How To Use Rabbit Manure In The Garden

(soft jazz) (soft jazz) – [Curtis Smith] I’m Curtis Smith and I want to thank you for sending your comments
and questions to us, we try and answer some of these questions, we can’t do them all, but this week, we’ve got a
question from Michael in Socorro who says his lilac has something that looks like a flower
stalk and flower buds, and he wonders is it
going to flower again? Well Michael, at this time of the year we’ve got seed capsules
forming here, after flowering. Some years we have more,
some years we have less, some years we may have none, but if you’ll look at this, you’ll see that the old flowers are here mixed with these new seed capsules, and they’re going to be
drawing energy from the plant, the plant’s going to be feeding them, and we really don’t want that cause we’re not after the seed
production on this plant. What we want is
development of new flowers. So what we ought to do is
prune that off back at a bud, or some stems, some good
healthy stems below that, so I just cut it off here, and that then redirects the energy into these buds right here which will produce flowers next year. Joni in Albuquerque
writes to us and tells us that she bought a house last fall and saw that it had an apple
tree and that was a good thing, but she noticed the
apples have been falling from the apple tree all summer and wonders what’s going on. Well Joni, it’s not uncommon for apples to be falling from an apple tree. Early in the year, a lot of
very small apples will fall, this is one that fell over a month ago, and some fell even before this. It’s real common that the apples, as the weather changes, as
it gets drier and windier, begin falling from the tree, as the tree compensates for
the changing weather condition, so as it gets hotter and drier, it’ll drop some apples, it’ll self-thin. So that’s one of the things that happens, but later on as the apples get larger, we’ve got a second situation going on, and that’s this one right here. We’ve got apples that
have worm holes in them, and so we have to be very aware
that we’ve got wormy apples. And in this situation, if we look at it we’ll
see what’s happening. We split this open here, we’ll see how the worms have been feeding around the core of the apple, and it looks all moldy,
it’s not very pretty. There’s apple here that
we could still eat, a lot of people would
just cut that part out, but we need to be aware that there’s a little bit of hazard with this. So we’ve got wormy apples. The coddling moth is
already left the apple, that’s this emergence hole, this is not the entry hole, this is how the moth came out. So the caterpillar came
out, fell to the ground, it’ll go away and pupate,
form a cocoon somewhere and then next year it’ll be a
moth that goes and lays an egg on the little tiny developing fruit, which will then bore into here, feed around the core, then emerge somewhere, sometimes
out at the blossom end, sometimes along the side, and that will cause the
fruit to be falling, but some will remain on the tree, depends on how badly injured
they are by the worms. Carmen in Santa Fe writes
that her kids are in 4-H and raised rabbits, she wants to know if they can use the rabbit
manure in their garden. Carmen, that’s actually one
of the really good manures. There are a lot of different
kinds of manure we use cow manure and horse manure, they’ve got their pluses and minuses, the rabbit manure though
is one of the better ones, it’s not gonna burn things, it’s very beneficial to the plants, it can be applied directly into the garden and worked into the soil,
or you can compost it. One of the things you
want to remember though is other pet manures may not be as good. Dogs and cats, which are carnivores, produce a manure that you do
not want to put in the garden, that’s one that you want to dispose of, some of the people I’ve talk to say the best thing to do is just flush it. Don’t put it in the compost,
don’t put it in the garden. But this one right here, is really good, you see the round pellets,
which are the rabbit manure, and it’s mixed with this
lighter color material, which is the feed pellets, and rabbits have a tendency to
turn over their feed dishes, so this alfalfa, which
is high in nitrogen, is mixed with it, so you’ve
got a good nitrogen source in this fertilizer, so this
is a good one to dig in. In the middle of the summer, I think I’d use it very carefully, but in the spring when
you’re preparing the garden, in the fall as you prepare the garden, just dig it into the soil,
it’ll do a good job there, then take any surplus, put
it in the compost pile, this will help you when you’re composting. What I do in my compost is put
it over the surface at first and let it sit there a while
as I water the compost pile, and then later turn it with the other material that’s composting, so that it becomes part of the compost and it’s a good component
of homemade compost. Alicia in Grants writes
that she has a lot of weeds in her yard and garden and
wondered if she could eat ’em, she says that they’re growing
better than the vegetables. You know, there are some
weeds that we can eat, there are others we shouldn’t eat. Some of the ones that we can eat though are the red root pigweed, here in New Mexico is
often called Caletes, uh, it’s a plant that’s pretty good to eat if you know how to use it. So you wanna find somebody
who uses it traditionally and get information from them. You wanna make sure you
get the right plant, it has a red root, and that’s why it’s
called redroot pigweed. This particular plant right
here is already in flower, and it’s got high levels
of oxalates in the leaves, so this would not be good, but this younger one right here
is just leaving that stage, so it’s still edible,
so you could use this, and so the Caletes is one that is useful. Another one in New Mexico
is called Verdolaga, it’s called Portulaca in English, and it’s a prostrate plant
that grows flat on the ground. Now, it’s okay to eat, it
kinda has a sour taste, can be used in soups or in salads. One of the things though
you want to make sure is that you don’t get the
one that has the white sap. If you break this one open, you notice it does not have a white sap, so you look for that,
this will be very fleshy, even the leaves are very fleshy. So the white sap is in spurge, this one’s okay to eat, spurge is not. (soft jazz) (soft jazz)

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