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betwys1

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I am so embarrassed... The purple flower is a tibouchina... NOT an Australian native as I’ve always thought... It’s a South American native. 🤔 The orange flowers are actually a native orchid called epidendrem! You could throw them against a wall and they would grow! So hardy!
I can handle endless quantities of news about orchids that are hardy! But hardy in Sydney does not mean hardy in arrid SW Oklahoma, I fear....
 

Marsha Cassada

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Planted my ornamental corn, brown cotton, and yard long beans today. Hope the ground is warm enough. Weather looks warm for the next week. Carried my cacti out to their summer home. So glad to have them out of the house, and they are happier too. Wind has been terrible, but we just do what we have to do anyway.
 

Marsha Cassada

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I think hummingbird moths are the weirdest thing ever. When I first heard about them I didn't believe they were a real thing! I found out last summer we have them here but I have never seen one. Are they really a moth? Fragile like a moth? See, I still have my doubts 🤣!
They turn into the disgusting tomato horn worm. Enjoy them as moths.
 

Kelly

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At first we mistook them as hummingbirds until my hubby saw their weird long tongue thingy come out. They kinda fly around like hummingbirds, they aren’t as slow as moths. They arent as skittish as hummingbirds either, you can walk right up next to them. They are much bigger than your standard moth, they are about the size of a hummingbird. I think they are really cool. Its a good thing I don’t like nor grow tomatoes! 🤣
 

Silver City Heritage Farmstead

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The link above is to a Colorado State University information sheet about "hummingbird moths". You'll note that only tomato hornworms and tobacco hornworms are particularly detrimental to cultivated crops. I've mentioned before that I may sacrifice a plant or two so that my predatory wasps can reproduce.

If you decide to start picking caterpillars to save your plants and feed your feathered friends, look for the white stripes on the sides. Tobacco hornworms have diagonal white stripes, like wisps of cigarette smoke rising up their sides. (That's how I remember the difference between them.) Tomato hornworms have v-shaped white stripes on their sides.

I pick them off most of the time, though they hang on tightly! They blend well with foliage, so at the first sight of munched leaves I closely scrutinize the stems and undersides of leaves.
 

Marsha Cassada

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Planted my pod corn, brown cotton, and yard long seeds. Probably too early but those warm days are devious. Went from 90, to 41 last night. I think the soil is warm enough for the seeds, though.

Finally have to give up and start trapping raccoons. They are tearing up my garden water features and terrorizing the remaining goldfish. I know it is partly because the farm ponds are dry. We are pretty much live and let live, but they have to go. Predictions are for hot, dry summer for us. Not good, but just have to work around Nature.
 

Marsha Cassada

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Four raccoons so far and we know there is at least one more. Interestingly, all have severe mange. Their hides are scratched and bleeding and the fur comes off in tufts. A local Ranger said they have mange. Poor creatures; think how miserable they are. Other people I've talked to who are trapping raccoons say the same thing. I wonder why this would be so widespread in the raccoon population? Beware for your dogs outdoors! And I need to be watchful working in the plants in the area where the raccoons were around the water garden.
 

Silver City Heritage Farmstead

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Usually these things happen when an area is overpopulated. Also, I know that there's a genetic component with demodectic mange in dogs. Wonder if there it's the same in raccoons?

Also, if they're in poor condition I'd be extra watchful for rabies. We've had several foxes in NC with it this year, and they've been in poor condition too.
 

Marsha Cassada

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Usually these things happen when an area is overpopulated. Also, I know that there's a genetic component with demodectic mange in dogs. Wonder if there it's the same in raccoons?

Also, if they're in poor condition I'd be extra watchful for rabies. We've had several foxes in NC with it this year, and they've been in poor condition too.
Good idea to be watchful, for those of us with rural gardens. Oboomer and peony.jpgne of our mountain boomers by a Bowl of Beauty peony. Such a gorgeous plant! I only discovered them a few years ago and wonder where they've been all my life!
 

Silver City Heritage Farmstead

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Happy May Day, from our micro-farmstead to everyone!

Edited to ask: have any of you used one of those flexible, expanding/contracting hoses? If so, how durable were they? Were they worth the space savings they offer? Or am I better off purchasing another heavy-duty 100' hose to reach all sides of my micro-farmstead?
 
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Edelweiss

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I have seen and used them at shows. Basically the consensus seems to be that they're great for use like that, in shows or barns but they don't really stand up to heavy wear, if they were out in a field for example.
 
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