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Willow rooting and plant loving

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  • Robert Monie
    Hi Deb, Thank for the expanded view of your gardening. I had heard of rose growers using willow twig tea to help root the rose bushes but have never tried it
    Message 1 of 6 , Jun 28, 2003
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      Hi Deb,

      Thank for the expanded view of your gardening. I had heard of rose growers using willow twig tea to help root the rose bushes but have never tried it myself. These are the kinds of useful details that can help us gardeners out. The "usual sources" that caution against putting fennel next to other plants have never seen your fennel or mine either! Maybe their fennel doen't like other plants, but maybe their dog doesn't eat greens either. For novices on this list it might be good to explain that when you "lasagna" the ground to start a new garden, you are sheet mulching a la the directions given by Patricia Lanza in her two Lasagna gardening books. When I double dig I get more weeds than when I "lasagna" so I stopped double digging. Sheet mulching is, of course, closer to Fukuoka-style gardening.

      Though plants never ask what church you go to or whether you are a neo-Kantian or a decontructionist philosophically, they do know if you like them. They get, as you suggest, a direct sense of whether you are on their side on not, and definitely grow better if you are. I assume that you also talk to them, as I often do.

      If you suspect that your ground might be contaminated with toxins, you should let the chemists go to work, analyze it and tell you for sure. It's always best to know exactly what you're up against instead of working in the dark.

      Best wishes,

      Bob Monie. southest Louisiana


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    • Jon Wood
      ... wrote: Hi Deb, Thank for the expanded view of your gardening. I had heard of rose growers using willow twig tea to help root the rose bushes but have never
      Message 2 of 6 , Jun 30, 2003
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        --- In fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com, Robert Monie <bobm20001@y...>
        wrote:
        Hi Deb,

        Thank for the expanded view of your gardening. I had heard of rose
        growers using willow twig tea to help root the rose bushes but have
        never tried it myself. These are the kinds of useful details that
        can help us gardeners out. Best wishes,

        Bob Monie. southest Louisiana
        *******************
        Mr. Monie: I've used willow water most of my life. In place of the
        white powder rooting compound (which used to be made from willows, by
        the way), and also as a first aide to plants under certain
        circumstances. Birch water can also be used if there's no willows
        growing nearby.

        I've tried all kinds of willow, and the (nearly wild) river or creek
        willow works best for me. And twisted willow works next best, then
        weeping willow: pussy willow lacks something, obviously, as I can't
        get anything to root in it: it turns to slime before it/they root.

        Some say that willow water holds not more magic than does using plain
        water with nothing added. For me, this just doesn't work: I've tried
        it. I've even run experiments using various methods of "popular"
        rooting compounds, and still the willow water works best (for me in
        USA Kentucky zone 6B).

        There's talk out in our hobby about honey now being the super duper
        rooting compound to use for rooting. I am trying it here at The Last
        Penny Farm this season. I'm using local hive honey-raw honey, from a
        neighbors hives. So far, I'm not impressed using honey for rooting
        anything. The willow.....so far....exceeds anything honey has been
        able to do for me. But I shall continue my experiments for the
        remainder of this season. Just in case of.

        Jon Wood-Natural (organic)gardener
      • Robert Monie
        Hi Jon, No surprise that the wild willow would work best; it s probably the most concentrated source of the rooting hormone. . Wild plants in
        Message 3 of 6 , Jul 1, 2003
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          Hi Jon,

          No surprise that the wild willow would work best; it's probably the most concentrated source of the rooting hormone. .

          Wild plants in general usually have more medicinal or chemical value than food value (at least for humans.) That's another reason to keep the wild stuff wild, and domesticate the plants we eat. We don't want the wild plant to lose its potency or the food plant to become too potent either. Like plants, people need the right nutrients at the right time, a nice, steady flow rather than a nutrient flood or nutrient (and anti-nutrient) dump.

          Honey is usually more than just honey, depending on which blossom the honey bee decides to buzz. Used to make beer, honey comes in "varietals," just like grapes for wine-making. It's possible that people getting good results rooting plants with honey are (knowingly or unknowingly) using varietals containing rooting hormone. One can look at the list of honey varietals available and guess just which varied and useful chemical properties they might have:

          Honey comes in at least these varieties: acacia, alfalfa, alfalfa/clover, apple blossom,. aster, avocado, basswood, blackbutton sage, black locust, blackberry, blueberry, borage, Brazilan pepper, buckwheat, canola, cat's claw, chestnut, cotton, cranberry, dandelion, desert blosson, dzildzilche, eucalyptus, fireweed, gallbarry. palmetto, goldenrod, Hawaiian, Christmas berry, huckleberry, knapweed, lavender, linden, loosetrife, macadamia, manuka, manzanita, mesquite, mint, mixed flower, mixed sage, orange blossom, pumpkin, purple sage, raspberry, red clover, rosemary, safflower, snowberry, sourwood, soybean, star, thistle, sumac, sunflower, sweet clover, tahonal, tallow, thyme, tulip poplar, vetch, white Dutch clover, white sweet clover, wildflower.
          For more, see http://www.honeylocator.com

          The buckwheat varietal scores the highest in the kind of antioxidants good for humans.One would expect the blackberry, blueberry, cranberry, raspberry, rosemary, and thyme honey to also be high in beneficial antioxidants.

