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Strawbale Gardening: General Discussions - 2011 - Chapter 36

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KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

September 3, 2011
4:22 PM

Post #8791873

We've slowed down some, so let's start a new chapter.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 3, 2011
5:20 PM

Post #8791923

I'm here . digger
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 3, 2011
5:23 PM

Post #8791929

Yup, me too. Jeanette
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 3, 2011
5:27 PM

Post #8791935

How'd I sneak in in front of you , Jnette ?
Sounds like your summer is 'bout over . It is here , the leaves are turning and dropping already . We should get some rain out of the tropical storm that has hit the gulf coast . Not in Texas tho , and they need it worse than us .
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

September 4, 2011
2:06 AM

Post #8792259

Hi; guys!
just crept in from the sideline. Yes, summer is all but over. I did see some leaves starting to fall yesterday
but it was raining too as well as some wind. My tomato plants are loaded, so I have a few more days of canning. Had good luck with some peppers too so I guess I will have to make some salsa as well.
Then I am going to try drying some of the tomatoes. Hadn't done that before. So; Sally do you just slice them and dry or buzz them a bit in the food processor and dry that mess. lol
As you can tell I got up in the middle of the night. Headin back to bed though. Trying to build a 3 wheel 21 speed bike an one of those AH ha ideas came to me, so I had to write it down before I forgot it.

It's in the upper 40s tonight. Feels pretty good, so I guess we'll have a frost one of these nights.
Russ
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 4, 2011
5:26 AM

Post #8792378

Hi , Russ . On the toms, I slice them pretty thick and lay them in the dryer, not touching . They shrink down to real thin and if you cut the slices too thin , they shrink to nothing .I peel a bit of skin off the blossom end so the meat is exposed . You can then , when dried , put them in zip loc and freeze . Freezing helps keep any mould from forming later , keeps longer . Some will get dark over time , but doesn't hurt .
See, taking off for a coupla weeks didn't hurt you at all .Or the garden .
Johnny has been over at his sons all night cooking two briskets on the smoker . We pulled it over last week . If we get much rain , we'll have to leave it a few days so we can pull it uphill out of the back yard and not tear up the yard .They had brats last nite , and I'm taking baked beans today . I stayed home and enjoyed the couch and my own TV shows . He got his sons and grandsons together for a sleep over and man talk . He's the only drinker , so hope they took care of him and didn't ruin the brisket . LOL. Just kidding ! His three kids , eight grand kids , husband , wives , will be there and one wife and granddaughter could stay home . I wouldn't care .
I missed the gold miners meeting along with the annual picnic yesterday . Just too many people and food two days in a row and we have an annual "family and Friends" reunion next Sat at a dear friends farm . The women try to out cook each other and the host family will cook 100 chickens and a half a pig on an outdoor pit . Everyone comes hungry
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

September 4, 2011
6:03 AM

Post #8792411

I pulled up a lot of tomato vines that have ran their course.

My Better Boys and Lemon Boys are still producing but look tired.

Peppers still doing well.

The Ghost Peppers are living up to their reputation for being 1 of the hottest!

2nd planting of yellow squash doing well and blooming like crazy.

Russ, no 40's in the future for this area! 80's all week with 60's for lows.

With it being September, I am now ready for some Fall weather and watching the leaves change.

My hummingbirds are still wide open! They have provided us with a never-ending source of entertainment.
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 4, 2011
10:28 AM

Post #8792770

We are just starting to get ripe tomatoes Russ and Sally. But, even tho our lows are in the low 60s, and down to 40s, a fellow living close by said they had 36 the other night. So, guess it can sneak up on you any time. I am afraid we will get hit without expecting it and lose everything out there.

I got some sweet bell peppers Kent, what did you do with the ghost peppers?

Connie, how is your garden doing? What about your neighbors? How were theirs?

Yes, fall is here. We had a short season and I am dreading the winter. Every spring I say I am not spending one more winter here. But, we are still here. I am turning the heat on in the mornings already to warm the house up and it never really gets hot. We don't have any central air or A/C. Don't need it.

Well folks, gotta check out the tomatoes. BTW, Digger do you ever dry the little cherry toms? I have a lot of those. Seems like they would be good? Let me know, I do have a lot of those down there. Thanks, Jeanette
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 4, 2011
3:03 PM

Post #8793124

I have tried cutting them in half and drying , but they shrunk up to a little larger than B B's so might be good for soup or something . I'd process skin on , and make sauce or put in zip loc's to cook with .
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

September 4, 2011
4:50 PM

Post #8793282

Okay, Thick slices then it is.
I won't comment on the weeds that took over the white potatoes, for that two week excursion. But the enjoyment, out weighed any frustration of the weeds .
Oh and the Cannas that I planted " LATE " some of them are blooming, maybe just in time for a frost and then I will have to dig them up again. Next spring I will gather them up and put them right in my way, so I don't forget. lol

