Winter gardening chores!:)

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Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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I've gotten started on my winter gardening chores,,,mainly by getting back on rock picking!,,,I did also get another truck load of old hay to use as mulch, some of it will cover my Jerusalem Artichokes to keep the ground from freezing solid as soon, the rest will be used as mulch for my trees.

The hay I added to the compost pile hasn't even gotten a noticeable amount of more decay to it than when I added it, it sheds water too well. I even tried watering it every day for a while, covering it with plastic, but the fresh green clippings and weeds from the garden just dried out and I think I have a pile of only dry brown material (for those that don't know, you need both fresh green plant mater and dry brown plant material ) in order for to have the best compost,,,,but now I have tried putting dirt on top of the compost pile and it is finally beginning to decompose!

I feel highly motivated about how my rock picking and new pond are going to help me beat the drought,,,with a little help from above!;) He has already been helping out by putting the spring there where the gravel was dug from, and (even though we were behind normal precipitation again last I new) we had had the wettest year I can remember since the drought began!

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YOU ARE a busy bee! We tore

YOU ARE a busy bee!
We tore up my gardena d tilled it all under 2 weekends ago. I still have to trim the butterfly bushes back.
Today, I got the shelters ready for winter. I bought a straw bale and took all th eold straw out of all the shelters and replaced it with fresh sweet smelling straw. Also re-enforced a few with construction strength plastic and places the old straw on top and around the shelters.

I'll check the shelters when it rains, snows to make sure they are all dry.

deb

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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I try to Bee!

I have very little wild life,,,other than deer and birds, the clump of young cottonwoods/poplars down in the gravel pit makes a good thicket for the deer, and I plan on making bird houses for the birds. I keep thinking I should get some little houses for my cats to get into for shelter from the elements etc., I just keep forgetting about it (they always seem to be in the porch when a storm comes, simply amazing how they know).

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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More chores!

I got some more rock picking done again the last few days,,,though I had to take several days off from it first as I had over done it a bit and wore myself too thin.

I also tried out my new pole pruner yesterday and did more with it today,,,I was surprised how well it works! I used some of the better clippings to start rooting as cuttings at the edge of the pond.

I also got the squash vines cleaned up and added to the second compost pile I started. I still need to get the same done with my tomato vines, measly corn stalks, and canes from the Jerusalem Artichokes.

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Turned over more rocks,

I got the tractor running today and turned up more rocks. I think I got down deeper than last time, and there is lots of moisture in the soil!:)

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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FEW!

I finally got the rest of the old hay I was given loaded up on the truck, now I just need to get this last load spread out as mulch.

sussexman's picture
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Winter Chores?

My you have all been busy little bees haven't you. Me I'm still working out what I can leave till after Christmas and what I should be doing now. You know my saying'Dig a little Dream a lot' Well I'm doing a lot of dreaming lately and not much digging. My Dahlias, sweet peas and roses are still flowering. If they aren't thinking it winter why should I spoil their fun.
Sussexman

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Speaking of roses!

My rose bush is growing more now than it did all summer, I just planted it this last spring.

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Taking a break,,,

I'm taking a break from my winter garden chores, not much left to do anyway,,,at least not till much nearer spring, just adding flower pot contents to compost pile and maybe turning the pile once between now and spring. The pruning is mostly done, and rock picking will have to wait till the snow thaws out at least. Though I do need to get back to finishing the green house while I'm not too busy doing things.

Yesterday I went hunting while on my break from gardening and winter gardening chores, my brother and I probably walked a mile or two in the snow, which was drifted knee deep or deeper, we didn't get any thing, but we still have time before my brother has to go home for us to go back and get one.

Redmink's picture
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It IS Time

Good luck in hunting Larry, and it's so nice that you can go out with your brother, even if you don't bag anything. I've heard those muley's can be wiley! But just getting "out there" can make the day too.

Knee-deep snow ... wow. Do you use snowshoes?

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Thanks!

I got a young Doe, which makes about the best eating you can get from a deer. I took near 10 pounds of scrap meat to get turned into Bratwursts!

No,,,no snow shoes, just have to step higher, or swing my legs harder!

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Thanks!

I got a young Doe, which makes about the best eating you can get from a deer. I took near 10 pounds of scrap meat to get turned into Bratwursts!

No,,,no snow shoes, just have to step higher, or swing my legs harder!

Redmink's picture
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Congrats Larry

Better than a stringy ol' buck any day!

I've got Jim Zumbo's cookbook ... need any ideas?

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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RE: Jim Zumbo's cookbook,,,

I think I've got some pretty good venison cooks staying with me, but if we need any help I'll let you know.

Redmink's picture
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Save me a bite,

I'll be right over!!

