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Author Topic: Gardening 2023  (Read 17177 times)
cineater
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« on: January 06, 2023, 12:50:18 PM »

And it all starts over again.  Cheesy

I already have onions, leaks and pansies under the lights we started late December.  I'm growing for plant sales.  Starting the seeds in groups to be transplanted later into their selling containers.  The onions and leeks are on their second cut back.  It makes them stronger to cut them back and keep them around 3 to 4 inches.  I'm running 14 flats already.  Could add another 3.  The new lights are working well.  So much lighter fixtures and the plants under them do much better.  I'm liking my rearranged growing room.  It's just nice back there with the lights and the radio going.

This one ornamental fringed kale has a weird germination process.  Soak the seeds for 12 hours, changing the water every 4 hours.  Then they go in the frig for 24 hours, dry to the touch and then planted on top of the soil with light.  The other, orn kale, looks like a rose on a stem,  just needs dark germination.  First time growing these.
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cineater
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« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2023, 09:36:32 PM »

My plans for what goes into each of the 12 pantry beds went over pretty well with just a few changes.  Need to redraw my lay out plans for each bed but I have to wait for the seed packets to be finalized so I can figure out what area they need.  I'm ready to go with the sign ups to adopt the beds.  I have 7 already adopted so I'm pretty confident I won't end up taking a bed.  Damn it I wanted one but really I don't have the time.  I don't think I like squashes but there are some pretty interesting looking ones and growing them vertically can look pretty cool too.

I'm treating it like it's a big demonstration.  It all goes in at one time and it all gets terminated whether it's finished or not to make room for the next display and then that all goes it.  It kills me to do that, terminate a plant.  I'm done at the end of summer but if someone wants to grow a fall crop, have at it, we have seeds.  Otherwise I'm cleaning up the mess.

I have to set up the watering and group harvest schedules.  Those poor folks who take the cherry tomato and bean beds can't harvest all that by themselves.

This is fun.  I'm a little on edge.  hihi 
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cineater
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« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2023, 02:51:25 PM »

The ground hasn't frozen here so I'm back out in the drain basin throwing out seeds.  Today I seeded American Beauty Bush.  One of my favorites.  I like how the berries circle around the stem.
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cineater
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« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2023, 04:44:25 PM »

Woohoo!  I have only 5 of the 12 pantry beds left to get adopted and I think I have somebody who wants the sweet potato bed.  I've only sent the email to a few people and I haven't put it out to the whole group.  I don't think I'm going to get a bed for myself.  Once again I'm so busy managing the work to be done I can't get to learning how to grow veggies.  It's good though, once I have the management all laid out anybody can take over and I can go back to managing the rest of the garden and put the educational programing into place.  I'll got that production line thing going in my head all the fucking time.
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« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2023, 08:43:33 AM »

The onions and leeks need cut back again.   hihi  I'm seeding up the ornamental kale today.  The rose looking one I've never seen before.  If it times out right, it's headed for the flower show.  I'm going to use it in our breast cancer planter at the hospital.  And a couple of planters right outside the plant sale.  Our members are going to freak because I know they've never seen it.  It's meant to say, oh yeah I run this place, spend your volunteer time with me, I do cool shit.  Bunches of a few different colored lettuces in our show case bed last year has everybody wanting to do that this year.  It got me two new people to take over that bed this year. 

Anyway, here's the rose looking kale.
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cineater
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« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2023, 12:39:35 PM »

Woohoo, I'm down to 3 pantry beds needing people to adopt them.  The announcement for adoptees goes out in the Monday news this week so hopefully they are all adopted by next week.  But now what do I do with plan B?  The University wants us to grow up 300 fruit trees if they get a research grant.  They would have taken 4 pantry beds for that.  We'll have to break ground for a new place for them if they get it. 

And then there's plan C, downsize that garden.  That was never going to happen under my watch.  There's a few top people that's going to disappoint.  Sure I agreed to no new gardens but that is a University research project, not a garden sponsored by us.  See the difference?  Yeah it's only on paper, we'd have a new garden.  It's baby trees.  How much work is that?  They grow like weeds only slower.  We just have to keep the deer off them.  I think plan C is going to fail and maybe morph into a whole new plan.   hihi

I think I'm about to have some fun.

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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2023, 08:36:47 PM »

The fringed ornamental kale had to be germinated in the dark like the pansies.  Today I noticed little white seedlings coming up.  Took off the black out cloth and set them to the side of the lights.  Tonight, the cotyledons are turning green as is the stem.  We had this problem with the pansies last year, we were waiting for all of the seeds to germinate and killing off the ones that came up first because they didn't get any light.  This method worked really well this year with the pansies.

