Oh darn Jay, I had written a big long reply of my plans of what I want to do with my property but I guess it didn't take. I'll take more pictures and be able to explain it better to you. Today I pulled more vines, pulled some weeds and tucked them under the leaf mulch, trimmed up the bottom leaves of my tomato plants, thinned out my mustard greens and volunteer cantaloupe, I planted green onions yesterday and trimmed them up because some of the leaves were withered, watered my new hosta my neighbor gave me, checked on the moisture level of the soil of my pepper plants and it still doesn't seem dryer to me so I'm holding off on watering them. My problem pepper has a new flower so I guess it's doing better! One of the cayenne peppers is finally red. I have one tomato that should be ready to pick in a day or two. My naked lady lillies are blooming and I have new blooms on my rescue phlox is pushing out new blooms as the old ones wither. After only 2 weeks after transplanting. What a champ! I planting these everywhere next year.
Such fantastic information! I've been gathering wild mushrooms and left over super market mushrooms and putting them in my main garden I have dubbed "The Swamp" I am using leaf litter as mulch and chopping and pulling weeds and tucking under the leaves. I enriched the clay soil with composted manure, peet moss and leaf mold. I'm anxiously staring willing mushrooms to pop up even though I know the real action is happening under the leaves. So far my tomato plants are doing great but my peppers aren't. I think I may have loved them a little too much. I've backed off on watering and pulled the mulch backup so they can dry out a little. I've planted mustard seeds, lentils, green onions, and some flowers and mint to attract the pollinators. Oh and I have some volunteer cantaloupe sprouts that I've thinned out and tucked under the leaves too. The important thing is that I'm enjoying myself and Permaculture is just so much more fun than regular gardening! I love your blogs and thanks so much for all the great information you share!
We have a bag of grass seed we're planning on planting as soon as it cools off. Yes I think I've got a pretty good idea of what I want to grow....ALL THE VEGGIES!! We're doing raised beds on the sunny side of the yard and the middle front yard I want a mix of flowers and purple veggies, rainbow swiss chard, and red lettuce, snuck in here and there, the leaf pile side is next to undeveloped land so I want to have my yard birds over there. Geese, ducks, chickens, pigeon, quail ect. I also want some rabbits and bees. Then in the back it's sloping some gentle some steep and in the very back there's a creek that's pretty dry unless it's flooding, then it's trees and...I'll give ya one guess...VINES!!! So after we get rid of all the vines and harvest some trees back there I want to, have pastures for my birds, have an area to try to grow my birds some food, hydroelectric waterfall that empties in to a pond, terrace it, build decks, have an above ground pool. I want to plant fruit trees and berry bushes, paw paws, persimmons, cigar trees and other trees that would be good for wood working and use for smoking meats. I mixed the charcoal like stuff left over from our bon fires into the swamp garden but I don't know if it was enough. I'll take a picture of the back yard and better pictures of the leaf pile side where I want my birds. I have about an acre to work with not sure if that includes the house. So I should sprinkle something on the lawn until it's cool enough to plant the grass? I have some chia seeds, bird seed, mung beans, and field peas and lentils. Problem is it's really hard to get the water hose over there. I'll find a way though. Thanks again for all your advice you're just lovely!
Hey Jay! Thanks for the great advice and solving the mystery of the tiger lillies! I have considered the cardboard smothering technique but was afraid the vines would just continue to grow underneath! I hadn't thought of wearing outvthe roots though that's brilliant and I'm trying it tomorrow! I also have really heavy old blow up mattresses that I've repurposed into vine barriers around my leaf pile I'm going to use for this purpose too. We pulled a lot of vines out of the yard today. Our yard is going to be so bare and sad until we get the seed down. Any advice about that? The ground is very lumpy because it's been a mole super high way and roots from the gun tree. We got some of those mole repellant super sonic stake things so we shouldn't have anymore hills. Should I get some top soil to even things out? Awww no not your fig tree! Dang it! Maybe it'll be good for it to be pruned because it'll focus on developing roots and then put out more leaves. I have one and it's not fruiting. I'm going to get him a friend I heard that can help. Yes I have some somewhat rotten logs I'm burying in my raised beds next year and in my flower beds too. So excited about this idea. Here are some progress pics of my swamp garden and some other pretties.
