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 Post subject: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 5:50 pm 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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Location: 5 mi east of philly
my plums ripened all of a sudden and i realised i didn't have a way to get at the ones up high other than shaking the tree. (it's my first year with tree fruit. yay!! but i was fully unprepared.) so i drove down to agway (which was 14 miles away) and they were closed for a family emergency. darn. so i was searching on amazon for them and was all set to buy one and then i google searched them and saw some DIY ones. ok! so i figured i'd try the soda bottle one. i had an aquafina bottle all ready (which is good cause it's smaller than the 2 liter bottle which would have been overkill.

http://doablesurvival.blogspot.com/2014 ... icker.html

i boiled some water and placed the bottle and cap in there to soften it a bit so my xacto would cut it easier, and a minute later i have my lightweight fruit picker. hopefully i have some ready to pick tomorrow. (i might need to alter my design slightly. we'll see.)

i may have cut the hole out of the cap too large. the pole screws in, but it wobbles a bit. i might mold a more tight screwy bit into the neck of the bottle. maybe with plumber's putty.

this is better than the bulky and unwieldy basket type one. (especially since my plums are so small and delicate.

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2015 5:26 am 
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That is such an excellent idea!! Thank you for sharing! I didn't even know these things existed, but it will sure make life easier than climbing rickety ladders to get to the top this year!

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2015 8:41 am 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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yay! i'm glad i could help. :-)

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:58 am 
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Seagull of the PPK
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Location: Bananaland
this looks like it can be tweaked for mulberries--- high up mulberries are my bane, and smacking the tree usually just ends up with a sheet full of pissed-off spiders and caterpillars. thanks!

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2015 10:44 am 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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the PVC type would be great for mulberries. i'm going to make one of those for my boysenberries. (much better than spending my junes with prickles in my arms.)

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2015 3:44 pm 
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here's my picker. i used an extendable pole from home depot's cleaning section. i also used some expired siliconized acrylic caulk. it still hasn't dried and it's been almost 2 days. bad choice. i should have used epoxy or something else that dries solid. (and doesn't necessarily need air exposure to solidify) whoops! i also sharpied around the hole to make it easier to see the opening.
Spoiler: show
Image

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:20 am 
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Seagull of the PPK
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hello plums!!

i have to ask about your collards- are those the famous tree collards? and what are the plants in the pots to the left in the foreground?

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2015 8:42 am 
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no, those are just regular collards. (i'm letting them go to seed, but now they have fresh growth). you should see the sheer mass of seed i've collected from the kale around the corner of the house. it's probably 3 cups at this point. gonna use them for sprouts.

my last surviving tree collard is still eeking it's way on the porch. it has powdery mildew, and fungus gnats. :-( but i see some fresh growth, so maybe the centipedes are helping. maybe i should move it outside so it gets better sunlight. (but i don't want to lose it! maybe i'll put it out there after the nematodes arrive. and maybe i'll construct a cage around it so the whiteflies don't attack.) so far $45 down the tube in this endeavor. *fingers crossed*

the other plants are some sort of climbing spinach. got them in a trade.

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2015 4:42 pm 
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The climbing spinach is Malabar spinach - not really a spinach at all, and it is a tropical plant (likes heat & humidity.) It's my sister's favorite salad green, but the leaves seep a mucilaginous gunk I'm not fond of. Wikipedia has a good write-up on it.

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 Post subject: Re: DIY fruit pickers
PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2015 7:50 am 
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Seagull of the PPK
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Location: Bananaland
Jill wrote:
The climbing spinach is Malabar spinach - not really a spinach at all, and it is a tropical plant

You're kidding!! I always thought Malabar spinach was just another name for the New Zealand spinach we get here (which goes under dozens of different local names). It doesn't climb but it spreads, almost like a squash, and it has that mucilage thing going on, and can't be eaten raw (too much oxalic acid, i think).

That Wiki thing was indeed awesome and made me realize that we call it another non-spinachy name (bertalha) and it is supposed to be one of these miraculous plants. It doesn't grow here though, too cold, only up farther north.

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