Cottage Gardening forum: #6 Piggy Swap Chat

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Jan 28, 2014 4:04 PM CST
Name: Joseph
Cache Valley Great Basin
Landrace: locally-adapted diversity
Sorellina: Can you recommend a size for pots for the Jagodka tomatoes? They are strongly determinate. They got about 18" long last summer in the garden.
Author of Mother Earth News Blog about Landrace Gardening: Lofthouse
Jan 28, 2014 6:24 PM CST
Name: Julianna
Victoria, BC USDA Zone 8
Joseph, I use IKEA plastic waste paper baskets for growing my determinate and dwarf tomatoes. I drill 1/2" holes in the bottom and put chunks of brick before adding Pro-Mix to keep the plants from toppling over in strong winds. I add 1 scoop of pelleted time-release fertilizer like Osmocote to the Pro-Mix and mix it in well. I add another 1/2 scoop in the bottom of the growing hole before adding the plant. I use a cheap wire cage around each one and a 4 ft rubberized metal stake. I secure the main stem to the stake with a zip tie. All of the plants then go into a child's (large) or dog's (small) wading pool to use as a large saucer for watering from the bottom.

Thumb of 2014-01-29/Sorellina/0135f4

Here's a close-up of one of Duane's Peach Habanero plants. He grows all of his peppers this way. When he's grown them in-ground, he's had bad problems with cabbage butterfly larvae burying into the fruit. You can see the IKEA waste paper basket better in this photo.

Thumb of 2014-01-29/Sorellina/bb515b
Grazie a tutti,
Jan 29, 2014 4:12 AM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Popping in here quick, while power is stable for the moment and than I offline again.

It's freaking nightmare here. I feel like I am back in the Blizzard of '76. Haven't seen nor had to deal with these conditions since then. You Indiana folks know what I talking about. I hope the other Southern piggies are doing ok and hopefully they don't get the brunt of what we have here.

I am encased in a giant ice cube right now. Doors and windows are frozen solid. Can't even try and kick them open as may bust the glass or worse and have enough to deal with now. Whole trailer moaned and groaned as all that sleeting rain turned to a solid sheet of ice. All them unreal high winds we had, loosed the roof and walls up on this old trailer and I have places where water has gone down into walls and it frozen.

I have icesickles hanging down all around trailer and all outside from one window I can see out of.

We got another round of snow and sleet coming here in just a little bit. With wind it 7F outside right now. Will barely make it to 20's if I lucky. Gonna be this way tomorrow too. Than it unreal to 50's at night come Saturday and high in 70's. Nice warm temps for all next week.

Well, I finally discovered what the drip drip noise I heard was. Guess all this cold and freezing temps and pipes, froze the water line in back bathroom. Went to check to make sure pipes were still running and no ice forming in the sink again and as I walked near door, heard crunch crunch crunch.

The tank for the toilet must have cracked somehow with water freezing and un freezing. Bathroom, part hallway and part of son's bedroom carpet it soaked and frozen. Had that area shut off to conserve on heat. Always close that area off since son been gone. Got the water to it turned off, but not going to be able to deal with mess til this mess over. Wonder what other surprises are waiting to be discovered. Got electrity all shut off to those areas too. Worried about all that water back there and water seeping up walls and shorting something out.

I really worried about ILoveJesus. Hope she ok. I know her place not equipped for this mess either and saw on news where her area was supposed to get it too.

I still shooting for Friday to mail, but it may be Monday folks. I apologizing now, but it just can't be helped. I know you want your seeds and believe me, I want them too you too. I gotta take care of damages here first. Know the mem from church that fix everything for us women that can't do it, *Blush* won't will be able to get to me til sometime friday or saturday to come help. Have told them to take care of the seniors , homebound and handicapped folks first.

Oh well, nothing I can do about anything right. Am safe and warm and that more than a lot of folks right now. Got plenty of bottled water and coffee so I happy. Imagine we'll make world news again this morning. Hilarious!

Just so ya know, the seeds are safe and warm and are being cosseted. I protecting them like they my children. Very precious stuff. Big Grin Thumbs up

Ok, I out of here for good now til this mess over. Not gonna risk puter anymore. Getting worse outside.