Thanks Eric I remember reading that in Red Hawks thread now. I'm just going to relax about it. I think they're looking better now only one still looks sickly. A bell pepper. The jalapeno only has a tinge of yellow on a few leaves. Yesterday we pulled a crap load of vines out of the lawn, the lentil sprouts I put in the pot are all peeking their heads out of the dirt and I had a daisy open up and it's so pretty! So glad I didn't aggressively weed that bed! Oh and I found a lot of wild mushrooms and put them in my swamp garden next to the tomatoes. Got some mushrooms from the store too and I'm going to make a slurry and pour them on.
Thanks Eric will be getting comfrey asap, wood chips I'm waiting for my chip drop while scouting for other sources. I watered with some lawn clipping tea, will get the blood meal asap and I saw an oyster mushroom kit today at the store I'm getting asap and will order wine caps. I'm trying hard to incorporate as much Permaculture as possible I have learned so much from you and this wonderful forum thanks so much for sharing all your wisdom! Hey do you think that pine needles could cause the leaves of my pepper plants to yellow? I have a lot of them in there from the loads of leaf mold. Maybe some baking soda mixed in their water will help balance the ph a little? Trying everything I can to get these puppies to grow I don't want my bf to be right!
Thanks Eric! So happy to see your comment! I know the plant sticks are a cheat but man these peppers are so sad and my bf thinks I won't be able to get anything to grow in my swamp garden and so the ol' competitive spirit came out in me and I caved and used it. I want to use urine but my bf freaks out about it and says he'll refuse to eat anything out of the garden. I am discontinuing the sticks next year though. I read where I can make a tea out of yard clippings and use that for nitrogen but my property is covered in English Ivy! Do you have any remedies for getting rid of it? I'm waiting anxiously for some wood chips from chipdrop.com. Hopefully soon. Again thanks for taking a look at my crazy ramblings you're just the best!!!
I planted some green lentils that I sprouted and had some left over because I was tired of squatting so I planted them in a pot. They're such cute plants why not have them growing in pots here and there right? I do this with wood sorrel because I think they're cute so why not lentils right? I watered everyone and noticed the dead leaves sort of form a crust that makes it hard for the water to penetrate. So now I'm worried about that. I may have to pull them back away from the plants a bit. Waaaah!!! Uuuugh!!! My phlox is perky this morning, mustard greens looking cute. Like tiny clovers! My chick peas are looking ok, put some plant sticks by my yellowing peppers and now I'm staring at them every couple hours willing them to green up. My rain saving leaf soaking totes have stupid freaking mosquito larvae in them so I'm going to have to throw a few mosquito bits in. They have bt in them and are supposed to be ok for other wild life. Buried some rolled up wet card board in my worm composting tote because things are looking way too wet and compacted. Saw a lot of worms so ya hoo for that. On the side of the yard where my leaf pile is there is a wire fence and I'm wanting to put down cardboard, clay soil left over from my bed digging and leaves. I'm wanting to do a flower and edible bed over there next season. There are these stumps left over from some sort of vine that was growing there that I cleared. Going to try dousing it in vinegar, then putting a black plastic bag and brick on top. Don't want them coming back and growing under my cardboard. So that's my next goal I think. Anyway that's all I got for now!
Big happenings in the swamp garden today! I staked up a lot of my tomato plants and these guys are all now sharing this wire fence thingie that used to be my mom's compost holder I think. Hopefully it stays upright and doesn't fall over. I used zip ties and long twist ties to keep the plants on the cages. I can't remember what variety these tomato plants are but they have some flimsy trunks. I would never have had these problems with my beloved beefsteaks but the seeds I planted indoors for them died of damp off so I had to get these from Wal-Mart. It was so cool we saw a toad in my garden and a huge inky blue black dragon fly who just sat there on a tomato cage and watched us with his little judgy mob boss face. He was adorbs. We saw a humming bird checking out the tiger lillies, I gave my yeller lookin' pepper plants some coffee grounds, added more lawn clippings, found some wild mushrooms and tucked them under the mulch. I would make a slurry but I need to find a blender and dedicate it for the garden. picked up a bunch of rotten wood and threw it in my leaf soaking tote. I'll be spreading that around tomorrow. Such a feeling of accomplishment and me and boy had a nice time and some laughs whilst we toiled away in the heat. Oh and I checked out my chick peas on the leaf pile side of the yard and they're doing ok shockingly. My mustard greens are doing well in the one place I planted them. My volunteer cantaloupe sprouts are doing well, my cucumbers and green bean sprouts are looking ok, my rescued phlox is not as droopy as yesterday, I am sprouting some green lentils to plant. Besides the yellow pepper plants everything is going really well! YAY me!! Oh and as always...I pulled up some vines!!! 😂
Thanks very much Chon! So happy to see a reply I was beginning to feel like I was just talking to myself! Next year we're doing raised beds but I'm wanting to improve this soil to use in them so I don't have to buy a bunch of soil. I would rather just grow in the ground but ya know my bf likes the look of raised beds! 😝😑 Someone said that if it's granite or lava rock sand that's good for the clay but I'm not sure so I think I'm just going to get a soil test and see what they say. Someone else said gypsum was good to make the clay more crumbly. Anyhow I am just enjoying myself and I'm just happy to finally have a bit of land to experiment and try all the neat things I've seen in this forum.
