Saturday, December 01, 2007

Fall Planting.

My latest experiments in life include an attempt at being more of a locavore. Combining the crayola diet with cheapskating lent itself to growing stuff right here. We planted a few things before I left for a vacation in Illinois: blueberries and blackberries, respectively, for instance.

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The blueberries need a mulch of pine tree needles and my old friend, Jud, came up with the perfect cheapskating idea for getting those. "Wait until your neighbors throw away their Christmas trees and snip off some branches." D'Oh!

We still have some raspberry bushes to plant, but we got the peach trees planted yesterday. Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

That was WORK, as the holes needed to be pretty deep and wide. Em helped me and that little job pretty much drained both of us. We'll probably get the raspberry bushes planted this week; even have a hole all ready for ONE of them. They didn't arrive until after I got to Chicago, though, so they can still stand a little more acclimating to the local climate. There's a lot to be said for acclimation, IMO. For instance, we're still HERE:

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Chicago last week was more like HERE:

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We still have highs in the 60s, 70s, and even 80s. Drops in temperature into the 40s have us turning on the heat. [Em turned the heat on while I was in Chicago, set to 74 degrees, and we still felt cold!] Sorry, Crunchie! Fortunately, the heat doesn't turn on often. Moved the rubber tree back inside. You might remember how pathetic it looked before spending this summer outside, but here's a reminder:

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It's back inside now (after a long internal debate on whether or not I wanted to let it be an outside rubber tree planted in the ground). I'll revisit that thought next year.
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I'm easing my way into post-vacation life this week. No. 1 came with Dave for a Boggle yesterday, so it's a very good thing we got the peach trees planted beforehand.

Made my last purchases of "Made in China" goods before vacation. Hadn't even noticed where the stuff was made before I bought it, but decided that "enuf is enough" after noticing. We don't celebrate Christmas, but No. 3 has a birthday on December 23, so he'll be the test case for whether Americans still make decent stuff, I suppose. Let me know, No. 3!


Diane said...

testing to see if i can log in yet...

Ooh, preview worked so here goes the real thing...

Diane said...

Yay! When I don't log in and post for a while, I have trouble remembering my log-in info so usually spend an hour experimenting with various variables before I get it.

The rubber tree looks GREAT! I just about killed ours over the summer and it was indoors. It's been a bad plant year.

Steve and the older three kids have strep right now so I've been playing slave to them over the past couple of days. I'm ready for a vacation. A real one. Involving something tropical.

Yeah, IL looked like that for us, too. We hit snow through most of Missouri on the way up and, of course, everything had a dusting of snow while we were there. The roads were good, though, so can't complain. Okay, I can still complain. It was cold. And flat. Oh, so flat.

Glad to hear you had a good trip!

Oldnovice said...

Yeah...Google taking over Blogger has our sign-in "name" as our E-mail address. You don't use Blogger and some other folks use Wordpress and other blogging software, so it's easy to forget what goes where when. <-- This is why I keep files on EVERYTHING! Of
course if my PC goes, my brain goes with it.

Was talking about our front door (and how it needs refinishing) to Jud last week and we had to go to your blog to find a picture of it. Struck me as funny that: your blog, my door. ??? Heh.

Still waiting for your Thanksgiving photos. Nag...nag...

Oldnovice said...

Raspberry bushes are almost as much work as peach trees. Hole has to be THREE times the size of the pot. The hole I thought was done was NOT. Finished that ONE, though. Other one has to wait until tomorrow. Between laundry, grocery shopping, bread baking, rotating, inventorying, and putting away the food, it's almost time to start on dinner. We have a similar schedule tomorrow with laundry, more grocery shopping, etc., but we're having dinner out with friends before we see a film. Wednesday, we're off to Winstar, so Thursday is our only chance besides tomorrow, but Thursday will be cold again (for us... it'll go lower than 60, I think). So, tomorrow it'll be. Maybe I can get Em to do a little work on it, too.

Diane said...

Garden porn has started to arrive here, over the past couple of weeks. I'm not feeling the usual excitement. I haven't even cracked open any of the catalogs and, in fact, couldn't even tell you where they are right now. Not a good sign...

What's Winstar? I remember that I used to know if that counts for anything.

#3 said...

Gah! There goes my page&.5 post!

BTW, I can't see your page diane...

#3 said...

