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  • Topic: Planting the Durango & Jasper

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    • November 3, 2019 2:53 PM EST
      • Pleasanton, CA
         
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      OK, we are now planting (well, mostly Nancy and her helper but I'm there! I promise!). I got to learn how to prune conifers and did most of them, but those are for next week. To start with we concentrated on the upper level of Durango, with a lot of succulents. You may be slightly underwhelmed by the plant coverage, but we're leaving room for buildings and expecting these plants to fill in over time. So here we go:

       

      Nancy and her helper after rocks were rearranged (much better now!) and the soil has been excavated and enhanced, as the first few plants are in place:

       

       

      And some other views after the plants that were done today. So succulatious!

       

       

    • November 3, 2019 7:00 PM EST
      • Rooster Works "Area 69" ,
         
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      Excellent ! You got the right lady in there for the plantings . Read a lot of her articles in GR over the years and it's really gonna bring the RR to life even if you don't model Amtrak !

    • November 3, 2019 7:01 PM EST
      • Rooster Works "Area 69" ,
         
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      LOVE IT ...but the plantings will make it over the top !

       

      What is the cacti in the foreground? Looks like something I might want to grow very large and break off a limb to beat the boy with !

      This post was edited by Rooster ' at November 3, 2019 7:07 PM EST
    • November 3, 2019 7:07 PM EST
      • Pleasanton, CA
         
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      Afraid I don't now what that is Rooster. It was something I got given to me with no name and Nancy just took it and used it. Maybe she knows.... I'll ask her.

    • November 3, 2019 7:57 PM EST
      • Kailua, HI
         
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      Jim,

       

      That foreground plant looks like aloe, for what my opinion is worth.

       

      We've tried...and failed...with many of the succulents that I saw in your gorgeous photo spread.  May I ask what Nancy and her helper used for soil, and what they recommend as a watering regimen?

       

      Thanks in advance,

      Eric

    • November 3, 2019 8:03 PM EST
      • Rooster Works "Area 69" ,
         
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      Jim Rowson said:

      Afraid I don't now what that is Rooster. It was something I got given to me with no name and Nancy just took it and used it. Maybe she knows.... I'll ask her.

      Only interested if can grow them large in PA  for beating sticks but thanks Jim! The yucca isn't cutting it anymore.

    • November 3, 2019 8:05 PM EST
      • Rooster Works "Area 69" ,
         
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      Eric Mueller said:

      Jim,

       

      That foreground plant looks like aloe, for what my opinion is worth.

      Don't look like the aloe I had inside here for years but possibly .....Can you grow huge aloe with heavy spikes ?

       

    • November 3, 2019 8:42 PM EST
      • Kailua, HI
         
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      @Rooster.  Yep.

    • November 3, 2019 9:26 PM EST
      • Waverly, Alabama
         
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      Jim, the plantings literally bring the railroad to life.  Nancy and her crew appear to do fine work.

      Rooster ' said:
      Jim Rowson said:

      Afraid I don't now what that is Rooster. It was something I got given to me with no name and Nancy just took it and used it. Maybe she knows.... I'll ask her.

      Only interested if can grow them large in PA  for beating sticks but thanks Jim! The yucca isn't cutting it anymore.

       

      Rooster, you're looking for Fraxinus americana, better known as white ash.  But you better hurry, it will take several decades for it to mature before you can make a baseball bat out of it 

      ____________________________________

       

    • November 3, 2019 10:15 PM EST
      • Pleasanton, CA
         
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      Eric: I'll ask how they prep the soil and will get more info on watering regimen soonish. Right now I'm watering the succulents every other day but that may be to help them get established. One trick Nancy told me is to not water the succulents immediately after planting but to instead wait for a couple of days for the first drenching.

       

      What I know right now about prepping the soil is: we have clay soil and they dug down about 6 inches and mixed it 50-50 with some planting soil (not sure what the actual makeup is of what came out of those bags). I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that it will be different for you on the islands...