Wow "100 chick4ens and half a pig" that is going to be some reunion. Well if anybody goes away hungry it's their own fault right??
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

September 4, 2011
5:07 PM

Post #8793311

Jeanette: I grow the habaneros and ghost peppers just to give away to friends who like the heat!
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 4, 2011
8:24 PM

Post #8793582

LOL, with a friend like you Kent, who needs enemies. Jeanette
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 5, 2011
4:28 AM

Post #8793841

I posted some pictures on Country living forum last year . On a thread under "barn faces" I think
Edit , it's on Farm Life forum

This message was edited Sep 5, 2011 6:31 AM
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

September 5, 2011
5:24 AM

Post #8793898

OK, girls, last day to wear white!!! :-)

Thumbnail by KentNC
Click the image for an enlarged view.

digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 5, 2011
9:12 AM

Post #8794313

That's ok , Kent . You have to be thin to wear white pants or all the buldges will show . I haven't qualified for the last twenty years , so I won't miss it . LOL
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 5, 2011
9:57 AM

Post #8794386

LOL, haven't thought about that for a long time Kent. Since I retired. Actually, I never was one to worry about the BS of the "rule" makers. Sorry, that is the only word (?) I could come up with for it.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 5, 2011
1:21 PM

Post #8794672

I went out awhile ago and stuck a shovel in the ground . Altho it's drizzled all day , it was only wet down an inch and half . Need a lot more rain . maybe tonight it'll be a little heavier . Kent , I hope you're not too far below the line of moisture. Forgot to add above Jnette , I freeze everything , will be giving my jars to the kids . Let them do all that canning work .I don't put up that much anymore .
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

September 5, 2011
5:27 PM

Post #8795032

digger: we're abnormally dry on the old drought chart. Glad I had a good well to water my veggies all summer.
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 5, 2011
6:30 PM

Post #8795126

I'm finally getting some ripe tomatoes. But for all the plants I put in I sure don't have many tomatoes. Instead of bales next year I think I am going to put my plants in buckets. Might be interesting to see the difference. Will start my plants in the house with seeds and then put them in buckets in the hoophouse.

I must say tho that I had a lot more huge tomatoes this year than in past years. I doubt if they will get ripe tho. I am going to take a sharp shovel out and cut the roots to see if that will rush them. One of the fellows in the tomato forum said to do that. Whatever works.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 6, 2011
4:00 AM

Post #8795539

Yes, Kent , I'm in the boonies and have good luck . My well is 205' with 175' of water in it and I can run it all day with a sprinkler . Has never gotten low . The river is less than 1/8 mile from me and about 100' lower in elevation . I'm very fortunate.Nothing would have survived here this summer without watering .
Those toms will be good fried, Jnette , or salsa , or jelly .
All the bad weather was in the counties above us yesterday . One tornado , no serious injuries , but a lot of damage . We ended up with a slow rain that soaked into the ground with no runoff here . We had crackes in the yard here from the dry weather .

This message was edited Sep 6, 2011 6:13 AM
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

September 15, 2011
5:58 PM

Post #8810207

Well it dipped to 28 degrees last night. I covered 2 tomato plants that were loaded with nice big green maters but the rest are toast. I picked a tote of green and some were kind of pink. Think those will go into salsa. So mostly all I have left is to dig taters. Have a few apples left on the tree but they didn't amount to much this year. smallest they have ever been. and I didn't get them sprayed so they got some worms too.
How bout you Jeanette. did you get frosted out too??
Russ
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 16, 2011
8:52 AM

Post #8810931

Don't think yet. Haven't been down to see the tomatoes. Hope not, I have a lot of ripe ones I haven't picked yet. Plus a lot of green. You know Russ those " pink" ones will ripen up real good with a banana peel or piece of apple in a bag. Just a few days too. They also have a lot of flavor. I tried a couple of pretty green ones just to see a while back and they took about a week but were good.

You might try that. I made some Gazpacho the other day that was wonderful. Haven't had enough to can or anything. Might still have enough for that. But, better get out there and see. Might be counting the chickens before they hatch.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

September 16, 2011
5:15 PM

Post #8811509

I've let the pinkish ones sit and ripen before but this time I won't be doing so many as I just don't have the room. I'm making some rhubarb/strawberry jam.
then I want to put as many of the green tomatoes into salsa and I plan to try pickle some. I gave a bag full to a lady down the street and she was planning on making them into dill pickles. So thought I'd try it.
Dug up the rest of my sweet potatoes today also a few hills of the white potatoes.
That was enough to wear me out, either that or I just got lazy and took a long break.
The ground really got hard this year, at least where I didn't put down mulch.
Haven't made any plans for next year yet. although I plan to pick up some broiler chicks tomorrow
to fatten up and put in the freezer. Sounds like everything is going to go out of sight, so I'm doing what I can to at least eat. Might not be able to use the car as much, unless I get a job.
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 16, 2011
10:41 PM

Post #8811823

I have decided to freeze any tomatoes we haven't used and then can use them for sauce, Gazpacho, juice or whatever anytime in the winter that I want the nice flavor. I just put them on a cookie sheet and freeze them. Rinse them first and then I don't even peel the. After they are frozen I put them in gallon ziploc bags. Nice and easy for right now.

