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Recent Entries to this Blog 2016 Veggie Gardens
Posted: 03 Aug 2016
Summer speed sprouts
Posted: 12 May 2015
Mystery plant just blossomed
Posted: 07 May 2015
Lost track of time
Posted: 06 May 2015
The latest and greatest in my water garden.
Posted: 29 Mar 2015

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Beeker's Blog

2016 Veggie Gardens

Category: Vegetable Gardening | Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 6:09 pm

Well, I haven't posted for this year's veggie gardens yet, not because I haven't planted, but because I just haven't gotten around to it.

There is good news, bad news and indifferent news.

Indifferent news:
I didn't get around to starting any seeds indoors this year. Considering that when I do start them, they never grow taller than an inch, I figured it wouldn't make much difference if I started them indoors or outdoors. It would probably be beneficial to start them outdoors via direct sow instead of starting them indoors and then putting the little inchlings through the stress of a transplant, so that is what I did. All went well and sprouted except for some seeds that are getting a bit old. The best performers are tomatoes, summer squash, winter squash, lettuce and watermelon. I also ended up with some volunteer tomatoes.

Bad news:
That groundhog is back. Snipped the tips off my peppers and beans in the lower garden. I'm not expecting much from those but I was able to harvest a couple of peppers for a salad last night. I also found a hole in the upper garden. It doesn't look big enough for a groundhog but something ate the leaves off of one stem of tomatoes. The hole seems too small for a groundhog or rabbit, unless it is a very small rabbit. We obviously need check and repair the fence.

Good news:
The volunteer tomatoes are doing very well, the planted tomatoes are doing very well and the tomato plant starts that were given to me are doing fantastic. The peppers were also given to me and they were great too. It is unfortunate that two got hit by the groundhog but the other two gave me a couple of early peppers. I see a couple of nice watermelons growing and an acorn squash that I am tempted to pick.

Autumn plans:
Build some raised beds and fill them with healthy soil. Our soil is sandy and rocky.
Finish mending the fences and make any adjustments needed to keep the rodents out.

Here is my first harvest for the season:

2016 1st harvest for salad ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

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Summer speed sprouts

Category: Vegetable Gardening | Posted: Tue May 12, 2015 7:55 pm

I planted my cucumbers, summer squash, zucchini, acorn squash and butternut squash about a week ago. The cukes, summer squash and zucchini are all sprouting. I plan to put them outside this coming weekend. I also plan to plant my tomatoes, eggplant and watermelon outside this coming weekend too. There is supposed to be one night below 40 this week, but it looks promising that that should be the last one. It should be safe for my veggies to finally go outside.
I've been holding back, not only because of our frost date, but because the past two years we've had very wet springs which caused me to lose a lot of tomato plants to root rot. This year is off to a very dry start.
But, I'm looking forward to the weekend!

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Mystery plant just blossomed

Category: Fishtank Gardening | Posted: Thu May 07, 2015 2:29 am

This is a pleasant surprise!
I don't know what plant this is, and I certainly didn't know that it would blossom, but here it is! Can anyone identify it?

Mystery plant ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

Mystery plant ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

Mystery plant flower ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

Mystery plant flower ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

This blog entry has been viewed 472 times

Lost track of time

Category: Vegetable Gardening | Posted: Wed May 06, 2015 4:28 am

I only just planted my squash seeds this weekend. I hope they pop fast. It is just about time to plant outside! I probably can do it now, but I don't want to chance it just yet. It has been about 80 degrees yesterday and today, and in the 40s at night. I think it is safe, but I'm just nervous about a cold snap hitting.
Here is an updated photo.
Why aren't the seedlings growing? They haven't grown much in the month they've been in the window.

2015 May seedlings ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

This blog entry has been viewed 505 times

The latest and greatest in my water garden.