          From the acaica, alfalfa, eucalyptus, and black locust varieties, however, (considering the complex concentration of toxins in these plants), one would expect a very different (and possibly not so good for humans) chemical content. It would be fun (though maybe expensive) to experiment with many different honeys to test their rooting abilities.

          As a rather determined vegan, I don't eat honey, but so what? Others who like it should.
          I see no problem using it (or willow water) for rooting plants.

          Thanks for the post, Jon. It's always good to hear from people growing plants in their garden. Have you ever tried to grow any grains in Kentucky? I'm thinking especially of rye, but also wheat, millet, barley, and oats. If you have grown grains can you tell us how they interacted with the grasses of Kentucky?


          Bob Monie, southeast Louisiana

          Jon Wood <backwaterjon@...> wrote:
          --- In fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com, Robert Monie <bobm20001@y...>
          wrote:
          Hi Deb,

          Thank for the expanded view of your gardening. I had heard of rose
          growers using willow twig tea to help root the rose bushes but have
          never tried it myself. These are the kinds of useful details that
          can help us gardeners out. Best wishes,

          Bob Monie. southest Louisiana
          *******************
          Mr. Monie: I've used willow water most of my life. In place of the
          white powder rooting compound (which used to be made from willows, by
          the way), and also as a first aide to plants under certain
          circumstances. Birch water can also be used if there's no willows
          growing nearby.

          I've tried all kinds of willow, and the (nearly wild) river or creek
          willow works best for me. And twisted willow works next best, then
          weeping willow: pussy willow lacks something, obviously, as I can't
          get anything to root in it: it turns to slime before it/they root.

          Some say that willow water holds not more magic than does using plain
          water with nothing added. For me, this just doesn't work: I've tried
          it. I've even run experiments using various methods of "popular"
          rooting compounds, and still the willow water works best (for me in
          USA Kentucky zone 6B).

          There's talk out in our hobby about honey now being the super duper
          rooting compound to use for rooting. I am trying it here at The Last
          Penny Farm this season. I'm using local hive honey-raw honey, from a
          neighbors hives. So far, I'm not impressed using honey for rooting
          anything. The willow.....so far....exceeds anything honey has been
          able to do for me. But I shall continue my experiments for the
          remainder of this season. Just in case of.

          Jon Wood-Natural (organic)gardener



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        • Art Petrzelka
          ... We have a lot of black and silver willow here along the creek bottoms, especially if cattle don t graze them down. What species of willow do you favor? For
          Message 4 of 6 , Jul 4, 2003
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            On Tuesday 01 July 2003 00:53, Jon Wood wrote:
            > Mr. Monie: I've used willow water most of my life. In place of the
            > white powder rooting compound (which used to be made from willows, by

            We have a lot of black and silver willow here along the creek bottoms,
            especially if cattle don't graze them down.

            What species of willow do you favor? For that matter, where are you located?
            --
            Art Petrzelka
            Amana, Iowa
          • Jon Wood
            ... What species of willow do you favor? For that matter, where are you located? -- Art Petrzelka Amana, Iowa ************** the closest thing I found at
            Message 5 of 6 , Jul 5, 2003
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              --- In fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com, Art Petrzelka <art@c...> >
              What species of willow do you favor? For that matter, where are you
              located?
              --
              Art Petrzelka
              Amana, Iowa
              **************
              the closest thing I found at www.altavista.com on the "river willow"
              was:
              http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/trees/pages/blackwillow.html

              I'm in USA Kentucky: zone 6B
              Jon
            • Art Petrzelka
              ... Very helpful. In fact, I now know that I asked a loaded question! :-) I ll have to try a few rootings with the bark and see how it goes. I ll run my own
              Message 6 of 6 , Jul 5, 2003
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                On Saturday 05 July 2003 03:55, Jon Wood wrote:
                > the closest thing I found at www.altavista.com on the "river willow"
                > was:
                > http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/trees/pages/blackwillow.html

                Very helpful. In fact, I now know that I asked a loaded question! :-)

                I'll have to try a few rootings with the bark and see how it goes. I'll run my
                own experiments on which unclassified variety is best!

                Comments on the Web page:
                The comment on the multiplicity of unclassified species helped explain why I
                couldn't decide whether a specific tree was black or silver willow, and why a
                business nearby prefers willow from a certain section of the Iowa River for
                making furniture and baskets.

                In reference to erosion control, it does hold the soil, but it ends up routing
                the stream around it, so that the stream starts winding and making oxbows. It
                appears to me to keep the depth down at the expense of the total area
                covered. But you do get more species in the marsh that is created by the
                willows.

                They are truly spongy trees, soft but strong, in opposition to a boxelder,
                which is brittle and weak. The height of futility is trying to burn a dead
                willow log. It just will not sustain combustion.
                --
                Art Petrzelka
                Amana, Iowa
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