songbird's roost

Discussion in 'Members' Systems' started by songbird, Sep 26, 2013.

  1. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    no, they'll be fine with that method, moving as much of the root ball as possible because they are rather shallow rooted as compared to many other plants. water them in well, mulch 'em good and keep an eye on them and water when needed if you don't get enough rain (especially in sandy soil).

    for us the plants don't do a whole lot the first part of spring, so that is probably as good a time as any to move them.

    the runner thing, definitely will get more runners with june-bearing. i have more trouble with keeping them under control than not having enough runners. if you have enough sunshine, water, and decent soil you'll have more plants than you can use. i give some away but mostly they get turned under when i'm thinning.

    my ever-bearing fill in space very slowly in comparison. i'd say it's almost by a factor of five difference, but i've never actually grown them without competition to track down every runner to count.

    if for some reason you've ever gotten alpine berries by mistake you might be waitiing quite some time for runners... : )

    for larger outputs plan on renovating the strawberry bed every year or second year, stretching to three in some locations. i do 1/3 to 1/2 of each established pure bed/area per season.

    one reference that i've been using states that the mid-summer flowers on ever-bearing plants should be removed as the fruit will be of inferior quality and it saps the strength of the plant but i've never done that nor noticed a problem. it could be that they are writing of a hotter climate than what we get here or my shading with legumes is sufficient.

    for the mixed/wilder gardens i'm being more experimental and may let them wander around and that will be the renovation process. to turn under the older plants behind or where i want to plant something else in a more formal patch. we'll see how those work out the next few years.
     
  2. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    progress of sorts (beanos pictures project)

    ok, after much variety of attempts at getting decent pictures, i'm getting closer to acceptable, but not quite there yet. to say the least, to get enough light on the subject inside is almost impossible using one light source. after trying a regular incandescent bulb, then a flourescent, and then stepping up to a LED bulb with many more lumens, the light still was rather wimpy and didn't show the colors or details, then i tried one more humongous incandescent bulb of 4500lumens, still not enough. hmm. so, thinking, cheapo, the sun is finally getting out again, go outside! so today i lined up some samples and took them out and gave it a try. the lighter colors are looking much better now, but i'm still not happy with the darker colors, i'm not sure what to try next other than more reflecting surfaces to get even more light. the box i built to use inside is lined with foil, so i can perhaps use it to reflect more light, but i hate to chop it apart after putting that much work into putting it together.

    the other alternative is to talk to the photo studio people and see what they recommend (besides a new camera : ) for lights, perhaps they have some that would work well enough and it won't be too expensive... i know i'm done with generally available light bulbs of all kinds, they just don't give the right kind of light at the right brightness/intensity.

    that all said here are two of the pics. there won't be a link or a page until i do get the kind of color/detail i'm after... yeah, i'm picky... : )

    [ed. note, images removed - some time i'll get this figured out... i want bean pictures!]
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2017
  3. mischief

    mischief Senior Member

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    I dont know, these arty people!!
    Pics look good. Interesting colours, what sort of beans are these?
    How do you use them in your cooking?
     
  4. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    generally they would be a variety of kidney bean.

    i'm not sure they are named varieties or not yet. i have research to do when i get pictures that i'm happy with. i'm not sure if they snuck in with some of the other beans or are cross-breeds.

    i don't have enough of either of those two to eat. next year or the year after i hope to have enough to cook some up.

    when i have only a little space and so many varieties it can be a challenge to figure out which i want to grow further and those i have to wait for another year. and each season i'm getting more varieties as the bumblebees keep working those blossoms.
     
  5. ramdai

    ramdai Junior Member

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    i can't see a problem with the pics, they look brilliant to me, maybe you're seeing some shade differences between the pics and the original colors, but it sure beats anything i'm doing with pictures
     
  6. Manfred

    Manfred Junior Member

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    At songbird: What you need is "mini studio" or "photo tent", to achiev a good distribution of light.
    Using a tripod with cable release in combination with long exposure time and lower light intensity is helpful, too.
     
  7. helenlee

    helenlee Junior Member

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    They are the prettiest beans ever! : )
    If you could get the killdeer to lay their eggs on the beans and the stones & woodchips I think I'd be in colour/texture/pattern heaven ; ) ; )

    Re: your comment about the foil lined box. If my memory serves me correctly (& that is hit & miss) I think I remember that hydro tents are white not foil inside because white disperses/reflects the light better? I use white sheets & cardboard or whatever I can get my hands on to reflect light when I'm photographing things.
     
