Flops

Misadventures in Urban Plantsmanship

by Daisy Fencepost

I bought a pineapple guava plant through the mail. I was lured by promises of tropical beauty and exotic flavor. It was around midnight, and I had fallen down an internet rabbit hole of off-the-beaten-path edible shrubs, vines, and other fantastical fruits. My eyes locked onto pineapple guava and I was mesmerized. Apparently, the petals […]

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Misadventures in No ‘Poo

by Daisy Fencepost

Ever since I stopped using shampoo, I’ve tried several different approaches to having presentable hair: apple cider vinegar rinses, brushing it out with a natural bristle brush, and essential oil-baking soda scrubs. After giving up on baking soda after hearing it was too harsh for hair, I’ve relied on hot water and vinegar rinses almost […]

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Row Cover Flop

by Daisy Fencepost

I installed row covers over several beds because the seedlings of my fall/winter crops were getting eaten by bugs, dug up by cats, and stolen by fairies. I pounded 12″ segments of rebar into the ground and curved 1″ pvc plumbing pipe over them. Then I sewed rod pockets on either side of floating row […]

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How NOT To Make Comfrey Fertilizer

by Daisy Fencepost

This post originally had a different title. In the interest of full disclosure which is our informal policy here, after I actually made the fertilizer, I had to add the NOT. It all began well. I cut a lot of comfrey and packed it into a five-gallon bucket. I left it, covered in plastic, for […]

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Freezer Cooking Fail: Waffles

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

  This was my first freezer cooking attempt with my good friend Missy.  We made waffles all day.  There was really nothing wrong with the recipe.  It’s just that we both have *sensory* kids.  Her’s are anti-crispy when it comes to waffles and most anything else.  Mine are anti-wimpy.  so her kids ate the dickens […]

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Freezer Cooking Win…and Fail: Baked Bacon

by Ivory Soap Breakfast

  Those biscuits were awesome, btw, but I will get to those in another post.  Right now we need to talk PIG. My children really latched onto that “World Bacon Shortage” story back in September.  I think it’s a self-fulfilling prophesy, as they are eating bacon like “shortage” meant “extinction.” My husband used to bar tend at […]

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FLOP: Homemade Bake Mix and Whop Biscuits

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

The picture says it all.   It was ALL BAD, y’all. I think my first mistake was the WHITE WHOLE WHEAT. I had the same problem with the homemade pizza crust (the yeasty version, not the bake mix-biscuity version that never fools anyone.)  My husband is an old pizza driver.  We aren’t afraid AT ALL […]

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Corn Flake Injury

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

This is perhaps the most vicious homemaking injury I’ve ever received.  It’s like a paper cut on steroids.  This picture was taken after two days and lots of antibiotic ointment.  It actually goes across three fingers, but it was hard to get the light to go in between my middle and ring finger. So how […]

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Kraut Catastrophe: A Tale of Woe Part II

by Daisy Fencepost

When we last left this saga, I had finally unstuck the lid from Ivory’s Picklemeister.  It was a great feeling. I was so psyched to get the kraut started.  I layered it in the crock with salt, added the inoculant from Ivory’s pickles and enough water to cover, put the lids on, the glass pusher […]

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Kraut Catastrophe: A Tale of Woe Part I

by Daisy Fencepost

As you all know, everything I do always turns out perfectly. What’s that choking sound? Ah, you’ve read our flops. Well, as long as we’re letting it all hang out, you might as well know what happened when I, inspired by Ivory’s fantabulous experiences making naturally fermented pickles, decided to devote my entire crop of […]

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Gone With The Wind

by Daisy Fencepost

In early Fall during a hive inspection I observed the bees had started to consume their own honey so I started feeding them sugar syrup to supplement their stores. In mid-Fall, another inspection revealed the bees had absconded.  No bees, no dead bees.  Nothing at all but an empty hive and several perfectly formed combs. […]

