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Thread: Desperately Seeking...Gardening Advice

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Desperately Seeking...Gardening Advice

    I think I have mentioned before that I have a certified Black Thumb and killed aloe veras twice before I successfully adopted some from my sister. Well, those aloes were the descendents (many generations removed) from an aloe my mom had which bloomed one year -- something no one (in the neighborhood where I grew up) had ever seen. I still have some of them -- er, their descendants, actually. A couple are still planted in the cheap dishwasher soap bucket I brought them up here in. And a half dozen got transplanted to the yard -- ie the two foot strip between patio and fence -- when they outgrew the glorious bucket. One of them is huge and apparently bloomed last year. Two of them are in bloom NOW! God, they have thrived under benign neglect -- the only kind of care my plants ever get.

    So, I am cash-strapped this month. I will have some funds next month for doing non-essential stuff. I am thinking of digging up these aloes on the 31st of May and carting them to the new place with roots wrapped in damp paper towels and then shopping on June 1st or 2nd (depending upon when the funds hit my account) for a long, narrow planter and soil. Any suggestions on how to transport them and keep them alive and all that? Even if I had the money, I wouldn't want to transplant them HERE and then move some humongous, heavier-than-hell planter.

    Thanks.
    MZ, plant killer extraordinaire, sigh.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Tom R's avatar
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    aloe

    I would contact your local Cooperative Extension Service. They have a wealth of information for free.

  3. #3
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    If the Aloe plant has gotten really large there is good chance it is also rootbound (unless you've got a huge pot). For ease of transport and survivability it would probably be best to unpot the plant. You will find that it breaks into a bunch of smaller clumps. Don't bother transporting/transplanting the older and larger clumps, just preserve the youngest and smallest ones. There are all sorts of potting soil mixes you can buy at the gardening store, but as you are on a budget and seeing that the original Aloe rhizome liked its current location well enough to get huge it must be pretty good soil. It should be possible to use what's left of the current soil to fill several small containers. The smaller containers will be easier to transport and by placing several smaller plants in multiple pots you will increase survival chances should one or two of them croak. Be sure to give the transplants a healthy dose of water as soon as you pot them. Whenever I transport plants any distance I usually put the terra cotta or plastic plant containers in a larger plastic tub so dirt doesn't get everywhere.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  4. #4
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    To piggyback onto this thread ... here's a dumb question ... roughly how much does a pallet of sod cost? (This is just normal Kentucky Bluegrass, Fine Fescue, or another turfgrass appropriate for the Great Lakes region.)
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

  5. #5
    Quote Originally posted by Dan
    To piggyback onto this thread ... here's a dumb question ... roughly how much does a pallet of sod cost? (This is just normal Kentucky Bluegrass, Fine Fescue, or another turfgrass appropriate for the Great Lakes region.)
    Looks like anywhere from $0.18 to $.25 per square foot and ranging from 800 sq. ft to 4000 sq ft per pallet.

    Here's a link I found: http://www.buckjones.com/sodPricing.html
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  6. #6
         
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    I got a question for all you gardeners...the entire back end of my lot is ALL shade, nothing grows up there except hostas (and the lilac bush but it gets sun in the spring and early morning because of where I placed it...I want some really pretty large-ish bushes (preferably flowering) to plant along the rear fence line, the forsythia I planted is long gone, so are a bunch of other plants I tried...any suggestions??? it is ALL shade...thanks for any info

  7. #7
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Jaxspra
    I got a question for all you gardeners...the entire back end of my lot is ALL shade, nothing grows up there except hostas (and the lilac bush but it gets sun in the spring and early morning because of where I placed it...I want some really pretty large-ish bushes (preferably flowering) to plant along the rear fence line, the forsythia I planted is long gone, so are a bunch of other plants I tried...any suggestions??? it is ALL shade...thanks for any info
    Honeysuckle does quite well in full shade as does Mapleleaf viburnium (and other viburniums) and Japanese Yew bush. Japanese Yew bush flowers nicely every year too! Forsythia can take a little shade but not full shade - but I guess you know that...now.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister
    If the Aloe plant has gotten really large there is good chance it is also rootbound (unless you've got a huge pot). For ease of transport and survivability it would probably be best to unpot the plant. You will find that it breaks into a bunch of smaller clumps. Don't bother transporting/transplanting the older and larger clumps, just preserve the youngest and smallest ones.
    I have done a lot of repotting of aloes over the years -- for my mom, my sister, and myself. This is not a situation of a bunch of little aloes sprouted from the roots. This is half a dozen large, individual plants. And the ones in pots, I have no problem transporting. But I will try to dig up the ones actually in the yard (how they survived the yard, which was completely poisoned with cigarette butts, I will never know!). And I won't have a pot or soil when I transport these. I am thinking something like a paperbag within a plastic bag (for handles and waterproofing) and wrap the bare roots in damp papertowels and then I need to store them overnight. There is a good chance I will kill them in the process. I want to reduce the odds of commiting planticide.

