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I never picked cotton...

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Josh on 9/7/2012, 10:12 pm

I might as well follow it all the way through and learn how to make something from what I spin, (more survival skills) but I don't think it will be much, just something simple. Very Happy

If anyone was wondering if they could grow cotton in a SFG the answer is yes you can!



This is how much I have so far, but there is a lot more!



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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  RoOsTeR on 9/7/2012, 10:30 pm

Pretty cool Josh! I've really enjoyed watching this thread Cool

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  ericam on 9/8/2012, 1:12 am

Very cool Josh, you could try some simple weaving or braiding or even crochet and make a belt.

Mum and dad went on a trip to Queensland recently and as they passed through northern NSW there were cotton fields and they picked up some of the cotton that was blowing along the side of the road.

So now I have some seeds, wondering if they would grow...and if I have the room to even attempt it! Laughing

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Josh on 9/8/2012, 9:01 pm

So now I have some seeds, wondering if they would grow...and if I have the room to even attempt it!
My SFG of cotton is a 4 X 6 and I planted one plant to each square, 24 plants, there is a lot of cotton bolls on the plants. Check your growing days, and if you have a long enough growing season, and even a small SFG, I bet you could grow cotton too!

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  ericam on 9/8/2012, 11:12 pm

I've got four 3 x 4's and they are already accounted for in my spring planting, I also have two pots going and am about to start a few potato bags. I'd have to start a new bed and I really don't know where I'd put it plus the fact that I don't have a lot of time at the moment as I'm trying to finish a patchwork quilt for my father-in-law's birthday!

Thanks for the vote of confidence though, Josh, I love your enthusiasm. Very Happy My experiments with cotton might just have to wait until next year.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Josh on 10/19/2012, 5:29 pm

I've picked 342 cotton bolls so far from my 24 plants in a 4 x 6 SFG. I still have lots more on the plants if our weather holds out long enough for them to open up.

I have showed it to several people and the herb garden club, many people did not know that there was any other color other than white.

I have a booth at the herb show in Feb. and the members have told me to be sure and put some of my cotton for sale at my booth, people from around our area will want to buy it, for the seeds, so I think I will bag them up three in a package to sell.

My mom and dad were amazed at how much cotton was on 24 plants!



So far I have hand spun this much, but I have to separate the seed from the cotton, card it and then try to spin it by hand.

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I grew this!

Post  Josh on 1/13/2013, 4:09 pm

I grew this!


I grew the gourd and my mom taught me how to put a design on one of the gourds I grew using dye on the inside of the gourd to make the leaf design on the gourd.
Also my mom crochet the table mat from the cotton I grew. She showed me how to do the crochet, but it would take me forever to make anything, so she made it for me.

I have a lot of cotton left, I can't believe how much you can get from 24 plants!

I will be making something from weaving, I think I can do that, I'll post it when I get it done.

I did make a drop spindle that works really good. My mom has a foot spindle that she got for Christmas and I can spin the cotton on it pretty good.



This is was a fun SFG project, so when your planning your SFGs this year, you might want to think about growing a few cotton plants.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  nycquilter on 1/13/2013, 4:14 pm

Josh,

I am so so so impressed! with the cotton, your mom's crocheting, and your gourd.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  llama momma on 1/13/2013, 4:37 pm

Way to go Josh

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Toady on 1/13/2013, 6:02 pm

As a fellow spinner it's great to see that there's some younger people still interested in learning the art (then again I only learnt 5 years ago). You've also inspired me to see if I can get some cotton seeds down here and grow them. Also bet that bunny poop from your angoras makes great fertilizer (sadly I lost my young English Angora bunny in October)

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  FamilyGardening on 1/13/2013, 7:20 pm

josh that is really neat!

happy gardening
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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  nycquilter on 1/13/2013, 8:17 pm

Josh

would you be willing to share your mother's technique for the gourds? I grew bird's-nest gourds this year.

and I told my husband, I wish I had a son like you. It would be so much fun to garden with you.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Josh on 1/13/2013, 8:48 pm

Thank you Laurie!

Here is how she did it,
She drew a paper pattern of a leaf, and placed it on the gourd and used an old ink pen that didn't write anymore to make a fine line cut into the gourds skin around the leaf pattern, and once she had all of the leaves she wanted on the gourd she took a knife and scraped off all of the skin on the gourd around the leaves.


Once you get that done, you cut the top off the gourd, she added some water and put the top back on and let it set a week or two. Then take and empty out the gourd, the inside should be soft and remove easy, it will be smelly.
Then refill the gourd with water and ritz dye, she used maroon, or you can use natural dyes, very strong coffee will make brown. Leave it a couple more weeks, and check the water level, keep it filled with water to the top. Wherever the skin of the gourd is, it will soak up the dye from inside, but where the gourd skin was scraped off it will stay a natural color. After the gourd skin leaves start to rot, (about 3 weeks) empty the dye out, scrape off the gourd skin leaves and there will be the pattern on the gourd. Then just let the gourd dry and if you want it shinny give it a couple of coats of polyurethane.

