Ideally you want a bud that doesn't already have a full grown leaf (follow your fingertips in the photo to a small branch with an emerging leaf bud (found just to the right and north of the line from those fingertips).
I usually do bud grafting in the spring when newly formed buds are showing up, but you can use any bud that looks like them.
I try to slice just into the heart wood when taking a bud and I like to have about 1/4" on either side of the bud I'm taking just because it makes it easier.
With that much "extra material" I can then trim to fit my T cut and I like to use rubber banding to hold it all together.
Plant that bird seed, it contains millet (the small roundish white/tan seeds), sorghum (the red flattened sphere seeds) and oil sunflower seeds, (if there are any smooth very light colored seeds in it that would be canola seed) all are non-gmo products so no worries about that.
I also see hard and soft wheat in there, also good and most likely non-gmo as well even though there are wheat seeds that are gmo, most still are not, the ones that tend to be gmo are the durhams used for pasta flour.
We have an area that we are planning to spread around four large bags of "bird seed" next spring just to have thick cover on that part of our south slope.
Indian type corns are usually dent varieties and they are not gmo since they are not a commercial grain crop.
If you worry about gmo, think vast fields of monocrop, those are the products the commercial folks are concerned with, edamame (soy beans), durham wheat, flint and dent corns, cotton, these are the most likely gmo's.
Unless you are going to raise orchids I don't think you would gain enough benefit from the "fancy" material to bother with it.
poly film this is what I like for my greenhouse.
I use it for the exterior layer then I just use visquene for the inside for winter time. (my house frame is 2x4s so I have 3.5" space between the layers.
From what you describe, you want to take that to an Elite dealer, they might be able to get you repaired for free. If you do it yourself, any warranty you might have will be null and void.
Stihl products are about the best designed on the planet and they do stand behind their products better than most.
I have several Stihl products including an F90 Pro trimmer and I even have the blade for cutting sapling trees with.
I've got lots of mini boulders and I've never hit the head on one, I've dinged the tree blade on them but never the head.
I did some searching and I can't tell you what that person was referring to as climbing lily of the valley. There are no climbers that are referred to as climbing lily of the valley. Perhaps she got it from one of those companies that sell plants with "cutesie" names instead of botanical or even common names being used.
Microscopes are very useful, especially if you have animals. For soil use they can help you determine which microorganisms you have and how many of each are present, for compost they allow you to know which organisms you are growing and again how many of them.
While these uses are mostly for those who want to rapidly improve their soil, it never hurts to know what and how many of these organisms you have.
You can also actually see the soil food web in action, learning how bacteria can and do move along the fungal network highway can be helpful as well as interesting to see.
You can also check your plants for microscopic pathogens and pests, check animals for parasites or other pests and you can even check blood samples for signs of infection, and other issues.
With a polarization filter you can check your soil for which minerals are present and which are missing or low in quantity.
If you think like a scientist you will probably never run out of things you want to check out with your microscope.
It is true that you can get by without one, it's been done for thousands of years and I don't say they are necessary for all gardeners, because they aren't, they are a tool that can help you a great deal should you want to make sure you aren't doing any harm to your good soil microbiome.
Buying and using a microscope is a choice that has to be put into perspective, if you aren't developing soil in a large area (acres) then your uses might be limited and it would not be the best thing to spend money on, unless you want to get to superior soil in one or two growing seasons.
I've always used a brace n bit, I have a full set of bits for it, 1/8 inch up to 2 1/2 inches, it has worked for all my timber frame projects without fail.
The boring machines I've seen others use have to be set up and they can be wobbly in use.
Most glue joints will come apart much easier if you heat them first. I use a regular heat gun but even a hair drier can be used to heat glue joints to soften the glue before you start taking them apart.
Gentle prying is the best way to break loose glue joints. (I think you may have already found out that hitting with a hammer isn't so good)
Lets take a look at how cover crops are generally used. We plant a cover crop to prevent soil from erosion, to keep the soil cool, to have live roots breaking the solid structure of the soil into more fractured, portions so water can infiltrate more easily and the soil will then also hold more water longer.
These are the main reasons for using cover crops. Once the cover crop has done its job, these plants are usually cut and the matter is left to decompose (rot) in place, that means all the nutrients those plants gathered for growth are now being returned to the soil.
When cover crops are used this way, there is no real nutrient loss and there can be a nutrient gain since one of the places plants gather nitrogen and other nutrients from is the air they breathe as well as through the roots, so it is possible to see a net gain in things like N.
