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Photos of Joseph Lofthouse's Garden  RSS feed

 
gardener
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Laurie: Thanks for the grow and taste report. Yesterday I harvested 4 Big Hill tomatoes, and immediately planted the seeds. They are part of my beautifully promiscuous tomato breeding project and may contain inter-species hybrids. So I was hyped that I was able to get seeds soon enough that I might get one more generation grown this summer.
 
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My Big Hill are setting fruit!
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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My carrots are flowering...

So are the poppies. These were grown without weeding.

The wild tomatoes could fit very well into a flower garden.

I've been going to the mountains to collect wildflower seeds.

How much do you enjoy the taste of daylily flowers? I adore them!

I do row-cropping. It greatly simplifies planting, weeding, and harvest.  I like rows to stretch from one side of the field to the other, and to be spaced just wider than my cultivation equipment. For the squash and tomatoes, that's about 8 feet.

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Carrot flowers
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Poppy flowers
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Promiscuously pollinating tomatoes
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From a hill overlooking the squash field
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Daylily flowers are edible
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Loving the huge heads on this ancient wheat
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If you come visit my farm, be sure to bring a jacket, even during the day in the summer!
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Row cropping tomatoes and cucurbits.
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Nanking cherries
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Expect to be wildcrafting seeds from these in a couple weeks
 
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Joseph are you collecting all sorts of wildflowers or just certain ones ? I might be able to collect some from our property in Wyoming if you like?
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Miles Flansburg wrote:Joseph are you collecting all sorts of wildflowers or just certain ones ? I might be able to collect some from our property in Wyoming if you like?



I'm collecting wildflower seed from the local ecosystem. Some I may sell to a regional seed company. Some may get listed in my seed catalog this winter. I am attempting domestication of some species: That is moving them to my garden, and selecting for traits that are more suitable for human food production (taste, productivity, etc)

I would be interesting in wildcrafted serviceberry seeds from other areas. And wildcrafted Potawatomie plum seeds.

Here is a photo of the first two seedlings to germinate in my Potawatomie Plum breeding project.
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potawatamie plum seedlings
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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William Whitson and I made a podcast last week. William is an owner of Cultivariable seed company.
https://www.cultivariable.com/podcast-6-joseph-lofthouse/
 
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Facinating stuff
 
pollinator
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How much do you enjoy the taste of daylily flowers? I adore them! 


Day lilies don't bloom over a long enough time for me. Evening  primrose and holly hocks give me fresh blossoms  every day all summer long.
 
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Just yesterday I had my first daylilly blossom and was totally shocked at how good they taste. I had planted them for purely ornamental reasons and now I want a lot more so I can eat them and still have some to look at. Do they have differing flavours? Mine taste crunchy, slightly sweet and with a hint of chives, that gets stronger in the stalk.
 
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I would be interesting in wildcrafted serviceberry seeds from other areas. And wildcrafted Potawatomie plum seeds.



What is the best way to process/store serviceberry seeds? I think I'm on the end of the season here but a friend told me of a bush growing wild with very large berries. He collected seeds from it in the past and I was thinking about getting some myself. Could send you some assuming there are still berries left to pick!
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Thanks Daron:

Daron Williams wrote:What is the best way to process/store serviceberry seeds?



They are a seed in a wet fruit, so I use a few different methods:

1- Eat the fruit, spitting out the seeds.

2- Mash the fruit with a little bit of water and let the seeds ferment for 3 to 7 days. The seeds sink, the pulp floats, wash the pulp away.

3- Pick seeds out as best as possible.

4- Let the fruits/seeds sit around and dehydrate naturally. 
 
Daron Williams
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Sounds good - I will try to check the bush out sometime this week. It is growing wild at a city transit park and ride.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Here's a few photos from this week:

The squash really loves this hot weather. It's growing fast right now! I skipped planting part of a row that is near some trees, because stuff doesn't grow well that close to the trees. The squash bees have hatched, and are having a glorious time in the squash flowers.

And while I'm on the topic. My next door neighbor is constantly spraying his yard to kill plants. I believe that his poisons are negatively affecting my field. Notice how the row closest to his place had poor seedling establishment, and the plants closest to him are puny compared to further away. It's the same seed lot, planted on the same day. Farmed the same way.

I only have one type of daylily readily available, so haven't been able to taste if there are differences between flavor of different varieties.

I'm growing red cabbage for a local chef. She'll turn it into lacto-fermented slaw. This is one of the few pure varieties that I am growing. Doesn't have a variety name, since it came from a nursery.

I've been putting on a bee suit to mow the apiary this summer, so it's not the huge weed patch that it's sometimes been in the past.






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Squash field is liking the heat.
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Decreased plant establishment and vigor next to the neighbor's fence.
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Daylily.
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Red cabbage, and beans.
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The apiary.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Four months ago, I posted this photo of cold-stratification of garlic seeds. Just by putting them in a pot outside, and let the weather take care of it for me.



