Clippings by claire

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RE: Outdoor Thermometer - which type do you like? (Follow-Up #14)

posted by: claire on 01.19.2014 at 11:23 am in New England Gardening Forum

And if all of these fancy gadgets are too much for you, and you want something even more basic than Carl's weather sticks, I offer the Deck-centric Weather Forecast.

First thing in the morning I look out at my deck..

- Is it wet? It must have rained overnight and the temperature is above freezing.

- Are there splashes in the wet? It's still raining.

- Is the whole deck wet or just the part not under the overhang? If the whole deck is wet than there's strong winds from the east (or northeast or southeast). If only part, then it's relatively calm or the wind is from the west (or northwest or southwest). North winds are mostly blocked by the house.

- Is there snow on the deck that wasn't there yesterday? It snowed overnight and the temperature is at or below freezing.

- Is the snow depth increasing? It's snowing.

- Are there shadows on the deck? It's sunny.

This morning part of the deck was wet but no splashes, and there was a small amount of snow around the edges. A little later I started seeing shadows but on and off.

Therefore, it rained overnight but is not raining now, and the temperature is just around freezing. There's little wind and the sky is partly cloudy.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

And the squirrel conned me into throwing out peanuts again.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

The next level of the forecast is to look at the porch on the other side of the house, where similar rules apply except for the wind direction.

Claire

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clipped on: 01.20.2014 at 09:45 am    last updated on: 01.20.2014 at 09:45 am

RE: Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2014 #1 (Follow-Up #39)

posted by: corunum on 01.11.2014 at 10:16 am in New England Gardening Forum

Maybe this will work for me - it has to make letter sense.

grACKles are blACK

STARlings have STARs

Wouldn't you think that people who can remember some Latin plant names and the dates of the Hundred Years War could get this straight? We'll see how it goes.

NOTES:

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clipped on: 01.11.2014 at 10:24 am    last updated on: 01.11.2014 at 10:24 am

RE: transplanting lilies (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: corrine1 on 08.22.2011 at 11:41 pm in Lily Forum

Since it's best done during the cool fall weather you can mark your calendar now and learn a bit while you wait.

I like how detailed B&D Lilies.com explains how to transplant including what to do with the shovel & your hands. It's almost like someone is showing you how to do it & I learn best by doing.

"When all leaves have turned golden yellow or brown, cut stems down to 5 or 6 inches above ground level before starting work. Set your spading fork or shovel 4 to 6 inches away from the outer stem of a clump and dig down one complete shovel depth, at least 12 inches. Gently work your way around and under the white, pink or purple colored bulbs to easily lift them out of the ground. Bulbs which have put up multiple stems have either divided or produced smaller offshoots called bulblets. Gently tease them apart from each other, sorting as you go. Work with only one variety at a time to keep from mixing up different named clones.

With your fingers, clean excess soil from the bottom and sides of larger bulbs. There will be a group of stem roots just above the bulb that may have a few bulblets hidden within the cluster; you can use a garden hose to wash off soil to make them easier to find if you would like to save them, but any washed bulbs will need to be "air dried" for an hour or so before planting. Cut the old stem just above the large bulb and discard; stem roots are feeding roots, they grow new each year and are not needed over winter. Any bulblets that might be attached to the old stem can be gently removed at this time.

Plant larger sized bulbs with 4 to 6 inches of soil covering the top of the bulb, smaller ones or bulblets more shallow into already prepared soil. Dianna always recommends that you dig the receiving holes first, then dig out the bulbs for transplanting. Lilies do not like to dry out and an overzealous individual may tire or run out of time to finish the job in the same day, a good plan for moving other plants also, so don't take on more than you can completely do at one time.

Our lily bulbs that are dug in winter, and stored for spring shipping, are carefully packed in large bulb crates with attention given to proper moisture levels, moved to coolers in late November and the temperature is then slowly dropped to mimic a natural winter. This is difficult to achieve in a home refrigerator, the reason why lilies need to remain planted in the garden and not "stored" bare in a shed, garage or fridge over winter."

You can find more info on their website.

Here is a link that might be useful: photos on how to divide lilies

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clipped on: 07.25.2013 at 04:31 pm    last updated on: 07.25.2013 at 04:31 pm

RE: Epsoma Plant-tone fertilizer in containers. Potential bad odo (Follow-Up #10)

posted by: gardengal48 on 03.20.2013 at 05:27 pm in Soil Forum

We are talking container soil here - soil-less potting media. There is minimal life in this type of media, if any so, a) there is minimal concern about killing it off and b) this is the primary reason organic fertilizers won't work. No microbes, no digesting the organics into plant-accessible nutrients. (and btw, the microorganisms are in the soil - real soil that is, not in the fertilizer)

FWIW, both organic and synthetic fertilizers must present nutrients in exactly the same fashion - as soluble ions. That is the ONLY way plants can absorb them. The difference is how they get to that point. Nearly all organics require the activities of soil organisms to achieve solubility whereas most synthetics are immediately or very rapidly soluble, via salts. But the endpoint is exactly the same and the plants really do not care how the nutrients were delivered, only that they receive what they need.

But remember we are discussing growing plants in containers That is a very different concept than inground growing and with very different limitations on it. The simple fact of the matter is that organic fertilizers are far less efficient under any kind of container growing situation unless they are fully soluble. And most liqiud/soluble organic ferts leave something to be desired in that they are not as complete as one would wish.

With container gardening, I'd opt for optimum effectiveness and healthy plants rather than some noble but misguided notion that organics are the only way to go.

NOTES:

Good note about difference between fertilizers for in-ground plants and plants in containers.
clipped on: 03.20.2013 at 06:04 pm    last updated on: 03.20.2013 at 06:05 pm

RE: What kind of Winter, the Weathermen Are Predicting... (Follow-Up #9)

posted by: rockman50 on 08.21.2012 at 12:10 am in New England Gardening Forum

These long range predictions are really tough to make. Last year AccuWeather was VERY wrong about the winter forecast. And the fact is there is no clear climate signal between EL Nino and weather in New England. There are many other factors that must also be considered such as the NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation) and the Arctic Oscillation. Moreover, AccuWeather is saying something about the general storm track. But as we know, in these parts (but especially in SE New England which is most susceptible to snow changing to rain) a shift in the track of a noreaster by just 50 miles can mean the difference between a big snow or a big rain or a big miss. And these long range forecasts can't tackle these fine scale geographic issues.

And for what it is worth, the official forecast for winter issued by NOAA's Climate prediction center is for a higher chance of above normal temperatures for New England. But that doesn't say anything about snowfall. But there is one interesting correlation that has been established in New England. There is a higher probability of a snowier than normal winter following a colder than normal fall. Finally, I must take issue with this memory:

"I do miss the more predictable weather of my youth. The seasons were more dependable. Winter started in November not January. Summer was comfortably warm except for a couple of weeks of a heat wave. I wonder if we are going to see that kind of weather patterns again".