That is as far as I am going now. I bought 2 gallons of wild huckleberries and did the same with them. That way I can pour out as many as I need.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

September 17, 2011
5:13 AM

Post #8811960

I have a couple gallon bags of high bush cranberry, left over from 2 years ago. I'm thinking about turning into wine. I don't have any any thing to start with except the berries, so it won't happen just yet. Been thinking of doing the same with the rhubarb. Made some of that about 40 years ago, about 2" in the bottom of a glass and you were warm all over and it was sweet.
Don't know if I could repeat it or not. Probably shouldn't even try.
I have enough jellies to last another year, so really don't need more of that. Although the frost should have got the prickly pear cacti to ripen, Gary talked like he wanted to make some this year so I may help him and keep a couple jars for me.

I've tried to get huckleberries started here but haven't had much luck, may try again next year and make sure to mark where I plant them. Although I have some honey berries started and I just ordered a couple blue berry bushes.
Oh and just a note My apricots all fell off before they could ripen or even get any size to them. Hoping for better luck next year.

I may try freezing a few of the toms like you did just to try them later.
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 17, 2011
7:18 AM

Post #8812046

Russ, you know the tomatoes will not have the same texture after freezing that you want for BLTs. LOL

What is your altitude? They say the huckleberries don't grow berries on them until 3500 feet. Don't know if that is true or not. I know Raintree Nursery sells several different kinds of huckleberry bushes. As I am sure a lot of nurseries do.
Gourdbeader
Toledo, OR
(Zone 8a)

September 17, 2011
7:34 AM

Post #8812063

OMG, Kent, I wore white yesterday. I guess I not a very high class gal. Oh well, its okay as I can do what ever I like now that I am almost a senior citizen. They will just chalk it up to an age thing. eheheh
Heck I wear white all the time along with every other color except pink. Red is my signature color as is all of them in the hue, like rust, burgundy, barn red etc.
Hi everyone, haven't posted here in a while but I am still straw gardening and spreading the word. I have gotten four other folks in the area to give it a try. My strawberries are still my main crop though and that suits Phoebe just fine.
We should try and get together sometime Janett. We are pretty close.
I need to buy about 12 new bales for next year. I've had these for two and they are almost compost and I need to get my strawberries transplanted soon.

Thumbnail by Gourdbeader
Click the image for an enlarged view.

digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 17, 2011
12:35 PM

Post #8812371

Phoebe is as spoilt as one I had years ago . My Poco would turn a grapefruit half inside out and strip it bare . My Gertrude ate watermellons down to the rind . Oh , these fond memories we all have of our past loves .
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

September 17, 2011
5:19 PM

Post #8812632

Jeanette; I like soups! Tomatoes will just about round out most any soup that I make. I even like the Navy diet soup. About the same as Dolly's 3 day diet soup.
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 17, 2011
7:46 PM

Post #8812809

Ok Russ, I am going to email you a best ever soup recipe in case I haven't sent it before. My sister and BIL in CA love it soooo much that they use up their tomatoes making it and freeze it for winter. I could not believe all the froze. He went to the store and bought 4 more containers after already filling several quart containers all to fill with that soup.

You will love it. Jeanette
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

September 18, 2011
5:48 AM

Post #8813139

Jnette, post it on the recipe forum under What's for dinner? And Russ you can post those recipes too . Only have to type them once . Please !
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

September 27, 2011
4:43 PM

Post #8827054

Thought I'd give just a quick update on my garden.

2nd season squash doing pretty well. Gonna do 2nd season cukes next year, too.

Peppers still producing well.

The Ghost Peppers have exceeded my wildest expectations - in production and the HEAT!! lol

Got'em from www.totallytomato.com - great site and catalog

Gonna build some more raised beds for my cukes next year. I've had them sprawl all these years. Going to trellis them next year. Tired of reaching over into a dbl row. Good friend, retired from NC State Univ. Horticultural Dept says studies show that trellised cukes produce more.

Planting very few heirloom tomatoes next year. The heat and diseases take too much of a toll to waste space in my garden.

Probably just going with Better Boys, Yellow Boys, and some Cherokee Purples (as my only heirloom).

