Journal Of A Long Strange Trip
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  • Sweet Peas Emerge

    Posted on May 3rd, 2009 Dirk No comments
    2009 - Sweet Peas Emerge

    2009 - Sweet Peas Emerge

    My sweet peas are starting to emerge from the ground.  The peas have taken a little longer than I had expected, but it also has been a little cold lately as well.  My family loves sweet peas and snow peas.  We call them garden candy.  Many times the peas don’t even make it into the kitchen.  They are just eaten right there in the garden.  Grazing!

    We all went out into the garden this evening to plant some onion sets that Tina had ordered.  I prepped two beds for the onions.  The soil seemed to be just a little too dense for onions, so I tilled in some potting mix and some of the wood chips and chicken litter from the chicken coop.  After that addition the soil was much lighter.

    I also side dressed the peas with the chicken litter.  After we have gone inside to cleanup and fix dinner, it started to rain.  I think that we picked up something like 0.34 inches of rain today.  That will help get the onions watered in.

    I need to pick up some more 2x6s to build some new garden beds.  I also need to till and mulch the garden paths.

    Dirk

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  • Hop Yard

    Posted on May 3rd, 2009 Dirk No comments
    Hop Yard April 27, 2009

    Hop Yard April 27, 2009

    Last year I was listening to a pod cast called Home Brewing Perspectives.  The pod cast is hosted by Douglas and his friend “Mike The Hop Guy”.  They were talking about growing hops.  I figured that I should grow some hops as well.  We had installed a trellis on the south side of the house so we could grow some type of climbing plant to shade the house.  Hops fit this bill pretty well.  I remembered that my friend, Ron, in Idaho had some hops at his place.  I called Ron and asked if I could get some rhizome cuttings from him.  He told me that I was welcome to come to his place and see what we could find.  When I got there we were able to find some Chinnook rhizome clumps that the pigs hadn’t completely rooted out.  He gave me the clump and I headed home to get my hop yard tilled and prepped for the hops.  This was already pretty late for starting hops.  I think that it was about mid May.  As luck would have it, the weather took a turn for the worse and it began to rain before I had finished clearing my hop yard.  For nearly two weeks it rained enough to keep the ground too wet to work.  By the time I finally got my hops into the ground it was June.  Only four of the seven rhizome cuttings I planted survived.  I’m not sure how much help I had from the chickens.  They may have damaged some of the more tender rhizomes.

    This year I dug some wild hop rhizomes from the south end of the valley.  I planted five new hop mounds to my existing four.  I almost can’t believe how much growth I have on my hops from last year.  A week ago, several of the plants were about three feet high.  So as I planted the new rhizomes I strung twine for the other plants and started the bines on their way up.

    I am pretty excited to see how things work this year.

    Dirk

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