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CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  trolleydriver on 2/19/2016, 3:57 pm

It will be weeks before I see any weeds around here. Getting another 10 centimetres of snow today. Then tomorrow we are getting rain and +5 Celsius temps.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/19/2016, 5:36 pm

TD, they are there! They are there!

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  trolleydriver on 2/19/2016, 8:57 pm

KJ ... In the past few years, the worst weed for me has been Creeping Charlie. It has started to take over my lawns. It's almost impossible to get rid of it without harsh chemicals that are banned in Ontario. It's easy to pull out of flower beds but it gets all tangled up in the grass and pulling/raking it usually ends up pulling out the grass as well. So I think I will have to embrace it as a natural ground cover. I just need to get over the idea of having what is considered a "perfect lawn". We have been brain washed into thinking lawns are to be perfectly manicured and totally weed free. Interestingly Creeping Charlie has medicinal uses and can be used to make a tea.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  p14shooter on 2/19/2016, 9:25 pm

@Kelejan wrote:Take a deep breath ,TD and P14shooter.

Do what you can and do not fret about it. 

TD, just do one or two extra things and continue with what you have already done otherwise you may get burn-out and that would be a great shame.

P14, don't try to do everything at once.  There will always be things you just do not get round to.
But kelejan, I wanna do it all.....But I will wait.  Actually, with a little more reading, this forum and other internet sites and books, I think I will make this a learning year for myself.  Yes I am still going to do what I originally planned and plant a wack of peas and beans in one bed, but the other I will learn and grow on.  I expect some successes, and some failures.  I have just planted (indoors) broccoli, and will be doing cabbage and onions in the next day or so.  I have never done it before so now is the time.  My indoors is not ready for any real growing so I am going to experiment with cloches as well.  I will direct sow some as will later (I have one bed covered with plastic right now warming it up).  I figure doing this, if it all fails, I can at least go and buy some transplants later.  I am going to try some varieties of veggies that I don't normally eat just to try as well as some new varieties of stuff I do eat that I have never heard of before.  I plan on trying to extend the season a little in the fall.  Next  year, I will try vertical planting of something (cukes? zukes? don't know yet, that is a year away).  You don't lean by having successes, you learn by failing so I hope to fail just a little bit this year.  I hope though whatever I learn or succeed at will be worthy of posting here.  I know I am just a newby doing what you all have done in the past, but it could be worth a laugh.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/20/2016, 1:32 am

P14, I will not laugh as I love your enthusiasm as it rubs off on me as well.

I love both you and TD for all the things you are trying to accomplish, and you will have some great successes this year.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  sanderson on 2/20/2016, 2:42 am

P14, We do not laugh at enthusiasm. My first summer I planted basically a square of everything, just to get a feel. Some things turned out good, others were disasters!

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  AtlantaMarie on 2/20/2016, 8:08 am

We ALL go thru that "I want it all" thing. I won't call it a phase, because it's not. I still want to grow it all! :-)

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  trolleydriver on 2/20/2016, 9:58 am

Thanks for all the comforting words. I am starting to feel more at ease with where I am heading this year with SFG. I have come to grips with the truth that I can't do it all. I started late last year and still accomplished a ton of things and had fun doing it. So I should be able to handle some expansion of my SFG set up this year and still have fun.

Mrs TD and I will be visiting one of the local garden centres today. They have the largest selection of seeds in all of Eastern Ontario. I bought my vermiculite from them last year so I'll see if they have any available today. If they do then I'll make a head start on my new boxes and purchase a 4 cubic foot bag.

I just got an email from the Old Farmer's Almanac Garden Planner reminding me that it's time to sow onions and leeks indoors. I'm one step ahead of them since I already did that this past week.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  trolleydriver on 2/20/2016, 1:11 pm

Well my trip to the garden centre turned out to be a bit of a bust. They had their "store" open but not a lot of seeds to choose from. I did purchase some. As for the vermiculite, they have it in stock but it was not readily accessible. They start sowing indoors on March 3rd and that is when things start coming into the place for sale to the public.

I also went to Home Depot Canada to price out a few things. I came out with my eyes going around in circles from the sticker shock. Some example follow:

1/2" x 10' EMT conduit - $5.47

1/2" x 10' PVC pipe - $8.05 (Yikes!)

2" x 6" x 8' Cedar $12.34 (Ouch!)

1/2" x 4' x 4' Plywood - $21.93

I may have to rethink some of my SFG construction projects. Any new boxes will have to made with SPF (spruce, pine, fir) grade wood ... it's most likely the horrible spruce in my area.  My idea for a table top SFG made out of cedar is not going to happen. I may have to go around to construction sites, as Mel suggests, and see if I can scrounge some free lumber.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  CapeCoddess on 2/20/2016, 1:41 pm

@trolleydriver wrote: I may have to go around to construction sites, as Mel suggests, and see if I can scrounge some free lumber.

That's what I do. My whole SFG is from scrap. Look for construction sites that are wrapping a house in Ty...um, whatever it's called...that black stuff, before putting up the siding. Apparently they use quite a few rejected 2"x 10" x 12' (I think) when transporting it. If you take it then they don't have to pay to dump it. win win!