The data do not support this. We have warmed a bit since the 1970's but the seasonal fluctuations have not changed. The weather was not more predictable and seasons were not more dependable. If you look at the period from the 1950s to the 1970s you will find some of our hottest summers ever, some of the biggest snowstorms ever, some of the coldest winters ever, some of the warmest springs ever, October snows, record May snowstorms followed closely by heat waves, epic hurricanes, etc, etc.

So just sit back and enjoy the ride.

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clipped on: 08.21.2012 at 07:20 am    last updated on: 08.21.2012 at 07:21 am

RE: Geranium-like Weed, Variegated? (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: wendyb on 04.23.2012 at 08:08 am in New England Gardening Forum

The best way to find old GW conversations is to use a google search like so:

weed geranium arbo_retum site:gardenweb.com

Which quickly found this old answer:

http://forums2.gardenweb.com/forums/load/peren/msg0401560615587.html

NOTES:

Search tip.
clipped on: 04.24.2012 at 09:51 am    last updated on: 04.24.2012 at 09:51 am

RE: Geranium-like Weed, Variegated? (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: wendyb on 04.23.2012 at 05:47 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Mindy, et als,

another cool search tip for research is to use the .edu tag to filter out a lot of .com nonsense.

ranunculus repens site:.edu

Glad I don't have that weed. Garlic mustard is my early spring nemesis. Pulls out easily but seems never-ending. Trying to get it all before it flowers.

NOTES:

Search tip.
clipped on: 04.24.2012 at 09:50 am    last updated on: 04.24.2012 at 09:51 am

RE: Why did these baby birds disappeaer? (Follow-Up #33)

posted by: elly_nj on 06.04.2011 at 08:50 am in Bird Watching Forum

Those who wish to pet and baby wildlife love them, but those who respect their natures and wish to let them live their natural lives, love them more. ~ Edwin Way
Teale

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clipped on: 06.04.2011 at 05:39 pm    last updated on: 06.04.2011 at 05:39 pm

RE: i village ad help needed (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: nhbabs on 05.10.2011 at 12:00 pm in New England Gardening Forum

I use Safari on a Mac, but there may be similar provisions on other browsers and operating systems. When I am going to use Garden Web, I go to the Safari preferences and disable *Java Script and *Plugins. When I am done with GW I re-enable them, just altering a check box for each. That gets rid of popups and moving ads for me.

PS it won't let me post *Java Script as one word . . . tells me it is an illegal string!

NOTES:

Blocking ads on GW.
clipped on: 05.10.2011 at 12:34 pm    last updated on: 05.10.2011 at 12:35 pm

Bird identification please

posted by: kendra2 on 04.19.2011 at 12:03 pm in Bird Watching Forum

I keep seeing these birds at a local conservation area in MA. I have tried looking up what they are, but I can't figure it out. They were foraging with a flock of Chipping Sparrows. Their yellow "eyebrow" lines are quite distinct and bright. They were very shy so the pictures were taken from fairly far away. Also, it was dark and raining, so the picture quality is not great, but I'm hoping someone can help me ID them.
Photobucket
Photobucket

NOTES:

Probably Savannah/Ipswich Sparrows.
clipped on: 04.19.2011 at 08:31 pm    last updated on: 04.19.2011 at 08:33 pm

RE: sharpie or coopers (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: bob_n_bernie_wa on 02.04.2011 at 03:22 pm in Bird Watching Forum

14 inches from head to tail. Which is just about the crossover size between Coopers and Sharpie.

It would be more accurate to say 14 inches is the average size of a Male Cooper's and a female Sharpie.

The average size of a male Sharpie is 10 inches. A female Coop is 21.

Just as you used your fence to determine the size, we did a similar thing with pictures we took of a juvenile Sharpie female and a juvenile male Cooper's sitting on the same fence. We manipulated one of the pictures to have the board the same width as the board in the other picture. This makes the birds' sizes in porportion to the fence and each other.

We put the pictures side by side in a single picture. It is clear you can not tell a size difference between them.

BN and all. We put the lines on the picture to show how to tell the difference. Bud Anderson of the Falcon Research Group in Bow, WA, FRG.org, is the only one we have heard speak to this I.D. tip. He claims a Coop is the only hawk type bird in that size range with that head shape in profile. Once you learn to look for the head shape first, as we have, it is much easier to determine if the bird is a Coop.

All birds are never still. They are either looking side to side for food or to keep from becoming food. If you are looking with binoculars, it is easy to see even if the bird is not cloose. I f you are taking pictures, take a lot. You will get some with the head in profile.

Most people, us included, usually choose the pictures we like best when the bird is looking at us because they look fiercer. I believe a lot of the pictures are posted with that in mind, even when the submitter has pictures in profile. Bob of BnB

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clipped on: 02.12.2011 at 08:47 pm    last updated on: 02.12.2011 at 08:47 pm

RE: Adding compost in the Fall? (Follow-Up #9)

posted by: kimmsr on 11.12.2010 at 07:47 am in Soil Forum

If the garden is designed in such a way that no one walks on the soil the plants grow in there is no reason to till, or cultivate, that soil once it has been well prepared, other than to maybe bury a few "weeds" growing there. although if that garden is planted well there should be no "weeds" because in thew words of Ann Lovejoy, "If you have "weeds" you do not have enough plants."
In the current issue of Organic Gardening magazine are two good articles about soil, one by Jeff Cox and oine Debra Prinzing about "Pat Marfisi's small but prolific vegetable garden."
Get your gardens soil ready for planting in the fall so you do not need to worry about doing that in the spring.

NOTES:

...if that garden is planted well there should be no "weeds" because in thew words of Ann Lovejoy, "If you have "weeds" you do not have enough plants."
clipped on: 11.12.2010 at 11:40 am    last updated on: 11.12.2010 at 11:42 am

RE: Let's Post Pictures! (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: spedigrees on 11.05.2010 at 04:58 pm in New England Gardening Forum

mad_gallica I love your roses and siberian iris! I wish I could grow roses here but it's a bit too cold for them to be hardy here. I have siberian iris though and love them.

pixie, most paid email accounts also include free ftp space for storing photos, which might be an easier alternative to the free sites. For example I posted my photos below that are stored on my sovernet (Southern Vermont) email account's server. I hope this helps. Once you get your photos stored on a server, just type this code into your post.

The pictures above are from this past summer. For some reason the only garden photos I took this year were of my perennial beds out back.

The first two show my siberian iris and the second one also shows my red lupine (wish my purple lupine would thrive as well as the red, even though I prefer the red. Maybe that's it; they sense the favoritism and bloom accordingly!)

The second pic also has my three newly planted rhubarb plants in a row in the foreground. I'm hoping for a good harvest next summer!