To those in this mess, hope ya all are staying safe and warm and that everything ok at your places. Group hug Check in when ya can if you would please, just so somebody knows your ok. Gonna be more folks without power and frozen water. Again, need anything contact Patti if it serious, or ask a regular piggy here.

Jan 29, 2014 8:58 AM CST
Name: Julianna
Victoria, BC USDA Zone 8
Ella, stay safe and warm. You're always telling us that seeds can wait. It's hideous here, but it's Canada and it's nothing the city can't handle. I have a very good gardening friend in Mississippi whose idea of a winter coat is a windbreaker as thin as a piece of kleenex. He was out there shovelling snow with..a garden shovel. Floridians have flip flops and no idea what winter boots are (unless they're New York or Canadian transplants). Pipes are above ground. So yeah, lots of problems with the kind of weather we get up here.
Grazie a tutti,
Jan 29, 2014 11:08 AM CST
Name: Joseph
Cache Valley Great Basin
Landrace: locally-adapted diversity
Ella: Definitely stay safe and warm...

I often use a garden shovel for snow. One with a flat bottom. Takes a lot longer than a big wide shovel: But I can shovel all day with the narrow shovel. Wears me out to use wide shovels. It's currently snowing here. Likely to snow for 3 days. I'm glad that we almost never get ice storms. I'd rather have a blizzard,
Author of Mother Earth News Blog about Landrace Gardening: Lofthouse
[Last edited Jan 29, 2014 11:17 AM CST]
Quote | Post #1035276 (5)
Jan 29, 2014 11:41 AM CST
Name: greene
Savannah, Georgia, USA
We in Savannah have about 1/8 inch of ice coating everything. I sprinkled sand on the steps for safe footing before stepping out to walk the dog. Here are some photos, click to make larger. Everyone please stay safe and warm.
Thumb of 2014-01-29/greene/344f39
My neighbor's fence
Thumb of 2014-01-29/greene/916d38
The birdfeeder (empty)
Thumb of 2014-01-29/greene/979df6
Ice on the cabbage
Thumb of 2014-01-29/greene/c9f1fa
Tree weighted down with ice
Thumb of 2014-01-29/greene/0334ea
Truck bumper and grill
Thumb of 2014-01-29/greene/e4dcd8
Ice on oak branch
Thumb of 2014-01-29/greene/089b2d
Ice on the bean support fence
Jan 29, 2014 12:52 PM CST
Name: Julianna
Victoria, BC USDA Zone 8
Here's what it looked like on Christmas Eve after the big ice storm:

This is our big mulberry tree in the front yard. I prayed hard for this tree and fortunately, it did not lose branches. They bent down significantly with the weight of the ice, but there was enough elasticity that they were able to bend and then bounce back once the weather "warmed" up.

Thumb of 2014-01-29/Sorellina/eec688

This tree on our street was not so lucky. There were many trees on our small cul-de-sac like this one or worse. There were large branches and even large limbs that fell into the street, making driving treacherous. It was days before our street got plowed and weeks after that before the forestry guys came and removed the debris.

Thumb of 2014-01-29/Sorellina/db364f
Grazie a tutti,
Jan 29, 2014 1:04 PM CST
Name: aka GardenQuilts
Facebook, NGA
and the beloved Winston the pug
It is colder than usual here, but I am glad to see snow instead of "wintery mix".

I am picturing the poor southern piggies shoveling snow with garden shovels while wearing socks with their flip flops! I hope that your frozen pipes are easily and inexpensively fixed, Ella.

We are looking forward to our seeds, but don't take unnecessary risks driving them to the post office.

I got plastic waste baskets from the dollar store. I drilled holes at the bottom for drainage. they look a bit smaller than the ones you got at ikea. Mine are about a foot tall and 10" in diameter. i am tempted to try to get some early potted cherry tomatoes now.