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Floor Fail

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

Here’s a little bedtime story for you lovely readers: Once upon a time, a beautiful princess named Ivory got a wild hair to put in her own laminate floors.  (After all Princess TL did it ten years ago, so how hard could it be?)  She borrowed a chop saw and bought an inordinate amount of […]

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Window Fail

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

Good news!  I got my window fixed.  See that bottom right pane?  It was busted out with a plastic mini-rocket.  Good thing I called my handyman to replace it, huh?  It would have looked SO TACKY otherwise. Unfortunately, less than a month after it was repaired, my youngest killed another pane with a marble and […]

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Homemade Hideous Garden

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

Isn’t that beautiful?  Corn, beans, tomatoes, watermelon…  It’s my neighbors’.  Which makes this even more shameful: Hideous Garden 101 Step 1:  Buy goats and chickens. Step 2:  Have only one fence dividing your backyard. Step 3:  Have husband who hates poo (communist) and likes grilling with friends. Step 4:  Move animals to far side of […]

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And the Squash Wore White

by Daisy Fencepost

I told myself I wasn’t going to grow squash this year.  I have chronicled my squash woes in previous posts, including here, wherein I sustained a SBRI. Every time I try to grow squash I end up sacrificing a gargantuan amount of my limited garden space only to end up with a lot of rotten […]

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That’s a lot of Jute, Ivory

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

What on earth was a I making?  Three kids, no brain cells.  Any ideas?

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Not-Soy Milk

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

This is Ivory’s soymilk maker.  She got it for her b-day from her very understanding parents (a physicist and accountant who poured years of enrichment, travel, and 16 semesters of college/grad school into a child that currently takes great joy in goat poop and regularly twists her ankles throwing chickens.)  Good folks, supporting their aberrant […]

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Watermelon Moment

by Daisy Fencepost

A moment is all it takes to consume this tasty fruit.  Lemme show you: Oh, tiny. So tiny. What went wrong? I’ve never grown a watermelon before. Any advice for next year?

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Making Homemade Tabasco Sauce

by Daisy Fencepost

OR—How To Pepper-Gas Your Entire House So. I got ready for a normal post–here are the ingredients, here it is cooking, here’s the finished product, etc. I took the ingredient photo: Put the ingredients on to simmer for a few minutes. And went outside for a second. Which turned into several minutes. When I walked […]

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Super-Mouse

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

We don’t use the R-word.  It’s a super-mouse.  Or now super-mice.  And it’s all my fault.  Three guesses what’s in those well-sealed buckets and coolers. Something that was in a paper bag that I wondered how all the grains were ‘jumping’ out into the scrap wood stack! (Has to be the kids…) Remember this post?  […]

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Aerogarden

by Ivory Soap Fencepost

After my first aerogarden herb crop–I’ve had trouble growing anything else in there.  But, since we’re past lettuce season, I decided to give it another try.  So far, the five middle cells work, but the two outer ones are still duds. And that nifty mini-garden off to the side (thatI got for $20 at Tuesday […]

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Three Sisters Woes Continue

by Daisy Fencepost

A while back I predicted abject failure from my Three Sisters planting of corn, pole beans, and squash. None of my dire predictions came true, but we still got trouble. The plants themselves have grown well. The corn is tall and tasselling out. The beans are growing up the corn, and the pumpkins are taking […]

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Ivory’s Garden Flop-o-rama

by Daisy Fencepost

Remember when I said that you have to have homemade or, like, five bags of different composts in your raised beds? Well, I know, because this year I didn’t do it! I have NEVER had to fertilize my garden or anything else I’ve grown. But I got lazy. I put in a bunch of new […]

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Three Sisters Flop Alert

by Daisy Fencepost

Who knew the Three Sisters method of planting corn, beans, and squash would get so much press all of the sudden? From community education gardens to the White House, everybody and his dog is planting a Three Sisters garden. How can I put a new spin on it that will make throwing my hat into […]

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A Wager

by Daisy Fencepost

How much do you bet the theoretically red-bloomed verbena on the left don’t make it? I thought they’d rally once I got them in the ground. Maybe….maybe not. Place your bets. Ivory