How come the rubber trees don't stand? Is that supposed to be that way?

What is winstar? Are you guys going to the track?

Oldnovice said...

Winstar is a casino in Oklahoma. It's the closest casino to us (between 1.25 hr drive to 2 hr drive depending on whether or not Texas Motor Speedway has an event going). They offer a Blue Hair Special (my name for it, not theirs) for people over 55 on Wednesdays which includes a free breakfast buffet as well as free entry into drawings held after the breakfast.

When Em works, he works on Wednesdays, so we weren't able to take advantage of the Blue Hair Specials, but had learned of it one week before work started. We had other plans for Monday and Tuesday of the designated gambling week so went on a Wednesday by default and thought the slots a whole lot looser that day. When we heard the raffles over the loudspeaker, I asked how folks got in on that and learned of the free breakfast. So, we'd waited until work ended for the season and scheduled our trip for Wednesday a bit earlier than normal to get in the free breakfast. We got there right before a bus full of blue hairs. And, yeah ... the slots were looser again ... we had a whole day of fun AND doubled our $$.

We're going again next Wednesday to change the two-week rotation to a week where it doesn't interfere with Drinking Liberally. We're also taking a 3-day trip to West Wendover, Nevada to gamble the 21st of this month. The roundtrip airfare was something ridiculously low on that and the reviews on the three-day charters were favorable.

Rubber trees, IMO, simply don't do well inside. They get gangly, fall over, and generally display their unhappiness. They don't much like a hard frost, either, though. I'm considering a five-year plan for this one we have, gradually increasing its exposure to the outside seasonally until it gets so big that I can't bring it inside anymore and pay someone to plant it in the ground.

What happened to your post? WHAT page of Diane's can't you see?

I don't get any seed catalogs because MY garden was started by YOU, Diane! :-) There's a little green pepper right now hanging off a puny little pepper plant that's the FIRST green pepper I've ever had grow in this garden. I'll probably save it for seed as the "Little Green Pepper That Could".

I think I need to get going starting peppers, tomatoes, etc. inside THIS month so I can get them outside in time to fruit before the heat comes, engaging a number of alternative methods (container gardening, rotation, etc.) to increase my yields.

Prolly need to invest a little time and $$ in things like containers, good soil, frost covers. I also need to decide how much time I want to invest in the work involved with all that. My life is highly skewed toward the direction of fun lately (Em said my life has ALWAYS been highly skewed toward the direction of fun). :-)

Diane said...

#3, if you mean the blog listed on my profile here, there is no such thing. My blog is linked on the front page here, "the house that sweat built" or something like that. I tried setting up a blog here once upon a time but couldn't find an easy/lazy way to import my past entries from another blog home so gave up on it. And that's the story of how I came to have a blank blogger page. :-D

Mostly over strep throat here now but dealing with nasty chest congestion/coughs all around. Sleep isn't a common thing. I went to town today and bought some Mucinex for the first time today -- will see if that helps at all. I've heard good things.

In other oh-so-glamorous news, we'll be getting a little herd of goats again soon. Gotta get some fencing ready for them... somewhere. As long as we're doing that, I might just get motivated enough to start working on a chicken pen for spring. Meant to do it last year but my procrastinating genes wouldn't allow it.

So much to do, so little get-up-and-go...

Oldnovice said...

Oh, goodie! I can now ask someone I know, "Why would anyone want goats?" They eat anything and "mow" the place. Anything else? I wouldn't mind having chickens except for the need to stay home to keep them safe/tended.

Em's a living testimonial to Mucinex. It's expensive, so I'm gonna seek out generic equivalents.

So much to do, so little get-up-and-go... would be on my tombstone were it not for my desire to be cremated instead.

Diane said...

Our reasons for goats are: 1) mowing and brush-clearing, 2) meat, and 3) milk. The ones we're getting are a cross between Boer (meat breed) and Nubian (milk breed), plus some other unknown breed from a different fella that are a very hardy mountain type.

Let me know if you find a generic answer to Mucinex. I didn't even bother to look since this was our first time buying it AND I had 6 whiny people at home waiting on it.

Oldnovice said...

Guaifenesin. Whole lot cheaper than Mucinex!

Anna said...

Thanks for the tip on old christmas trees. My neighbor throws his in the back by my lawn. I wanted to use pine mulch this summer because the slugs just liked the straw way too much. anna