Even my beloved Mexico Midgets have gotten diseased too quickly the last 2 years, so I'm giving up on them, too.

The South is H E Dbl L on heirloom tomatoes! LOL

That's about it for now
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 27, 2011
5:16 PM

Post #8827087

Kent, good update except that you didn't tell us what you did with those Ghost peppers!!

Jeanette
Gourdbeader
Toledo, OR
(Zone 8a)

September 27, 2011
8:44 PM

Post #8827352

I have just given up on tomatoes. It seems like we just don't have the quality growing season and when they finally do get going they just taste mushy or aren't good at all. I will just stick to my strawberries, sugar snap peas, herbs , geraniums, nasties, and zucchinis. I did plant some Rhubarb this year not in the bales but so that I can bake my strawberry rhubarb pies. Can you grow rhubarb in the bales. Seems like one of those things that you don't want to have to transplant every couple of years.
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

September 27, 2011
9:49 PM

Post #8827391

I wouldn't think the bales would last long enough for Rhubarb. But then I didn't think strawberries would do good in them either. Not that they wouldn't do good in them, just that the strawbales wouldn't hold up long enough for them.

Wonder why your tomatoes haven't done well. Amazingly enough this has been my best year for growing tomatoes. Isn't that something? In July I was singing the blues thinking I was not going to get even a green one on, and they have been so wonderful this year, even tho this has been an even shorter growing season. Go figure.

We did put the plastic back on the hoophouse over the weekend and it has started raining. But, it very easily could get down to frost, or even freezing any time. It was 33 last night about 50 miles south of us. But, they are out in the open with no mountains, hills, or trees and we have all of those for protection.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

September 28, 2011
4:20 AM

Post #8827475

I planted in the dirt this year, as I wasn't going to be home in July. Had many weeds to show for it too. But cleaned up most of the garden when we got home.
My hybrid tomatoes did not do very well, however the old standby ( Rutgers ) did very well. Wish I had setup a hoop house, as many nice lush big green ones have now been through several nights of 28 to 30 degrees. Oh well, I did can some and made some salsa. Even took some of the green ones in to ripen as well as make green salsa too. I had some to give to friends as well so I am still satisfied with this years tomatoes.
I am slowly cutting back though as I am putting in more permanent things such as blue berries, grapes, cherries, apricots and a few other fruit trees. Think I will be happy with buying frozen veggies ( peas, carrots, beans and such but will still raise tomatoes, I had a hard time believing the farmers market was getting $3.00 per lb. for tomatoes.
Gourdbeader
Toledo, OR
(Zone 8a)

September 28, 2011
7:09 AM

Post #8827653

I have not bought any new strawberry plants in 3 years. I just keep transplanting the starts and some of the original plants. My bales last me 2 years then I break them down for compost. I get the best strawberries in the neighborhood and have got many folks to start stawbale gardening in our little town and a few on the outskirts.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 3, 2011
3:01 PM

Post #8834647

Gourdbeader; You are one lucky person, to be in a zone where you can do that. Here the straw berry plants would freeze dry the roots unless they are in the ground then it is advisable to mulch them in the winter. I tried them in containers and lost them. So haven't tried them in straw bales, though the bales should insulate better than dirt, I would think.
My garden is all done for this year so I spent this afternoon picking up about a bzillion walnuts from the front yard. I'd cut the tree down but I would miss the shade and it would take too long for another shade tree to get that big. Maybe go another year or two then just go without any tree in that area.
Gourdbeader
Toledo, OR
(Zone 8a)

October 3, 2011
4:22 PM

Post #8834741

I picked enough strawberries yesterday to make strawberry shortcake for two of us. They were as big as small limes. I usually get berries up until November. Everbearing strawberries. Yum.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

October 3, 2011
4:26 PM

Post #8834749

Russ , don't you dare cut that tree .
Gourd , you know how to hurt a gal
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 3, 2011
5:00 PM

Post #8834820

Now I know who to call when there is a fresh covering nuts all around the tree and laying nut to nut. lol

Yeah now I have to go to the freezer and get a bag of strawberries out, so I can make a SSC also. not the same as fresh but mine were June bearers and I had to pick them before taking off in July. Course they also go great with the rhubarb I froze too.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

October 3, 2011
5:02 PM

Post #8834822

Y'all just keep on .
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 3, 2011
5:08 PM

Post #8834830

Hey Digger, I'm gonna prune my grape vine this winter, Want any cuttings to root? I'm gonna try rooting a couple dozen and start some out in the garden.
Gourdbeader
Toledo, OR
(Zone 8a)

October 3, 2011
8:42 PM

Post #8835135

I planted some rhubarb so I hope that I will have some next year. They were good starts and have a few leafs. How long does it take before you can expect a good harvest of rhubarb. They are perennials aren't they? Aren't they like Asparagus
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

