Thursday, December 17, 2015

Warm weather for December

The weird weather continues.
The violets are not complaining.  Blossoms make a classy addition to any salad.  The leaves thicken soups much like gumbo.

Oyster mushrooms

These are growing right out of the top of the stump.

Short-nonexistent stem, long gills, late autumn, on poplar-or-willow.  It is a pity that nobody in our house is a big mushroom eater.
Blackberry leaves.  Good source of Vitamin C during the winter.

A little science project

I wondered if the seeds I planted last week would be able to shatter the clay clods.  I decided to run an experiment.

I mixed five grams of Maximilian Sunflower seeds with 300 grams of dried, clumping cat litter.  I split the batch in two.  Half the batch I treated in the normal manner.  That is, I mixed with water and formed Rum Balls.

The other half was mixed with an equal volume of 17% protein hog feed.  My thinking was that the corn based feed would disintegrate more quickly in the weather and that the decomposing protein would fertilize the young seedlings.  Water was added to the clay/hog feed mix until a moldable consistency was reached.

You can see the larger corn particles.  One downside of this approach is that it may increase predation by rodents.

Rum balls were placed in a standard flat on top of commercial potting soil.  Short red plastic markers were placed by the baseline rum balls.

Close up of a baseline rum ball and weed trimmer string marker.
The flat will be left outside over the winter and germination success will be evaluated about June 1, 2016.

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