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Author Topic: Northern Permaculture  (Read 28702 times)

ilinda

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #240 on: July 17, 2019, 04:55:04 PM »
The sheer volume of resources you've posted is an indicator of the ever-growing interest in permaculture, organics and things related.  Thanks so much!

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #241 on: July 18, 2019, 11:04:08 AM »
 :)

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #242 on: July 18, 2019, 11:24:21 AM »
Savvy gardeners have been nervously and diligently eyeing their crops for evidence of possible UV-C damage supposedly pouring into the lower atmosphere as a result of a declining magnetosphere. 

What I've noticed here this week was a bit of a surprise:

So far, none of our Northern-bred permaculture crops have had serious issues with the "new" radiation, but my one and only Southern bred crop (in 2 different cultivars) is showing signs of distress after many years of being among the most robust species on our homestead:  the muscadine grapes bred in Georgia, which overwinter easily in our hardiness zone 6, and typically over-summer just as easily, being the Southern crop that they are.

The speed with which the distress began showing up this week has been a concern.  I went out at the beginning of this week and contemplated removing a tree branch from over the extreme right side of the 25' trellis, thinking to get this done in the next several days.  At that time however, I first noticed leaves on the opposite sunny end of the trellis beginning to brown, something that has never happened to the muscadines before.  A mere 48 hours later, we began noticing entire branches of brown leaves, but only on the sunnier left end of the row.

So it occurred to me not to prune that overhanging branch after all, as leaves on the shaded end of the trellis are perfectly green. 

Am ruling out lack of moisture or disease: We've had more than adequate rainfall this summer, but not the deluge of 2018, so water should not be an issue.  The grapevines are also bred to be disease-free.

Realizing that it was not in our best interests to let this continue any longer, we pruned out the brown dead stuff this morning, and then fetched enough fiberglass screen cloth from the hardware store to drape over the entire 25' row, using clips to fasten it loosely to the trellis wire. 

Total cost was under $20 to protect a crop that is much more valuable, being one of the few harvests that we can count on in October.

A new strategy presents itself:
Some amount of sunlight will need to reach the grapevines in order to set and ripen grapes (which are more like large unclustered berries in this species which is "rotundiflora").  It may be that we'll need to shade the row for several weeks post-Solstice, and then remove or roll up the shade cloth by late August or early September in order to ensure cropping by October.

I can't snap a photo right now as a thunderstorm is approaching, but you get the idea.  :)

« Last Edit: July 18, 2019, 12:50:17 PM by R.R. Book »

ilinda

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #243 on: July 18, 2019, 07:55:52 PM »
Good observation and probably conclusion about the uv-c being the culprit, especially since those leaves in the more shaded part are green.

Is there a website you can visit which posts daily UV-C levels?

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #244 on: July 19, 2019, 06:21:10 AM »
Mrmbb333 does a daily UV reading with the help of scattered volunteers, but Barb's thread covers more locations.  It would be handy if we each had our own meter that gave separate readings for the different types of UV, as well as the combined total.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2019, 06:41:00 AM by R.R. Book »

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #245 on: July 22, 2019, 11:54:25 AM »
Shade cloth over the muscadines:

This intervention seems to have successfully halted the demise of this faithful old crop...

I had a stash of small binder clips on hand, and simply used them to hold two lengths of shade cloth together to cover the fullness of the vine.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2019, 01:50:51 PM by R.R. Book »

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #246 on: July 24, 2019, 05:48:43 AM »
Unless prohibited by state law, no Northern garden would be complete without cultivars from the native Ribes genus, which includes both currants and gooseberries.  A few are even grown in the South.

Up 'til now, we had only planted one species of currant on our homestead, and that is the black currant, "Titania" cultivar.  Most cultivars of black currant have a strong muskiness that is both an acquired taste, and a preferred one in some northern cultures in which the jam is prized.  Titania is no exception to this.  The sour + musk flavor gives way to luscious sweetness if left on the branches until dead ripe, which means solid black and soft. 

