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Click on a thumbnail picture below to see the full size version. 25 Entries.
Wednesday, January 15 View Page
Day 45. 1291.5Pantano19 Yeah, it’s small and slow growing. It’s scrawny, May even utter puny. But, heck, it’s a window sill in the frickin middle of January in Pennsylvania, normally a time the conversation is at a low point. Let’s never let that happen. What’s the chance of keeping this guy slowly growing till the green house can take over in March? Imagine a pollination on April 15th!
Wednesday, January 29 View Page
Day 29. Getting too big for the window sill. (above was day 15, not 45)
Wednesday, February 12 View Page
Day 42 of a long winter. Gotta keep occupied. Weather just too lousy for skiing. 40 deg with warm rain every other day.
Thursday, February 20 View Page
Day 50 – 4 ˝ ft. multiple flower buds. What a riot to get a bloom on this thing in the family room. Christmas poinsettias hangin’ in there. They do great outdoors for the summer if I can get a few through the winter indoors. Beautiful deep green leaves.
Sunday, March 1 View Page
Day 50 – 5’ was away this week and set house temp to 60. Probably stunted growth. Put a greenhouse heating pad under pot. 2 flowers started. Leaves much bigger. Why am I doing this?
Sunday, March 8 View Page
Here we go again. El Cheapo green house set up -FAR easier than last year. I left the frame up all winter here, and the plastic slid right into place. Zip tied all around, staked along the bottom pipes and used corner stays. I’m not gonna find It in the cornfield again THIS year! It’s up 2 weeks earlier than last year. Really warm weather lately and early spring. Flowers up, tree buds swollen, few trees in bloom. This just ain’t natural. Will start sifting through my seeds. Have some really good ones this year, including the 1613McCracken that grew my 1291 last year.
Saturday, March 14 View Page
ain’t she pretty?
Thursday, March 19 View Page
Quarantine options – grow a 7 ft vine in the living room
Friday, April 3 View Page
Day 71. Made the turn at the 8 ft ceiling and growing along the lamp chain. Not bad for in the house on a heating pad in front of a west facing bay window. Gotta look at something other than the TV.
Friday, April 10 View Page
HERE WE GO 2020 – A week later than 2019 – spent the last week filling out bank applications for the Small Business Disaster Relief loans and grants – yes took a week, and that's AFTER getting thrown out of 4 large banks ‘cause we weren’t good enough – screw ‘em. Went with our small local bank and got an approved large LOC and they submitted the PPP for us. Hope report next year at this time that my wife’s swim school is still in business – maybe even thriving again. 1st team – Last year 1st team made it to the finals – 1501.5 Wagner ’17 produced a nice crop of 200-300 pounders to put outside the swim school and the 1613.5 McCracken’17 pinched a 8th place at the PAGPGA Weigh off in Altoona at 1291.5. #1 was Dan Wagner with a 1780, whose seed has made it to the first team here this year. 1780 will be matched with the 1797 Checkov – both set in damp paper towel in a baggy today after filing the edge down to the tissue – never failed to germinate a giant pumpkin see doing this. Plan – First Team 1780 Wagner – 1810 Werner x 1501 VanderWielen Today 1797 Checkon – 2036 Glasser x 1821 Checkhon 2nd Team 1613 McCracken – 2145 McMullen ’15 x self 4/15 1501 Wagner 1317 Clemetz x 1148 Wagner 3rd team 1684 Hazeltine – 1826 Wolf x 1706 Kurlich 4/20 Runner up if needed – 1989 Stelts ’19 – 1412 Hazeltine x 2469 Daletas if all else fails 4/24 That will cover all circumstances of all possible calamities - deer, freeze, clutz handing the produce.
Friday, April 10 View Page
File the edge down to a visible fine line of the tissue inside the husk and put in a wet paper towel in a zipped baggy for 24 hours and then set in growing mixture at 45 deg angle 2” deep. Never fails to germinate – unless ya started with a dead seed.
Saturday, April 11 View Page
Added amendments today – sprayed gallon of Borax, acidifier with S04 and S (pH 7.2), Potash, 10-10-10, mycorrhizae, 4 cu ft vermiculite.
Saturday, April 11 View Page
Shallow tilled to get everything started – will do a deeper till when I have time. Will get the ground cables out of the cellar and start the 2 hills this week if the weather cooperates – I have 1 bag of dry sterile mushroom soil left, Miracle Grow potting media, some additional 10-10-10 and kelp meal, and, of course, mycorrhizae. Later will bring El Cheapo green house from the lawn where I was practicing the thermostat, heaters, 24 hr temp recorder (Elitech GSP-6). Surprises not welcome the first cold night after setting out our prized first team in a couple of weeks. ? out of quarantine by then ? – not likely
Monday, April 13 View Page
Cables in
Wednesday, April 15 View Page
Survived 40 mph winds, 50 mph winds, but not 60 mph. Went on a 400’ ride until stopped by my neighbor’s tree line – total loss. Picked up the equipment all over the lawn – it was all set to accept my tomato plants this week and pumpkin seedling next week. Sent for another – price went up from$114 to $140 – nuts. Day 4 since started 2 seeds No action yet.
