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Thread: Garden Geeks thread

  1. #681
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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    So much for grape jelly. An animal muscled through my fencing, and got all of them. Bummer.

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Quote Originally Posted by walrus View Post
    pair of large vise grips
    Quote Originally Posted by Carter View Post
    Both my Wisconsin family and my old Iowa neighbor used nothing fancier than a chunk of steel to serve as an anvil and a claw hammer. I'd be glad to lend you our old nutcracking anvil if you'd like to try it.
    I tried hammering them two years ago, when I last had any. Too many shards of shell in with the walnuts. Looking for a better option for this year. I've found some good crackers online, but they are pricey.
    Last edited by MadTownSioux; 09-11-2015 at 04:24 PM.
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  3. #683
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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Quote Originally Posted by MadTownSioux View Post
    ...they are pricey.
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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Quote Originally Posted by MadTownSioux View Post
    So, after no response on the food thread, I'll ask here. Does anybody have a recommendation on a good Black Walnut cracker? After no walnuts last year, there are quite a few this year. Thanks for any help.
    I think there is a way to smash them and then toss them in water to separate shell from nutmeat and then dry the nutmeat out but I know nothing about the details (do the shells float while the nutmeat sinks? I don't know that even...) and I could have this mixed up with a different kind of nut.

    a lot depends upon how many nuts you have and how much time and patience you have available. for conventional walnuts at the holidays a pair of cheap nutcrackers works fine and they double for use with crab legs and lobster claws too.

    when I was younger, with regular walnuts the method I liked best was just to hold two in one hand and squeeze hard until one cracked (you line up the rims against each other). That was far neater than a nutcracker and it left most of the nutmeat intact too. I still have the strength to do it but it seems to shred my skin more now than it did then.
    Last edited by FreshFish; 09-11-2015 at 04:54 PM.
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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Quote Originally Posted by walrus View Post
    pair of large vise grips
    What Wally said... just adjust them to the right pressure for each nut, and you'll have a handy tool as well.

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  6. #686
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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Quote Originally Posted by walrus View Post
    One year we had Raccoons wreak havoc on our replacement hens. I used to go out to close them in the coop at dusk with a .22 that had a 4 cell maglite duck taped to it. Took out 8 that summer. I had electric fence around the coop that stopped them from getting the hens but they liked the feeder in the yard. Big oak in the yard, up they'd go and then down they'd come
    Locking up the food would stop them from raiding the food.

    Lost one of my hens today. I was just leaving for work and I look over to the mobile pen to see that they're all paniced up against the fence. I look over there a little closer and that's when the hawk must have looked up and saw me and took off from inside of my walk in chicken tractor, where he had my Iowa Blue pullet. Bugger must have just killed her as he really hadn't gotten into eating her it looked like. Rounded up the rest of the flock to lock them up, and put the body outside of the coop. One poor girl was in the nest box just terrified. Really think I'm going to turn the door on the coop into a Dutch Door now so that I can keep the top door closed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigmrg74 View Post
    Locking up the food would stop them from raiding the food.

    .
    After they killed most of our replacement hens and meat birds. I wasn't in the mood

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    I can tell autumn is here. Morning glories are starting to bloom.

    We also planted a companion flower called a moonflower which is like an "evening glory": white instead of blue, blooms at dusk instead of dawn. Both have been flowering lately.
    "Hope is a good thing; maybe the best of things."

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    For people who like both big showy flower gardens and detective shows (murder mystery division), Netflix has a British import called Rosemary and Thyme about a plant pathologist, Rosemary Boxer, and a former police constable, now her partner, Laura Thyme. They travel around England and Europe fixing problems in people's gardens, and somehow, everywhere they go, a person winds up dead and they wind up figuring out who did it. Light fluffy fun, and some great gardens from time to time.
    "Hope is a good thing; maybe the best of things."

    "Beer is a sign that God loves us and wants us to be happy." -- Benjamin Franklin

    "Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy." -- W. B. Yeats

    "People generally are most impatient with those flaws in others about which they are most ashamed of in themselves." - folk wisdom

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    We had a hard frost Monday night. Tuesday morning, everything in the garden was dead.

    Fortunately we harvested all the beans, tomatillos, and tomatoes over the weekend. Have quite a few green tomatoes wrapped in newspaper to ripen.

    I really miss the morning glories though. They were spectacular this year. Over a dozen every day on the trellis that frames the south gate to the garden.

    Soon it will be time to dig leaves into the soil and cover with black groundcover fabric for the winter.
    "Hope is a good thing; maybe the best of things."

    "Beer is a sign that God loves us and wants us to be happy." -- Benjamin Franklin

    "Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy." -- W. B. Yeats

    "People generally are most impatient with those flaws in others about which they are most ashamed of in themselves." - folk wisdom

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Our garden is coming along pretty well, except the garlic has been trouble. Arugula, kale, romaine, beets, carrots, pumpkins and watermelon are all coming along. And some onions we had given up on popped up over the weekend, so that was fun. We planted to garlic in mid September, per local planting guides and only a few are just poking up. The farm we got them from then told me they shouldn't be planted until November first, so there's a disconnect between the farm and planting guides. Hopefully we get some more given we had bought some ajo rojo and sonoran especially for growing in the desert.