The complex flavor of black currants denotes its constituency of phytochemicals and essential oils.  In particular the seeds of the berry are sought out for their unusually high level of gamma linolenic acid, an essential fatty acid present in twice the amount in black currants as in evening primrose oil.  It is highly anti-inflammatory, and can help with hair growth and skin clarity.  It also contains anthocyanins, the anti-oxidant present in deep bluish purple foods.

https://www.sigmaaldrich.com/life-science/nutrition-research/learning-center/plant-profiler/ribes-nigrum.html

https://www.drugs.com/npp/black-currant.html

But black currants - not the same thing as the Xantes raisin currant, went from being heirloom plants in every Victorian garden to becoming illegal in the States when they were at one time found to be a carrier of White Pine Blister Rust disease which decimated conifer biomes.  Much breeding has been done since then to improve currants and gooseberries, such that federal legislation banning Ribes has been discontinued, and many state prohibitions have also been relaxed, allowing Northerners once again to rediscover their native botanical and agricultural heritage.

Presently, currants and gooseberries can legally be shipped to all but these states:

Delaware
Maine
North Carolina
New Hampshire
Rhode Island
West Virginia
Massachusetts

Exceptions are made in certain of those locations by permit.  All of the above states plus Virginia more specifically prohibit the shipping of black currants.  Ohio and Michigan accept particular cultivars of black currant that are bred and certified to be fully disease-resistant.  Though White Pine Blister Rust is not hosted by other colors of currants or gooseberries, they all may be lumped in with the prohibition in those locations, with certain exceptions.  Areas not participating in the ban are careful to breed and sell appropriate cultivars, such that a long list now exists of available currant and gooseberry selections.

I spent about a week researching these until finally arriving at selections for our homestead, and strongly recommend that others who may want to try these species do so as well.  Though most nurseries will publish the advantages of each one, few will document a fuller picture, and that's where university agriculture departments in Northern tier states and in Canada can be very helpful, many of which having published results of their own in-house trials on-line, such as these:

https://hortnews.extension.iastate.edu/1995/3-17-1995/curr.html

http://uncommonfruit.cias.wisc.edu/gooseberry/

https://extension.umn.edu/fruit/growing-currants-and-gooseberries-home-garden#varieties-1221011

http://www.pawpaw.kysu.edu/PDF/goosetalk02112010fin2ooo.pdf

Also, here is a list of cultivars that have passed Royal Horticultural Society trials in the U.K., with several selections from Scotland, particularly for the black currants.  Bear in mind though that only some of these are available in the U.S. marketplace:
https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=739

Here is a list that I've compiled on thornless and semi-thornless gooseberries (currants don't suffer from thorns, and neither do jostaberries, a gooseberry-currant interspecies cross) - I've also noted other documented details about them to assist with narrowing the selection:

Captivator:
mildew-resistant, blush pink, sweet, upright, late season, reddish purple, drops its fruit on the ground, low yields, leaf spot

Friend
red, bothered by currant worm and has low yields

Poorman
pinkish red, early to mid season, sweet, opinions range from high to low yields and possible leaf spot susceptibility

Welcome
Wine red, slightly tart, only "moderately" resistant to mildew

Semi-Thornless:

Tixia
mid to late season, red, sweet-tart for baking, possible shorter life span.

Sabine
Pink and green (spreading habit)

Jeanne
wine red, pest-free, sweet,  disease free

Jahn's Prairie
Pink-red, disease-free including leaf-spot though differences of opinion.
Heat tolerant, won't drop leaves.  Very few thorns, moderate to high yields

Hinnomaki Red from Finland, one of the most disease-free currants in trials

Here's a list of North American fruits in the Ribes genus that are resistant to White Pine Blister Rust, which is pretty much everything on the market nowdays (watch for the distinction between full and partial resistance though):

Gooseberries:
Achilles, Canada O-273, Captivator, Columbus, Downing, Glenton Green, Golda, Hinnomaen kiltaenen green (Hinnomaki yellow), Howards Lancer, Invicta, Jahns Prairie, Jeanne, Josselyn, Oregon, Pixwell, Poorman, Sabine, Whitesmith, Black Velvet,