October 3, 2011
9:39 PM

Post #8835191

I think the main thing with rhubarb is not to plant it too deep. If you do it will either die or not produce for several years.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 4, 2011
6:01 AM

Post #8835419

Yes Rhubarb is perennial. Not sure about the 2nd year for any amount of harvest. There should be enough for a good taste though, depending on how much you planted. 3rd or 4th year should be plentiful. We have a row that I started from 1 old clump that wasn't doing very well. Now we can't use it all, so we give a lot away.
It needs a cold winter to do well as it needs a period of rest. Hope yours does well.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

October 4, 2011
6:41 AM

Post #8835482

Thanks , Russ , But no , I don't need grapes . Too much upkeep and I can't keep up with my stuff now . I live in the middle of a wine grape growing area , and that pruning is work . Don't have that much sun either .
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 4, 2011
8:50 AM

Post #8835609

Sally; I plan to give most of the cuttings to one of my nephews as his dream is to have a vineyard for his retirement. Many years down the road yet as he is still in his 30s. However I will be putting in at least one row. I may have to start drying them for raisins. And yes I could also make some red wine ERRRR for health benefit, ya know. LOL
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

October 4, 2011
10:43 AM

Post #8835761

Speaking of dried: LOl

Sally, you got me dehydrating last year and I did apples. Well, the other day I called into the kitchen and asked Bob what he was doing and he said he was hydrating the apples to make a pie. I was shocked. I had forgotten all about them.

Anyway, it turned out real good.
Gourdbeader
Toledo, OR
(Zone 8a)

October 4, 2011
12:11 PM

Post #8835880

I took and sliced several apples into thin slices then sprinkeled them heavily with spices and let them dry out. Then I strung them and the are hanging in my kitchen.
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

October 4, 2011
12:14 PM

Post #8835887

Do they have much aroma in the kitchen? For how long I wonder.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

October 4, 2011
2:35 PM

Post #8836066

I've put cinnamon and brown sugar on them , good !
Russ , of course . Also , now is a good time for him to plant . The older the vines get , the better the harvest , I've heard . I know they live forever and just get bigger stems .
Gourdbeader
Toledo, OR
(Zone 8a)

October 4, 2011
3:31 PM

Post #8836129

Not too much aroma but they look pretty with an Autumn flavor so to speak. I tied cinnamon stick slivers inbetween the slices.
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

October 4, 2011
3:32 PM

Post #8836130

LOL, those stems are trunks and branches eventually.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 4, 2011
7:24 PM

Post #8836401

Yeah, I have a trunk on the south side of the attached garage. I'm going to put some poles up and string wires up and over for that one to double as a shade and if it still continues to produce as well as it has been that will be another plus. Just think it would be better to have them out in the garden.
Took a break and went fishing, come home with 8 large bluegill. Had to throw a bunch back, in order to get all large ones. But that's a couple meals
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

October 5, 2011
2:51 PM

Post #8837374

Oh that sounds good Russ, are they anything like crappie? We get some big crappie's here about 14". I had never seen any that big until moving here. We had always caught small blue gill, crappies, sun fish, etc. what we called garbage fish before, but never this big. Also Perch. Do you get those? We normally throw them back but other people like them. We used to scale them when we were kids. But, I think my mom planted them with her roses when we weren't looking. Do you skin them? Fillet them? And then bread, or batter? Really sounds good. Talking about the Blue Gill you caught now.

Jeanette
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

October 5, 2011
4:15 PM

Post #8837458

They make good bait for catfish on trotlines .
Russ can tell you how they fix them , but one way is de-head and gut them . then when they are the small 5" or so , saute them in butter with seasoning , On the plate , use your fork to peel skin and scales off and push to the side . Eat the flesh . Small trout , same way .
We got the big crappie (white perch ) in southern Ark . It's legal to use YO_Yo's there . The string unwinds on a spool with a spring in it , bait it with minnows , set the trigger . that's after you tie it to an overhanging limb or a nail on a post out in the water Fish comes along bites , pulls , pops the trigger and the line snaps up and catches 'em . In the spring , when they are bedding up , you can get enough to put a few meals in the freezer . They , and catfish are my favorite freshwater fish .
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

October 5, 2011
4:43 PM

Post #8837488

Digger, we don't peel the small trout. The skin is the best part, just pan fried when they are dipped in flour and use bacon grease. ALWAYS take the head and guts out of all fish. For me anyway.

Have never heard of fishing with yo yos. Pretty cool. It is illegal to use any live bait other than worms in this state. But, I can see how you do it. Followed that line I did.

