I don't know if they have this everywhere, but I went to Aldies yesterday and found a good price on bottles. They are $1.99 here in Indianapolis full of non alcohol cider. I paid $2.69 each for empty bottles and stoppers at a local brew shop last year so this is cheaper plus you get the cider. I know the cider has artificial flavors in it but you could dump it out and still save money on bottles and stoppers. The label comes off easily with water.
Edit: I just noticed that the photo (taken with my phone) cut off the top. It does have the nylon stopper with the rubber gasket.
I missed this forum when I joined here. I usually just ask questions in other forums. My home located on the south side of Indianapolis. We've been here 15 years and the corn/soybean fields all around us turned into housing developments. I started flower gardens, then I morphed into wildlife habitats and now for the last couple of years I want to work on building a mini food forest. We live on a little over a half acre. I'm glad to see other people in the area interested in permaculture. I think my neighbors just think I'm weird.
Yes the honeysuckle does cover huge areas of road's edges here. I recognize it in bloom. I have been fighting a type of honeysuckle bush that seeded here from my neighbors yard for years now but it has broader leaves. I was hoping this was a viburnum or something I could use.
There was also a white berry bush with a single green seed in the center growing there too. It has broader leaves with pink stems near the berries and I am hoping it is a dogwood.
I cut these branches from 2 different bushes growing south facing between a housing addition and the street. There were several of each of the bushes along the road and the area is always full of birds. I found 4 small white seeds in the bright red berries and 3 small white seeds in the darker red berries. The quarter is for scale and the seeds are next to it. The bushes were about 5 feet high Occasionally the city cuts them back off the road but otherwise they are not cared for.
I restrained it through my metal coffee filter and it caught very little. Then I used the paper filter and it barely moved. After deciding it might evaporate faster than it would drip through I just let it settle and syphoned the clear part off the top.
My elderberry tincture has a lot of sediment on the bottom. There's a couple inches on the bottom of a quart mason jar. Should I just shake it up before using it or should I let it settle and syphon the clearer part off the top before I rebottle it?
These are the honeyberries I have for site 2. I don't know much about the different varieties so I don't know if any like the drier or wetter place.I just kept the varieties together as they are sold in the collections.
I have made so many mistakes planting in the wrong locations that I'm afraid to keep doing that.
I bought goji berries this year and potted them because they were so small and they are barely alive. I don't know what I did wrong there.
I still don't have them in the ground. I didn't know that the pollinator had less berries. I bought 2 two plant collections from Stark brothers so I have 4 varieties but I don't know which ones are the pollinators. I'm attaching pictures of where I am planning to put them. This is south of a brick house on site 1 and south west of the house on site 2.
How close can I plant honeyberry bushes? I have read to put them 6 feet apart in rows 12 feet on center, but I'm not planting a field. I have 4 very small plants and I have an area where I can plant all of them if I can have them about 4 feet apart.
My plants are only about 6 inches tall so would it be better to plant them in the garden now or keep them in pots to get bigger and put them out in the fall or next spring?
Thanks for the advice. I decided with my heavy clay soil I shouldn't risk it.
I think I will instead plant them in the back near a pecan tree and some persimmons with better drainage.
I just hope they survive the ducks!
I am now just trying to find a place to put them. I ordered them last winter because I wanted to under plant a large silver maple because they were shade tolerant. I read since then that they cannot compete with the maple's roots. I now have 2 dogwoods I was going to put on the northeast and northwest side of the tree and 2 hazelnuts that I was going to put on the southeast and southwest side of the tree. I have an elderberry growing right near the trunk and a gold yucca, catmint and a bearded iris growing there now. It has been heavily mulched for years but this year I expanded the mulch ring by another 5 feet. I really don't have anywhere else to put them that is in the shade and doesn't have some standing water. Here's a picture of maple tree area. This is before I expanded the mulched area and I took the picture during a heavy rain so I would remember exactly how far the water stands. I have buried drainpipes but the ditch gets so full from the water from the street and driveway that it has to go down before it comes out of my yard.
The dogwood I have now that struggles is planted close to the house and does not get standing water.
