Michelle Bisson

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since Nov 16, 2015
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Quebec, Canada
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Recent posts by Michelle Bisson

from my own experience, I have not been successful trying to grow lettuce shoots or plants indoors as it take too long to sprout & grow and the stems are week.

My best success is radish shoots & Buckwheat shoots for winter salad.  Sunflower shoots are great but annoying to pick off all the shells as they do not all fall off on their own.

So this winter, I am focusing on radish & buckwheat shoots and a bit of sunflower shoots.  I have read  Peter Burke's book and have adapted it to growing in larger 10'' pots in an outbuilding that is already heated.  Also, to keep seed costs down, I buy them in 5lb bags, so that is why I limit the variety.

Not only do I use the shoots in salads, I use them like cooked spinach by adding them to soups, stews, gravies, stirfries etc...

Keep us posted! Thanks for sharing!
N Thomas,

Do keep us posted from time to time if you decide to keep them indoors.
I am doing an experiment with bringing in everberry strawberries into an outbuilding that is heated.

There are some small flies, but since the plants are located not in my house, I will tolerate them in the outbuilding.    I have a south easterly window but do not have grow lights. (not ideal).  

I will see if they keep producing strawberries all winter and if it is worth the effort.  Late winter I will put the plants outside to go dormant till the spring wakes them up.

We have several chainsaws, one small one for branch cutting. I think we can cut it really close to ground level and plant a few feet from the old stump. Hopefully that doesn't impact the new tree.

We do have an excavator so we could dig up the stump, I just really don't want to. I'd prefer to leave it.

Sounds like a good plan!  I would not worry about the new tree.  The new roots will find their way around the old stump.  Digging up the old stump looks like a lot of work without the benefits of the old root system slowly decaying in the ground that will provide nutrients and hold in moisture over the long term.

If you look in a natural forest you it is very common that the new sapling are growing on or beside old decaying trunks & stumps.  It will take a while for you stump to decay, but there is no rush.  The new tree will benefit in the future when that happens.
4 years ago
We mostly buried our containers with perennial shrubs in the ground with the plan to pile up the snow.  

It is better that perennial plant soil is moist as the freezing of the soil helps to insulate the roots compared to dry soil when frozen provide not much insulation.  I also piled some dead branches around my perennial shrubs to trap the snow.  The thicker the snow over the plants and the longer we can keep snow in the late winter the better especially if you have plants that might be less tolerant of the cold winters.

Some people will take out their dormant plants from the container and heed them (bury) into the ground for the winter and put them back in their pots in the springtime when they are still dormant.

Another possible solution is the put straw bales around your container and make sure that the snow is piled around the pot and above.  (But the ground is always the best) Some will put their pots in an unheated garage that keeps just below freezing all winter.

4 years ago
I planted some lovage seeds in August (that's when I received them) in a small pot which I transplanted in the ground about a month ago.  Now they were small plants which the frost has now died back shortly after planting.

I am in a northern climate easily go to -45C where I am currently staying.  I do wonder if my baby lovage plants will survive as they were still quite small. It is now wait and see.

My plan is to start some new lovage plants this winter indoors and plant them in the ground in the spring time. If my baby plants that are now in the ground survive the winter, then that would be a bonus.

I would plant saplings beside the tree stump.  In the nature we see that all the time where new trees grow right beside the tree stump.   The tree stump will provide nutrients as it decays over the years.

If you already have some young saplings or trees already growing close by the stump, they may very well take the space by branching out without even needing to replant.  Depends what you have around it.

But it does make sense to ''manage'' windbreaks over time so that there is a natural succession and you might be able to use periodically cut out trees for firewood and other uses.

One challenge -  if the sapling is very shaded by other trees in the windbreak, they might not grow much or very fast.  Depends on the saplings  So consider if you should plant sun loving, (southside) or shade loving saplings (shaded section) to replace the dead trees.

4 years ago
I grow a lot of annual edible plants in containers and since I am using soil that I purchased in order to increase the nutrient content and soil life, I usually place plant matter at the bottom of my pails then fill it up with soil.  This is an ongoing thing I do to always improve the quality of soil in containers.

The plant material does break down usually after a few months unless they are larger particles which I just wait.

During the winter months, I do soil shoots  in those 10 inch black containers, (mostly radish & buckwheat) and after cutting down my shoots, I place the rest of the plant material at the bottom of the next container I will use and fill with soil.  This breaks down very quickly.

Another thing I do is when composting in 5 gallon pails over the winter in a heated outbuilding, whatever is not completely composted, but lets say it is about 75% composted at the end of winter, I will add that to the bottom 2  inches of my containers mixed with some soil, then add soil to fill the container and then I plant in it.

I started doing this because I would have more pots for planting in.  If I did not do this, I would only have 12 pots to plant in, but doing this, with the same amount of soil & non composted or mostly composted organic matter at the bottom of each pot, I could now do about 17 pots.

This seems to be working just fine.

4 years ago
If I want comedy, I can go to YouTube or the TV or other media. And some "comedy" is questionable if it is appropriate.  I am glad the moderators actually do moderate and remove posts or ask for an edit.

Thank you all volunteer moderators! Without you this forum would not be such a great place to ask questions and find answers related to permaculture.