Well, ask and you shall receive Matriachy. Today's post will be on soil block makers. Soil blocks take the place of peat pellets or seedling pots. They are compressed blocks of soil. One of the benefits I've read about them is that unlike peat pellets, roots don't leave the block and go everywhere. Instead they turn back around the stay nice and cosy inside the moist soil. Then, when it comes to transplanting, you simply burry the block. Simple as pie!
So, a soil block maker, is a tool to make soil blocks. Duh, right? Well, it does this by compressing soil and creating a divot for the seed to be planted. You can see and buy them here.
I want one of them for sure. You can make four blocks at once. But, John came across a home made one and made his own from left over prescription bottles. He posted about them on his blog and on GW. He did a great job of describing how to build one yourself, but for some reason I couldn't get it. So instead of humming a few more bars, he graciously offered to make one for me! Sure enough. I got it the other day. I'm excited to take it for a test spin this weekend to plant some broccoli and cauliflower.
Tonight I was checking out my tomatoes, to see if they'd germinated. They hadn't by the way. This is where I get impatient. How long to tomato seeds take to germinate at 70 degrees?
Ok, that's not the point, the point is that I saw something that caught my eye. Prescription bottles are a good size, but soil block makers come in various block sizes. Look what I came up with...
If I can figure out how to make one of those, I could make a bigger size for the next level. This bottle is 3 inches and I have another that's 3.5 inches. Ok, it's just a thought. The construction's pretty easy, except for the plunger. I can't figure that out. Guess more research is in order, hehe.
I tried to find a video of the use of soil block makers. I know I've seen them before, but YouTube wasn't being cooperative. Maybe a helpful reader will like one for us. It's late and today was a bad day. Hope this all makes sense.
Lastly, I talked a long time ago about my malfunctioning thermostat. It won't program anymore, so I have to turn it up and down manually. I've done pretty good at only turning to 70 when it's cold at night then turning it down to 66 the rest of the time to save energy. A local reader contacted me saying that they were replacing theirs and it still worked, so I could have it. Well, today I met up with Jennie and she handed me a good-as-new digital touch-screen thermostat. It's very cool! She's so nice and generous, not only because she gave me the thermostat. I met her at a community center just outside Downtown Seattle. She volunteers there every week doing taxes with United Way. VERY COOL! Of course, I feel like a heel. I saw that same opportunity and was too busy to volunteer. She wasn't. Bravo Jennie! And thank you!
Take care, and enjoy your garden!