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Fusion_power 2008-03-27 01:26

Springtime and Gardening
 
I am an ardent gardener growing mainly fruits and veggies. I have a decent sized greenhouse with about 20,000 tomato plants growing at present. I'm curious how many of the eccentric personalities here also enjoy gardening.


[URL="http://www.selectedplants.com/gardenphotos/seedlings1.jpg"]http://www.selectedplants.com/gardenphotos/seedlings1.jpg[/URL]
[URL="http://www.selectedplants.com/gardenphotos/seedlings2.jpg"]http://www.selectedplants.com/gardenphotos/seedlings2.jpg[/URL]
[URL="http://www.selectedplants.com/gardenphotos/seedlings3.jpg"]http://www.selectedplants.com/gardenphotos/seedlings3.jpg[/URL]


DarJones

bsquared 2008-03-27 04:39

I keep a garden along with my father-in-law, but at not nearly the scale as your greenhouse. First planting is still a month away here in MN, right about the same time as our rhubarb will be ready to harvest (we have several large plants). We typically grow veggies: carrots, beans, pea pods, tomatoes, corn, potatoes, peppers and beets. And there are some raspberry bushes too - my favorite!

xilman 2008-03-27 08:07

I don't grow particularly much edible vegetation, apart from an extensive herb bed and one each of a damson, cherry, apple and hazlenut tree. I specialize in bamboos, grasses and related plants (sedges, reeds, rushes, etc). There's a moderate fern bed down the bottom of the garden.

Quite a lot of my plants live indoors over winter --- aloes, agave (apart from the Agave americana which is tough enough to survive the weather), a few cacti, and sundry other semi-tender plants.


Paul

S78496 2008-03-28 03:18

I am also in Minnesota, and the gardens are family projects with me, my wife and as many of our five children as want to get involved - usually about three of them, actively. Vegetables typically raised are radishes, leaf lettuce, spinach, carrots, peas, green beans, tomatoes, cucumbers, pumpkins, Buttercup squash zucchini squash and sunflowers. OK, so sunflowers aren't really vegetables, but they are in our vegetable garden area. We've succeeded with Indian corn and okra, too, in years past. We've got an enlarging mint patch (spearmint & peppermint) and chives and oregano. Plus rhubarb which is such a refreshing reminder that spring is truly here, that the seasons really have turned. We have a rapidly expanding chokecherry thicket, and two apple trees as well. We're starting a honeybee colony in a few weeks; we are eager to witness the effect of having that many honeybees in such close proximity to our (and our neighbor's) gardens.

Brian

ixfd64 2008-03-28 06:17

My mother grows organic vegetables in her garden! Unfortunately, the squirrels love to dig her garden up. :(

bsquared 2008-03-28 12:56

[quote=ixfd64;130106]My mother grows organic vegetables in her garden! Unfortunately, the squirrels love to dig her garden up. :([/quote]

For us, deer are the most damaging. Everything but the rhubarb is inside a 8' fence, so they aren't really a problem, but they can be a real nuisance if gardens aren't protected this way.

I forgot to list one of my favorite veggies, asparagas. We've also grown squash and cucumbers in the past, but these tend to take up so much area that we don't grow them often anymore.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-05-17 14:58

Yes, there [i]is[/i] an existing thread on gardening! Good grief, the last post to it was 13 years ago! High time to revive it. I will expound on the subject of weeds, which are plants growing where the landowner doesn't want them to grow.

I've taken up gardening in recent years, and have found that the most work is in controlling weeds. Annual weeds are a perennial challenge. There's an old saying, "One year's seeding makes seven years weeding." Annual weeds only reappear in subsequent years because of seeds in the ground, but it may take many years to draw down the "seed bank" left by a stand of annual weeds allowed to go to seed, especially if it has occurred in a given spot for more than one year. In controlling annual weeds, thoroughness in weeding is the whole ball game. I may not take a lot of years to being a given species under control to the extent where you spend more time looking for it than removing it. Unfortunately, some annual weeds have seeds remain viable for decades.

Then there are perennial weeds. These may be either herbaceous or woody. Both types have some really tough customers. One of the toughest herbaceous perennial weeds I've dealt with is "field bindweed," [i]Convolvulus arvensis[/i]. It spreads by underground runners, and its roots can go very deep. As with any green plant, persistently and frequently removing any part above ground (with as much root as you can get out) will eventually kill it, but with this plant this method can take years. I have exterminated small stands by unwinding the stuff from whatever desirable plants it's climbing on, putting plastic under it, temporarily protecting the desirable plants with plastic, thoroughly painting the bindweed with Roundup, mixed at [i]double[/i] the recommended strength, waiting for it to dry, then taking away the plastic.

Canada thistle ([i]Cirsium arvense[/i]) is troublesome because it is spiny and spreads into colonies with underground runners, but is much less hard to kill.

Woody plants which have become impossible to pull or impractical to dig out can be sawed or lopped to a short stump. Thoroughly painting the stump with concentrated brush killer (>= 8% triclopyr) or 50% glyphosate, and covering it with plastic (I use pieces of used grocery store plastic bags secured with thin string like sausage twine) to protect curious animals (brush killer is nasty stuff) and prevent the poison from being washed off by rain before it can do its healing work is usually quite effective. So far, the most persistent adversary I have faced (and am still battling) is trumpetcreeper, [i]Campsis radicans[/i]. I am in the third year of battling stands of this plant at my sister's place, using the cut-and-poison method. I have had some success - some stands seem to have been exterminated - but not all. This year, when new shoots have appeared, I have dug around them. I was appalled to find living underground stumps and rootstock much thicker than the above-ground stumps I had cut and poisoned in previous years, and which had died. I dug down 6 inches (these things are in tight quarters, hemmed in by desirable plants), thoroughly painted what I had exposed with concentrated brush killer, covered it with plastic, and reburied it. And so far, this is the toughest weed I have battled.

kriesel 2021-05-17 17:39

For difficult weeds, such as large thistles, an uncle used to go further, and INJECT herbicide with a syringe into the pith of the stalk.
Rhizomes or root-propagating species seem to be the worst to eradicate. Some grow in tall groves, such as sumac or stinging nettles, shading out the previous competition.
Others are trees, such as locust, which is also a legume, fixing nitrogen by aid of bacteria, so prospering where other plants lack nitrogen.
Black locust are particularly bad, since they're somewhat toxic to humans and ungulants (horses, domesticated cattle, some wildlife).
And some honey locust varieties that grow wild produce specialized branches with side "twigs" of up to 4" oriented-fiber sharp thorns. [URL]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honey_locust#/media/File:HoneyLocustThorn.JPG[/URL] (allegedly evolved as a defense against Pleistocene megafauna.) Repeated application of chain saws, brush mowers, and herbicides may work.
Herbicides diluted per package instructions may produce a reaction similar to irrigating with water.
Some farmers recommend making multiple axe-cuts in the top stump face to promote soaking-in of undiluted herbicide.
Lengthy soaking a stump in diesel fuel or furnace oil followed by ignition is said to work well too. (Although not to be considered during droughts;
underground roots may burn for days in dry sandy soil, and ignite nearby structures.)
Locust makes excellent firewood, better than oak. The wikipedia article claims use of the thorns as NAILS.

Walnut is known for emitting juglone from its roots, even after it's killed.
It makes an area unfit for juglone-sensitive species continuing for several years after removal of the walnut tree. (Raspberries as I recall are sensitive.)
Walnut saplings are very hardy, and the saw or lopper will need to make regular visits. If they're small enough, removal whole is best.
Walnuts are enthusiastically spread by squirrels planting nuts in the shell, taken from on or beneath existing walnut trees in the neighborhood.