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  trolleydriver on 2/20/2016, 2:01 pm

Thanks CC for that great advice.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  sanderson on 2/20/2016, 3:04 pm

Canadian sticker shock!! What a Face My first 4 beds and a couple others were made from scrap lumber from housing construction sites.  Just get permission from the site manager first.  Two different hauls of studs (SPF):

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  p14shooter on 2/20/2016, 6:56 pm

I have a local mill near me and they sell rough 2x4 ends for a buck usually 5-6 feet long.  I have bought them before for other reasons.  Not pretty, but they don't have to be

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Scorpio Rising on 2/20/2016, 9:51 pm

@p14shooter wrote:I have a local mill near me and they sell rough 2x4 ends for a buck usually 5-6 feet long.  I have bought them before for other reasons.  Not pretty, but they don't have to be

Lucky you! I don't have a saw....but I do have friends with saws.....

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/21/2016, 9:57 am

Yesterday I was going to do my half-hours weeding but got side-tracked by passing neighbours who stopped to talk and by the time we finished I was cold and stiff and came indoors.

I will have to put up a fence to hide behind.  Seriously though, I do enjoy the talking with passersby since I felled my trees and I can be seen. Very Happy

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  p14shooter on 2/21/2016, 3:21 pm

my first sign of life today.  Garlic starting to poke its head out.  They are not part the the real SFG but using the same principals.  5/24 showing.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/21/2016, 7:38 pm

Isn't exciting P14?  Are you likely to get any heavy frost?

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  p14shooter on 2/21/2016, 7:59 pm

supposed to be a big one tomorrow night.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/21/2016, 9:15 pm

Then the tops of your garlic may take a hit. Could you find an old blanket to cover them?

If you get a bad frost, let us know if they are OK.  My garlic was covered with several inches of fall leaves and even they are showing their tips.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/23/2016, 2:01 am

I spent a couple of hours today repairing the boulevard (the grass strip separating my garden from the road, that belongs to the city but the homeowner has to maintain in good condition) sweeping all the gravel that was included in the snow piles that are swept from the road. The grass area is approximatley 100 feet wide by about 40 feet deep.

This year the grass is scraped and ragged and really needs a lot of repair. Moving back clods of grass and using the lawn rake to rake the gravel back on to the road side to be swept up by the city sweepers when they get round to our road.

At the moment they have only got as far as the Downtown so we will have to wait our turn.  Last year I did this work too late, so that after scraping all the debris I had the extra labour of finding somewhere to put it and that was quite job with no transport.

I have managed to clear about two-thirds but the remaining third will be a lot harder and there is a lot more ripped-up grass and bare patches to be filled. Then extra grass seed has to be sown as well. By the time September comes it looks nice again, then it starts all over again. Every year.

The reason I have more work to do than my neighbours is that I am at the junction of a very acute turn down to a lower road and vehicles just use all my grass area and kill it.  My neighbour opposite me, their roof top is at the level of my road and the road junction is a very steep climb and many vehicles scrape their undersides  and score the black top which has to be repaired time and time again.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  trolleydriver on 2/23/2016, 8:54 am

Here we go again ... another weather warning for my area. Environment Canada says, 


"A major winter storm is expected to affect Ontario Wednesday and Thursday.

A low pressure system is expected to develop and emerge from Texas today, then track northeast towards the Lower Great Lakes and intensify into a moisture laden winter storm Wednesday.

This winter storm is expected to bring significant amounts of rain, snow and ice pellets, along with the possibility of freezing rain. These types of winter storms from Texas typically bring 15 to 30 mm or more of rain to locales that get mainly rain, and 15 to 30 cm of heavy snow onto regions that get hardest hit by the heaviest snow. A band of freezing rain and ice pellets often forms over regions near the rain-snow line."

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/24/2016, 12:28 am

My sympathies once again, TD.

Here the temperature was forecast to be 10C but only reached 5C by this afternoon and as the grass still had  frost on it I gave myself a day off as I was tired from yesterday's efforts of raking gravel off the grass for two hours.

But it was a sunny day so dog and I went for a nice walk.  I hope to continue my roadside clearing and repair tomorrow as once again the forecast is sunny and 10C then it will be done until next year.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/25/2016, 1:33 am

Finished raking the grass etc. so I am ahead compared to this time last year.
The temperature supposed to be 10C again today, but once more, although the frost was off the grass, it never rose about 5C so was still pretty chilly. But the job is done and i am giving myself a day off tomorrow.

Prepared some spinach seeds by scarifying and putting them in the fridge for 24 hours then in my utility room where the temperature is about 60F for the seeds to sprout before putting them into pots.

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  sanderson on 2/25/2016, 2:02 am

KJ, sometimes I wonder how you get so much done. I pat myself on the back just getting out of bed. Wink

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

Post  Kelejan on 2/25/2016, 9:58 am

@sanderson wrote:KJ, sometimes I wonder how you get so much done.  I pat myself on the back just getting out of bed. Wink

You must note, sanderson, that I worked one day, had a day off as it was rather physical, finished the job next day so having a day off today. I did a total of four hours work in four days.  It's known as pacing oneself.

Also, pat yourself on the head as you do so much for this Forum to keep it going.
That is what I appreciate about what you do. Very Happy

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Re: CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in February 2016

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