The 3rd photo shows purple bee balm just below and slightly to the right of the lantern in the foreground. The rest of the reds and purples are phlox and the orange, daylilies. Also some wild black eyed Susies in the far bed in the distance.

As an afterthought here's a better shot of the bee balm with daylily behind it. I think the photo above this last one shows the bee balm in a 'mostly gone by' condition. This shows it in its full glory! (It was an accidental freebee that rode home in a pot of phlox. It was a single stem back then, but it has prospered!)

NOTES:

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clipped on: 11.08.2010 at 02:58 pm    last updated on: 11.08.2010 at 02:59 pm

RE: Let's Post Pictures! (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: claire on 11.04.2010 at 08:35 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Nice roses, mad_gallica.

pixie: For an overview on posting photos, take a look at the FAQ.

You can either use a web hosting site (there are many, such as Photobucket, Picasa and Picture Trail) or you can use TinyPic.com,

The advantage of the hosting site is that you can set up a page with many photos on it and organize them by topic. A great example is sedum37's site on Picture Trail (see the Flora in Winter thread).

The disadvantage of the hosting site is that you have to set up an account.

The advantage of TinyPic.com is that it's very easy to upload one photo and link to it, and you don't have to set up an account.

The disadvantage of TinyPic.com is that you can only upload one photo at a time, which is not useful if you want to show many photos.

------------------------------------------------------

That said, I use TinyPic.com myself.

You don't have to set up an account at a hosting site if you use TinyPic.com.

1. The photo files on your computer must be in a format such as jpeg or jpg.

2. Using Tiny Pic, you hit the "Choose File" button and it searches your computer desktop.

3. Choose one then select a size ("Resize" button), and then UPLOAD NOW.

4. When the file is uploaded, copy the HTML tag, not the IMG tag.

5. Paste the HTML tag in your post.

This is the easiest way I know.

Claire

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clipped on: 11.05.2010 at 01:41 pm    last updated on: 11.05.2010 at 01:41 pm

RE: Wintering a Hibiscus in the basement? (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: mad_gallica on 09.22.2010 at 07:04 pm in New England Gardening Forum

For plants that go dormant from cold, basements are usually too warm.

For plants that don't go dormant, basements are usually too dark.

Sometimes, the particulars of your particular house allow you to get away with things.

NOTES:

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clipped on: 09.22.2010 at 08:08 pm    last updated on: 09.22.2010 at 08:09 pm

RE: Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2010 #3 (Follow-Up #44)

posted by: claire on 08.09.2010 at 08:59 pm in New England Gardening Forum

INSTRUCTIONS FOR POSTING PHOTOS

For an overview of the process, see the FAQ in the New England Gardening Forum: How do I use HTML Code to change fonts and insert stuff in posts?
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
To simplify:

You don't have to set up an account at a hosting site if you use TinyPic.com.

The photo files on your computer must be in a format such as jpeg or jpg.

Using Tiny Pic, you hit the "Choose File" button and it searches your computer desktop. Choose one then select a size ("Resize" button), and then UPLOAD NOW.

When the file is uploaded, copy the HTML tag, not the IMG tag.

Paste the HTML tag in your post.

This is the easiest way I know.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
If that was too simple, then a while ago, prairiemoon2 posted excellent
"Step by step directions for using tinypic.com

1. On their website, click on choose file, which brings up your files on your 
computer, find and highlight the photo you want, click choose.

2. click on the 'resize' drop down menu and choose Message Board size.


3. click Upload now

4. when it is finished creating the photo to post, you see a page titled 'Share This Image', right underneath that title are boxes with codes in them. highlight all the letters and symbols in the box titled 'HTML for Websites' then copy that and paste it to the body of the message you are trying to post. 


5. Hit 'preview message' on GW and you should see the photo you are trying to post in the body of the email. Then if it is the size you want you can 
submit your message and voila! If you want a different size, you can go 
back and do it again, choosing a different size."

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clipped on: 08.09.2010 at 09:01 pm    last updated on: 08.09.2010 at 09:02 pm

RE: Moved a 50-60' tall Oak Tree (Follow-Up #61)

posted by: nandina on 03.06.2010 at 08:35 pm in Trees Forum

Haven't checked this Forum in awhile. You are having fun here! Last year I had the opportunity to visit a private plantation restoration that is very hush, hush. No pictures allowed under any circumstances. Talk about moving oaks. Rhizo, imagine the largest live oaks you have ever seen. This plantation had moved 20+ of those monsters, some dug on the plantation and others came from Florida on barges up the rivers to the plantation dock. Of course, professionals were in charge and the trees looked very healthy when I saw them. I had lots of questions but was not allowed to talk to the arborist company who were on site digging a hole ready for the next live oak installation.

Kntryhuman, press on. Several suggestions for you which some may jump all over...but, these are not going to harm your tree and may help.

Yes, mulch with a pine bark mulch. As I started reading through this thread I began thinking sugar might be helpful. If this were my tree I would do the following. Save several wheelbarrow loads of pine bark mulch. Add to each wheelbarrow load of mulch, three shovelfuls of dried molasses (can be purchased at feed stores) and five shovelfuls of the surface soil from the area from which you dug the tree. This soil should contain the natural Mycorrhizal fungus in which the oak grew. Stir all together gently and spread around the tree about a foot beyond the drip edge. Repeat with second wheelbarrow load. Also, if you are near wooded areas and can locate fallen trees with 'stump dirt' in their rotting trunks, add this to the mix. Urge you to try the above ideas even if Dan Staley sputters. Mycorrhizal fungus develops on the soil surface by cold composting of leaves/litter. Whenever one moves a shrub or tree it does no harm to gently rake a bit of the surface soil taken from the old planting spot in with the mulch of the new. Not all plants utilize it but it is a quick operation and not at all harmful. Might be useful.

NOTES:

How to mulch transplanted oak with pine bark, dried molasses and original surface soil - encourage natural Mycorrhizal fungi.
clipped on: 03.07.2010 at 02:32 pm    last updated on: 03.07.2010 at 02:34 pm

Black Vultures

posted by: cjc45 on 08.31.2009 at 02:57 pm in Bird Watching Forum

Ran into a group of friends at the lake today. I tried to stay in the shade but they were sunbathing.

Sunning

Photobucket

Photobucket

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clipped on: 09.01.2009 at 12:18 pm    last updated on: 09.01.2009 at 12:19 pm

RE: Replacement for black hollyhocks (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: nandina on 03.29.2009 at 06:55 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Try the following for hollyhock rust. Toss a heavy dose of regular grocery store purchased cornmeal on and around the plants just as the new spring foliage is emerging. Then dampen the cornmeal with a spritz of water. Repeat cornmeal treatment every two weeks. The cornmeal may turn an ucky black color. Don't panic, just keep treating.