For the more common and easily controlled garden weeds, a neighbor recommends smothering weeds from the start by newspaper weighted with compost.
This would not work so well on some I see in my walks around the neighborhood. Don't know the species, but it sends up shoots through the asphalt paved town road surface, pushing up small chunks of asphalt out of its way or breaking the pavement near its edge. The road crew retaliates by mowing the roadside wider.

Long ago, I had a home in Madison WI, and along the back fence raspberries grew. Adjacent neighbors also had them. After several years, the neighbors on the other side of the fence gave up on their back-fence flower garden that was constantly being invaded by raspberries both above ground and below, from 3 adjacent lots.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-05-17 19:26

[QUOTE=kriesel;578593]For difficult weeds, such as large thistles, an uncle used to go further, and INJECT herbicide with a syringe into the pith of the stalk.
<snip>[/quote]
Injecting herbicide is a useful method. It reduces the risk to other plants, especially with glyphosate, which is effectively sequestered by clay particles in soil.

Concentrated brush killer takes care of most small woody stumps. Having fresh cuts to absorb it does help. One exception is Asiatic Bush Honeysuckle. Patients of this species with stumps less than an inch or so in diameter show alarming signs of recovery after treatment with brush killer, and need additional sedation. Glyphosate 50% concentrate works better on those. Brush killer works fine on larger Asiatic Bush Honeysuckle stumps.

[quote]Walnut is known for emitting juglone from its roots, even after it's killed.
It makes an area unfit for juglone-sensitive species continuing for several years after removal of the walnut tree. (Raspberries as I recall are sensitive.)
Walnut saplings are very hardy, and the saw or lopper will need to make regular visits. If they're small enough, removal whole is best.
Walnuts are enthusiastically spread by squirrels planting nuts in the shell, taken from on or beneath existing walnut trees in the neighborhood.[/quote]Juglone is indeed toxic to some plants. Root contact is the principal means of poisoning. And black walnut roots spread far and wide. Juglone can also be leached into the soil from fallen leaves or other litter. It does break down in soil, but it takes months even in good soil with lots of organic matter.

Anything black walnut will kill tomato plants dead. It affects other plants in the nightshade family (including potatoes, peppers, and eggplants), asparagus, rhubarb, and many ornamentals. I've read it also affects apples. This time of year I have to patrol my gardens for black walnuts sprouting from nuts buried by squirrels. New plants can be completely dug out fairly easily. Larger saplings should be dug out to a foot or 18 inches down.

[quote]For the more common and easily controlled garden weeds, a neighbor recommends smothering weeds from the start by newspaper weighted with compost.[/quote]Covering is a good way to kill low-growing (or mowed or scraped) weeds in open areas. In gardens, mulching the beds discourages many weeds, as well as moderating soil temperature and conserving moisture.[quote]This would not work so well on some I see in my walks around the neighborhood. Don't know the species, but it sends up shoots through the asphalt paved town road surface, pushing up small chunks of asphalt out of its way or breaking the pavement near its edge. The road crew retaliates by mowing the roadside wider.[/QUOTE]
If you can describe the plant, I might take a stab at identifying it.

xilman 2021-05-18 19:01

As reported in another thread, one of my decorative plants is now to be grown at least in part as food.

Like asparagus, home-grown P. violascens is a rare spring delicacy.

MooMoo2 2021-05-19 05:11

5 Attachment(s)
Sometimes (maybe more often than not?) cost != quality.

Out of all the plants that my mom and I bought over the years, the ones that did the best were the ones that we acquired cheaply and had low expectations for.

- We bought a $10 orchid from Whole Foods, which had 7 flowers and one bud at the time of purchase. It had 9 flowers the following year, then 17 the year after that, and finally 22 flowers the next year.
- We bought an $11-$12 tree rose in ~2007 from Wal-Mart, which looked like a stick that was attached to a ball of roots. I thought that it wouldn't survive, but it ended up growing to be quite large and currently has a whole bunch of big roses on it.
- We bought maybe five or so ~$4-$5 geraniums from Home Depot, which came in small pots. They ended up spreading out and covering a large portion of the garden.
- We ordered a ~$4 blue moon rose online in ~2007. When it arrived in the mail, it looked like a small assortment of sharp twigs with no leaves and barely any roots. Like the tree rose, I didn't think that it would survive. It's still alive today and has some nice flowers, though none of them are blue.

xilman 2021-05-19 07:46

[QUOTE=MooMoo2;578690]Sometimes (maybe more often than not?) cost != quality.[/QUOTE]Often cost is an indication of the difficulty of propagation.

That is why rampantly spreading bamboos tend to be much cheaper than slowly growing clump-forming bamboos. The latter have to be grown on for years before they can be split up to form new clumps. Care and storage costs money.

It is also why [I]Araucaria araucana[/I] trees are much more expensive than [I]Cupressus × leylandii[/I].

Dr Sardonicus 2021-05-22 12:02

[QUOTE=MooMoo2;578690]Sometimes (maybe more often than not?) cost != quality.

Out of all the plants that my mom and I bought over the years, the ones that did the best were the ones that we acquired cheaply and had low expectations for.
<snip>[/QUOTE]Having low expectations probably enhances the enjoyment when the plant thrives.

Last year, I bought a number of prairie plants, including two specimens of [i]Dalea purpurea[/i], AKA purple prairie clover. The prairie clover plants were tiny. I set the little square plastic containers down and started to dig where I wanted to plant it. I accidently knocked one of the pots over, and much to my surprise and horror, instead of the roots being potbound as they are with most such plants, the root system wasn't much bigger than the above-ground part. The poor little thing was lying on the ground, roots not even half an inch long, clinging to a tiny amount of potting soil, the rest of the soil still in the container. The other prairie clover plant was the same way. I figured they were both goners, but I planted them anyway.

Amazingly, they both survived, and later in the season actually grew to respectable size. They sprang back up this year, and are doing very well.

xilman 2021-05-22 14:11

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;578862] I accidently knocked one of the pots over, and much to my surprise and horror, instead of the roots being potbound as they are with most such plants, the root system wasn't much bigger than the above-ground part.[/QUOTE]When I buy plants for planting out I always try to pick up the pot and see whether roots are coming out the bottom. Quite often I will buy a plant with better roots over one with better tops. It's the roots that suffer from transplanting; the tops will generally grow back much more easily.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-05-22 15:48

[QUOTE=xilman;578865]When I buy plants for planting out I always try to pick up the pot and see whether roots are coming out the bottom. Quite often I will buy a plant with better roots over one with better tops. It's the roots that suffer from transplanting; the tops will generally grow back much more easily.[/QUOTE]Not possible in this case. I bought the plants from a volunteer organization devoted to restoring and maintainng natural areas. Due to COVID restrictions, it was order in advance, pick up plants later. In one, possibly two cases I had ordered two different species of the same genus, but got two of the same species. [i]C'est la vie![/i]

But in the case of the Prairie Clover, all's well that ends well!

When I transplant I water the plant in the container before removing it. I have sometimes used a root stimulator (vitamin B-1 solution) to reduce transplant shock.

Meanwhile, one of the prairie plants I got the year before last has thrived beyond my wildest imaginings. I got a single specimen of Common Milkweed, [i]Asclepias syriaca[/i], and planted it in one of my front yard garden beds. It grew a bit that year. Last year, it bloomed and, as hoped, attracted Monarch butterflies. And it spread a bit, which it does by sending horizontal underground runners around a foot deep.

