I am collecting milk jugs and pop bottles for next winter. I would like to ge them all cut and ready now. What tools do you feel are best for cutting them, making holes, etc. Some websites talk about slitting them, some about drilling through them, so before I purchase any tools (we don't even own a drill, LOL) I would like advice please! Thank you! Cynthia
No expensive tools necessary. I start my first cut into jugs with a utility knife, then finish with large scissors. Very easy. I poke drain holes with pointed scissors, twist a little to make holes bigger. Easy peasy.
In 4 years of doing this I haven't lost a single finger yet.
I just used a stiff bladed knife and was careful to cut "away" from me. No bandages needed yet. I will say I found it easier to draw a line with marker on the jugs to be cut. Otherwise my surgeries would end up kitty wumpus ~ LOL
I think I'll do that too - the line on the jugs. I read in another thread that a box cutter works good too. May make a trip to Menards and pick one up. Will drill holes in the top and bottom for drainage and get them ready now. I really want to keep all my fingers, LOL. I am saving boxes from Sam's to put the jugs in so they don't blow around and I look at every container I buy now as a "possibility." This is addicting.
Podster, how is the "real" Pod doing? My dog's brother is coming to visit in November...here's his photo. He's a white collie (on the right.) The left dog is a Shetland Sheepdog, totally different breed.
Hey Janet, good to hear from you and your gorgeous collie - which one is this? Blessing? I can't wait to see Han's brother again in November and also meet my God-dog, Gracie. She was used as "pit bull bait" for dog fighting - here's her story. She's mine should anything ever happen to her momma, so she's my god-dog. It'll break your heart, but she's healthy and happy now - and very loved. http://members.petfinder.org/~MO233/grace.html
Gotta go to bed - talk with you soon. Glad to see you in this venue now!
Podster, LOL, I honestly have a WHOLE refrigerator drawer full of seeds I've been buying! I could plant every inch of my lawn and still have seeds left over - nothing is in moderation - I think I need to learn self control. (NOT) If you need seeds, let me know and I'll mail you some - I have two more shipments coming this week. I just pray something will grow!
Janet, which collie is this - so gorgeous! Collies aren't just photogenic, they "are" the picture, LOL. Han goes to the groomer tomorrow so will get some new photos.
My next collie will be named Blessing - that is the best name for a collie. I grieve for you losing him - I love my Han so much!
Okay, as I mentioned above, the next obsession I'm running into with Winter Sowing - Sam's Club. They have AMAZINGly great boxes to put the milkjugs and pop bottles in this winter. Now I'm deciding which boxes to take so I can use them WSing. They are strong so the wind won't blow them away, and FREE. So, now the daughter's empty room has big boxes in it (open on all sides but hold two or three milk jugs) being filled with containers for this winter.
And the seed drawer continues to grow ... I think I'll be able to seed the whole neighborhood, LOL. It's bad. "Hello, my name is Cynthia and I'm a seedaholic."
okay I know that some where some one has shown what the jugs look like when you are done cutting them but I missed it this will be my first year doing it I have the water jugs do I cut the whole top right off then tape shut ???
Okay I dident look far enough so what is your fav way of doing it I need all the advice I can get
After three seasons of winter-sowing, I have found a sharp utility/craft knife blade and some duct tape to be my best friends when making WS containers out of milk jugs, water bottles, etc. Just slice off the top, leaving at least 4" depth on the bottom, make about four triangular drainage holes with the knife of said bottom, and then use a strip of duct tape to reattach the top of the jug/bottle on one side. Then after you have filled the jugs/bottles in winter with your potting mix and seeded it, you can tape the opposite side shut--not to be cut open until the weather warms up and you push back the tops of the containers.
Hanseycollie, you're wise to do this ahead of time (like now.) I always wait until just before I want to WS in the winter and then get mad that it all takes so long.
Cape Cod, how cool is that??? I went there once when I was a kid - got terribly sunburned and loved it!! I'm jealous of where you live...okay, done now. :*)
Thanks for the good advice. You cut yours all the way through? I'd read to leave a connecting point, but I'd really rather cut mine all the way through so I can stack them and save room in the daughter's empty room.
What kind of soil do you use CCG? And what did you sow?
Gloria, you and I are both newbies - this is a good thread for us beginners. Also, there's a good website called www.wintersown.org which is fun to read. Have you sent off for your free seeds yet with Dave's Garden? I got some amazing seeds mailed to me, it was so cool.
Quoting:You cut yours all the way through? I'd read to leave a connecting point, but I'd really rather cut mine all the way through so I can stack them and save room in the daughter's empty room. What kind of soil do you use CCG? And what did you sow?