Here's what they looked like yesterday. I gratefully acknowledge the pioneering work of Avram and Ted of Garlicana.

 
Daron Williams
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I got some of the serviceberry berries. Thinking about doing the fermenting method. Would I then let the seeds dry after that is done?

The serviceberry is growing on the northwest side of a parking lot right on the edge of the lot and a small hardwood forest.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Daron Williams wrote:I got some of the serviceberry berries. Thinking about doing the fermenting method. Would I then let the seeds dry after that is done?



Thanks. I think so.
 
Hans Quistorff
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I saved a bag of Oregon [Washingto] holly Would you like some of them?
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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I've made a few pairs of inter-species hybrid squash the past few years. They are growing well. Some of them show tremendous hybrid vigor!

A maxima/moschata hybrid. I call this population Maximoss.


I'm speculating that this is a maxima/moschata/pepo hybrid. If the hybridization is confirmed, I'll be looking for a name...


An argyrosperma/moschata hybrid. I call this population Mospermia. Fruit shape from moschata. Fruit color from argyrosperma. Peduncle mid-way between the parent species.


The same plant as in previous photo, showing the fig-leaved trait which came from moschata.


The squash field a few days ago:


I call that my squash field, because other than cover-crops I only grow squash in that field, due to severe problems with animal predation when growing other crops. However, I grow more squash in my other fields.


I'm preserving food. Most recently Dilly beans and pickled cucumbers.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Hans: Oregon grape isn't currently on my list of anticipated breeding projects. I don't like the taste of oxalic acid in my foods. But if you find something that is particularly low-acid, sweet, prolific, or large-fruited, I might be tempted to reconsider.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Joseph Lofthouse wrote:Some of them (squash hybrids) show tremendous hybrid vigor!



For example, some of the flower stems were more than two feet long. That puts the flower above my knees. And the leaves were waist high!!!
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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I checked on the mushrooms that I planted earlier this spring. There is lots of mycelia growing on the chips and logs. I can't tell right now whether it is from the species I planted, but hope springs eternal... I planted oyster mushrooms, and a few species of morels.

An apricot tree lost a branch last week, so I chopped it up and made more mushroom  logs.


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Mushroom spawn growing on wood chips.
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Wood chips and small diameter logs feeding mushroom spawn.
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Mushroom spawn devouring a small log
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Mushroom spawn colonizing a bigger log.
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Logs to be inoculated in the near future.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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I love, love, love to irrigate.

The wildflowers in the foreground are part of my beautifully promiscuous tomato project.
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Irrigating
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Beautifully promiscuous tomatoes
 
Hans Quistorff
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What is your observation on sprinkler irrigation of squash. does it increase infection of the leaves or diminish it because the leaves don't cycle between limp and erect due to heat and water stress?
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Hans Quistorff wrote:What is your observation on sprinkler irrigation of squash. does it increase infection of the leaves or diminish it because the leaves don't cycle between limp and erect due to heat and water stress?



I don't notice infection on my squash, whether I irrigate by sprinkling or in furrows. It is hyper-arid here. For better health of the plants, I prefer sprinkle irrigation, cause if I water in furrows, it's like growing  in pots, because the distribution of water is limited. I sprinkle irrigate once a week, long enough to put down one inch of water.

Sprinkle irrigation promotes the growth of mixed-species cover crop (weeds), which really helps with soil fertility.  Watering in furrows makes it easier to maintain a show garden.

I only grow locally-adapted landraces that have lived here for many generations. I do not use crop protection chemicals or fertilizers. Therefore the tendency towards being infected with microbes or insects is greatly minimized.

And, there could be a good dose of "I don't pay attention" going on. I just plant, weed, irrigate, and harvest. If one particular plant has a problem, I just yank it up and forget about it. If one crop fails, it's just one in a hundred. The other day, I thought fondly of all the posts to permies about, "what is wrong with my plant". I saw some squash leaves that had been eaten by something, presumably a caterpillar. It's a half-dozen leaves among a thousand squash plants, so whatever. The novel critter is welcome to share the garden with me.
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What's wrong with my squash?
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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It's hatching day. About 36 hours earlier than expected...
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Newly hatched chick with mamma.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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The plums are starting to turn colors. They'll be ripening soon! Like most of the trees that I'm stewarding, they are a heritage variety. The name was lost before anyone now living can remember.

I sure love growing giant sunflowers! And promiscuous tomatoes.
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Heritage plums
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Giant sunflowers
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Promisous tomato flowers.
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I sure love feeding my community
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Joseph Lofthouse
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It's been 12 days. Mamma and babies are doing great.

I love plant breeding: These are interspecies hybrids between common beans and runner beans. They are finally setting fruits.

We keep a radio running in the corn patch to deter coons  and skunks from eating the corn. A makeshift roof keeps the rain and irrigation out of the radio. Coons don't like the noise. For what it's worth, neither do I.



