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If you worry where to plant - make a lasagna bed ( a lot of pics)

posted by: adamark on 01.08.2011 at 05:56 pm in Winter Sowing Forum

Soon, once the green tsunami will come (and it will) we'll be worry what to do with all those plants. I had this dilemma last spring. Not so mutch about flowers but tomatoes. I grew a lot under the lights (sorry, didn't know about WSing yet). So, when they all started to come, I was wondering where I'll plant them. It was already Spring, I think late March, April. I had about 1.5 - 2 months to make a lasagna bed. Here is the story....

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I know, the brick was was not stable. It was just temporary and it did survive the season
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I started puting whatever I could gather. Old leaves, paetmost, old strow, kitchen scrups, compost, some soil, etc...
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These are my tomatoes from under the lights. This year I'm WSing for an obvious reason...
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I planted them using the "trench method"
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Basil and marigold were under those cups (they were WS'ed in those cups). I covered seedlings because I mulched the bed and wanted to protect them
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Tomatoes were great and those cucks in the corner! At the end, some of those tomatoes were almost 6-8 feet tall!

Lesson - the bed was to wide. This year, I'll make no more then 3 feet wide. Otherwise, despite my DH reservations (not that he participated in building it) it really worked!

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clipped on: 01.09.2011 at 10:36 am    last updated on: 01.09.2011 at 10:36 am

RE: Wintersowing a cottage garden.2 (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: token28001 on 12.14.2009 at 03:45 pm in Winter Sowing Forum

And for a little more background, here's the side yard the day I saw the house when it was for sale.

My first attempt at gardening in the summer of 2008. It wasn't all I had hoped for.

Finalized design with leaf mold laying out a path of green grass. Rocks from the property were added later.

So you see, in less than a year, you can have a beautiful garden.

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clipped on: 12.31.2010 at 01:38 pm    last updated on: 12.31.2010 at 01:38 pm

Wintersowing a cottage garden.

posted by: token28001 on 12.14.2009 at 09:33 am in Winter Sowing Forum

Just last year when I was a newbie, I read almost every thread in this forum. I'd stay up late at night trying to find more pictures of plants, how well this works, and so forth. I asked a lot of questions too. In the summer of 2008, I built a new bed in my side yard. I covered the existing soil with cardboard and leaf mold from the landfill. It's hard packed clay, so I needed to loosen it up a bit. Over the winter, I sowed my seeds, and planted out.

I also spent a lot of time in the cottage garden forum. There are some beautiful gardens there and wintersowing just seems to naturally go hand in hand with that type of garden. You can grow so many kinds of plants that it's hard to create a formal garden with so many choices and varieties available from seed. I wanted a cottage garden. Wintersowng made it happen.

Some things I learned from reading other peoples' blogs and posts on GardenWeb. Plant multiples. If you plant one of each plant, it tends to look like a hodgepodge. Planting multiples gives you repetition. I started with a hardy hibiscus, shastas, and rudbeckia. Then I scattered Hunks of Seedlings of various plants between those "anchor" points. Plant diagonally to the walkway, path, or street. It gives you a drifting look. Threes, fives, and sevens. Plant in odd numbers. Add in large foliage, vertical elements, mix small blooms with large gaudy blooms. Plant daylilies here and there for vertical interest. Add grasses. And shrubs. Don't be too worried about height and sizes. Cottage gardens tend to flop all over each other. If you don't like a plant, take it out. It's hard, I know. Next year, you'll sow more seeds of something you do like. Save seeds. Trade seeds. Spend time researching. Pay attention to sun exposure for the plants you're growing. Don't worry about the details of wintersowing. Provide drainage, a cover, label, and good soil. You will have some success. You will have some failure. Don't get too technical. It's supposed to be about having fun, right?

Just a few photos below of the process so you can get an idea of just how many plants you get from wintersowing. Not all plants were wintersown. Some were purchased, some were gifts, some were raised from cuttings and other means of propagation. Once you learn on technique, learn others. Plants do it in nature all the time. A stem touches the ground, gets covered with leaves, and roots to form a new plant.

December 15, 2008

February 12, 2009

February 26, 2009

March 2, 2009

March 29, 2009

April 10, 2009

May 24, 2009

June 12, 2009

June 21, 2009 - summer solstice.

July 19, 2009

On August 18, I injured myself with the lawnmower and a rock. The gardens went downhill after that. I couldn't get around much to water and rain wasn't coming as often as I needed it. Some plants thrived. Others wilted away.

August 30, 2009 - From the front porch, I was on crutches.

September 20, 2009 - the day before the official 1st day of Fall.

October 11, 2009. Lots of plants are done. Seeds collected. Seeds scattered. The garden is being put to bed for the winter.

Wintersowing works. Share your success for the newbies. Photos welcomed.

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clipped on: 12.31.2010 at 01:37 pm    last updated on: 12.31.2010 at 01:38 pm

RE: Wintersowing a cottage garden./but grooming is important (Follow-Up #14)

posted by: wendy2shoes on 12.14.2009 at 11:08 pm in Winter Sowing Forum

My sweet little bed turned into a bit of a monster. Last year wasn't so bad because we hardly had any sun, but 2008 looked like this...
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I have to cut back the bridal veil and dogwood which is nice in that it disguises the chain link, but really encroaches on the flowers. Sigh..I guess I could keep digging the bed further into the lawn...
BTW, my sea holly just looks like a thistle..none of those "steely blues" that I read about...mine is just a dull grey. I think I'm going to yank it.

