gardening interests: Composting, Gardening with Kids, Organic Gardening, Ornamental Gardening, Sustainable Living, Vegetables

Member Since: 09/10/2010

recent comments

Re: DIY Heat Mat Speeds Seed Starting


Another really great idea! I built the diy heating mat earlier this evening in my garage. It took me about 45 minutes to build the entire mat, from start to finish. It looks great, and I will start my seeds this weekend, and keep a record of how well they do.

I also followed another of your plans and built the PVC pipe grow light setup. That was super simple, and a whole lot easier than some other designs I was thinking about using.

I wish I could post a picture of them here in the comments section.

All in all, I spent about $60 total on all the supplies that I needed to put these two projects together. So, as I calculate it, that's about a $200 savings from what I would have spent on a heating mat, and light system that would cover two flats of seedlings.

Greg, thanks for the great ideas. I've used several of them in my garden, and at one time, I had even considered posting an article on how to build a compost sifter, and about a week before I was going to post, BAM, there your post was! Awesome! Keep the good ideas coming, as I seem to find a place in my garden for most of them.

Next I'm building the raised bed seat that you posted a while back!

Happy Gardening! I'm so looking forward to this growing season!

Re: Surviving A "Texas-Sized" Drought & Heat Wave

I live in the North Ft. Worth area: I received a drip irrigation system for Christmas last year, but I never put it in place because I was afraid that I wouldn't be out in the garden as much.

After the seemingly endless days of 100+ degree weather, I wished I had put it in place. Some days I'd water in the morning before I went to work, and by the time I would get home from work, the beds would be dry again.

It's definitely going to be installed before next years heat begins again!!

Thanks for the always interesting ideas and tips on how to garden in North Texas!

BTW, whatever happened to your podcast?

Re: QUESTION: Onions

I also live in North Texas, specifically DFW (Alliance Area), and while it was such a sustained freeze (my pipes froze in my house) for 3-4 days, I covered my onion sets with a tarp that I have.

They looked pretty weak for a couple of days after the freeze, but now they're starting to grow nicely. Onions are a good cold hardy vegetable crop, so unless your onions haven't done anything at all since the freeze, leave them in the ground.

If they still look bad and you are unsure, then onion sets are only a couple of dollars, and sometimes 2 or three dollars and some time re-planting are worth the peace of mind.

Hope that helps,


Re: Gardeners, Start Your Seed Search!

Fantastic list! I really appreciate you putting this together. I always enjoy reading the articles you post.

Re: DIY PVC Hoop Bed Cover

When I built my raised beds, I used 1-1/2 inch. 2-hole electric straps to secure a 12-inch piece of 1" PVC pipe inside each corner, and in the mid-section of my raised beds (4x8 raised beds).

That way, all I have to do is take a 10ft. section of 1/2" PVC pipe and put one end in the bracket I made, and then put the other end on the opposite side.

I have three hoops over my raised bed. I then take a cheap blue plastic tarp that I got from harbor freight and throw it over my raised beds when there's frost, or hail, or other damaging weather.

The hoops are tall enough that unless I'm growing corn or some other really tall plant, I can protect them easily in just 5 or 10 minutes.