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Click on a thumbnail picture below to see the full size version. 74 Entries.
Saturday, January 2 View Page
A new year...and right now it feels so cold and empty...
 
Thursday, January 14 View Page
Today I opened the last AG from my 2020 season, the 471.8 (uow) Wagler 20, aka 'Mondenkind' (1542 Urena x 2261 Schmit). Excellent seed count, and the fruit on the pollinator plant was a shiny orange one, too :)
 
Tuesday, February 2 View Page
Today...
 
Sunday, February 7 View Page
Today weīve had some snow...some kind of snow which had a beautiful pastel apricot color. The pic doesnīt do it justice. In real life this color was so much more stunning. The color came from some Sahara sand (or dust) which had been blown that far and finally gave a nice mix with the snow flakes. Upon melting it was interesting to see what a large fraction of Sahara desert must have moved to Germany. The rather coarse dust you can see on the bottom right side settles nicely. The pic on the top right side shows the dust which was fine enough to get through a coffee filter (and needed a couple of hours to settle).
 
Saturday, February 13 View Page
Some frosty weather and some frosty suggestions for decoration, one simply needs some thread of wool, some muffin cups, water and some food color, and soon you can put some decoration outside, like here hanging from our bird feeding station.
 
Wednesday, February 17 View Page
For the 2021 growing season I will need heaps of Good Luck. Well, luck is the only thing that will help, because I cannot throw any wisdom into the game any longer. As of today, the last bit(e) of wisdom is history. Well, maybe I actually could throw it into the game (into the patch), but it certainly wouldnīt help.
 
Wednesday, February 24 View Page
Two days ago weather forecast predicted pretty warm and sunny days until tomorrow. Thus, I used this wonderful weather to check out whatīs going on in my compost box (and to mix it and give it some fresh air), I removed the whole load of compost material from the box and piled it up next to it. Today I filled it back into the box. Itīs full of hungry worms. Now the material is mixed nicely, has some fresh air to it and a decent moisture level, and I covered it with some clear plastic (for the sun may warm it up a bit more during the next days). For another month Iīll leave it alone and then letīs see how hungry the worms have been.
 
Friday, March 5 View Page
Today, a sunny afternoon, and the addiction of "must-do-some-digginī-in-the-patch", I better call it an 'a-dig-tion'. I decided to turn some soil (and before I did that, I sprinkled some chicken- and pigeon manure on that area), because this will be the part of my patch which will be covered by the AG vines not before mid June, and therefore Iīll be growing some Phacelia flowers there in the interim (and Iīll be sowing them very soon).
 
Friday, March 5 View Page
Another pic taken today, this one showing some parts of my plans for 2021. The orange squares will become the planting sites (which will receive some compost and other goodies around end of March and will be covered with clear plastic until mid April to let the sun warm up the soil). On each site Iīll be growing two AG plants back to back (red arrows) and back-up plants next to them (blue arrows), planning to let them grow with the back-ups side by side until the first male and female flowers show up (want to use the best plant with the best shape and color of the females and want to make sure I wonīt be growing male sterile plants). The other areas marked with a green grid will host some Phacelia flowers, too (still got some digging to do the next couple of days).
 
Monday, March 8 View Page
Show me a garden thatīs bursting into life... :)
 
Monday, March 8 View Page
Looks like the time for workouts in the patch has just begun. Finished the Phacelia flower area today.
 
Saturday, March 13 View Page
Phacelia flowers sown today...
 
Monday, March 15 View Page
Patch today. The part of the patch at the red arrow was the least productive part last year. Therefore, I will grow some potatoes there this year. Today I turned the soil of that strip, added two wheelbarrows full of chicken manure and raked it in. Still some grains and stuff in this manure, perhaps some birds will eat it, perhaps it will sprout...anyway, Iīll treat that strip with a rake every week, so the birds can find more of the seeds and the procedure will disturb the seedlings (if some sprouted). Around end of May this plot should be fine for the potatoes to go in.
 