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clipped on: 12.31.2010 at 01:36 pm    last updated on: 12.31.2010 at 01:36 pm

RE: For new folks who aren't sure this works (Follow-Up #15)

posted by: wendy2shoes on 12.18.2010 at 10:24 pm in Winter Sowing Forum

My very best before/after pics (1st year) Put the bottles out to where I thought they should go (ha!)
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What the bed looked like in the summer..
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Those were the days, man. Everything was so pristine and pure. Now I have shasta daisy that has decided it really needs to be 5 feet tall, coreopsis is a thug, ripped out the globe thistle (ugly), etc etc.

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My perennials need a spanking now! Big overhaul next spring! The beauty of wintersowing is, all mistakes can be corrected, with a bit of digging out, rearranging, and replanting!

It's all a learning curve, and anything is better than grass. Wintersowing makes it all affordable. All my perennial splits go off to good homes..it's a win win situation.

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clipped on: 12.25.2010 at 09:37 pm    last updated on: 12.25.2010 at 09:37 pm

RE: Ideas for inexpensive plant labels that LAST? (Follow-Up #45)

posted by: queuetue on 05.03.2008 at 12:11 pm in Frugal Gardening Forum

This isn't as frugal as most of the choices here, but my wife and I just finished a few and I thought we'd show them off. We buy cheap plant tags where we find them and decorate them with acrylic paints, then apply a few layers of sealer or varnish. It helps me get over my pre-planting obsession - letting me work with the garden even when the garden isn't workable, and giving us an excuse to play with paint. :) It also makes the garden a little more fun for visitors, and sometimes guests may join in the fun, and make a few themselves.

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awesome
clipped on: 12.22.2010 at 07:24 pm    last updated on: 12.22.2010 at 07:24 pm

RE: covering a chain link fence? (Follow-Up #10)

posted by: lilydude on 09.07.2007 at 11:32 am in Northwestern Gardening Forum

Here is a fence covered with Boston ivy, Parthenocissus tricuspidata.
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Here is a "living gate" of Boston ivy, partially open so you can see it is still moveable.
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clipped on: 11.28.2010 at 01:47 am    last updated on: 11.28.2010 at 01:47 am

What grass would look great in this flower bed?

posted by: Crocosmia_MN on 08.14.2005 at 10:46 am in Minnesota Gardening Forum

This is the bed where I put wildflowers or wildflower-ish flowers -- I was originally going for a roadside look rather than strictly a native prairie or meadow because I like the mix of different kinds of plants. I don't plant the really bad guys like Purple Loosestrife, but I wish I could.

I've been chicken so far to put in any grasses (although clearly that would make what I have look more like what you see on the side of the road here in Minnesota) -- I spend so much time pulling lawn grass OUT of my various flowerbeds!

Are there ornamental grasses that would not seed themselves or spread aggressively? Should I stick with grasses that would not be perennial here? At one point I thought about throwing some rye or wheat seeds around, the way I do with dill and bronze fennel in another bed -- would this be a disaster? Can you suggest grasses that would suit the colors and look of this bed?

The bed does get 6 hours of sun but is shaded by a very tall elm tree in the middle of the day.

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clipped on: 11.27.2010 at 11:22 pm    last updated on: 11.27.2010 at 11:22 pm

RE: Anyone have photos of Cannas mixed in with other flowers? (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: crocosmia_mn on 03.27.2006 at 10:30 am in Canna Forum

Here's a few photos of my front garden last summer, using Cannas for the first time. I now wish I had spread them out more through the bed. Also, later in the summer, their blooms towered over even the gigantic Tithonia behind them and I wondered if there is a way to get them to bloom at a shorter height, for instance by cutting off the first stalk, or if they are just programmed to bloom at a certain height no matter what.
I was pleased that several people who said they "hated Cannas" changed their minds after seeing Cannas used this way.
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I want this garden!
clipped on: 11.27.2010 at 11:14 pm    last updated on: 11.27.2010 at 11:14 pm

RE: Mini Lobata, when will it bloom? (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: bossjim1 on 09.03.2008 at 09:15 pm in Vines Forum

I took this picture on Nov. 7,2007. It's a late fall bloomer for me here in zone 9 Texas.
Jim

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clipped on: 11.27.2010 at 11:13 pm    last updated on: 11.27.2010 at 11:13 pm

RE: Endless supply of seed envelopes (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: pitimpinai on 02.06.2006 at 08:01 pm in Winter Sowing Forum

Thank you, lblack, Raney & mmcq. I am glad that you are interested in making these envelopes. Making them relaxes me. I hope you�ll enjoy making them too. They are adorable, practical and cost nothing. In our small way, we�ll take part in recycling as well.

1. Cut paper into a 3 1/2" square, wider if you need a larger envelope. I might make my next batch with a 4" square for larger seeds:
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2. Fold the square into a triangle. I forgot all the geometric terms, so please forgive me if the explanation is unclear:
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3. Fold the two flaps almost all the way to the base of the triangle:
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4. Fold the two corners of the triangle toward the center:
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5. Unfold the flaps. Place a piece of tansparent tape over the two corners as shown in the photo above. The envelope will look like this:
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Please note the base of the flaps. If the two corners of the triangle are folded a little deeper so that the flaps are not perfectly triangular, small seeds will not leak out.

6. Seeds go in between the two flaps:
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7. Fold down the flaps and tape the tip or insert it into the envelope, like so:
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I usually fold the squares up to stage 3 on the train to and from work. I do the rest at home where I have more space. It is not easy balancing all my supplies on my lap during the train ride. :-)

Have fun and please let me know how they turn out.

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clipped on: 11.20.2010 at 11:39 pm    last updated on: 11.20.2010 at 11:40 pm