I also took the rose kale out of the refrigerator today.   hihi  Glad nobody thought that was a tray of brownies.
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« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2023, 10:40:03 AM »

Get a phone message from Marsha that starts with a series of fucks.   hihi  Sounding like a chicken there sweetheart.  The Pro-Mix is on back order and they don't know when it will come in.  Lack of a growing medium can shut us down.  My fault, I reminded her to check on it.  We don't need it for a couple of weeks yet.  Calm down, the box store has 189 bails in something similar.  We only need 40.  Then again, we may be competing with all those other folks who are on back order with us.  You want to snatch it up now or just limp by on it until/hoping our regular order comes in?  We've got piles of soil, compost and leaf litter out there.  I can mix us up a growing medium real quick.  Not real sure that will work well but it's an option.

Anyway, the kales are popping up really well.  There's a warning on transplanting them.  They don't do well but they will go to the greenhouse when I do that and not into the ground so I'm still hopeful I'll have a batch of them.
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« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2023, 01:40:21 AM »

Screw it, I need to move onto other projects.  I adopted the last two pantry beds.  If I have to manage it all season I need to be in there with my folks.  I have squash.  The last time I grew that the plant was going strong and the next day completely dead!  Squash bugs.  But I'll get to play with the cattle panel as a trellis so that's fun.  And I've got Okra.  It looks disgusting.  What does that taste like?

I really want to play with those fruit trees.  And Marsh is kicking the baby Paw Paw trees out of the Orchard so I need to find a new place to grow trees.

Was over at the pot plantation today.  He was taking cuttings off his plants.  Wondered how he was keeping going if his buds didn't produce seeds.  I'm a 70's grower, seeds sucked and you went for the leaves.  He just put the leaves in the trash.  I no longer know how to grow pot.  I'm going to learn.  I have to plant sit in March.  They get fed twice a day.  Excuse me but isn't this a weed?   hihi
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« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2023, 03:21:37 PM »

Pro-mix is in!  But while we were moving it into the greenhouse, we found henbit growing.  That will give a home to aphids.  We had a big problem with that last year.  We have a big transplanting party on Saturday and the greenhouse opens up.  Watering crews in place and I have the first shift.  Always take the Sunday morning shift.  Straighten it up and get it ready for the next week.  Usually the plants have been so over watered by then, I don't do much of that.  hihi

We lost the fruit trees to a research facility in Illinois.  They are better able to keep the deer off of them.
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« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2023, 06:46:15 PM »

I took in 13 flats for transplanting and came home with 17 flats of seeds.  I'm starting broccoli, lettuce, bok choy, swiss chard, cabbage and kohlrabi.

I also walked out of there with a new pantry lead in training, the two pantry beds I took adopted by two other people and two new growers.  Cheesy  Then I had to get to work transplanting.  hihi
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cineater
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« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2023, 09:37:14 PM »

Fuck.  They walked out of the greenhouse this afternoon and discovered aphids eggs starting to hatch in the weeds in the gravel.  They are only at the stage where they crawl, mate and lay more eggs.  They won't start flying for a couple more generations unless we have a warm spring.  For now we'll pull the weeds and are going to wrap some sticky tape around the legs of the growing tables so we can stop them from crawling up.  Mulling over how we can build something around the plants to keep the flying ones out when the time comes.

This is kind of my fault.  I stopped weeding around the greenhouse few years ago because it's not my job.  I was helping them out and it turned into letting me just do it.  The stopping idea was the folks whose job it was would be forced to do it.  They didn't.  We had a minor problem two years ago and a big problem last year.  I spent significant time giving plants a bath.

Anyway, Marsha had called at midnight last night ranting about the greenhouse was not set up to receive the plants.  Also not my job or hers but my crew was going to be the first ones in there today.  We're the Sunday morning crew, we've been putting that greenhouse back together every week for years.  The plants are generally so over watered by Sunday, we have the time to straighten up what they've messed up all week.  hihi  By the time she walked in at 11, it was fully functional and set up for the week ahead.  All plants, about a 1000 of them, happy little campers.  She didn't find a thing that needed to be done.  Cheesy And then she found the aphids when she was leaving.  hihi
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« Reply #12 on: February 20, 2023, 11:54:31 PM »

Val texts us.  She's got a friend selling a greenhouse like ours real cheap.  "It will go quickly."  I see that and think I'm not going to be the first one to say hell no and offend her.  Marsha politely replies and side steps, the three of us can't fit it on our personal property.  Val comes back with, for the Demo Gardens.  "It will go quickly."   Joe replies, "I was thinking that she was joking."  Yeah, that's going to upset her.  I'm just going to keep pretending I'm dead.  hihi

All the cool season crops have come up and are headed for the greenhouse tomorrow.  Except the romaine, it's coming up slow.  I'm slated for 12 flats of annuals to come home with me Wednesday.

