Rock Gardens forum: General Rock Garden Chat

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Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
Seed Starter Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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Leftwood
Nov 22, 2017 6:19 PM CST
Some might be interested in touring a few Czech rock gardens - click on Jan's link posted here:

http://www.srgc.net/forum/inde...
Name: Bev
Salem OR (Zone 8a)
Sempervivums Container Gardener Foliage Fan Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2014
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webesemps
Nov 22, 2017 11:47 PM CST
Inspirational were the many different kinds of rock gardens shown in that link of Jan's. All the crevice gardens were spectacular and inspiring for small spaces and the garden that didn't forget to place the ID labels was crazy and that vertical wall of plantings was most sturdy! Why was all the green a nicer green than we have here? Unusual were the raised stone troughs and huge they seem. Also liked the raised stone table-like surfaces with the dense foliage of companion plants for off the ground cultivation.
Thanks Rick for providing the link to enable us to see what's going on way over there.
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
Seed Starter Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
Leftwood
Nov 23, 2017 8:40 AM CST
Jan is a master of experience with homemade troughs. Most of the big ones are not real stone:
https://issuu.com/jantholhuijs...

You can see others and other peoples in this thread, too.
http://www.srgc.net/forum/inde...
Name: Mark McDonough
Massachusetts (Zone 5a)
Region: Massachusetts Enjoys or suffers cold winters Garden Procrastinator Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Foliage Fan
Birds Seed Starter Hybridizer Sempervivums
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AntMan01
Feb 2, 2018 9:02 AM CST
Wow, the troughs and mini built-up crevice garden in that online book are amazing. Now that I'm retired and returning to one of my true loves, Sempervivums and other succulents, I'm looking for innovative planting ideas.
Avatar: Jovibarba x nixonii 'Jowan'
Allium 'Millenium' - 2018 Perennial Plant of the Year:
http://www.perennialplant.org/...
https://www.waltersgardens.com...
Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Peonies Lilies Enjoys or suffers cold winters Winter Sowing
Bulbs Region: Canadian Garden Ideas: Master Level Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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CarolineScott
Feb 2, 2018 11:18 AM CST
Thanks Rick for bringing that to our attention.
I am struck by the variety of approaches to rock gardening, and also to the variety of alpine conifers shown.
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Oberon46
Jun 14, 2018 10:06 AM CST
I am looking for small tools to do maintenance on small troughs. We have 30 troughs, some dating back at least 10 years. The early ones are overgrown with plants spreading, volunteers and tiny birch seedlings from the birch trees surrounding (arboreal setting).

Any suggestions?
Name: Bev
Salem OR (Zone 8a)
Sempervivums Container Gardener Foliage Fan Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2014
Image
webesemps
Jun 14, 2018 12:44 PM CST
There are a lot of people doing miniature gardening, small container gardening, vertical frames, etc. I'm sure there are tools for sale for that kind of gardening but for my needs, I find that a good serving or teaspoon is good for shoveling/filling soil in tight/small spaces. A table knife is good for lifting soil, severing small weeds or poking narrow holes for small rooted plants. I do a lot of small container gardening and use dental tools, tweezers and clay-molding tools. One would be surprised at what tools are available in one's kitchen, the craft stores and in the small tool section of a flea market.
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
Seed Starter Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
Leftwood
Jun 14, 2018 7:34 PM CST
A flat head screwdriver can be indispensable, in my opinion. They come in various sizes, so you can choose what might work best for you. A (horse) hoof pick is kinda like screwdriver variant, and you might want to at take a look at that, too. The table knife (butter knife) works really well loosening the soil along the trough sides, especially. Tweezers can be very useful, especial in an arboretum setting when you are not there all the time to catch weeds at their most vulnerable stage. Table forks also have their place. I find dental tools are too flimsy. For me, this causes a spring action that often sends dirt and pebbles flying. A nut pick works much better. Dental tools are very useful dealing with seeds and seed harvest extraction. Sometimes all you need is something stiff the size of a 6 inch crochet or knitting needle, to loosen the soil to pull weeds out. Small scoops found in the store cooking utensil section easily directs the soil where you want it and not where you don't.
Thumb of 2018-06-15/Leftwood/43d45e

Edited for grammar.... yow...
[Last edited by Leftwood - Jun 15, 2018 1:43 PM (+)]
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Name: Bev
Salem OR (Zone 8a)
Sempervivums Container Gardener Foliage Fan Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2014
Image
webesemps
Jun 14, 2018 10:46 PM CST
Rick, wonderful tutorial and photo to say that you can have great tools at hand when you just take the time to look around and that good gardening can still be achieved with simple tools.
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Oberon46
Jun 15, 2018 4:52 PM CST
Just what I was looking for. I will need tweezers to remove all the birch tree seedlings before they develop roots that will disturb other plants. I am afraid if I just cut the seedling at the surface it will simply send up another shoot.
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
Seed Starter Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
Leftwood
Jun 15, 2018 6:20 PM CST
Right. I would never just cut a weed. The toenail scissors are in in the pic for grooming. Something else I missed in the pic if you have liverwort problems: vinegar. Just a little dab'll do ya! Rolling on the floor laughing (for those of us as old as I am Big Grin )

Really though, just touch the liverwort with a finger dipped in vinegar. nodding Doesn't work on moss, though.
Name: Bev
Salem OR (Zone 8a)
Sempervivums Container Gardener Foliage Fan Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2014
Image
webesemps
Jun 15, 2018 6:46 PM CST
Brylcreme (sp?) wasn't it? For us girls, it was Dippity Do...