Hey Eric I just wanted to let you know what an absolute inspiration you are to me!! I was glued to your long running thread and would be honored if you would take a look at mine because of you I decided to do it so others could learn from me like I learned from you! Can't wait to get my chip drop so I can grow wine caps too! https://permies.com/forums/similars/similarTo/163945/Breaking-clay-hard
Hiya Jen I'm just dying to know how it's working out for you as I'm waiting for my first delivery of chips and want to grow wine caps but I'm worried that pine will mess them up. Please update us! Thanks and I hope you're doing well!
I found this gorgeous baby on the side of the road and it was all lonely and yardless and stuff so I had the boy dig it up take it home with us. My wanker neighbor sprays over there so I didn't want it to get hurt. Phlox is lovely, smells amazing, and the butterflies love it. So happy to have it. YAY! I'm trying to propagate it in water hope it works. If I can get it to propagate easily then I can sell it in my plant business. How cool will that be eh? I have some lentil that sprouted so yay for that and my mustard seed sprouts are doing well in one spot with less sun than the ones that have more sun. My peppers still look crappy. I'm getting some more plant spikes today and see if that helps. Oh I subscribed to chipdrop.com and I am pretty excited about it. Wooo hooo bring me alll the chips! I'm afraid it will have poison ivy or oak in it though. I hope not. 😱😝😑 Well I guess that's about it for the day...oh wait I forgot...we cleared more vines today. No day is complete with out some vine pulling! *sigh*
Pulled some more vines today. I don't think my lentils took. Maybe I should wait until it's cooler. The mustard sprouts are looking good. I think one of my bell pepper plants is in trouble. There are some yellowing leaves and one of the peppers seems to be about to fall off. Going to try giving it some worm tea when it dries up a little. I may move my peppers that are drooping to the shadier side of the garden and move the tomatoes I have there to the sunnier side. Scooped dirt mounds made from moles and filled in the holes. Oh and yesterday I put some Portobello mushrooms under my mulch to hopefully increase the fungal content. Added some tea bags, coffee grounds, and sprinkled eggshells on top to deter slugs. Getting lots of tiny plant growth all over the garden so I may need to put more leaves down. Maybe some cardboard too. Gave my tote worm composter some cantaloupe. They really liked that. Oh and I have a snake hole by the main garden site. Maybe the one I saw the other day. Hopefully he'll eat anything that tries to eat my garden. I wonder if he likes caterpillars and Japanese beetles!? We saw frogs and an annole last night. It was so fun watching them while sitting on the front porch and listening to music. Ahhh I LOVE the semi almost country life! There are neighbors but they're far enough away that I can pretend they're not there. 😊
My tiger lillies are blooming and I saw a hummingbird checking them out today. We saw a snake it was cool looking. My bf wanted to kill it but I told him no don't. It seemed so calm and cool looking slithering around the lawn mower. I planted my mustard seeds that sprouted. Oh and I found some old seeds of my moms. Mostly flowers so I'll plant them next year. I was excited about the forget me not seeds they're one of my faves. There was some lettuce which I'll plant when it cools off in September. Got some seeds in the mail that I ordered too. It was a seedful day!
I haven't done much in the garden because my shoulder is hurting but I got my chick peas planted in the leaf pile side of the yard. My lentils aren't showing yet above the dirt yet. Some of my pepper plants have wilted leaves. Maybe too much rain for them?
This is exactly what I am doing and I'm having such fun! I planted lentils in my main garden with my tomatoes and peppers and have chick peas and mustard seeds going through the sprouting process. I planted cucumber and green bean seeds and they came up quick! I'm using composted manure, peet and leaf mold for a soil conditioner then leaves on top for mulch with a layer of greens and grass clippings in between. Things are going great! I dug 2 compost holes, and a leaf pile with cardboard under it then a worm farm underneath and I have a worm composting tote. I feel like I was born to do this it's so fun and so much better than conventional gardening!
