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(The darker brown area is the part that was covered for a week)

Remember last Wednesday (April 16) I reported that I was trying a concoction of equal parts of beer, ammonia and coca cola poured over leaves and vegetable scraps?  Gene Rodgers, my neighbor had read on the Internet that if you pour that solution on organic matter, then cover and wait one week to turn it, then cover again and wait one more week and you will have soil.

The photo above is what my pile looked like yesterday when I uncovered it.  Some of the organic materials had already turned to soil.  I stirred up the pile and then covered it back up.  I'll let you know what happens next Wednesday, April 30.  I meant to ask Gene today what his pile looked like but I forgot.

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Speaking of Gene Rodgers, my neighbor, the eternal inventor, tinker. . .

I stopped over to visit with Gene and his wife Margie today and Gene has yet another handy gardening apparatus that he has built for Margie--a self-watering plant container.  It is made from two five-gallon buckets that nest inside each other. The bucket on the bottom is the reservoir that holds the water and the bucket on the top holds the soil and the plant.  To  fill the reservoir, water is poured down a PVC pipe that is attached to the side of the barrel with a tie-wrap.  The pipe extends down into the second bucket where the water is stored.  A large hole is drilled in the center of the top bucket and then small holes are drilled all around the bottom of the top bucket.  A plastic cup, with holes drilled in its sides is placed in the center hole.  The buckets are nested inside each other and the top one is filled with dirt.  The dirt in the plastic cup acts as a wick to suck up the water from the reservoir.

Buckets nested together and waiting for the soil

The photo above shows the bottom of the top barrel.  Notice the PVC pipe is notched to allow for the flow of water into the bottom bucket that functions as the reservoir for the water.

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This water barrel means the gardener does not have to water half as much as usual because so much less water is lost to evaporation.  Heavy mulching on the top soil will even further reduce evaporation.

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Tomorrow bright and early I'm leaving for Clifton, Texas to visit no less than 20 keyhole gardens.  You can expect a full report from me on Saturday.  Until then. . . Happy Gardening. 

 

 

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