• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies living kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • raven ranson
  • Jocelyn Campbell
  • paul wheaton
  • Devaka Cooray
stewards:
  • Burra Maluca
  • Miles Flansburg
  • Julia Winter
garden masters:
  • Dave Burton
  • Anne Miller
  • Greg Martin
gardeners:
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Mark Tudor
  • Pearl Sutton

Permaculture hacks that work  RSS feed

 
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Anyone have any methods that were spun off from "traditional" permie practices?

Maybe you found a time savings. Maybe you changed it to use what you have available. Maybe your local climate effects the method. Maybe you do nothing, understanding that the grand scheme will come about more slowly than with intervention.

 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 9
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My first is an adaption of fukuoka seed balls. I cannot attest that it works yet, but it makes sense in my mind. I will know this fall.

Horse manure is scooped, added to a manure spreader, and spread on my pastures. A lightbulb lit. Why not add seed into it and get a 2 for 1.

So now i pile my horse manure. By fall I'll have a large pile that is well aged. I'll mix my fall seeds into it and spread it. It should work for pasture or deer feed plots. Since spreading manure is something i already do, I created a seed ball effect with no additional time spent.
 
pollinator
Posts: 2055
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
79
forest garden trees urban
  • Likes 7
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I build raised beds, fill them with compostibles, and plant them with jerursalm artichokes.
After a few years, I knock it over, rake up the unfinished compost and build a new bed.
The soil on my rocky plot grows with each new year, and I can compost off site materials by declaring them to be "soil amendments".

 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
.
William, thats similar to my lasagna bed hack.

First year on a new bed is potatos.  I make a box from 2x6s and plant the seed potatos in it. This gives me several weeks to fill the box, adding whatever is available as the plants grow.  Hay, bedding,  manure, soil. Its similar to a lasagna bed, just spaced out over time to give extra space for potatos. Next year i may plant squash or cucumbers in that area, assuming i have space for a new potato bed.

I do the same with asparagus. Directions generally say to dig an 8" trench, barely cover the crowns, then rain or humans can gradually fill the trenches as they grow. I skip the trench,  just add a box and start filling like i do with potatos. Keeping in mind the patch may last 50 years, i want good stuff up top.

 
gardener
Posts: 422
Location: Sierra Nevadas, CA 6400'
120
dog hugelkultur trees woodworking
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I am still experimenting with full-on hugelkultur beds on my piece of land, but in the mean time I have raised beds at other houses. When I moved these beds a few years ago, I dug down beneath them about a foot and piled up a bunch of wet/rotting wood. Then I covered it with the soil from the beds, and it has worked phenomenally in terms of water retention. I was able to grow tomatoes, squash, and peppers in a dry California summer only irrigating about five times during the summer (in comparison, previous years they needed irrigation about every other day). I can't speak to fertility as these beds already had good soil in them.

Similarly, no-till and deep mulching has worked incredibly well for these beds. I really don't do much for them. When I mow the lawn (grass or leaves) I pile it up in a circular cage made up of metal wire. After my last harvest in the fall, I cut down the plants and pile on anything in the cage. My garlic beds that I mulched with about 10" of material in the fall are now broken down to about 1/2" of mulch. Granted, we had a very warm winter, but the pace at which soil life breaks down mulch if left to do it's thing is really astonishing.
 
garden master
Posts: 2069
Location: USDA Zone 8a
406
bee dog food preservation greening the desert hunting cooking purity trees
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I have been adding coffee grounds to my caliche dirt. Within a short period of time the grey dirt is turning brown and I don't see any grounds.
 
Posts: 31
Location: outside Brisbane, Australia
2
chicken greening the desert cooking
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I work in the IT department at a school. I am bringing home cardboard packaging from new computers to lay over my veggie beds and under my fruit trees, to smother grass. In my hot and dry subtropical climate, the cardboard covers the ground and stops the soil biota from being fried into oblivion. I've also gotten my husband to drill holes with his post-holer, and I chuck in old paper, weeds, kitchen scraps, used tissues and kitchen paper towel, and fill it in, to make an underground sponge for planting above.  

I have 3 dogs, one of them poops on his bedding now and then. The 3 went crazy chasing toads and dug up my mango tree (only 2 years old). I was furious. It was in a small mound that I had created to give the young plant drainage with our hard clay soil. So I replanted it, and spread the latest poopy old cotton towel around the base. It's protecting the tree roots from drying out, and hopefully keeping the dogs away. He pooped on another old towel since, and it has been added to my "dog deterrent" cover.

I have placed some pruned bougainvillea branches over a seedling to stop the horse eating it. It's thorns haven't stopped her, but I will add more and then hopefully it will be prickly enough,  I will be turning a waste product into a resource.
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here is my pasture mulching hack.

Winter hay feeding for cows used to be done by placing the round bale with a hay ring. I always place the hay strategically,  in areas i want to add organic matter. The problem has been the amount they don't eat. I end up with a 12" deep layer about 20ft diameter. This chokes it so bad that there is little grass growing the second year.

So i now roll out the hay. This covers a bigger area and its left so shallow there shouldnt be a dead zone.  It should not only recover quicker, it should thrive.