This year, it has spread out of control. From next to my steps, it has gone under my porch and come up outside the south end. It has gone under my sidewalk and come up in the other garden bed. I don't want to put in an underground barrier (it's tight quarters for digging) so I'm going to remove it from that location. I'll dig out and give away as much as I can, and ruthlessly poison the rest.

I already transplanted some to my back yard last year, and more this year. It has plenty of room to spread back there, and the heavy clay soil there is keeping it in check.

I've also got another native milkweed, Butterfly Weed, [i]Asclepias tuberosa[/i], in my front garden. It is a good garden plant. Last year it had at least one Monarch caterpillar on it.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-05-24 23:40

Taking it to the next level...
 
2 Attachment(s)
That would be "down!" I was continuing my efforts against the unwanted trumpetcreeper ([i]Campsis radicans[/i]), and it occurred to me I could show what a formidable foe I was battling.

Last year and the year before, I contented myself with sawing or lopping stems to short stumps, and treating the stumps with either glyphosate (20 - 50%) or concentrated brush killer (triclopyr 8.8%). Some stands did expire, but new shoots appeared this year. As mentioned earlier, I have taken to digging, trimming, treating exposed rootstock with concentrated brush killer, covering it with plastic, and reburying it.

The rootstock in the pictures is about as big around as a man's thumb. The underground reserves of these specimens are amazing. One wonders how long they've been growing. The practical answer is, "Too long!"

Nick 2021-10-22 11:20

The [I]Amorphophallus decus-silvae [/I]in our Hortus Botanicus in Leiden is in bloom!
It is thought to be only the 3rd time that this has ever happened in Europe.
Dutch press release: [URL]https://www.universiteitleiden.nl/nieuws/2021/10/bijzondere-penisplant-van-hortus-gaat-bloeien[/URL]

greenskull 2021-10-22 11:29

[QUOTE=Nick;591336]The [I]Amorphophallus decus-silvae [/I]in our Hortus Botanicus in Leiden is in bloom![/QUOTE]
A friend of mine grew this plant at home. Sometimes it bloomed. The aroma of this plant resembled dead meat. It was so intense that even the neighbors complained about the bad smell.

I love exotic plants and flowers, and to be honest, I also thought about getting one. But my friend said - no way.

MattcAnderson 2021-10-23 07:23

I live in Oregon. We have a snapdragon plant that has bright pink petals when in bloom. It is very pretty. My wife and I also have a food garden. I have made applesauce two years in a row now. We also have more blueberries than we can eat. Our cherry tree only produces a few cherries per year. I even planned a rose bush in our back yard.

Cheers
Matt

Dr Sardonicus 2021-11-02 13:29

This year's pepper harvest is over. This morning, my outdoor thermometer was reading around 27 degrees F (-2.8 C). Yesterday, I picked as many unblemished orange and green Tabasco peppers as I could fit into a pint jar, and used them to make "Peppa' Sauce," with a recipe that can be found at "Our Daily Brine" [url=https://ourdailybrine.com/southern-pepper-sauce-recipe/]here[/url].

The day before yesterday, I did the same with most of the last harvest of the red, ripe Tabasco peppers. The remainder of that harvest went through a dehydrator, and is currently sitting in a small jar with a dessicator pack for further drying, awaiting its fate of being ground to powder.

I smoked a previous harvest of red, ripe Tabasco peppers with applewood before dehydration, and have already ground it to powder.

Seeding Tabasco peppers is impracticable because they're so small, and the pulp clings to the seeds. So they got used whole, seeds, veins, and all. I rate the heat level of the Tabasco pepper powder at "[i]El Scorcho![/i]"

Some midseason harvests of red, ripe Anaheims and purplish-brown, ripe Poblanos were also smoked, dried, and pulverized (I used Pecan wood for those). The Anaheims were disappointingly mild this year, but one benefit is, the smoked Anaheim powder is very similar to smoked paprika!

Most of the Anaheims and Poblanos were picked green, fire-roasted, peeled, seeded, and frozen during the growing season, to await the chile pot.

I also had Habaneros. I seeded [and deveined] them (using nitrile exam gloves and a small scissors). Some got farmed out to be made into Habanero jam. It looks sort of like orange marmalade, but it doesn't taste like it, though Habaneros do have a citrusy aroma and flavor. The seeding cut down the heat level quite a bit, but it does pack a punch.

Most of my Habaneros got seeded, applewood smoked, dehydrated, and ground to powder. I didn't rate the heat level, but it is quite hot. If I hadn't seeded the peppers, it would have been a lot hotter!

kriesel 2021-11-02 16:09

Just picked in the past 3 days several gallons of green tomatoes to strip the plants before yesterday's forecast freeze could damage them. Not sure what I'll do with them all. Removed most bean plants, all muskmelon vines, and both tomato plants. Raspberries' second round production has been winding down; probably the last picking of the year will be today. A few tiny (yellow and orange when ripe) peppers were missed when I picked unripe dark green ahead of the freeze forecast. (Mild bell peppers for a German palate.)

Potatoes have already been dug, but there are some carrots to dig yet before the ground freezes. Onions were dormant and stored long ago, and corn is already consumed. Freezer is already pretty full of raspberries, beans, tomatoes and beets.
One (or more?) of the neighborhood squirrels was a frequent visitor, hollowing out melons, eating the seeds, costing at least 1/3 of melon production. Melon seeds came from one I bought at the store in spring, so I certainly got my money's worth from that one. I have ~a dozen small melons in the fridge, 1 or 2 servings each. Still have some radishes left in the fridge from early summer, but lettuce is long gone, as are peas. Had more grapes than the birds, bugs and I could handle, and gave away gallons to relatives. It smelled like grape juice and wine beneath the canopy, and the ground had a bluish hue from all the fallen grapes.

It's been interesting to manage storage space this year to keep barely ahead of the production.
Much more productive than the previous 2 years. Emptying 1 of my 5 compost bins onto the garden this spring seems to have paid off. Will likely do the same next spring before repositioning the large dual bin for easier future access. Each half of a dual bin is 4'x4'x4.5' (~1.2 x 1.2 x 1.4 m) The other dual is now beyond full of grass, leaves, and vines. A smaller bin gets kitchen scraps, and apples not suitable for human consumption from the 2 remaining fruit trees.
It's possible that opening the sky up more by removal in March of some emerald-ash-borer-afflicted trees helped the garden too.

Next spring I may have some early lettuce, since many lettuce plants were allowed to bolt and go to seed. (Couldn't keep up with them all.)

One year I replanted spinach late, and it was too small for harvest as the freeze neared, so I made a soft tent greenhouse from clear plastic sheet with tomato cages for support. Edges of the plastic were weighted down with garden soil. Snow weight crushed the tomato cages, but the next April before even asparagus emergence, I had the best sweetest spinach ever.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-11-02 19:34

[QUOTE=kriesel;592295]Just picked in the past 3 days several gallons of green tomatoes to strip the plants before yesterday's forecast freeze could damage them. Not sure what I'll do with them all.
<snip>[/quote]If canning is an option, green tomato relish is one possibility. For such a large amount, the only alternative to canning that comes to mind is freezing (requires some prepping). A few could be used for fried green tomatoes and/or green tomato pie.
[quote]Emptying 1 of my 5 compost bins onto the garden this spring seems to have paid off.
<snip>
It's possible that opening the sky up more by removal in March of some emerald-ash-borer-afflicted trees helped the garden too.
<snip>[/QUOTE]Compost and more sun surely helped the vegetables grow.

