Wednesday, April 09, 2014

More Gardening

So I ended up with insomnia last night. I used to have insomnia nearly every night, but I learned to overcome it so it's rare I don't sleep at night these, nights.

But last night, I didn't feel good. Honestly, I felt hideous. Cramping and achy. When my tummy hurts, I eat and eat, which only makes it hurt more, I think. I felt bad, and I was mad, and upset about having to mess with the taxes, and I got to thinking about our finances, and all the horrible, very bad financial mistakes I've made over the years. All the years J has worked to earn it, and I spent/blew/wasted most of it.

Still do, truth be told. I've never called our mortgage companies to try to get the interest rates lowered, so we have the same rates as, like, 14-15 years ago, when others tell me they are paying lower rates now, since the banking/housing/economy crisis all went down.

I just don't have any idea about finances, mortgages, rates, any of it. I fear messing up even worse than I already have. I feel like if I just leave it alone, and work to get out of the mess, and not get into it again.
But then last night I was thinking how much we're paying in interest, we could maybe be paying less and getting out of the mess a lot sooner.
All night, it seems, I waited for morning, so I could call the company(ies) and talk to them.

But then I dozed off about 5:30am, got up around 7am to open the door for Ryan coming in from work and take a couple of ibuprofen, then passed back out until about noon.
When I got up again, I didn't want to mess with any of the household "business" - taxes, interest rates, bill paying, nothing.

So I put in a load of laundry and went out to plant tomatoes.

I came by a package of Jiffy Pots for free, so I used those to transplant more of my Beefsteak tomato plants, plus 4 styrofoam cups when I ran out of the pots.

All told, I have 35 Beefsteak tomato plants potted.
Not all of them sprouted, and some of these probably won't survive Transplant Trauma, but if nothing catastrophic happens, I should have a good few tomato plants to put in the garden when it's time.

As I was sitting there working on my transplanting, I heard a buzzing near my ear and looked up to see a Bee and a Spider on of the of the cups from yesterdays transplanting, that I had sitting out on top of the garbage can getting some sun.

When I first saw them, the Spider was over near the Bee, and looked like it was poking at it. The Bee poked back at the Spider, and either it or me reaching for my camera scared the Spider and it left.

The Bee appeared to be hugging my plant name tag and either stinging, or humping the side of the cup? Not sure, at any rate, it didn't seem to be interested in the tomato plant.

After that, I needed to transplant my Black Russian tomatoes into something larger, hopefully giving them some growing room to grow a bit bigger/stronger before I plant them out in the yard in the next couple of weeks.

I didn't have enough styrofoam cups left, and I wasn't going to buy anymore. I almost broke down and just made some more of the newspaper pots, but I was too worried they/I would kill the plants again.

I may end up killing them again anyway, but the idea I finally came up with, I call Hugelkultur v2.0.

I had an empty 5-gallon bucket that I thought would work pretty good for planting the tomatoes into to allow them some room to grow before I transplant them in the garden within the next couple of weeks.
If I was planning to raise a tomato plant in a bucket, there would only be room for one, but I just want mine to grow a little bit bigger/stronger, then I'll plant them in the garden to do their growing.

My considerations were, one thing, I didn't want to use so much of my potting soil filling the bucket, and also, I didn't want to drill holes in the bucket for drainage.

I had read about putting rocks or pine cones or plastic drinking bottles in the bottom of flower pots to take up some space so you need as much soil, so it occurred to me that I could do the same with sticks.
I wouldn't need to use as much soil, and any excess water will drain down into the sticks and not keep the soil too wet.

It worked out really good - so far.  I filled the bucket about 3/4 full with sticks I picked up from around the yard, then it didn't take very much potting soil at all to fill the rest of the bucket.

Crossing our fingers that it works and they grow...but not so much that I have trouble getting them loose when it's time to move them into the garden.

(This isn't technically Hugelkultur because - well, it's not a mound, or hill - or because I won't leave the soil/sticks in the bucket long-term to break down into new soil. Which it probably couldn't anyway, since it's in a plastic bucket, and worms and other bugs and stuff can't get in to process it. When I get done with the tomatoes, I'll probably dump the whole thing in one of the other Hugelkultur beds or something.)

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