       

      FYI, here are the lemon cypress conifers that we will be planting next week (among other stuff). These were $10 at Home Depot but were heavily pruned to look more like a tree:

       

       

    • November 4, 2019 12:24 AM EST
      • Kailua, HI
         
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      Jim,

      Thanks.  Please tell Nancy I enjoy her GR columns and her book!

       

      Eric

    • November 4, 2019 9:02 AM EST
      • Pleasanton, California
         
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      Looks great Jim, making good progress.

      ____________________________________

      Dan DeVoto

      P-Town & West Side R.R.

      Pleasanton, California

      https://www.youtube.com/danstrains

    • November 4, 2019 11:04 AM EST
      • Ormond Beach, Fl. 32174
         
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      Don't know why the call the succulents there more like growulants, and it seems the more you leave them alone the better they do, give them a short while and you will be getting a ton of cuttings. What type of rocks are those in your pictures, they look a lot like our coquina here in Florida which is an indigenous one made up of sea shells? Layout is looking great, Bill

      old falls

        

    • November 4, 2019 11:51 AM EST
      • Pleasanton, CA
         
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      Hey Bill, thanks. The rocks I'm using are branded as "California Gold" and I believe are granite but I'm not 100% sure. I am 100% sure there is no actual gold in them :-).

    • November 8, 2019 9:45 PM EST
      • Pleasanton, CA
         
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      OK, more planting in Durango, the upper half. Also a lot of work on irrigation (not as much fun).

       

      Eric: I asked about how they are prepping the soil They dig down about 6 inches into our clay soil. Then mix 50-50 the base soil and some purchased top soil. Nothing exotic (no Miracle Grow for example, as that will, at least for the succulents, burn them). Not sure how this would translate to Oahu. Nancy is actually interested in chatting with you, at least she is if you are the person who she met a year or 2 ago at an event. PM me and I can hook you together.

       

      More plants here as well as adding a bunch of gravel and fines (for roads and base for buildings). To me it looks a lot more finished.

       

      Here are a few pics:

       

       

      More to come next Friday!

       

      Cheers!

       

    • November 8, 2019 10:18 PM EST
      • Waverly, Alabama
         
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      Jim, the plantings continue to look great and add beautiful color to the layout.  Are there any plans to disguise the sprinkler heads?

      ____________________________________

       

    • November 8, 2019 10:31 PM EST
      • Pleasanton, CA
         
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      Dan: Vague plans for disguising the sprinklers right now. Gonna think about it and look to see how Nancy hid hers (I can't come up with the word for the material she uses). They are a bit in your face, aren't they? It was definitely a topic of conversation (from all of us) and I'm sure we'll find some way to minimize them.

       

      Thanks!

       

    • November 8, 2019 11:18 PM EST
      • Vail, Az
         
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      Cap them low and convert to drippers. Succulents don't need much water, they hoard it. Down here they like sandy fast draining soils. Run 1/4" brown lines to each plant or along a row with a head for each. No expensive tools to assemble. They do require a timer and reducing solenoid valve if you are using city water.

      So simple, even I have contracted to install it!

      ____________________________________

      John

       

      The older I get, the less I know, please don't make me prove it.

       

       

    • November 8, 2019 11:24 PM EST
      • Pleasanton, CA
         
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      Thanks John. I was kind of assuming I would do drip but it turns out that Nancy is totally anti-drip. In her experience, drip is 10 times more fussy than sprinklers. I figure that since I'm hiring her for her expertise (like I did with Daniel Smith) that I should follow her preferences. We've talked about it several times.

       

      That being said, lots of people have a different opinion and I certainly don't want to get into a big discussion about it. We'll see what happens. The main thing I'm worried about is how the sprinklers will impact my scratchbuilt structures. On the other hand, I'd sure like these plants to live. BTW: the rest of the layout is non-succulent.

       

      We'll see.... I definitely appreciate your opinion and experience...

       

      [edited to fix punctuation]

      This post was edited by Jim Rowson at November 8, 2019 11:24 PM EST
    • November 9, 2019 12:10 AM EST
      • Vail, Az
         
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      I've done both, pluses and cons both ways.

      Good luck hiding them.

       

       

      ____________________________________

      John

       

      The older I get, the less I know, please don't make me prove it.

       

       

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