Monday, March 15 View Page
...should have read "end of April" in the previous post.
 
Wednesday, March 17 View Page
Workout today: I broadforked the meadow next to my pumpkin patch...just for fun ;) In fact, I did that on purpose, broadforked a 2 ft wide strip around the patch because I will grow corn around the pumpkin patch (wind protection) and want to convince the corn to grow some more roots toward the meadow rather than into the pumpkin patch. Will do some watering/fertilizing of the corn in May/June on that strip of grassland only, an additional attempt at convincing it to push the roots that way. Hint for the German growers interested in broadforks ("Bodenbelüftungsgabel"): This broadfork is a custom made piece by Oliver Langheim ("Kürbisolli").
 
Monday, March 22 View Page
Workout today: Around the the two plant sites I mowed the cover crop, then the spots received some goodies (coco coir, alfalfa pellets), and on one site I already added two wheelbarrows full of leaf compost and turned the soil (in a rather shallow manner). Tomorrow (perhaps) I will add some more goodies on top (another layer of leaf compost, alfalfa pellets, horn chips), and the final layer will be the top soil (including the cover crop stuff) from the surrounding area...which is still green. Thereafter, the 2nd site will be treated the same way.
 
Tuesday, March 23 View Page
As you can see, thereīs some progress. Another 3 hours of work went into the patch today. Canīt wait to continue tomorrow. :)
 
Thursday, March 25 View Page
A sunny day today (has it been), good for some hours of work in the pumpkin patch. And now...? Happy :) ...because patch prep is finished for the next couple of days (or weeks)... Sad :( ...because all the lush green is gone. Looks like I need to be patient for a while.
 
Saturday, March 27 View Page
As you can see, we started some Easter grass today :)
 
Monday, March 29 View Page
A splendid day for some more work in the patch :) Today I watered the plant mounds and covered them with clear plastic (yes, itīs clear plastic, even though it looks white, but thatīs just the impression because of the water droplets on the inside).
 
Monday, March 29 View Page
A search pic for those of you who canīt wait to see some fresh green :) Found the first Phacelia seedlings today, can you see them, too?
 
Monday, March 29 View Page
...and so we continue with the kidsī patch. They did some prep work as well (measuring the planting site, spreading some alfalfa pellets, digging some soil), and I helped them, of course (bringing two wheelbarrows full of compost, finalizing the shape of the plant mound and covering the spot with clear plastic).
 
Thursday, April 1 View Page
Aaah...soon it will be Easter weekend :)
 
Thursday, April 8 View Page
8. April, seed starting day :) Basically today I made the final decision as to what will be my final line-up for this year: My 710* Wagler 20 squash and the 927* Jutras 18 squash should serve the green side of life. The 210 Hochstetler 20 (uow) and 2139.4 Skonager 20 will be in charge of putting some (golden?) shining lights into the pumpkin patch.
 
Sunday, April 11 View Page
All so empty?...Look closely! :)
 
Monday, April 12 View Page
AG seedling #1 is up :) Itīs a 2139.4 Skonager seedling.
 
Sunday, April 18 View Page
A series of seedlings (from left to right you see pairs of 2139.4 Skonager, 210 Hochstetler and 927* Jutras). For the 710* Wagler series I had to start another bunch of seeds, the initial set decided to rot rather than producing seedlings (it was a matter of soil temperature, the pots with the 710* seeds did not fit into the incubator during the first couple of days after seed starting). Currently, itīs too cold and too dark and cloudy, and the development of the seedlings is at least two or three days behind. In the morning I take this box into the greenhouse (slightly more light during those cloudy days, but cold even at daytime) and in the afternoon I take them back into the house near a window (less light, but still temperatures which keep the roots alive). Would have loved to transplant them into the patch this weekend, but soil is too cold. Need to wait for another three or four days.
 
