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John Clempermies

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since Jan 16, 2015
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Recent posts by John Clempermies

Bryant, I don't quite understand "remove that heartwood, leaving all the cambium".  Is that from the budwood, the bud, or from the rootstock slit.  Do you have any drawings or photos that would help my understand this better?

John
10 months ago
Here are some photos of cages I use.  The one around the 5 gal container (with pepper plant) is made from aviary wire, 1/2" holes that a squirrel can't reach into very far.  The larger raised bed cages are made with stucco wire, which is a higher quality chicken wire made in the USA and cheaper than the chinese chicken wire you would find at Home Depot (which is also where you buy the stucco wire).  The taller cage is for growing corn and popcorn, it's over 6 ft tall.
10 months ago
Unless the squirrels in your area have bad teeth, I'm afraid they'll go through the plastic netting like it's tissue paper.  I have a lot of plants in containers and I've tried plastic netting, plastic hardware cloth, chicken wire, and eventually aviary wire.  Aviary wire is chicken wire with 1/2" openings.  Squirrels can reach through regular chicken wire (1" openings/mesh) and pull the plant right up to their mouth, but can't reach in too far with the 1/2" hole size.  I make cylinders that fit around the containers (1 gal, 5 gal, and 15 gal) and crimp them at the top with clothespins.  You have to be able to reach in from the top, and also to easily remove the cylinder when you want to spray something like Safer's Soap on the aphids, spider mites, or whatever insect you have to deal with.

My raised bed plots have chicken wire cages built around them, 4'x8'x4-6'high.  There's no other way I could have a garden , the squirrels eat the leaves and then the fruit if the plant makes it that far.  They don't seem to like the tomato leaves, so that always lulls me into thinking the tomato fruit are safe.  But it ain't so.  

Bryant what's the "roof" you put over your nut trees?
10 months ago
Phillip, I like your idea of using the rocks as heat sinks...have you gone out on cold nights to compare the air temperature inside a cluster of rocks with the air outside the cluster.  If it making a difference, then as the tree grows up, you could pile rocks on top of rocks and have a rock greenhouse of sorts.  That would also have the side effect of keeping sun off the delicate avocado bark.  You'd just have to make sure the rock piles were stable, and that your area is earthquake proof.

You're on the right track with the Duke 7, but it's true that Duke 7 has been used as a rootstock for many years (less so now I believe).  The reason is that it has root rot resistance and is also graft compatible with commercial varieties.  They don't seem to be sold as fruit producing trees, at least I have never seen them mentioned in lists of cold hardy trees.  

There are some large Duke trees still growing in the Oroville, California area, and there are still some Duke trees remaining from part of an orchard in the Bangor, California area.  Apparently they still sell the fruit at local markets in the Oct/Nov period.

About 1 1/2 years ago I obtained some "Duke" seeds from two sources in the Sacramento, California area.  One source was from someone who thought he had gotten them from one of the original Duke trees, and the other source was from another local area person who had visited a large old Duke tree next to the old railroad station at Oroville and taken scionwood.  He had someone in his area graft this Duke scionwood onto rootstock grown from local (Waterford, Calif.) area cold hardy seeds.  One of his grafted Duke's grew a huge amount in two years and produced fruit...and he sent me 3 seeds from that fruit.  So I'm trying to grow Duke seedlings, from seeds from these two sources.  My climate isn't as cold as yours, but it's cold enough (24-28F each winter) that Hass and Fuerte are very marginal.  I have a grafted Fuerte, and some Fuerte seedlings, growing in contained outdoors and they've handled 28F(-2C) without any problem, but it doesn't stay that cold for many hours here.   Neither Hass or Fuerte are considered cold hardy varieties (and the list in one of the messages above is incorrect listing Fuerte above Mexicola as it's not even close in cold hardiness to Mexicola).

My Duke seedlings from the 2nd source died on me, probably from not watering them correctly in the hot summer weather here.  I have about 5 of the other source seedlings still in small containers and cups under grow lights indoors.

I hope this information is interesting to you, and although it would be surprising if your Duke 7 had a Duke grafted onto it, even if the graft is killed by cold weather it's worth it to let the rootstock keep growing.  I don't know what quality fruit it would produce, but it has the right genes for cold weather.

I'm attaching a pdf file from a 1963 California Avocado Society yearbook, some pages about the Duke avocado and it's origins.

Also, here's a link to a small northern california nursery that tests, grows and sells cold hardy varieties.  I've been wanting to buy a Bonnie Doon from them but they are a small nursery and often sold out.  http://www.epicenteravocados.com.  It's a good source of information.

John
Topanga, Calif.
1 year ago
If you read about mushrooms and their active ingredients, you'll find that the active ingredients are inside the chitin cell walls.. And chitin is not digested in our stomachs or intestines. So ingesting pure mushroom powder is like ingesting cellulose, it mostly goes right through you. If you want the benefits of the active ingredients (mainly polysaccharides and triterpenes) you need to use an extract from the mushroom. Hot water extraction brings out the polysaccharides, and ethanol extraction is used to produce the triterpenes.

If you look at the Electric Institute mushroom powder tea mentioned above, only the Reishi (ganoderma lucidum) is from hot water extraction. The rest are simply freeze dried mushroom powder and useless for your purposes. Reishi is only a small part of this mix, but perhaps that's what is helping your herpes problem and you might want to concentrate on finding good quality reishi extract powder. The really good stuff has aprox 30% polysaccharides(with a high percentage of beta glucans) and 6% triterpenes.

So if you're looking for results, look for the powders made from dual extraction. Don't pay high prices for anything else.
3 years ago
Jon, do you still have some Bocking 14 left? Is there a minimum order?

I'm also curious to know if comfrey attracts deer, and or rabbits?
In April, do you think you'll be able to verify which comfrey it is...or will it always be a question mark?

John
Ken,

Could you tell me how many roots are in a one pound package, and how much shipping is (per pound) to zip 90290. Also, are these the Bocking 14 cultivar?

John
Topanga, Ca 90290