Think I told you that they are selling "farm raised" seafood like shrimp, salmon, etc. that they have shipped from India, Thailand, etc. here and it is not flavorful at all. It is not good. I will not buy it. If it doesn't say "wild caught" on it forget it. Think they are growing them in fresh water.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

October 5, 2011
5:03 PM

Post #8837501

About the small trout . I just can't get around the tiny scales . I know , I know , can't tell they are there , but I know it. I will use a spoon and scrape under running water, outside . Done tried scaleing in the house , clogged sink , scales in the darndest places for three months . LOL
I'm with you on the imported seafood . Besides , who knows if those people have sanitary work conditions . In other words if they even wash thier hands after potty . At least here you're supposed to . We catch most of our fish and can buy a lot of it right off the boats . (shrimp & oysters ) some of the oysters we gether ourselves .
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 5, 2011
5:53 PM

Post #8837578

Yes the big ones are similar to Crappie. I don't bother filleting them as only the rib bones would give any problem and you can just use your fork and wipe the flesh from the bones. or just break the whole rib cage off and slide the bones out and you can even lick your fingers if you wish. LOL
I like them saute' ed in butter. I scale them first. We have all those others too.
If they are less than 6 or 7 " they go back to grow up. one of our friends caught a 13.6" Bluegill
I'd rather have catfish but they didn't seem to be biting at the time.
I need to check for myself but my brother tells me that it's illegal to use bluegill as bait in IA. They do make great cat bait though. Put them on a jug line at night and you get the big cats. It seems like the DNR is quick to put a stop to any easy way to catch fish. We can still use a trot line with a limit of 15 hooks. It has to have a tag on it though, name and address and so on. Same with bank lines( ditty lines )
When Nephew and I went on our little excursion we had rock bass for breakfast just cooked in water then seasoned after done.

Yeah jen I think anything shipped in from elsewhere, we get the cr- -p, they keep the good.
As far as fresh water shrimp, it might as well be crawdads.
Sorry Kent does it count as subject if we sit on a bale while fishin. lol
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

October 5, 2011
5:59 PM

Post #8837590

All yo-yo's have to have name, Add written on them > I think you can still have 50 per person .
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 5, 2011
6:19 PM

Post #8837615

We are limited to 2 lines. Don't know anything about Yo Yos but could probably use them.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

October 5, 2011
6:26 PM

Post #8837623

Sally;
Took a ride today, checking out a few more river accesses, Took samples from a couple sand bars home. Haven't checked them yet. Let you know later. I really want to try a dredge. lol
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

October 5, 2011
6:29 PM

Post #8837626

You have the talent to make one .
I'm calling it a night , G night .
lonejack
Longview, WA
(Zone 8b)

October 17, 2011
10:49 PM

Post #8853557

Hi Kent,
I haven't been on the site for a while, been busy moving to a new shack.

On 26 May, you wrote:
1. I do think the frames are saving some water because the sides of the bales/soil/compost mix are not exposed to the sun/air. Less evaporation. But, the bales do a great job of retaining moisture even when exposed.
2. Other than last year's blight, I have been pleased with the way the plants have looked in the bales. As you can see by my pics, this year's garden is coming along well, too.
3. Last year I recycled my old wheat straw into the frames and packed it in as far as they would go. I then took new bales and finished filling in the remaining space. This year I added some commercial 50/50 compost/soil mixture, some sphagnum moss, and commercial manure compost to everything, plus added some new beds.
4. I've never used any grass/hay/alfalfa bales. Way too expensive in my area.
Kent

When you add the old straw, I know you remove the strings and pack the loose straw in the frames.
When you add the new straw do you add it loose or do you add a complete new bale on top of the old straw?
If you do add new bales, do you orient them with the strings down or sideways?
Do you add the compost/manure and such on top of the straw?

I am asking these questions so I can get ready for the next year. As I mentioned above, I just moved into a
new shack and want to spend the winter getting ready.
Paul.
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

October 18, 2011
8:45 PM

Post #8854845

Welcome back, Paul.

Q: When you add the old straw, I know you remove the strings and pack the loose straw in the frames?

A: I do remove the plastic strings. That's why I like the old-fashioned twine. It rots and you don't have to worry about it.

Q: When you add the new straw do you add it loose or do you add a complete new bale on top of the old straw?

A: I pitch-forked all the old straw within the frames up to the depth I wanted. Whatever space was left over in my frames, that's where I placed my new bales directly on the ground inside the frames.

Q: If you do add new bales, do you orient them with the strings down or sideways?

A: Strings up (ON the ground) so I can cut them and pull them out easier (for plastic strings only). The water also trickles a lot slower through the bales with the strings ON the ground.

Q: Do you add the compost/manure and such on top of the straw?

A: You betcha!

I bought a sawz-all today on sale to cut back some of my frames. I had them 3 boards high, but I'm going to cut them down to 2 boards high, and use the extra to make some new frames under some trellises where I'm going to grow my cukes next year. I'm tired of reaching over into a double row for cukes.