Friday, April 23 View Page
A sunny day for me...a dark day for the vole ;)
 
Saturday, April 24 View Page
A) 2139 Skonager, B) 927* Jutras, C) 210 Hochstetler, D) 710* Wagler. Today I transplanted the seedlings into buckets, I canīt set them into the patch, weather is still too cold, too little sunshine, and soil is too cold, too. Need to keep them inside the greenhouse for (at least) another week. The 710* seedlings are 6 days younger than the other seedlings, but their development is merely 2 days behind the othersī. Itīs fascinating (actually horrifying) to see how the older seedlings had been slowed down because of lack of sunlight during the first days of life.
 
Thursday, April 29 View Page
A shocking view: Itīs end of April and no AGs have been planted into the patch yet. This year weīve had an unusually cold and dark month of April, and the seedlings still need to enjoy their (s)pots in the greenhouse for another four days (or something like that).
 
Thursday, April 29 View Page
A) 2139 Skonager, B) 927* Jutras, C) 210 Hochstetler, D) 710* Wagler.
 
Thursday, April 29 View Page
A Steinman line: “…Will you make me some magic with your own two hands? Can you build an emerald city with these grains of sand? Can you give me something I can take home?...“ RIP Jim. May angels guide you to an emerald city in Neverland.
 
Saturday, May 1 View Page
Art? Science? Fun? Dreams? ...a bit of everything, this seems to be the best mix...also in pumpkin growing.
 
Sunday, May 2 View Page
A) 2139 Skonager, B) 927* Jutras, C) 210 Hochstetler, D) 710* Wagler. Lack of sunlight the last couple of days, the leaves kept on growing but color-wise they do not make the best impression.
 
Tuesday, May 4 View Page
A) 2139 Skonager, B) 927* Jutras, C) 210 Hochstetler, D) 710* Wagler. Thereīs been lack of sunlight the last two days, too. Growth of the leaves has slowed down, but color-wise they are doing better than two days ago. (Have given them a foliar feed with some goodies, perhaps it has helped.)
 
Thursday, May 6 View Page
A) 2139 Skonager, B) 927* Jutras, C) 210 Hochstetler, D) 710* Wagler. Can you hear them scream "We wanna get outta here!!!"? In about two days they will see patch soil (hopefully!).
 
Thursday, May 6 View Page
As soon as I started treating the soil with a hoe (oh yes, had to do some weeding today, even before the AG babies have been planted out, isn't it crazy) I opened a voles tunnel. A couple of minutes later the trap was installed (where the red arrow points).
 
Saturday, May 8 View Page
A) 2139 Skonager, B) 927* Jutras, C) 210 Hochstetler, D) 710* Wagler. Today was the day...when they finally were allowed to enter the patch.
 
Saturday, May 8 View Page
A slight impression of todayīs progress: Thereīs about 3 hours between the two pics.
 
Saturday, May 8 View Page
...and sure, the kidsī plants were allowed to hit patch soil, too.
 
Monday, May 10 View Page
A squirrel :) (...sitting inside the bird feeder this morning.)
 
Wednesday, May 12 View Page
A 2139 Skonager plant (front) and a 210 Hochstetler plant (back), have just taken a pic from inside one of my four tunnels (as a representative example), didnīt want to spend too much time in the rain today.
 
Thursday, May 13 View Page
Although some rain has been falling (and still keeps on falling), I have decided to go outside and take some pics of the baby plants. Here you can see their positions on the patch. The asterisked site of each pair of plants denotes the favorite site (where I have planted the obviously or seemingly stronger/better plant). Will be interesting to see if in one or some cases the backup plant (the one on the site without asterisk) will finally turn out to be the better plant, which will be kept.
 
Thursday, May 13 View Page
...and so here we go now, the first impression of my baby plants in their cosy tents.
 