  8. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    thanks all, : )

    what you see so easily here are lighter colored beans. they do look nice and very close to what i'd like to end up with for those beans (other than the bright points of reflected light from the direct sun).

    the problem is that the darker colored beans have very interesting patterns and colors that aren't being picked up well at all. if i can use reflected light and still get enough intensity that would be good, but the challenge becomes how to do this very inexpensively. i don't have a tripod, so would have to rig a holder of some kind if i were going for longer exposures. at least the camera does support manual settings, delayed shutter release, etc. but it would take me some time to figure it out...
     
  9. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    There's a strong shadow. Multiple light sources or more diffused light would sort that out.
     
  10. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    hmm, multiple suns, ... : ) i have a chunk of scraps from a white sheet to use as a sunblock. now i have to figure out the rest of it before the next sunny and warm enough day. the box can be pulled apart and opened up for more reflective surfaces and more light from different angles. it is lined with shiny foil. the camera manual settings i'll have a go at tonight.
     
  11. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    Fill in flash? Otherwise reflectors at multiple angles.
     
  12. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    part of a sheet held up to block the sun, unfortunately it was too windy and i was out of patience earlier today, but tonight i found out how to do bracketed exposures (generating a series of pictures which can be combined or i can just select the one that works, we'll see...) won't be back taking outdoor pictures again until Friday by the looks of the weather. may try some indoor versions and see how they turn out.
     
  13. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    Digital photography is fun. So much better than when you had to fill a roll and wait for days to see if it was any good. The photography gene seems to run in my family. Each of us has had a peak period - when I was a kid it was my Dad taking holiday snaps that were above and beyond the average. We used to have slide nights and everyone loved seeing Dad's shots - plus he went to exotic places like Peru and Tibet.

    About 10 years ago it was me when I got my first digital SLR. But since I got the middle aged eye thing and need reading glasses I find that I can't tell if things are in focus and I miss the fine details. I have a friend who was a wedding photographer at one stage and he let me be second shot at a wedding once. Lots of fun but boy it's hard work! I ended up getting the shot of the day, because I wasn't busy trying to get all the posed shots that he needed to cover, so I got some really nice informal moments. And girly touches that he hadn't thought of like the detail of the bride's shoes.

    Then it was (and still is) my mum's turn - she's a scuba diver (getting close to 80 and still going hard at life) and takes superb underwater shots.

    My baby sis now has the torch. She's set up a pregnancy and baby photo business as a work form home opportunity while her kids are young and it is starting to take off.

    My daughter has the gift as well. At least with digital I can send her out with the camera - give her an exercise to do - and it doesn't cost me a fortune in processing film! She's about to inherit a Panasonic Lumix from my dad so I'm sure she'll be out there hard at it once again.

    It's quite fun to set yourself particular challenges. The sort of things I have done with my daughter are to take photos of shapes - find me a circle, a square, a triangle in nature - or certain colours or focus on reflections or shadows.
     
  14. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    yes Eco, i enjoy photography much more now without having to develop film.

    sounds like quite the creative clan you've got there! : )

    the eye thing, i have mixed focus eyes (one is near sighted and the other is far sighted).

    the digital camera does save quite a few dollars though, as you noted. before, i'd have to run the film to the store to develop it (20 miles each way) and often many of those pictures weren't worth it. not counting the time when we didn't notice that a whole roll didn't expose, so we developed 30 black pictures. sad too, because that roll was when we found this fantastic ice sculpture in the park, ran back to the house to get the camera and then went back to take the pictures, spent a lot of time getting the right places and pictures, but the film wasn't winding... those would have been fantastic.

    also, i like that it isn't wasting/using materials/chemicals to develop the film. that is a lot of improvement from what it used to be.

    when buying a camera, i was looking at digital SLR, but this camera had most of what i needed at the time for 1/4-1/3 the price. in the six years it has paid for itself several times over.

    i'm about due for a new camera -- this one is gradually putting streaks in more and more pictures. Ma's camera also has gone on the fritz and she's been relying upon me to take pictures for her. i'll have to dig up some of the piggy banks and put the smash on...

    happy shutterbugging. : )
     
  15. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    I'd try looking out for recent models second hand. There are a bunch of crazy folk out their who need the latest and greatest and upgrade every time a new model comes out - particularly professional photographers. You might be able to pick up some well looked after good kit for less than the cost of a new one, and use it forever. I found the original receipt for mine the other day and I bought it in 2004 - which in the world of digital SLR's makes it ancient! It's still going strong.
     
