An intro to Garden Secrets
Took a 4 mile walk along the Erie Canal this morning. When I got back I checked out The Weather Channel for an update on the freezing rain that was coming. The temp at the time was 24 with 14 degree wind chill. During the walk the Sun was out and coming through behind high clouds, and it didn't feel that nippy. I also noticed the 7 day outlook was amazing for this part of the remainder of January, as now we're past the 1/2 point. It looks like our nighttime lows in CNY are going to be what we normally get for daytime highs.
I hope when March 15th arrives we get normal weather when everyone will be eager to get going with the upcoming Spring season. When you think about it now, it's really not that far away is it? Between the Winter Sowing Posts, the Super Bowl, the Winter Olympics, and the Daytona 500 we'll be looking for Redwings within just a few days that follow those posts and events. In the meantime when we all can get away from our spring like "yardwork" because of these unusual temps maybe we could begin a "Garden Secrets" thread where I'm sure someone would benefit. At least it will help while away the hours in the next five or six weeks of possible "cabin fever", if your prone to it?
Some of my reasoning for a thread is I'm really new to a lot of gardening technique's mainly because of the soil I was able to plant in for over 35 years. It was a till, plant, weed and water when needed and watch things grow type of garden. My how I took things for granted. When I began gardening in this clay stuff I knew I had to grow on raised beds that I put together because the clay sits on a flood plain. It's been nothing less than a learning experience.
My first year raised bed vegetables were a disaster. I only had 2" of good soil. I had to pull all of my peppers. The cucumbers never came close to taking hold after TWO well established seedling starts. My tomatoes that the old neighborhood envied were a bummer and on top of that even before I began my new garden I lost all of my beautiful Dahlia tubers during the winter because I had to leave them in our garage. I had a cold room and built an indoor greenhouse at our other home for the tubers that I saved. All in all my first year here I almost came close to giving up, but fortunately I began to pay a little more attention to the Garden Web Forum. If it wasn't for the NYS Forum, and the Dahlia and Organic Forum's there's no doubt I probably would have planted shrubbery and ornamental trees, then kicked back and became a slave to TV watching. Not boasting I learned well from the GW. From composting to Lasagna Gardening.
For a Garden Secret starter I'd like to point out something I learned on the Clematis Forum. And if you would before I begin, you have to understand I didn't start "flower gardening" until 5 or 6 years ago, and that was before I knew of the Garden Web Forum. So much of what I did learn early on was from trial and error at the beginning. Five years ago I purchased my first Clematis. After the 3rd year the plant was thriving so well I had people asking if they could take cuttings. It was a Jackomani and was from my understanding not only popular but easy to grow, according to a co-worker.
I followed his instructions as to fertilization and bur-lapping with leaves in the Fall and it thrived. My wife to this day is upset we didn't dig it up and bring it here when we moved.
Well never the less even though I was a seasoned Clematis grower with great experience it would be a snap to start all over. That's what I thought. We decided on 3 plants in different areas. The first year was mediocre. The second year, well, I knew I had a soil problem but maybe with a little TLC we could get the results we were looking for. So we thought. By June '05 the leaves were yellowing to the point I thought we were going to lose the plants. Then Garden Web to the rescue.
I posted "How Do you Stop Yellowing?" to the Clematis Forum on Jun 15, 05.....................
The Garden Secret???????????????????????????????????????
Now I can only hope somebody Upstate didn't know this Garden Secret? Well let me tell you, I was off to buy 3lbs one for each plant. Coming from a 3rd party produce family I knew the ripest banana was the one that was spotted or dark skinned. So we ate the bananas after they were spotted and then waited for the peels to darken. Then I took scissors and cut the peels into small pieces and tilled them into the ground around the plants. Well let me tell you again, it was just a matter of a day or two that I could see the results. If I had only known sooner as with my first year plants. I'm not expecting my 3rd year plants to be as glorious as the one we left behind but I'm sure they're going to be better than the last two.
I know it's easy to do searches and so on to get the info you need, I.E. the Clematis Forum but this is more an idea for Upstate'er's. I'm sure I can find a Garden Secret on Dahlias on the Dahlia Forum, but would it come from someone in Texas who more than likely leaves their tubers in the ground all year and can't possibly have the same problem I or you have?
Plus do you really believe Ground Hog Day is Feb 2nd? It might in PA but I know for Syracuse, Pulaski and all points in between and around our GH Day is Mar 2nd.So if it's okay I'll call this thread "An intro to Upstate Garden Secrets" and then follow with another called "Upstate Garden Secrets" on eggshells and I don't mean to take away from other Forum's and please respond to this thread if you'd like or think it's okay?