Help! Vegetable garden pestsComments (8)Yeah, my fiance planted the seeds too closely together, we were going to thin then when they grew, but I've removed them and replanted given the leaf damage. Here's another pic from the damage I found yesterday (this is of the beans, while the first was of the squash). These also just have nibbles out of them (although it's worth noting that my radish and eggplant sprouts were completely demolished last week, not just nibbled). I'm 99.999% sure it's not rabbits, as we rent and our backyard is enclosed with wooden fencing. I do trust they could find a way in; however, we've lived here for 2 years and I've NEVER seen a rabbit. Furthermore, I planted veggies last year and I didn't have this problem. Not sure if this info is useful, but last year we planted much later in the season, and while we did have a bird feeder, the resident bird count has increased SIGNIFICANTLY! Also, the bed is right next to a large bush where the birds live, so perhaps they feel it's encroaching on their territory and trying to prove a point! :) Anyway, I've put up the row covers, so I guess we'll see. One more thing...does this look at all like it could be the work of a grasshopper? I saw a very large one in my yard last week (although not anywhere near the veggie garden), and I had trouble last year with hoppers eating my basil. If it is him, I'm a bit surprised because I have two small potted basil plants i on a fence shelf right now, and they are untouched. Thanks all so much for the continued feedback! I'm a newbie constantly running into issues - it's so great to have people to go to for info! Laura...See More
Help with vegetable garden designComments (8)I built raised beds with cedar once & made them 4' wide. I realized that is pretty deep and it's possible to create a thicket of tomato plants that are impenetrable. I really strongly suggest 3' wide beds. Especially if you are a female of average height (men have longer arms & tend to be taller, I think some dude came up with that 4' width on raised beds). As for soil, this is a GREAT time to get some leaves in lovely paper bags. Keep them moist all winter & in spring of 2013 you will have great material to work with. If you have a lawnmower with a bag on the back, mow up your leaves (and grass) and you might be lucky enough to have decent texture material for the bottom 6" of your beds in the spring of 2012. You'll still have weed seeds in there, but it will help fill the bed and with 10" of dirt on top the weed seeds are unlikely to make any progress. Are there any farms/barns nearby? Do you have space to dedicate to aging a pile of manure over the winter? When I made beds I didn't do it the "right" way but it still worked well enough. We had clay soil (I was living in the south then) and I bought bales of peat moss at the local big-box store. I had a pile of clay soil & would mix the clay with the peat moss & a little bagged composted cow manure. The ratio was about 1 part clay soil, 2 parts peat, 1/2 part cow manure. I went heavy on the peat b/c the clay was red, heavy, dense stuff that needed a lot of lightening up. Again, it wasn't the ideal set up but it did grow veggies really well that first year. After that we had to move (job relocation) so we dismantled the beds & spread the soil/peat mix to plant it out as lawn so we could sell the house. So I can't speak to the long term validity of that kind of soil mix. Good luck whatever you do, though!...See More
Planting wedding flowersComments (9)Yes, knowing the timing of the wedding would help greatly .... "So, her picks are Orchids, Lilies, Lily of the valley, tulips, snapdragons and bleeding hearts." ... As others have said, forget about thinking about orchids as something you'd be able to grow in your garden. ... Lilies are a great idea, though tough being able to get the timing right, and also you'd need to plant LOTS of bulbs, and HOPE they'd bloom the first year! Also, this would not be an inexpensive option. ... Lily of the valley, forget about these, unless you know someone who has an established patch ... a new planting would not likely even flower the first season! ... Tulips, sounds like a good idea if you have a spring wedding and the timing is correct. Otherwise, just takes a few days of extreme heat and they'd be toast! ... Bleeding hearts, now these bloom over a longer period, though would be finished flowering in early mid summer or so .... UNLESS, you have some of the smaller flowered fern leaf types that bloom their heads off till frost? ... Snapdragons are likely the best choice of all things you've listed, though not so great if the wedding is early in the season. I'm sorry if I sound rather negative on many of the above selections, though I'd hate to see you do a ton of planting only to be disappointed! ... BUT, BUT, BUT, there's MANY very good ANNUALS you could look into! Asters Ageratum "Lielani Blue" in particular Amaranthus Bachelor Buttons Calendulas Cosmos Rudbeckias Zinnias Sunflowers ... small flowered types ... As with any of the above, select varieties with long stems suitable for cutting. Also, cut some of each as a test to see how individual types hold up without wilting. You don't want a few wilted flowers to spoil the look of your bouquets! HAPPY GROWING! Terry...See More
Which lots would be best?Comments (20)We rejected a lot of places just to be able to have the rear of our home face south. Think about how much any up front cost will mean to you in ten years. Also, garages can 'shelter' the house in cold climates; north is good. Is 'flipping' this plan an option? Re: Plans. I didn't elaborate because you probably can't change the plan. I don't like a 'walk through' bathroom. (Just 'me'.) I'd want the toilet room on the outside wall, with a window, and the shower interior. A pocket door may be your only option for the toilet room, but I resist that for a much-used door. Will you *use* a tub? (I see one in the hall bath.) Check 'elbow room' for the two sinks, and consider space behind a user for walk-through traffic. It bothers me to see closets on outside walls that could otherwise have windows in them. Often a reach-in closet is more useful in a secondary bedroom, and it can insulate against noise. I'd want much more space at the family entry, and I'd prefer a pantry there. The pantry at the inside corner of a kitchen is an old and awkward concept. A bigger closet in the back hall -- for coats, mops and to serve as pantry -- can replace expensive cabinetry in the kitchen. Is the garage wide enough to open car doors easily? (Common problem in builder plans.) Do you have children? I'd get the cheapest carpeting anyway. This is money out the window, and carpeting has a huge markup. Put money towards hard surface flooring. The pedestal sink will make the powder room look larger. You can hang cabinetry over the toilet....See More
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