Hi! I hope you're still around so I can get an update on your success! I have pretty much done exactly what you're saying with the grass clippings and leaves on top of heavy clay soil. I added composted manure, peet moss, and leaf mold and mixed it in. It's only been 2 weeks but it's going great. My peppers and tomatoes are looking happy. 😊
my soil was heavy clay and I added composted manure and peet moss but it just made it into slippery almost silky heavy clay. So I had some areas of my drive way (not used by cars) that was covered in vine mats that had leaf mold in them. So I cut the mats and shook out the leaf mold and we had about 30 wheel barrow loads. I mixed it in and it really did help with the texture! My plants have taken off!!! The soil isn't the best and it's not as mixed as I'd like because some patches are better than others but things are growing! I've been watering with worm casting tea and I gave them a little plant food. I have whole leaves on top for mulch.
I have cucumber and green bean sprouts!!! YAY!!! 14 cuc and 20 green beans. My lentil sprouts got uncovered by the storm last night so I covered them back up. The tomatoes and peppers looked great though. Bright green and the peppers look perkier and less transplant shocked. I have about 10 banana peppers that'll be ready to pick tomorrow or the next day. Still waiting for my chick peas to sprout I can't wait. They're cool looking plants and I can chop and drop them under my leaf mulch and compost them in my garden compost hole. We tried some cucumber salad at the store and it was heinous so I'm going to compost that! Haha I got compost fever baby! Yeah! If my family stands still too long I'll compost them! 😂 My bfs friend came over today and commented on my garden and said pine needles are bad for plants. So now I'm trying to find information about it. My understanding is that they're ok and don't change the acidity of the soil that bad. Hoping someone will chime in about it.
I bought some dried chick peas at the store and have them soaking now so I can sprout then plant them. My lentils were a go they didn't rot so I plant them in the main garden. I got some green onions so I'm going to plant the tops asap after it stops raining. AAAAAND I got a thyme plant at the store. I swear thyme is just the most adorable plant ever and it smells nice. I think I'm going to try making an oxmel with it. It's like a honey vinegar concoction that's supposed to be good for when you're sick. It's supposed to be made with sage but why not use other herbs? We cleared more vines today over by my leaf pile. I'm making a garden bed over there with some extra iris, tiger lillies and ferns I have. Oh and when I was digging in the garden to plant my lentils and bury my compost the dirt was very nice. Two different places!! Excited about that. I think this clay soil is going to be easier to fix than I thought. Which is good because I am going to have a lot of extra after all our projects and I'm wanting to use it for my raised beds next year. I'm so super excited about everything. I've been waiting 4 years and studying for this. So so excited. I feel like I was born for this! Like I am finally here at the right time in the right place with with the right knowledge.
Today we cleared more vines, and I'm sprouting some of the lentils I bought. I think I soaked them too long though so I may have to start over. I didn't water today because it was supposed to rain. Hopefully it'll rain tonight. I sprinkled some epson salt around the bases of all the plants. I saw a few green sprouts not sure if it's the celosia seeds I planted or weeds but I figure weeds are an encouraging sign as long as it's not freakin stinkin english or poison ivy. Researched how to grow onions from store bought and it's going to be harder than I thought. Of course! I think I'm just going to slice the dried up roots off and stick em in the ground.
right weeds are the best sometimes. I imported some from my old yard to my new property because I needed my little buddies! Here at my new place all there was freakin stinkin english ivy. It choked out all the other friendlier wild plants.
It sure seems to be a common problem so I'm glad I'm not alone! Yes I am lucky there's lots of neglected spots thick with vine mats filled with leaf mold and worms! 😍 Someone keeps throwing away my compost items and it's so frustrating! They'll get used to saving it for me though.
I'm excited I got some lentils, garlic and onions from the store to plant!!! Lentils are good nitrogen fixers from what I understand and they're such a cute plant and the sprouts are delish so I am ready to get these going!
I'm having trouble with some sort of murderous looking ground hornets. Will have to pour gas on their hole when I find it. I need to harvest my extra kombucha scobies and bury them in the garden site and in my worm farms. I have 2. One under cardboard under the leaf mold making pile, one in a tote. Another thing I need do is make a better work farm. The tote s falling apart. Going to extend my leaf pile and make it longer so I can prep the site for future flower beds and smother freakin stinkin ivy at the same time.