Henry Jabel

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since Apr 16, 2013
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bee bike forest garden fungi hugelkultur purity trees urban woodworking
Worcestershire, England
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Recent posts by Henry Jabel

Along with all the other techniques already mentioned, adding a fine silica sand has helped my heavy clay soil immensely. As sand is really not an expensive input it is really worth doing in my opinion.
18 hours ago
Most of the substitutes are low in sugar but very sweet tasting which sort of defeats the point of eating it if you are a hummingbird.

Suggestion for plants for hummingbirds its best to look at what grows in the wetter parts of Chile and Argentina if you are in the pacific northwest. Here in England we can grow nearly a lot of the plants of the Aruacaria and Patagonia regions so I think you will be fine with your more similar hotter climate.

For example the nation flower of Chile, the Copihue: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lapageria would be a good suggestion as it provides an edible fruit, a beautiful flower and is becoming increasingly threatened in its natural habitat.

18 hours ago
Looks like it could be a photinia to me. Photinias are evergreen and usually have red leaves on the new growth hence thier common name 'red robin'.
2 days ago
Both articles talk about it being used as a mulch, I usually put it on the compost heap and it doesnt make any difference once its composted. So something is breaking down the residual caffeine.
1 week ago
Yes, it was thankfully not too well established and I might have set it back a bit by weeding it too well! So I am just waiting for it to come back first.

I also weeded a lot of ground elder and bindweed from other customers houses. The ground elder has been in a container without light for over 6-8 months now and its still trying to grow! Again that is edible and medicinal and clearly a strong plant so I think that could also make for an interesting spray/feed.
After discovering knotweed in one of my customers garden I did some research on this much maligned plant to discover it is potentially rather good for you due to its high resveratrol content. Infact all the reveratrol suppliments seem to be made from this and not grape vines like the marketing would suggest.

As I had been making other weed sprays and typically they were usually medicinal too. I searched for the potential of this plant too and eventually found the following:

Knotweed extract "induces phytoalexins which infer resistance to powdery mildew and other diseases such as Botrytis". In other words, the extract helps the crop or ornamental plant fight the mold rather than attacking the mold directly. If the extract were made with organic alcohol, the fungicide should be considered organic.

I would champion the use of the words 'synthetic or sythesised fertiliser' rather than 'chemical fertiliser'. I read and hear the 'everything is made of chemicals' response quite a lot and it usually leads to the conclusion that there is no difference.
1 week ago
Where I used to live it seemed to establish itself on the field that would get cut for hay or mulched a lot better than in the wooded area. As this was persumably due to the ants I would try to encourage them to do the hard work for you as they never went away in all the years I was there.
1 month ago
Doesnt even seem like a very good offer, I would want atleast 60% if was going to get scammed.
I wanted to try growing it years ago but couldn't find the seed easily. The biggest dissapointment for me was it is an annual when most lupins are perrenial. So maybe its different enough not to cross pollinate too?  The alkaloids are meant to be bitter so its unlikely you might poison yourself without realising!
3 months ago