Good luck next year!

kriesel 2021-11-02 20:10

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;592307]If canning is an option, green tomato relish is one possibility. For such a large amount, the only alternative to canning that comes to mind is freezing (requires some prepping). A few could be used for fried green tomatoes and/or green tomato pie.
Compost and more sun surely helped the vegetables grow.

Good luck next year![/QUOTE]Gave all my canning supplies away this year. So glad I did not plant the usual [B]3[/B] tomato plants! Maybe some salsa or spaghetti sauce. (Try making spaghetti with double tomatoes and double spices sometime.) Refrigerate half the pails to stagger the ripening.

xilman 2021-11-08 19:14

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;592283]This year's pepper harvest is over. This morning, my outdoor thermometer was reading around 27 degrees F (-2.8 C).[/QUOTE]Tbanks for the reminder. I really must dig up the chilli plants and bring them indoors for the winter.

Not long finished eating my signature dish: peperoncino (a blend of 5 varieties), aglio, olio & spaghetti and am now enjoying the afterburn.

Not sure whether I have posted the recipe here. Probably.

Nick 2021-11-08 21:22

[QUOTE=xilman;592729]Not sure whether I have posted the recipe here. Probably.[/QUOTE]
You said we could ask you for it 11 years ago, but that was in the "What is offensive language?" thread, so nobody dared...
[URL]https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=241676&postcount=130[/URL]

masser 2021-11-08 21:30

[QUOTE=xilman;592729]Tbanks for the reminder. I really must dig up the chilli plants and bring them indoors for the winter.

Not long finished eating my signature dish: peperoncino (a blend of 5 varieties), aglio, olio & spaghetti and am now enjoying the afterburn.

Not sure whether I have posted the recipe here. Probably.[/QUOTE]

At least share the 5 varieties of chili.

Dr Sardonicus 2021-11-08 21:33

[QUOTE=xilman;592729]Tbanks for the reminder. I really must dig up the chilli plants and bring them indoors for the winter.[/quote]I hope they do well!

[quote]Not long finished eating my signature dish: peperoncino (a blend of 5 varieties), aglio, olio & spaghetti and am now enjoying the afterburn.

Not sure whether I have posted the recipe here. Probably.[/QUOTE]Not posted AFAICT.

Mentioned in the [url=https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=445505&postcount=1]OP to the Recipes thread[/url], also in [url=https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=542969&postcount=210]this post[/url], in which you correctly recollected having posted your [url=https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=466594&postcount=18]Chilli con coction[/url] recipe.

xilman 2021-11-09 10:09

[QUOTE=masser;592735]At least share the 5 varieties of chili.[/QUOTE]It varies from dish to dish. Last night had a Scotch bonnet, a Jalapeño, two Thai finger chillies, two orange and one yellow fruit of unknown type but the plants are compact and the fruits similar in shape and heat to Jalapeños, though only half the length; they are generally grown for decorative rather than culinary purposes.

Recipe to follow.

xilman 2021-11-09 18:16

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;592737]I hope they do well!

Not posted AFAICT.

Mentioned in the [url=https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=445505&postcount=1]OP to the Recipes thread[/url], also in [url=https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=542969&postcount=210]this post[/url], in which you correctly recollected having posted your [url=https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=466594&postcount=18]Chilli con coction[/url] recipe.[/QUOTE]

Ok, here you go.

[url]https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=592809&postcount=38[/url]

Dr Sardonicus 2022-03-09 14:14

Spring is almost here. Mr. Sun has been climbing higher in the sky. We have been gaining daylight at both ends. We've already had a couple of warm days. Spring cleanup of the gardens is pretty much done. Daylight Saving time begins Sunday. Spring ahead. Lose an hour of sleep.

Last year I acquired some tulips and planted them in my front garden. Their first leaves have poked up. Two of them got eaten down to the ground by rabbits. I put an enclosure around the tulips.

My other bulb plants are more or less toxic, and the rabbits generally leave them alone. But sometimes they snip off a bunch of leaves - nice clean cuts at about a 45 degree angle - and leave the leaves lying on the ground.

I have found a new home for some of the Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) I am going to have to remove from my front garden. The soil in my front yard is rich and loose. I call it "PJB soil," meaning "Plant 'em and jump back!" Common Milkweed spreads by underground runners (which I did not know when I got it), and what started as single specimen is now threatening to take over my whole front yard! I have dug some of it out and transplanted it to my back yard. (A length of rootstock broke off while I was doing that. I buried it. It sent shoots up at both ends!) The heavy clay soil in my back yard keeps the spreading in check. I also gave some away last year. Recently I met a man living nearby who wants some. Whatever of it remains in my front yard, I will have to poison.

The guy who wants the milkweed mentioned that he had a packet of potato seeds, but he didn't know what kind. I told him to send me a picture of the packet. It was in Russian! I was able to translate enough of the words to learn that they are Empress potatoes, an early-ripening variety developed in Russia. There is plenty of information online about them. Apparently you have to plant them from seed, and the germination and seedling development are rather iffy.

I'm not much of a vegetable gardener, though I do grow chile peppers. I have been acquiring and growing native plants, plus some closely-related flowers. My Prairie Columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) is well-established and up. Its red flowers in late April and May will be a bonanza for the hummingbirds.

I had an idea about the "verge" - the grassy area between the sidewalk and the street. The lawn there is really crappy. The previous owner's idea of lawn care was scalping it every couple of weeks or so. Trying to make it look like a lawn has been a struggle. Starting around this time of year, it seems like my lawn has a "weed of the week" club. Just as I clear it of or two species, new ones show up. And then, I read [url=https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=600930&postcount=100]this post[/url], which has a link to a video of a Ukrainian woman telling Russian soldiers to put sunflower seeds in their pockets, so they will grow when they all "lie down." I thought, "Why sunflowers?" So I looked it up, and, lo and behold, the sunflower is the national flower of Ukraine. Ukraine has accounted for 18% of the world's sunflower seed oil. So this year, I plan to put some sunflowers in the verge.

But planting will have to wait. Old Man Winter isn't going away just yet. We're due for a couple of nights with lows in the teens F (around -10 C). Some early flowers are already blooming (Common snowdrops, Galanthus nivalis). I'll try to scrounge up some dead leaves to protect them and some of my early green shoots from the worst of the cold. And frosts the second week of May are not uncommon.

xilman 2022-03-09 17:31

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;601375]Spring is almost here.[/QUOTE]Bought your stocks of poisons yet?

chalsall 2022-03-09 23:29

[QUOTE=xilman;601383]Bought your stocks of poisons yet?[/QUOTE]

Pre- or post-emergent? Selective and/or systemic?

:smile:

xilman 2022-03-10 14:50

[QUOTE=chalsall;601410]Pre- or post-emergent? Selective and/or systemic?

:smile:[/QUOTE]I was thinking more along the lines of strychnine and cyanide.

rogue 2022-03-10 15:46

Personally I'm more into fruiting trees and shrubs. My wife does the gardening. I have had a difficult time getting black mulberry to grow here. I'm in zone 5, so it should survive the winters, but it has never done much. One tree died a couple of years ago, but never grew above 4 feet in height. I have two now. I'll know in May if they survived. White mulberry is invasive, so I won't touch it.

I have also tried high bush blueberries, but they don't like my soil either. I know that both of these like very acidic soil, but the soil here is not that acidic. Even though I've added stuff to bring up the acid level in the soil, that hasn't helped.

Although we have had good luck with red raspberries and thornless blackberries, black raspberries have been a challenge. They are growing along the tree line, but not spreading much. We forage for them in July in public parks.

I would like to plant a black walnut, but my wife is strongly against that because they drop a lot of sap. Fortunately there are many places to pick up black walnuts in fall.