Black currant: Blackcomb, Canada RIB0112, Consort (Prince Consort), Crusader, Coronet, Crandall, 'Doch Siberyachki (Daughter of Siberia), Kosmioleskaja, Lowes Auslese, Minaj smyriou, Pilot Alexander Mamkin, Polar, Risager , Tahsis, Titania, Willoughby

Red currant:  Rondom (also Wilder, which is so rare that it seldom receives mention)

Black currant-Gooseberry hybrids: Josta (a.k.a.Jostaberry); Orus 8 (suffers from ordinary leaf rust though)

https://www.michigan.gov/documents/mdard/White_Pine_Blister_Rust_Resistant_Currant_and_Gooseberry_Varieties_489802_7.pdf

Based upon careful consideration of the above research, I made these final disease-resistant selections for our own homestead, beyond the medicinal Titania cultivar that we already had:

Currants:

Black - "Crandall Clove": sweet 1800's heirloom w/o musk, a.k.a. "yellow" due to blossom color


Red - "Wilder": an heirloom tart processing cultivar from Indiana dating to the 1800's


Pink - "Champagne": sweet, agricultural production dates to the early 1700's in New York State


Gooseberries:

Dark Red-Purple - "Black Velvet", a heavy yielder worth putting up with thorns for


Red - "Amish Red": tart, one of the only fully disease-resistant red cultivars that I could find


Burgundy - "Jeanne": sweet, semi-thornless and said not to be bothered by insects


Red - "Hinnomaki": from Finland, semi-thornless, extremely disease resistant, not bothered by insects
« Last Edit: July 29, 2019, 05:00:09 PM by R.R. Book »

ilinda

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #247 on: July 25, 2019, 07:14:47 PM »
Wow, thanks for the gooseberry and currant tutorial!  Lots of excellent information there to guide the rest of us along on our berry paths....

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #248 on: July 26, 2019, 09:50:43 AM »
 :)

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #249 on: July 26, 2019, 11:19:54 AM »
Having taken a 20 year break from growing full-sized thorny raspberries, enough breeding work has been accomplished in that time that I'm feeling ready to plunge back into the game.

Growing raspberries used to be not that much fun (except of course picking and eating them) due to the amount of space they hogged up (if let go in their natural shape), thorns, and all the bother with primocanes and floracanes.  That garden was always messy looking, and I so much enjoyed turning the whole space into a thornless blueberry patch back then.   

I feel that we've trialed the dwarf raspberries enough to know that they may best be grown by children, due to their diminutive stature and need to bend down to turn branches over to harvest the berries.  So around 2 dozen have been claimed by a struggling farmer with 6 of the most adorable children that you'd ever want to meet, and I'm happy that the rootstock will have a good home. 

Another thing that has changed my attitude toward raspberry cultivation is personally witnessing the efficiency of the cordon system on numerous Amish farms - so neat and tidy, in fact, that a row of the brambles fits right into their vegetable garden without being the least bit in the way.  All done with posts about every 8 feet connected by tight heavy-gauge wire at the tops on which the several canes of each individual bramble are bound together and tied upward to the wire, so that every few feet you have an entire full-size berry bush with plenty of room around each one to scrupulously keep the ground open and air circulating (the Amish women, being of Germanic descent, don't tolerate anything out of place on their farms!)  :).



This may be the best method for growing brambles in copperhead and rattlesnake country as well, an important consideration where we live, as low-growing shrubs can create hiding spaces.  Fortunately the homestead with all the children is not located in the woods, but rather out in a wide-open space.

Another factor in favor of returning to the cultivation of full-sized brambles is that the breeding work has left growers with almost half a dozen cultivars which are strictly primocanes, which fruit the same year in which they grow, not only once, but twice.  Other names for them are Autumn and Everbearing raspberries.  The old cultivars fruited in the current year on last year's growth, and then the finished canes would die, leaving growers with the need to cut out some canes and leave others until next year. 