NOTES:

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clipped on: 04.18.2009 at 05:30 pm    last updated on: 04.18.2009 at 05:30 pm

RE: Did they make it? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: runktrun on 03.28.2009 at 05:21 pm in New England Gardening Forum

silly,
It is still too soon for me to see most of your list so I assume the same would be true for you as well. Keep in mind Platycodon - Balloon Flower comes up very late, it will look like little spears of asparagus poking up through the ground. The poem below might offer you a few excuses...ahh...reasons your plants might die.

Why Did My Plant Die?
Geoffrey B. Charlesworth

You walked too close. You trod on it.
You dropped a piece of sod on it.
You hoed it down. You weeded it.
You planted it the wrong way up.
You grew it in a yogurt cup
But you forgot to make a hole;
The soggy compost took its toll.
September storm. November drought.
It heaved in March, the roots popped out.
You watered it with herbicide.
You scattered bonemeal far and wide.
Attracting local omnivores,
Who ate your plant and stayed for more.
You left it baking in the sun
While you departed at a run
To find a spade, perhaps a trowel,
Meanwhile the plant threw in the towel.
You planted it with crown too high;
The soil washed off, that explains why.
Too high pH. It hated lime.
Alas it needs a gentler clime.
You left the root ball wrapped in plastic.
You broke the roots. Theyre not elastic.
You walked too close. You trod on it.
You dropped a piece of sod on it.
You splashed the plant with mower oil.
You should do something to your soil.
Too rich. Too poor. Such wretched tilth.
Your soil is clay. Your soil is filth.
Your plant was eaten by a slug.
The growing point contained a bug.
These aphids are controlled by ants,
Who milk the juice, it kills the plants.
In early spring your gardens mud.
You walked around! Thats not much good.
With heat and light you hurried it.
You worried it. You buried it.
The poor plant missed the mountain air:
No heat, no summer muggs up there.
You overfed it 10-10-10.
Forgot to water it again.
You hit it sharply with the hose.
You used a can without a rose.
Perhaps you sprinkled from above.
You should have talked to it with love.
The nursery mailed it without roots.
You killed it with those gardening boots.
You walked too close. You trod on it.
You dropped a piece of sod on it

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clipped on: 04.06.2009 at 04:18 pm    last updated on: 04.06.2009 at 04:18 pm

RE: Sweet Olive - Osmanthus fragrans (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: georgez5il on 07.19.2008 at 01:31 pm in Plant Propagation Forum

Best time to take cuttings August thru Sept. Use semi-hardwood to hardwood cuttings.weith a HEEL taken from a side branch. Apply 0.8% IBA (Rooting hormone) takes 30-100 days to root.

NOTES:

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clipped on: 12.31.2008 at 05:30 pm    last updated on: 12.31.2008 at 05:30 pm

It's August and time for the 'toothpick' technique

posted by: nandina on 08.23.2006 at 01:13 pm in Plant Propagation Forum

I have not posted this propagation method in several years. Time for a repeat. Just a reminder that all cuttings need to callus before they will root. This method allows the callusing to take place on the mother plant before the cutting is removed and is most helpful for those hard to root trees/shrubs. Plan to use the toothpick technique during the last weeks of August up until mid-September. This is a little known process and when I first posted it a number of growers contacted me, pleased to know about it as it requires no misting systems, etc.

MATERIALS REQUIRED...
A very sharp, small penknife or Exacto knife.
A small block of wood (to prevent cutting fingers!)
Some colored yarns or tape for marking purposes.
Toothpicks.

THE TOOTHPICK PROPAGATION TECHNIQUE
1. Select the stem from which you wish to take a cutting. Look along it until you locate a bud ON LAST YEAR'S GROWTH.

2. Place the block of wood behind that point and make a single VERTICAL cut all the way through the stem, just below the bud.

3. Insert a toopick through the cut.

4. Mark each cutting with colored yarn/tape so that you can locate it at a later date.

5. Walk away from your toothpick cuttings until the end of October or November. Leave them alone!

6. REMOVING THE CUTTINGS FROM THE MOTHER PLANT.
You will note that a callus has formed where you wounded the cutting and inserted a toothpick. With sharp pruning shears remove the cutting just below the toothpick. Trim off the toothpick on either side of the cutting.

7. Dip your cuttings in rooting hormone and set them in a cold frame. Water well and close up the frame for the winter. Water as needed. If you do not have a cold frame, set the cuttings right next to your house foundation on the east or north side. Lean an old window or glass pane up against the foundation to protect them.

8. Rooting should take place by mid-spring. Those with greenhouses can leave the cuttings on the mother plant into December/January before setting them to root. Commercial propagators will find this useful.

A VARIATION OF THE TOOTHPICK TECHNIQUE
This method requires a bit of practice but works well. In August/September select the stem to be used as a cutting. Locate last year's growth on the stem and grasp it between thumb and forefinger. Snap the stem lightly until it breaks in half. Leave it hanging on the plant where it will callus. Then follow instructions above for setting cuttings. Snip the cutting off, when callused, at the wounded part. This is a useful technique for azaleas and many woody shrubs and Japanese maples.

Hopefully I have explained this method so it is understood. Reading it over a few times may be necessary.

NOTES:

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clipped on: 12.31.2008 at 05:23 pm    last updated on: 12.31.2008 at 05:24 pm

RE: Project FeederWatch 2008/2009 (Follow-Up #27)

posted by: claire on 11.28.2008 at 08:52 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Thanks, franeli and thyme2dig. I get enormous pleasure out of taking the photos, and I'm delighted that other people enjoy them too.

Today I saw another male cardinal at the pokeberry right outside my kitchen window. I barely had to use the zoom he was so close.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

He almost seemed to be posing for me; he probably knows how handsome he is with the bright red and black color scheme.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

You still watching me?
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

This is my better profile - eat your heart out.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic


I can't imagine a garden now without birds.

Claire

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clipped on: 11.29.2008 at 01:06 pm    last updated on: 11.29.2008 at 01:22 pm

Interesting read on soil temperatures and grass growth

posted by: nc_lawn_nut on 08.17.2008 at 03:18 pm in Lawn Care Forum

A report published by the North Carolina State University Turf Council ("Soil Temperature Reports Aid Managers" March 31, 2005) shows the impact of soil temperature on cool and warm season turf. Knowing where you are at in this
range should help you understand how bad your turf is hurting right now.

Excerpted from the report:
The following is a partial list of soil temperatures (F) at the 4-inch depth that should be of the association with certain biological events.