It was the first time we ever tried it, it looks pretty cool.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  nycquilter on 1/13/2013, 9:25 pm

It really is beautiful. I will try this next summer. I've already dried my gourds. I may try turning one of them into a ladle though it's likely only for fun and/or show as I don't think I could bear to use it. And thank you so much for your immediate reply.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  deriter on 1/14/2013, 8:08 am

So Josh, when you start the scraping of the skin, has this gourd been dried out, or is it still uncured? I am assuming it would be in order to pour in water. That is a cool idea of decorating these gourds. I like it!

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Triciasgarden on 1/15/2013, 1:25 am

That is some beautiful cotton and such an amazing amount! Both of your parents garden, don't they? That's nice to share the interest. I seem to be the only one around here, except for visiting grandkids, lol. It's so nice to see your projects and get all the instructions. I have been wanting to grow and decorate a gourd also so will have to save these instructions! One of my grandmothers gardened, crocheted, quilted, knitted, sewed, etc. She would just love to see your cotton and your mom's doiley. My 20 year old daughter is doing a lot of crocheting and I tell her that her great grandmother must be so proud! Thank you so much for sharing!

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Josh on 1/16/2013, 5:33 pm

Triciasgarden, yes everyone at my house gardens Very Happy My mom said to say thank you for the compliment on the crochet Smile

@deriter wrote:So Josh, when you start the scraping of the skin, has this gourd been dried out, or is it still uncured?

It is uncured, and very green, and it was the first time for try cutting a green gourd open. In that photo of the gourd with the leaves with the skin still on it, the top has been cut open, and the top is just sitting back in place on the gourd. after you make your design on the gourd, you can cut the top off pretty easy since it is not cured, a steak knife is what my mom used to cut it with, a lot like cutting a pumpkin open, then she filled it with water, and put the lid back on and left it sit for a couple of weeks, the inside of the gourd, the meaty part, like a pumpkin, will get rotten and come out easy, although it will be smelly. After all the fleshy part is out of the gourd, then fill it up with water and dye for a few more weeks, in the photo the skin is starting to turn dark, you can see a little bit of green down by the bottom in the photo, the dye had been in there for a couple of weeks when she took that picture. Once the skin is dark, and it starts to get moldy but not completely dry, then it should be time to empty the gourd of the water and dye, and scrape off the skin and it will have the print of the design left on the gourd.

Take a look at this video when you get time, this is where she got her info from.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  deriter on 1/17/2013, 4:09 pm

Thanks Josh!

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  FamilyGardening on 1/17/2013, 5:14 pm

what a great video josh!

we are so excited to try and grow some gourds cheers the kids will love drawing and carving .....what a great thing.... sunny....thank you so much for sharing!

happy gardening
rose..... who is off to research growing gourds in the PNW....and find some seeds

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  CindiLou on 1/17/2013, 5:49 pm

Have a few bolls of mixed white, green,brown coming..I am going to try cotton.

I did gourds last year. But I didn't get them started early enough! I got some small gourds but they were too green at frost time. So I am going to start them earlier. I have basket, dipper, and another one that I forget. I really would love to get the basket one going good! And the gourd!

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  littlejo on 1/17/2013, 7:35 pm

Josh, I just love that you grew cotton. If I can get some seed, I'm going to try it. I just cannot believe the chemicals that are used on cotton in the big fields down here. Did you have any bugs that bothered your cotton?
I guess I'll have to learn how to 'spin' the yarn.
You can hold up your Mom's doily and say 'I grew this'

What kind of gourd is that?
It sure is pretty. Thanks for the video. I think a lot of us are going to grow gourds and cotton!
Jo

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Josh on 1/20/2013, 4:31 pm

I made a short video of me spinning cotton with the kick spindle, it's pretty easy with the kick spindle, it's easy to get it to spin fast.


If anyone would like to have some cotton seed, I'd be glad to send you some, just send me a PM.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  Josh on 1/20/2013, 4:32 pm

The gourd was a banjo gourd, but the big ones split open, I've never had that happen before, but we had a really bad drought last year, that might have had something to do with it.

I have some of the banjo gourd seeds if anyone wants some of those.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

Post  FamilyGardening on 1/21/2013, 2:02 am

Smile great video on the cotton josh!!

our son who is six years old said *you are a pretty cool teenager*

we found some bird house gourds at walli world Very Happy

gonna be fun!.....the kids are excited too tongue

thanks again josh!!....we would have never known about how cool growing gourds and cotton could be Very Happy

happy gardening
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Why did Josh's pictures disappear?

Post  kauairosina on 7/10/2014, 5:14 pm

Loved that thread about cotton.  I brush our Maine Coon and save all the hair and try spinning it.  I'd sure like to know how to do it.  Also we have a lot of Malamute hair.  Gonna have to try cotton.  That's pretty outrageous.  I don't even recall seeing cotton seeds online but then I never looked.  Cotton would work a lot better out here than animal clothing,although the Malamute is in Koke`e, 2500 feet and considerably cooler.

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Re: I never picked cotton...

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