Hi Hanseycollie! I also read about leaving a connecting point, and did so previously--this works fine. But using a tape "hinge" is easier because it's more flexible. You can bend the top all the way back--easy to sow and water. In fact, I sow first, and THEN tape the top on. And as you say, having the top separated is more convenient when stacking the containers for storage.
I've used Miracle Grow potting mix for the last several years. The type I buy has some controlled-release fertilizer mixed it. This may or may not help, but it doesn't appear to hurt.
I sow a LOT of seeds because I never believe how miraculous the WS method is. Then I always have too many seedlings to plant, so I give 'em away. STILL have a few tall teenagers to put in.
Stephanie, thank you for sharing the link - your blog is amazing - very creative - am anxious to sit down and read it from beginning to end. May read it a couple dozen times from beginning to end, LOL! I put it in my favorites so I can share with other friends here that have not (like me) ever heard of WSing. I hope it works for me this winter - I have thousands of seeds I've been buying all summer from different companies. I can't wait!
I used to cross stitch in my young days, but once you hit 40, the eyes aren't as good upclose for seeing, LOL. Bifocals send me into a migraine, so I think those days are behind me. Gardening will be the hobby from hereon - and I have a feeling our house will soon start filling with plants too. All cause I'm empty nesting - loving it too! Thanks again Stephanie in Texas!
I confess I was a skeptic (I don't know why-----I've started seeds in all sorts of containers inside and out) but I got more organized last year and while I only started three containers, all grew, the echinacea, the orange milkweed. the kniphofia even though the kniphofia was probably planted to late and is still grass sized----it may not survive the winter planted out. I may do some milk jugs but I've been buying grapes in plastic containers already with holes top and bottom---------however we have eaten a lot of grapes and Herself is complaining about the clutter of plastic containers on the back porch!!--------------------Weedy
Oh my gosh, Janet, I am afraid to get them out. I have like 20,000 black eyed susan seeds - I mean, why buy 50 when you can get them value priced for 20,000? LOL! When I get time, I'm going to make a spreadsheet so I know what I'll be sowing by container. I know I don't have 149 different varieties, as our soil is pure clay and only easy plants will grow.
I worked in my passed mother in law's garden this weekend to clean it up for the winter. It's been neglected for four years. The Iowa soil was amazing - I mean, I wanted to cry it was so beautiful! Gardening would be a breeze if it wasn't in clay - when I pull a weed, I pull out about a pound of clay with it and then have to pack the hole shut. No wonder everything rots in the ground, LOL. Next year I may live in Iowa with my DH's dad so I can tend to the farmhouse and its upkeep, LOLOLOLOL!!! I can dream about soil like that!
How are you? How are the collies doing? Han is a mess - he so needs a good grooming. Poor boy.
girl, you might be on to something by living in Iowa,,, just think not only how easy to garden, but think of how many collies you could take on...rofl... All that wide open space just begs for collies on the farm.
Don't worry so much about the clay, that is what I garden on. What you have to do is build up, do nothing but raised beds. It is very labor intensive at first with getting the beds created, but then it is a breese. Never walk inside your beds, always make paths within wide beds, this helps to keep the soil from getting compacted. Weeding is a dream... I know I'm nuts, I love to weed.
I'll get back on later tonight, have to get ready for work...
Meadowyck Collies, is wagging tails hello to yall.
I think whatever won't make it in clay will be taken to Iowa. Oh my gosh, Janet, I wanted to cry with that soil it was so beautiful. Real Iowa farmsoil, whoa... I can't let Han off his leash on the farm because of the electric fencing - he doesn't know not to chase a bull or run into the fence, ouch! I also love to weed, I don't think we're nuts, we're just odd maybe? Here's my first garden - all in clay but I'm proud of it!
Stupid ? but I'll ask it anyway because maybe there are other Newbies that wanted to ask it too. How do we know what seeds to plant uncovered or covered with soil? Will it tell us on the seed packages? For those of you who buy those large amounts of seed, where or how do you store that much? Do you use all of them in your flowerbeds or buy that much to package up for seed exchanges? If you still have a bag of the bulk seeds you ordered, can you post a pic for us to see? It is hard to imagine 20,000 seeds. I have rec'd starting seeds from 3 generous people and I'm so appreciative so was thinking about ordering some seeds from cheapseeds or Swallowtail so I can share with others too. I am waiting for several flower/seed catalogs to arrive.
