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Old 06-19-2014, 01:06 PM   #21
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Thanks for the encouragement, linrose.

I do get impatient at times...then, I, usually, convince myself that the improvements are there...and will increase exponentially through the years.

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We do struggle with management, we want to keep the crysalises and shelter habitat intact through winter and mow after emergence but before ground nesters need shelter. I worry about our wild turkeys who nest on the ground in tall grasses. I'm happy to see a group of poults with their mom walking around the field these days. I know the 1/3 mow rule but we just don't have the equipment to do it ourselves and the bushhogger we hire charges a lot to come out every time. I wish we had our own equipment, maybe a future purchase.
Yes, it sounds like timing is an issue. I'm glad you seem to have succeeded. Good luck with figuring out how best to handle the 1/3 rule. I will have to deal with that before long too, I bet...although, my meadow will be easily "doable" myself, I think.
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Old 06-19-2014, 04:31 PM   #22
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Here's a photo of a first year cupplant "volunteer" out in the field near the prairie bed. This guy's a brute already!
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Old 06-20-2014, 09:36 PM   #23
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Here's a photo of a first year cupplant "volunteer" out in the field near the prairie bed. This guy's a brute already!
Wow! are you sure that's a first-year...or is it the first year you noticed it?

I planted one last year from a gallon-sized pot, and it looks almost as big as yours this year.
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Old 02-22-2015, 06:55 PM   #24
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With the thread on cold moist stratification, I've been thinking about my native meadow project. As I mentioned there, I will winter sow some in pots as usual, but I also want to direct sow the seeds I've collected and mixed together to create my own (mostly ) locally native mix. My problem is that I didn't smother enough lawn--then again, I may not have enough seed. I do plan to order some grass, sedge, and rush seed from Ernst Seed (a Pennsylvania company and that has quite a few PA ecotype seeds) to add to my mix.

Now for my question:

I have a source for some more cardboard, and I am wondering if I can put it down in areas I've yet to smother, get a load of old, mostly decomposed woodchips to place on top, and then plant my seeds on that? Would roots be able to grow down through the layers of (moist) cardboard while the grass and weeds will be unable to penetrate it from below?

Any thoughts?
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Old 02-22-2015, 08:16 PM   #25
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Good question.
I wouldn't think just the wood chips would do it as far as trying to sprout seed in but then again..... I have never tried it.
Myself, I'd mix a bit of soil into the chips before seeding.

Why don't you do a little trial planting seeds into a cookie tray of wood chips right now inside and let us know if they sprout and stay living.
You might have to add fertilizer to the chips much the same as we were discussing having to do with the coconut coir.

I'm sure the roots would penetrate it once the cardboard decomposes a bit. Until then, I'm imagining the roots running into it and then going horizontally much like a plant that hits the bottom of a pot which I suppose isn't too too bad
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Old 02-22-2015, 09:13 PM   #26
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I did plant seeds in woodchips in the small section that I did a couple of years ago...they grew fine. There should be pictures early on in this thread.

I guess I'm mostly concerned about the plants not getting established properly with the cardboard underneath--at the same time, I don't want to have to wait another season to smother more areas before I can plant.

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Good question.
I wouldn't think just the wood chips would do it as far as trying to sprout seed in but then again..... I have never tried it.
Myself, I'd mix a bit of soil into the chips before seeding.

Why don't you do a little trial planting seeds into a cookie tray of wood chips right now inside and let us know if they sprout and stay living.
You might have to add fertilizer to the chips much the same as we were discussing having to do with the coconut coir.

I'm sure the roots would penetrate it once the cardboard decomposes a bit. Until then, I'm imagining the roots running into it and then going horizontally much like a plant that hits the bottom of a pot which I suppose isn't too too bad
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Old 02-23-2015, 08:44 AM   #27
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I did plant seeds in woodchips in the small section that I did a couple of years ago...they grew fine. There should be pictures early on in this thread.

I guess I'm mostly concerned about the plants not getting established properly with the cardboard underneath--at the same time, I don't want to have to wait another season to smother more areas before I can plant.
I'm getting impatient as well, Dap, and I've thought about trying this...but haven't done it yet. My experience with cardboard has been that some breaks down fairly quickly (which would probably allow the babies roots to penetrate) and some takes more time. I wonder if adding some compost/soil on top of the cardboard under the wood chips would help get the seeds established?

I will probably be trying this either this spring or in the fall. I just have so many areas I still want to work on and seed is more affordable than plants.
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Old 02-23-2015, 04:27 PM   #28
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A bed I had created mid Summer by first topping off the grass with cardboard then soil was decayed enough by fall so I could plant plants I had purchased or grown in pots. GO FOR IT!
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Old 02-23-2015, 05:35 PM   #29
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I'm getting impatient as well, Dap, and I've thought about trying this...but haven't done it yet. My experience with cardboard has been that some breaks down fairly quickly (which would probably allow the babies roots to penetrate) and some takes more time. I wonder if adding some compost/soil on top of the cardboard under the wood chips would help get the seeds established?

I will probably be trying this either this spring or in the fall. I just have so many areas I still want to work on and seed is more affordable than plants.
My attempt is to put seed balls into the wood chips. This should be able to germinate seeds in the seed ball and not require a lot of changes to the mulch.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:31 AM   #30
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Seed balls? What do you do? Compress a wad of soil with seeds? and set it in the chips?
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