Backyard Nursery 2020
Each fall - for the past 20 years - I gather a few hundred acorns. Mostly from the streets, parks, and on my way to work at the UW-Madson campus. This spring I am digging two-year seedlings (~100) so I have room in the seedbed for the acorns collected last fall.
Due to the Corona Virus, we are uncertain how soon we will be able to travel to the farm so I am potting up these seedlings and will tend them in my garden for one more summer.
More about this bottom screen:
The lower screen must be about an inch above the soil surface; too low and the squirrels will reach through it and pull up the seed -- actually eat it through the screen. Too high and the young sprout puts out it's first leaves below the screen and the whole seedling scrunches up and eventually gets shaded out or 'suffocated'.
More about this upper screen box:
This top section box was originally made to protect the seedlings after the first year of growth. After one season the new plants are about 6" tall and I like to remove the bottom screening (after the leaves drop in the fall). At this point there is still enough of the acorn attached to the seedling for the squirrels to eat. (At least they think there is and they will pull up the plant to see for sure.) So I've added this upper box/screen for the second summer.
You may ask why don't I just leave the bottom screen on for two years?
Thank you for asking. I'll have to think about that.