I like to add as much woody material as manure to my compost heaps for manure, I use wood chips, straw, soiled hay, raked up grass clippings, forest floor litter that needed to be removed to establish pasture area.
With a 50/50 mix of manure to other organic, fibrous materials we can allow not only bacteria and fungi a foot hold in our compost but it also helps all the other beneficial organisms good soil needs to thrive and populate the compost.
The more micro organisms we can grow in our compost heaps, the better that soil will be once the compost is added to it, either subsoil level or surface level. (dug in or used as mulch)
Mycorrhizae are so important to good soil and good plant growth that I would never think of leaving them out of a planting, adding the spores to a compost in process is almost a no-brainer, why would you not give your new plants the one set of organisms that are well known to cause superior growth.
Almost all and any fungi found in soil provides a multitude of benefits to anything (microorganisms, plants, macroorganisms) growing in the soil. Fungi serve many functions (see my thread Nature's Internet and Bacteria-Fungi and Nematodes Oh My! for more on how the soil circle works).
Logs that your going to put plugs in should be cut and set up for about two weeks (probably one week in your part of mother earth) then drill plug and seal with wax (don't forget the ends).
Stack and mist often enough that they don't dry out, keep in as deep a shade as possible.
When you see white mycelium covering the ends of the logs under the wax, you are ready to fruit by soaking for 48 hours then standing the logs up at an angle (don't let them touch the ground, ever).
Be sure you know the natural fruiting times of year for your species, no sense trying to fruit if they aren't going to do so in nature, doing that requires rooms where you can control light, temp and humidity all year round.
Oh yes I cut out the bottom and trim the height to a few inches above the soil line. Usually I've gotten two to three rings from one barrel.
I planted some bamboo in one of these, that one I didn't take out the bottom and I cut it so 8 inches was above soil level since it was one of the creeping rhizome types, the owner of the property loved it since the bamboo didn't go invasive.
The book I gave a link to Ultimate guide is an easy to use one which makes learning to use a microscope quite easy and faster than most people think they can learn.
For micrographs of the organisms we want (and the ones we don't want) you can go to the library and check out a microbiology book, go online to Tim Wilson's great site,
or if you have the funds and desire, purchase a microbiology book that has full descriptions and micrographs (these usually start at around 60 dollars US).
I recommend Tim Wilson's site and then the library, most folks don't want to have a thick book to hunt microbes in, time wise it can take a while to locate what you want.
Most people can learn to use a microscope in less than three hours, after just a couple of days they can be fairly expert at it.
Microscopes are more for those that really want to know how their soil building efforts are improving the soil, they are not absolutely necessary, but they can be very helpful (and they can be rather addictive).
You can still build superior soil without one.
My personal microscope, in the case takes up 16" x 16" x 26" storage space, the case holds the scope and all my "extras".
By the way, if you have any animals that become sick, your microscope can be a great tool for finding out exactly what "bug" they have caught, which means you can effect a cure faster.
There are lots of applications for a microscope on a farm, should you decide to go the science route, but people farmed for thousands of years without science so there is the question of "is it necessary? and is it better?" I would have to give the answer of "It depends on the farmer".
Antonio, If the sheep manure is not fully composted, it would be best to complete the compost cycle prior to use on plants or trees, there are a few pathogens in most sheep manures that can transfer if the compost hasn't been at a high heat (160f) for at least 5 days.
Since you are growing cover crops (great idea), just finish the composting and use it around the trees, be sure to leave a fair amount of space between the manure and the tree trunk (that way you will feed the right roots and encourage root growth at the same time).
With a pH of 8.1, should you want to reduce that to closer to 7.0 you would want to use sulfur powder (can be added to the compost heap where you are finishing the sheep manure or just spread on the soil ).
I would use small amounts (dustings) so you don't over do it, you can add more easily but it is hard to subtract.
To calculate the amount of compost you need to know the volume of where you plan to use it (cu. cm or m or cu. ft.) in this case you can calculate the volume of the subsoiler tine(s) and use that for the amount of compost should you go that route in the future.
With you already having planted, the roots will do most of that work for you this time so I would save the compost for the trees.
Plants don't need nearly as much nitrogen in the soil as most chemists believe, they are going on measurements of ammonia contained in plant matter that they determine by Kjeldahl analysis.
