Scott Foster

pollinator
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since Aug 02, 2017
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Recent posts by Scott Foster

Great advice.  I'm still pretty new to food forestry here are some things I've learned.

Start nitrogen fixers or something to create biomass. I went from 5 pieces of comfrey I bought on Etsy to probably 100 comfrey plants in two years.   Comfrey is great for creating edge and keeping your islands free of grass and weeds.   I find that you can't have enough comfrey. (Some don't like comfrey so you may want to see if you like it first.)  All of my fruit trees have comfrey planted close by.    At first, focus your planting in a small area and use it as a springboard for learning and propagation.

  Find a trio or group of plants and just start.  I have black locust, raspberries, hazelnuts, sunchokes, mint and a few other perennials that I use to start new islands.  I replanted fifteen volunteer seedlings this year that came up from what I have planted. 

     These are all pumping out so much biomass that I can easily propagate to another area without spending a dime.   Mulch, in place, as much as possible. If something struggles to grow don't be afraid to chop it down and plant something in its place. 

      I have a couple of varieties of heirloom apples that are just too tender but I've kept them alive going on five years.  A new variety of apple that is very disease resistant and hardy is overtaking these heirlooms in growth.   The new variety has only been in the ground a year.

I find that small areas that are heavily planted with biodiversity do much better than sparse plantings.   You are creating a mini nursery by planting heavily.

I have an Island that is probably 50ft x 50ft and it just pumps out life.   In this one area I have black locust, apple, black currant, mint, calendula, willow, seaberry, alpine strawberries, nasturtium, mint, daylilies, comfrey, Radish, Alliums, you get the point.   The black locust in this area put on almost 6' this year.  The locusts in less biodiverse areas put on 1/2 that growth.

I see this as a way to do less work, smarter because this growth keeps the grass back and the weeds down.  It's kind of like having a nursery on autopilot.   Planting less dense islands with less biodiversity has meant doing work over as grass and weeds get a foothold and the plant in place are less vigorous.
4 days ago

Burra Maluca wrote:This is the mountain above the village in the Rhondda valley where I'm staying at the moment.






So sorry to hear about your friends passing.    I hope things work out.   Portugal is a diamond in the rough.  
6 days ago
A hike two weeks ago.  New York, Hudson Valley area.  There were signs posted to watch for Timber Rattlers.  It is so late in the season I didn't even think about it.  I was on mile eight, worn out and pumping up a hill.  I almost stepped on one sunning in the middle of the trail.  We scared each other.  I think I might have screamed like a little girl.







https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/bxIWVpwKjNYWxyXXK8eKggLhBhqNE5TjIWguK6xG_yCCgzlZdrmsgLt9s8sDQ87cTVtZmleqbo3rck_8CF_Lr_jMTzhbC25o74nFMLHV49DAx8cD1-gw_KVNpMlcFYoguh3xqlZ7Cg=w2400

https://photos.app.goo.gl/1kKxUrisoJRQ5qot7



1 week ago
USDA order link for Kazakhstan Apple seeds, Sour Cherry and Grapes.   

Please send requests for plant material and/or information to:

Dr. C. Thomas Chao
Horticulturist/Curator for Apple and Tart Cherry
USDA, ARS
Plant Genetic Resources Unit
630 West North Street
Geneva, New York, 14456-0462

To see the catalog and print an order form follow the link

Malus Catalog 2018-2019 Distribution Year
1 week ago
Kitty was probably still nursing.  We have two cats from the same litter and the mother died.  I purchased formula from the vet and they grew like weeds.  I just realized that this may be a cat and not a kitten. 

Here is a link to homemade formulas.

Kitten Rescue
1 week ago

Helen Butt wrote:I don’t know what your climate is like but here (ie in the microclimate of my garden at least) nasturtiums last until about Christmas. Great for salads :-)



That would be great.  I'm guessing they will start a rapid decline at the first frost.
1 week ago
10/07/2018

Two weeks ago  I cleaned up most of my annual beds and left the anemic looking flowers in place.  Today, after a couple of weeks of neglect, I went out to finish the clean-up.

I just ended up pulling weeds and chop and drop.  There was too much activity from bumble bees, honey bees, and little critters to cut flowering plants.  I was very surprised by this.  My Sunchokes, from Twisted Tree Farm, are off the hook as are the black locusts.  I have some clumping bamboo that is healthy, but it just won't grow.  I'm not sure what's up.

.......These pictures were taken today.

I figured these nasturtiums would be spent, not so much.

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/P5btcoxauHWSrObB7snyhTT17MHoMNmlOaygUo_C9qaJakZ8U_IsajI6ynX3yiZEutIwC0XTNUyi1gNeo_6jYVMEx_6DPl4FyRNKdk7077yBWmMggLmHPigvkLPgrSP_QzhKSPyZvQ=w2400

Honey Bees with loaded legs.



Honey Bee



Bumbles




Volunteers, I must have dropped some seeds, Tomato, calendula and carnation



Clumping Bamboo that just doesn't want to grow, year four and they are only 1 ft tall.







1 week ago
I am by my very nature anti-social.  What I mean is not so much that I'm socially awkward but more that I'm not interested in small talk or socializing.  If I have a common interest I love to talk about ideas but I'm not interested in gossip or talking about other people.  There seems to be a tremendous amount of that.  I Just

don't care to participate.    I get my energy from within and I find that crowds and small talk drain me.  As I get older I find it very difficult to grin and bear the whole, "keeping up with the Jones, mentality."

    Live and let live doesn't really work. You are expected to act a certain way and if you don't there is blow-back.  Very few people examine their own existence let alone read a book. 

If you live in suburban America you can walk out in your yard, talk to a neighbor and you are having the exact same conversation wherever you are.   It just bores me to tears. 

Then there is the issue of give an inch take a mile.  Start out friendly and you have people opening your back gate, walking into your yard and knocking on the sliding glass window as you stand there in your underwear. 

Because I keep to myself I tend to attract gossips and facts finders.  Ugh.   Life circumstances make it impossible for me to move to 20 acres with a farm-house but that is definitely where I belong.

Socializing for business where I come and go at my discretion is one thing, but my home is my castle.  I guess I need a mote.

As long as you aren't hurting anyone do your own thing.

"What other people think of me is none of my business."  Wayne Dyer

"Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people." Eleanor Roosevelt

1 week ago