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Monthly Archives: August 2018

Grow Shiitake Logs In A Home Garden

Identifying the log

This is another important step that comprises the process of growing shiitake. For Shiitake Logs you have to identify the best and get them from hardwood trees that are freshly cut. While the specifications of logs can change, you can cut them into suitable sizes to achieve your target. There are different trees from which you can cut sections of logs for Shiitake Spawns but make sure that you consult a professional with adequate experience to know the things in entirety. Buying mushroom logs for sale is another idea on which you can rely to enhance the production. It is the quality of the log that can boost the growth of mushroom. Once you have finished the process of getting the Shiitake Mushroom Logs you will be able to grow mushrooms on them for a long time. Logs need to be left for some time to allow the fungicides to die before you move on to the next step.

Buying and stuffing the spawn

Next is the step to get shiitake mushroom spawn whether in the form of sawdust, plugs or thimbles. There are a lot of online portals selling spawns needed for shiitake mushrooms offering different strains and varied characteristics. For each log, you will need a certain number of spawns. After this, you will need to drill holes in the logs and the entire thing is to be done around the circumference of the log. You have to plug spawn in the holes. After filling the holes with spawns you have to cover them with good quality wax which is food grade such as beeswax to avoid contamination.

Keeping the logs

You have to stack the logs against something or lay them on the ground, preferably on a bed of straw. Ideally, the place in which the logs are placed must be shady. However, air circulation must be proper and if there is scanty rainfall in the area, you can keep the logs moist. As a matter of fact, this is the trickiest part of growing shiitake mushroom on the logs. You might have to go through a few steps of trial and error before getting it right.

Growth of mushroom

Finally, the shiitake mushrooms will grow on the logs within a period of six to twelve months. If you are lucky enough the production can continue until springtime. You can expect the growth for about three to four years until the cellulose of the log is consumed fully and prepare for commercial selling if you want.

Aquatic Weed Removal Tools

1. Weed Cutter

Pond owners willing to take a natural approach for the upkeep of their pond can resort to weed cutter for aquatic weed removal. It is a great manual tool with sharp blades. As you toss it inside the pond, it will slice through most aquatic weeds. The stainless steel sharp blades eliminate the weed from its base because it can reach shallow and deep parts easily.

2. Shovels

Use a shovel when you want to limit the weed population instead of complete eradication. The working of a shovel is such that you have to manually dig out the weed and cut it from its roots. For employing this method, you need to keep two things in mind –

A. The water level in the pond should be low so that the weeds become visible to the naked eye and you strike it off from its roots.

B. For prevention of algae and muck growth, you need to remove both the dead and decayed weed stalks too.

3. Rakes

Pond rakes are of two types – electric and manual. The electric rake will simply float around your swimming area and remove the muck and weeds whereas the hand-operated rakes will help you clear both the sticks, dead leaves, and other debris that gets deposited at the shoreline as well as the weeds inside the pond. Now handle even the most stubborn weeds with a pond rake equipment and turn back your pond into its pristine beauty.

Holidays by Gardening in December

Prune Deciduous Fruit Tree: Prune deciduous trees once they have dropped their leaves. Don’t be afraid to give the tree a healthy trim as they will bounce back nicely in spring.

Fill In Bare Spots in Your Lawn: Since southern California winters are mild, there is still time to seed bare spots in your lawn. If rain is sparse, you’ll need to water regularly.

Start A Mulch Pile: Rake up leaves and create a homemade mulch pile. Add leaves and grass clippings. Water the pile (if necessary). Turn once a week. You’ll have compost by spring.

Remove Dead Flowers and Branches: Gardens can look a bit ragged in winter. Keep them fresh by cutting away dead flowers, leaves and branches. Consider cutting back large trees including pines and oaks if limbs look weak or have become overgrown.

Recycle Your Christmas Tree: Check with your city on how and when to recycle your Christmas tree after the holidays. Remove all decorations and lights. Most recyclers will accept flocked and unflocked trees.

Extend the Life of Poinsettias: During the holidays, keep poinsettias in a cool indoor location-away from heating vents and fireplaces. Once spring arrives next year, cut the stems back. Put them outdoors in the shade during summer and then bring them back indoors in fall. To get the dark red leaves that poinsettias are known for, they’ll need to spend half of the day in total darkness beginning in October. They’ll start blooming-ready for next Christmas-by mid-November.

Budget Garden Sheds

Size

Sheds are usually measured in feet and inches, and are produced in many different shapes and sizes. The most popular sizes are 6×4, 7×5 and 8×6. As these sheds are manufactured on a big scale by a wide range of producers, they tend to cost less than more unusual sizes.

Wall construction

Shed walls can be divided into two main types: overlap and shiplap. Overlap sheds are the easiest to produce, and therefore the most cost-effective option. Their walls are made up of horizontal overlapping planks which form a series of sloping surfaces, like tiles on a house roof. This simple but effective design lets rain quickly flow off the shed walls before it gets a chance to soak into the timber. An advantage of this design is that if an individual plank gets damaged, you can quickly slot a new one in place without having to disturb any surrounding boards.

Shiplap sheds have a higher price tag but are sturdier and more weatherproof. This is because the wall planks are shaped to tightly interlock with each other. They also have an extra lip, or groove, between each panel to help rainwater run off easily, making them twice as watertight. In addition, these sheds are often made from superior timber which has been slow-grown for extra strength.

There is a third type of wall, also at the premium end of the market, which is often referred to as shiplap but is not quite the same: tongue & groove. While this is very similar, with a secure interlocking construction, it does not have the extra lip between each board.

Timber density

Check the thickness of the walls, roof and floor before making a choice. Ideally they should all be at least 8mm, and preferably 12mm. The roof and floor in cheaper sheds are nearly always made of chipboard (also called OSB, short for oriented strand board), whereas in high-priced models they are likely to be solid wood.

Roof covering

The cheapest type of roof covering is black mineral felt. It is also the thinnest, so needs careful fitting as it can be easily torn. Green mineral felt is thicker and more durable, but costs a little more. Both types are normally supplied in rolls, and have to be cut to size then nailed in place along the roof frame. Corrugated roofing sheets made from bitumen are also becoming popular, but are much more expensive.

Sheds are made with roofs in two main designs: apex (shaped like an inverted V) and pent (a single flat sloping surface). Both types cost about the same, but it’s a bit easier to fit covering to a pent roof as there is no centre ridge involved. You can also get reverse apex sheds, where the door is set in the long side wall instead of the front, but as these are less common they tend to cost more.

Timber treatment

You may have noticed that not all sheds are the same colour. This is due largely to the timber treatment used by the manufacturer to protect the shed from rot and insect attack. There are two types:

  • Dip-treated
  • Pressure-treated