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    • September 4, 2020 8:28 PM EDT
    • I need to write down some of the stuff that Nancy told me so I don't forget:

       

      • need to be more aggressive at taming (i.e. cutting back) some of the ground cover that was encroaching on neighboring plants
      • the conifers need to be trimmed once a year, in November.
      • the lemon cypress will need to be trimmed back to about 1 foot less than our target height, picking a new "apex" for the tree and then pruning them to let the trunk show as we did before we planted them in the first place
      • the dwarf alberta spruce didn't grow as much as the lemon cypress. most of the pruning will be to just trim out some of the growth to show the trunk as we did before planting
      • the japanese maples need to be pruned in January when they are dormant. we can use our hands to strip the leaves off the branches if we want earlier, but they should drop all their leaves relatively easily. Nancy did cut back the maple near the (future) sawmill, but the other maples are going to wait. if we start pruning now it will just stimulate growth. waiting for when they are dormant will be better for the plant
      • currently we are watering 15 minutes, twice a week. I've been watering the durango succulents every 2 weeks and that's clearly not enough. going to a good soak once a week and we'll see how that works
      • there are surprisingly few weeds. yay! not by accident: lots of rock and fine fill, ground cover is crowding out the weeds. when weeds show up, drenching them with vinegar kills them pretty handily without causing any evil effects (well, if you inject vinegar, it probably isn't so great). also, I was reasonably diligent early on at picking weeds while the ground cover was getting established, so that was a good (not completely on purpose) thing to have done
      • some of the ground cover has dead stuff underneath. need to cut that out, as it ends up being attractive to snails and other pests. some of the ground cover that has little flowers had grown in too far and covered our nice dry wash, and it was looking shabby (some dead stuff), so Nancy cut that back "hard" (as she said). this is in the Jasper forest near the mine: Sweet Alyssum and Lobelia

       

      I hope I captured it all. I'll add more if it occurs to me.

       

      [edited to add the last ground cover bullet]

       

    • September 4, 2020 8:06 PM EDT
    • Looks good!

       

      Succulents are weird.  I find, like the old hymn,  they "blossom and flourish, like leaves on the tree, then whither and perish" just to irk me!  Same species, same soil, same conditions, and one fires, one drowns, and one does fine.  Sedum?  Forget about it.  We've had some cover our "mountains" only to sizzle away, then reappear in little nooks elsewhere.  Anyway, I thank you for sharing your experiences!  It helps us move from "trial and error" to deliberate planting!

      Eric

    • September 4, 2020 6:57 PM EDT
    • Nancy Norris came by today for a pruning/teaching session. It seems I have not been watering my desert enough. My bad! Also: Nancy has suffered through Covid-19 but has pretty much recovered (some lingering weird side effects). Whew! She recommends strongly against having it.

       

      Here's some photos of the desert town of Durango after Nancy has given it a good makeover:

       

       

      Cheers!

       

    • September 1, 2020 3:09 PM EDT
    • Here is the one we displayed at all our train meets and was on the back of your shirts back in the 80s

      the mascot bug logoclub logo

    • September 1, 2020 9:02 AM EDT
    • That's a pretty rare to see a Praying Mantis, thanks for the photos.

    • August 31, 2020 10:53 PM EDT
    • Not the far side, but good enough!

       

    • August 31, 2020 9:00 PM EDT
    • Jim;

       

      I remember seeing a cartoon once (possibly The Far Side).  Two preying mantis males are sitting at a bar.  A female preying mantis is getting ready to bite the one male's head off.  The other male says, "Dude!!  I think she likes you!"  Dark humor, but still kind of funny.

       

      Best, David Meashey

    • August 31, 2020 2:53 PM EDT
    • Had an interesting visitor in the Jasper forest area today: a praying mantis!

       

       

      About the (scale) size of a Shetland pony. If it sticks around and keeps growing we might have a remake of Them! [link].

       

       

    • May 23, 2020 10:51 AM EDT
    • Pete Lassen said:

      thats photoshopped, the train is arrow straight , but the track is curved !

       

       

       

      LOL I am just kidding , who cares if they are not to scale/guage/size that looks great Vincent!

       

      Not photo shopped, angle at which picture was taken 

    • May 23, 2020 10:28 AM EDT
    • thats photoshopped, the train is arrow straight , but the track is curved !

      LOL I am just kidding , who cares if they are not to scale/guage/size that looks great Vincent!

       

    • May 21, 2020 8:45 PM EDT
    • Sean McGillicuddy said:

      I love this shot ...Vinny who .. 

      Me too Sean even though he's into gnomes as they are over rated these days. Love it !

    • May 21, 2020 9:07 AM EDT
    • I saw the FB posts about y'all restarting.  Glad you did!

      Vincent D'Agostino said:

      It has been a few years but we are back running!

       

    • May 21, 2020 3:16 AM EDT
    • Simply gorgeous.

    • May 20, 2020 4:53 PM EDT
    • Beautiful Vincent!

    • May 20, 2020 8:25 AM EDT
    • dat's purty!............

    • May 20, 2020 6:57 AM EDT
    • I love this shot ...Vinny who .. 

    • May 19, 2020 6:23 PM EDT
    • It has been a few years but we are back running!

    • May 19, 2020 5:35 PM EDT
    • Excuse me for being on topic, but this is as close as I could get to posting my openings.

      BC's Ice Cream Stand is open, as is Golding's Pretzel Hut. Hollywood's Eyetalian Hot Dogs should be open tomorrow.

    • May 18, 2020 5:53 PM EDT
    • Excuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuse me......................