Monday, June 9, 2014

Spring time common garden update

We have successfully planted 6 of our native species in all 3 of our common gardens!  Two grasses (Sorghastrum elliottii and Schizachyrium scoparium), two composites (Pityopsis graminifolia and Solidago odora), and two legumes (Tephrosia virginiana and Lespedeza capitata).  Now, let's see if we can get them established.  

It has been surprisingly difficult to go from this...

Fabric, with irrigation, installed at Coastal REC in Charleston
to this...

Planted Solidago after approximately 1 month at CREC.
and this...

Planted Pityopsis after approximately 1 month at CREC.

Thus far, the grasses have only struggled along, but the composites are doing well at all of our gardens (as you can see above).  We will have to wait and see how the legumes do since we just planted them.

Sorghastrum seedling at PDREC approximately 5 months old and just weeded.

Solidago at PDREC after 2 months in the ground.

Pityopsis at CREC after 2.5 months in the ground.

Tephrosia planted May 14th at CREC.

Lespedeza planted May 29 at SREC.

Weeding will probably be the most demanding chore during this establishment phase of our common garden study.

It may not always look like it, but we do have seedlings under all those weeds.

Heat, humidity, wind, rain, and lightning are all expected hazards, but uninvited guests and freak storms are what keep us on our toes.

A black widow in the weeds at the base of one of our grass plants at SREC.

Damaged leaflets of a Tephrosia plant at SREC, most likely caused by a hail storm the previous evening.

We found teeth marks on this section of irrigation tubing at PDREC.