Dr Sardonicus 2022-03-11 13:46

[QUOTE=rogue;601444]<snip>
I would like to plant a black walnut, but my wife is strongly against that because they drop a lot of sap. Fortunately there are many places to pick up black walnuts in fall.[/QUOTE]Black walnut trees ([i]Juglans nigra[/i]) also drop a lot of black walnuts some years; it seems about every other year. They can practically carpet the ground.

For those not familiar, black walnuts have a [i]very[/i] thick green outer hull that makes them about the size of tennis balls, and heavy enough that you do NOT want to park underneath a black walnut tree when the nuts are dropping, because the impact on a car windshield can require its replacement. You also probably don't want to hit fallen black walnuts with a power mower. Stepping on a black walnut can lead to a sprained ankle, which I learned the hard way.

The nuts are edible. Running them over with a car will loosen the outer hulls, exposing the inner hull, which is a little smaller than the familiar English walnut, and - guess what - black. The black dye in black walnuts will stain your skin, and will not wash away. Cracking them without breaking the meats into small pieces is an art.

Black walnut meats do not taste like English walnuts. They have an strong aromatic flavor which I would describe as "banana-like." The most delicious oatmeal cookies I ever ate had pieces of black walnut in them.

Black walnut trees also wage chemical warfare on some kinds of plants. The plant exudes a substance called juglone, which is death to tomato plants, generally not good for plants in the Nightshade family, and also said to kill apple trees.

Dr Sardonicus 2022-03-20 13:57

The Spring (Vernal) Equinox will be in a little less than two hours!

I have had Snowdrops and Crocuses blooming. Some of my Crocuses were eaten by rabbits.

Hyacinths have buds. Narcissuses (Narcissi), Tulips up but nowhere near blooming. Some young Tulip shoots were mowed down by rabbits. The tulips are now in an enclosure, and the mowed-down ones are coming back strong. (The tulips were a gift from a neighbor who didn't know what they were because the nearby trees had grown so much they weren't getting enough sun, so they never bloomed. They thought they were Mother-in-law's tongue! Daffodils are blooming in the neighborhood.

Violets are coming up. Peonies are coming up.

Hyacinth, Daffodil, and Narcissus are all fairly toxic, so rabbits won't eat them. One of my hyacinths got nibbled a little bit last year, and also last year the rabbits snipped a bunch of leaves of my neighbor's Daffodils. Clean cuts at about a 45 degree angle, leaves left in a pile.

In the weed department, Dandelions are up. Multiple varieties of Chickweed; Creeping Charlie; and Mock Strawberry are growing well. Some weedy mustards are up. Can't identify them for sure yet. Shepherd's Purse and some kind of Peppergrass are endemic. I have found Creeping Veronica and Whitlow Grass (a very small weedy mustard) in bloom.

[b]EDIT:[/b] I forgot to mention, on Wednesday I saw a butterfly for the first time this year - an Eastern Comma ([i]Polygonia comma[/i]).

Dr Sardonicus 2022-05-22 13:51

After mainly cloudy, dreary, chilly weather more like late Winter than early to mid-Spring lasting through the first week of May, we went straight to Summer - temperatures in the upper 80's to over 90 F (low 30's C).

Plants grew explosively. Including, of course, weeds. But during the hot weather it stayed fairly dry. I was having to water newly planted seeds and seedlings. Plant growth slowed. Except for my Irises, which were forced by the hot weather - they bloomed and most if them faded very quickly.

But Friday night through yesterday we got a good soaking rain, and the thirsty plants perked right up and are growing like crazy. It's going to be cool in the next several days, with more rain during the week.

In my back yard, the two Common Milkweed plants I had bought and the few I had transplanted from my front yard to my back yard a couple of years ago have become three sizable colonies, which may soon merge. I should see plenty of Monarch butterflies this year!

It is because of Common Milkweed's spreading habit that I have to eliminate the colony that formed from the single plant I put in my front yard 3 years ago. I did have a taker for some. There's no way I can dig it all out, so I am simply poisoning new shoots as I find them.

I planted some of ornamentals from seeds I saved last year - two varieties of Cosmos, and Flowering Tobacco. Some of the Cosmos I grew last year dropped seeds, so I have volunteer Cosmos also. I also have volunteer poppies, Calendula, Moss Roses, and Trailing Petunias. I put in some already-started Zinnias and Cosmos too.

My peppers are in and starting to grow well. I am expanding my herb garden. I have put in some more prairie plants.

My Prairie Columbine is blooming, and the hummingbirds are feeding on it.

My perennial Western wildflowers have buds, almost a month earlier than usual.

My peony is blooming, a week earlier than usual.

My sunflower patch on the verge (between the sidewalk and the street) is doing well.

kruoli 2022-05-23 11:53

Do you have [I]cosmos caudatus[/I] by chance? We have troubles here to get seeds from them because they bloom so late in the year. But having it as a salad is great!

Dr Sardonicus 2022-05-23 12:34

[QUOTE=kruoli;606321]Do you have [I]cosmos caudatus[/I] by chance? We have troubles here to get seeds from them because they bloom so late in the year. But having it as a salad is great![/QUOTE][i]Cosmos caudatus[/i]? Never heard of it. <google google>

Hmm. I [i]may[/i] have had one - and purely by chance - last year. I had Diablo, Bright Lights, Picotee and Sensation Cosmos. But there was this one Cosmos plant that just kept getting bigger, growing more and more foliage, and no hint of a flower bud. It was almost like a small shrub. I finally had to yank it because it got so big it was getting in my way.

There was an identical specimen among some extra Cosmos that got put in a neighbor's yard, along with some other annuals, to fill in the patch where a street tree had been removed the year before, and the stump ground out. Long after I'd yanked the one from my garden - well into Fall IIRC - that bushy Cosmos [i]finally[/i] bloomed. The flowers weren't very big. I don't even remember what color they were.

I would say that [i]Cosmos caudatus[/i] is a likely suspect. Perhaps some of its seeds got into the packets of other varieties of Cosmos by mistake.

Dr Sardonicus 2022-06-01 12:49

My Columbines and Irises are nearly done. Some of my volunteer Picatee Cosmos and trailing Petunias are blooming. My Penstemons are open. My Common Milkweed ([i]Asclepias syriaca[/i]) and Butterfly Weed ([i]Asclepias tuberosa[/i]) have buds that are showing color. My Mexican Hats and Gaillardias (Western wildflowers) are starting to open.

My other ornamentals (Sunflowers, Zinnias, orange Cosmos, Poppies, Marigolds) are growing well. I have seeding Flowering Tobacco ([i]Nicotiana pennsylvanica[/i]) where my initial front-yard Common Milkweed was. I have had to eliminate Common Milkweed from my front yard because it spreads uncontrollably. I now have plenty in my back yard, though!

Also in my back yard, my Wild Quinine ([i]Parthenium integrifolium[/i]) is blooming. My other prairie plants are doing well, but don't bloom until later. I have added Cardinal Flower ([i]Lobelia cardinalis[/i]), Tall Bellflower ([i]Campanula americana[/i], AKA [i]Campanulastris americana[/i]), Lance-leaf Coreopsis ([i]Coreopsis lanceolata[/i]) and more Missouri Ironweed to supplement my established specimen. My Coreopsis came with buds already formed, and started blooming when I put them in. The flower stalks on one of them were snipped off by rabbits, which left the stalks lying on the ground. The other new additions may not bloom until next year.

My False Sunflower ([i]Heliopsis helianthoides[/i]) has done well since I planted it two years ago. It bloomed its first year. It has since been spreading. In honor of its vigorous growth, I massacred the genus name and dubbed it "Heliopolis." It has buds.

