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elizabeth [userpic]
Merry Meet!
by elizabeth (elizabeth_rv)
at June 14th, 2007 (05:57 pm)

Hi, I'd love to hear what's in your garden, and look at any garden pics you post. I've got a few pics up at my lj as well as my "planted today" lists.. which if you check out you might notice some of which are daringly late this year, as I didn't start seeds under lights this early spring (I was growing wheat grass for my cats) :D I'm in Massachusetts where the growing season kinda doesn't start until the end of May anyway, lots of short season crops for me, especially this year. How about you? Where do you garden?

I've been into permaculture, organic gardening, heirloom seed, biodiversity, herbs, and companion planting for 4 or 5 years now, before that I lived in an apartment with no patio, so my living room had big tables full of herb plants up against every window. Man is it awesome to be able to get to know how to garden on the land! I love it.

So, what's in your garden this year, what are your favorites to grow, are you trying any new things this year, what are some of your uses for what you grow? Whatever you want to tell me about is fun.


Posted by: oklahomarose (oklahomarose)
Posted at: June 22nd, 2007 11:43 am (UTC)

Hi! I live in East Tennessee, and I've always loved gardening. As the years pass, I'm finally getting most of the plants that I want. I'm partial to perennials, but some annuals are okay too.

Plants I have in my garden (not all in the same bed of course):
Passion Flower
Silver Thyme (smells great!)
Garlic (and tons of it!)
Spearmint (ditto)
Lemon Balm (does anyone know a use for it?)
Plus a lot of purely ornamental plants:
Roses, Monkey Grass, Lilies, Astilbe, Daffodils, Tulips, Climatis, Jasmine, Coleus...
And what I think is a wild grape vine starting up a tree...

On compost: My husband built a composter for me out of a 50 gallon drum turned on its side (complete with a wooden frame and handles for turning). In it we use the litter from the rabbits that we raise as well as shredded paper, coffee grounds, veggie scraps, and most of the weeds we pull out of the garden. It works wonders!

Posted by: elizabeth (elizabeth_rv)
Posted at: June 23rd, 2007 07:28 am (UTC)

Ooh, lots of wonderful plants...I'm partial to perennials too, they make a real cottage garden... and what an amazing composter story, wow, that's so cool!

There are tons of uses for lemon balm, you can use it in cleaning, homemade cosmetics, tea, strewing, you'll have many to choose from.

How do you find growing cabbage in terms of organic pest control? I was reading about all these insects that bother cabbage and cabbage-family plants, and a couple of my kale plants (also cabbage family) have suspicious holes in the leaves this year... I never see the culprits... I plan on spraying a cayenne/garlic tea. What do you do?

Posted by: oklahomarose (oklahomarose)
Posted at: June 25th, 2007 10:37 am (UTC)

Every time I try to grow cabbage (including this time), I've had problems with cabbage worms. I've found that cayenne-based mixtures do work better than any other organic deterrant, but even when I reapply the stuff after a rain the worms just keep coming back. If I can't get a handle on it this year, I probably won't grow cabbages again because I have yet to be able to actually eat any of them that I've grown! I haven't tried the cayenne/garlic tea, so I'll try it and hopefully that will be the answer!

Posted by: elizabeth (elizabeth_rv)
Posted at: June 25th, 2007 05:56 pm (UTC)
upside down it looks like the flowers

Hey, check out what happens to be today's Daily Action over at Care2: a recipe for a garden spray that uses Dr. Bronner's soap and garlic:

I happened to be reading that right before I read your message :) (Care2 is an environmental activism site, they have a neat arrangement where all you have to do is click on issues you like, and their sponsors make *donations* for those causes, totally free. I also like their "green kitchen" area, you might like it too.) Anyway, I'm going to try that spray, maybe with some cayenne in there too...I've heard of sprays with garlic and vegetable oil, but I don't want oil residue on my plants. I think a little Bronner's would be ok though.

Last night I was thumbing through a copy of "The Findhorn Garden," and the gardeners were saying the plants told them to imagine (the plant's) healthy life force as very strong, and send this to the plant, and then it can fend off bugs better. I do some of that but I could always do more & see what happens.

Posted by: oklahomarose (oklahomarose)
Posted at: June 26th, 2007 03:15 pm (UTC)

Thanks for sharing this link, it's right up my alley!!!
I've printed the recipe, but I didn't see where it said to use a specific type of soap (other than to make sure it's liquid). I wonder if other soaps would work...

I have a book that's been a wonderful resource to me: Jerry Baker's Backyard Problem Solver. Here are two recipes from the book (I use the cabbage worm recipe only because it's a bit easier):

Knock 'em Dead Insect Spray:
6 cloves finely chopped garlic, 1 finely chopped small onion, 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper, 1 tablespoon liquid dishsoap. Mix with 1 quart warm water and let sit overnight. Strain, pour it into a spray bottle, and go!

Cabbage Worm Wipeout:
1 cup flour, 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper. Mix and sprinkle onto cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower (coat them well). The flour makes the worms swell and kills them, the cayenne keeps other bugs away!

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