Back to plants...In some of my container plantings I see aphids and some mealybugs (especially this year) and I used to use cotton swab and little pool of rubbing alcohol and swabbed away. I found a better way to get the little critters...I use tip of my dental tool and dip into wintergreen alcohol and the slight oiliness of the wintergreen, upon touch of the nearest bug on the leaf or junction of stem/leaft easily and holds it onto the tool tip. I then dip it back into the small jar of alcohol and the bug is caught by the liquid. The tip is now ready for the next bug. After the liquid gets saturated with bugs, I pour the contents away and refill with more wintergreen alcohol.
[Last edited by webesemps - Jun 15, 2018 8:48 PM (+)]
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Name: Mark McDonough
Massachusetts (Zone 5a)
Region: Massachusetts Enjoys or suffers cold winters Garden Procrastinator Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Foliage Fan
Birds Seed Starter Hybridizer Sempervivums
Image
AntMan01
Jun 15, 2018 8:20 PM CST
We meet up again left wood (Rick), really like the post & pic of your handy dandy toolkit. I noticed the extreme care taken in aligning the tool in that layout, and of course the two angled ones that I'm sure are placed at some exacting angle ;-) kidding aside, good photo and topic.

Bev, your over here in Rock Gardening too, not just semps. I "subscribed" to shade gardening forum and rock garden forum, but after many week no action I unsubscribed them.
Avatar: Jovibarba x nixonii 'Jowan'
Allium 'Millenium' - 2018 Perennial Plant of the Year:
http://www.perennialplant.org/...
https://www.waltersgardens.com...
Name: Bev
Salem OR (Zone 8a)
Sempervivums Container Gardener Foliage Fan Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2014
Image
webesemps
Jun 15, 2018 8:43 PM CST
AntMan01 said: ...Bev, your over here in Rock Gardening too, not just semps. I "subscribed" to shade gardening forum and rock garden forum, but after many week no action I unsubscribed them.


Mark, a few years ago I had a quasi-rock garden. Not sure if it was a rock garden if one places rocks into a raised bed to simulate a rock garden. Of course that was my foundation for keeping my semps and sedum. These photos tap into good memories.
Thumb of 2018-06-16/webesemps/214058 Thumb of 2018-06-16/webesemps/f21add

Thumb of 2018-06-16/webesemps/424039 Thumb of 2018-06-16/webesemps/7b5e50

Now the semps are in 4 in. pots placed into flats lifted to sun exposure by plastic crates. Not the same but the semps are still the focus.

Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Critters Allowed Region: Arizona Xeriscape Greenhouse Annuals
Cactus and Succulents Bromeliad Adeniums Orchids Tropicals Plumerias
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plantmanager
Jun 15, 2018 8:47 PM CST
I love those old photos, Bev!
Handcrafted Coastal Inspired Art SeaMosaics!
Name: Bev
Salem OR (Zone 8a)
Sempervivums Container Gardener Foliage Fan Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2014
Image
webesemps
Jun 15, 2018 8:51 PM CST
Old but precious memories of what hard work it was to keep those semps going and to see the seasonal changes they all went thru. You know, Karen, those changes that drive a semp collector nuts wondering if that semp is labeled correctly because a few days ago it looked completely different Hilarious!
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Critters Allowed Region: Arizona Xeriscape Greenhouse Annuals
Cactus and Succulents Bromeliad Adeniums Orchids Tropicals Plumerias
Image
plantmanager
Jun 15, 2018 8:59 PM CST
Rolling on the floor laughing Yes, they certainly are changeable. That's what makes them so interesting.
Handcrafted Coastal Inspired Art SeaMosaics!
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
Seed Starter Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
Leftwood
Jun 16, 2018 1:37 PM CST
AntMan01 said:... I noticed the extreme care taken in aligning the tool in that layout, and of course the two angled ones that I'm sure are placed at some exacting angle ;-) kidding aside, good photo and topic.


Indeed! I thought such a pic might be useful in future slide presentations on troughs. Something "not plants"
to keep people interested. I've been known to slip in a Lilium-looking daylily from time to time, with Lilium presentations, too.
Name: Mark McDonough
Massachusetts (Zone 5a)
Region: Massachusetts Enjoys or suffers cold winters Garden Procrastinator Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Foliage Fan
Birds Seed Starter Hybridizer Sempervivums
Image
AntMan01
Jun 16, 2018 6:58 PM CST
Bev, I love all those various shades of green in your old photos. It's amazing the evolution of one's gardening & gardens through the years, I know my garden focus has evolved considerable through the decades; that'd why I'm having fun over in the semp forum, rebuilding a semp collection as I had 30 years ago. A non-gardening acquaintance stopped by my hosts house/nursery today, she saw my trays of about 150 different semps and she went gaga over them, singling out all the ones she liked best. :-)
Avatar: Jovibarba x nixonii 'Jowan'
Allium 'Millenium' - 2018 Perennial Plant of the Year:
http://www.perennialplant.org/...
https://www.waltersgardens.com...
[Last edited by AntMan01 - Jun 17, 2018 6:36 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1738784 (19)
Name: Bev
Salem OR (Zone 8a)
Sempervivums Container Gardener Foliage Fan Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2014
Image
webesemps
Jun 16, 2018 9:27 PM CST
Mark, I'm glad someone can still like something in those old photos. I miss the old bed but not the work that it took to keep it up....the rollers that balled up from too much sun, the summer scorched semps, the constant on and off shade cloth, the sedum that would overrun the bed if I let it, etc.
Yes, when people finally take the time to look at my collection on the balcony, they are amazed at the variety of colors that the semps display. It's not just those "green ones" anymore.

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