But this year, it has come under attack by a heavy infestation of red aphids. I am using a spray bottle of water with a dash of liquid soap to kill them. A lot died and turned black after my first application, but there were more than enough survivors to justify a second application.

For those not familiar, aphids (sometimes called "plant lice") are very small, soft-bodied insects which suck the sap out of plants. They often go for tender areas of new growth. Heavy infestations can wilt, permanently deform, or kill the affected parts. Aphids sometimes also transmit pathogens like viruses.

Aphid infestations increase explosively when females reproduce asexually by parthenogenesis, giving birth to live young. The affected areas quickly become completely encrusted with aphids.

Meanwhile, there is a different kind of aphid attacking my established Missouri Ironweed ([i]Vernonia missurica[/i]). Unlike the aphids on my False Sunflower, these are being "farmed" by ants. The ants use a sugary liquid called "honeydew," excreted by the aphids, as food. The soap spray seems to be reducing this infestation rapidly.

Honeydew can accumulate on plant surfaces, providing a medium of growth for "sooty mold." This is commonly seen on trees due to infestations of scale insects.

richs 2022-06-01 15:57

We've had good results using ladybugs on our aphid-infested milkweed that we grow for Monarch butterflies. The ladybugs suck the internal fluids out of the aphids.

Dr Sardonicus 2022-06-02 04:49

[QUOTE=richs;606961]We've had good results using ladybugs on our aphid-infested milkweed that we grow for Monarch butterflies. The ladybugs suck the internal fluids out of the aphids.[/QUOTE]In my experience, the yellow-orange Oleander Aphid ([i]Aphis nerii[/i]) is the one that attacks Common Milkweed ([i]Asclepias syriaca[/i]).

From Bugguide, [url=https://bugguide.net/node/view/6167][i]Aphis nerii[/i][/url] - Oleander Aphid

[quote]Larvae of lacewings and lady beetles that feed on [i]Aphis nerii[/i] may have developmental problems during pupation, and either emerge with deformities (especially of the wings), or fail to emerge at all.[/quote]So I'm leery of using predatory insects on these imported pests.

Luckily, they haven't attacked my Common Milkweed this year - at least not yet. I don't want to harm any Monarch butterfly ([i]Danaus plexippius[/i]) caterpillars that may be feeding on the leaves! Soap water might harm them. So if the dreaded Oleander Aphid attacks, I may simply clip off infested portions, or use alcohol-soaked swabs.

Ladybugs, being beetles, have chewing mouth parts. They simply eat aphids. Their larvae, which look like miniature lizards, [i]really[/i] chow down on them. Lacewing larvae, AKA "aphid lions," also eat aphids.

BTW, if you happen to have Tropical Milkweed ([i]Asclepias curassavica[/i]), get rid of it! It harbors a protozoan parasite ([i]Ophryocystis elektroscirrha[/i]) of the Monarch butterfly. Replant with Common Milkweed ([i]Asclepias syriaca[/i]) or Butterfly Weed ([i]Asclepias tuberosa[/i]) which is a better garden plant than Common Milkweed, since it doesn't spread uncontrollably, and is not terribly tall.

richs 2022-06-03 04:03

No tropical milkweed here! We adopted about a half-dozen Monarch caterpillars last year when they completely denuded our friends' milkweed. We couldn't let them starve to death!

Dr Sardonicus 2022-08-08 13:32

2 Attachment(s)
After a [i]very[/i] dry late Spring and early Summer, a lot of my plants were stunted and struggling. But we got a much-needed soaking rain the second week of July, and recently got another good soaking. My plants are now quite happy, though generally much shorter than last year. My Diablo and Bright Lights Cosmos (light yellow-orange to dark orange) which I planted from seeds I gathered last year, have done very well.

My sunflower patch out by the street did quite well. A couple of the tall ones are in full bloom, but most of the patch has gone to seed.

My Common Milkweed and Butterfly Weed did spectacularly well, but alas there have been [i]very[/i] few Monarchs in the area this year - in fact, very few butterflies of most common species. A lot of people have noticed this. I did see one female Monarch laying eggs on my Common Milkweed, but did not see any subsequent signs of caterpillar damage on the plants.

My war against my sister's unwanted trumpet creepers is continuing. It had become clear by last fall that my tactics as described in [url=https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpost.php?p=579008&postcount=16]this post[/url] were insufficient. Herbicides stronger than glyphosate (Roundup) or concentrated brush killer (triclopyr 8.8%) are not an option, due to the proximity of desirable plants. I decided I had to dig more and deeper than I had been digging. And I have been much more vigilant about monitoring for new shoots. If I spot one, and know I won't be able to dig it out soon, I cut it to a short stub and poison the stub. This prevents the plant from regaining strength. But that merely holds it in check. It would take decades for that approach to exhaust the huge underground reserves this plant possesses.

I decided that, in order to destroy the enemy in a reasonable length of time, I had to apply an advanced mathematical technique - [i]extraction of roots![/i] Since I can't use stronger poisons or heavy equipment, this means, in some cases, digging out desirable plants temporarily so I can engage the enemy. In particular, I have lifted out goodly sections of iris beds after they were done blooming.

I have also adopted superior weapons and equipment. Garden gloves have been supplanted by work gloves made of stretchy fabric with the palms coated with a rubbery coating. Much more durable when used to grab and pull loose dirt out of a hole, and also much cheaper than garden gloves. The trowel has been replaced by a drain spade. The five gallon bucket to hold the dirt I dig out, has given way to an 18-gallon tote.

This year, I have more than once as I pursued the enemy, encountered the plastic I had wrapped around the roots last year. I hadn't gone nearly deep enough.

This year, I am either going as deep as the roots go, or until they become horizontal underground runners, or as deep as I can dig, which is as far down as my arm can reach to pull out the dirt I have loosened with the shovel or the asparagus picker, which is ideal for careful digging in tight quarters. I also carefully remove and set aside any fragments of root I accidently chop off.

Whatever root stubs I have to leave in the ground get thoroughly slathered with Roundup Super Concentrate (50% glyphosate) which is like a syrup and sticks well, and wrapped in plastic before I refill the hole.

During the hot summer weather I have only been able to work in the morning. Most digs produce right circular cylindrical holes about 9 inches in diameter, going straight down 2 feet, sometimes more. Some of my digs have uncovered what look like snakes' nests of roots looking like large intestines extending in multiple directions. Some digs have taken 2 days. One of those resulted in my removing 8 feet of rootstock. Another dig took took 3 days, and required extra buckets to hold the dirt. There were several large roots going straight down, and they were all connected. That might have been the "mother plant." I was told that that spot had once been a hibernaculum. I said it looked like one again. But not any more! :grin:

A lot of what I have read about trumpet creepers understates their resilience. The usual figure is that they can send up new shoots from up to 9 inches underground. My initial method, cutting to short stumps and poisoning the stumps, killed the root that far down. It was nowhere near enough. I have routinely encountered new shoots coming up from twice that deep (18 inches down). My record so far is a shoot that was starting upward from 26 inches down. That was from a 30-inch section of root that went straight down from a point underground where my previous efforts had damaged it, and was still going down when I ran out of arm. And I had trenched out from the edge of the hole so I could reach further down.

There have been a few butterfly species that have shown up in respectable numbers. These include some of the very small blue butterflies.