They did some weird cold stratification with the Sneeze Weed.  They made log ice cubes, put the logs on top of the soil and the seeds on top of the log, let it melt into place.  Left some really rough soil.  I was wondering who seeded that up or if the cat had got into it.  Nothing is happening yet.  If they didn't do it this way, the seeds would have had to been in the refrigerator for 3 months.
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« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2023, 10:56:40 PM »

First pantry team meeting tomorrow.  I can already tell by the questions folks were only half listening if that.  We're going to pull it together.  Marsha is already telling me where we are short in our greenhouse order.  Apparently we had trouble getting the lettuce to come up or whoever took it home killed it or haven't brought it in yet.  It's okay, that can be direct sowed.  Just means I'll have more to water.  I was trying to avoid that.  And the greenhouse is too busy to issue the plants when the group is there so everybody is coming home with me to get harden off.  Hope they fit in the car on one trip.

In the mean time, no aphids on the pansies.  Three weeks until they are out of there.
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« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2023, 10:22:32 PM »

They say the meeting went well.  We'll see if we're all on the same page as this rolls out.  It's really not that complicated, just get the plants in the ground and the rest will fall in place. 

My spring ephemerals are coming up every where.  Nice to see they have multiplied.  All those annual, weed, ground covers can stay.  It's food for the early pollinators and green mulch.  I need to be out there pruning the crepe myrtle and mowing down the liriope later in the month.  The ornamental kale is taking off in the greenhouse.  They need to be a more substantial plant before they go into containers but they can go in ground in the middle of the month.  New plant for me and it's working out.
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« Reply #15 on: March 07, 2023, 12:04:46 AM »

I'm down to 9 beds at the gardens from 11 but I picked up pantry team management.  Finished up spring clean up at the garden and at home.  Basically it was some pruning and running the lawn mower over everything.  Couldn't be easier.

Somebody brought in the Flirty Skirt pansies from home cover in aphids!  They were in the greenhouse for a few hours before getting tossed outside.  Marsha put onion clippings all over them hoping the aphids will abandon the pansies and go for other plants outside.

I fucked up with the ornamental kale.  The one that looks like a rose is actually a summer kale.  There goes my design using them.  And as it turns out there is leaves all the way up the stem.  The stem had the leaves cut off.  They are actually a three foot towering plant.  I'm thinking just at the edge of the leaves on the elephant ears.  Maybe but I'm also thinking they might look better with a skinnier, grassy plant to off set the tower.  They could either be the thrill or the fill but I still need a spill.  The elephant ear bed is more of a wall of very tall plants.
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cineater
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« Reply #16 on: March 08, 2023, 01:12:37 AM »

There is a world onion crisis.  https://www.firstpost.com/explainers/onion-shortage-philippines-turkey-kazakhstan-morrocco-world-food-crisis-inflation-12201522.html
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« Reply #17 on: March 08, 2023, 10:19:10 PM »

What is with the lettuce this year?  We got poor germination in the first round, reseeded, they came home with me and I'm not getting very good results.  Normally I have more lettuce then I need.  Tom Thumb is the only one that took off.  We get our seeds from several companies so they can't all be bad seed.
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« Reply #18 on: March 11, 2023, 03:50:16 PM »

Oh Greg.   hihi  He mistakenly walked in to my leads meeting this morning as a bed lead, didn't have to be there, and walked out a garden lead.  He's a newbie and does not have my number yet.  The rest of them know, you talk to her and if she's not putting you to work now, she's making plans for you later.  He's my new turf lead.  And, I got him and the new pantry garden lead with the same thing, leave those weeds alone.  It's a shocker when I challenge them on picture perfect vs what's good for the environment.  When I ask why they are getting rid of weeds and come back with all the reasons why they stay.

First quarterly leads meeting this morning.  Went well.  Went two hours.  Would have went an hour if a few people would just let me do it and stop trying to run my meeting!  I hate that, the rest of the team hates that but if you don't let them have their time to put in their 2 cents they just keep trying to get it.  Anyway, I walked out fully staffed, staying under budget and a team ready to go.
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« Reply #19 on: March 12, 2023, 07:53:48 AM »

We have to get rid of the snow before I can think about flowers. lol about 10 iches this week. Birds are all coming back and thinking what the fuck? lol
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