For Many Of Us The Freeze Clean-Up Is Still Underway

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By Jannie Vaught

After many loads of frozen cacti, century plants, and tree damage trimmings it appears to be almost at a finish. I need some time for the garden. But this brings me to a question so many of us have. After the freeze with freeze broken pipes, pumps and wells frozen and for many the loss of electric power, how can we prepare for the future?

What I hear most from neighbors is Wrap All Pipes! And then cover them! We have a list, and it goes like this. All outside pipes now have a shut-off valve for the outside water. And when we can get more insulating wrap we will wrap anew, each pipe, and make sure the faucets have good covers. At the end of the season take off all hoses and drain and store. Wrap the pipes under the sinks inside. No more trickling water. I will make a cover for the kitchen and bathroom faucet to be put on at night. So as not to be part of draining our City Water Tanks, Everyone trickling faucets, possibly 2 to 3 faucets each house in a town can drain our storage as they fill at night. We may need water for the hydrants to function. And having been through severe water restrictions in past years I just can’t let the water go down the drain. Further on the list is under the house pipe inspection and possible wrapping. Also, the outside chicken coops and animal areas need better protection with possible hard insulation that can be put in prior to a freeze. Your list may be very different. Let us not forget this as we go into warm weather. Today is finish weeding the garden and raised beds. The Perpetual Moon Calendar is digging and cultivate, rising vitality until the 16th. Then until the 24 it is Most prolific-for sowing and planting all that produce above ground, peas, beans, cauliflower, cabbage, tomatoes, pumpkins, flowers, etc. and Don’t prune, causes dieback. Take all cuttings. Good for grafting. Using my Vegetable Garden Planting Guide it shows for March, Asian greens. beans, snap and lima, on the 21 we go into Cancer and that is good for vining plants. beets, carrots, canteloupe at the end of the month, corn, eggplant, and Swiss chard, collard greens, cucumbers, cool-season greens, Kohlrabi, lettuce, and mustard greens. Pepper transplants, summer and winter squash mid-month. and turnips through the month. Next month is watermelon.

As we may get more cold temperatures, if you set out transplants especially those tomatoes and peppers you may have frost caps or frost cloth and hoops to cover if need be. Keep your weather eye out for possible changes. This year is a new section for a Three Sisters Garden in a sectioned-off part of the chicken yard. Three Sisters is a Cherokee way. That is Bean, Corn and Squash, the” Three Sisters” planted in mounded sections. Due to Wind Blown downs last year I will be planting Facing the wind areas for us which is mostly North Easterly. When I plant my 3 seeds of corn I will put in a tall wooden stake for tieing back the corn as it has grown. Or you can plant in rows and use The Florida Weave, Every 4 feet place a T-post or strong stake down the row as the corn grows weave strong ties in and out down the row securing to each post. This works very well for staking tomatoes which can have Wind Damage.

We need all the security we can find this is perhaps a very challenging gardening year. Prepare and be ready.

Growing Green With Jannie