    Oh, and our grape vines are bad shape with leaf hoppers continuing despite several sprayings and skeletonizers now joining in (sprayed them several times also). Not sure if the grape vines are worth the trouble given the proliferation of pests that get them and one of the three already looks like it is dying. Arg!
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  12. #692
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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    My garden got killed dead by a heavy frost last weekend. I was getting a little sick of tomatoes anyway.
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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Got a hard frost here too. I had decommissioned my garden because I want to expand it, but I had put a few "volunteer" tomatillos in pots. Don't know exactly what I would have done with them, maybe try to trim them back and grow them inside with plant lights. Just before I went to bed I looked at the outside thermometer and it said 33 and didn't feel like bringing them inside and sure enough, next morning they were dead.

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FreshFish View Post
    We had a hard frost Monday night. Tuesday morning, everything in the garden was dead.

    Fortunately we harvested all the beans, tomatillos, and tomatoes over the weekend. Have quite a few green tomatoes wrapped in newspaper to ripen.

    I really miss the morning glories though. They were spectacular this year. Over a dozen every day on the trellis that frames the south gate to the garden.

    Soon it will be time to dig leaves into the soil and cover with black groundcover fabric for the winter.
    We pulled out everything that was worth bothering with a few weeks ago, and I've been moving the portable fencing around the garden for my chickens to tear it up, and they love to do that. when we planted everything in the spring, we broke open the straw bales and set the slabs on the garden to keep the weeds down. I had them around the coop to keep them warm and out of the wind last winter. They love tearing that old straw up, and they have done other things there that will help the garden next year.
    bueller: Why is the sunset good? Why are boobs good? Why does Positrack work? Why does Ferris lose on the road and play dead at home?

    It just happens.


    nmupiccdiva: I'm sorry I missed you this weekend! I thought I saw you at the football game, but I didn't want to go up to a complete stranger and ask "are you Monster?" and have it not be you!

    leswp1: you need the Monster to fix you

    Life is active, find Balance!massage therapy Ann Arbor

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    The day before the frost killed everything, we picked all the green tomatoes, wrapped them in newspaper, and stored them in a box in a cool room. Last week, we unwrapped them, and they had ripened. Most of them became sauce, a few wound up in salads.

    Overall, the best year for tomatoes out of the past 6. Although spraying fungicide every week was not much fun, it did work.
    "Hope is a good thing; maybe the best of things."

    "Beer is a sign that God loves us and wants us to be happy." -- Benjamin Franklin

    "Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy." -- W. B. Yeats

    "People generally are most impatient with those flaws in others about which they are most ashamed of in themselves." - folk wisdom

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    phew, just in time...

    We have a water line that runs from the house to the back of our lot. Every fall, not only do I need to shut off the water supply to it, I also need to blow it clear (it would be a real pain to have to replace a burst pipe underground...). I had meant to do it this past weekend. Last night, when I got to the train station, my car window already had some frost on it, and so when I got home I shut off the water supply and opened the tap, and some water trickled out....it had started to freeze but had not yet frozen solid enough to burst the pipe.
    "Hope is a good thing; maybe the best of things."

    "Beer is a sign that God loves us and wants us to be happy." -- Benjamin Franklin

    "Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy." -- W. B. Yeats

    "People generally are most impatient with those flaws in others about which they are most ashamed of in themselves." - folk wisdom

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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Broke thru an inch os of frost to dig carrots for thanksgiving. Supposed to warm up so I'm going to cover rest of row with a foot or so of leaves so I can dig rest later on, supposed to get wicked sweet if you do that, going to find out
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    Re: Garden Geeks thread

    Quote Originally Posted by walrus View Post
    Broke thru an inch os of frost to dig carrots for thanksgiving. Supposed to warm up so I'm going to cover rest of row with a foot or so of leaves so I can dig rest later on, supposed to get wicked sweet if you do that, going to find out
    I hope it works....once frost sets in for the winter here, it gets hard even to get a shovel into the ground....though I suppose the composting leaves will keep the ground softer.


    For some reason it brings to mind a memory from childhood. During autumn, the street sweepers would pile all the fallen leaves into one huge mound, maybe six or seven feet high by nine or ten feet across. (later, a front-loader and dump truck would pick them up). We could build forts in them, burrow down and hide, etc. If a pile had sat there for several days, and you burrowed down far enough, you'd get to the moldering part, which would be steaming and warm. that was fun.
    "Hope is a good thing; maybe the best of things."

    "Beer is a sign that God loves us and wants us to be happy." -- Benjamin Franklin

    "Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy." -- W. B. Yeats

    "People generally are most impatient with those flaws in others about which they are most ashamed of in themselves." - folk wisdom

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    Quote Originally Posted by FreshFish View Post
    For some reason it brings to mind a memory from childhood. During autumn, the street sweepers would pile all the fallen leaves into one huge mound, maybe six or seven feet high by nine or ten feet across. (later, a front-loader and dump truck would pick them up). We could build forts in them, burrow down and hide, etc. If a pile had sat there for several days, and you burrowed down far enough, you'd get to the moldering part, which would be steaming and warm. that was fun.
    We used to just burn them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by theprofromdover View Post
    We used to just burn them.
    The leaves or the children?

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