songbird's roost

Discussion in 'Members' Systems' started by songbird, Sep 26, 2013.

  1. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

    Sep 12, 2013
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    gardening, reading, etc
    near St. Charles, MI, USoA
    Home Page:
    -15C low, 35C high, 10cm rain/mo avg, clay, full sun
    [i'm so glad i can edit an existing post instead of making a new one!]

    ah, nice to make some more progress, old-flowers gets a bunch of
    pictures taken out of it and the new page is:

    there's a few pictures added and even one from this spring.
    and yes, i did combine three pictures for this one and made
    no attempt to hide that. just wanted to do something a bit
    different for a change.


    and now others...

    Updates to:

    how could i resist a morel picture? while i was at it i added four others...

    which now brings me to a good place to take a breather on web-site editing for a while. the old flower page is now completely removed and all pictures i cared to keep on-line are in their own places. i still have some pictures to put in the various places and may do that as weather and energy permits, but for the most part i'm done for now. yay!

    ok, maybe this summer on a really hot day i'll put up a winter/ice page... :smile:

    my next big web-site project will be to get the old new-layout page either removed or fully converted, but that is likely a coming winter project.

    we had a beautiful double rainbow yesterday and i took pictures, no idea if they turned out yet...

    in the meantime, finally to the point where i can get a new computer. this one is showing signs of failing... and the gardens are coming along well. too much rain recently to be out in the clay plus we have people coming over next week so there is spring-cleaning to be done including cleaning the windows and decluttering my room a little...

    peace and love
    Last edited: May 7, 2017
  2. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

    Sep 12, 2013
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    gardening, reading, etc
    near St. Charles, MI, USoA
    Home Page:
    -15C low, 35C high, 10cm rain/mo avg, clay, full sun
    spring continues, hard frosts for a few nights. with the
    strawberries in bloom that is going to make some impact
    on the crop, but i think i have enough plants to offset that.
    we'll see. at least one large deer has been making
    frequent visits. almost all areas outside the tall fenced
    gardens have been pretty well browsed. a fair number
    of the strawberry plants have been trimmed back. i'm
    not seeing the deer poop contributions i'd like in return.
    anal retentive deer... now there's a philosophical thought...

    the honey bees have been on those strawberry blooms.

    with the large amounts of rain we've been having the farmers
    are having a tough time getting into the fields. this past week
    has given a break. starting to see more activities. mostly
    spraying herbicides for weed control.

    i've been able to do a little weeding. it's been a busy week
    with spring cleaning and indoor things. still, for the most
    part the gardens are ready to be planted i'm just waiting for
    warmer weather and a better chance at frost free evenings.

    speaking of weeding, one low area i was able to get through in
    about four hours total. it is a monoculture of luminaria (moneywort
    or creeping jenny) that will be overgrown by strawberries. i'm
    wanting to keep the grasses, horsetail, the small blue flower and
    some other weeds out of there. it looks nice when it blooms. i'll
    post some pics eventually...

    the other mixed garden space that i enjoy working on is going to
    be a good source of more green garlic. maybe as soon as
    tomorrow. if i'm back there weeding i'm also feeding this time of
    the year. i like to think it keeps the bugs away as well as the
    vampires. the grasses want to take over in there but i really
    want to have other plants instead. as i'm clearing grasses out
    i'm planting strawberries. even if the animals eat most of them
    i'll get a few for the efforts. and overall it is still a green manure
    patch so that is good for any of the other gardens which need it.
  3. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

    Sep 12, 2013
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    gardening, reading, etc
    near St. Charles, MI, USoA
    Home Page:
    -15C low, 35C high, 10cm rain/mo avg, clay, full sun
    the plants from the greenhouse are all in. :) much happiness at
    getting that done along with using 6 buckets of worms. i'm downsizing
    from 17 containers to 10 (i need that floor space back). it was only a
    temporary increase anyways as several of those buckets were
    originally meant to go elsewheres. then after i started them up last
    spring i was told that we weren't doing that anymore.

    the planting i have left to do is all beans, squash, peas and a few

    5 more buckets of worms will be going out to amend the poorest
    soil gardens i have (which were actually designed and intended
    that ways). the tulip gardens have partially been cleared of the
    tulips that were in there so i can put these worms in there and
    then i'll put beans in those gardens again. it is all empty space
    otherwise for the rest of the season and i hate to have bare earth
    when the sun is shining. 10-20 kilos of extra dry beans are good
    to have.

    and speaking of beans the lima beans i planted first have been
    coming up and growing so that makes me happy. last year i
    didn't get any planted so i really wanted a good patch of them
    this year. we both love lima beans in about any form. i also like
    that they are different and interesting growing and harvesting -
    when the pods are drying they have a pretty sharp point on the
    end (it can be painful if you aren't careful) and the pod can fling
    open and you will hear them or even see beans flying around. :)

    strawberry season is coming along, starting to have more ripen,
    but until i actually get enough harvested to do something with
    them i just eat a few here or there. the animals are certainly
    getting their fair share.

    rains have come along when it has been getting too dry so no
    complaints there in the slightest. we even had two rainbows
    yesterday from a series of storms going through. i've got a
    list of other projects to work on (of course!) and such but for the
    next week i need to focus on finishing up what i want to plant
    (as many dry beans as i can, peas (a bit late), beets and a
    few squash). then i can get back to my other projects (digging
    out invasive thistles and grasses) in between projects that Mum
    wants to do (hauling bricks).

    going to be hot already next week. a few days in the high 80sF
    (31C) already. kinda early for that heat. the peppers and
    tomatoes will like that. it has been fairly cool at night here still
    the past few weeks. one reason why i've not really wanted to
    get the greenhouse plants out in the gardens before now... just
    been a bit too cool.

    ok, i guess that is the update for now.

    put up a new pic of some white flowering ground cover plant
    we put in last fall called sandwort. looks like it will do well in
    the current location. it is not an easy place to grow things and
    can be pretty hot and dry so we'll see how it goes through this
    summer season.