And one of these provided a bit of interest after my arduous toil digging out trumpet creeper roots the morning of August 7. After clipping out a 3-pronged root at arm's length deep, poisoning the remaining stubs, covering them with plastic, and starting to toss the loose dirt into the hole, a tiny blue butterfly landed on the back of my left work glove. (I have tentatively identified it as a male Eastern Tailed Blue, [i]Cupido comyntas[/i] FKA [i]Everes comyntas[/i].) It took out its proboscis and put it on the fabric, which was very dirty and thoroughly soaked in sweat. (This type of feeding is called "puddling.")

It stayed there, intermittently sipping, and sometimes rubbing its hind wings back and forth. It stayed put as I used that hand to gab dirt from the tote and toss it into the hole. It stayed put as I took the handle of the shovel in both hands, and used the grip to tamp down the dirt in the hole before tossing in more. I did this several times.

When the hole was all filled in, and the tote was empty, the butterfly was still there. I went to my sister's door to show her. She got her phone and got some pictures.

The butterfly took off but stayed close. I took off the work gloves. The butterfly landed on my bare hand! It walked, bobbed its antennae down and back up, and drank my sweat. It stayed around, taking off and landing on my hand again a few times. Then it went over to my sister for a visit, and finally flew away.

kriesel 2022-08-08 15:23

What's an asparagus picker? Have you tried a [URL="https://www.lowes.com/pd/CRAFTSMAN-9-in-Fiberglass-Handle-Post-Hole-Digger/1000752636"]posthole digger[/URL], which would increase your effective reach if the soil is sufficiently clumpy?
I had a mature honey locust tree and two large limbs of another removed recently. They are popping up new shoots widely scattered over about half of the lot. Ash stumps from the previous year's removals are still sending up new shoots, fortunately adjacent to the stumps only.
My garden is badly overrun with weeds right now. Fortunately about half are edible in salads and fairly nutritious.

Dr Sardonicus 2022-08-08 17:40

[QUOTE=kriesel;610972]What's an asparagus picker?[/quote]An asparagus picker is an implement about a foot long, with a V-shaped notch at the business end. The inside of the V is sharpened. It is commonly used to cut out lawn weeds at or near ground level. The prongs on the V-shaped notch, together with the small size, make it ideal for loosening dirt or clay adhering to roots, or from between adjacent forks of a root.

(There is another implement with a V-shaped notch which is absolutely blunt on the inside, which has a fulcrum and a long handle. It is a weed puller, used to lift weeds out of the ground by snugging the V around the crown, and using the lever and fulcrum for lifting it out. Ideal for broad-leaf plantain!)[quote]Have you tried a [URL="https://www.lowes.com/pd/CRAFTSMAN-9-in-Fiberglass-Handle-Post-Hole-Digger/1000752636"]posthole digger[/URL], which would increase your effective reach if the soil is sufficiently clumpy?[/quote]Believe me, I thought about using a post hole digger. Alas, it is not a good weapon for most of the digging of trumpet creeper roots. Fragments of root can grow into new plants, so have to be found and removed. This would be tedious using a post hole digger. And the roots can twist, turn, and change direction unpredictably. The operation is somewhat delicate and exacting, sometimes a lot like archaeological excavation. (And some of my digs have indeed turned up some interesting artifacts. People used to bury broken or worn-out items in times gone by, when there was no trash hauling service.)

When a root appears to be changing direction, the asparagus picker comes into play. But if I become desperate, and have already cut a single root off deep and need to go deeper, I may resort to a post hole digger.
[quote]I had a mature honey locust tree and two large limbs of another removed recently. They are popping up new shoots widely scattered over about half of the lot. Ash stumps from the previous year's removals are still sending up new shoots, fortunately adjacent to the stumps only.
My garden is badly overrun with weeds right now. Fortunately about half are edible in salads and fairly nutritious.[/QUOTE]
For "starts" of trees coming up from roots, I recommend cutting them down to short stumps, and painting the fresh cuts, and the whole stump thoroughly with concentrated brush killer. Treat as many as possible in a given small area, within a short time frame to destroy as much of the root system as possible. Depending on how extensive the root system actually is, you may have to do this multiple times. I pour a small amount of brush killer into an empty food can, and use a small brush which I keep in the can, to apply it.

There is, or at least was, a product from Dow specifically for killing stumps. Also to be applied to fresh cuts. The trade name was Tordon. The version they sold retail was in a plastic container with a dispenser on the end of the cap, like for some kinds of dishwashing liquids. Slide up to open, back down to close. The stuff had a bright blue dye so you could tell where you had applied it. If there was a root running along the ground in a lawn from a stump you applied it to, the grass around that root could also die. Some locales require(d) a license to use the stuff. Nowadays, when trees are removed from roadsides, the stumps are often ground out instead of being poisoned.

Concentrated brush killer is also good for killing stumps. Apply to fresh cuts. If the stump is not too big or the bark too thick, paint everything above ground thoroughly. (I sometimes then cover the patient with a piece of plastic grocery bag and secure it with thin twine, to prevent rain from washing off the poison before it can do its work, and to protect curious animals from sticking their noses in it. Brush killer is nasty, nasty stuff.)

If it's shoots coming from or near a large stump, cut off the shoots and treat them. Also cut well into the bark all the way around the stump, and get brush killer into the cut.

kriesel 2022-08-08 19:23

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;610984]For "starts" of trees coming up from roots, I recommend cutting them down to short stumps, and painting the fresh cuts, and the whole stump thoroughly with concentrated brush killer. Treat as many as possible in a given small area, within a short time frame to destroy as much of the root system as possible. Depending on how extensive the root system actually is, you may have to do this multiple times. I pour a small amount of brush killer into an empty food can, and use a small brush which I keep in the can, to apply it.

There is, or at least was, a product from Dow specifically for killing stumps. Also to be applied to fresh cuts. The trade name was Tordon. The version they sold retail was in a plastic container with a dispenser on the end of the cap, like for some kinds of dishwashing liquids. Slide up to open, back down to close. The stuff had a bright blue dye so you could tell where you had applied it. If there was a root running along the ground in a lawn from a stump you applied it to, the grass around that root could also die. Some locales require(d) a license to use the stuff. Nowadays, when trees are removed from roadsides, the stumps are often ground out instead of being poisoned.

Concentrated brush killer is also good for killing stumps. Apply to fresh cuts. If the stump is not too big or the bark too thick, paint everything above ground thoroughly. (I sometimes then cover the patient with a piece of plastic grocery bag and secure it with thin twine, to prevent rain from washing off the poison before it can do its work, and to protect curious animals from sticking their noses in it. Brush killer is nasty, nasty stuff.)

If it's shoots coming from or near a large stump, cut off the shoots and treat them. Also cut well into the bark all the way around the stump, and get brush killer into the cut.[/QUOTE]For the honey locust shoots, it's unclear which are coming from the flush cut stump root system and which are from the pruned tree that remains. Grinding all the root system out is not feasible since some of it is in visible surface contact with the concrete foundation of the home. Also there is considerable 3D overlap in reach of the two root systems. These are/were ~60 feet tall trees and planted much too close together decades ago when the initial landscaping was done. The older ash stumps have been much less trouble but are still hanging around with stump-adjacent shoots springing up regularly in the same fraction of a square foot per stump. Generally I just tear off the green new locust or ash shoots when they appear, but the locust trees seem to be responding by doubling the numbers and locations. The lawn service was by recently and applied some triclopyr. They often appear and post their little keep off the lawn for two days signs just as I'm about to mow. (Peace-time first-world problems...)

