Apr. 25th, 2009

Gardening

Apr. 25th, 2009 11:51 am
helen99: Magic garden (Magic Garden)
Today is another day outdoors. Hauling more rocks from the garden to the road, placing watering cones with inverted glass bottles where the strawberries are, slightly watering the greens outdoors, watering the raspberries.

Edit at around 2 pm: Thinking of sheet mulching an area for the tomatoes to keep the weeds down, but still not sure if I'll do that. Suddenly it's around 90 degrees out. What happened to spring? I worked on the road a little and the sun wiped me out. Taking a short break...

Edit at around 6 pm: Went back out around 5 and laid out the newspapers on a small part of the garden to prepare for sheet mulching. Came in for another break. 97 degrees today... Headed back out to add water to the newspapers, then sawdust, then more water, then compost mix, then straw then more water. Temperature should be cooling down now...

Edit at around 7:40 pm: Added the water, then added sawdust on top of the newspapers, then some compost mix on top of the sawdust. As I was in the process of spreading compost mix, however, [personal profile] rialian came out with a new box of bees which he was about to introduce to the top bar. So (as some may remember from a beekeeping workshop last year) part of the introduction involves shaking thousands of bees into the hive out of the little package box that they come in. In a regular Langstroth beehive, you can just put the whole box into the hive and let them exit into the frames at their own pace. However, the package dimensions are not designed for a top bar. Hence, shaking the bees.

Now, the first time he did this with our hive last year, the bees were very gentle. Nothing happened - they just went on about life as usual, as if they'd always been there. Well.. these didn't act like that. Maybe the heat had riled them up or something, but they were one hive full of angry bees. They went into attack mode and started flying around menacingly. So... taking a short break while they calm down. I should have the rest of the compost mix and straw on the garden patch by sunset. Hopefully. If the bees let me...

Due to our lightfooted evasive action, nobody got stung. I had two chasing me for a while. I ran down the driveway, then doubled back to evade them, then doubled back again when they followed. Rialian headed them off while I escaped to the house. He told them to "go back to the hive". I'm not sure if they did....

Edit: So ... went back out to the garden. The bees hadn't calmed down quite yet. One of them flew at me - didn't sting, but kept buzzing me and tickling my arm, so to speak. I decided to leave and let them calm down some more, but this one decided to follow. I began walking quickly down the driveway toward the house, and it hitched a ride... somewhere in my hair. So no matter which way I went, the bee was right there with me. Rialian came over and said everything was fine, there were no bees following me. Right. That was because it was in my hair. Just then the bee noticed Rialian and left my hair and chased him for a while. Still didn't sting. Interesting bees. So anyway, I went back into the house for a few, then came out. I changed out of my black teeshirt and put on a white one with some light colored pants. I wore a white teeshirt on my head. The bees stopped bothering me at that point. I don't know if it was because of the change of wardrobe, or if it was because it was about sunset and they retired to their hive, or if it was because they just calmed down naturally, but they left me alone for the rest of the evening. I did get the compost mix spread out on top of the sawdust but left the straw until tomorrow. I did get a good start on making a rock border around the raised bed.

In other news, three mysterious babies are sprouting in a pot out front. I know I planted some seeds in that pot on a whim a few months ago. I just don't know what I planted. Maybe that's where I put the lemon seeds, or maybe apples, I don't know. I don't think they're apples, though, because the cotyledon is larger than an apple seed. The leaves look fleshy and dark and shiny, like teeny little ficus trees. So cute. Citrus. How the heck am I going to grow Citrus in Zone 6?? I guess these will be keeping us company indoors during the winter, and hogging the glass doors. Heh.

Meanwhile, in another pot, the almond tree is growing well, sprouting lots of leaves. At least we think it's an almond tree. It sprouted from the compost out of something that looked exactly like an almond. We're hoping. There are about 5 other unknown plants sprouting in that same pot. I have absolutely no idea what they are. Apple seeds? Maybe. Those cotyledons were small enough to be apple seeds.

Markers are my friends. Why didn't I use markers? This is one of those unanswered questions. Oh well. They're surprises. It will be fun to see what they become.

