It seems my reputation for welcoming stuff other people regard as useless is now well established. My parents refurbished their deck over the summer, replacing the old boards with rot-resistant cedar planks. My dad had set aside all the end pieces he trimmed off, none of them more than about 12 inches long. There were about two dozen of them. He asked me recently if I wanted them. I said yes immediately and with such enthusiasm that he asked me what my plans for them were. With this year's winter squash crop failure much on my mind, I'm already dreaming of a bumper crop next year. Good pieces of rot-resistant wood will be ideal to place under next year's developing squash fruits. They take such a long time to reach ripeness that moisture from the ground has plenty of opportunity to hasten spoilage. These little pieces of cedar wood will be just the right size for tucking under next year's crop as they grow. Redwood would do nicely too if you happened to come across it.
Cedar is expensive, and I'd never buy a new piece of wood just for the purpose of cutting it up into short lengths. But the chance to put this scrap wood to good use was far too good to miss. I love all the many ways that the garden turns trash into treasure.
I live on a 2/3 acre homestead in a residential neighborhood. A major goal is to demonstrate how much food a non-expert can produce in my particular climate and hardiness zone, with the soils native to my immediate area. We have gardens of annual and perennial plants, keep laying hens and honey bees, and regularly bite off more than we can chew. Another major goal is to pay off our mortgage as fast as possible. Here I blog about frugality, self-reliance, gardening, cooking and baking, food preservation, practical skills, half-baked experiments, and preparing to thrive in a lower-energy future.