Sunday, May 16 View Page
Any sunshine from behind? Looks like. :)
 
Wednesday, May 19 View Page
:)
 
Saturday, May 29 View Page
A stunning view...would have loved to have this view a week earlier. May has been pretty cold and cloudy, today was the day when I finally allowed the plants to leave their tents (fingers crossed that June will become warm and sunny). As you can see, thereīs a new plant in the patch. Had to replace the 2139 Skonager backup plant by a new backup (404 uow Wagler 20). Next pic will tell you why I had to replace the backup by a backup...
 
Saturday, May 29 View Page
A sucker!!! This was supposed to become a decent AG plant, but it grew so bushy as if it wanted to become a zucchini plant. Therefore, I didnīt want to keep this bunch full of salad as a backup plant.
 
Saturday, May 29 View Page
As you can see, the kidsī squash plants were allowed out of their tent, too :)
 
Sunday, May 30 View Page
A sad view this morning... Frost Damage :( It happened to the squash plants only, which are growing on the most exposed part of the patch. Never thought we would get any frosty temperatures last night. Fortunately, only some of the leaves show serious damage. The vine tips should still be fine.
 
Tuesday, June 1 View Page
A scenic view of the patch today (with a close-up of the less satisfying parts...the frost damaged squash plants).
 
Sunday, June 6 View Page
A spontaneous decision Iīve made this weekend: Made a plant site for water melons (red arrow), because Iīve had some spare plants in pots, which are looking fine and needed to see soil soon. This site was meant to be filled by vines of the 2139 Skonager plant, but this plant (in the orange boundaries) is far away from this spot and it turned out to be a slow grower, it has the shortest main vine so far, and its back-up (in the blue circle, which is much closer) does not look like a competitive option. Also, weīve had some rain last night, which was good for the garden in general, but the Phacelias, which are just about to start flowering, collapsed under the weight of water which crashed down at once.
 
Tuesday, June 8 View Page
:)
 
Monday, July 26 View Page
Any sulfur at hand? The kidsī squash had developed a large brown spot on the blossom nub, didnīt look good, but hopefully spotted early enough to save the fruit. In the past I had done that kind of operation a couple of times (with success)...removal of the bad tissue, painting the wound with a dispersion of sulfur in ethanol, finally dusting the wound with some additional sulfur. Fingers crossed!
 
Tuesday, July 27 View Page
A seriously sad day today :( Today I pulled two of my four AG plants...1000 sqft of empty patch now and six big carts full of salad carried to the compost. The now empty spot used to host the 2193 Skonager and 210 Hochstetler plants. The latter was a very aggresive plant, had an arm thick main vine, big leaves, aborted the first fruit after two weeks and refused to set any other decent fruit. Also, it used to be a very sun sensitive plant (from the very beginning). Not sure if the fruity problems were genetically set or if anything else (Fusarium maybe?) made a key contribution. As to Fusarium, today I discovered a foaming stump on that plant. The other plant was looking healthy, no signs of Fusarium yet (cross sections of vines looked nice, roots looked nice, too), but this plant was a slow grower from the very beginning, and the first fruit stopped growing after 3 weeks, and the next fruit on the main vine (6 nodes further down the vine) had a deformation of the blossom nub, which could very well cause troubles (like BES or rot) in a couple of weeks. Thus, I decided to pull both plants, which allows me to give that part of the patch some extra treatment. Will sow some mustard soon, so it can be mowed and tilled and do some fumigation before I need to sow the winter cover crop (rye).
 
Wednesday, July 28 View Page
All sown, compressed and watered. Now Iīm keeping my fingers crossed this mustard will grow nicely and be ready for the mower around 1st week of September.
 
Thursday, July 29 View Page
A squash :) Itīs the kidsī plant (and fruit), 710* Wagler x 927* Jutras. The plant is a real picture book plant, the patch was filled very soon and some secondaries are aggressively growing across the lawn. Iīm jealous...sort of.
 