  16. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    recent stuff

    beans, pictures, testing stuff, lighting: other than finishing up the sorting and weighing so i can get ready for spring planting, i've put this all on hold, after pining at some DSLR cameras and looking at how to mod one for taking infrared pics (helping people find heat leaks in their homes would be a great fun side activity in the winter -- but not if the camera costs me a bundle... lo and behold you can mod some DSLR cameras to take infrared... )...

    we've been walking a bit more lately, and the first day we go out for a walk i manage to twist my lower back out. grrr! as i've been through this before it's one of those "this too shall pass" times, but damn i was getting spoiled by feeling almost normal.

    spring is coming along, a few flowers are even showing signs of blooming. most of the snow is gone from the gardens, we walked through yesterday to see what was up. amazingly, they look pretty good, even the gardens i planted the latests with winter rye and winter wheat managed to sprout some under the several feet of snow and with the warm weather days and sunshine they are perhaps able to withstand rain. as this cover cropping was something new for me to try last year to learn more it has done that. the patches i planted a few weeks earlier look much nicer, they stayed green even under the snows. as soon as we had some warm sunny days the plants must capture or generate some heat as they melted off the snow cover much faster than the surrounding barer ground (where the garlic is planted).

    oats do not survive. will have to plant these in the spring to grow them out if i want to try for an oat crop. not sure i will this season. in the few spots i did plant them they're now just a thin film of compacted dead stuff. in between the winter wheat and winter rye. i planned on putting the first of the spring peas/pea pods in those places.

    the bunnies really chewed on some of the cedar trees. i'll be hunting as soon as the ground thaws. i was really hoping the hawks, coyotes and feral cats would get some of them this winter but doesn't look like much of that has happened. *sigh* i hate to have to fence every tree we want to keep from getting chewed on, but that's about what it takes around here between bunnies and deer. the deer have been more active and a large (40+) herd has been wandering into the field to the NNE from here to munch on the winter wheat sprouts. some winters they've thinned any unfenced trees here quite a bit too -- we've been lucky this winter on that front.

    today's chore, to get the outside windows washed...
     
  17. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    spring flowers! yay! the frozen winter time is coming to an end at last. we were able to work outside yesterday for most of the day without being frozen.

    so nice to be out there with the froggies starting to peep and the birds calling.

    went for a short walk to limber up the lower back and then walked around the yard puttering at small things.

    last summer i'd broadcast turnip seeds in several locations to put on a fall cover crop over some bare spots and also hoping some would survive through the winter as they will flower and be able to reseed. the turnips that didn't make it are putting out a wonderful heady aroma of decay and the worms are feasting. i'm adding rutabaga (or otherwise called swedes) to the plantings this year along with pak choi.

    the back strawberry patch has piles of pine needles to spread out. a few of the fences need to be cleared of bean stalks. some spots could use some selective weeding or thinning. plenty of small tasks to do along with pondering where to plant what this season.
     
  18. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    As much as I like my year round gardening, the pleasure I can see you are getting from being able to return to the garden almost makes winter seem worthwhile!
     
  19. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    : ) i like the variety that the seasons bring.

    yet i'm not that picky -- i think i'd also be pretty happy in a place that had more even weather as long as there was enough rain.
     
  20. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    oh yea

    i gotta laugh, some folks have told me that using too many ashes in a garden will kill off plants. so i have this edge of chives which i want to turn under and thought that by dumping a few buckets of ashes on them that by spring they'd be ready to turn under. today i'm out there planting and looked at that spot and the chives are growing up through the ashes and looking very healthy. : ) hahahaha... love it. will have to turn them under the way i did a few years ago to clear another section. i just dig them and turn them and let the sun and rain wash the roots clean and eventually they have to give up.

    today was figuring i should plant some of the early crops (the seed packages say "plant as soon as the ground can be worked"). i put a center row of rutabagas and then put onion seeds on either side. i am not an expert on either of these crops as of yet, but i'm determined to keep trying and learning what works here. the onion seeds are from plants that flowered and were open pollinated here last year so they should be fine. the rutabagas were from the store. i also poked a few types of peas in here or there and scattered more turnip seeds in some empty spaces.

    i wanted to stay out and dig down and bury stuff to raise more of that garden up but i was whupped. my bod is very happy to be gardening again, i can already feel it improving, walked a bit further today.

    bunnies are feasting upon the crocuses as usual. still have enough flowering elsewhere that the bees are visiting them. i'm always glad to see bees. some people freak out whenever they see a bee. i've worked in patches of flowers with bees harvesting nectar and pollen just a few inches away. they don't sting, they just want food, i've only been stung once when i grabbed some seeds to harvest and didn't notice i'd also grabbed a flower with a bee in it by mistake. electrified surprise for sure. for some reason it always amazes me that they are out and working so early in the season. i need to keep spreading the crocus flowers around as with all the chipmunks raiding them i should always try to keep more patches of them going.

    just a bit of rain would be nice. forecast is for some nice warm days coming up and still some frosty nights.
     

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