I don't bother with that much either. I found that in all the snow and ice, most seeds just heave out of the soil to the surface anyway. For tiny seeds I just sprinkle on top of soil. For bigger ones like zinnia or marigold I stick individual seeds barely into the top of the soil. And when you get right down to it, when I did try to cover the seeds, I couldn't tell if I'd sprinkled the equivilent of half the width of the seed or whatever it is . Who can tell 1 mm from 2mm?
I think a really important thing to remember when doing the ws is to do as close to what nature would be doing. so if a particular plant spreads by the seeds just being blow around, then don't worry so much about that seed being covered by so much soil... while other do take some intervention from us then those would need some soil cover...
I read in one of these threads to fill each jug with about 2 1/2" of potting soil - to put potting soil in the bottom and then top that with a layer about a half inch thick of Jiffy Seed starting mix or similar. They said it seems to help when there is too much moisture.
Another dumb question - on each milkjug, I drilled four holes around the top and four in the bottom for drainage. I just saw a photo of a milkjug that had more than twice that many. Do I need to drill more holes for water & drainage?
I have three friends who will WS with me this year, so I don't want us all disappointed if we do it wrong! :^(
I never drilled holes in the top of the jugs last year. I just left the lids off. With rain and condensation, they were fine. As a result, I should think your holes will be fine. Or perhaps you might try some both ways and see which works better. A double blind study... lol
more holes for the bottom for sure, I'm putting in about 25 holes in the bottom of each of mine. I'm using a ice pick for the holes, so mine aren't that big. Drainage is very important as some seeds won't make it if they are sitting in frozen water.
I use seed starter mix only in mine. You need good drainage for the best results is my understanding.
Podster, you must have worked in clinical studies before - LOL - my husband does that for a living. How is the "real" Pod doing? Meadowyck, you need to see Podster's gorgeous dog - post photos! Podster, Meadowyck is a collie mom too.
Looks like I'll be drilling more holes in the bottom. I like to drill so no biggie! I have about 75 containers done so far so will turn 'em all over and drill, drill, drill. I won't worry about the top then - the four holes and lid off should be sufficient?
PS I have four friends that want to do it so I'm making a lot of jugs - we're gonna have a BYOS (bring your own soil) party. I have enough seeds for an army to plant, LOL.
Quoting:PS I have four friends that want to do it so I'm making a lot of jugs - we're gonna have a BYOS (bring your own soil) party. I have enough seeds for an army to plant, LOL.
Cynthia, that is a brilliant IDEA! I have some friends who are asking about WS-- and I have lots of jugs and seeds. . . why not have a BYOSoil party and help get them started!! And get me going, as well.
Way to go Cynthia on starting a new idea for parties...LOL
Lily of the Nile is the name of the plant that you liked.
Do you want me to send ya some...? You will need to start the seeds now and baby them along inside until it is warm enough to plant and maybe you might get some blooms this year. It isn't hardy in my zone or yours so I would suggest you plant it in a planter that you could overwinter inside your house. This plant is so beautiful. I just love it, I was sad that Lowes didn't carry it again this year so I could have it in my garden this past season. But I'm going to start some seeds after Christmas and see what luck I have with growing them.
Yes, I would love some seeds and I'd be glad to start them inside. I saw your facebook entries so I'll hop over to FB and give you my address, etc.
And I think a BYOS party is going to be a fun idea. I mean, who doesn't have more seeds than they know what to do with? I really want the jugs to be perfect, though, so none of us are disappointed. Tomorrow, off to the store to buy a new drill - I was borrowing one but think I need my own. Yes for me!
Merry Christmas friends! Here's the real Santa and his wife. (The problem is the costumes fit, LOL)
Oh my gosh, Buddy is gorgeous! What is it about Buddy's that makes them so fantastic? My God-collie is named Buddy and I'll post his photo.
I bought a Dremel for the milk jug holes - oh my - it's amazing! I just did about 40 cartons in no time - drilling holes on the top, bottom and then for the twist ties. I even used it to slice between the twist tie holes so I can use the utility knife to cut through back to the handles.
And best news, doggie toenails with a Dremel, woohoooo! Here's my Buddy.
Cool "Buddy" photos. And I really love the Christmas attire.
The dremel tool is an excellent idea for that... which tip or bit did you find worked best?
Yes, Pod has some herding instinct ~ the muscled hindquarters and the bobbed tail which throws everyone as he favors a Shepherd with his ears up. He gets frustrated trying to herd the cats, Stretch and myself when we walk. What astounded me was when he was rescued, he seemed to be obedience trained. I learned later that a stock dog learns from a trained dog. We had a Lab that was trained so Pod picked it up quickly. He doesn't much like his photo taken so I catch as catch can. Most are not the best...