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Climbing versus Clinging

by Daisy Fencepost

This is a literal flop. That’s about 150 pounds of rose on the ground, I’m guessing. Erect, it reaches 20 feet. It’s not suspended off the ground in that arch you see. There’s just that much plant piled underneath it. It broken two well secured wires IN HALF. And….. Warped an iron trellis. Can you […]

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Mama, my syrup is crunchy!

by Daisy Fencepost

What happens when you’re making syrup for your kids’ pancakes and you let the the stuff cook for, like, ever? MAPLE CANDY. I had never done this before, but when I poured it into the bowl we spoon from, it wouldn’t ‘pour.’ The kids abandoned the pancakes and begged for maple candy all morning.

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Microwave Squash Explosion

by Daisy Fencepost

I blew a flat. I properly vented the thing, but when I squished it after 15 minutes, I thought it still felt 100% hard. So I popped it in for five more minutes and it blew it’s guts all over the place. This pic is even after some cleaning. My fav is the pieces hanging […]

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Cucumber Soap

by Daisy Fencepost

This…. …is a very bad sign. That’s my week old soap clinging to my knife. Hovering above the ping-pong table, like, a foot. Cookie dough soap. And not the cookie smelling kind. The cookie FEELING kind. Watch this… Oh, that’s not good. Maybe after two minutes in the pringles can, but a week? Here’s where […]

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Home Brew

by Daisy Fencepost

This, my friends…. …is the worst beer you’ve ever had. I brewed it myself. I followed the directions. It’s HORRIBLE. I had JUST POURED it when I took this picture. See any fizz? And let me tell you, it’s bitter as a third place beauty queen. I think the problem with the taste lies in […]

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Homegrown Popcorn

by Daisy Fencepost

Hey, look at this really pretty ear of popcorn!!!! Now, look at it again. Kinda tiny, eh? And that’s my ONLY ear. I don’t even think I can call it an ear. Ear-ette. But, I am telling you right now…I’m a-gonna dry that bad boy and try to pop it. Just because. Well, that and […]

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Oh, What a Tangled Web We Weave

by Daisy Fencepost

Oh, wow, now that’s . . . um . . . that’s real interesting. So. . . I’d say that’s a . . . wha’d ya call that exactly? Don’t. Make. Fun. I’ll get the hang of it eventually.

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One Heckuva Sweet Tater

by Daisy Fencepost

It might be a ‘success,’ technically–but, it sure didn’t turn out like I intended. YIKES: Beauregard Tate Caswell 9/24/08 6 lbs 6.4 ounces 30.5 inches Ivory P.S. That’s a VCR tape.

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Potato Famine

by Daisy Fencepost

Growing potatoes in a barrel sounded as easy as. . . shooting fish in one, perhaps. I thought I did everything right–I used certified seed potatoes, I planted them to the suggested depth. I covered them carefully as they grew, up and over the top of the barrel, and watered them judiciously. They looked fine, […]

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The Gravity of Gardening

by Daisy Fencepost

What is that? A crooked row of some experimental type of bean? Nope. Ma bean pole blowed over. (sigh) T.L.

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The Year of the Squash Vine Borer

by Daisy Fencepost

Who can’t grow squash? The prevailing attitude is that you plant your squash, turn and run before it overtakes you, and retreat to the kitchen to concoct increasingly unconventional recipes to use up the overwhelming quantity of squash produced. Neighbors cross the street to avoid you and your grocery bags full of excess zucchini and […]

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When Life Gives You Squash

by Daisy Fencepost

Hey, that looks like a pretty healthy butternut squash! What’s the problem? Why is it in the flops? Because it was supposed to be potatoes and it’s . . . not. T.L.

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The Leaning Trellis of Tomatoes

by Daisy Fencepost

Whoa! I’m almost used to it now, since I know it isn’t about to break. It has looked exactly like this for months now. I thought I had such a sturdy trellis for my tomato plants–before they actually started to grow up on to it. I don’t know what I was thinking, but I obviously […]

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