Cool Season Grasses
90F Shoot growth ceases.
77F Root growth ceases.
70F Maximum temperature for root growth of any consequence.
70F Time to plant grasses in late summer.
60-75F Optimum temperature for shoot growth.
50-65F Optimum temperature for root growth.
40F Shoot growth ceases.
33F Root growth ceases.
20F Low temperature kill possible if temperature subsequently drops
rapidly below 20F
Warm Season Grasses
120F Shoot growth ceases.
110F Root growth ceases.
80-90F Optimum shoot growth.
75-85F Optimum root growth.
74F Optimum time to overseed bermudagrass with ryegrass in the fall. Time to plant grasses in the spring.
64F Expected spring root decline is triggered and roots turn brown and die within 1 or 2 days.
50F Root growth begins to slow below this temperature.
50F Chilling injury resulting in discoloration is possible.
50F Initiation of dormancy occurs resulting in discoloration.
25F Low temperature kill possible.

Syringing to keep greens cool.
Below are two short articles on syringing to keep turf cool. The first is from Karl Dannenberger (Ohio State University) showing the impact of syringing, the second from David Kopec (University of Arizona) discussing syringing vs.handwatering.
http://www.turfgrasstrends.com/turfgrasstrends/article/articleDetail.jsp?id=99488
http://ag.arizona.edu/turf/ccps699.htm

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clipped on: 10.19.2008 at 08:56 pm    last updated on: 10.19.2008 at 08:56 pm

Baby birdies (Follow-Up #12)

posted by: spedigrees on 09.30.2008 at 03:15 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Here are our little swallows from a couple years ago. Aren't they cute? They make an awful mess of the porch, but a bucket of warm water and chlorine bleach puts it back to rights after they've flown. They come back to the nest at night for about a week after they've learned to fly, as do the parent birds to keep an eye on them.

Photobucket

Photobucket

They all open their mouths when they hear one of the parent birds approaching with food.

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clipped on: 09.30.2008 at 03:49 pm    last updated on: 09.30.2008 at 03:49 pm

RE: Oops, I Meant Burning Bush Alternative Not Firebush (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: kwoods on 11.12.2007 at 10:55 am in Native Plants Forum

"Another choice might be the native version: Euonymus atropurpureus."

The Wahoo look absolutely amazing outside my office window right now. The common name is too good not to use.

It's a large municipal planting of Wahoo, Maple Leaved Viburnum and Arrowwood. Incredible planting for fall color. They inexplicably hack everything back savagely midsummer every year. Whoever put them in obviously knew what they were doing but they must have moved on. I wonder how beautiful they might be if they got better treatment.

Some individual photo's I scrounged on the web of the plants in question.


Arrowwood

Maple-Leaved Viburnum

Eastern Wahoo

NOTES:

Fall colors with natives
clipped on: 09.26.2008 at 04:45 pm    last updated on: 09.26.2008 at 04:46 pm

RE: Porcelain berry --worry or not? (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: carl18 on 09.02.2008 at 11:32 am in New England Gardening Forum

Let me attempt to brighten your frame of mind:

My feeling is that Mother Nature really DOES have it all under control (how many millions of years has it been?). . .for example, with any luck, one day you'll find
one of those nasty hornworms on your prized tomatoes and, lo and behold, it has a pack of tiny parasitic wasps glued
to it's backside. . .once these little predators turn up, you'll have no more hornworms that season. Bottom line:
we're the one's who are out of line, not M. Nature. . .
sigh. . .

Appropos this subject, I am HIGHLY recommending a remarkable book (discovered here on GW on someone's book list) titled "Noah's Garden" by Sara Stein. . .it's all
about understanding the complex ecology of our (very
unnatural) gardens, and trying to go native. . .which she
freely acknowledges is tough (given how extreme our gardens have become), but possible in moderation. I found
an inexpensive copy at Amazon.com used books. . .

Carl

NOTES:

Keep for FAQ on books
clipped on: 09.02.2008 at 12:17 pm    last updated on: 09.02.2008 at 12:18 pm

RE: Mycorrhizae Fungi has anyone used this product? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: nandina on 07.24.2008 at 01:12 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Several types of fertilizer with mycorrhizal fungus added have appeared on the market. Sure, give them a try. One of the best Google searches to further understand this subject is "plants that do not need mycorrhizal fungus". You can Google the MF subject and read forever. However, no one really tells you how simple it is to make your own.

MF develops from the annual cold composting of tree, shrub and plant/leaf litter that drops to the ground in the fall. The savy gardener owns a shredder and as each bed is cleaned up in the fall the debris is shredded and spread back on that bed as mulch where it cold composts and develops every type of MF needed by the plants (or future plants) in that particular garden. Grass clippings are allowed to remain on a lawn to cold compost. Tree leaves are raked, shredded and spread under shrubs. I keep a pile not more that 6" high of leaves from around the yard tucked under a low branched shrub as a source of MF for new plantings. I just reach in under the pile and take several tablespoons of this MF rich soil to add to each planting hole. MF develops at the soil surface so stir it gently in at the top of the planting hole. Those who have undisturbed, unraked woodland gardens have plenty of MF in that soil for addition to new plantings. In the meantime, gardeners with small yards or no interest in leaf shredding should try the MF added fertilizers.

Not all plants require MF for growth, but most do. Some at the top of the list are beech trees, strawberries, orchids and grapes.

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clipped on: 07.24.2008 at 02:03 pm    last updated on: 07.24.2008 at 02:04 pm

Chicken Salad recipe (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: ctlady on 05.04.2008 at 11:23 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Forgot to include this (per request!):

Curried chicken w/avocado filling for pita

2 cups cooked cubed or shredded chicken
1/4 cup currants or raisins
1 tb. finely chopped onion
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup diced avocado

Mix together all ingredients except avocado. Add avocado just before serving and toss gently. Serve stuffed in pita halves. Makes 3 cups filling. Take to your next picnic and enjoy!

Embarrassingly simple ;)

/ Marty

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clipped on: 05.05.2008 at 08:52 pm    last updated on: 05.05.2008 at 08:53 pm

RE: Brainstorm a hedgerow in VT (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: mad_gallica on 01.12.2008 at 10:15 am in New England Gardening Forum

Definitely have a pH test done. North of the terminal moraine, the soil is no longer predictibly acidic. The peonies and lilacs like lime, but the rhododendrons and blueberries don't.

By observation, it seems to me that around here to keep a field brush free, it has to be mowed at least once a month. That tends to really freak out people who have dreams of nice prairie wildflower collections, who haven't quite figured out that they live in the woods, even if they don't have any trees.

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clipped on: 01.12.2008 at 10:54 am    last updated on: 01.12.2008 at 10:54 am

RE: Project FeederWatch 2007/2008 (Follow-Up #36)

posted by: claire on 12.26.2007 at 12:23 pm in New England Gardening Forum

sooey: Thanks for alerting me to that article - I don't often get the Cape Cod Times, so I went to capecodonline.com:

Annual bird count booms

"Most impressive was the total of 442 tufted titmouse recorded, smashing the previous high of 268. This species colonized Cape Cod in 1977 and so loathes flying over water that they came across the canal by flying from girder to girder on the bridges. They are apparently here to stay.

