Ghetto Grow Bag

Remember the Ghetto Greenhouse?  Introducing…

…the Ghetto Grow Bag.

Remember that one hosta (insert plant of your choice) that your aunt (insert person of your choice) gave you a few years ago?  Well, now it’s grown into a hosta space hog encroaching on the living quarters of its neighbors.

Want to tame that big fella?  Make him stay where you want him to stay? Well, it’s time to divide and conquer. 

But what to do with the offspring…perfectly good little fellas that could find happiness in another home just like Big Pappa.

Here’s the solution:

Weed cloth and your choice of apparatus to tie the “bag” with.  And potting soil, of course, but much less than you’d need if you were transplanting into a bunch of pots.

Simply lay down a square of weed cloth, plop down a few handfuls of soil, pop in your perennial, pull the weed cloth up around the stem of the plant distributing the soil around the roots and tie that baby off.  Now you have portable perennials that can pass their time pleasantly while you ponder what person to pass the plants to.

Here we have happy hostas hanging with their homies.Who’s to know the solid green hosta are simply sitting on top of the soil waiting for a permanent home.

Don’t like the way the plant looks in one location?  Easy peasy.  No digging, no transplant shock, no time spent.  Simply pick it up and put it somewhere else. 

And if you want to step up from the ghetto and move it up to suburbia, you can copy adapt the commercial version of the grow bag

Very reasonably priced, but you do have to order it…and pay shipping…and wait for it to be delivered.

Or…you could pull out the old sewing machine and stitch up a few squares and make you own (which was my original plan).

Remember…you heard it first here.  Ghetto Grow Bags.  Try it, you might like it.

Happy Gardening

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More free goodies.

Every day I try to pop over to the My Good Cents page (under frugal living on the sidebar).  Anything that says free sample gets my attention.  So far I’ve gotten a coupon for a free Kashi frozen dinner, info for free bowling for kids, two $1 $2 printable coupons for any size All 3x and Mighty detergent, free seeds from Campell’s Soup and a free (ahem) intimate raincoat.  Hey, it was free.

Reynolds is giving away a coupon for a roll of their recycled aluminum foil.  I signed up for that.  And just a little while ago, I signed up for a sample of Dunkin Donuts coffee.  They had a blog widget which actually works.  Half the time I can’t get the widgets to work.  So, there it is,  Hope you find it useful.

Today, still at My Good Cents, I read that Home Depot has a buy one get one free seed sale in honor of Earth Day (4-19 to 4-28).  I missed out on the free compact fluorescent bulb.  I stopped by and got lavender seeds, because I don’t have any, and organic cantaloupe, because I’m trying to change my evil ways and buy organic seeds.  Not that I have any more room for anything else on the grow rack, but I started a few of the lavender seeds and tomorrow I’ll plant a few cantaloupe seeds.

Happy Gardening!!!

Campbell’s Soup Free Seeds

I got mine, thanks to a link from My Good Cents…complete with coupon code. 

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Now you get yours.

Campbell's Free Seeds

(Click cute little tomato growing in can to get your free seeds)

Be sure to check out their Get Growing page.  It has some good basic instructions for growing tomatoes.

Happy Gardening!!!!

*The link and code is probably available at My Good Cents, but you’ll have to search for it.

**Offer valid until June 21, 2009 (or while supplies last).  One per househhold.  Good only in the USA, Puerto Rico.  Allow eight weeks for handling and delivery

Purple Cabbage Ph Indicator Test

I had time to try the purple cabbage Ph indicatortest. A new Food 4 Less opened in the neighborhood and they have a real nice vegetable selection. I was talking to my Master Gardener friend, Greogry, about spaghetti squash a little while ago. Coincidentally, the store had the spaghetti squash and the purple cabbage.

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So, the directions said to chop the cabbage leaves and mix it with distilled water and let it sit. I used the food processor to chop it up and used boiled and cooled water. The water was lukewarm when I added it to the food processed cabbage leaves and the water turned purple immediately.

Next you’re supposed to get some vinegar and some of the cabbage solution…04-11-09-5

And mix the two together…

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You do this to test the solution. Mine turned red. So far, so good.

Next you take your soil sample and add some of the solution, mix and let settle…

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The color of the solution gives you an indication of your soil ph.

  • Pink or red = Indicates acidic soil
  • Purple (no change) = neutral ph
  • Blue = indicates alkaline soil
  • Green = Indicates highly alkaline soil

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The soil on the left came from the raised bed that had the leaves sitting in it over the winter. The soil samples had little worms in it and had a plastic cover over it for the past month. (I ended up doing the test twice.) The middle sample came from the middle bed which was lightly mulched over the the winter with leaves. The third sample came from the area where I grow a large leafed hosta. The soil is not raised and is much more compact than that in the raised beds.

I don’t know how well it shows on the picture, but it looks to me like my vegetable beds are alkaline/blue and that the area where no vegetables were grown is very alkaline/green.

I’ll take a little time to see which vegetables grow best in alkaline soil, but at the end of the day (especially since I have so few square feet to work with) my planting decsions, unless I decide to get a real soil test, will be based on things that we like to consume and how they physically look in the garden.

So, there you go. Another low cost way to get something done in the yard.

Happy Gardening!!!!

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