Can I plant a Cornelian-Cherry Dogwood in an area that can have 3-6 inches of standing water after a heavy rain?
The next day the area may have a inch of water left and by the third day after the rain the standing water is gone.
The soil is clay here.
I'm in central Indiana and we get heavy rains in early spring, then again around July. In August the area is pretty dry and I have to water August and September.
I've read that they want a moist soil and some places say moist well drained. I have a flowering dogwood in a higher, dryer area and it has always struggled.
Tthanks. I figured it was probably too late to inoculate the pile. I don't know how to tell if the pile had fungus or just mold in it.
I tried to look up plugging redbud but there seems to be a type of shiitake called redbud so sites are about plugging oak and maple.
I had 6 loads of mixed woodchips (from city tree trimming) dumped here in February. I have spread about 4 loads already. What is left is getting white coated inside the pile. The only mushrooms I ever see around here are stinkhorns and the tiny birds nests. Sometimes when I water in the summer I see a cloud of redish brown spores of some kind but I don't know what it is. I have a bluish green lichen on almost every tree.
Anyway I'd like to make a slurry of portabellas (like mentioned another thread here) and spray into the pile of woodchips.
Would it take hold at all or is it too late since the pile has been there for 2 and a half months?
I'd like t get some other varieties growing in what I already spread also. There is no shade yet because my trees haven't leafed out yet and I have very few conifers. What I have spread is about 5-8 inches thick and I will be adding the remaining pile during the coming months as this base layer packs down. Under my chips is a layer of mostly oak and maple leaves and below that is last year's much. I don't have access to cow manure but I do have ducks.
Also have redbud tree that broke from the heavy snows la winter and fell over about 3 weeks ago. Can I plug it with something edible or is it too old?
I haven't cut into logs yet and it's about 4- 6" diameter.
have 3 female pekin ducks. They have the run of my suburban yard and I buy them organic poultry feed. In the winters here they are eating the poultry feed 95% of the time. They don't seem to eat much table scraps before it freezes. I keep the feed outside of their house because they dump it a lot. I have read that ducks need the addition of nutritional yeast to the feed because it is formulated for chickens. Is this true? I have been adding a sprinkle on top but I don't know how much is needed, if any.
The ground is still frozen here and I have been giving them thawed out frozen peas as a treat. Will this throw off their clock for egg laying? I don't want tem laying too early because they hide the eggs and I find them frozen.
Also, one duck has a much lighter colored bill than the other 2, even when they are not laying. is this normal or is she lacking in some nutrient or vitamin?
When we moved here a neighbor told us not to plant our veggie garden until after the field was sprayed behind us because the roundup would kill It all. We put up a 6 foot privacy fence and I planted shrubs ad small trees that would get tall yet stay narrow against the fence and encircling the lot to help stop any wind drift. This helped slow weed seeds that blew in the wind also.
I had soil brought in to regraded the lot so no water would collect from adjacent properties. I use raised beds also. I did make the mistake early on of using treated lumber for some beds so I bough aluminum roof flashing and covered the treated wood.
I pestered the city until I finally got the ditch along the road dug out so that water no longer stands from off the road.
I keep a nice cover of wood chips on paths and throughout the gardens. I get a lot of mushrooms growing in it and I have read that they will detox soil.
The field behind us is now houses so I don't have those chemicals against my lot now but I will be watching this tread for other steps to take.
I watched one of his videos a couple years ago. I put the wood chips in my veggie raised beds in the fall and pulled it away to plantin the spring. I had millions of pill bugs and some other tiny little dark centipedes in it and they didn't do well. I did plant starts and not direct seeding. I planted my strawberries in year old wood chips They did ok but I had slugs. Maybe my attempts are not doing as well because I have raised beds.
He said 16 inches of chips in the orchard. If I go for that I would need 4 or 5 loads. I could go that thick right under the trees but I don't know ift my strawberries, comfrey, fennel and elderberry seeds would grow through 16 inches of fresh chips. I like to throw annual seeds like cosmos in the mulch for pollinators.
I guess if I put 16 inches of wood chips on the paths between my raised garden beds they would no longer be raised.