Impressive as well was the record-high count for Eastern bluebirds, with 48 individuals recorded on count day."

I love the image of the titmice flying from girder to girder - probably beating the Cape traffic on some summer holiday weekends.

*************** *************** **************** ***************** ************ *************

I made my own Christmas Bird Count using this as my count site:

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Christmas Bird Ornaments - 2007

1 blue-speckled top-perching bird
2 red-breasted yellow-backed wooden birds
2 red-breasted green-backed wooden birds
1 ruby-throated cloisonne hummingbird
1 blue-capped cloisonne hummingbird
4 Mexican painted metal birds
1 shiny gold metal bird

and 7 assorted eggs

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic


I didn't consciously set out to collect bird ornaments - they just seemed to fit my ornament tree. Did I mention I love my new digital camera?

Hope the Holidays are flying high for all of you!

Claire

NOTES:

Christmas 2007
clipped on: 12.26.2007 at 08:47 pm    last updated on: 12.26.2007 at 08:50 pm

RE: Batten down the hatches, Southern New England (Follow-Up #20)

posted by: claire on 11.04.2007 at 06:19 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Oh yes, we lost power... It went off at 5:30 pm EDT Sat. night and just came back at 5:15 pm EST today, Sunday. 24 hours and 45 minutes (but who's counting). Our line goes over the river and through the woods and they always seem to save it for last.

Telephone went off today too, so I couldn't get online (dialup).

Temperature in the house got down to about 51 degrees by this afternooon. At least I had my pot of (cold) coffee and the Halloween candy...

I went down to the beach this morning - the beach grass buffer zone repelled the waves and there's no damage to the cliff. The beach looked wonderfully smooth as if the storm had ironed it. Just one guy and two happy dogs walking on the sand. The danger zone down the beach was OK too, the water was up to the cliff, but didn't take a bite.

I checked with my neighbor - the tree that came down on the property line laid a few branches on his hot tub, but it still holds water, so he's not worried. I'll get an arborist to remove the tree.

Last night was hairy at the time of high tide, when the winds and waves were roaring. I was very thankful for my battery-operated radio which helped distract me from the sounds - it was dark so I couldn't see what the trees and waves were doing - all I could do was listen and hope.

I jury-rigged a support system for my bent-over wisteria standard so it's upright until I figure out a better support. The good thing is that it will probably bloom beautifully next year. A storm got it last year and this spring was the best bloom it's ever had. Some people beat their wisteria with bats and savagely root prune them to force bloom - I just wait for another storm.

Did I mention how nice it is to have heat in the house? I was NOT looking forward to another cold night, or morning rather, with temperatures forecast for low 30's overnight. Bed is nice and warm, but getting up in a cold room can be unpleasant. Not to mention getting dressed. I was also worried about the more tender tropical houseplants

And now I can open the refrigerator and freezer without fear.

Is the hurricane season over yet?

Claire

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clipped on: 11.04.2007 at 06:19 pm    last updated on: 11.04.2007 at 06:19 pm

RE: Moss ball , not Moth ball (Follow-Up #39)

posted by: claire on 01.09.2007 at 11:40 am in New England Gardening Forum

Well Yama, if you like monster dragons... I dug out some photos I took at the New York Botanical Garden in the Children's Garden in December 2004. These were mostly made out of pine cones and greenery so I would think moss and pine cones would be fine.

When you visit the Brooklyn Botanic Garden with Cady you should check out the NYBG in the Bronx too.








But you have to be careful, some of these things stalk small prey...

Claire

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clipped on: 09.02.2007 at 05:11 pm    last updated on: 09.02.2007 at 05:11 pm

RE: Restoring fertility of yard after housefire (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: kimmsr on 08.28.2007 at 07:31 am in Soil Forum

Start by contacting the local office of your state universities USDA Cooperative Extension Service about having a good, reliable soil test for base nutrient and soil pH levels and then dig in with these simple soil tests to see what that soil now has,
1) Structure. From that soil sample put enough of the rest to make a 4 inch level in a clear 1 quart jar, with a tight fitting lid. Fill that jar with water and replace the lid, tightly. Shake the jar vigorously and then let it stand for 24 hours. Your soil will settle out according to soil particle size and weight. A good loam will have about 1-3/4 inch (about 45%) of sand on the bottom. about 1 inch (about 25%) of silt next, about 1 inch (25%) of clay above that, and about 1/4 inch (about 5%) of organic matter on the top.

2) Drainage. Dig a hole 1 foot square and 1 foot deep and fill that with water. After that water drains away refill the hole with more water and time how long it takes that to drain away. Anything less than 2 hours and your soil drains too quickly and needs more organic matter to slow that drainage down. Anything over 6 hours and the soil drains too slowly and needs lots of organic matter to speed it up.

3) Tilth. Take a handful of your slightly damp soil and squeeze it tightly. When the pressure is released the soil should hold together in that clump, but when poked with a finger that clump should fall apart.

4) Smell. What does your soil smell like? A pleasant, rich earthy odor? Putrid, offensive, repugnant odor? The more organic matter in your soil the more active the soil bacteria will be and the nicer you soil will smell.

5) Life. How many earthworms per shovel full were there? 5 or more indicates a pretty healthy soil. Fewer than 5, according to the Natural Resources Conservation Service, indicates a soil that is not healthy.
to see what you need to do to make it into something good and healthy that will grow what you want.

NOTES:

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clipped on: 08.28.2007 at 08:28 pm    last updated on: 08.28.2007 at 08:28 pm

RE: Garden Stores in Falmouth (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: diggingthedirt on 08.03.2007 at 01:01 pm in New England Gardening Forum

Falmouth, MA, not ME, right?

For plants, especially woody plants, I like Pondscapes - it's actually in Cataumet, on rt 28A, about a 10-15 minute drive from downtown Falmouth.

For temperennials, Flower Garden Nursery on Sandwich Rd, up near Rt 151, is good; I've also gotten some interesting perennials, vines, and even shrubs/trees there. The owners, Terrie and Reggie Soares, are great gardeners.

There's an RF Morse and a Mahoneys in East Falmouth - both are pretty big and you never know what you'll find there - Morse tends to have good sales and occasionally interesting plants.

For "accents" I like Twigs, on Main St, right downtown. Great garden art, fountains, some tools, gloves, lots of "botanicals" - the owner is really nice.

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clipped on: 08.03.2007 at 08:31 pm    last updated on: 08.03.2007 at 08:32 pm

RE: irregular bluestone walkway (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: treebeard on 06.06.2005 at 02:04 pm in New England Gardening Forum

The idea of going 'below the frostline' is really something that has more to do with the construction of habitable space...like a building of home. It's really quite amazing how much power can be put forth by water in the freeze-thaw cycle. Foundations that don't extend below the local frostline can, indeed, be heaved by the freezing of groundwater. And then, as the water thaws, whatever has been lifted will settle back, but not always to the same place it was originally. And it really only takes a little bit of vertical movement on a foundation to crack the concrete, the sheetrock walls, the ceilings, etc. It doesn't take much at all. And, as anyone who has been faced with it knows, the costs of repairs to such heaving can be outrageous.