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Hen and chicks.
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Interspecies bean crosses.
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Radio in the corn patch
 
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Took me a while to figure out why you had an amputated chicken foot just to the right of your hen and chicks. 
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Mike Jay wrote:Took me a while to figure out why you had an amputated chicken foot just to the right of your hen and chicks. 



Ha! That's the problem with photos... So easy to inadvertently expose the skeletons. Here it is, fully exposed.
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Optical illusion: Aputated chicken foot.
 
Miles Flansburg
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Wow the color of those plums is amazing ! I've never seen anything like that.

Do you ever have branch breakage? Do you support the limbs? Are they grafted or grown from seeds?
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Miles:

The plums turn dark purple by the time they are ripe.

I'm very non-interventionist. I don't support limbs. Sometimes they break. I figure it's pruning that I don't have to do next spring. These trees were planted before anyone now living can remember. Not grafted. Replacement mechanism is to allow one of the shoots from the lawn to grow up to become a new tree.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Lately, I have been making a point of drinking wild water.

I added an apple orchard to my farm yesterday.

This morning, made a batch of chili sauce.

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Drinking wild water
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Apples
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Removing seeds and skins from cherry tomatoes
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Boiling down the sauce in two heavy bottomed pans, cause it goes faster.
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Chili sauce
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Bottled chili sauce
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Yesterday we harvested rabbits. We were almost done cleaning up before we remembered to take a photo, but here's the last 3 (of 7) hanging to dry before packaging. Hanging weight is around 2.5 pounds. 

There's a lot to take to the farmer's market this time of year: honey, beeswax, apples, nectarines, plums, grapes, grape plants, summer squash, basil, winter squash, tomatoes, potatoes, and a dahlia table decoration.
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Rabbit meat, hanging to dry before packaging.
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Farmer's market
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Farmer's market
 
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Joseph, are you putting your wild water through a filter before drinking it? I know two people who claim they contracted severe Giardiosis from drinking unfiltered water in the Bear River Range.
I myself have not had a problem drinking wild water in your region, but I use a filter or drink spring water right at the source.
One hidden spring that I visit a couple of times a year issues forth from the base of an immense boulder high up in a small side canyon, it is a constant 11 c and I like to drink from it with my face totally immersed. Very refreshing after the steep hike to get to it.
I love the limestone water from your region and take a couple gallons home with me every time I visit. The lava rock water in my area is good but not as good as yours.



 
Joseph Lofthouse
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The wild water I drink most frequently is a spring, issuing forth from the base of a small limestone boulder... I kneel to drink directly from it, and often take a glass jug of it with me for drinking during the day. When I drink from open streams, I fill a jug with water, and let it sit in the sun until the next day. I don't use water filters.

 
Joseph Lofthouse
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More bottling. This time, enchilada sauce.

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Enchilada sauce
 
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We were visiting family in Cache Valley on Saturday. Our Niece came by with a big bundle of basil and a bit gnarly looking but extremely tasty tomatoes. She had been to the Gardeners Market. She went on and on about the generous and friendly vendor that she had purchased her produce from and how she would definitely return to his stand. She described him as smaller than her, bare foot, with some glitter on his face.
I gave her your name and said she could look you up on permies.com.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Thanks for the report Steve.

People often try to give me pseudo-tomatoes, thinking that I'll take them to market and get rich. Sure, they look pretty, but I might as well try eating a bland piece of cardboard. I much prefer the taste of my heritage tomatoes, even if they are a pain to try to get to market. 

I love wearing glitter. Too bad it doesn't show up well in photographs.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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I harvested tepary beans today. About half of them are segregating hybrids.

Also built quilt-boxes to go on Langstroth honey bee hives for the winter. An idea that I'm adopting from Warré. They will get filled with wood shavings when they get onto the hives. A canvas cloth is being applied between the quilt and the brood box. The theory behind the quilt box, is that it will wick moisture away from the colony, and prevent it from dripping back down onto the bees and chilling them. Also, it might raise the temperature of the hive about 5 degrees F. Which might give the bees just the advantage they need to be able to move to fresh honey stores during super cold spells. (Excess moisture, and bees starved to death with plenty of stores have been common failure modes in my hives in past winters.) If even one colony survives the winter, it will pay for the materials used for constructing quilt boxes for 20 colonies.

I harvested the sweet potatoes grown from pollinated seeds.

I've started harvesting the butternut squash.

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Tepary beans.
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Honey bee quilt boxes.
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Sweet potatoes grown from pollinated seeds.
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Long-necked butternuts.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
gardener
Posts: 3465
Location: Cache Valley, zone 4b, Irrigated, 9" rain in badlands.
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The fall harvest report doesn't seem complete without a big squash picture...

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Butternut squash (medium)
 
That is a really big piece of pie for such a tiny ad:
What would you cook first in a rocket oven?
https://permies.com/t/89866/cook-rocket-oven
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