001 – Deer Fence

Deer Fence, Fall Garden, healthy herbs, African blue basil, banana peppers, okra, tomatoes, watermelons, green beans – 10/15/09

Listen – 22:00

Show Notes:

Longleaf Breeze

McGregor Fence Co. – Deer Fence

Grand Hotel at Point Clear

Lee’s post about our stay at the air conditioning at the Grand Hotel

Blog post about African blue basil

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Join us at the (online) Longleaf Breeze Social

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Raw Transcript:

yeah that fall Garden made sense 2 weeks ago and I guess it still doesn’t make sense but now we planted it and the deer hungry and they’re pretty much laying waste to the collars and we assume they will lay waste to everything else we planted in the fall Garden so we don’t have any choice now we have got to get that deer fence in now

 

welcome to Longleaf Breeze beginners learning subsistence farming using three simple principles approaching but never reaching subsistence it’s got to be fun while we’re doing it and we don’t make all the statements and now lie and Amanda Borden thanks Adrian and thank you all for joining us on our podcast today we have been talking about putting up a deer pants for some time now and putting it off putting it off doing research must have the time to see what would be the best option for this weather it should be a metal fence or some sort of, I guess it’s a pollock what’s the fence or whether or not we should go with electric fence but we pretty much have decided on a metal covered with metal hexagram fence right about the metal hexagram as we understand it is one it’s stronger it’s up some

 

metal fence not a plastic one and then it’s coated with this black plastic coating so that’s one advantage of it

 

the another Advantage is that it’s supposed to last 30 years rather than 10 or 15 years which me know when you’re 55 and 56 as we are 30 years pretty much takes care of things when the next deer fence is going to be installed by our children or grandchildren and finally it has this one inch mesh which we think is small enough to keep the Little Critters out as well as the deer so we’re talkin about 1 fence fabric that takes care of the deer and the rabbit all at one time and that’s really important because we’re pretty sure that some of the Collard lost this year has been I just see the marks out of it so I’m pretty sure that you know we are beginning Farmers learning to do this so we’re not really sure we have had rabbits in our Suburban home that we are leaving soon and I know what that

 

damage looks like so I’m pretty sure we’ve got rabbits probably as well as deer but this past weekend we were down we saw evidence that something large had been in the garden because there was a stick that we stick app and that we used to connect some climbing french green beans Joe steak so they can have something to climb on. They’re there on Sunday and something had broken the stick in half so I think we’re dealing with something a little larger than a rabbit

 

but anyway and another thing that we noticed this past weekend we went to the farm was our herb garden we still have a few herbs will probably talk more about that later but we were coming from having seen some really lovely herbs at Point Clear it is specifically at the Grand Hotel in Point Clear Alabama sort of makes you salivate at when you are a farmer looking at that course it doesn’t hurt that they have this Army of gnomes taking care of all of their plants but they sure are taking good care of their our garden planted some fennel earlier and if actually planted some new fennel we had some rather large caterpillars attack the fennel couple of weeks ago and pretty much laid waste to it and it’s beginning to get some foliage back but that foliage is sort of a brown color

 

gorgeous green penalized this the way it supposed to look so excited pictures of The Gorgeous green stuff at Grand hotel as well as our less than gorgeous stuff at Long Lake Breeze and will put them both up on the show notes page so you can see the difference but we had a good time and looked around got some ideas for a run planting and of course came back to see what had happened at the farm over the past few days when we were were not there the wildflowers had grown that was one thing that I was really pleased about that Cosmos you plant Cosmos right up by the apartment and it has this wonderful Southern Exposure wall and I forgotten where I read this probably somewhere in little houses but the idea is that if you have a walleye know it was in the gayest Garden if you have a wall with Southern Exposure that gets the sun you create this little microclimate that’s one

 

for two zones to the south of you and that’s exactly what we apparently have done for your little for your Cosmos

 

what was fascinating as you planted them in the spring or early summer I guess and then the

 

they did well and then they sort of went dormant for a while during the heat of the summer and here we are in mid-october and they have rejuvenated themselves they’re blooming and now they’re there in Spades and the nice thing about them is that they are attracting all kinds of bees and other buzzing creatures who of course their pollinators they’re the good guys that we want on the farm so we have those we also have our Lantana seems to be attracting even more bees more so than butterflies an hour earlier in the summer they were it was a butterfly Haven and now I guess because of the time of year we’re seeing more of the pollinators there so the Wildflower Garden is going great guns as well and actually noticed us some of the knockout roses had some new blooms

