1. Women skiers, this is the place for you -- an online community without the male-orientation you'll find in conventional ski magazines and internet ski forums. At TheSkiDiva.com, you can connect with other women to talk about skiing in a way that you can relate to, about things that you find of interest. Be sure to join our community to participate (women only, please!). Registration is fast and simple. Just be sure to add webmaster@theskidiva.com to your address book so your registration activation emails won't be routed as spam. And please give careful consideration to your user name -- it will not be changed once your registration is confirmed.
    Dismiss Notice

Gardening

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Discussions' started by artistinsuburbia, Apr 22, 2015.

  1. artistinsuburbia

    artistinsuburbia Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Messages:
    642
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Anyone out there like to play in dirt? I have some asparagus that volunteered from a neighbor's vegetable garden. I transplanted it in the fall to more desirable location and alas there are shoots. I have enough to cook one serving. Anyone know if I should cut these back now? Gardening wisdom of other things says cut it, but thought I'd better check.

    Just cut back all of my shrubs and prepped all my beds. Found a fabulous alternative to roundup....organic clove oil based weed killer...who would've thought it. Having one heck of a time with Canadian thistle. This seems to be working at the moment...
     
  2. surfsnowgirl

    surfsnowgirl Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2013
    Messages:
    4,543
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I love to play in dirt. Plan to head to the local nursery in a couple weeks to buy a few things. DH usually does this stuff but I want to take on growing things myself to occupy myself a little bit this summer. I will consider it ski off season therapy.

    I am a gardening newbie so I don't have any advice on if you should cut your plant back or not, surely others will. Good luck :smile:
     
    artistinsuburbia likes this.
  3. alicie

    alicie Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2014
    Messages:
    399
    Location:
    Scotland
    I like to play in dirt, mainly the getting muddy part though. I grow strawberrys, well I'm trying to, I always seem to kill them off. I killed the last lot off as I planted the seeds in August and the plant grew fine but then I thought you didn't need to water them over winter as they hibernate, I know how utterly ridiculous that sounds but seemed sensible at the time. I really want bramble bushes and rapper berry bushes but I'm sure where I'd put them. The thing with growing foodstuffs is the dog can very carefully pluck the fruit off, it's a nightmare.
     
  4. artistinsuburbia

    artistinsuburbia Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Messages:
    642
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Well I haven't tried strawberries, but I do have a bramble patch. I only get about five-eight cups of black raspberries from it. It's about 8 years old now. they like dappled shade and a lot of water, so you must be very careful in choosing the location. Not enough sun, they die, too much sun, they die. I get a lot of yield in years where it rains a lot, not so much in drought years. then there is the issue of birds. I won't net because ultimately they reseed them in the wild around here. In fact, just dug out a volunteer in a garden that's less than two years old. bramble growing right at the base of a tree, in which birds perch frequently...so I can't be greedy and not share, they eventually give back.

    what kind of dog? Mine is not much interested in destroying the garden....we've trained her to chase the groundhogs and bunnies away...she gets plenty of treats for that. I also keep her out of the vegetable garden with a fence. It'll be a bad day when the groundhogs and bunnies realize her invisible fence doesn't allow her in the actual garden.
     
  5. geargrrl

    geargrrl Angel Diva

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Messages:
    4,812
    Location:
    Eastern WA
    I've been doing perrenials for years and have massive beds. I'm venturing into veggies just a bit.
     
    artistinsuburbia likes this.
  6. alicie

    alicie Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2014
    Messages:
    399
    Location:
    Scotland
    Brambles grow very well here but I don't think my garden has the space, it's a good sized garden for the UK but it's not exactly big. I tend to just go bramble picking in autumn, it's completely free and easier than growing them. I think having raspberries would be easier, not quite so prickly. I don't think we really get black raspberries here. When I say brambles I'm referring to blackberries, I forget most other people don't call them that.