Category: Fishtank Gardening | Posted: Sun Mar 29, 2015 6:47 pm

Anubias Barteri Flower ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

I've had Anubias Barteri bloom for me a few times in the past, but never have I gotten 3 flowers at once!
I'm pretty excited over this.

Anubias Barteri Flowers ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

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Veggie sprouts update

Category: Vegetable Gardening | Posted: Sun Mar 29, 2015 6:15 pm

I'm happy to report that just a couple of days ago, another pepper sprouted. That makes 4 out of 6. I am disappointed to say that I still don't see any eggplant seeds sprouting yet. That leaves two eggplants, two peppers, one beefsteak tom and one watermelon that still haven't sprouted.

2015 - Six seeds won't sprout ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

But, onward...
I've transplanted 6 more sprouts into pots and took the two tomatoes and one watermelon from the original four that I potted early, and moved them upstairs to the front window along with three of the strongest looking newly potted sprouts.

2015 sprouts in window ( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

I am currently performing water changes on my fish tanks, and am holding myself back from watering my plants with the tank water. I would rather my babies work on their roots than to worry about foliage at this point.
After learning more about potassium and phosphorus, I've decided that when I transplant these seedlings out to the garden, I'll mix some beans and squash mush into the soil to promote root growth. I think I'll also keep that in mind next year when I transplant the seedlings into the pots. Any thoughts or ideas? Currently, I have them in organic potting soil and am watering them with spring water. I know it may be some over-kill with babying them, but I also want the fluoride levels to be minimal, as I have adverse reactions to it and to water them with tap water would not be good for them or me due to the fluoride content.

So, that is the story with the progress of these slow starters. Now, onto the sprinters... I can't decide if I should plant my squash seeds now or wait a couple more weeks. Now that I can get to more pots, I couldn't before because they were in the shed and there was over 3 feet of snow blocking the door, I can plant the seeds directly in pots and not have to worry about them going crazy on me like last year. Any thoughts or ideas?
Next to plant will be summer squash, zucchini, cucumbers, acorn squash and butternut squash.

It is really saddening to know that the time is drawing near when I will have to pull out a TON of volunteer tomato plants. My heart is breaking just thinking about it. *teardrop*

So, again, any thoughts or ideas are very welcome!

This blog entry has been viewed 314 times

Here we go!!! 2015 sprouts coming along!

Category: Vegetable Gardening | Posted: Sun Mar 22, 2015 5:04 pm

I don't know why I don't write things down. I know my memory is terrible, so I should, but I guess I just can't remember to do it... umm... Yep, I just said that...

Anyway... I planted my seeds a couple of weeks ago. I can't remember what day because I didn't mark my calendar. It was either the last or second to last weekend of February. I placed them on the heating pads under the grow light and they sprouted, when, I don't know because I didn't write it down.

( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

Not all of the dixie cups would fit in that mini-green house gadget, so I put the rest in plastic trays. Those seem to have sprouted faster than the ones in the mini-green house. Odd.

( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

But, they are doing well. I took 4 seedlings with their dixie cup of seed starting media and moved them into 6 inch pots with regular, organic soil.

( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

After I did that, I got nervous because I thought they might still be too young, as they didn't have their second set of leaves yet. I decided to leave the rest alone and treat it as sort of an experiment. Thankfully, it has been a week, maybe more, and all is going well. The second leaves are starting to show now.

( photo / image / picture from Beeker's Garden )

So, here are the stats so far:

I planted:

7 Beefsteak Toms - 6 have sprouted
6 Plum Toms - all have sprouted
6 Pepper plants - 3 have sprouted
2 Watermelons - 1 has sprouted
2 Eggplants - none have sprouted.

Any thoughts, questions, ideas are welcome!

This blog entry has been viewed 251 times

Busy day repotting...

