Jonathan Baldwerm

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since Jun 06, 2019
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cat fungi trees
Coos Bay, Oregon
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Recent posts by Jonathan Baldwerm

Thanks for the advise! I'll aim for May then.  I live in a weird part of Oregon where we almost never get frost (and the ground has never frozen in the 10 years I've been here), but while other parts of Oregon are freezing we have regular 33 degree nights, which I'm guessing still would be detrimental to a young avocado tree.  May's definitely when soils finally start warming up.

I'll plan on setting up the cold frame next year as well, as every couple years we get a few nights in the upper 20s.
4 months ago
I've been thinking about planting a Mexicola Avocado, and will probably pick up a 2 foot tall one from a local nursery sometime this year.  I was curious if anyone had any pointers on the best time of year to plant them, or if there's an ideal soil temp to plant them at?  I've mostly planted temperate trees in the past, and often plant those in the fall, but I'm guessing an avocado would do better planted sometime in the spring?
4 months ago
I get pretty good results out of a plastic bin my mother-in-law gave us.  It doesn't get as good of a thermophylic period as my pallet bin does, but it does get around 120 degrees for a couple weeks before cooling down.  It also gets way better conposting worm action than my hotter bins, maybe because of the lesser heating. This is after 1 1/2 months of composting, not there yet but coming along.
4 months ago
I'd second the field peas.  I have the Austrian Winter pea variety, and I have no problem getting them to sprout right now.  They don't grow very fast with the short days, but they still look healthy.  My climate's pretty similar to yours, just a bit cooler.  Highs are 40s to 50s this time of year, nights usually hover around freezing temp.
I agree with what Tyler said.  I'm in a much cooler region, and also had black soldier flies show up in my compost piles, but mine disappeared months ago, toward the end of September.  You are lucky Florida allows them to be active outdoors so much of the year, I think they were only around for 3-4 months here.
5 months ago
I'd agree that it's a bit of a longshot you'll get inoculation, but my wife has been doing the same thing at our house with the past due ones we find.  I'm in the same general area as you, and around here they primarily partner with Douglas Fir.  Stamets lists a few successful inoculations in his books, but apparently they require very specific conditions to succeed.  Still, if ya got extra mushrooms that got too old, why not make a slurry and give it a shot?
5 months ago
I'd agree with everyone else on the homeowner sized chippers.  I have one of the electric ones that chips 1 inch or smaller sized branches (it claims to chip 1.5 inch, but 1 inch is pushing it) and find it adequate for my needs.  I only own a quarter acre though, and mainly use it for chipping up my prunings, laurel trimmings, etc, and also my neighbor's trimmings.  I live in a county where all yard waste gets burned if you take it to the transfer center, so I feel better that I can chip it all up and recycle it into the ground.  I've used mine pretty heavily, but like Mike said, it still hasn't produced anywhere near what you'd get from a tree service even with many days of use, maybe 2-3 small pickup loads worth of chips.  It does chip up branches a bit finer than what you'd generally get from a gas powered or tree service chipper, which is great for me because they decompose so quickly, but some people actually want those chips sticking around longer.

All the 100-200 dollar electric chippers seem to be almost the same in design, I think the main thing is finding a company with a good return policy.  Mine's broken twice now in 9 months of use, but they've replaced it free of charge both times.  The third one I got stopped working after an hour of use, but I was able to fix it myself pretty quickly (power wire rattled loose inside the unit.)  The returns are kind of a hassle because it generally takes 3 weeks to a month for a new one.  Reading the reviews on other company's models (mine is a Sunjoe) I saw the same issues were pretty universal throughout the electric chipper world, but some companies are real arses about taking defective models back.
5 months ago
Regarding the trees you want to take out, oysters are supposed to work really well on sweet gum.  Not sure about popcorn trees, but oysters eat a wide variety of hardwoods, so they might work well on that as well.  I have some oysters eating cherry laurel stumps right now.  If you do decide to try oysters, make sure to look at their fruiting temperatures, as some strains work better in warm or cold climates.
6 months ago
I made several hundred dollars digging weed bulbs out of my yard and selling them on eBay a couple years ago.  When I moved in, crocosmia and Spanish bluebells had taken over several beds and I didn't want them.  Both are incredibly prolific, so I sold them in lots of 25, 50, and 100 bulbs.  I undercut the other sellers of these plants a bit on price because I was just trying to get rid of them.  I would guess someone who was actually trying to turn it into a business could find some attractive but quickly reproducing bulbs and make a little extra income on it.  Just one bed 2 feet by 12 feet of crocosmia can produce thousands, possibly 10s of thousands of corms over a few years.

I also got rid of some naked lady bulbs via craigslist and eBay this year.  Same thing, an attempt to keep them from taking over.  They are more challenging to ship though.
6 months ago
I haven't bought a copy myself yet, but I did recommend it to the library and they sent me an e-mail yesterday saying they have purchased a copy, so it will now be part of the Coos-Curry County library system.  Hopefully it gets a lot of reads.
6 months ago