    It's a cockapoo. It doesn't dig or anything like that but if I put any fruit plant on the ground it carefully picks the fruit off when it's ripe. I need to get a raised bed but I'd need to remove gravel and we need to replace part of the fence first, then it can't get to them. I also no longer take it bramble picking as last time in its quest to eat fruit it got stuck in the damn bush. I think it would do most things for food. id like a raised bed by next summer so I can grow stuff with less chance the dogll get them.
     
  7. artistinsuburbia

    artistinsuburbia Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Messages:
    642
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    he/she just likes fruit! just have to plant more to accommodate. lol.

    brambles are any berry grown on a prickley vine. I think technically they have to be part of the rose family though... but gardening websites usually include black berries, black raspberries, red raspberries, etc. Black raspberries grow wild here, if you can find them. black berries do as well and most people ingnore them for scrub/weeds. so you could pick til your hearts content on those.
     
  8. alicie

    alicie Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2014
    Messages:
    399
    Location:
    Scotland
    I think brambles are the blackberry bush, I've just always called the fruit brambles too. Bramble and apple crumble is the best. How can you ignore brambles they're the best. I don't think I've ever had a black raspberry. I like that America has different coloured raspberries.

    He'd probably eat as many as I'd plant, haha.
     
    artistinsuburbia likes this.
  9. SkiBilly

    SkiBilly Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2014
    Messages:
    227
    Location:
    Australia, except when I'm in Canada.
    I love gardening...it's full time in Australia (obviously no snow). We mainly have to worry about plants dying or getting distressed in the heat of summer instead! I wouldn't know where to begin with plants in the northern hemisphere....
     
    artistinsuburbia likes this.
  10. altagirl

    altagirl Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2007
    Messages:
    6,879
    Location:
    Utah
    My blackberries are kind of a mess. They get partial shade and always start out awesome, but then the heat hits and the flowers and berries all drop off. I manage to get a few handfuls every year, but not much more than that.
     
  11. BackCountryGirl

    BackCountryGirl Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Messages:
    917
    Location:
    Bethel, ME
    I'm a pretty intense gardener. Just love it. I have an asparagus bed and the prevailing wisdom is not to cut anything the first year; cut sparingly the second; and begin your harvest the 3rd. To be honest, though, I've only ever planted roots and haven't had volunteers. Asparagus need heavy manure in early spring. They also should be planted in their own bed, that has been carefully prepared to be weed free. Otherwise, the weeds will make it really hard to cultivate. Asparagus plants can last a good 10-12 years.

    I grow mostly herbs, cukes, lettuces, summer and winter squash, beans, peppers, peas, garlic, onions, kale, spinach, chard. I used to have an acre garden; now I have 6 pretty good-sized raised beds. I've given up on the stuff that doesn't taste any better whether I grow it or someone else does or stuff that attracts bugs. Thus, no broccoli, cabbage, corn, or potatoes for me! I love growing special things that you can't find in stores -- real tiny carrots or purple ones, funky super spicey peppers, heirloom tomatoes, tiny tomatillos, purple string beans. I also have high and low bush blueberries. I make alot of pickles and chutneys and salsas and jellys/jams.

    I've been doing flowers forever, too. So, if you've got specific questions, I may be able to help.
     
    TeleChica likes this.
  12. artistinsuburbia

    artistinsuburbia Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Messages:
    642
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    @BackCountryGirl, it's technically the third year. They volunteered two years ago under a tree in my front yard...birds again I would assume? I left them until the latter portion of last year where I dug up the largest one at the end of the season and moved it to a better location, just in another garden bed. I grow some of my veggies/berries right in with the household shrubs and that's where these ended up. Anyway, it was a root blob about the size of a tea cup plate, so clearly, it had been there awhile. the other was in a place that I was ok with so I left it. both are doing very well. I only use mushroom mulch in my gardens, which is traditionally pure manure that has been used to grow mushrooms, then when changed out, sold as compost. There are usually still chunks of manure in it. Everything grows wild in that stuff! I usually use organic preen as a pre-emergent on my beds. Doesn't eliminate as much as the chemical version, but I'm not into chemicals. And I figure 10% weeds is better than 100% weeds! I keep herbs and some tomatos and peppers near the driveway which is also near the kitchen. My blueberry bushes are there also. We share a small fenced garden with the neighbors because the amount of zucchini and cucumbers that we were able to grow was absolutely crazy. Holy cow, an acre! that's my whole yard!!