Walkways and patios aren't looked upon with the same serious concern as the house, even though costs of repairs after heaving can be hefty. After all, it's only a walkway, right? Well, perhaps not if it's 'your' walk, and 'your' money.

Normally, bed preparation for a walkway doesn't exceed 12" or so. Dry set walkways should be founded upon material that is free-draining, which really just means that water won't just sit there...it will drain 'through' the material and keep going...to where ever it's going. The dryer the material in the winter, the less likely it will be to heave. Around here, we use a range of materials for the base beneath a dry-set design. Gravel (around here that a native mix of sand and small stone), and crusher-run (crushed stone that contains both fine and coarse aggregate all being angular, which compact better) are the most common materials. They're both free-draining and they can both be compacted very tightly. Sand is sometimes used by some folks, but as the tiny particles of stone that make up sand are mostly rounded in form, they tend to not compact as will as the others (in a sense it can be like trying to compact ball bearings). And there's crushed stone, which has a variety of sizes (usually 1/2" to 3/4" or larger) but no finer particles. It can be compacted well enough, and it's free-draining. But as it has only larger particles, finer material placed on top will eventually filter down into it, allowing the surface to drop.

I like crusher-run myself. A vibratory plate compactor (the size of a lawn mower) can compact it quite well.

For mortar set stonework, bluestone or granite, a cast-in-place concrete base is best. If I were doing it, I'd place some standard concrete reinforcing wire right at mid-depth in that slab to keep it from moving when it cracks, and it will crack. On top of that slab, the mortar setting bed can be installed, and then the stones set in the bed.

As to the best stone...it's a toss-up and really has more to do with your taste than the strength of the stone. Both bluestone and granite are noteworhty in their ability to endure New England winters. Bluestone will be found most often in a 1 1/2" thickness, although thicker is available (for extra cost). I've found the standard thickness to be quite adequate. But note that bluestone, while cut to exacting sizes for length and width, will not be entirely uniform in thickness, so if you're picking it yourself, I'd tend to stay on the thicker side, at least 1 1/2 inches. Same with granite. The length and width of the individual stones will depend on 2 things...your design, and the strength of the installer. The bigger the stone, the heavier and harder to handle. If set correctly, the size should not be a concern for movement. The largest regularly available size in bluestone is 30"x30". I'm guessing that granite is about the same. Sizes change in 6" increments. Your 'pattern' will determine size.

AS to whether mortar is better than dry-set, it really depends on quality of installation. I've seen mortared installations come apart quite readily when the slab and setting beds weren't constructed properly. And I've seen some that will last forever. Same with dry-set. If the base is set on uncompacted soils that are very wet, it doesn't matter what you do on top. It will come apart. I've also seen dry-set installations that will last a very long time.

Dry-set installations can see weeds growing in the joints, as weeds will grow anywhere. They will also need periodic addition of joint materials as the weather and foot traffic can move them. Concrete installations may be more costly.

The 'look' is what you should determine first. Then find a competent contractor to work.

Regarding the movement of irregular bluestone, it could be a year or two, or a week or two before you see movement. As with the information above, bed preparation and compaction will be the keys.Making sure that the stones are completely bedded without air pockets beneath them is also important. Going with a thicker and heavier stone will also help to prevent the stones from moving due to foot traffic. Thickness at the edge is a good thing to look for in a stone, too. The more the edge maintains the thickness of the stone the better.

As for tumbled pavers, I can't say, for I've never used the...and probably won't. They're just not my style.

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clipped on: 07.05.2007 at 06:05 pm    last updated on: 07.05.2007 at 06:05 pm

RE: Posting a photo: Can someone post directions? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: claire on 05.08.2007 at 11:54 am in New England Gardening Forum

The easiest way I know is to use tinypic.com - directions were posted by mightyanvil as follows:

"RE: Exterior options. (Follow-Up #3)
posted by: mightyanvil on 07.31.2006 at 10:05 am in Building a Home Forum

To post a photo:
go to http://tinypic.com (it's free and no sign up is required)

select "browse" and go find your jpg, png, gif, or tif photo file and select it (it will be automatically downsized to 250K)

select the "upload image" button

copy the contents of the "HTML" window and paste it into the text part of your message.

Now preview you message. If you can see the photo, submit the message

If you are unsure of yourself try all of this first at the "test forum" which is linked at the bottom of the main forum page. You might have to play with the dimensions of the original photo to keep the downloaded version from being too large since that sometimes stretches the text of all messages to the right (possibly off the screen)"

Claire

Here is a link that might be useful: TinyPic Site

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clipped on: 05.08.2007 at 11:55 am    last updated on: 05.08.2007 at 11:56 am

RE: What % of total cost is 'dried in?' (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: worthy on 05.01.2007 at 04:57 pm in Building a Home Forum

Here is the breakdown used by the appraisal firm reporting to the National Bank of Canada:

TRADE: % completion

1. Foundation & Backfill 13

2. Beam, Post, Joist, Subfloor 6

3. Framing, Sheathing, Roof 13

4. Doors & Windows 5

5. Brick, Stucco Siding 11

6. Rough Electrical 2

7. Rough Plumbing 3

8. Heating, Ducts or Pipes 2

9. Insulation 2

10. Basement Floor 3

11. Heating Equipment 7

12. Lath, Plaster, Drywall 7

13. Finished Floor 3

14. Finished Electrical 1

15. Finished Plumbing 4

16. Finished Carpentry 11

17. Painting 5

18. Landscaping, Walks, Driveway 2

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clipped on: 05.04.2007 at 03:34 pm    last updated on: 05.04.2007 at 03:35 pm

RE: Soil pH Testing for Garden Fair (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: kimmsr on 02.11.2007 at 04:24 pm in Soil Forum

There are a number of these simple soil tests that people can use in addition to the nutrient and soil pH tests done by a soil lab and this list is one of them. Rather than using a pH meter that may not give accurate readings and would not tell people why their soil is at the pH is is at, perhaps a demonstration of these would be better adn would get people actually looking at the soil they have, hopffully.

1) Structure. From that soil sample put enough of the rest to make a 4 inch level in a clear 1 quart jar, with a tight fitting lid. Fill that jar with water and replace the lid, tightly. Shake the jar vigorously and then let it stand for 24 hours. Your soil will settle out according to soil particle size and weight. A good loam will have about 1-3/4 inch (about 45%) of sand on the bottom. about 1 inch (about 25%) of silt next, about 1 inch (25%) of clay above that, and about 1/4 inch (about 5%) of organic matter on the top.

