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Author Topic: October 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere  (Read 2668 times)

Akke

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Re: October 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2022, 07:11:27 PM »
A correction, I do use a little bit of soap and water on aphids if rinsing them off with water isn’t possible. Slugs don’t seem to like containers, we don’t have poisonous spiders and beating the ants to the seedpods can be done. I use some metal netting to keep away rats/mice and breeding ducks. But who knows what other pests will show up later.

Today Crocus lycius opened up, a new one and even more lovely than I expected.

Akke & Spot
Mostly bulbs. Gardening in containers and enjoying public green.
Northern part of The Netherlands, a bit above sealevel, zone 8a normally, average precipitation 875 mm.
Lots to discover.

Robert

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Re: October 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2022, 07:38:16 PM »


Like Akke, I [we] have been very busy. Providing winter protection and planting leguminous cover crops is currently occupying most of my schedule.  [Birds, mine]

This photograph was taken yesterday, 27 October, at our Placerville property.



For me, well-grown crops are a sight of beauty.



A spring crop of multi-colored lettuces.



Even other salad greens are beautiful.



This is part of our pest control program.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Robert

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Re: October 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2022, 07:43:23 PM »


I have been farming and gardening for over 50 years. I have never sprayed poisons to control pests.  Even organic and natural pesticides and insect deterrents have adverse consequences to other creatures, and the entire ecology and food chain—for example, Bt to kill pest caterpillars also kills the caterpillars of desired species such as butterflies. Birds, lizards, frogs, parasitic wasps, and other beneficial insects are encouraged to thrive as part of a holistic, self-managing system. Occasionally we get some minor insect damage. Our philosophy is the feed to soil with farm generated compost, leguminous green-manure crops, and the occasional application of rock powders. Healthy soil grows healthy crops and other plants.



My wife working the compost piles.



We also control pests by breeding our own plants that are well adapted to our gardens. Pictured is a seed crop of Ethiopian Two-rowed Barley. I use the 20% rule when selecting seed for saving.



I use the same 20% rule with our Ethiopian Blue-tinge Wheat.



All sorts of autumn blooming bulbs are looking good in our garden. This Sternbergia is one example.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Jeffnz

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Re: October 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #18 on: October 30, 2022, 02:45:29 AM »
Robert
I would be interested to know if you have aphids and if so how have you developed systems to control this ever  present pest?

Robert

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Re: October 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #19 on: October 31, 2022, 06:07:12 PM »
Hello Jeff

I think that you ask a very important question. The long answer to your question would involve writing a detailed essay of my integrated growing practices. The basic growing principles I follow are very similar to those expressed by Eliot Coleman in his books “The New Organic Grower”, and "The Winter Harvest Handbook”. The books are about small-scale agriculture; however I have found that most of the principles discussed in the books can be applied to ornamental plants. Also, his information applies specifically to his Maine farm. Adjustments are often necessary in different climatic situations or when using different cultural practices, such as container growing. Maybe these books are available at a public library in your area? Lately, I have been giving thought to how best to share my gardening experience and practices with others. Maybe I should write a book about such things? I am not sure this is the right time.

Anyway, the short answer to your question is, yes I sometimes have small populations of aphids in our gardens. For example, I currently have some pepper plants that have a few aphids on them. It is the end of their season, and encroaching shade, poor air circulation, cool temperatures, and declining day length stress the plants. Aphids or no aphids, the plants were scheduled to come out of the ground within the next few days and the area replanted with autumn-winter crops. At no time during the growing season did they have aphids, and I have never had aphids on peppers during their growing season in over 50 years of gardening farming. Needless to say I am not concerned about the situation. Basically I keep all my plants healthy, including ornamental species, by using a preventative, “plant positive” approach. I never spray synthetic or “natural” pesticides. Sometimes I have sprayed aphids with water, but this is very rarely necessary. I have founded that healthy, unstressed plants do not get pests. Consistently, I have found that plants grown in healthy soil are far more resistant to environmental stresses and pests than plants grown in unhealthy, unbalanced, depleted soil. If one has access to Eliot Coleman’s books they can read about his preventative, “plant positive” approach to farming. The general ideas also work with ornamental species.

Without having to write a great deal, I hope this has answered your question.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Jeffnz

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Re: October 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #20 on: October 31, 2022, 07:30:08 PM »
Hi Robert
Thx for your answer to my question.
With my hellebores, aphid infestation develops on the underside of the leaves which makes spray ting with contact insecticides difficult. That is why a systemic approach makes for an easier and complete control.
I now use Neem Oil, a natural insecticide, as the main control for aphids, the aphids appear as the hellebore flowers set seed and within a short time can become very prolific. Neem Oil is relatively successful but to achieve full wetting on the underside of each leaf is a challenge. Any misses and the populations continue to explode. Due to space my plants are grown close together which of course does lead to a quick hop over from an infected plant. Due to space limitations plant spacing cannot be increased.
Neem Oil works well on roses where the aphids seem to be on the flower buds which can easily be sprayed. I am trialling using cat mint, Nepeta, as an aphid deterrent. This has been reported as being successful so currently have many cuttings which hopefully will root and then transplanted.

MarcR

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Re: October 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #21 on: November 02, 2022, 01:47:28 PM »
(Attachment Link)

Like Akke, I [we] have been very busy. Providing winter protection and planting leguminous cover crops is currently occupying most of my schedule.  [Birds, mine]

This photograph was taken yesterday, 27 October, at our Placerville property.

Robert,

How effective are the hoop tunnels? and what fabric do you us?

Marc
Marc Rosenblum

Falls City, OR USA

I am in USDA zone 8b where temperatures almost never fall below 15F -9.4C.  Rainfall 50" 110 cm + but none  June-September.  We seldom get snow; but when it comes we get 30" overnight. Soil is sandy loam with a lot of humus. 
Oregon- where Dallas is NNW of Phoenix

 


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