Storms And A Few Questions For The Panel

I inherited some sort of storm preparedness gene from my dad, or maybe my maternal grandfather. Today marks the beginning of a big storm for our area (maybe snow!) and so this afternoon found me outside in its harbinger: a light sprinkle, pulling tarps over things, sweeping soil off our steep driveway into the beds (so we don't lose any topsoil into the road) & muttering to myself all the garden queries I have compiled of late.
Raincloud to Me: "Catch!"
I have no idea how to do this, other than to stand large vessels out of doors in the rain. But what about mosquito larvae? Should I add a few drops of chlorine to the water to kill anything wanting to take up residence? Will chlorinated water be suitable for plants? Is our water chlorinated already, so this is a non-issue?
And then there is the cold frame. Of what should its floor consist? Gravel? Wood chips? Right now it is gravely, weedy soil and a half-smashed volunteer foxglove. Seedlings in trays are sitting above the ground on cinder blocks, which I imagine create some very nice hidey-holes for slugs and the like. So the blocks should probably go.
Potential Yuck
Also, can I plant vegetables over my septic tank? Should I just stay away from root crops?
A New Lawn, Please!
What is a drought & shade tolerant variety of grass for our latest hair-brained landscaping scheme?
Dew Point
Just what exactly is the dew point? How is it measured? (Acorn cups and fairy bells?)

And when, o when, will the spring come?


kauaiamy8 said...

Hey, I'm going to see if Kyle knows anything about the septic tank vegetable planting question. He does work in waste-water management so he might know. I love the illustration you included below - I know it's Christopher Robin but from that angle it's also totally a beautiful young G.
- Amy

rosa said...

hey sis!
Thank you! I would appreciate any words of wisdom! (Much needed...)

Esther Montgomery said...

A thin film of edible oil on top of the water should stop mosquito larvae. I think it stops them breathing - not sure - but it works.

I have a pile of old fridge and cooker shelves which I stand on bricks etc when I need to lift tender plants out of the way of slugs. It doesn't stop them completely but if they chose the wrong rung to slide along - they have to start again. (The pots mustn't touch or they can go from one to another that way.)

We are lucky with our horitcultural society. It sells grass seed already measured into paper bags with handwritten notices on them like 'tough' and 'drought tolerant'.

Hope you are well and not rushed off too many of your feet.


rosa said...

Hi Esther!
Yes, I have felt rather rushed off feet. For about 22 months-which is the age of my youngest! Hmmmm....
How nice that you provide an obstacle course for your slugs- they must be big and strong!
I will try the edible oil thing. Our water availability contrast in winter and summer could not be more marked!
I miss blogging! I have so much to say actually, here on rosa, but at the end of the day when I get a chance, I am so full of words and tired of brain that I can't seem to get anything out.
Like a mental constipation?

Lucy said...

Thought I'd call by and say 'hello' . . . a sort of 'Happy Spring' greeting.


Esther Montgomery said...


(This is me shouting to you!)



Read Your Way Through the Garden: Choice Tomes From Garden Literature

  • A Book of Salvias by Betsy Clebsch
  • Botany for Gardeners by Brian Capon
  • Making Bentwood Trellises by Jim Long
  • RHS Encyclopedia of Plants & Flowers
  • Rose Primer: An Organic Approach to Rose Selection & Care by Orin Martin
  • Start With the Soil by Grace Gershuny
  • Sunset Western Garden Book
  • Sunset Western Landscaping Book
  • The Book of Garden Secrets by Patent & Bilderback
  • The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Botany
  • the Gardener's Table: A Guide to Natural Vegetable Growing and Cooking by Richard Merrill & Joe Ortiz
  • The Gardener's Year by Karel Capek
  • The Hutchinson Dictionary of Plant Names: Common & Botanical
  • We Made A Garden by Margaret Fish

lotsa latin: rosa's botanical & etymological ruminations

  • vespertinus: flowers in the evening
  • vernalis:spring
  • veni vidi nates calcalvi: we came, we saw, we kicked butt. This was printed on a T shirt I bought at Abbot's Thrift many years ago. It encircled the NEA symbol. I wish I knew why.
  • superciliaris: shaped like an eyebrow ex: sturnella superciliaris, the White-browed Blackbird
  • rosa-sinensis: species of Hibiscus: Hibiscus rosa-sinensis. Lit. Rosa of China, so named by British plant hunters.
  • placentiformis: shaped like a cake ex: discocactus placentiformis
  • nudiflorus: flowers before leaves show ex: flowering quince, magnolia
  • nivalis: growing in or near snow ex: galanthus nivalis (common snowdrop)
  • muralis: growing on walls
  • mirabilis: marvellous, wonderful
  • formosa: beautiful ex: dicentra formosa, a.k.a.western bleeding heart/dutchman's breeches/lady in a bath
  • carpe vitam: get a life
  • Carolus Linnaeus: Latinized name of Carl von Linne (1707-1778), Swedish naturalist considered the father of plant taxonomy. Whatta guy.