More Science Stuff

1.  An announcement.  Since I cannot magically pull a gardening blog out of my ass for Middle Tennessee staffed by the brilliant people I know working under my thumb for no pay while I plot the downfall of the world, maybe we just make Sundays here an unofficial official gardening discussion.  I’ll let y’all know what I’m up to and you can talk about what you’re up to and it’ll be interesting or not.

2.  The Squirrel Queen posts about worms.  I am grossed out by worms, but I always try to save them when I see they’ve been caught on the sidewalk after it rains and the sun comes out.  My favorite part from the place the Squirrel Queen links to?

A worm called Xenoturbella bocki is the master of minimalism in worms. It has no mouth, stomach, brain, or any internal organs! The only thing this primitive worm has in common with other worms is its shape. Scientists couldn’t quite classify it on discovery. DNA tests indicated it was related to molluscs, but later testing indicated that the worms may have eaten the molluscs -somehow, even with no mouth or organs.

16 thoughts on “More Science Stuff

  1. Oh, I’d definitely be in for a Sunday gardening discussion, I’m no expert, but I have been doing it for, uh, several decades now, so I might have some knowledge to impart. Also, I am planning an ambitious raised bed project, and have lots of resources to share. Count me in!

    I also love worms.

  2. I love worms. I always address them, in the vocatative, as “our friend the earthworm” or “our friend the compost heap worm.”

    I’m up for Sunday gardening discussions, too. I also think someone needs to get Saraclark over to Rachel’s to help her figure out her situation there.

  3. Did y’all hear that Rachel is considering doing a strawbale garden? She sent me a bunch of links, but basically, you just get a strawbale very wet, plant your stuff on it, and keep it wet and it starts to slowly compost and feed your plants.

    I cannot wait to hear about it and I hope we can sucker her in to discussing it on Sundays. And I will post my list of all the things we’re planting.

  4. Are you really going to do a square foot garden? I tried thinking along those lines last year, but I found I hadn’t done enough planning ahead to make it work.

  5. I’m considering it, seriously, but your talk of “planning ahead” makes me nervous. What problems did you run into? The thing I’m excited about about it is that it kind of lets me think about the decorative aspects of gardening. I mean, if I can have 4-ft square plots with grass between them, just about the only drawback I see is how to effectively water them, I think it’d be really cool looking.

  6. First, Sunday’s for garden talk sounds wonderful.

    Second, I have 2 strawbales in the backyard that Rachel, you are welcome to come and get. They’re yours for the taking.

    Third, worms – my grandmother, when I was a child, raised worms. She had an old deepfreeze in a shed and she raised them in there. To this day, there are certain things that smell like that worm food. And it always brings back good memories of sprinkling that stuff on the top of the soil. The things you learn in the South..

  7. Well, see, the planning ahead I meant was in actually having the plots marked out and separated. I thought, “why do rows of greens? why not have a little area here for my lettuce and a little area there for my Chinese cabbage and so on” but because I hadn’t thought it out right it was much harder to keep everything weeded, and to be sure there was enough space for the various plants. If I hadn’t done it as a last moment inspiration but had thought more about what was to go where, it would probably have worked.

    About that strawbale thing: do you put seeds and/or transplants into the straw? Into the soil below the straw? I’m not getting a clear picture.

  8. nm, I’ll send you some links. I don’t know a lot about it yet, just that my aunts did it for tomatoes and peppers last year and had a lot of success.

  9. I’ve seen the straw bale thing done for tomatoes before. It’s highly recommended for use in sandy or salty soil like at the beach. It works, but cutting a hole in the bale to make room for your transplant is hard to do.

    Also a word of warning, all of the wheat grains within the bale are going to sprout and start growing too, they love the water.

  10. just a thought, perhaps add a “Gardening” tag to the blog for quick reference — I can’t think of anything snappier at the moment. A grilled cheese sandwich just zapped my brain.

  11. For irrigation, you can cheaply and easily buy the components for a “drip” irrigation system at Lowes or Home Depot. You’ll need:
    * a hose-adapter (single piece of plastic that screws onto your hose or hose-bib, with a hole that snugly fits a piece of ‘micro’ tubing)
    * micro-tubing (comes in short lengths or long rolls)
    * “T”-connectors (cut a length of tube where you want a dripper, and put the ends of the “T” crossbar into the two ends you just created by cutting; put a short piece of micro-tubing off the bottom of the “T”)
    * drippers and/or misters (drippers are supposed to use less water, but our chameleons love hanging out on plants under the misters)

    Really cheap and easy. If your garden is not going to start very near to your hose-bib, then you might want to run regular garden hose from the house to the edge of the garden, and put the micro-tubing adapter on the end of the hose (instead of doing a long run of micro-tubing, which will restrict water flow).

  12. Beth, yay! Thanks for your offer.

    Saraclark – if any wheat grains sprout, I can feed the sprouts to the kitties, yeah? I’m thinking those cat grass pots are usually wheat.

    Links (which probably mean B will have to fish this out of spam) to straw bale culture info (with the caveat that they all seem to give different instructions):

  13. Rachel, you’re most welcome – Aunt B has my email and phone number. Procure those to get directions here to secure the bale of hay.

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