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Thursday, June 19, 2014

Garden update 1

It's more of garden-permaculture-landscape-weed management update.
Winter was quite harsh on some trees and plants, some did not survive, some are having trouble, some are nursed back.
so nursing back techniques are combined with weed management. Some property owners are not aware of how invasive certain plants are and start promoting them as ground covers. Let's say, field bindweed, cheat grass and red stem fillary is not something a property owner wants. All 3 are  required to be managed by state, among with thistles.
When one has a small yard, weed management is one kind of a scale, on and bordering larger properties or large property itself the weed management is quite another thing. Scale matters.

So here is an example of bindweed management where it was infested and the invasive plant tries to take over, in some cases it did take over. The only thin that can overcome it is grass on a large scale, one the it has being said bindweed mite - a desert bug, very small that feeds on it and only on it. Everything takes time.
This spring weeds are very strong to speak softly about it.
When I realized that amount of mites that will be available is small, a lot smaller then I thought I started covering at least one area, in others I guess I'll buy some kind of fire-heat device to deal with it. using blanket herbicides is not a good thing on my particular property, bindweed is the first thing tat indeed recovers and that is not a good thing. Bindweed is very difficult to overcome to put it simple. On large properties infested with it it becomes very difficult.

So. covering the dirt and building soil and fighting bindweed. A lot to be honest and it grows like crazy.

On some parts weed fabric. It is less beneficial for the plants and the dirt because what is in the dirt is not benefited by decomposing grasses, mulch etc, and the tough weed fabric does lead to water run off, therefore the irrigation placed under it or tight where it's open, and es, bindweed will wind on bush right there.
Here is weed fabric and cardboard. it's not because I did run out at all. When one tries to irrigate and nurse back a large tree that is half damaged the nurturing of close to the surface ponderosa pine roots is very important part of the process.
 here are 2 trees, they are large, and one I'm trying to save. it does not look good, does it. the over the winter damage. many ponderosa's were hit like that, this one is possibly the worst case
 but the nursing back is working, the new grows is there
 this is the mulch. it's a kind of stuff tree trimmers would get from brush-bog area, has mixed properties of straw mulch and guerrilla  mulch (cedar, very finely cut). moisture retention on this is very good.

covering the area like that with guerilla mulch at over $50 a yarn comes down to quite hefty bill. so this kind of local mulch as it's own thing or the bottom layer is a good thing.
this is what I'm covering. trio of bindweed, cheat grass, red stem fillary... and there is some grass that tries to stand a chance but does not.
 covered 'hill' and roses with survivors booshes.
 bindweed in action under tree. it was much... can not see it, right, weeded a week ago.
 only thing that was holding it back is water. not irrigated side
 versus irrigated, well, I did weed it 1/2 just bfore taking a picture. full bindweed coverage
 this I weeded 2 days ago
 and here is wild life. we have a lot of these.
 this was mowed thistle. guess what was under it? right. most spring=bindweed galore.
 and that was mowed a week ago. grasses at the back are allowed to grow and seed. because the weeds and bindweed are under it.

so how did this happen? it turned out that after interviewing some of the neighbors brought some interesting information. several property owners ago there were folk who thought they were farmers and they owned this property. so long story short they overgrazed and abused the land, first thing that comes ad seeds on abused land is bindweed and other weeds.
grass as it it is was seeded over abused land and 7+ years it was maintained like that allowing t to seed. Previous owners did not have very educated landscaper, so they introduces some practices that did backfire as promotion of several invasive plants and bindweed . having dry lot upwind did not hep.
2 years in a row one cuts the grass too shot and allows it to dry that is that is going to happen if spring has 3-4 good rains.
I'd say this is a case when a bit of misunderstanding how the native plants work and some no very good landscaper's advice leads to weds outburst like that. I'm not talking average back yard. The area with ponderosa I was covering is the size of average backyard.
Water saving techniques are very important managing this kind of acreage and being close to large acreage.
Say if one has say 40 hectares infested with bindweed right there they have the work cut out for them to manage this on their own property.

 Here is another area covered earlier for same red stem fillary and bindweed management
the right photo shows how much bindweed grows overnight. pulling it from covered by much area is easier. that's about it
this is bindweed received from state infested with bindweed mites, the received plant is wrapped around growing bindweed plant to start the colony. will se how that goes. heavy rain may be an issue. so these may have to be re-introduced next year
meanwhile I think I'll get me heat device that would damage the plant enough to just drain it's root system and see how that works. Herbicides and tilling are not effective against bindweed, and organic garden and herbicides do not go together anyways.

Any comment from whoever is dealing with strong established bindweed in large quantities and sharing their experiences saving large trees are very welcome in comments.
Oh, forgotten, I did stick some of evergreen fertilizer spikes last week when I say the new grows on those branches that I thought ok, ponderosa if it dyes it does not come back
I have very little to none organic matter in the soil, and some broken asphalt I found digging holes for my new panted roses made me think someone was sure cutting big time on landcape I was wondering why several established booshes did dye. Neighboring area I covered has ood amount of worm activity now and I did not see in there a single worm before I covered it, it was about 2 month ago. so there are good news and there are some failures. The soil has active lime in it. so it produces a lot of challenges like iron chlorosis on maple. That tree I may loose. With free lime in soil ironite does nothing, it gets bound. We have a lot of iron in the soil, tons, it is not in plant available form because of free lime.

Next about the other garden areas. got some flowers :)

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