cesca beamish

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since Nov 18, 2014
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bee forest garden trees
Leicester, UK 8b,
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Recent posts by cesca beamish

It definitely has to be fresh manure. Don't think it matters whose! Have a look at the compost systems folks use for compost toilet processing.
or this pallet arrangement

It works brilliantly for heat, it was the gases I was concerned about

Hello to Amanda from 'sunny' Leicester
1 month ago
Hi.  Every year I use a hot bed to keep my seedlings warm.  I have a cubic meter wooden box that I fill with fresh horse muck and straw. It's great fun and I love watching the temperature changes as well as keeping alook out at my seedlings for the new season. The muck mix is topped with a plastic sheet to keep the moisture in and i sit my seeds trays on top, on slats if i feel it too warm. This year I have got horse poo in woodchip bedding material , filled it up , watered it and wallop it went up to 60C in a day. It's -7 at night here at the mo. However! .... It smells very strongly and I'm concerned this ? Ammonia will be detrimental to any plant growth? Is the mix too high in nitrogen,  but it needs to be high to get hot? Shall I mix in some more wood shavings? I'm going to add a layer on top of the pile to see if it filters it out any way. Remixing the whole contents is do able if necessary but meanwhile any thoughts on reducing the ammonia release would be great thanks.
I searched the topics but couldn't find any references at all to hot boxes. Do you call these something else?
1 month ago
I have some similar looking seedlings. They germinated from seeds picked out of of a block of tamarind. I had seen they were viable when one started to germinate with the boiling in my supper!
I have kept them fairly dry and they are in the polytunnel under a layer of hort fleece. We had -7C the other night and they seem ok still. Lightly scorched at tips perhaps. The leaves seem to fold up & close in when they are cooler.
4 months ago
Yes I like that method and I'm hoping to learn from other folks doing before as well as my specific climate/soil/tree choice. I have shallow, gravelly, artificially made-up 'soil' that I have been mulching fanatically and planting trees.

Found another book that is a very interesting read about the 'communication' of trees :

The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben

4 months ago
Lovely thank you. Book ordered. Going for the 'bit easier read' first!
5 months ago
I recently watched the Suzanne Simard  TED talk How Trees Talk To Each Other - on the micorrhizal connections between trees. A fascinating subject and I want to find out more but I'm not managing to find any leads. Any pointers would be gratefully received. search terms of mother/nurse/hub tree are just too open.
I have questions like why was she not surprised that the cedar was not involved in the carbon sharing. Why conifer and deciduous ? I thought i'd read that coniferous prefer a very high fungally dominant soil and deciduous a much more even bacteria : fungus biomass ratio. How can I make educated choices of nurse trees?
The whole soil food web is wonderful and I'd like to apply this understanding to my forest garden growing.

5 months ago
How resilient have you found your Toona to be? i have read that it resists insect damage? What about slugs and snails?
I have a seedling from this spring's sowing that is now 3' tall and I'm itching to plant it out.( I do have one other seedling that is half that size if it dies!) I feel if I plant it now it should have time to get its roots in before winter. I'm in the UK , usda 8 and we're having a wet, cool summer. But I could keep it in the polytunnel until after spring frosts if its wiser!

8 months ago
hi I have a large enough polytunnel to have spare patches after all the 'annuals' toms/peppers/aubo etc so would really appreciate some ideas on plants that would like the environment:
The east end backs onto a tall hedgerow so is shady for a few hours in the morning.
temps; just below freezing a few times each winter (usually) to 30C/85F plus in the summer
dry(hand watering only) and free draining, pH 7
A lemon verbena is very happy and a grape vine at the sunnier end fruits fantastically.
I am hoping to start a peach at the sunny end too.

Its the drier shady end that needs some ideas if you have any thanks
11 months ago
I'd guess an iron deficiency possibly due to not sufficiently acidic potting medium. I'd try a for a foliar feed.
I'm looking forward to other's opinions though...
11 months ago