Godless in the garden

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Godless in the garden

Welcome to gardeners, growers of veggies, fruits, flowers, and trees!  

 

Welcome  backyard hen enthusiasts, worm farmers, beekeepers & composters!

Location: Planet Earth
Members: 161
Latest Activity: 7 hours ago

Welcome to Eden!

If you like to dig in the dirt, plant & prune, grow food & flowers, or sit and watch as someone else does your landscaping, you'll find something here to discuss!

Selected topics, in no particular order:
Moon Phase Widget here. Moon phase topic here.
What's your gardening style?
Frugal gardening.
Backyard Chickens here. here. here. here.
Growing Fruits
Wild Parsnip - It can burn skin.
Why buy locally-grown plants?
Squirrels.
bees.
Cheap gardening.
Buy locally grown plants to prevent blight transmission here.
Grow lots of fruits in a small space, by backyard orchard culture.

Sentient Biped's Garden Blog. Happy to add a different feed if there are suggestions.

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Comment by Sentient Biped on July 6, 2013 at 7:10pm

I let the shallots bloom to provide bee forage.  The garden books say the shallots will be smaller if allowed to bloom.  That's OK.   The variety is "Holland White".  Honeybees, and wild bees, do like them.  They seem to like thistle flowers and clover, better  Maybe it's because the white shallot flowers harbor a white,  apiivorous  arachnid?

 

Just a little point and shoot camera. I use it because if I drop or lose it, I won't be too mad at myself.

 

Chris - now I have to study up on phacelia. If bees love it, then it's gotta go into the bee garden.

Spud - thanks! I went crazy this year, starting fig cuttings. Some co-workers want starts, so I started some to give them away. Plus the starts for my own use.

Comment by Idaho Spud on July 5, 2013 at 9:12am

Sentient, I like the Brugmansia flowers.  I like most all trumpet shaped flowers.

I also enjoy the beauty of the fig leaves in your pictures.

Comment by Plinius on July 5, 2013 at 12:40am

I do hope they'll help you at work, Sentient, they should've lightened your workload long ago! I'm thinking of you.

I thought the blue flower you put in the same post was Phacelia, I know bees love it.

Comment by Sentient Biped on July 4, 2013 at 6:17pm

Here are some "cheap gardener" deck flowers in bloom now. 

All were kept over the winter by letting them dry out in October, outside but out of the rain, then stored in the garage over the winter.  I left them in the containers in the garage.  The brugmansia got an occasional glass of water, the others did not.  In April I brought outside and watered, cleaned up dead leaves and twigs.  So this year's growth is completely free.

Last year some were late season on-sale plants.  I grow  Brugmansia and Pelargoniums from cuttings, although this Brugmansia was purchased.

Doing it this way results in later flowers, compared to buying them in bloom but they are bigger and showier due to more years of growth.

 

Brugmansia

Agapanthus, Zantadeschia, Dianthus

 

Pelargonium (Geranium)

Comment by Sentient Biped on July 4, 2013 at 4:23pm

Joan, you are right - Lavatera is a type of mallow, like hibiscus, rose of sharon, malva....  I never saw a Lavatera until this year.   I don't know if it reseeds - if so, I'll plant more.  It's nice, makes a lot of sticky pollen.  All types of bees visit, winding up covered in pollen they need for protein.   Bumblebees, tiny pollinating bees, and honeybees.  This spring I saw a seedling at the nursery and bought it - lost the label and found it today.  It is Lavatera "Barnsley baby" which is like "Barnsley" only smaller.

Ruth, thanks.  I'll do that.  It will take some time.  It isn't much yet.  We bought the place 8/2012.  Many of the plants are small, or hidden by grass. Over the past year, I've added, maybe, more than 100 types of trees, shrubs, perennials.  I removed two, which are considered toxic to bees - An oleander and a pieris, and did not replace a dead azalea for the same reason.

Modern agriculture, city/town horticulture, and homeowner activities are really wreaking havoc on what used to be a rich, diverse population of beneficial insects.  I hope my two acres, a tiny drop in the bucket, will be a little "Noah's arc" for some of them.  And for me.

Comment by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on July 4, 2013 at 12:12pm

You might share some pictures of your bee garden. I'm envious. I see a lot fewer bees in my little garden now than a decade ago, even though I use no pesticides. But some are getting fertilized as I still have to deadhead the day lilies.

Comment by Joan Denoo on July 4, 2013 at 11:51am

The lovely blues and lavenders look perfect for your bees. I am not familiar with Lavatera "Barnsley". Does it reseed? It looks a little bit like Mallow; mine is in full bloom now, a pretty white color in my white bed. It reseeds profusely, but is controllable.

I have been wondering if you could keep up your work load. Some people have a difficult time retiring, and you have so many lovely things to look after, I suspect you will do just fine.

Your description of bees being active in your garden with all the lovely plants provides a nice scene for just sitting and watching. My favorite thing.   

Comment by Sentient Biped on July 3, 2013 at 10:28pm

Yum, tomatoes and okra!  I love both!  My little okras are sulking. I keep telling them "but you love heat!  What do you want?"

Joan, glad to hear you are doing well with the chemo.  You are in my  mind a lot.

Last week I was at the nursery and saw bees on a Caryopteris "Blue Mist" so I bought it.  Also a half-gallon-sized  "Goodwin Creek Grey"  lavender plant.    Bees love lavender.  Plus lavender is dry tolerant, it grows very well here, deer and rabbits avoid it, and the fragrance is amazing.  Added both to the apiary garden.  It's hot and dry, but both are tough.  With some mulch and weekly watering they should make it.  Also a Lavatera "Barnsley" which was on sale in the TLC section but is perking up after repotting.  The nursery and bee garden are therapeutic for me.  This pic is off the wikimedia commons, Carypteris doesn't photograph well but looks a lot like lavender.

File:Caryopteris clandonensis B.jpg

Today I told my supervisor it's just a matter of time before quit, I cant take the workload.  I feel bad about it, and work gives my life meaning, and I said that too.  But they demand too much.  Turnover is very high, and an old guy on cancer drugs (me) won't last in that setting either.    So after work I stopped by the beehive and they were buzzing all around me and they are building and filling more comb, and they were all over that Caryopteris and the lavender, and the clovers, collecting nectar, and I felt at peace.

Comment by Joan Denoo on July 3, 2013 at 7:21pm

It feels so good to read all your updates and the activities taking place across the US and The Netherlands. I am the lazy one of the group, take my breakfast with the critters and my afternoons with a nap. Suits me just fine. I feel great. Had a five hour session of chemo yesterday and it didn't set me back on my back side as before. So, things are getting better. 

Hope you all are well, happy, having a nice 4th of July. I shall poach a lovely salmon steak and make a cold soup to go with it. Still don't handle raw foods well. 

Comment by Annie Thomas on July 3, 2013 at 1:12pm

Sentient-

Accept for tomatoes and okra, just about everything else is already done for the season.  July and August are rest seasons here in Florida, as it is too hot to grow much.  It's also our rainy season so mold is growing on the soil and plants in many areas.  Beautiful mushrooms are all over my yard... I wish I knew which were safe to eat!  I'll be be envious of all my northern gardening friends in August, when I am just starting to replant and you are all harvesting.

 

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