Ok, I have a question for the piggies who start seeds indoors....which seeds are you starting first? I think I'll start with peppers, petunias and violas. All have been slow starters for me in the past.
Jan 29, 2014 3:12 PM CST
Name: Deborah
Orangeburg, SC Zone 8a
Don't Sweat the Small Stuff!
Things did not get as bad here, as was predicted. It was a fast moving storm. Here in midstate SC we got some ice, but mostly snow. The roads are clear presently, but wet and it's going to go down to 17 tonight. The roads will freeze. That will make driving treacherous in the morning, so most of the schools will remain closed. By Friday, it should be all over. Take care Ella and stay safe and warm. I hope you can get everything repaired soon. Don't worry about the seeds. If something happens to you who's going to sponsor the piggy swap? Don't risk going out in bad conditions. Group hug
Jan 29, 2014 4:57 PM CST
Name: Julianna
Victoria, BC USDA Zone 8
Ciao Andi-

Duane just started his Chinense and Baccatum peppers a few days ago and I'll be starting my Alliums this weekend. I plan to grow Cippolini and Mini Purplette onions as well as American Flag or Giant Musselburgh leeks. I'll also start some cat grass for the monsters. =^.^=
Grazie a tutti,
Jan 29, 2014 9:43 PM CST
Name: greene
Savannah, Georgia, USA
Last year I started gardening so late (due to the injury) that I'm probably gonna err by starting too early this year. Rolling on the floor laughing

I can't actually start anything until the temporary 'houseplants' go back outside; those plants are occupying all the horizontal surfaces and the grow lights. I will start by planting some lettuces and Asian greens, after that some tomatoes and hot peppers, then the pigeon peas and sesame. Oh, and the horned melon - I need a bunch of those.

(I am looking below for the green 'thumbs up' emoticon and it's missing!) Confused Oops, that's probably an ATP thing, right?

[Last edited Jan 29, 2014 9:44 PM CST]
Quote | Post #1035371 (11)
Jan 30, 2014 12:26 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Piggies posted this on Oinking thread and posting here for those who may have missed it.

Piggies!!!!!! Yep, it gonna be Monday before seeds go out. I am still in an icecube world. 14 Hours of sleet rain that turned to ice than got 3 and 1/2" of snow on top. Think that is a record for here.

Schools been closed for two days, mall and alot of stores all closed. Most roads you can't even travel on, if it has a bridge they got it barricaded. Just listening to news and another bad accident here. Somebody crashed on bridge not too far from me. Traffic backed up for miles and miles and miles on main road. Just hope the folks survived.

Still can't get my back door open. Still froze solid, and even tried kicking it. Both fronts were froze this morning worse than yesterday. Woke up to 7F this morning.

Love ya all to pieces and so ready for these seeds to be gone, but no way am I gonna try and get out in this mess. Monday it supposed to be in 60's and this mess melted away and will be safe to be out and about.

Joseph... I would use my garden shovel if I knew where it was, it buried out there in the yard somewhere. Have an idea where I left it. Out where I was digging Iris up, but not gonna bust a bun trying to find get to that area. Hilarious!

Snow shovels. Almost forgot what they look like. Don't even think they sell such a thing down here. Hilarious!

Andi.... Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing You are so right. No snow boots and ina few days no need for them. Instead of flip flops with socks its crocs with socks. That and sneakers or bedroom slippers.

Funny, ya see and hear on tv where in snow country they shut down highways and roads, but ya sure don't see them do it in south, but they did this year. Insurance companies gonna be busy for sure.

Colder than blazes out still but at least sun trying to peek out, but anything it melts it just gonna refreeze again to night.

MY frozen wall is tryign to unthaw, scared the daylights out of me, cuz smoke alarm on that wall started making mewing noises. Had to make sure it was just trying to work again and not something major.

If somebody gets a notice from their mailman that they have package to big to deliver that they need to come pick up, don;'t worry it just me inside mailing myself to a warm place. I'll even bring my own coffee along and bacon. Big Grin Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing

Glad to see a few piggies have checked in. Still worried about ILove Jesus. If anybody see hers posting on any site, holler out please.

