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Saturday, December 24, 2011

First snow of winter

It's been a very warm fall and early winter so far, but we did get some snow that stuck for a few hours so I got some pictures in while I could. I don't expect winter to be very harsh this year. There's nothing exciting at this time of the year in the garden, but there shouldn't be much happening all throughout winter until around March when the earliest plants start flowering.

Snow finally sticking to the grass

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Pictures of the garlic in the winter

It is now officially winter and the garlic still appears to be growing, but one thing I noticed with the ones that are barely in the ground is that the cloves are all getting rounder, turning into rounds likely in response to the cooler soil temperature as vernalization occurs. I believe that by March, they should all be completely rounded as they are prepared to release all the energy they have saved up. These guys are also a bit larger than the cloves that were planted, but they make their real gains in the spring when they fully mature into bulbs.

Here's one of them showing the top part of the garlic showing how rounded it is becoming in December.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Protecting bamboos over the winter in zone 6

It is a bit early to tarp the bamboos, but up until last year, we haven't seen sub-zero temperatures, but with a record tying low of -9F in upstate NY last year, it is better to be safe so I ended up protection all of my plants yesterday. Historically the only major threat for subzero temperatures goes from the start of January through the end of February and most of my bamboos will start leaf burning from 0F to the -5F range. Simply providing wind protection will make a huge difference and there are many ways to protect bamboos successfully in zone 6. I went overboard just to show the ways I can overwinter them even though many of them probably won't get much leaf burn even without the protection.

Method 1 This method is good for bamboos that are 1 inch or larger in diameter with over 25 culms, upright stature and tight clumping. It should work no matter how large the bamboos get as long as there's a high enough ladder and enough string. I used this on my phyllostachys aureosulcata(yellow groove). It's almost effortless and could be upgraded with a layer of plastic, but I really doubt YG will leaf burn much anyways.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Late season plants; Plants that can keep growing well into december.

From October through March, almost everything stops growing in this climate, but this year, it has been a very warm fall, and perhaps a mild winter will follow, but it is already well into december and there are still many plants growing. It hardly gets below freezing and on some years, there is already a foot of snow on the ground so hopefully this pattern continues.

Here's some of the alliums. None of the garlic cloves seem to be turning into rounds yet which means they are not dormant yet because the soil temperature is still lingering around 50F.
Garlic: I grew several batches over a couple months so many of these will vary in size.