    Maybe I should take a picture today.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally posted by Maister
    Honeysuckle does quite well in full shade as does Mapleleaf viburnium (and other viburniums) and Japanese Yew bush. Japanese Yew bush flowers nicely every year too! Forsythia can take a little shade but not full shade - but I guess you know that...now.
    But beware the spreading of honeysuckle. As much as I love the fragrance, it will try to cover everything in its path and it is a battle to keep it in line.
    I'm going back inside
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  10. #10
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Michele Zone
    I have done a lot of repotting of aloes over the years -- for my mom, my sister, and myself. This is not a situation of a bunch of little aloes sprouted from the roots. This is half a dozen large, individual plants. And the ones in pots, I have no problem transporting. But I will try to dig up the ones actually in the yard (how they survived the yard, which was completely poisoned with cigarette butts, I will never know!). And I won't have a pot or soil when I transport these. I am thinking something like a paperbag within a plastic bag (for handles and waterproofing) and wrap the bare roots in damp papertowels and then I need to store them overnight. There is a good chance I will kill them in the process. I want to reduce the odds of commiting planticide.

    Maybe I should take a picture today.
    You might use moist burlap sacks to transport, like maybe a potato sack. It will do a better job than paper towels at keeping the roots moist. You might be able to ask your local grocer for a few since most usually chunk those. Your most likely to find them at an organic foods market since many places have gone to prepackaged 5lb plastic sacks.

    Also, someone asked about Honeysuckle. We've got a bunch of it in our backyard in giant wooden barrels (decorative) and a wooden wheelbarrow (decorative). Keeping them in large containers seems to have helped with keeping them under control. Though I've never planted it in complete shade, I'm willing to bet that Lantana Lantana horrida might do ok or Autumn Sage Salvia greggii. You might also consider some of the herbs, like Thyme or Spearmint (watchout because Spearmint can go nuts too). They would add some nice fragrance to your yard. You would need to plant them in containers in order to achieve the bushy effect.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Queen B's avatar
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    Thanks MZ for reminding me that my Aloe plant is turned upside down on my porch. The wind blew it off the other day.

    My suggestion on transplanting would be that they will take alot of abuse. I would
    Suggest digging up what you want and sticking dirt and all in a plastic grocery bag. The plastic bag will hold iin some of the moisture. Then I would break them apart when you are ready to pot them.

    Will I have plants of my own waiting! Went to the greenhouse this morning and bought a ton of stuff.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Jaxspra
    I got a question for all you gardeners...the entire back end of my lot is ALL shade, nothing grows up there except hostas (and the lilac bush but it gets sun in the spring and early morning because of where I placed it...I want some really pretty large-ish bushes (preferably flowering) to plant along the rear fence line, the forsythia I planted is long gone, so are a bunch of other plants I tried...any suggestions??? it is ALL shade...thanks for any info
    There are many plants that will do well in shade. Like Gedunker said, stay away from the honeysuckle. It is an invasive plant in many parts of the country. Your best bet is usually to go native. Clethra (Summersweet) is a very showy and fragrant one. Most of the dogwoods do well in shade. Viburnum is another good choice.

    You might also consider garden plants. I put together a very tall and lush garden in one particularly shady corner of my old house. It included ferns, phlox, columbine, yellow coneflower, spotted jewelweed, wild ginseng, campanula, cupplant, and a couple others I do not remember. The cupplant is especially interesting. It will reach 12 feet (3 meters), has yellow flowers, and has leaves that form cups to catch water. The birds then come to the plant to drink.

    Here are a few pics.





    The cupplant when it was a year old and only reached eight feet tall. The second year it hit eleven feet and had 6-7 stalks. I transplanted it to Colorado, where it is about 18 inches across and will probably have a dozen stalks. There is a tall ironweed available from a catalog, which reaches a similar height and shouls also do well in shade.



