Saturday, March 8, 2014
Thursday, March 6, 2014
For the 19 years that I was an organic landscaper here and in Denver I created a great many landscapes for my clients that were radical for the times.....greatly reduced lawn areas replaced with informal English style cottage gardens of Old Roses, perennials, some annuals plus herbs and veggies. Not once did any of my clients get cited by code, even in very upscale neighborhoods with lots of anal-retentive rules. But I relied on two "distractions"....using all organic nutrients like fish meal, cotton seed meal, soybean meal, I made what lawn remained THE thickest and greenest and most weed free in the neighborhood. Secondly, I made those landscape beds THE most colorful in the neighborhood. Neighbors seem VERY hesitant to turn in neighbors to code just because their beautiful landscape is a little different. Super reliable sources of color to border "controversial" permaculture gardens in central Florida with include old fashioned red and lavender pentas (IF you can find them as the modern dwarfs suck), Sulfur Cosmos (super easy from seeds plus reseeds), Blue and Red Porterweed, Turnera, Salvia leucantha, Salvia 'Indigo Spires', Salvia coccinea, Vincas, Dwarf allamanda, 'Cramoisi Superieur' rose, Eranthemum pulchellum, various ruellias. All of my business came from word of mouth, often from the neighbors OF my clients. My own yards have always tended to be messy and jungly BUT super colorful, so I've had MINIMAL problems with code all these years.
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
I've been obsessing on perennial onions for central Florida for years in this yard, have tried so many kinds that turned out to be either winter annuals or short lived perennials. I am now about 99% sure that "Eliska's Bunching Onion" IS different from my strain of Allium fistulosum, even just by looking at the two...mine as it divides makes stalks that at the outset are very thick and stout and leek-like....with "Eliska's" the divisions when young are VERY thin, like thin knitting needles. Plus it is VERY mild and sweet vs. mine is pungent onion. The bloom spheres on mine dwarf those of "Eliska's". So I feel it is very likely that we all now have access to TWO onions that are truly perennial multipliers in central Florida! And both are Mystery Onions!
For years I grew 'Sweet 100' and was very pleased, but this year I grew just ONE plant of its descendant, 'Supersweet 100' and daily I am getting far more fruits than I can eat. Excellent flavor too. I grew the vine in a Water Wise Container Garden I made from a discarded Tampa recycle bin and made the hugelkultur soil from various things in my yard, including dried chicken poop. Since it is "indeterminate" the vine is rampant. Even though hybrids don't breed true from seeds, I am going to process and save quite a few to sow this fall out of curiosity.