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Snow,,,

Since I feel up to doing rock picking, and there isn't too much wind to go out doors,,,of course all the rocks are buried under the snow!:( But at least that means a bit of moisture!:),,,and of course I probably only feel like rock picking since it's a good day to spend mostly in doors!,,,I was sure looking forward to a good long bike ride this morning, good thing I got in 5 or 6 miles yesterday!

Redmink's picture
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RE: Snow

For the last week we've been tantalized with a forecast of snow flurries ... on ... off ... on ... today .... no ... this weekend ...

I wish it would get here already (I hate being teased like this).

I found some ol' friends on Facebook who live near Albany NY, I should just go visit!!!

:)

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Fire wood,,,

Friday afternoon I went with my brother-in-law and got a pickup load of wood. We have been going through so much of that this winter!

Redmink's picture
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RE: Firewood

I hear that. A friend of mine in southern New Hampshire also uses quite a bit of wood. But this summer he and his 3 boys did some major overhauling on the house, like siding, roofing ... I'll need to check in on him to see if he's using less wood.

Don't know if you have a copy of the 2009 Almanac, but on the month page for October on the far right is the "Farmer's Calendar" and it's a story about building woodpiles "plumb and square ... each chunk looks to have been selected and placed with the skill of a mason ... it seems important" and why?

Stay warm Larry!

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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RE: Firewood,

Thanks!

Last night was about the first time I even had to turn on the heated mattress pad, but I stayed pretty warm with it. This morning at 9 a.m. the temperature was -12 deg F here.

Redmink's picture
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*yikes*

Good thinkin' on havin' one!!

Our 2.5" snow was/is followed by temps in 20's/30's ... kinda glues my nose together when I breathe. ;-D

Redmink's picture
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25?

.
Sounds tropical today!! Wind chills have us at 10 degrees!

**double yikes**

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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RE: *yikes*

I've been doing pretty good with the cold temp's, I usually have an itchy feeling in my throat and lungs when I go for a walk in it, but not this time!:-D

Redmink's picture
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Itchy Throat/Lungs

I hate that feeling or do I hate trying to breathe with a scarf wrapped around my lower face which fogs up my glasses?!?!???

Good that your itchies went away, probably means all that exercise is getting your system in good order!

Nothin' like a hot glass of lemon and honey to get those itchies out.

The Almanac shows Halcyon Days coming up, which means nicer days ... I'll just hunker down and do indoor stuff until then.

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Thanks Redmink!

Lemon and honey, that sounds good too!

I'm looking forward to nicer days already, I'm itching to get back to some rock picking, The trenches made by my ditch digger are drifted full to the brim! I best pick the rocks in and around them and make some more,,,when the ground isn't frozen! The freezing and thawing should loosen up some more rocks too, this always saves time and energy with a bar to pry them up. But other than making it miserable to,,,or at least hard too work outside, I love the cold wintry weather! I spent some time splitting wood in the bitter cold, and still got over-heated, the colder it is the harder I feel like working!;-)

Redmink's picture
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Don't Look Now

But I think I see a Big Blue Ox settling in at Larry's House! Must be visiting from that legendary woodsman Paul.

Larry, I've done my fair share of wood chopping and I know what you mean. All I can see is lots of nice wood for a cold evening when I'm too tire to move!

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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YUP!

Such a feeling of self worth isn't it?!

Redmink's picture
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Agreed

.
And self-worth too.

Whenever I'm driving around and see someone's woodpile rotting, I wonder why if they can't be bothered to sell it, post a sign that says "please help yourself".

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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RE: Agreed!

Sure would be better to give it away than let it rot!

The other day I finally found out what the cactus I found by the road a few years ago is, a Yellow Pin Cushion Cactus, I read that it gets edible berries!

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Still waiting,,,,,

Still waiting for warm enough weather to melt the snow enough to find the rocks to go rock picking,,,,so much of that needs to be done so badly here, I just hope I still feel up to it when it does warm up!

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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Snow melting!

The snow is melting really good today!:-)

I've been fighting off a cold the last few days, I'm over the worst of it now, and should be just fine by the time the snow gets melted enough to find those rocks.

I've got lots of drifts to add ground water to help feed the pond, should help the grass/other vegetation sprout up quick and strong next spring too!:-D

Redmink's picture
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Snow Falling!

.
You deserve a melt!

Tomorrow, a big storm is coming up the East Coast, expected 2-4" of snow, but I don't like the forecast map showing several states covered in icy mix first!

Better get out and pick up a few supplies!

Larrys Rock Garden's picture
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More on forecast!

More snow for me according to the forecast, just when I was hoping to get something done!

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