I was going around my yard several times yesterday shaking my fruit tree branches to drop the heavy snow so the branches wouldn't break. I lost the top branches of an apple tree last summer from the weight of the fruit and the snow was bending the remaining branches way down.
Does anyone else do that?
I wondered if I should have just let them go. Maybe I pruned them to be too open. We only get heavy wet snow once or twice a year.
Thanks everyone. I'll get the extra load and start spreading it as soon as I get it, weather permitting.
One time I got a load in the fall and since plants were going to sleep for the winter I went ahead and spread it about 6 inches deep as soon as I got it. It did have leaves in it but not as much as summer loads. The following year all of my ajuga and several ferns were gone. It probably wouldn't be that big of a deal if I did loose some of my ornamental plants but I have a lot of Daylilies and hostas I'd like to keep and in a pinch I think they are edible.
I transplanted strawberries in several places last year just as a groundcover. I am looking for ways to cut down the maintenance as much as possible. I didn't realize how much it was to keep up with until a couple years ago when I had surgery and couldn't work for a while. It took me a long time to catch back up and I aint gettin' any younger.
I can only get a load of mulch from the power company about every 3 years now. I don't know if it's because more people are doing it or just the price of gasoline but they will only accept you on the list if they are trimming trees in your area now. This summer I had to buy several yards of mulch and I can't afford to do that right so it went down thin and I started trying to start more groundcover plants.
I am on the list to get 2 or 3 loads of wood chips from the power company some time next month.
This will be almost all wood with very few leaves.
DO I still have to let it sit a while or can I start spreading it as soon as I get it? This will determine how many loads I get because 3 would probably spill over onto the neighbor's property so I would have to start moving it sooner.
Also, if I can spread it immediately, how deep can I put it over perennials and spring bulbs? I bought comfrey roots just last summer too so I don't want to smother them.
I have mulch down most places now but it is very broken down and my ducks turn it into the soil. Some areas I want to extend the mulched areas. I want to extend the area under my trees all the way to the drip lines.
I have used the wood chips from them before but it came during the growing season and I had to let it cook because so much was green leaves.
I got my ducks as hatchlings so I had to keep them inside until they feathered except for a couple warm days I let them dig in the soil for a few hours. It was warm out by the time they were feathered.
I gave my adult ducks nest boxes (on the floor) and they wouldn't use them. That might be because they were incubated and not raised by a mother at all. They do make nests in the duck house in the straw and out of mulch and leaves in the garden. I have to search for nests when they don't lay in the house. To make them feel it's safe to lay I have a couple fake eggs. The three of them will lay in one or 2 nests. When they decide to incubate, one duck will guard the nest during the day while the others run around and the guard gets out for a while in the evening. That is when I take the real eggs out. I have a privacy fence so for a while I just had a duck house and no pen so they could go in and out on their own. I had a problem with them laying the eggs in the pond. I read that I shouldn't let them out of a pen until after 8 AM. in a book. It worked. I rarely find an egg in the pond now.
I have read recently that you shouldn't give them straw for nesting material because aspergillus can grow in it. They have not had any respiratory problems but I will chang it to wood shavings inside the house after this bale is used.
I'm in zone 5 I give my 3 ducks 4 cups of organic crumbles every morning mixed with warm water. They eat it as soon as I pour it in a wide dish that is only 2 inches deep. I also pour warm water in a dish near the food. Then I open the gate to allow access to the small pond. I keep a pump going all winter so the water doesn't freeze solid. If the ice dams up I break a hole for them. At dusk I chase them back in the pen and give them more wet crumbles and a small bowl of water. They have a shelter in their pen.
I read online that poultry crumbles were made for chickens and ducks could get bumble feet from walking on their waste in the winter when it doesn't melt into the ground and sometimes it is so cold that I don't get their shelter cleaned out as often. They said to add nutritional yeast to the crumbles so I do that now, although mine have never had any foot infections in the past.
One duck is still laying so I also add crushed eggshell since the oyster shell I have in their pen is frozen in a sold piece. I have also read that they should get wheat berries in the winter so I will add some wheat germ to their food occasionally.
I don't know if I'm doing everything right but they seem to be healthy and happy for the last 3 years.
