Okra

Okra is coming to maturity so fast we can hardly keep up with it. Looks
like we will run out of space in both freezers rapidly. Wash it, cut off
the bottom, slice into rounds, put on cookie sheets, freeze for an hour
at 0 degrees. Take it out, put it in vacuum bags, seal, put a date on
it, back in the freezer. Looks like a lot of deep fried okra and/or gumbo.
Tomatoes are about played out due to the heat, the little marble toms
are okay as they're big bushes are shading the fruit. The plum and other
tomatoes aren't that lucky.
We're hitting 90+ degrees daily now. Weather folk are saying we have
really good chances for rain for the next ten days but we can only hope.
Nothing else going on garden wise but we can hope for a decent winter
garden some day not to far away. No figs, one pear, maybe get some
kumquat come fall. Got to pull up the Old Maids flowers from around the
pear tree. Finally got through to dear wife that pretty flowers growing
around my fruit trees means no goodies to grow the fruit coming up from
the roots.
Local free newspaper throws one for each house on our area but no one
picks them up. We starting picking them all up and then run them through
the paper shredder and then into the composter. At least they aren't a
eyesore anymore and the shredding helps them ferment and turn into
decent compost when all the kitchen stuff goes in and the dead plants in
the garden.
Hoping this fall that we will be able to take all the homemade "dirt" in
the raised beds and mix in a lot more composted cow manure plus all the
stuff from the composter. I intend to rent a small cement mixer and use
that to mix up all the goodies and then back into the beds. Beats trying
to rock a tarp back and forth with our old arms and shoulders to get a
good mix. Need to add another bale of peat moss too.
George
Reply to
George Shirley
Cement mixer ! Geez , I've been wearing myself out turning that compost pile with a shovel . I bought a HF mixer to mix concrete for the cellar slab and mortar for the block walls , now it just sits awaiting the next masonry-type project . Not any more !
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Snag
Reply to
Terry Coombs
If you weren't so far away Snag I would try to borrow it. I've actually found one on line that someone wants to sell cheap. Guy says the electric plug is blown but I can fix that easily. Going over to look at it tomorrow at mid-day. If the guy is smart he washed it out after every use, if he isn't he might as well throw it in the dump. You ever try to beat the cement out of one of those things with a hammer?
Reply to
George Shirley
No , I rinsed mine out after using it . There is a thin skim of mortar/concrete around the lip . but not enough to have to beat it out . If you were near I'd be happy to lend it .
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Snag
Reply to
Terry Coombs
...
just put it down on top and it will get mixed in when you plant new things in and if your worms are working...
i think many people are really wrapped up in gadgets and techniques more than common sense. for some reason they forget that nature has figured out how to rot and reuse stuff that just falls on the surface as is.
if you're worried about bugs and smells it does help to bury some things under several inches of soil to keep the flies off and to make it available to the worms.
i turn my worm buckets out into the gardens once a year. otherwise i only disturb the soil in them to put new things in that need to be buried. in rotation through the buckets it means i may do something once or twice a month in each bucket (depending upon how many food scraps we have).
keep it simple. :)
songbird
Reply to
songbird
No worms here, in five years I've found two worms and I suspect they came in pots dear wife had bought. Remember, we have two inches of sand on top of several feet of gumbo clay.
Years ago we had good dirt on the old home place and lots of earth worms and good bacteria. I have four generations of "gadgets" and other tools that have been passed down to me. One of my great granddads was a blacksmith and his tools were made by him, including the wood drills, etc. I oil them once a year and put them back into the home made tool box from more than a hundred years ago. All of those go to my middle grandson when I'm gone.
We both grew up in the country with critters of all sorts and all the manure went into the compost heap and got turned frequently. On this 6500 square feet of property with driveway, sidewalks, and a 1960 square foot house we barely can grown anything. At least all the fence line is growing something pretty or edible and we have three fruit trees. Every other house has a live oak in the front yard. Our front yard tree is a pear.
I tried growing worms a couple of years ago, they all died, probably due to the heat here.
Looks like we're going to get more rain in dribbles but it's still free garden water.
George
Reply to
George Shirley
earthworms will live in clay, it's the composting worms (red wrigglers and others) that might not do well with the heat.
and i bet none of them were made of plastic?
another reason why our current society is more full of trash. a lot of plastics just crumble too easily when they age.
we have one fence that is being held down by wild grapes. it's a major project but i sure would like to get those out of there. the grape vines shade out the grasses and those grasses hold the soil in place along that ditch. when the water runs hard it is going to move over to scour the bare soil (easiest path) instead of through the area that has grass growing in the center. it'll be a messy job too if i get in there and move some of that grass back from the center to along the sides again. none of it makes sense if i can't get the shading shrubs and vines removed and keep them out of there. the trees i've kept after so they've not had a chance to get too big that i have no way to remove them. one of them i took down with a hammer and chisel.
likely if they got much over 90F and/or didn't have enough water.
i have had the buckets in here do ok with some spells of 90+F and not running the AC, but i do make sure they have plenty of water in them.
i hope we get some this evening or tomorrow. the forecast has been calling for some rains, but as usual many storms go either south or north of us.
songbird
Reply to
songbird
In all my life all I've ever found in solid gumbo clay are fire ants. Crawfish will go through a small layer of clay but never through five feet of the stuff. I've tried to get earthworms to work here but they will only stay in the raised beds. Fire ants will drill down in clay but I never see any on the top of the soil with a few exceptions.
The builders of this community came in, checked the level of land and hauled in many tons of Houston gumbo clay, red, white, yellow, and a dun color. We live on what used to be an ancient ocean probably a million years ago and not to far from the Gulf of Mexico. On top of the clay they put in a few inches of sand, laid down San Augustine grass with a little bit of dirt on the roots and called it a lawn.
Every year I use a hand held seed spreader filed with ground gypsum and go other the front and back yards and the edges along the side of the house. Gypsum, over a period of time, will start turning gumbo clay into a little dirt. We do that here and we did that in Corpus Christi, TX back in the early eighties, where we had the same problem. Learned that from the folks who had been living there for years.
George
Reply to
George Shirley

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