds I got from that one lemon, maybe half sprouted.  Of that half I killed one or two, gave one of the trees to my mother who proceeded to kill that one, and now I have only one of those 16 left.  This is at least 5 years later, and none have ever produced a lemon.  I don't particularly care about the one surviving tree being able to produce fruit;  absolutely the wrong climate, it is just fun to try to keep it alive.

The thing is rapidly becoming a giant bonsai tree, I have to bring it indoors for the winter and damn near dehydrate the thing to keep it alive over the winter.  Maybe, just maybe if I am lucky I will see a flower this year;  as I understand it the general rule on a fruit tree/shrub is 5 years of undisturbed root ball will get the thing to try to put out fruit...

Same would hold for an elderberry, blueberry, raspberry, blackberry I think;  the plant won't try to reproduce if you are constantly uprooting it etc.  It "needs" to know that it is in a place that its offspring can survive before it expends that final effort...

If you just want an elderberry as a decorative plant, yeah sure:  put it in a container.  If you want actual elderberries:  put it in the ground, outside and wait 3-5 years.  The food you buy at the supermarket is generally not grown in containers...

"Hot-house" Tomatoes might be the exception to that rule, but then a tomato plant isn't perrenial(sp), tomatoes are annuals:  i.e. they as a plant last about a year and depend on the seeds from their fruit for the next years' generation of fruit bearing plants.

Tomatoes are almost a weed, I see more volunteer tomatoes in the yard than anything else.  Always let them grow, and leave un-harvested fruit to hopefully seed the next year.

If you aren't growing for food, plant anything you like in a container!  I tried cactii one year.  I like cactii, but live in a climate that they don't do well in, quite a challenge, again it was the soil composition (I think) and probably my inattention that killed them.  I started 3-4 dozen cactus seeds of various varieties, and got better than half to sprout, but most died within a week of germination, and the three or four that survived past that did not make it to a year!

If I only had 3 or 4 containers to grow food in, and a suspect non-south facing balcony on an apartment building?  I'd go with tomatoes;  most forgiving and at my latitude at this time of year I'd have enough food to last until late August before I'd expect to eat a tomato grown on my balcony.

Beets grow fastest to harvest, but you are still looking at minimum 6 weeks, and those are going to be thumb sized.  That is great for pickling, but last year's experiment in container grown beets was awful, lots of water.  Crickets ate more than I did, and I ended up throwing them away, I used a 12x24x6 container and maybe had 15 viable beets... Gah!

Squash does well for me.  I just love yellow squash;  get the "bush" variety for a container rather than the "vine" type;  if you are starting seeds...

Personally, I am doing the container garden because I don't have enough "dirt" to fill in the growing area.  I refuse to buy that much soil and am trying to home-grow my own.  Looking back to last year, I probably should not have used so much on the lawn...  hehe, the lawn is really loving it though.  I should snap a picture of this ridiculous bent-grass before the summer sets in and "kills" it all!

I have been mowing religiously every other day at 1" for the past month at least, this stuff grows 1/4" a day in places!

-p

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #263 on: April 01, 2020, 02:58:43 PM »
My pineapple plantation.  Eat your hearts out Dole Foods, Inc.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #264 on: April 01, 2020, 03:17:16 PM »
My pineapple plantation.  Eat your hearts out Dole Foods, Inc.

Now I get it! You come from Obama country. :D

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #265 on: April 01, 2020, 03:21:22 PM »
Now I get it! You come from Obama country. :D

Uh oh.  Heís eating his shorts again.

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #266 on: April 03, 2020, 05:08:26 PM »
Finally got around to taking another reference photo of the lawn.

The last photo(13MAR2020, pre-CornHoleEbola):
 [attachment=1,msg1385564]

And the lawn today(03APR2020), after mowing in the slightly freezing rain:
 [attachment=2,msg1385564]

I decided to skip entirely the St. Pate's day Bentgrass seeding and top-dressing.  Did not think it necessary, what I have down now is putting out seed-heads like crazy and sending out runners to fill in the gaps.

If I can acquire some of this "Princess 77" Bermuda in time for a late spring overseeding I will try that too.  Or put that off until next year and see how the Bermuda seed I put in last year does, I think the "Princess 77" is a little pricey.  I have also decided that I want to try Creeping Red Fescue eventually as well, but that probably won't be until next year at the earliest.

Getting really close to time to put out the tropical stuff, but not today:  was 31F!  I think this is the last hurrah of winter, the ginko tree out front is about to put out leaves and it never does that unless the last freeze danger has passed.

I just love this Bentgrass, it is freaking awesome.

