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

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

       

      Eric

    • November 3, 2019 10:15 PM EST
    • 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 3, 2019 9:26 PM EST
    • 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 8:42 PM EST
    • @Rooster.  Yep.

    • November 3, 2019 8:05 PM EST
    • 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 8:03 PM EST
    • 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 7:57 PM EST
    • 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 7:07 PM EST
    • 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 7:01 PM EST
    •  

       

      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 !

    • November 3, 2019 7:00 PM EST
    • 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 2:53 PM EST
    • 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!

       

       

    • October 22, 2019 12:52 PM EDT
    • I'm planting nothing but succulents anymore, stuff that's prickly and hard to eradicate. 

    • September 24, 2019 3:19 AM EDT
    • A rule of "brown thumb"; the more expensive the plant, the quicker it dies..................

    • September 24, 2019 1:50 AM EDT
    • David Maynard said:

      Black thumb? Sounds like gangrene to me.......

       

      I have a brown thumb. But, if I plant something and then leave it alone, it has a much better chance of surviving.

      I have an incredible ability to kill plants.  Even sedum withers under my hand!

    • September 20, 2019 10:46 PM EDT
    • More cannabis? That darn stuff is in just about everything lately.

    • September 20, 2019 8:14 PM EDT
    • I saw the hemp mixed in Jim

    • September 20, 2019 3:46 PM EDT
    • Ooh, looks like your little folks are gonna have a bumper crop of bananas.

       

    • September 20, 2019 3:46 PM EDT
    • Nice, you will like the cotoneaster, I have one: (looks like an apple tree)

       

       

       

    • September 20, 2019 3:34 PM EDT
    • Nancy came by today and we looked at a lot of plants. More to come bu this was a good dump. A lot of these are for the desert and logging area, with some transition. The forest is tbd.

       

      I promised to show lots of plants and some about where they are purchased. Many of these are labeled with the source but otherwise I don't have much info about them. One is from one of Nancy's friends...

       

      Let's start in the desert area with a few trees, beginning with the one from Nancy's friend:

       

       

      And some groundcover/cactus (sorry about not getting entire labels on these):

       

       

      Some transition trees, also succulents but more treelike and less cactus like:

       

       

      And some bonsai-ish trees for the log loading area:

       

       

      Whew! That's a lot of pictures! Some of the more expensive trees ($45!) are one of a kind in this garden. I'm counting on Nancy to teach me how to keep these things alive!

       

    • September 19, 2019 5:06 PM EDT
    • Black thumb? Sounds like gangrene to me.......

       

      I have a brown thumb. But, if I plant something and then leave it alone, it has a much better chance of surviving.