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Crystal Hartman I realize Michael used to keep a log of nursery activities accomplished in a volunteer day. Simply put I have had to pick my battles and have not had time to keep that tradition going. I think I can takeSee More a stab at it now though, so here is the first in a series of brief activity blogs I like to call the EPP Captain's Log (OK I admit to being a Trekkie.) I wonder if Michael will come back? Perhaps I should call myself the Acting Captain? Anyways, here goes:

Plant Date: 3-1-15
Trained a new ensign today by the name of Gabriela Waschewsky on how to run the Mother Ship. While Commander Jamey Sadler and I took the Silver shuttle to High Springs to rescue the S.S. Plant Trailer, she and Nancy Hendler took the helm. With the impending spring bloom, there is much activity aboard the ship. Here is a short list of current ongoings.

Gardens are mostly plowed (many thanks Bill for loaning your tiller!) Many plants are started in the greenhouse. Evelyn Giansanti Reedy started pigeon pea, maypop passion fruit and moringa a couple weeks ago. About a week ago I started some Molokhiya, India lettuce and roselles. Today Gabriela and Nancy planted more roselles for the upcoming orchard, uppotted some Cedar Key mulberry clippings, cleaned some sprinkler heads and swept up some spots in the greenhouse. This Thursday we will be focusing on cleaning the ground cloths and sprinkler heads and finishing uppotting the mulberry.

Hartman, out.See Less
02.03.2015 at 02:54 amLike
Karen Sherwood Great work you all, glad to hear of things moving along!02.03.2015 at 11:19 am4
Crystal Hartman Hey Gainesville, EPP needs your help. We suffered a loss of plant stock!

The fridge that contained certain EPP plant stock malfunctioned and froze some items. Has anyone got any GA jet sweet potatoes
See More and/or turmeric?

I think everything else is fine. I do have some turmeric that can be planted, but need more. Our sweet potatoes completely froze.

Any help is greatly appreciated.See Less
28.02.2015 at 12:47 amLike
Crystal Hartman Family afternoon at the Nursery is tomorrow, Feb. 26 at the usual 4-6 time. I am really hoping to see some of you there.

Seriously, I hope some of you come because there have been mostly none of you coming
See More out. 2 or 3 people would be great. Consider this a finger wag from your EPP Nursery Mom. :)See Less
25.02.2015 at 07:25 pmLike
Crystal Hartman Green Sunday is TOMORROW Feb. 22 from noon to four. I will be out there for the first hour showing Evelyn the ropes, after which the reins will be in her hands for the day. Hoping to see some of you outSee More there. Thank you Evelyn!See Less21.02.2015 at 11:25 pmLike
Karen Epple sorry I missed this week my birthday, hope to make the nextone.25.02.2015 at 05:13 am
Kayla Susan Sosnow Hi, do you still have the Cherry of the Rio Grande (Eugenia aggregata) that's on your website? How does it do in our area? Are the cherries actually sweet? Do you have any other cherries? Thanks!22.02.2015 at 02:42 amLike
Michael Adler We had some when I left. They were very small. We had some more in very small pots that need to be up-potted. I seem to remember they were pretty good, not real cherries though. They grow slowly and usually lose their crop to a late frost. I was going to respond to your post about barbados cherries. I wasn't too keen on them when I tried them, and I think they're tropicals. Surinam cherries are also tripical, but will survive in warmer parts of Gainesville, but don't fruit, since they have to regrow from severe frost damage each year. We ordered a couple real cherries (like bing) from Willis Orchards, that supposedly have a low enough chill hour requirement that they should fruit here, if they can handle our humidity etc. We are going to plant them hopefully this spring and see how they do. You are welcome to order some from there and try them out too.22.02.2015 at 04:53 am1Kayla Susan Sosnow I saw those on their website. But when I Google cherry tree Zone 8 there are dozens of varieties available on a half dozen websites. It's overwhelming. I don't know how to sort out the truth from the lies.22.02.2015 at 05:02 amview 4 more commentsMichael Adler Zone 8 may not be good enough, especially if that's the edge of it's suitability zone. Look for something that lists the chill hours. Our area usually gets between 400 and 550, though it varies by location and we can expect a general warming trend. Lower chill hour requirements will still flower here, but may flower too soon, so may the later hour varieties since we seem to get warm spells during the winter, that confuses everything. It's hard to say, really, and it's very hard to accurately measure chill hour requirement. It's not well understood and there are even very divergent models for measuring chill hour credits. There also doesn't seem to be a standard source for chill hours for various varieties. I've looked into peaches a lot and find listings for the same varieties that vary 200 chill hours or more. Anyway, I found this website and it has some tasty looking trees I'd like to try. I LOVE rainier cherries. Anything 500 hours or less is probably worth trying. http://www.tytyga.com/Cherry-Trees-s/1834.htm22.02.2015 at 05:28 amKayla Susan Sosnow I saw that website too, & I figure on getting a variety that would be good to zone 9 in order to be safe on the chilling requirements. From what I've seen, Rainier just misses the mark because its only good to zone 8, not zone nine. Anyway I wish it wasn't going to take forever to figure this out! Thanks, Michael.22.02.2015 at 07:07 amMichael Adler make sure not to get one that needs a pollinizer, without also getting a pollinizer. Some are self-fertile, but probably no the best ones.22.02.2015 at 07:08 amKayla Susan Sosnow Right, but I didn't know self-fertile ones weren't as good. Why?22.02.2015 at 03:17 pm
Crystal Hartman EPP (and myself) need assistance! Please contact me if you are able to help with any of the following:

1) April 18, 2015. Spring Sustainability and Natural Foods Gala at Crones Cradle.

2) April 25 and/or
See More 26. Sow it Grows Farm Tour at the EPP nursery

3)This Sat. OR Sun. (2-21 OR 2-22) for about 4 hours to shovel horse sweepings (2 hours will be driving to and from High Springs). Woohoo!See Less
20.02.2015 at 06:09 pmLike
Gabriela Waschewsky Can't do 1 or 3, but I can help w/2 on the 25th.21.02.2015 at 12:44 am1

Sugar Cane

Sugar Cane (Saccharum officinarum) is a perennial grass species with a sugary stem that can be chewed on, or refined into sugar. In North Florida, it has historically been used to make (cane) syrup.         

It enjoys moist soil that is high in organic matter, and if you can get it, clay. I have been advised to fertilize it with “tobacco” fertilizer with an N-P-K of 4-8-12.  If you just use lots of manure, you should be ok.  Make sure you have plenty of lime in the soil too.

In our area, sugar cane is historically harvested as the first frost of the year approaches. 

The leafy area on the top and the old leaves are stripped from the canes, and the canes are buried under piles of this refuse (called shucks) to keep them safe from the frost until they can be ground for juice, and the juice boiled into syrup.            

The roots will re-sprout the following spring. Apparently the crop is best the first or second or third years after planting, but yields decline after that, and by about seven years tops, the roots should be dug up, and the crop replanted. Propagating is easy.  Use whole canes or pieces that include at least a whole internode section (with a node at both ends), and plant them in trenches about six inches deep.
SugarCane
























More photos on Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/search?sort=relevance&text=Saccharum%20officinarum

2 comments to Sugar Cane

  • Jeannie

    I just wanted to let you know that it is fantastic grilled, too. You shouldn’t swallow it, of course, but the flavor is worth the trouble! Cooked in oil, it tastes like any other delectable grilled vegetable, since what makes other grilled veggies so tasty is their caramelized sugars. Cooked in butter, the flavor leans more toward a toasted marshmallow. They make fantastic BBQ skewers!

  • thanks for the great tip jeannie!

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