 

you’re not interested as you would think that they would have slowed down now but I agree with you they are blooming in you and I enjoy having them for aesthetic appeal as well as the fact that I’ve actually spotted a hummingbird or two out there right now hanging around the the rose bush is so I think this is a good we want to keep this wild flower garden going and gets kicked blooming things in there that I walked to remind you that when you put that flower garden in I think I whined about it because I was really from one thing to focus on the food crops and I thought the the flower garden was sort of a

 

Petit frivolity we just speak with we didn’t need to be distracted by worrying about silly old flowers but your wisdom was was right on On Target because that those flowers have been a great way to attract those pollinators and if they have stayed happy there, I mostly bought those because they were supposed to be tolerant of heat and don’t necessarily that don’t necessarily have to have really rich soil and of course we don’t although we had put the topsoil in the in the bed but they just sort of petered out and not done too well but we started out with the actually a couple of gift plants my friends have given me and one was that knockout rose and it’s done well as we Center gardenia gardenia for sometime it’s a nice healthy plant but and the lantana is

 

and I certainly I’m a big believer in Lantana that has grown and attracted so many helpful pollinators and butterflies that will continue to do that every year but anyway I said I’d like to see it and I do have one more about there I’d like to see some more of those kind of mixing it up but the oregano that I put in that bed has gone Great Gun you’re right and I was just as happy as it can be there this season you are speaking of the African blue basil this is a plant that we got from grow Alabama we think back in May or June to Alabama which is rcsai community supported agriculture normally they were providing us just food but for whatever reason they included a small African blue basil in

 

box and it was healthy when we got it but by the time we got it in the ground it looked kind of pitiful actually here in Birmingham and it’s sort of what kind of worried about the thing that you had good reason to be terrible when we got it in the ground and I sort of thought it was going to die and many times during the time that has intervened I have wished that it had died and I should mention that did not go into the ornamental flower bed we put that right in the herb garden right in the heart of it down the hill or what I should take a moment and tell you why I am so negative about the African blue basil it has a very pungent taste the Sweet Basil is delightful mean it it’s sweet basil really helps perk up whole lot of vegetables that sort of thing salads

 

pair with Atwood Sweet Basil in but that African blue basil is more reminiscent of licorice its up it’s an unpleasant sweet taste at least to me and as a result I’ve been on the warpath about the African blue basil and I was kind of in a whining about it didn’t like it wanted to cut it down but you wouldn’t let me and now I’m really glad you wouldn’t let me because that’s what we found this weekend when we went down is that the several of the flowers pollinators have looked to for sustenance have faded here in the fall but the African blue basil still going strong at one point it is belly button high now and when you walk out to the African blue basil and just stop and look at it it is literally alive with these

 

if healthy happy pollinators I end and you put something on those the song there’s a post on the blog I love African blue basil and it has a brief brief brief little video of the the bees swarming around in the plant so I invite you to take a look at that I’ll try to click a link to it on the show notes page the remnants of the spring and summer planting go to still producing a little bit in the garden okra is now you have to reach up to get to the very top so when you are harvesting the okra I notice you’re pulling that stock down so you can get it to the point where you can get at it with your snaps that’s right and the banana peppers are just going bananas been going strong since the time they came up

 

is the banana peppers probably the closest thing we have to a production plant they just never quit you put so many well I bought a flat of banana peppers and one or two with the plants didn’t look that healthy but boy they have just enjoyed our soil and our conditions there are one of the few plants that are actually in a raised bed and I don’t know whether that there’s something about the raised bed that has helped on that we should try again I’m in favor of replicating everything we can about those about the situation that had cuz they have been terrific doing well for a while though the eggplants were the ones that attracted dear we had we had to pick them up earlier than we should have

 

we’ve ended up eating little bitty eggplants is that neither of us was willing to leave an eggplant on the plant long enough to mature cuz we figured if we did then it be gone when we came back how we kept finding teeth marks in the exterior of them so we we went ahead and it in Harvest of them but right now they’re petered out or they’re gone for the season I think I’ll follow the eggplant is still healthy but we haven’t had any fruit from the eggplant in quite some time and the one that still seems to be producing are the Suite 100 those little grape tomatoes if you remember they were the first ones to begin bearing and now they’re the last ones the better boys and the mountain Pride have basically shut down right and for that reason I believe it the next time we go down there we should just cut all that that the tomatoes except for the Suite 100

