Friday, 1 October 2010

Whizbang Winter Squash Secret

This is taken from Herrick Kimball's blog, Whizbang Gardening. Essays on gardening on his homestead. Growing garlic (1,200 bulbs annually), compost sifting, and much more.

The secret to growing good winter squash is here. The trick is using a post hole digger, and digging a hole, to a depth of 18-24 inches. Into this hole compost is put in. Layering between dirt and compost until level with ground. Than soak it, after it has gone down from the liquid add more layers of dirt and compost until level. Now plant 4 squash seeds. Over this place some hoops to make clotche. Place over the hoops some fabric to keep the bugs out, but sunlight and rain in. To keep it down put the side of a tire over it.

When it is big enough you can take the fabric and tire side off. The plant should be big enough that any insect damage will not harm it severely. This is a great way to start off plants healthy without insects without having to use poison.

To read a better version of it, go here. I can't wait to try this next year!

English Vintner


I harvested some of my basil, a lot of it had already flowered, but had not yet fully matured seed. I let it flower to let bees have more herb flowers. I am really getting into letting some of your plants go to seed, partly so that you can save the seed, partly to have flowers, for the bees and other insects.

So, I harvested I think 5-6 plants. Pulled them up from the ground. I brought them back and cut off the roots. I than stripped off the flower buds. I brought them inside and hand picked off the leaves that had no spots and were good looking. That meant about 50% went to compost. But, I have 3 dehydrator trays full right now, and can probably fill another two, just from the 'good' leaves. I didn't make much pesto because we don't have a food processor. I think I will put that on my birthday list. I am drying most all of it. Though, when we get close to our frost I plan on potting a few plants to bring inside through the winter, to have some fresh basil.

I should have enough fresh basil to last more than till spring. Probably till next Autumn or more. I'll probably give some of it away.

English Vintner