Sunday, August 1 View Page
A seedling!!! :) Today I found that the mustard seed start sprouting, and weather forecast looks like some moderate rain during the next coupld of days...good combination.
 
Thursday, August 26 View Page
:)
 
Thursday, August 26 View Page
A shot of the kidsī 710* plant today, looks like capable of putting some more lbs onto this fruit :)
 
Saturday, August 28 View Page
Alles Senf...
 
Wednesday, September 1 View Page
After some cold, cloudy, rainy, dark days, sunshine has returned...and the first couple of mustard flowers have opened today :) My dear mustard, next week your time will have come! ;)
 
Wednesday, September 8 View Page
All squashies today (same order as in the pic from 26th August), still shiny, still green, still growing :)
 
Wednesday, September 8 View Page
A shashlik skewer instrument for measuring pumpkin growth :) At their current size it is hard to measure CC, and therefore I simply placed some shashlik skewers (2 cm separation from fruit and from one another) in front of the fruit (punched them into the styrofoam base). When the fruit hits a new stick it must have grown 2 cm into this direction (perhaps 2cm into the other direction as well, and thus 4 cm in diameter, which means ca. 12.5 cm in CC). Basically, it is just for confirming that the fruit is still growing rather than me trying to find another widest CC during the next measurement in case of some odd shaped ribs.
 
Wednesday, September 15 View Page
Ageing/Senescence: Here we can see my 710* Wagler and 927* Jutras plants, the color of the foliage of the former (in the central parts of the plant) clearly tells me that this plantīs fruit wants to attend the earlier weigh-off, the other one may enjoy the patch for another couple of days.
 
Thursday, September 16 View Page
All set :) Removed the vines of my 710* plant and weeds from under the canopy. (The remaining leaves/vines belong to the 927* plant.) In a couple of hours this greenie can be loaded onto the trailer.
 
Thursday, September 16 View Page
As soon as the kids were back home from school, they also cleared the vines and weeds, getting their squash ready for loading.
 
Thursday, September 16 View Page
A shocking moment (sort of) when seeing this at the kidsī squash, mousey housey, but itīs all good, mousey merely dug out some styrofoam, bottom of the fruit was still sound.
 
Saturday, September 18 View Page
A spade, an empty patch and lots of endurance....thatīs a combination for a good workout for a couple of days. Decided to do a double-spade treatment of my soil this year. What does that mean? Thereīs about 1 ft of good topsoil, but underneath thereīs only sandy loam, which is running dry pretty fast and doesnīt retain any nutrients and water. Hence, Iīm aiming at getting another 1/2 ft of subsoil into reach where I can add some amendments (some bentonite, compost and other goodies). Therefore (as shown in the pic) I dug out a trench...1 spade deep, a 2nd spade deep. Then I started digging another trench to the left...1 spade deep (i.e., green box and arrow: filling the topsoil into the former trench)...2nd spade deep (i.e., red box and arrow: layering the subsoil onto the topsoil-filled former trench). Will have to repeat this procedure for maybe 110 times, it may take about 18 hours for the whole patch to get turned this way.
 
Monday, September 20 View Page
:)
 
Thursday, September 30 View Page
:) Fruit of the 927* Jutras plant...off to the last journey.
 
Saturday, October 2 View Page
A sunny last patch view of this green beauty, which has officially become the 1007.5* Wagler 2021 (927.5* Jutras x 710* Wagler) now. Itīs a new PB for me :)
 
Saturday, October 9 View Page
In addition to my new PB (the 1007.5*) the same plant grew a little sucker on a secondary (well, it was a deliberate pollination, 927.5* Jutras x self, genetics fruit). Now it is the 300* (uow) Wagler 21 (according to my bathroom scales). OTT was 228 inches, looks like it went some % heavy.
 
Saturday, December 4 View Page
A star, a snowflake, and some elements which try to make this FP be a bit more Christmassy. (Btw, this is my 97.9 Wagler 21.)
 

 

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