Thursday, April 16 View Page
Photo didn't accompany the blow away note -
Thursday, April 16 View Page
Photo didn't accompany the blow away note -
Sunday, April 19 View Page
Look familiar? – well it’s a new one, just like the one that blew away – although several significant improvements and a few steps back – improved – the unrippable (and it is) covering is easily large enough to fit over the frame without stretching; the pipes are labeled and have square holes accepting square lock flat head screws with wing nuts. MUCH better directions. The zipper is disappointing – the blow away had an overly large plastic zipper – this one less robust. Thought I could do this in an hour, but the screw holes aren’t perfectly located so that as you get more pipes positioned and locked, tiny fractions of displacement of inserted pipe screw holes make it virtually impossible to get it to line up to pass the screw. One corner assembly took 15 aggravating minutes to get 1 screw to pass – required a hammer. Finally finished – 2 ˝ hr. This one is tied down zip tied to stakes at the corners and 2 more on each side, corner staked ropes, and for good measure a separately staked rope angled over the top.
Tuesday, April 21 View Page
Gave up on 1st started 1780 Wagner and 1797 Checkon – no action Restarted my other 1780 Wagner and 2 of my 4 1613’s McCrackens 3 days ago and today started my last 1652 Wagner and a 1686 Steltz. Not nervous yet.
Friday, May 1 View Page
(Out of order - forgot to submit the May 1 entry) El Cheapo # 2 lasted 12 days. Appropriate constructive review furnished to Amazon sellers’ listing. Ordered # 3
Monday, May 4 View Page
Gave up on my 2nd attempt on the 1780 Wagner - started my last 2 seeds of the 1780 Gave up on the 1652 Wagner and replaced with the 1684 Hazeltine ‘18
Saturday, May 9 View Page
El Cheapo #3 (so far I have $374 in these “value” structures) This one had the same construction as the first, with much more substantial pipes, a better fitting cover, better screw and nut hardware and good zipper. They must have read my review regarding the flimsiness of #2. Went up easier than the previous 2, just in time for 35 mph winds with gusts predicted of 50 later this evening. Never to worry. And my last 1780 sprouted ! Fired up all the hardware in the tent - now 3 heaters, commercial thermostat and Elitech temperature recorder. Plugged in ground cables (ground 57 deg to start). Now we're cookin' I think the season has turned in my favor.
Friday, May 15 View Page
FINALLY in the ground – 1686 Steltz out of 1412 Hazeltine x 2464 Deletas(day18 since sprouting) – The Team Leader; 1613 McCracken (22 days since sprouting) and reliable ole 1501.5 McCracken – day 15 - (orange) planted in the opposite direction (same ground as last year) My last 1780 Wagner crumped soon after made a showing. 0 for 3 on that seed. Still have a 1613 McCrack day 22 and 1684 Hazeltine sprout in reserve. AN ENTIRE MONTH BEHIND 2019 ! We had a much warmer May last year.
Friday, May 15 View Page
This, my Giant Pumpkin Growing Friends, is a real Native American Chestnut seedling, supplied as a germinated seed from NY Chapter of the Amer Chestnut Foundation, of which I am a member ($40 membership entitles you to next year‘s germinated seed distribution). This is not a blight resistant seed – that is, does not tolerate the oxalic acid secreted by the American Chestnut blight fungus and will wither and die sometime during first 2-15 years of life. But the hope is that enough of these seedlings can be planted in small coves by Foundation members and are ready for the transgenic blight resistant trees nearing release next year. Millions of these young native American Chestnut trees are already growing in back yards, tree farms, public parks, golf courses and research centers around America. The Foundation will supply these resistant seedlings to those who have already started groves to cross pollinate and start the process of natural selection of a blight tolerant American Chestnut tree to repopulate the forests of our country, as was the case a hundred years ago. This once magnificent tree accounted for 25% of the growth in mid-Atlantic and northern hardwood forests and usually the tallest trees, by far, to be seen by those fortunate to gaze across such a canopy. Consider joining a chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation and join the effort to repopulate our forests with this magnificent tree. chestnut@acf.org Just sayin’
Thursday, May 28 View Page
OK – gotta make a decision – does the 1613 get culled today or not? – I'ts gorgeous, has a thick, not split main stem and bulky expansion at first true leaf. A week older than the almost as gorgeous 1686 Stelts (with monster grandpa) – likewise nice untraumatized mainstem. The 1501, growing in the opposite direction is not as robust but healthy. 2 standbys still in pots bring up the rest of the team. Applied first fertilizer wash yesterday – of course, Jack’s 20-20-20. Wish my wife's small business was in such good shape.


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