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An Experiment And A Rescue

I am experimenting. I am rescuing.

The experiment

The thing I am experimenting with is a way to grow vegetables (at least, the fruit, leaf and stem vegetables; I don’t think it would work for root vegetables) in just water. No aeration, no sitting in vermiculite that is filled with water and fertilizer every few minutes as what happens with hydroponics.

And no, I’m not talking about sticking a cutting or transplant in just water and letting it sit. Can you say, “rotten plant”?

Should I tell you the secret I’m going to discover that is going to single-handedly shut down potting mix companies? I’m trying it right now with a tomato cutting.

Tell you what. If the thing is still alive and growing in one month, I’ll tell you. Fair?

I know no one is as clever as I am when it comes to alternative gardening techniques and therefore my experiment has never been tried before, so there’s a chance it may actually work.

Actually, I’ll tell you even if it fails. Then you won’t be tempted to try the same thing. 😉

The rescue

Thanks to my not keeping my garden soil moist enough when the rain stopped, over half my strawberry plants are fried. As in, brown and crisp.

And I am sick of pouring twenty gallons of water over my strawberry patch every other day (because they don’t seem to be getting better – some days they have looked much worse the day after a watering). But my frugal self does not want to buy more strawberries next year if I don’t have to. With the old plants and the new shoots put together, I could probably come up with at least 300 plants whose roots are still good!

So I have decided to rescue a portion of them. How big a portion will depend on how many containers I come up with. See, what I’m doing is cutting as many new shoots as I can find and transplanting them into small containers. I put the containers on a tray or saucer, then water the saucer. Much easier than hauling twenty milk jugs of water to the garden every other day – or even once a week, if it comes to that!

I would be able to save the 200 plants that I wanted to see produce fruit next year with all the containers I have, except that I’ll need around thirty of them to start plants from seed next year.

UPDATE: my rescue turned out to be 120 strawberry plants.

Coming up: how I am going to create a garden that will require little work after the initial set-up. And a sneak-peek into my plans for our future porch!

See you then! In the meantime, stay cool!

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