Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Planting Mexican White Masa Corn & Walking Stick Cactus

I got my seed from Clare in Benson , and planted it in peat pots & small seed packs, 76 of them, with 1 seed each.

Built a planter in my mother's garden downtown, moving the " 3 Amigos " down there soon.

The 3 Amigos

The pear tree across the alley, we just might make a crop this year.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

An Anniversary , and the 1st Year's Experiment's Results

My seed corn from last season. Some of this corn was grown on Buddy Holly Ave. in downtown Lubbock , Texas.

Last March , on the 11th . I launched this site with the following post :

Last night March 9, 2009 I offered to buy Hopi Blue Corn seeds for anyone who would plant them , regardless of their location. My email is posted on the right, just under the corn grinders.
Drop me an email, with your screen name , and mailing address, and I'll send you a package of:

Zea mays Tender Annual Hopi Blue Dent is an ancient flint corn, a traditional staple of the Hopi Indians of Northern Arizona. The 5' bushy plants have 8"—10" ears each. The ears have smooth blue kernels which dry to royal blue which can be eaten fresh, dried for cornmeal, or used for decorative purposes.

Last fall, when the crop came in I was asked for the results of the season. At the time it was too soon to tell really. I posted some answers, but not the results of the experiment.
Here are the results of Colorado Bob's Hopi Blue Experiment :
There is Big Medicine in Blue Corn.

I have changed the policy tonight ( It's under the email on the right).

You get 24 seeds , not 15 .

Monday, March 22, 2010

Swapping Seeds

I got a note from Clare at Benson, Ariz. She offered to swap seeds. How could I refuse ???
This is White Mexican Masa, pretty cool stuff.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

" Mark the Oak "

3 seasons ago, thanks to Don Calwell , and the Tornadoes, I was lucky enough to plant a little garden on Buddy Holly Ave., along the south wall of the Cactus Theater. I named it after my mother , Peggy Chapman. Last year, when Lubbock lost Joe Don Davidson, I had just bought a fig tree for the garden, when I learned the news of Joe Don. So there is a fig there for him. In the fall , when Lubbock lost Mark, I couldn't plant anything till spring. This is an oak I've been nursing along since last summer. Tornado Larry helped me dig a hole for it the other day, to replace our poor old elm someday. So look for " Mark the Oak " west of "Joe Don the Fig".

My Quince is flowering. It's the best thing about spring.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Salad Bars Become Salad Machines

Growing in tubes seemed like the best way to pot a lot of plants, cheaply & cleanly. My first one of these was 10 feet of wheat grass. ( On the right )

But only last fall, when I planted a salad mix in 4 different smaller test tubes, did the following occur to me .........
A very simple machine, that grows salad greens, and herbs for 2 - 4 people. Less than 6 feet long, fits on a small apt. balcony .

The only moving part is a ball valve.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Buiding of My Pit Greenhouse

I had a conversation with an old friend from Salida the other day. It prompted me to get into my pictures. I came across these, the construction of my green house back in 1985. The backyard, was already paved with bricks, stones, etc. I dug a 3 foot deep trench where the flower bed was next to the house, and lined it with steel rib panel. The concrete stem wall is 2 feet high, and sits 4 feet from the edge of the pit.

When I re-built this in 2007, I added a solar heat collector at the base of the stem wall.
After I got it skinned , I cut the door into the back porch.

About the same time, I added a thermal solar collector to the roof of the porch. The box is full of beer cans , that act as baffles and surface area. Cool air was circulated with a fan in the bottom, and warm air was blown into a thermal water battery buried in the floor. I used 300 1 gallon plastic milk jugs to store the water.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Tortoise Awake Feb. 27th

Tortoise emerges from hibernation. It is earlier than last year, but he is eating well and up everyday to sun. He has moved from his hibernation spot to his usual summertime place. He was very light when I picked him up to examine him. He has already put on weight. I blame his early awakening on El
Nino as the bees, coyotes and birds are also off of their typical behavior. I have a hibernating turtle, but she usually comes out of hibernation in April.