Plants however get nitrogen from several sources when they are grown in good soil that has an active microbiome of adequate numbers, so unless your plants show that they are missing nitrogen, you really don't need to make any additions of it.
Tracy Wandling wrote:I am wondering what kind of remediation might be needed to plant a forest garden where cedars have recently been cut. I know that there are lots of plants and trees that won't grow near cedar.
Would I need to dig out the roots?
Would I need to wait a while before planting? How long?
If I need to wait, what can I do to speed up the process?
The Junipers do more to acidify the soil than they do via allopathy, to speed up the decomposition of the root systems you need to add mycelium (mushroom slurries do wonderful things for such a soil).
Pick the fungi that love the conifers such as chicken of the woods and other edibles, that way when they fruit you can have some very tasty meals from your soil that is only getting better from the hyphae network you installed.
When you plant, these fungi will be in place, ready to help those plants grow and gather nutrition. At this time of year, you probably would add the fungi now and then when the timing is right for a fall garden go ahead and plant it, the fungi won't mind a bit.
Dan, you are right in thinking that most of the allopathy of junipers is caused by sunlight deprivation and moisture deprivation, but there are compounds released by the roots (mostly for non acid loving bush type plants).
Cedar that has been stripped of its bark will last a very long time as fence posts, leave the bark on and they will rot quicker than a pine board left on the surface of the soil.
Faison Zutavern wrote:All this talk about using mushrooms to break down oil makes me want to try piling all my poison ivy in one spot, then innoculating with mushrooms to try breaking down the Urushiol.
That will actually work, it takes about two years for full break down of plant fibers (first to go) and the Urushiol (last to go), use several different species of mushroom caps to make your slurries and use as much slurry as it takes to soak the heap of vegetative materials.
P Lyons wrote:Asphalt shingle disposal - Any mycoremediation potential? I have an isolated cabin with a deteriorated asphalt roof covered in moss and pine needles to dispose of.
The best method for this sort of thing is to put down a set of tarps all around the building, tape them up the sides of the walls too, then carefully slide the loosened shingles onto the tarp.
When finished just wrap them up and take them away.
Using mycoremediation on such products will only take care of part of the problem (that fiberglass will always be around or at least it will last far longer than you will be here (on earth)).
It is sad that such products are in wide spread use, but they are and they are very hard to remediate or flat out impossible to remediate.
You would need an incinerator like they use for chemical warfare substances disposal to take care of that stuff.
When we are ready to check our compost or soil for which microorganisms are there we might want to own a few test tubes.
What we want are the microoganisms, not the minerals (although with polarized or darkfield illumination we can look to see which minerals are present) so we need to be able to offer a liquid (water) environment for those microbes to suspend in.
Test tubes make this a lot easier since we can use small amounts (5 gm) of our growing medium (soil or compost) add around 10 ml or more of water, mix it up and use a pipette to draw off the liquid to apply to a slide.
Placing a cover slip thins out the liquid on the slide, which makes for easier viewing, staining and these make counting a lot easier, a grid plate placed under the slide gives us the ability to count organisms per mm or per cm which is nice for mathematical extrapolation to larger areas.
If we want to observe how the organisms move about, a depression slide is the ticket again we want to add a cover slip to protect our objective lens.
If we want to identify specific bacteria, we will use a gram stain which will instantly identify gram positive and gram negative bacteria.
Most of the bacteria we want in our soil are gram positive and will show up nicely tinted from our stain. This makes them easier to count, it also makes it easier to see their shapes.
At the same time, other organisms, larger than bacteria will be stained (amoeba, ciliates, nematodes, etc.) which also makes their identification easier for us.
If you are looking at your highest magnification and there are many blurry objects it is time to reduce the amount of magnification by switching objective lenses until those objects come into focus enough to be able to see sharp outlines, then we can use our table adjusters to bring these into sharp focus.
The deeper you delve into building your soil, you might want to add some of the goodies from those links of lists I put in the first installment, these will allow you to check for other parts of good soil that don't show up so well with our "normal" illumination.
There are special filters that can help, without having to use stains, to identify many organisms in your soil samples.
This site is an alternate to amscope, they offer quite a lot of options and equipment selection Microscope world
When I am checking organism counts and types in our garden soil or compost I like to have a polarizing filter close to hand or already in place, this limits the light wave frequencies and makes organisms show up sharper.
When you first place a slide on the table and slip it under the slide holders you want to decide if you are going to work from low magnification to high or the other way around, because you will raise or lower the table accordingly.
