The Home Ownership Thread

Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by Douglas, Jan 31, 2012.

  1. texas_jack

    texas_jack Senior member

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  2. Ataturk

    Ataturk Senior member

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    About half of mine are heirlooms -- heirloom really just means open-pollinated, that the plant was produced by one like it and will produce offspring that are true to it. They come in so many different shapes and sizes because they're inbred monstrosities, not because there's anything special about heirloom plants. They have inferior disease resistance and vitality because there are some traits you can't reliably get without crossing two different plants. An analogy would be something like light brown eyes in humans. Pretty much everybody who has them has the recessive trait for blue eyes, meaning that if two of them get together, only half their kids will have light brown eyes; a quarter will be blue and a quarter darker brown. (Actually eye color is more complicated than that, but it's meant to be an illustration not a literal example).

    That being said "heirloom" tomatoes often taste different, or better, for a variety of reasons. One is that they have some archaic features that were bred out of commercial tomatoes that do make them taste better (thinner skins, green shoulders, etc.). They're often ripened mostly on the vine while commercial tomatoes are picked green and ripened with chemicals. That helps. Not refrigerated -- that's a big deal. A big thing is also that they're often grown on plants that are stressed -- by disease, malnutrition, drought. Believe it or not a lot of people think that makes tomatoes taste better. Maybe it does.

    So all that being said, about half my plants are heirlooms. A couple "Homstead 24," which is just a boring red tomato that does well in the heat, a couple "Cherokee Purple," a "Mr. Stripey." Maybe a few more I'm forgetting.
     


  3. Medwed

    Medwed Senior member

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    How do they taste those tomatoes? I am speculating if they are simply old-fashion hybrid plants then not much differenet from a regular tomatoe, but what about genetically modded? Do they taste anything like fresh tomatoe juice or do they taste like watery substance?

    On slightly different topic: Porcelaine electric switches by Fontini: http://www.portalelectricidad.com/tienda/interruptores-enchufes-c-30.html
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2014


  4. Ataturk

    Ataturk Senior member

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    There are not, as far as I know, any genetically modified tomatoes in circulation.

    The taste does vary between the various types, though not dramatically. Some are more acidic, some sweeter, some taste kind of salty. There are different textures and slightly different smells. I'm not a connoisseur so I'm sure others can do a better job describing it.

    One thing I have noticed, though, is that most people -- even the ones who enjoy variety -- prefer traditional red, acidic tomatoes. That's why I've got a mix (another reason is that the best red hybrids mature faster, staggering production). There's a lot of improvement from the garden over the store, for the various reasons I touched on above.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2014


  5. Joffrey

    Joffrey Senior member

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    Spent a couple of hours saturday doing some weeding for my parents - holy shit forgot how much work that could be. Any recommendations for plants to use as ground cover to discourage more weeds? COnsidering ground ivy, sedum angelina, and creeping thyme. Will probably use two out of the three depending on the area.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2014


  6. Michigan Planner

    Michigan Planner Senior member

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    I don't like ground ivy because, depending on the type, it can grow pretty low and start taking over the actual grass or choking out desirable perennials you might have. However, if it's a heavily shaded area and you don't have much grass or flowers to begin with, the ivy can work pretty well.

    I think it's considered an invasive species in some areas but I use "winter creeper" and "snow on the mountain" in areas around trees and in a couple of beds. They can tolerate pretty harsh conditions and grow tall enough that you can still have a pretty clear delineation between the lawn and the beds. I've found that they are also easier to control than most ground ivy so that they won't choke out perennials, hosta, azaleas...

    Not exactly a ground cover but another option are daylilies. There are tons of different varieties but I've found the orange ones (I have no clue what their proper name is) spread pretty quickly if it's a nice sunny spot, don't require a lot of watering, keep blooming throughout most of the summer, and grow thick enough to stop most weeds and look nice and green even when not blooming. You may want to clear away the dead stuff each fall or spring though so the bed looks a bit neater.

    [​IMG]
    Not my photo, but this is the variety I mean.
     


  7. brokencycle

    brokencycle Senior member

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    Ground ivy never goes away. I have to kill that shit every year. I had it choke out some evergreen shrubs. I killed my entire yard with kill all vegetation stuff, but those ivy still keep coming back 4 years later.

    Daylillys will multiply faster than rabbits if you let them, but they won't typically murder your other plants.
     


  8. imatlas

    imatlas Senior member

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  9. Ataturk

    Ataturk Senior member

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    [​IMG]
    "Lemon Boy" (hybrid) and "Cherokee Purple" (heirloom).

    The Lemon Boy is more orange than it should be, I think. Not sure why.
     


  10. Ataturk

    Ataturk Senior member

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    Is that directed at me, the folks who advocate "natural" weed killers, or just a present sense impression?
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2014


  11. imatlas

    imatlas Senior member

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    Directed at the idiot who came up with that turd of a logical fallacy.
     


  12. Ataturk

    Ataturk Senior member

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    I hate to keep pressing you, but, you know, there's a lot of arguments in the post. Which is the fallacy?
     


  13. Joffrey

    Joffrey Senior member

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    Thanks for the responses. It's not on the lawn actually. It's in a large garden bed that is elevated and blocked by bricks from the lawn grass. It is not presently populated with other plants (apart from an herb garden set off to the side). So I think the only issue would be periodic edging to keep the plant from getting onto the lawn.



     


  14. Ataturk

    Ataturk Senior member

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    The container experiment is still going well, though I have been getting drought stress and what appears to be nutrient deficiency. So I laid down $20 for a second irrigation controller that can do 8 starts per day for the drippers. For the nutrients apparently what the cool kids do is get a fertilizer injector for the drip system to continuously feed liquid fertilizer [since granules are dependent on top watering to release fertilizer]. The good injectors ones will set you back $250+ [and of course water-soluble or liquid fertilizer is more expensive].
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2014


  15. RedLantern

    RedLantern Senior member

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    things rolling a bit here at Casa RL.

    Last of the front-of-the-house windows going in as I type.
    Living/Dining paint turned out well! - still some trim work to do.
    Mulched garden beds and continuing to plant things out front.
    Built a 8' x16' x18" raised bed for vegetables - just got the veggies in over the weekend. I was not looking forward to shoveling the 7 yards of dirt to fill the planter, but I manged to talk the work crew (they are tearing up the street in front of my house) to use the front end loader and make short work of it!

    Just ordered ceiling fans for living room and bedroom - will have ceiling fans installed as well as recessed lighting for the living room in the next couple weeks.
    Still need to buy a washer/dryer set for the newly plumbed upstairs laundry room.
     


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