Kent
lonejack
Longview, WA
(Zone 8b)

November 21, 2011
1:17 PM

Post #8900204

Hi all,
I will start this again, my computer decides to kick me out at the most in-opportune times. I only had about 3 sentences completed.
Longview, where our new home is located, has beautiful tree-lined streets. In all seasons this makes for a very picturesque scene.
One problem; these trees are deciduous, with tons of leaves to be disposed of each year. I have never raked leaves in the past so
this is a new, very strenuous task; unless I go and join hundreds of neighbors and buy one of those infernal, obnoxious, leaf blowers.

This year I decided to spin off of Kent's practice of using old straw in his grow boxes. I raked up all leaves on the sidewalks and
driveway and pack them into some of these plastic tubs you find at Lowe's and Wallmart. It is surprising the amount of leaves you
can pack into one tub. I have 4 tubs and will have to borrow some leaves from the neighbors to finish filling.

I plan on letting these tubs, "cook," over the winter, then next spring I will top them off with new grass clippings and planting soil.
I drilled a series of holes around the base about 2" up from the bottom of the tub to let excess water out.
I hope the leaves don't get too hot as they cook and melt the tub. I thought about working a vent pipe down in the middle to let in/out
hot air.

We complain about the cost of hay/straw bales and let a free resource be hauled off to be composted. Then we pay big bucks to buy
back the compost to use around our flower and shrub beds. I hope you picked up on the fact that I mentioned I only raked the leaves
off the sidewalks and driveway above. Any leaves that fall on the lawn, flower and shrub beds will stay as mulch.

I looked and things were a little slow here so I thought I would chime in. I know that this isn't exactly strawbale gardening but it might be
a way to use a resource we have around us.

Thanksgiving is upon us. I hope everyone has great plans. This will the first Thanksgiving in our new home. We are so Very Grateful for Everything Our Lord has bestowed upon us.

His and Your Very Grateful servant, Paul.

postmandug

postmandug
Bardstown, KY
(Zone 6a)

November 22, 2011
11:34 AM

Post #8901550

Sounds like a winner idea to me Paul. If you could chop them up a little with a mower first they would decompose faster though.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family also.

Doug
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

November 23, 2011
1:56 AM

Post #8902345

I have to admit, I haven't tried to decompose (COOK ) the leaves. but I have been gathering all the leaves I could and spreading them on the garden and till them into the soil.
Doug you are right, they do decompose much faster when chopped up. One year I didn't get them tilled under in the fall. They were still mostly just a leaf cover in the spring, even though there had been several feet of snow cover during the winter. I will give the leaves another home this year, as I have several large tubs, and a leaf shredder. This gives me another plan for a raised garden. Pack the leaves in the large lawn paper bags and force them into a wood frame and poke holes in the top side of the bag and you would have a bale you could work with.
Paul; I will start on this and give it a go round and try to keep a record and take photos. I have mostly maple leaves and some Chinese elm. I should have enough for a couple bales this year.
I can still get some loose straw and dry horse manure for the hauling away. I can try packing that straw into the same kind of frame. It is just a little more work than getting bales and setting them in a row but why let something that is free pass you by. lol
Russ

postmandug

postmandug
Bardstown, KY
(Zone 6a)

November 23, 2011
8:00 AM

Post #8902591

Happy Thanksgiving Russ!
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

November 23, 2011
8:54 AM

Post #8902652

LOL, Russ, that year that you didn't do anything but put them on the garden you just put them in the freezer. With the snow all over them. Just preserving them. :0)

Have a good Thanksgiving everyone!!
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

November 23, 2011
11:25 AM

Post #8902801

Russ , I filled a frame about 8' circle , 2' high last year with mulch from recycle plant . Tree and plant material . I watered good and put 30/0/0 on it as I filled it and now have reduced it to one foot high .It got good and hot . I used a whole bag of fetertilizer and kept it damp until I left the last of March . I'd say , invest in a bag , makes it a lot faster .

Edited to add , I made the frame out of that plastic lattice two foot wide and wired together with a small overlap .