-p

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #267 on: April 04, 2020, 01:23:05 AM »
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-hJlc4JDjI

Now this dog really is HUGE! Aww!

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #268 on: April 06, 2020, 12:20:48 AM »
Spent my day off working the backyard putting green, burning shit and having a few Miller High Lives.  Was fun, best part was when I was burning the green shrub trimmings smoking up the neighborhood and every fire-truck in town came blasting by.  I like to imagine that some self-quarantined morons smelt the smoke and started calling "the Man" about it.

Feel good that the firefighters had an excuse to get out of the station, I counted at least 8 fire-trucks, plus WAHmbulances and fire chief vehicles...  A few hours later, after dark I fired up the chainsaw and cut up some logs into biscuits for splitting later;  felt I had to disturb the eerie silence a bit...

I did note that the sport-bikers with the loud rice-powered engine/mufflers were out and about revving it up somewhat sporadically during the day.  They are still gay, but I appreciate the sentiment...

That is all.  Carrie Anne.

-p

Gardens, Lawns and Such...
« Reply #269 on: May 04, 2020, 08:55:23 PM »
I had hoped to get some Monaco Bermuda seed put down over the weekend, but my potting soil adventure ate up all the thyme.  I took some pictures of the soil making adventure, and another reference photo of the lawn progress:

A month ago:
 [attachment=1,msg1392550]

Yesterday:
 [attachment=2,msg1392550]

I will now attempt to stress the Bellgab/bellchan attachment system with a semi-lengthy post on my potting soil process.

I use five ingredients, mixed into three parts that are then mixed together.  Perlite, Vermiculite, Sand, Peat-moss & sifted Worm Castings.

I start by mixing equal parts Perlite, Vermiculite and Sand (this year it was 4 cubic feet of each):
 [attachment=3,msg1392550]

Next, I begin hydrating the Peat Moss;  first in a tub of water that I stir with a 4-prong garden tine then I allow it to drain in stacked 5-gallon buckets that have holes in the bottom:
 [attachment=4,msg1392550]

Then I begin the process of sifting the Worm Castings (poop) from my compost pile, this takes a few tools:
 [attachment=5,msg1392550]

Actually, that is most of the tools required for the whole process, a few 5-gallon buckets for measuring everything, a custom "Dirt Sieve" (constructed of expanded metal, and 2x6's), a flat shovel, a spade, a rake, a 4-prong garden tine and a couple of wheelbarrows.

I shovel the compost from last year into the sieve and use the garden hoe, my hands, or the dead husks of Boston Ferns to force the worm castings through the sieve.  I pick out rocks, sticks, small bits of trash, worms, grubs and my favorite the TREASURE!!!

Here's what it ends up looking like when it's sifted;
 [attachment=6,msg1392550]

The blue bucket contains the gravel that I dump in spots that need it, gravel will mess up the expanded metal if you rake too aggressively with the hoe, so it needs to get out of there.  I used to put gravel in the bottom of my filled containers to try to stop the potting mix from leaking out of the holes, this year in an attempt to keep rocks out of my compost I am using Cedar Sawdust in the bottom of my containers.  Hopefully ants do not like cedar shavings...

The other black bucket contains the trash I pick out from the compost (and trash from the yard that blows in from the damn parking lot next door AND my beer trash).

The grubs go into a pot to gently bake in the sun for awhile until I call the neighborhood birds in for a meal.  Robins love them (apogees, forgot to get a picture of the fat bastards, but it would have put my attachment count for this post too high, so oh well.  Fuck 'em)

The worms I throw into this year's compost pile, along with the sticks.  I get some huge worms out of this thing, one was at least a foot long, I swear.  I chucked Shai'hulud back into the compost before I thought to save some for a photo:
 [attachment=7,msg1392550]

Those are some big ones, I figure my compost pile has some survival value both for fishing worms and I suppose I could eat the grubs if I got real desperate for protein...

My favorite part of sifting the dirt is when I find TREASURE!!!  Apparently, the corner of the yard has been used as a garbage pit over the past hundred years.  I find old bottles, marbles, nails and all sorts of neat stuff.  This year was a jackpot:
 [attachment=8,msg1392550]

I am pretty sure the Jewel is cut glass, but it is still neat.  I think I found the cap for that perfume/medicine/booze bottle too.  It is soaking to get the dirt off so I can read the embossed writing on it...

Once all the sifting is done I measure out 5 gallons each of the Sand Mix, Peat Moss and Worm Castings and put them in a wheelbarrow for final mixing:
 [attachment=9,msg1392550]

Well, shiet, I have one more picture.  I will make another post, right after this one.

TO BE CONTINUED...

-p