    I also have a strange addiction to decorative plantings as well. I over wintered mandevilla this year since it was so spendy to buy as an annual. Not a very neat houseplant and I lost 30% to miniscule yellow aphid critters, despite constant spraying with dish soap solution. Lots of tulips in bloom right now, as well as the mini rhododendrons. I'm worried that my sweet bay magnolia and my hinoki cypress didn't survive the harsh winter...we had a lot of at zero or below zero days.

    @SkiBilly the northern hemisphere is quite diverse, what I can grow here vs. what my friends in Atlanta can grow and my friends in Orlando can grow, stark contrast in all areas. California a whole another planet.

    @altagirl have you pruned them? Something new I'm learning, we just pruned for the first time two years ago. I got a lower yield last year, but this is supposed to be the year....I'll let you know if it worked.
     
  13. altagirl

    altagirl Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2007
    Messages:
    6,879
    Location:
    Utah
    I have to prune them back quite a bit because of the area they are in (they are on the back of the house and along the entry to the shed). I definitely think it's the heat though - I get just LOADS of flowers and berries but only a few ripen. The rest - it hits around 100 degrees the first time of the year and it's like the flowers and developing fruit literally burn up and turn brown and crispy. The leaves still look lush and green through the year, but once the flowers and developing berries die, that's it for fruit. I always think if I just water them more, I might get more to ripen, but no luck so far. They've been there probably 5 years now. I think they just need more cool shade and water than they're going to get here in our desert climate.

    I've definitely found some things that work here and others don't. My arugula - I use this heirloom spicy variety that I grew from seed probably 6+ years ago and it goes to seed there are literally thousands of tiny arugula plants in and around that raised bed. And several of the big plants come back every year as well - I dug one up to give to a friend and the root was the size of my wrist. Crazy!

    Beans and sugar snap peas do well as long as I water them well. Cherry tomatoes do well on one end of my garden but not the other - the plants go crazy and end up 8' tall in one area and burn to a crisp a couple feet away. Nothing but mint will really tolerate the heat in that spot.

    And I've had kale and chard that grow really well but get SO MANY bugs that it's just not worth the hassle. And jalapeƱo peppers work, but full sized bell peppers don't seem to make it through our growing season. They seem to take an eternity and by the time they get full size it usually freezes and I'm lucky to get one full sized bell pepper. Not worth it.

    And I've done beets and carrots, which are delicious (the boring bugs get the beet greens, but the beets are fine) but both seem to grow so slowly. I threw some carrot seeds along the back wall of the planter my lettuce is in - we'll see if anything happens. There is nothing like the taste of home grown rainbow carrots straight out of the garden.
     
    artistinsuburbia likes this.
  14. Kimmyt

    Kimmyt Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,858
    Location:
    Louisville, CO
    I have gotten more into gardening the past few years. Currently I have four raised beds and a bunch of pots with plans to eventually add a few more beds and convert a corner of my hard into a fenced in garden. Two of the raised beds will hopefully be filled this weekend in time yet to plant my seedlings for the season (tomatoes, tomatillos, peppers, whatever else I fancy). The remaining two beds are filled now with garlic that I planted last fall, and a variety of cool weather plants. I've got radishes, spinach, mesclun greens and bibb lettuce heads, carrots and kale. I have to wait a few more weeks to plant my pickling cukes. I have a variety of herbs on my deck in pots and sunflowers here and there as well as a few new strawberry plants I am trying out this season.