The coarse adjustment knob (outer knobs on left and right, at the back of the table) is used to get things close to focused, then you use the inner knob(s) to fine tune the focus.
These days, with the camera options you can then look at a bigger screen or take a photo of what you are looking at.
When I started my Masters degree, we still had to hand draw or use a standard camera with film, the new age of digital photos is quite awesome to me since I can show a class the object we are talking about and use a pointer to distinguish the parts of the organism.
My personal microscope doesn't have this feature, yet, but I can see a time coming up soon when I will be retrofitting it with a fairly high resolution rig to connect it to a computer and monitor.
Currently if I need to make micrographs I use one of the Universities microscopes, but mostly I still make drawings because I just prefer to do that.
If you want to really get into using a microscope to improve your soil or compost tea microorganism counts, you might want to look into a small vortex mixer. inexpensive vortex mixer To make slide prep easier you can check this link out for different stains and other items that you might find handy as you get further into microscopy Slide prep kits
Osage Orange is the Best Bow wood ever. I have bows of Osage Orange and Lemon Wood and The Osage bow is much faster at the same weight pull as the Lemon wood bow.
It also make excellent flutes, nice tonal qualities and looks.
I've been toying with the idea of making a clarinet out of Osage one day, I think it would complement my ebony one I bought in 1960.
If you have access to composted sheep manure, Woo Hoo, that is great stuff to use for the purpose you mention, just fill the subsoiler groves to the top.
Being low on N is not really something to worry about so much, the soil test is designed for artificial fertilization of greatly tilled dirt, not really telling the soil builder what they need to know.
Most plants will do fine with a 10% level of Nitrogen in the soil, that is ammonium (the actual nitrogen provider that is broken down by bacteria for the plants to use).
Compost teas can be made from any compost you have, if you can use a fungal compost that is even better since then you are most likely adding all the biology the soil needs.
You can use sulfur if you really need to lower the pH, but if you get your soil organisms built up you probably won't really need to use sulfur or not a huge amount of it.
When you have other questions, just post them here in your thread, I'll be checking it.
Thank you Gurkan for a concise set of definitions and the history of the two methods.
When I really got to looking into the philosophy of KNF I realized that it was (like most methods) born of a conglomeration of ancient and current methodologies.
Cho san and I would disagree on a few points though since his method seems to want you to make additions yearly which means far more work than the earth mother would require.
It should also be noted that there are parts of the method that don't perform as well as straight forward permaculture techniques and the U of Hawaii did a large scale study and made some enlightening comparisons; KNF to permaculture to Commercial standard methods.
The commercial standard was always at the bottom (as I expected it to be) but the others seem to swap places depending on what is grown and which preparation was being used.
For me KNF is worth adding to the mix but I would not use any singular method and depend on it to do everything I desire for my soil and plants.
For a commercial set up those numbers should work well. The coolest set up I've seen they use hooks and hang their fruiting bags from the roof, going vertical allows them (in an 8 foot height) to have five bags roof to floor per line and they used a 2' walk space between rows, the lines were spaced 2 feet apart in each row.
For off grid you might need to think multiple misters or set up a low pressure rig (similar to a drip irrigation rig but with mister heads instead of drippers) something like that would only need one pump to move the water at around 40 psi to get good misting through out the fruiting chamber.
When making swales and mounds (berms) you need to get that berm growing something immediately so you don't experience erosion of the berm.
That means leaving them "rough" should be out of the question since rough means easier to erode and you can seed then smooth so there is good soil contact with the seeds for better germination.
You do not plant trees on the top of any berm, trees go on the opposite side of the berm from the swale.
The best plant for berms is some type of grass, (grains are grasses).
Over flow usually refers to the water that will sheet over the berm once the swale is full.
You want the overflow water to sheet because that reduces erosion everywhere.
Mark Shepard's book "Restoration Agriculture" goes over these details, how to set them up correctly and where to place collection ponds.
The ideal method is to go out in the fall (before the first frost) and play squirrel, what I mean by that is that you will take your peach pits and go plant them in the soil (plant as deep as the pit is tall) then mark that spot somehow so you will know where you planted.
Dig the hole then lay the pit on its side and cover with the soil. (I use surveyor flags to mark tree seeds)
From that point, just walk away, you will come back the next spring to see how many germinated.
Peaches grown in tree nurseries are placed in buckets of moist sand and set in a walk in fridge for 60 days to stratify them, this fridge is not a constant temp but it is moved from 30 f to 45f every so often so nature is mimicked.
