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Early Feb 2012 Update

February 22, 2012 Leave a comment

New raised bed finished,perfect functional shape for us, really maximized the growing space.

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Seedlings

My soil/seedling tray got too wet, and caught a  “dampening off”  fungus, a common problem of seed starting.  It “ate” seeds – literally. It “attacked” the plants and really stressed them out, a few died. Gardening is a lot about learning from mistakes, and there’s a lot of mistakes to be made. To combat the problem, I transplanted all potential surviving seedlings to bigger pots, cut back on watering,  washed out the seedling tray. I bought some new sterilized soil, and then it was time to plant 3 week (before last frost) crops – watermelon, cucumber, cantaloupe, squash and zucchini. I added some bell peppers and a row of royal hillbilly tomatoes too. The second round was great, and many round 1 plants survived they might be behind a week or so from the stress though. Planted English Peas (Sweet Pea) Green Arrow in new raised bed  1/22. Used bean inoculant(a soil bacteria) as recommended to assist in the Bean plant’s nitrogen fixing feature, with this bacteria it’s supposed to grow a lot better. For my own notes – (3) 3 inchfurrows, separated by 8 inches on both sides. They are looking great now. Planted Potatoes – 2 Fingerling Varieties – Rose Finn Apple and Kipfel. Pulled up the old Braeburn apple tree and planted the new Gala Apple tree 1/22.We’re hoping it does better than the last apple tree.

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My Peas in the new bed started out looking nice and neat.

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Early March

Now to the mushrooms- I have 40 Shiitake logs or so, one or two have succumb to other competing fungus.  We want to expand that just a little to make sure we continue to have steady harvests.  I took down an oak and ordered a warm strain of shiitake(named Night Velvet) to help cover the hot summer months. I have 2 strains, West Wind (a wide range strain), and a unknown strain. Ordered a thimble spawn sheet with 600 plugs that have a styrofoam lining on top to make it as easy as drill a hole, and insert the spawn plug no hammer required. image I made up 4 blue oytser bags of straw last week, and they are “pinning” meaning the mushrooms are “here”. image

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