Gardening

Apr. 25th, 2009 11:51 am
helen99: Another Magic Garden (Another Magic Garden)
Today is another day outdoors. Hauling more rocks from the garden to the road, placing watering cones with inverted glass bottles where the strawberries are, slightly watering the greens outdoors, watering the raspberries.

Edit at around 2 pm: Thinking of sheet mulching an area for the tomatoes to keep the weeds down, but still not sure if I'll do that. Suddenly it's around 90 degrees out. What happened to spring? I worked on the road a little and the sun wiped me out. Taking a short break...

Edit at around 6 pm: Went back out around 5 and laid out the newspapers on a small part of the garden to prepare for sheet mulching. Came in for another break. 97 degrees today... Headed back out to add water to the newspapers, then sawdust, then more water, then compost mix, then straw then more water. Temperature should be cooling down now...

Edit at around 7:40 pm: Added the water, then added sawdust on top of the newspapers, then some compost mix on top of the sawdust. As I was in the process of spreading compost mix, however, rialian came out with a new box of bees which he was about to introduce to the top bar. So (as some may remember from a beekeeping workshop last year) part of the introduction involves shaking thousands of bees into the hive out of the little package box that they come in. In a regular Langstroth beehive, you can just put the whole box into the hive and let them exit into the frames at their own pace. However, the package dimensions are not designed for a top bar. Hence, shaking the bees.

Now, the first time he did this with our hive last year, the bees were very gentle. Nothing happened - they just went on about life as usual, as if they'd always been there. Well.. these didn't act like that. Maybe the heat had riled them up or something, but they were one hive full of angry bees. They went into attack mode and started flying around menacingly. So... taking a short break while they calm down. I should have the rest of the compost mix and straw on the garden patch by sunset. Hopefully. If the bees let me...

Due to our lightfooted evasive action, nobody got stung. I had two chasing me for a while. I ran down the driveway, then doubled back to evade them, then doubled back again when they followed. Rialian headed them off while I escaped to the house. He told them to "go back to the hive". I'm not sure if they did....

Edit: So ... went back out to the garden. The bees hadn't calmed down quite yet. One of them flew at me - didn't sting, but kept buzzing me and tickling my arm, so to speak. I decided to leave and let them calm down some more, but this one decided to follow. I began walking quickly down the driveway toward the house, and it hitched a ride... somewhere in my hair. So no matter which way I went, the bee was right there with me. Rialian came over and said everything was fine, there were no bees following me. Right. That was because it was in my hair. Just then the bee noticed Rialian and left my hair and chased him for a while. Still didn't sting. Interesting bees. So anyway, I went back into the house for a few, then came out. I changed out of my black teeshirt and put on a white one with some light colored pants. I wore a white teeshirt on my head. The bees stopped bothering me at that point. I don't know if it was because of the change of wardrobe, or if it was because it was about sunset and they retired to their hive, or if it was because they just calmed down naturally, but they left me alone for the rest of the evening. I did get the compost mix spread out on top of the sawdust but left the straw until tomorrow. I did get a good start on making a rock border around the raised bed.

In other news, three mysterious babies are sprouting in a pot out front. I know I planted some seeds in that pot on a whim a few months ago. I just don't know what I planted. Maybe that's where I put the lemon seeds, or maybe apples, I don't know. I don't think they're apples, though, because the cotyledon is larger than an apple seed. The leaves look fleshy and dark and shiny, like teeny little ficus trees. So cute. Citrus. How the heck am I going to grow Citrus in Zone 6?? I guess these will be keeping us company indoors during the winter, and hogging the glass doors. Heh.

Meanwhile, in another pot, the almond tree is growing well, sprouting lots of leaves. At least we think it's an almond tree. It sprouted from the compost out of something that looked exactly like an almond. We're hoping. There are about 5 other unknown plants sprouting in that same pot. I have absolutely no idea what they are. Apple seeds? Maybe. Those cotyledons were small enough to be apple seeds.

Markers are my friends. Why didn't I use markers? This is one of those unanswered questions. Oh well. They're surprises. It will be fun to see what they become.

April 2010

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