carlson yeung

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Recent posts by carlson yeung

According to the Berkeley method, hot compost can be as fast as 21 days. A starting period and then turn every 2nd day. Other hot compost methods are less labor intense and only turn after the temperature drops to some level or begins to drop, but they take longer.

What is it about the Berkeley method that produces compost so fast? It is counterintuitive - for me at least. I thought that a bin that is steaming along at 140F or 150F would be happiest and most productive if just left alone. Not do anything until the temperature begins dropping.. when something is out of balance.

Thank you for your insights.

Bryant RedHawk wrote:

Try to always start seeds in a non-nutrient medium (sand or sand mixed with vermiculite), this will keep the stem to the correct length and there won't be any losses from the stem bending and breaking.

Redhawk



I am one of those people that thought seeds should be started in nutrient rich environment. Thank you for correcting my misunderstanding.

New Questions:

1. How long can a plant, for example, lettuce stay in a low nutrient environment before it must be transplanted into the garden?

2. It may not be ideal, but is it ok to use plain garden soil in a container to start seeds?

Thank you.
If I understand correctly, stuff like vermiculite and perlite don't really decompose.

If every year, I starts seeds in a flat that contains this stuff and then transplant into my garden, doesn't it accumulate? Like, after 10 or 20 years, I would expect that my garden will be elevated with lots of this stuff to get rid off?

Why shouldn't I just start seedlings in flats of compost for transplanting a month later?
How does a soiless mix become soil?

Let's say we have a clay type of soil.
We put a 12" tall raised bed on it.
We till some compost into the clay soil to create a more gradual transition.
We fill the raised bed with equal parts: compost, sand, coco/moss.

If soil is made up of aggregates, how does the clay at the bottom reach the mix at the top to form an aggregate?
Like... how does the top 3" or 6" of the raised bed ever contain or become a nice loamy soil?
It would be really nice if I had red wigglers running all over my garden. I'm told it can't be done because they're composting worms. Then I thought... wait a minute! They were around long before humans began officially composting in bins.

One person advises that red wigglers won't survive winter here. But, another tells me that their eggs will overwinter and I'll have a new batch of baby worms come spring. So, nature has taken care of that part. Then I'm told that they eat food scraps and not decayed material in the soil, so they will starve to death if not in a compost bin. But another one tells me that's ok too, because they also eat decaying wood particles, compost and manure in my soil, and the decaying woodchip mulch in my pathways.

The soil sucks, because I just bought it and put it into my freshly built raised beds last month. It appears to be a mix of sand, manure, and wood fines. The wood mulch in the pathways is actually playground wood chips (softwood with no bark) because I couldn't get arborist wood chips. In another month, my plants will be big enough that I can start chopping and dropping leaves to mulch the raised beds.

Does a permie have a definitive answer to the question: Should I buy Red Wigglers to populate my raised bed garden?

thank you


Is it a good idea to throw a 1/4" of worm castings on top of my soil?

The soil is pretty pathetic. It's crusting and cracking. I'm thinking that a layer of worm castings would help until my mulch is ready to be chopped and dropped.


The book that changed my health: How Not To Die by Dr. Michael Greger

Nobody has to go all the way. I aim for 100% but I'm truthfully closer to 90% of calories from a whole food plant based diet. I can't help it. I like pizza and burgers, so I wander out of bounds sometimes. Dr. Greger's nutrition advice has cured me of asthma and non alcoholic liver disease. There is a section in the book that discusses dementia and brain health. If I remember correctly, all fruits are good, berries are better and blueberries (anthocyanins) appear best for brain health.

My mom used to hate kale before trying some steamed. Try steaming kale for 3 minutes, dump onto a plate and add some salt and pepper. I find it sweet, fluffy, and a little crisp like lettuce when steamed.
1 year ago
I have an area that I'd like to plant Kale (Pentland Brig) and Bush Beans (Dragon Tongue). I'd like to know if it's possible to sow them in a checker board pattern of 1 foot squares. 1 kale per square and 9 beans per square. Both are about 2 feet tall when mature. The kale will be sown in April and the beans in May - a 1 month head start. I'm concerned about whether the shade from the kale will prevent the beans from growing.
If I don't pull the old plants out (roots and all), can the new plant grow?

Square Foot Gardening style: In April, I put 4 Chard in a square. In mid/late July, I'd like to start a Kale for fall/winter harvest. I'd like to plant the Kale in the middle of the square and eat the 4 Chard later - when the Kale is out of the ground and can use some sun. Can this be done... will the dead Chard roots interfere with the new Kale roots?

Thank you.

Which is better in the pathways between 1 foot tall raised beds: bee turf or wood chips?

A local seed company is selling bee turf that contains this seed mix:

Baby Blue-Eyes
Creeping Daisy
Creeping Thyme
Dwarf California Poppy
English Daisy
Five-Spot
Johnny Jump-Up
Roman Chamomile
Sheep Fescue
Strawberry Clover
Sweet Alyssum
White Clover
Yellow Daisy

I'm wondering if it might be at least as good or an even better idea to plant bee turf. I can always mulch the beds and the bee turf with fall leaves every year and chop/drop unedible parts of my veggies into the raised beds.

Is this mix likely to invade 1' tall raised beds of annual vegetables?
What do I do after this mix blooms? Am I suppose to leave it alone? Does it rebloom and provide more bee food this season if I chop it down, etc?

Thank you in advance for your assistance.
1 year ago