I have only 3 ducks and they eat everything I've tried to plant near the pond. This past summer they even pulled tomato plants that overhung the short garden fence and ate them. I didn't get egg production until I cut them back so I think it stopped them from laying. I started with the preformed garden pond but later sunk it and built it bigger with a nice beach area. I made shelves behind the pond to plant in and 2 stream areas for water filtering plants but they can jump up there and ate everything I try to start there. I have a Laguana skimmer and I have to clean the pads weekly, mostly from the feathers clogging it. I have a dirty water pump that I pump the bottom out 3 or 4 time spring to fall. Winter is when I have to keep a close eye on it so the pump doesn't burn out if the filters clog or water level drops. I'll be watching this thread for suggestions too. I'd like to rig up a aquaponics system using my dirty pond water.
What surprises me is that the apples are still clinging to the tree even though they are turning brown and decaying.
I would have to get up there and pull them off the tree to remove them. I tried shaking the branches and they are on tight. That is what I find so unusual this year as they always fell off before. I have never harvested much from this tree because the rust always caused it to have tiny deformed apples. Spraying it with neem oil would help the leaves but not so much for the apples. This is the first year that I got very many apples that were big enough to eat.
I had left the few that fell on the ground near it. I thought their composting there would nourish the tree. We got snow yesterday and so I can't rake the area now but I will when it melts. I originally planted the yard primarily for wildlife. What I could pick for myself was just a bonus.
Thank you John. I am glad to hear it is so easily remedied. I used neem oil early in the season but stopped after spraying the nematodes because I was afraid that it would harm them dripping into the soil. I wondered about the diatom earth after it dried. That makes sense to me. I just used neem oil and a little dish soap. Sometimes I added powder to the mix.
Should I leave the fruit hanging in the tree all winter? I used to have a peach tree that got some black on the fruit and was told to be sure the mummy fruits were off the tree for the winter. With the peach it was only about a dozen fruit that held on. With this apple at least half of the fruit is still hanging.
Also I stopped eating the fruit when the soot grew on it. Is it toxic or just ugly? I couldn't just wipe it off but I brought a few in and put them in water with a little bleach and it came off. I don't know what is more harmfully to eat.
I have what I think is a granny smith apple tree located in a slight berm, about 2 feet higher than the surrounding area. It was a small tree when we moved in in a bad spot so I moved it here about 8 years ago. My next door neighbor has huge cedar trees and so it usually gets cedar-apple rust. I use some organic sprays in the spring but I don't usually get much useful fruit from this tree.
This year the apples were good sized but since I have a Golden Delicious tree that ripened sooner I had enough to can and eat so I didn't bother picking this tree and just let the wildlife have most of it. I just pulled one off occasionally to eat when I was outside working. This year though, unlike other years, the apples got sooty looking just about the time most would be ripe, I'm guessing it's a mold. A lot of the apples did not drop from the tree and we have had a few frosts. I have been using the lower area behind it to compost tall grasses, chopped leaves and small branches for the last 4 or 5 years. I was so happy that the rust didn't deform all the apples and then they got moldy instead.
Should I get up there and try and knock down the fruit? What should I do for it?
I sprayed 3 kinds of beneficial nematodes around it this spring to help fight worms and ticks.
Thanks. You both have given me things to think about. I do have a few woodland plants under other trees like jack in the pulpit, ginger and trilliums. tree just under I was afraid the maple would just choke them out so I never tried them there, I did have a few daffodils there a few years ago but they stopped coming up. I have a thick layer of mulch about 5 feet out around the trunk. I also throw the fallen limbs back under it. I dump my kitchen scraps there too sometimes.
I was hoping I could plant some type of fruiting trees or bushes maybe 10-15 feet from the trunk but still under the canopy. I was concerned that the tree's roots would still choke out new trees. I have a couple sassafras trees just under the canopy edge and they are growing very slowly. From what I've read they are fast growing trees.
It's really good to hear that someone else around here is interested in this type of landscape. I live about 7 or 8 miles from Southeastway park. I used to set up a table for Indiana Wildlife Federation at Bugfest. I haven't done that for a couple years now though.