 

the ground and just I guess let the root stay in the ground were thinking but that’s what we’re talking about doing in the idea of is from the garden Gordon garden organically people you do not do not do not do not want bare soil so we’re trying to keep everything to do everything we can to keep from having bare soil so what we’ll do is snip off those tomatoes and then probably distribute them around wherever we see bare soil just distribute those the carcasses of the tomato plants so that the Little Critters can come up and eat that break take it back down into the soil by that’s pretty much what we did with the squash Vines after they died that worked out well and there is no visible sign of those squash bondsman they are just they’re gone and I guess the other the other Rob cropped it’s worth mentioning or are watermelons we’ve actually and Eva cantaloupes as well the Watermelons are the small round variety they do have

 

but that also is a a fruit that’s had a few teeth marks in this in the Rind but luckily they have really thick Ryan so we’ve been harvesting a couple of those and and even if we got them a little earlier than we probably should have the pretty sweet so we’ll continue to enjoy watermelon we’ve got four or five watermelon still growing small ones which I don’t know what happens when the weather turns cold it could be that that’ll be the end of the cantaloupe that I plan to go to the daughter and her boyfriend Kenny are due here Tuesday and you need to know that Adrian is our announcer so when we talked about thank you Adrian and get us out of here Adrienne and it’s Adrian Lee Borden our daughter who lives in California

 

are the program as well as a daughter will enjoy having some watermelon and the other thing I was going to mention is the cantaloupe we don’t know that any of that will be ready by the the during their stay here but the cantaloupe has a bit of a story that we mention grow Alabama earlier will we receive some cantaloupe from Grove Alabama back in the spring and it was the sweetest caliper some of the best I’ve ever had and so we took the seeds and on the very last day that I possibly was supposed to do this that is there supposed to be planted in June I on June 30th about 5 p.m. I was out there but I don’t know if cantaloupe seeds but the plant just took off taking over the holes of Southeast corner of the garden unfortunately deer and or rabbits are preying on the fruit so we have a few cantaloupe

 

first raw spinach some kale some mustard

 

add brussel sprouts and carrots and parsnips and chives and some other herbs as well and we’re capturing all of this data on our database this is the Longleaf be a breeze database and I can I talk just a little bit about what we’re doing with that we don’t really remember when she can tell we don’t remember exactly when we planted things in the summer or the spring and it’s not good that we can’t remember we should have a better recollection of that so what we’ve resolved to do with this database is from now on we want to keep a careful record of

 

when we plant each thing where we got it and then record the results we get and our hope is that we will by doing that we will learn what works and what doesn’t what we’re doing this weird is that we are making that database we are maintaining it online so it’s available to the world so we invite you to follow the database if you wish and find out what we’re doing and how it’s working out I will include a link to the database on the show notes page so that you can get there I thought it was important to indicate the variety of each type of produce as well as the seed company because we are trying actively to avoid using any seed that’s connected with Monsanto which is harder at which is harder than it sounds it’s very disturbing to see how many companies have been quietly taking over

 

buy one giant Corporation so we avoid buying anything that comes from Monsanto if we find out about it if you’d like more information about that story it’s not just that we’re trying to avoid part of being part of a monopoly but they are genetically modifying seeds and making them so that they’re not fertile I supposed to use the next year’s systematically removing from circulation heirloom seeds that people can save and reuse type of seed were using and we’d love to hear from you about your results but the seeds we didn’t get a chance to talk about the grass so I guess that’ll happen next week we’ll have a conversation about that next week galon you should clarify

 

and work in a place that’s incredibly hilly so we’re trying to address that and we will be having a lot to say about that in the coming weeks so we’ll look forward to visiting with you next week get us out of here Adrienne you’ve been listening to Longleaf Breeze with me and Amanda Borden we’d love to hear from you you can call the farm at 334-625-8682 send email to letters at Longleaf breeze.com or you can send us honest-to-goodness mail at PO Box 78044 6 Tallassee Alabama 36078 to browse our archives to learn more about the farm in about being Amanda and a talk with other listeners visit us at Longleaf breeze.com

 

thanks for listening see you next week

 

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