Shredding cornstalks, digging corn stumps, and removing pond fish for the winter

in gardening •  9 months ago  (edited)

Hello, and welcome to my page!

This post is for @simplymike 's garden journal challenge 2019. You can read about that here.

Last week turned out to be a pretty good week to get several things done around the yard. The weather was decent instead of cold and rainy, so I had to take advantage of the nice days to get stuff done.

I had a big pile of corn stalks waiting for me to run through the chipper/shredder, and I finally got around to doing it.

I set up the shredder close to the pile to make the process easier, and I set up a backstop to keep the shredded material from going too far as it was getting blown out of the chute. I filled the tank on the shredder with gas, started it up, and got on with the job. I was expecting to run out of gas before running out of corn stalks, but that didn't happen. Since the machine was still going when I ran out of corn stalks, I started shredding leaves from the big maple tree in the back yard. After 4 garbage cans full of leaves, the machine was still running, but I was pooped, so I shut down the machine for the day.
I had a nice thick pile of corn mulch when I was done, topped with some leaf mulch. As you can see in the background, we had a fire going in the fire ring. Sitting by the fire is a good way to relax after a busy day.

This is the corn stubble that was next on the list to work on. It's like a patch of punji sticks, you wouldn't want to trip and fall in there...

I started working on digging out the corn roots the next day. That kind of work is really hard on my lower back, so I had to take it slow on the process. Digging them loose with the spading fork is easy enough, but pulling them out and knocking the dirt off the root ball is not so easy on the back.


I managed to get 5 rows of corn stubble, aka punji sticks, dug out of the garden that day before I had to quit. After I was done digging, I spread some of the pile of mulch over the bare ground where the corn had been.

I have quite a bit of the garden covered in several inches of mulch now. It will be interesting to see what it looks like in the spring.

While I was digging out punji sticks, my housemate, Teresa was pumping the water out of the pond in the front yard. Pumping the water out of the pond is the only way to be able to catch the pond fish to transfer them to the winter tank.

Once the water level is low enough, the fish can't get away from the net and we can net them out. We were using a big cooler to hold the fish after catching them.

All of the big fish got dumped into the tank in the greenhouse that will serve as the over winter tank for them. I covered the setup of that tank in a previous post.

After all the fish were out of the pond, we refilled the pond by emptying our 2 big rainwater storage tanks into the pond. That way, all that water doesn't just get dumped out onto the street and wasted. There was a lot of baby fish in the pond this year, I separated the colorful ones from the drab ones, and put all of the drab ones back into the pond. I don't know if they'll survive the winter, but I guess I'll know in the spring. I have nowhere to keep all those fish over the winter, so putting them back in the pond seemed like a better thing than other options. I'm planning on putting some of the little colorful fish in my aquarium to see how well they do. It seems like it's pretty easy to accumulate too many goldfish when they lay eggs in the pond every year.

Well, that's all I have for this post, thanks for stopping by to check it out!


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Awesome that you can create your own mulch!
Looks like there was some hard work going on!

Thanks for joining!

That corn stubble looked like a booby trap out of Indiana Jones. Just need to navigate or while running from a huge, rolling boulder and it'll be authentic adventure! 😆

That mulch looks like good stuff. You've just reminded me I still haven't put my sweetcorn seeds in. It's a hot day tomorrow, so I'll likely have to wait until Friday now.

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Good luck with your garden this year! :-)


This post has been manually curated, resteemed
and gifted with some virtually delicious cake
from the @helpiecake curation team!

Much love to you from all of us at @helpie!
Keep up the great work!


Manually curated by @torico.

@helpie is a Community Witness.

Gosh it never occurred to me to over winter fish. Mad. We just dont get that cold here! I keep thinking about @wildhomesteading s tip to just let roots rot in ground.. chopping off base would be easier on back. @wildhomesteading what are your thoughts?

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