The lesson from the experiment are many and a bit painful.
Learning Lessons and other Musings
November 20, 2011
Lesson number one – 3 inch drain pipe is too small – I debated and again the cheap side of me went with the lower cost….guess what. Sometimes more is better …. (I chose the politically correct phrase). The 4 inch pipe is probably a good choice but the more I look at it and work with the 3 inch pipe the 6 inch may be the best choice.
Lesson number two – fill with the planting media as you plant. I filled the 3 inch pipes to the top before the plants arrived and it becomes a challenge to get the plants well seated.
Lesson three – space the holes out in a less dense pattern. I chose a 90 degree orientation with the back side blank. I read an article a couple of months ago where a young lad experimented with spacing solar cells based on plant world configurations – something like Fibonacci numbers – and the results were amazing. So I may play around with real plant world arrangements like – 135° (or 3/8) : eight leaves in three gyres. The Fibonacci sequence would predict 137.5 degrees as an optimum spacing. That would be 8 holes in three rows and then repeat.
Lesson 4 – the holes are probably the right size/diameter but the forstner bit leaves a sharp edge in the hole. Have you heard the joke where the patient says to the doc, “It hurts when I put my finger into the holes in the pipe!” The doc tells him, “The cure is to stop putting your finger in there!” I should have listened to the doc. I shredded the index finger on both hands – so the pain is evenly distributed. I think that helps?
I think I will experiment with the 6 inch pipe this coming spring – I will be”frugal” and rather than build the towers using PVC Tees and Ells, I will use a post hole digger to set the pipe upright. I figure 12-15 inches deep should be sufficient.
The warm weather is helping and hindering. The help – I am still picking green beans and cucumbers… as well as bell peppers, yellow banana peppers, serrano peppers and radishes. I picked all of my green tomatoesover a week ago thinking that November would bring some cool weather – well I should have waited. Is it Global Warming or too “dadgum” politicians spewing hot air????? 82 degrees F today, 28 C for the rest of the world.
Now the bad. I am waiting for my asparagus ferns to respond to the cold, ha ha, and turn brown so I can cut them back. They are still green, still growing and sending up new shoots. So, …… ????????
I love puttering around in the garden an snacking on the fresh crunchy stuff. Fresh green beans today and a couple of sugar snap pea pods… not worth bringing into the house – just right for crunchy chewing in the garden.