2) Drainage. Dig a hole 1 foot square and 1 foot deep and fill that with water. After that water drains away refill the hole with more water and time how long it takes that to drain away. Anything less than 2 hours and your soil drains too quickly and needs more organic matter to slow that drainage down. Anything over 6 hours and the soil drains too slowly and needs lots of organic matter to speed it up.

3) Tilth. Take a handful of your slightly damp soil and squeeze it tightly. When the pressure is released the soil should hold together in that clump, but when poked with a finger that clump should fall apart.

4) Smell. What does your soil smell like? A pleasant, rich earthy odor? Putrid, offensive, repugnant odor? The more organic matter in your soil the more active the soil bacteria will be and the nicer you soil will smell.

5) Life. How many earthworms per shovel full were there? 5 or more indicates a pretty healthy soil. Fewer than 5, according to the Natural Resources Conservation Service, indicates a soil that is not healthy.

NOTES:

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clipped on: 02.11.2007 at 05:29 pm    last updated on: 02.11.2007 at 05:29 pm

RE: so what is blooming in your garden this week 11/27 (Follow-Up #49)

posted by: claire on 12.06.2006 at 10:03 am in New England Gardening Forum

Thanks, Dee. "proud in defiance" has overtones of Scarlett O'Hara shaking her fist against a winter storm. An alternative would be "proud but shivery" which would bring up images more in the line of Ogden Nash. I can almost hear Garden Webbers silently screaming ENOUGH OF THE POETRY!.

Yesterday I started spreading compost on the beds, and I put up the first of the Christmas lights outdoors. The ground is freezing up, at least to the point where walking on wood chips is no longer soft and bouncy.

This is way early for me since I was raised in the tradition of tree and lights up for Christmas Eve and take them down on Epiphany. I continued that tradition for years in an apartment in NYC, but this new neighborhood likes to get lit early in December.

Claire

NOTES:

yet another revision
clipped on: 12.06.2006 at 10:04 am    last updated on: 12.06.2006 at 10:04 am

RE: so what is blooming in your garden this week 11/27 (Follow-Up #46)

posted by: claire on 12.04.2006 at 08:40 am in New England Gardening Forum

Thanks, kt. It probably doesn't matter to anyone but me, but I modified the Camellia Haiku after waking up in the middle of the night and fussing over the word "glares". I decided "proud" is more in fitting with the tradition of the Old South. Therefore:

Ode to the First Camellia of Winter

Blossom of the south
opens to northern winter,
proud in defiance

Claire

NOTES:

changed "glares" to "proud"
clipped on: 12.04.2006 at 08:41 am    last updated on: 12.04.2006 at 08:42 am

RE: so what is blooming in your garden this week 11/27 (Follow-Up #43)

posted by: claire on 12.03.2006 at 05:01 pm in New England Gardening Forum

OK, with apologies to all real Haiku poets out there:

Ode to the First Camellia of Winter

Blossom of the south
opens to northern winter,
glares in defiance


Claire

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clipped on: 12.03.2006 at 05:42 pm    last updated on: 12.03.2006 at 05:42 pm

Leaf truck takes a dump

posted by: starterdude on 11.24.2006 at 09:52 am in Soil Forum

After three years of composting the leaves I screen the the compost and use it in my soil mix for my nursery.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

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clipped on: 11.26.2006 at 04:30 pm    last updated on: 11.26.2006 at 04:31 pm

RE: Builder's mistake - difference between I-joists/floor trusses (Follow-Up #139)

posted by: mightyanvil on 11.06.2006 at 03:41 pm in Building a Home Forum

This is your house, not the contractor's. The permit is in your name because you own the property. If you replaced the contractor the permit would still be in force because it is not the contractor's permit. You have every right to call the inspector about anything that concerns you. Of course, he might want to arrange a routine inspection with the contractor because it is more convenient and he can not show up if he wants to stop for an early beer.

But being at the inspection is not important, in fact, it may be better to not be there. Fax, eMail or overnight the engineer's report to the inspector. Better yet, have the engineer do it, as your agent, since you, as the owner, are obligated to provide the building department with proof that certain structural issues, especially changes, have been reviewed by an engineer. The report would, to some extent, remedy the contractor's failure to provide such proof to the inspector. The fact that the report mentions other non-structural code violations is a bonus for the inspector. This document would be no different than having your architect send required supplemental engineering information to the building department to document structural changes made in the field. I have done it many times but an engineer can also act as your agent in such a matter. Keep it professional.

It will help the inspector a lot if you include a plan with the problem areas marked and keyed to the text.

Things are going to get tough between you and this contractor because money is involved. Avoid face to face confrontations. Use the engineer as much as possible as your agent. Ignore the cost. These disputes can onlly be resolved by negotiation since they are rarely a slam dunk for one side or the other; it's just too complicated and the contract and design documents were so poorly prepared. (You don't want to have these sloppy documents exposed to the scrutiny of a court.) Give in on issues where his mistakes caused you no loss and consider "participating" at some level in the cost of the repairs. You've got to get the project finished.

And for heaven's sake DO NOT do any work in the house yourself while he is still responsible for the construction site. You MUST keep this on a professional level. Pay him to do ALL of the work that must be done while he is on site. You need to show him that you are willing to take responsibility for your mistakes too and allow him to make a reasonable profit on that corrective work. It is highly unprofessional to usurp the roles of others and it will cost you in the long run. You are the owner; your job is to write checks and complain. Do it well.

NOTES:

Nice comments on the role of the owner in a dispute with the contractor.
clipped on: 11.06.2006 at 04:40 pm    last updated on: 11.06.2006 at 04:41 pm

RE: Exterior options. (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: mightyanvil on 07.31.2006 at 10:05 am in Building a Home Forum

To post a photo:

go to http://tinypic.com (it's free and no sign up is required)

select "browse" and go find your jpg, png, gif, or tif photo file and select it (it will be automatically downsized to 250K)

select the "upload image" button

copy the contents of the "HTML" window and paste it into the text part of your message.

Now preview you message. If you can see the photo, submit the message

If you are unsure of yourself try all of this first at the "test forum" which is linked at the bottom of the main forum page. You might have to play with the dimensions of the original photo to keep the downloaded version from being too large since that sometimes stretches the text of all messages to the right (possibly off the screen)

Here is a link that might be useful: Tiny Pic site

NOTES:

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clipped on: 10.24.2006 at 02:13 pm    last updated on: 10.24.2006 at 02:13 pm

RE: A technical question regarding GW posting (Follow-Up #13)

posted by: bob414 on 10.23.2006 at 10:06 pm in Suggestions? Forum

The less than and greater than signs are the key. To get the < type & l t ; without the spaces and to get the > type & g t ; without the signs.

NOTES:

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clipped on: 10.24.2006 at 02:10 pm    last updated on: 10.24.2006 at 02:11 pm