Jan 30, 2014 12:47 PM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
Holy Smokes! Stay warm and Safe!
Jan 30, 2014 1:14 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
A friend said try and think positive about this mess. So I thought and thought and only good thing I could come up with is that the South bad for bugs. Tics, fleas, even worse the thousand and one No -see-ems that eat the snarff out of you.

With no cold chills past couple of years the pest population has gotten even worse. So many be this will be a good thing if the humans survive it. Hilarious! But you watch, come Monday when it nice and warm before we get a week of rain again, them nasty critters will still be hatching and flying around.

Knew with last round of arctic blast so many plants were lost. Things we plant down here are not designed for such cold. Now after this mess wonder if anything gonna be alive. Crying Thank goodness gardeners are diehard folks. Thumbs up

Jan 30, 2014 1:17 PM CST
Name: greene
Savannah, Georgia, USA
Starlight/Ella, regarding 'ilovejesus' - she posted on ATP on Jan 30 at 12:30 in the am so I guess she is okay.

Thanks for watching out for all your little piggies. Hurray!
Jan 30, 2014 1:26 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Thanks for letting me know Greene. That a big relief. Big Grin Not even sure if they even have any kind of warmer jackets in her area. Confused She alive so that good news. Thumbs up

Jan 30, 2014 2:48 PM CST
Name: Christine
Northeast Texas, Zone 7b
Take care Ella! I'm trying to picture you trying to kick your way out the frozen back door... I had to laugh at the thought Hilarious!

On that positive bug note, the good thing is that lots of those buggy bugs will hatch as soon as the weather warms up but then another arctic blast will be coming and wipe them out!! Hilarious!

I already noticed something like that happened here. We had cold temps and then when it warmed up one morning I went outside and there were spider webs everywhere! I mean they were on every plant inthe garden! Then went to let the chickens out and noticed out in the back pasture spider webs were covering everything there too. Yikes! But that night temps dropped back down to 20's and the next day, no sign of them... not sure what happened to the webs? Blinking I've read that some hatched spiders will make little parachute webs and fly away into the wind? Shrug!

It's sad when we lose our plants to the unusually low temps! I agree Good thing we don't give up!!
FAITH over fear!

[Last edited Jan 30, 2014 2:49 PM CST]
Quote | Post #1035525 (17)
Jan 30, 2014 3:16 PM CST
Name: Margaret
Delta KY
I'm A Charley's Girl For Sure
Can't remember if this works on trailer doors or not but on car doors and garage doors people spray water on them to melt the ice.
We are in a warmup spell right now then cold again. Lost one hive of bees to the cold. 4 hives left to protect until middle of next month.
Jan 30, 2014 3:58 PM CST
Name: greene
Savannah, Georgia, USA
For the frozen doors, can you call a neighbor who might come by with a heat gun (like they use in auto body work) to thaw the ice so you can escape? Most guys would jump at the change to fire up a noisy generator to rescue a damsel in distress.
Jan 30, 2014 4:42 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Greene... Don't know anybody who has such a thing off hand, but you just gave me a great idea. Hurray! Hurray! Wish I would have thought about it sooner. I have a big hand held hair dryer. Gonna get that puppy out, find the extension cord and melt me out. Doing the "wish I had a v8 ' head slap.

Did you see the news of the mess in Atlanta hwy? 2,000 folks had to strand their vehicles, deaths from this storm and lots of accidents. Already turning cold here again. Finally made it 20's and now will be in low teens again tonight if not single digits. Felt so bad for all them hundreds of kiddies that got stranded. You know it had to be scary for some of them to be more than 48 hours away from home.

MIndy.... Oh no!!!!!! How sad for you. So sorry you lost your bees. Crying It so hard to get colonies of bees to settle, produce and survive. Lots of work going into maintain hives. Hoping that you don't lose any more. Sad thing is not like you can bring them into the house either.

GGM had hives when we was growing up but have no idea what she did for them during winter in snow belt of OH. What about getting some metal trash cans or them what we call metal burn barrels down here. Would starting fire in them help. They will put off a lot of heat. Any smoke would keep the bees calm at least. Do the bees hibernate or go into some sort of domancy during winter or they still try and forge in such snow covered areas as yours?

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