Pod's mommy, I bought a metal tip for the Dremel - it looks just like an arrow and it goes thru the plastic like nobody's business. Last night was about 30 milk cartons in a couple hours! Then I bought an attachment that makes it like a lil saw, so I cut through the cartons to make a slip to begin with to cut them in half. The best part is I used the lil saw to cut the Sam's Club boxes down so they aren't so tall around the milk jugs. It made the kitchen smell like my dad's wood shop used to smell - brought back some sweet memories of my late father. :^)
And Pod is darling - love the lack of tail! Han's being interviewed Tuesday for the local newspaper as a therapy dog. I bet Pod is smart. I'll have to scan his article and show you ladies. Podster, are you on Facebook? Janet (Meadowyck) and I share photos on FB, it's fun.
I guess since I started this thread, I can kidnap it for a bit, LOL.
No to FB ~ DG uses up more time than I should spare. LOL
I really admire you and your Hans for the therapy effort. A few years back my husband was in ICU and a couple came thru with two large German Shepherds. They were so well behaved and so appreciated. I'm sure you are told that often but thank you so much for your time and effort.
Love the Christmas attire Hans and I hope you get some goodies in your "stocking"?!!
He is amazing. He seems to know he needs to be extra gentle and kind, and he walks around the walkers/wheelchairs/oxygen - whatever is in the way - up to the bed so they can see him. I really want to take him more often after the first of the year as it's so much fun to see how people light up when they see him. Just like that... you remember those two german shepherds. How much of an impression did they make?
He might have a new chewbone or two in his stocking. Me, I want a Menard's or Lowe's gift card!
Please go slow with have too many more days of therapy, one thing that folks don't realize about our therapy dogs is that the work really affects them, talk with your local group, most therapy dogs don't do more the 2-3 days a month. If more days than that you will start to see a decline in the dog. When I did therapy work at the nursing home I had four collies I used, 1 dog per week. It is an unseen feeling that our dogs are able to pick up those people who need them the most, but our dogs are very sensitive to the needs of the elderly or sick children and over a long period of time the dog will start to have health issues which comes from dealing with the sick.
So I know you love the work as I do and being able to bring some joy to those who aren't out and about anymore is a wonderful joy, but try working some other dogs into the routine.
Best thing is to really work closely with your local therapy dog group.
Yes, I take Han once/week for an hour and that seems to be plenty for him. We went once and it was three hours - wayyyy too long as he was worn out - so now we only do one floor which takes an hour. He does great and seems to love that hour - though he sleeps the rest of the day! He especially likes the elevator rides now as he gets treats while we're in the elevator - and we go outside to run a couple minutes after his first half hour.
I don't know if we have a local therapy dog group here, I just took him thru numerous dog training courses and he's just a natural fit. I can't join another group right now, lol, as I'll be starting Master Gardener classes in a couple months - to add on to my existing schedule.
I'll be volunteering in the afternoons now on Tuesdays to take the resident shih tzu around to all the rooms. She lives at the facility and is used to being handled 24/7. She's also a rescue - how cool is that?
Oh, and there's one gentleman that I'll take Han to see more often as he's alone, no family, and loves Han and the company. Very sweet man, breaks my heart that he lost his wife and can't live alone now. Sweet sweet man - my hubby's gonna start visiting him too. :^)
Oh you lucky gal to get into master gardener classes, I tried last year but my boss wouldn't let me change my work hours so I could attend the day class on Wednesday and if the way the weather gets from Jan - April up here I wasn't about to be going to thursday night classes cause they were an hour away from home and not get home till 10 or 11 at night in snow or ice... not this old girl...LOL
I'll be right there with ya gal..
Cynthia you and your 4 legged are such a blessing to your area.
I can't wait to see Han's article - I have four friends who have agreed to share their dogs and am working on more. I can't imagine being in a nursing home w/o a dog, sooooo sad.
Guess what? I can go to our local Starbucks and pick up 25 milk jugs / day!!! They go thru 70 a day so if I go twice/day, I can get my few hundred in a few days, LOL. Going to have to increase the number of friends at my BYOS party in January!!!
Wish you lived closer so our kids could play. How about looking for a job in the KC area? We have a long growing season too!
Kansas City is a nice town and it's not like St. Joseph (where we actually live) which is about 20 years behind culture. It would be nice to have another collie mom close - and you could come to my BYOS parties! Then, I could love on your Saint!