The new "Primocane Raspberries" are as follows:

Autumn Britten (a.k.a. Autumn Bliss)
Caroline
Heritage
Joan J
Polka

Of those, Joan J is completely thornless and one of the heaviest producers in a University trial:

https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1670&context=extension_curall

Screenshot (5648)

Joan J's fruit was in the top three for size as well:

Table 1. Average fruit size (g/fruit)

                     Mean

Anne              2.94             
Ruby              2.73             
Joan J            2.71
Caroline         2.67         
Polka             2.62             
Himbo Top      2.55
Jaclyn            2.41             
Polana            2.24           
Heritage         2.12       
Summit          1.51   
       
Nurseries strongly recommend that raspberries not be grown within 100 feet of a black raspberry plant due to transferability of disease.  However, that rule seems mainly to apply to any wild ones that may be lurking on the property, rather than to bred and certified plants:
https://homeguides.sfgate.com/can-red-raspberries-black-raspberries-grow-next-other-41711.html


Full-size thornless Primocane Raspberry plant

More soon...

« Last Edit: July 27, 2019, 01:44:38 PM by R.R. Book »

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #250 on: July 26, 2019, 07:37:50 PM »
Just adding an addendum that I've discovered one cultivar of black raspberry, as well, that falls within the "everbearing" or "autumn bearing" category, meaning a potential for two crops per year depending upon what time of the year the grower chooses to prune:

"Ohio Treasure" is the name of the cultivar.
Black raspberries are a nutritional superfood.  Though they look appealing when they're red, one should resist the temptation to sample them until they're dead ripe, meaning purplish black with a bit of a haze on them the way a ripe blueberry has a "frosty" look to it.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2019, 05:51:58 AM by R.R. Book »

ilinda

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #251 on: July 27, 2019, 03:32:17 PM »
About five years ago I planted 8 raspberry plants purchased from a farmer, but each one died within two years, so the question remained--is it our soil that's wrong, or perhaps the wrong type berry plant for this area?

In the past year or two I've been planning to try growing raspberries again, possibly evey digging some of the delicious wild raspberry plants that grow amidst the wild blackberries.  Now you have convinced me it's an excellent time. 

Thanks for all the berry information which is good for anyone wanting to start in these berry plants.

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #252 on: July 28, 2019, 06:00:16 AM »
Ilinda, I'm assuming that they had both primocanes and floracanes?  Could it be that they just needed a hard pruning?

As far as cultivating wild berries, I do that here with wineberries by encouraging them to congregate in a few different areas.  I just weed everything else out in those areas, and the wineberries keep starting new baby plants amidst the mature ones.  All wild brambles supposedly can harbor diseases though, that can affect cultivated ones, so there's the "100-foot rule" of distance between garden and whatever was transplanted from brush.

Some crosses of blackberry and raspberry have been created that are more common in the South (and warm climates in other countries) and possibly more durable: "Marionberries", "Boysenberries" and "Sylvanberries."

https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/fruits/blackberries/silvanberry-information.htm

https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/fruits/blackberries/what-are-marionberries.htm

Marionberry pedigree from Wiki:



This article says that purple raspberries grow best in the south:
https://www.scribd.com/document/107187036/growing-raspberries

Berry collections recommended for the South, which your grow zone would be considered to be the northern edge of:

https://www.starkbros.com/products/berry-plants/blackberry-plants/southern-blackberry-plant-collection

https://www.willisorchards.com/product/southern-bababerry-raspberry-plant

https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/gardening-by-zone/zone-9-10-11/zone-9-raspberries.htm

https://www.willisorchards.com/category/raspberry-plants

Best of luck!  :)


ilinda

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #253 on: July 28, 2019, 08:00:09 PM »
If anyone wants to know anything about berries, YOU are the one!  Being fairly ignorant of them, except that they taste good and are healthful, I should study some of your posts before doing anything more!

R.R. Book

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Re: Northern Permaculture
« Reply #254 on: July 29, 2019, 05:12:05 AM »
Am still learning myself Ilinda! :)

 

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