It is far easier to just let nature do this step for you and just as reliable.
The freeze, thaw, freeze, thaw cycle allows the germ to split open the pit in the spring so it can grow into a peach tree.
The ideal time to plant a peach pit is after the peach has been eaten.
If you happen to get some peaches that are too ripe to eat, just dig a shallow pit and place the whole peach in the pit and pull the soil back around the rotting peach.
Nature will do the rest for you.
That elementary school tree seed was most likely an avocado pit and it was suspended by tooth pick in a glass of water, no additives needed.
The conifer forest is set up for acidic loving plants, so most of the berries are going to do quite well in that environment along with some of the nut trees (check that nice list that Ben Z posted)
This is also prime chicken of the woods territory and a few other really good mushrooms can be grown there.
If you want to grow vegetables for the most part you would need to either do raised beds or line an area that you dug out and filled the lining with more suitable pH soil.
The best I've come up with is simple is better.
I have some programmer friends and when we talked about coming up with a program for our homestead farm they said it would be too involved, that is was simpler for my needs to just use excel and just link the columns and rows so at the end I had a page of totals, sub totals and it all related.
I ended up adding formulas so that each page does auto tallying and the last column gives totals for that page.
For my needs this was far less expensive and it is easier for me to use than getting a custom program built.
We use the bulbils for seasoning some dishes.
On clove planted garlic we pull and use the scapes for some dishes, we also have Egyptian Walking Onions and we do the same with them.
I plan to start two new beds of EWO (the Egyptian walking onion) by using the scapes when they are diving to the soil (this is the right time to create a new bed of this onion because it mimics their natural way of spreading).
I usually gather the seed garlic and grow it out to full size garlic, this does take two years to accomplish but it allows me to have two garlic crops going at the same time and the bulbil grown garlic tends to be larger at harvest with the same flavor (I grow two one German and one Italian).
hau Angelika, as Greg and Sergio answered, yes it is possible but planting a forest for the purpose of creating rain takes some considerations of the terrain and atmospheric conditions of the area.
First there is which size trees and what species of trees does it take for this event to occur.
The trees need to be very tall, in the hundreds of feet tall to be exact, a short 70 foot oak forest isn't going to be able to get the conditions set up for creating rain.
The places where studies have show this to happen (trees creating rain events) are semi tropical or costal semi tropical (keep in mind that in the US this includes Oregon, Washington state and the west coastal area of Canada (BC).
The trees can be conifers or deciduous, Giant Redwoods, Fir, Spruce, are the main ones in North America.
In South America the tall trees of the rain forest are the ones that have been found to be able to create rain in areas that are more temperate.
The same goes for other parts of the globe.
The way this works is the roots suck up deep water and transpire it to the atmosphere, at the same time the trees emit exudates that bind these micro droplets of water together, the more exudate that gets emitted the more bound together droplets there are until the atmosphere can't hold it in suspension any longer.
Some think there is a bacteria that works part of this magic but if the bacteria can't get airborne, it seems to me that the bacteria can only excrete some enzyme that then gets airborne and is part of the binding together mechanism, further study is needed to be able to know for certain.
Size of land area of such a forest, so far, seems to be in the hundred + hectare range, but again more study is needed to know for certain just what the minimum might be.
I've had better luck with these squash varieties when I boost the soil with a quarter cup of Sea-90 or a quarter cup of granite mineral dust, most likely any similar product would work.
This year was a very strange one in my area, we had a long wet spring then it suddenly shot up to near 100 f with 75% humidity.
The result was most of our plants did great then just shut down, even the tomatoes have produced miserably for us this year. We are going to plant a fall garden to see if we can get the produce for canning that we need for the winter.
hau S. Haas, no you should not need pearlite or coco coir for a good soil.
Pearlite is used in place of small stones to open up the structure of a soil, coir only adds organic matter and that potting mix has plenty of that so no need for it.
The only thing that might be a good extra addition for a true container soil would be vermiculite (expanded mica) which will soak up extra water and release it back to the soil slowly.
However, if you build good soil, this one addition is also not needed since the organic matter will decompose to humus which will hold plenty of water.
If you live in an arid (desert) region then the vermiculite might be a good addition to a good container soil.
Fungi have to fully occupy a growing medium before they will fruit and the conditions have to be right for them to fruit as well.
So depending on how large your layered pile is, it might be a year before the spawn is ready to fruit.