Category: Houseplants | Posted: Sat Nov 29, 2014 5:13 am

I've been procrastinating for soooo long...
But it is amazing what a little coffee will do.
Since I'm not a coffee drinker, a little bit will go a long way for me. I had about a half cup in my hot chocolate today. Each time I felt myself slow down, I'd take another gulp.
I repotted 6 plants; two Peace Lilies, two African Violets, one English Ivy, and one Philodendron. I potted 7 new plants that were trimmed from other plants, one Purple Heart (I got trimmings from my boss), 4 African Violets (suckers from the two other plants) and one Wax Plant (I got a branch from my boss). I know now isn't the best time, but I set up my grow light again to aid them in their out of season growth.
I'll bring one of my Peace Lilies and my English Ivy back to work and once my African Violets are settled in, I'll bring one of them to work and see how it goes.
Now, all I have left are 4 Orchids and one Coffee Bean tree.
The last time I tried to repot an Orchid it ended up dying. I'm a bit nervous to do it again. Right now, they are unpotted, just sitting on top of some sphagnum moss. Once a week, I take them and dunk them in some water from my fish tank and put them back on top of their moss. They are actually doing quite well that way.
I don't know anything about the coffee tree. I'll have to look into that and see what is recommended for repotting that plant.
Any advice is welcome for the orchids and Coffee Been tree.

This blog entry has been viewed 309 times

Are you considering keeping fish?

Category: Fishtank Gardening | Posted: Wed Oct 29, 2014 1:10 pm

It is a very rewarding hobby and works well with gardening. What completes an outdoor garden pond better than beautiful fish swimming in it? What is more relaxing than sitting on your sofa just watching your fish swim around in their planted tank?

I highly recommend keeping fish, but before you take that leap, just like any pet, there is research and preparation that needs to be done.

Begin by asking yourself these questions:
- Why am I considering getting fish? (decoration, relaxation, to keep as pets)
- Am I willing to make a commitment to take care of another creature that will depend on me for it's livelihood?
- What type of fish would be best for my purpose?
- What fish would be compatible with the local environment and/or environment I plan to build for them?
- What supplies are needed for my fish?

There will be a lot of research to be done, especially for a beginner. First and foremost will be to look up the Nitrogen Cycle. While you are cycling your tank, you can work on creating the proper environment for your fish and make sure they have a comfortable and healthy home. Since cycling the tank can take a while, you can take the time to research the various fish and pick ones you like, but also check the compatibility of the different fish you choose. Will they live comfortably in the home you have created? Will they get along with each other? Make adjustments to your list of fish and also to the tank to give them the best conditions possible. Your fish will be happy and so will you.

As a long-time fishkeeper, I will recommend the forum. There are wonderful members there and great information.
I recommend this thread for seasoned fishkeepers as well as beginners:

This blog entry has been viewed 1496 times

The season is ending and I'm not getting anything done.

Category: Vegetable Gardening | Posted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 12:39 pm

Must... Move... Too... Tired...

I haven't gotten to move my shade bed yet.
One thing I have been doing is keeping an eye on tag sales and trash piles. My cousins and I are helping our grandmother get her house ready to sell. We are filling dumpster after dumpster with old junk, but I have saved quite a few garden tools and other items I can use for gardening. My latest find was two large glass windows. Maybe I can use those on the raised bed to lengthen our growing season.

I think our first frost hit before the weather people or I knew it. The leaves on my tomato plants turned black. I think I really had better move on those. Most of the fruit splits or gets eaten by bugs before I can pick them. I guess this is the time of year that the bugs really hit our tomatoes hard.

One thing I considered, but my better half doesn't like the idea, is mushrooms. We have an old tree stump that will be right on the edge of the bed, and I was thinking of planting mushrooms on it. I understand there is the fear of being poisoned, but if I buy the spores and plant them, I will know what the mushrooms are and that they are edible. For now, I'll wait and see how the bed goes with the stuff we already have, but that is hanging there in the back of my mind.

So, the season is ending and I'm not getting anything done... but I am planning for next year!

This blog entry has been viewed 295 times

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