    The asparagus sounds awesome, I've been dying to try them out but I'm still figuring out gardening out here so perennial veggies sound daunting to me unless they're cheap to plant like strawberries.
     
    artistinsuburbia likes this.
  15. surfsnowgirl

    surfsnowgirl Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2013
    Messages:
    4,543
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I miss my cockapoo, he was a sweetie. We have a problem with deer eating our stuff but we really don't have the space to put a fence around what we plant so we just plant and hope for the best. Sometimes they don't eat our stuff. They definitely like the tomatoes. Not sure what to plant this year. Tomatoes, zucchini, squash and maybe lettuce I think.
     
    artistinsuburbia and VickiK like this.
  16. Kimmyt

    Kimmyt Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,858
    Location:
    Louisville, CO
    Here is a picture of our setup. The two new beds in the back are as yet not filled. We will eventually be putting a few more beds back there and ultimately I'd like to put a fence and garden gate/trellis up over which to grow grapes since they do well out here. In the foreground you can see my soil taster hard at work.

    [​IMG]
     
  17. Perty

    Perty Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Messages:
    640
    Location:
    Sussex, UK
    Definitely need to wait for the asparagus to establish. After a good warm April here, Mr P had some for his supper this week a bit earlier than expected. Our bed has been in for about 3 years.
    Am a bit of a gardening nut myself. It's kind of in my blood, and I've always enjoyed it despite it being rather uncool when I was in my 20s and 30s. I now get to play in about an acre down in Sussex. However I am constantly doing battle with a. Weald clay..concrete in summer, sodden in winter; b marestail/horsetail (impossible to eradicate and loves the wet ground), c.bindweed (also impossible to irradicate) and d. deer which munch anything tender and leafy. We have a lovely pond around which I have Acers, primulas, hostas, iris, and other general water loving plants, The plan is to get an electric fence, then I can grow French beans in my veg beds (finally with fence in place hope they will not be clipped from the ground up to about 5 ft) , not find hostas denuded, and which will enable me to finally get the bare earth covered with summer growth. Tomatoes currently getting going in my greenhouse. Raspberries (food of the gods:smile:). Courgettes were a great success last year (zucchini to you guys).
    Re blackberries...I harvest them from hedgerows each August and make yummy blackberry whisky. Cures all known ills and lovely to have a slurp of it on a cold day in the snow up an Alp.
     
    artistinsuburbia likes this.
  18. bounceswoosh

    bounceswoosh Moderator & Angel Diva Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Messages:
    10,078
    Location:
    Colorado
    I'm starting to get a taste for gardening. Well, I have a taste for really good tomatoes, and you can't get those at the supermarket, and I'm often not around for the farmer's market.

    So far, I have pots on my deck. It gets an insane amount of sun/heat. But I met a woman who will come help me figure out how to set up a proper garden for $15/hr (WHAT??). I told her she was undercharging, but please wait till after I'd worked with her to raise prices. I'm trying to figure out how to do it with the dogs. I do NOT want dog pee in my food. Having the pots also eliminates a lot of pests, like slugs.

    Anyway, so far my plan for this summer includes heirloom tomatoes, tomatillos, cucumbers, basil, blueberries, and strawberries. I got some really pretty purple basil that I hope tastes as good as it looks:

    [​IMG]
    http://pantrygardenherbs.com/shop-for-organic-herbs/basil-varieties/basil-amethyst/
     
    VickiK and surfsnowgirl like this.
  19. Kimmyt

    Kimmyt Ski Diva Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,858
    Location:
    Louisville, CO
    I have never seen a slug out here!
     
  20. bounceswoosh

    bounceswoosh Moderator & Angel Diva Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Messages:
    10,078
    Location:
    Colorado
    What about those furry slugs? (rabbits) (I wish they were remotely afraid of the dogs)