    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  13. #13
    Cyburbian Tom R's avatar
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    plants

    Quote Originally posted by Gedunker
    But beware the spreading of honeysuckle. As much as I love the fragrance, it will try to cover everything in its path and it is a battle to keep it in line.
    Depends on the kind of honeysuckle. Japanese honeysuckle is very invasive. In shade, some small dogwoods might work.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Queen B's avatar
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    The bad things to me about perennials is that the darn things just look like weeds to me. I can seem to apprecitate the plants.

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    Quote Originally posted by Cardinal
    There are many plants that will do well in shade. Like Gedunker said, stay away from the honeysuckle. It is an invasive plant in many parts of the country. Your best bet is usually to go native. Clethra (Summersweet) is a very showy and fragrant one. Most of the dogwoods do well in shade. Viburnum is another good choice.

    You might also consider garden plants. I put together a very tall and lush garden in one particularly shady corner of my old house. It included ferns, phlox, columbine, yellow coneflower, spotted jewelweed, wild ginseng, campanula, cupplant, and a couple others I do not remember. The cupplant is especially interesting. It will reach 12 feet (3 meters), has yellow flowers, and has leaves that form cups to catch water. The birds then come to the plant to drink.

    Here are a few pics.





    The cupplant when it was a year old and only reached eight feet tall. The second year it hit eleven feet and had 6-7 stalks. I transplanted it to Colorado, where it is about 18 inches across and will probably have a dozen stalks. There is a tall ironweed available from a catalog, which reaches a similar height and shouls also do well in shade.



    Those areas look great, exactly what I need along the back of my yard...I can't tell from the pic, what are the purple flower bushes???

  16. #16
    Gunfighter Mastiff's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Jaxspra
    I got a question for all you gardeners...the entire back end of my lot is ALL shade, nothing grows up there except hostas (and the lilac bush but it gets sun in the spring and early morning because of where I placed it...I want some really pretty large-ish bushes (preferably flowering) to plant along the rear fence line, the forsythia I planted is long gone, so are a bunch of other plants I tried...any suggestions??? it is ALL shade...thanks for any info
    UM has a webpage just for you!

    http://muextension.missouri.edu/xplo...ort/g06911.htm
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  17. #17
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Jaxspra
    Those areas look great, exactly what I need along the back of my yard...I can't tell from the pic, what are the purple flower bushes???
    Those are the phlox. I relocated them from the yard of a house the city was tearing down.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  18. #18
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Cardinal
    Those are the phlox. I relocated them from the yard of a house the city was tearing down.
    You relocated a star trek alien doctor to your HOUSE?

  19. #19
    Cyburbian boilerplater's avatar
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    I was under the impression that Maister was referring to the shrub-type honeysuckles and not the vines. Japanese honeysuckle is the invasive one getting into much of the Eastern Deciduous Forest.

    If you have moist yet well-drained conditions you could grow Rhododendron, azaleas, Mountain Laurel, Leucothoe, American holly...but dry shade is the really tough situation. English Ivy can handle it, but that can get invasive. Siberian carpet cypress, Microbiota desucatta handles it OK.

  20. #20
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Queen B
    Thanks MZ for reminding me that my Aloe plant is turned upside down on my porch. The wind blew it off the other day.

    My suggestion on transplanting would be that they will take alot of abuse. I would
    Suggest digging up what you want and sticking dirt and all in a plastic grocery bag. The plastic bag will hold iin some of the moisture. Then I would break them apart when you are ready to pot them.
    Something along those lines might work for me.

    I tried to take a picture but the battery on my camera is nearly dead and I got Nuthin'. Sigh. Maybe tomorrow, after the battery recharges.

    EDIT: Here is a photoshopped version of the Nuthin' that got -- it looks completely black in the thumbnail and this is the best I could do:

  21. #21
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Okay, I think this is a fairly good picture:

    Note that one is practically a TREE. That one may not be very viable for transport.

  22. #22
    MZ, just get a bigger truck. That and duct tape will solve anything!! AS to landscaping around the castle, around mine is good old K31 Kentucky fescue occasionaly mowed. A little further from the house is either woods or fields, this year with corn. July or early August I'l toll the corn field for fresh produce!! At least your plants are thriving, my cat doesn't allow plants in the house. They are considered appetizers.

  23. #23
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by nighthawk1959
    MZ, just get a bigger truck. That and duct tape will solve anything!!
    Note to self: Add "duct tape" to my shopping list.






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