Branching Out's Seeds and Sprouts

ducks4you

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WOW! Ours were a couple of hundred $ each--double that now!--but everybody that sits on them loves them.
When family moved from West Chester, PA to Chicagoland, we took 2 Adirondack chairs with us. Though painted parents left them outside on the westside of the house...to rot and ruin.
I always remembered how comfortable they were, so about 20 years ago I told DH we should buy some.
We bought the ones like yours one month, then went back and bought the gliders the next month.
2 years ago I treated them with stain. Even though the front porch is enclosed, we keep the windows open all summer, so they get some humidity.
 

Branching Out

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Yesterday we happened across a very unexpected sight-- a patch of pigs eating pumpkins. They were so cute!
 

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Branching Out

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Big wind storm yesterday took out the lean-to structure that I have used to support bean and tomato plants for the past 15 years. When it came crashing down it landed on top of both of my Purple Sprouting Broccoli plants. Hopefully they will recover. 😖
 

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Branching Out

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It looks like we will drop down to freezing overnight and then after that we are well above zero for the next couple of weeks, so I took a couple of minutes to protect one a little patch of lettuce that is coming along really nicely. The row cover will likely help it to grow faster in the coming weeks, even if frost will not longer be a concern. The supports are called 'loop hoops', and I use stainless steel clothes pins to keep the row cover pinned in place.
 

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Branching Out

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We did a bit of brainstorming to try to figure out how to support a long section of row cover in order to prevent water from collecting and weighing down the fabric. Our prototype involved three pieces of rebar with sections of pool noodles secured over the top of the posts, which should theoretically prevent the fabric cover from being damaged. Here is a before and after shot of the bed with the cover sitting right on the seedlings, with no cover, and then one with the new higher canopy. This bed is primarily mustard greens and lettuce from seeds that were saved in the summer, with red and green Komatsuna doing especially well. The seeds were sown on September 22nd. If I could have planted the seeds a week or two earlier these plants would have been much larger by now; definitely something to keep in mind for next year.
 

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Branching Out

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This afternoon I harvest pretty much all of our carrots-- or at least all of the carrots that were left. I would estimate that the voles consumed at least 2/3 of them (several hundred), which is soul crushing. It has taken three years to learn how to grow carrots for winter harvest, and just when I figured it out these pesky vermin foiled my plans. They LOVED the sweet Kuroda Nova and Napoli and ate almost all of those-- but they hardly touched the Triton carrots. Must say that I am not partial to the Triton carrots either. :barnie
 

heirloomgal

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Awe, I'm so sorry to hear that @Branching Out. I'd be pretty crushed too. I've had my fair share of vole problems, once summer they (or possibly it) worked their way down a whole row of pole beans, killing them one by one. Maybe consider a copper wrapped antennae? I always have voles pillage my garden soil in winter, including the adjoining lawn, so I left the copper antennae's in the ground for the winter. I'll let you know if this did anything in spring. I know they sell frequency based vole deterrents at C Tire, so hopefully there is something to it.
 

flowerbug

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plus do what you can to encourage vole predators (snakes, kitties, ...).

hardware cloth along some edges may help prevent invasions.

we seem to go through cycles of them where they get more noticeable and then the predators take them down again.

in extreme times i've trapped them.
 

Branching Out

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Awe, I'm so sorry to hear that @Branching Out. I'd be pretty crushed too. I've had my fair share of vole problems, once summer they (or possibly it) worked their way down a whole row of pole beans, killing them one by one. Maybe consider a copper wrapped antennae? I always have voles pillage my garden soil in winter, including the adjoining lawn, so I left the copper antennae's in the ground for the winter. I'll let you know if this did anything in spring. I know they sell frequency based vole deterrents at C Tire, so hopefully there is something to it.
Thank you heirloomgal. The life of a gardener is fraught with peril. Lol Yesterday I didn't know if I should feel grateful to have grown such a bumper crop of carrots, or sad over having lost them. There were a lot of emotions flying around as I pulled those roots out of the ground. At least I got some, and on the up side I won't have to be out digging them during the cold dark days of winter. The soil looked amazing; if I were a rodent I would probably want to burrow there too. Let me know how your vole frequency deterrent works out. We have mouse traps set and so far we caught one critter that may have been a vole (but we're not sure if we can tell them apart yet).
 

Branching Out

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plus do what you can to encourage vole predators (snakes, kitties, ...).

hardware cloth along some edges may help prevent invasions.

we seem to go through cycles of them where they get more noticeable and then the predators take them down again.

in extreme times i've trapped them.
Thank you for these suggestions flowerbug. We used to have garter snakes when I was growing up, but you just don't see them any more. I wonder if I could re-introduce them? Hmmm There are a couple of cats in the neighbourhood, and we often see birds of prey flying overhead. Maybe I need a hawk perch. Lol
I sure hope that the voles are less of an issue next summer.
 

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