This message was edited Nov 23, 2011 2:27 PM
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

November 23, 2011
12:38 PM

Post #8902962

"Freezer" was right on, for that year Jeanette.
I have made a couple trips to the river, " where I can get to the sand that has washed up in big piles. and loaded up the pickup. I will mix that in with what I get from my compost bin, to amend some of my flower beds. That sand is almost white, with no dirt in it. That sand probably came all the way down from Montana this summer with the flooding. Who knows!!!
Sally, I'm trying to make my raised beds about 2 rows wide so I can reach at least half way across for ease in picking the fruits and veggies. And I will use some FERT to get it going.
Happy Thanksgiving to ALL
Russ
jlmcv45
Owensville, MO

December 1, 2011
10:53 PM

Post #8913355

my time is up. not going to renew. its been good to know you. so long . jlm cv45.
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

December 2, 2011
7:02 AM

Post #8913553

Oh please reconsider . You can at least use some of the open forums . Let us know where you are .Sure enjoyed your posts , even if we don't hear from you often .
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

December 3, 2011
6:28 AM

Post #8914672

Jim; How much have the dues for DG gone up, I may have to re consider too. They will be hitting me up too in a couple months May have to just use Email
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

December 3, 2011
8:14 AM

Post #8914774

Have they gone up ?
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

December 3, 2011
1:29 PM

Post #8915044

I don't know digger! I just know every thing seems to go up except money in my pocket.
You know the rich get richer. Those who aren't get left behind.
lonejack
Longview, WA
(Zone 8b)

December 21, 2011
8:11 PM

Post #8938833

Hi all,
I don't know how much the dues have gone up or are going up.
The way I look at it, 2 or 3 visits to Starbucks and you have your
dues paid. Do you realize that if you were to visit Starbucks once
a day, you spend $350 to $500 a year? We all spend a great deal
of $ on a lot of stuff. The info I get from this and other forums is well
worth the $; not to mention the entertainment value. Where else can
you chat with and see pictures of what people are doing all around
the country and world? What would I do at 3:00 in the morning when
my bladder wakes me up and I can't go back to sleep? I sure wished
I had the capability to do this when I was young and just starting out..
It sure beats staring at the tube for hours on end or sitting at the end
of a bar, sucking suds.
Paul.

This message was edited Dec 21, 2011 8:12 PM
lonejack
Longview, WA
(Zone 8b)

December 21, 2011
8:32 PM

Post #8938888

Hi again,
I was really low when I said $300 to $500 if you stopped at Starbucks once a day for a year.
The lowest priced cup of coffee is $1.50. Some of the drinks you can buy run $5.50 or higher.
So if you just bought a cheap cup of coffee it would cost about $550 a year. And $1.50 is cheap
for a cup of coffee. In a restaurant it will cost you from $2.50 to $3.00 for a cup of coffee.
They sure have learned to cash in on we Americans thirst for coffee.
Paul.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

December 22, 2011
2:06 PM

Post #8939574

Hi Paul;
Just thought I would put in my 1-1/2 cents worth. Being retired and having lost my savings, We don't visit Star Bucks. We have to look for nickles that may have slipped out of somebodies pocket in the recliner. lol
No movies, watch our trips to town so we get everything done in one trip. The car is broke down and will stay that way until I can save up enough to buy the parts and then I will have to do the work myself.
I know most either have a job or at least have a little retirement saved up, but not everybody.
I will try every way I can to stay a member but some people really have to watch where every $ goes.
And I'm not scolding nor feeling sorry for myself. I just have to " make do."
Russ
lonejack
Longview, WA
(Zone 8b)

December 23, 2011
10:31 PM

Post #8941191

Hi all,
Let me try to cheer everyone up a little. Here it is the Day before the eve of Our Savior's birth,
let us say some things we are thankful for this past Year.
I will start:
I am Thankful for the family Our Lord has given me. I am thankful that my son-in-law and
daughter wanted us to move in with them. I am thankful for the three rambunctious grand-kids
that came with the bargain. They sure keep my bride and I jumping.
I am thankful for the great Home we found for our family.
Paul.
randbponder
Hornick, IA
(Zone 4b)

December 24, 2011
7:23 AM

Post #8941413

This old veteran is in a debt of gratitude, for the gift this Christmas of a year of DG membership.
It really warms my heart and tells me the friends on DG are the greatest.
Many thanks to the one who opened their heart and gave this gift.
A very Blessed and Merry Christmas to all.
Russ & Barb
Jnette
Northeast, WA
(Zone 5a)

December 24, 2011
10:35 AM

Post #8941579

Russ, wish I had thought of it. :0) Have a wonderful Christmas everyone. Jeanette
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

January 1, 2012
5:04 AM

Post #8949685

Discussions have moved to here: http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/fp.php?pid=8949684

Kent

You cannot post until you register, login and subscribe.


Other Strawbale Gardening Threads you might be interested in:

SubjectThread StarterRepliesLast Post
Straw bale gardening: no weeding, no hoeing, no tilling KentNC 274 Oct 18, 2009 1:58 AM
Strawbale Gardening (part 7) Jnette 126 Mar 20, 2007 9:51 AM
Straw Bale Gardening LauraK 49 Apr 2, 2008 12:02 AM
Straw Bale Gardening (Part 8) KentNC 114 Apr 2, 2007 5:32 PM
Straw Bale Gardening (Part 9) KentNC 124 Apr 21, 2007 12:39 AM


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