Dr Sardonicus 2022-08-09 02:07

[QUOTE=kriesel;610989]For the honey locust shoots, it's unclear which are coming from the flush cut stump root system and which are from the pruned tree that remains. Grinding all the root system out is not feasible since some of it is in visible surface contact with the concrete foundation of the home.
<snip>[/QUOTE]I had a large ash tree removed a few years ago. The top of the stump was just under 4 feet in diameter. It was far enough from any structures that burning it out was an option. It tried sending up new shoots the next year, so putting burning charcoal on top didn't burn it very far down. But I finally buckled down and took a hatchet to it to peel off the dead bark, made fresh cuts in the live bark, lopped off the shoots, and applied concentrated brush killer (triclopyr 8.8%) to all fresh cuts. That killed it dead. The next year, I again put lit charcoal on top, and the stump smoldered for three days, burning down to a foot below grade, leaving a relatively thin shell. I drilled some holes for drainage, and what's left has been rotting away very nicely.

I would recommend treating the honey locust and ash stumps similarly. If one of the stumps is the source of the roots against your foundation, so much the better. If I had actively growing tree roots against [i]my[/i] foundation, I wouldn't care where they came from. They would have to go. I'd poison them, then rip them out when they deteriorated sufficiently.

It seems reasonably likely that the many honey locust "starts" are from the felled tree. I'm reasonably familiar with honey locusts, and they don't generally form colonies connected by root systems.

Trees or shrubs being planted too close together, and/or too close to foundations, is, alas, a common occurrence.

LaurV 2022-08-09 04:57

[QUOTE=Dr Sardonicus;610966]The butterfly...[/QUOTE]
You were lucky! Such fearsome creature could eat you! Suck all your sweat out... :razz:
Joking apart, loved the story!

Dr Sardonicus 2022-08-09 12:28

[QUOTE=LaurV;611012]You were lucky! Such fearsome creature could eat you! Suck all your sweat out... :razz:
Joking apart, loved the story![/QUOTE]Fearsome creature, bwaaaahahahaha! Good one! Reminds me of the rabbit in [i]Monty Python and the Holy Grail[/i].

After drinking my bug-repellant-laden sweat, that little butterfly probably transformed into Mothra!

Glad you liked the story. It was quite impressive seeing that delicate little butterfly standing steady as a rock on the back of my glove while I was tamping down the dirt. Wham! Wham! Wham! The thing didn't even twitch. The fabric must have afforded a [i]very[/i] good foothold.

As to "fearsome creatures," we got 'em. Our native mosquitoes (mainly species of the genus [i]Culex[/i], floodwater mosquitoes) are bad enough, but there are also Asian Tiger Mosquitoes ([i]Aedes albopictus[/i]) which are active in broad daylight and carry several viral ailments. They probably think they're better than our native mosquitoes because they're [i]imported[/i].

Recently, there have been some [i]very[/i] large flies (over 2 cm long) buzzing about. When I heard a low-pitched droning, and saw a huge fat fly homing in on [i]me[/i], I swatted it away. It looked like it might be a horse fly. Horse flies are the "big brothers" of deer flies. I've been bitten by deer flies, and those bites really hurt. They practically tear out chunks of flesh when they bite. Horse flies are in the same family as deer flies, but are much bigger.

But at least here in the good ol' USA we don't (yet) have to worry about [i]Calyptra thalictri[/i], AKA the "vampire moth." They live closer to your neck of the woods. :razz:

Dr Sardonicus 2022-09-07 14:50

The leaves on much of my back yard Common Milkweed ([i]Asclepias syriaca[/i]) look to be infested with something like sooty mold. There won't be many seed pods this year.

Some of my Butterfly Weed looks similarly afflicted, but at least one plant is producing an abundant crop of seeds.

My Flowering Tobacco ([i]Nicotiana [strike]pennsylvanica[/strike] sylvestris[/i]) did quite well. I had one plant last year. This year, I had a bunch of volunteers, and planted some deliberately with some of the seeds I saved. It is a wonderment to me that such tiny seeds (they are much smaller than poppy seeds) can grow into plants around 6 feet or 2 meters high within a few months. This year, some of the leaves became food for the Tobacco Hornworm, the caterpillar of [i]Manduca sexta[/i], the six-spotted sphinx (AKA hawk or hummingbird) moth. I saw an adult moth feeding ("nectaring") at the flowers one evening. The flowers are white, with very long "throats," and become very fragrant in the evening. It is the largest hummingbird moth I have personally seen. Some of the caterpillars have been picked off the leaves, to limit the damage.

My wave or trailing petunias, relict of a previous owner's garden, have also done very well. They are annuals, but self-seed. I call them [i]Petunia monstrosa[/i]. They cover a large part of a garden bed, so help keep the weeds down. Their flowers also become very fragrant at night. Curiously, Petunias and Flowering Tobacco are both in the Nightshade family ([i]Solanaceae[/i]).

My Rocky Mountain Bee Plant also did very well this year. One grew about 6 feet (2 meters) tall. I am gathering a good harvest of seeds, which are very dark, and about the size of mustard seeds. The plant has the synonymous botanical names [i]Cleome serrulata[/i] and [i]Peritoma serrulata[/i].

My peppers have done well. I have two Thai Dragons producing well, also a Habanero, some Portugal Hot Peppers. I also have some Aji Dulce, Anaheims, Poblanos, and Bulgarian Carrot Peppers. In addition, some volunteers showed up to fill in the ranks that had been thinned by rabbits. One of these is a Tabasco pepper plant, growing near where I had one last year. If the weather holds long enough some of the peppers may ripen. I have some peppers dehydrated, and some smoked and dehydrated. They will be pulverized.

I have a new patch of volunteer Mexican Hats, with some [i]Petunia monstrosa[/i] mixed in, growing near the front of my patio. They haven't had a lick of care other than weeding, which - along with not getting any water during the dry spell - kept those petunia plants from getting large. The Mexican Hats and Petunias got there from seeds that dropped during previous fall clean-ups, when I cut down stalks in my front yard and brought them to my back yard to compost, or to dry out and burn. The flowers look nicer than the weeds that would otherwise be running riot - crabgrass, oxalis, smartweed, purslane, spotted spurge, chickweed, and others. The weeds in that area are much more manageable than in previous years.

The New England Asters are starting to bloom in earnest. The show's almost over for the year.

kruoli 2022-09-07 16:55

The "will to grow" of tobacco seeds does not stop to surprise me. This year, I had [I]nicotiana glauca[/I], [I]nicotiana rustica[/I] and the "normal" [I]nicotiana tabacum[/I]. The first one grows more like a tree and if we get a mild winter, it will be a good drought-resistant plant next year[SUP]0[/SUP]. It started to grow much faster as soon as it touched soil which was not in a pot. The second one is quite small, multiple plants have not exceeded a feet and a half, but it flowers rather quickly and I like the look. Since it has about five times more nicotine than "normal" tobacco, it is said to be an excellent insecticide, but I have not tried it yet. The third one, I removed the flowers in the first four weeks and they grew around eight feet in height. Now, they flower much more than the plant I had last year where I have not applied this radical procedure. Most of the flowers cut off resultet in three new "tries" of the plant.

[SUP]0[/SUP]: We had a really dry summer with next to no rain and we had to water a lot, even plants which would normally tolerate weeks without rain. But not months... My [I]salvia recognita[/I] seems to be the plant that was most comfortable with this situation (when looking at smaller plants, not trees). I have not watered it at all and it looks better than last year.

Dr Sardonicus 2022-09-08 12:32

1 Attachment(s)
Late May and June were really dry in E central Illinois, too. When I took this snapshot of my Mexican hats ([i]Ratibida columnifera[/i]) growing out by the street in late June, even a lot of weeds were shriveling up. The soil is very poor there, with a lot of gravel. Well-drained, though. The Mexican hats probably felt right at home.


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