Sandy Hale

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since Jan 20, 2017
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tiny house food preservation bee
Just off the Delaware Bay in NJ. Zone 7b
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Recent posts by Sandy Hale

Dave Burton wrote:I think the Plants For a Future database may help with finding plants to use on your site.

Thank you.  This is an incredible resource.
1 year ago
I live at the Jersey Shore.  When I established my gardens I had a job that allowed me time to mulch, compost and water whenever needed.  Now I am part of the seasonal economy, which means long hours during times of intense heat and no rain.  My gardens are suffering.  I have a small suburban plot, mostly for native producers (beach plums, figs), herbs and pollinators.  I am looking for suggestions for drought hardy food producers.  My herbs are doing well. Kale and collards can overwinter, but the seeds require tending when I have no time.  I am thinking, maybe some Mediterranean crops. but not sure what.  Winter winds can be brutal.
1 year ago
Girls are getting their periods earlier than ever.  Whenever it happens to yours, please make sure she is well-supplied when away from home.
1 year ago

Dc Brown wrote:Killing two birds with one stone: allow your vegetables to flower. You get seeds and you get beneficial benefits. Parsnip in flower is parasitoid heaven, as are most of the Apiaceae. The name kind of gives it away

Apiaceae are fantastic companions for trees as well. The roots drill into heavy soils allowing drainage and root penetration for other species.

Might be getting a hive here in the next week or so. I've said yes, but people change their mind so hoping the apiarist doesn't.

I use fish for mosquito control, and duckweed/positioning for temperature control. My 'insect water' is an approximately 14 ft stainless steel sink with strategically placed rocks. It uses sunlight to make duckweed which fixes its own nitrogen via bacteria. It gets minerals from litter from the hedge it is beneath. The duckweed is chook food. The bacteria covered litter is compost food. The mossies are fish food. The fish are chook food. The insects drink...


Caterpillars (Black Swallowtail, I believe) eat my dill, carrots and parsley to the ground in late summer.  The beautiful thing is, they never kill the plants.  I get a great crop of herbs and veggies through the early frosts.
1 year ago
YES!  My county library system hosts free workshops on a variety of topics, offers free exercise classes and will buy (so far Permaculture and Wildcrafting) books that I request.  By browsing the new release shelves I am exposed to a variety of topics and authors I would never think to explore on the internet.  Speaking of the internet, it is free to all.  Very important in an economically depressed area.  They exhibit art and provide free meeting space for any community group that requests.  In my opinion, libraries are examples of democracy at it’s finest.
1 year ago

K Sweet wrote:Another way to hold down the edges of any row cover is to get rebar and roll it into the excess cover.  It is very adjustable and heavy enough that the wind does not bother it.  I use several pieces in long beds so it is easier to manage.

One thought I had about the curtains, have you tried to see how permeable they are to water?  I am guessing that it might not pass through as easily as it does through row cover.



Thanks for the idea.  The curtains are sheers, so, so far so good.
2 years ago
Have discovered a new, almost free source of row covers for my gardens.  I bend metal coat hangers into hoops and drape them with sheer curtains from the thrift store.  The sheers are sturdier and don’t pick up all of the debris of traditional row covers. The hangers are lower than purchased hoops, but that has not yet been an issue. So far so good.  Am I missing any drawbacks?
2 years ago
My front garden is scoured by west wind and salt air.  So far, the only plants to survive are Groundsel, Bearberry and Beach Goldenrod.  Sea Buckthorn seems like a good choice that would also produce fruit.  I am having no luck in discovering the difference between that plant and Sea Berry.  I thought someone on this forum might have some information?
2 years ago

Angelika Maier wrote:I am searching for perennial kale seeds, I think the plants are not available in Australia. Does it ever go to seeds? And how does it react to the cabbage butterfly?



I have some Homesteader’s Kaleidoscopic Perennial Kale Grex seeds from The Experimental Farm Network that I’ll be planting soon.
Check out their website.
Good stuff.
2 years ago