Joshua Bertram

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since Dec 25, 2016
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trees bike greening the desert
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Recent posts by Joshua Bertram

Pearl Sutton wrote: Joshua Bertram: I can't plant right now, we will be in full winter here in the next 2 weeks and they would just die. Can we try it in spring?




Yeah, sounds good.  Just noticed you wrote this in the spring!  :)

Of course you'll have to post again, or pm me to remind me.
4 days ago
I've got a couple, and they are the most invasive plants in my yard.  They're in clay that has had rain water once in the last six months, I don't know how they survive.  They aren't looking as full this year because they literally don't get watered , but I probably have some suckers I could dig up today (we're going to have our first freeze here tomorrow so I've got to do a lot out in the yard anyway).  I'll post some pictures later today if I can dig some up worthy of shipping, and if you're interested I'd be happy to send them your way.  The biggest problem will be if I can dig through the dry clay to get them.  Normally I torch the runners.


4 days ago
Perfect timing on the picture just now.  First time I've seen a roadrunner in my yard, but they're not uncommon around here.

Two Wile E. Coyotes behind the gate with Acme rocket skates on to chase him down!
5 days ago

Burl Smith wrote:

Joshua Bertram wrote:

I'm going to experiment growing with cheesecloth as the growing media and a little bit of nutrient solution.  No soil/perlite/coir etc.  Super sanitary if it works.
.



After telling Dean his pots may be too small, I'll be interested in your results.



I thought I came up with the idea a few months ago, but I googled it and this video came up.  It worked for her.  https://youtu.be/fNq7Rm9QVWk  Cheese cloth is kind of expensive, so coco-coir mats might be better for not much difference in price, although I have not price compared them.

and if you want to go really cheap some things will even grow on paper towels.  https://youtu.be/730wqH_9mJw  (same yt channel I originally linked).

I would think that old white 100% cotton sheets/shirts/fabric would work as well.  As long as they haven't been bleached recently?  I'm just guessing, it seems logical they would.
6 days ago
I listen to this podcast all the time.  Some far out there ideas on some stuff, but it really gets me thinking.

Starting at about 47:20 going on for about twenty minutes or so.  https://www.earthancients.com/?portfolio=jared-murphy-its-not-aliens-its-us-part-2

Nano technology
Communication
Power transmission
Carbon dioxide filter
Heavy metals filter
Nutrient dense soil
Foundation support

"genius dirt"

and if that's interesting later on in the podcast they go on to speak of ancient megalithic building be made from geo-polymers.  
1 week ago
Jay, no, I wouldn't say they look the same.  The store bought goji leaves are long and narrow, and the Chinense (or what I believe is the Chinense variety) is much wider and about the same length.   Also, the store bought gojis are growing much taller (over eight feet), but less dense.  The Chinense seem to be much fuller, but more squatty (about four to five feet tall).

I only had one small berry on the store bought right now, but earlier in the year they were about twice the size of what's in the picture.  
Vs. the hundreds of ripe berries on the Chinense (more bitter).

The Chinense are much more happy here.  They seem to produce 100x more berries, and look healthier in general.

1 week ago
I have two types.  One is Chinense? and it's very bitter.  Tons of tiny berries, and I normally just let the birds eat them.  They stay green through winter here in zone 8a, but suffer through the summer, and often defoliate in July/August.

I have another variety I grew from seed from the grocery store bulk bin.  Those are sweeter (nothing special) about twice the size of the others (still pretty small), and don't do nearly as well as the Chinense.   They go dormant in winter, and look terrible in July/August.

I'm not impressed with either.

1 week ago
I second what Jen said.  I live in the desert with a lot of rock landscaping, and clay soil under it.  No way I can reasonably pull a weed from the rocks along with getting its long tap root out of the hard clay soil here.

I've been using a flame thrower weeder for the last ten years or so.  The idea isn't to burn the weed to a black crisp, only to transition the green leaves to a darker green color.  Something about it being better to put the plant/weed into shock rather than kill the top only.  It's more likely the plant will put its energy into repairing itself, which should end up being a lost cause.  I find that I have to go through and flame the same area twice within a week or so.  That way any plants that are making a comeback get hit again and are pretty much goners.  
Again, like Jen said, my main weed problem is in the spring.  I'm pretty much weed free (unless already established/mature) by June.  Nothing is going to grow from seed in the summer unless we get consistent monsoon rain, and that hasn't happened for the last three years here.

I also like the idea of cooking the weed seeds with the torch.  If I do see a weed in flower, I make sure to bbq the flower/seed.

The bad part.  The first time I used the flame thrower, I set a windmill palm on fire (holy smokes the dry stringy trunk lit up like a rag soaked in gasoline after getting a little close to it).  It was in my urban front yard, rock all around it, and I had the hose nearby that was already pressurized so I was able to put it out almost immediately.  I did have a black trunked palm tree for a year, lol.  It was fine, and only a few of the lower fronds suffered heat damage.  

I also made the mistake of using it near my wood chip mulch once.  Got a little too close to the woodchips, must have not noticed some chips got heated enough to smolder, fifteen minutes later I see smoke coming from behind my garden shed, and sure enough a few square feet of wood chip mulch was burning steadily.  I lost a newly planted female pistachio, and almost lost my shed.  
I do not use the flame thrower anywhere near my wood chips anymore.  It's just too hot and dry here.

1 week ago
I just bought twelve 20w led 48" long single lights off amazon yesterday (prime deal on them $5 per light which is pretty reasonable).  I've been using the lights in my garage for the last year and am super impressed with them.  Here's the link for the six pack set.   https://www.amazon.com/Barrina-Integrated-Fixture-Utility-Electric/dp/B01HBT3BVM/ref=sr_1_5?dchild=1&keywords=barrina&qid=1602802070&s=hi&sr=1-5
I have two food safe racks from costco that I'll hang them on.

I mention them because I watch a yt channel called "on the grow".   They're the mad scientists of microgeens.  They've done experiments with all types of lights, growing media, varieties of greens, etc.  Pretty much everything anyone could want to know.  Here's a video of their basics to growing.  https://youtu.be/D3vnBEvYDZo  Good for simple home grows, or more advanced.  Easy going couple that are very informative.
Anyway, they use the same lights, and have had great results with them.
Yes, I would guess removing two of the four lights from your existing lights would be fine.  With microgreens, you want them to "stretch" for the light.  More light is going to keep them shorter which is not ideal for harvesting.

Trueleaf is the place to get seeds if you don't already have a source.

I've only grown sunflower, and pea shoots so far, but it was super simple.

I'm going to experiment growing with cheesecloth as the growing media and a little bit of nutrient solution.  No soil/perlite/coir etc.  Super sanitary if it works.

Good luck, it's not hard to do at all.
2 weeks ago