  4. mischief

    mischief Senior Member

    Nov 21, 2009
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    South Waikato New ZeLeand
    Cool mountain
    Songbird, how much space do you need to use to frow 10 kg of beans, in particular Lima beans?
    I cant get my head around producing that much!! and they are supposed to be my main source of protein.
    I have obviously not been doing something right cos I havent had much success with these and I do like them best out of all the dried beans.
    The Great White Northern beans did well, but certainly not 10 kg let alone 20.
    I am obviously thinking too small I think.

    What does your mum want to do with the bricks? Edgings or paving?
  5. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

    Sep 12, 2013
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    gardening, reading, etc
    near St. Charles, MI, USoA
    Home Page:
    -15C low, 35C high, 10cm rain/mo avg, clay, full sun
    the bricks she's going to line the edge of the ditch some
    garden spaces she wanted to get rid of. a lot of work and
    something i'd never bother with. also she wants to line
    along the edge of the driveway cement, but i don't think we
    have that many bricks available. we'll see... it can start one
    way and end up completely different than what i expect.
    at least we didn't have to load them on the truck as my
    brother could use the hi-low. they are not free, but close
    enough. i would use them for something else where i could
    see them (and replace wood which will eventually rot). it's
    her gig. :) going to be hot here. great time to do such a

    the 10-20kg of beans are not all lima beans. last year i
    hardly planted any beans at all. this year i've planted
    about 20 varieties of beans including the lima beans:
    scarlet runner, yellow eye, greasy, pinto, appaloosa, painted
    pony, edamame, and a half dozen cross breeds along with the
    fresh eating beans (green and wax). still have one garden left
    to go. we have so many rabbits around this year i'm not sure
    anything planted outside the fence will make it.

    the scarlet runner beans are so pretty when they flower and
    are a perennial in warmer climates, the roots are also
    supposed to be and edible tuber. i've never seen them,
    if they grow this season i'll have to dig up the roots and
    check it out.

    for lima beans it takes 100-110 days for the Fordhook type
    we've been growing. you may want to try some other types.
    i pretty much like every bean i've ever tried. i have had no
    success with certain ones because of our climate (we get some
    rains later in the season and that doesn't go well with adzuki,
    blackeyed peas). even those that fare better i still often have
    to harvest the pods and dry them in trays out of the rains
    inside the garage to get any harvest.

    a Fordhook lima bean plant is pretty compact compared to
    some. one fits in a 50x50cm space, but i'm not sure how
    productive each plant is. i never actually count seeds i've
    planted to see what the end weight result per plant is. i
    could actually do that this season for the lima beans. they
    are in a nice row.

    by contrast some of the climbing beans i have get pretty
    big (3 meters or more), the greasy and scarlet runners can
    top our fence pretty easily. i like using the north side to
    grow the climbers since then they don't block the sunlight
    from the rest of the gardens. use that space! :)

    every year i keep finding more interesting things about beans
    and see more varieties than those that i have (and i have so
    many i can't possibly plant them all out each year). i find the
    cross-breeds interesting too. like pebbles on the beach with
    many not even looking alike.

    i wish it were easy to send seeds around the world as it is so
    fun to grow new things and to see how they fare in different

    northern beans are one of the standards grown in this area
    along with what are called navy or pea beans. a smaller white
    bean. having eaten so many million tons of them in my life
    already i don't even bother growing many of the white beans.
    the greasy beans are a white bean that i grow only because they
    are an old line grown in the southern states in the hills. in the
    older days each family had their own seed line. the ones i have
    are just barely able to put on a crop here. they need a bit longer
    season, but because they taste good cooked even when the
    pods are full of beans (but not dried yet). in the old days people
    would also string them up green and dry them for something
    called leather britches. which can then later be cooked/rehydrated.
    we like the dry beans and then cooked. :) i figure having a bean
    that can tolerate the hotter southern climate isn't a bad thing if the
    seasons get a bit longer and hotter up here. i don't mind if they
    cross-breed. i think it is always interesting to see what happens
    and then try to test the new arrivals out to see how they do in
    our soils and climate. some don't do well at all, but a few seem
    to do very well.

    i could use a lot more space and more people... hahaha... i
    didn't really even answer your question. i'm guessing i could
    get a kilo out of 3-6sq meters depending upon what type of
    bean it is. some of them are so small that it really takes a fair
    amount of space to get a kilo and i have a few varieties that
    don't produce very strongly in our climate and/or soil, but i like
    them for decorative or cross-breeding purposes so i will grow a
    few each season hoping to get them to cross with the pinto or
    other very productive varieties.

    the challenge of testing out a cross-breed in limited space is
    there too. going from one or a few seeds up to having enough
    that you can cook some up and eat them. i have too many
    now that i'll never be able to do that with them. i have a single
    container of thousands of beans most of them are different from
    each other. every season i get more...
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2017

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