First pic is a rolled out bale. Second pic is the unrolled dead zone after 1 year.
20180319_161317-480x640.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180319_161317-480x640.jpg]
20180321_110344-480x640.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180321_110344-480x640.jpg]
 
Posts: 461
Location: Northern Maine, USA (zone 3b-4a)
17
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've made 5 large raised beds with the first 12in was large branches w/ small branches in between then a 3in layer of manure topped with good amended top soil. they grew berry bushes for 6 yrs. w/ no fertilization. only had to add about 2in of soil  for settling, over that time and rarely had to water. basically a hugelkulter raised bed.
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I saw a hugel hack on "deep south homestead" youtube channel.

When planting tomato transplants,  he digs a 16" hole and places 4 or 5 corn cobs(from last season) in the hole. He adds a little dirt and plants tomatos above that. The benefit he touted was its ability to hold water.

 
pollinator
Posts: 1029
Location: Los Angeles, CA
165
books chicken food preservation forest garden hugelkultur urban
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Brush pile/mulch hack:

For larger woody tree trimmings and vining veggies like tomatoes, cucumbers, watermelon, pumpkins . . .  I don't bother chopping that stuff up and trying to compost it.  It's just too much work.  Have you ever tried to turn a compost pile that has a tomato vine mixed into it?  Frustrating.

I create brush piles on the south side of my trees, particularly on a south-facing hillside where I have about 20 fruit trees planted.  The woody/vine-y stuff just gets piled up and left to rot over the next couple of years.  Every year I'll add to these piles, even as the stuff on the bottom is rotting and turning into rich black soil.

1.  Much much less work than trying to chop that stuff up or run it through a chipper.

2.  It keeps the soil beneath cool and moist, particularly when that hot summer sun beats on the south side of the treeIt s.

3.  It feeds the soil fungal network, again, which tends to get irradiated in the hot summer sun.  When you pull back an old mulch pile like that, you can see tremendous amounts of fungi breaking down the wood and feeding it directly into the root zone of the tree.

4.  It's a great lizard habitat.  They over-winter in those piles, lay their eggs beneath them, etc.  All those lizards keep the snails and slugs in check.

5.  It sequesters a lot of carbon and slowly returns much of it to the soil where it belongs.

6.  Because the piles are on the south (downhill) side of my trees, it's nice to be able to stand on them and get a little bit more reach up into the trees when pruning, thinning fruit, or picking.  They serve as a kind of terrace on our steep hillside.
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Fence post hack. Use the trees the birds planted as posts.

The old fence i have is almost a solid row of cedars. The cows have found weak spots i had to address. As i was trimming cedars to get to the weakpoint, i noticed the cedars were brand new fence posts already set in the ground.  What a big labor saver! I would guess that the biggest void between useable cedar trees is 20ft.
20180408_122731-480x640.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180408_122731-480x640.jpg]
 
pollinator
Posts: 1110
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
55
kids trees urban
  • Likes 6
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
urban hack--in the city we do stupid stuff like run a dehumidifier all day in the basement.  I'm sure country folks had better solutions that didn't lead to vast mold for centuries and we've forgotten them, right?

And then it's someone's chore to empty the water every night.  

But, that water has some other advantages over other urban ways of making you sad:
--no fluoride
--no chlorine
--it's there, in water form, unlike the humidity, which you could maybe capture tiny amounts of with rocks.  if you had rocks.  and you don't.


BUT!!!--it's also devoid of any oxygen whatsoever.  So don't even think of putting it on your growies, not till you've added one half capful of hydrogen peroxide (which is cheaply available and grows in your local urban pharmacy or convenience store habitat) to each 3-gallon bucket.  (I think those are 3 gallons, the mop bucket ones).  If you search through permies you should be able to find my thread about this, I did actually do the math and figure out the approximate amount of dissolved oxygen needed and the ratio of peroxide.  This is the standard 3 (three) per cent peroxide we're talking about here--some comes in other percentages, don't use those without doing the math first.  

This hydrogen peroxide is because the oxygen is necessary for the microbes in the soil, and without it they will die, your soil will die, your plants will die, eventually you will die, the house is haunted, get out!! aaaaaaaaaaaaah!

THEN--after you've added the magic hydrogen peroxide, OR maybe shaken it, not stirred, for like a long enough period of time that it gets some good suds going, and I don't know how to do that without spilling it all out of the bucket and those kind of buckets don't have a lid--the water is ready to give to your garden.

benefits:
-- a toxin-free water
-- steady regularity of availability, even during the #%@$#%@#% drought that has happened each Julaugust the last few summers
-- feel like a responsible permie,putting a problem to work as a solution
-- capture and infiltrate water in your soil
-- soil is now healthier, spongier, and more absorbent than the leading brand, for flash floods that come at the end of Julaugust after the long drought
-- a little exercise
-- you get to sound like a sophisticated genius to all of your non-permie-minded urban cohorts--or maybe a crazy nutball, but some people seem to enjoy that


cautions:
-- make sure bucket is clean of cleaning detergents before using
-- don't forget the magic H2O2!! or shaking vigorously
-- yes it would be simpler just to move the country, it's ridiculous what we have to go through to get back to the way nature does things IN THE FIRST PLACE
-- don't overwater your herbs, your tomatoes (I now learn they are desert plants), or your soil (to the point of erosion)--just spread it around to keep your soil moist and healthy and absorbent
--lift with your legs, not your back
--a bucket in each hand is more balanced
--careful you don't crash into someone or you will probably get wet
--I can't think of anything else that can possibly go wrong, but someone'll come up with somethign, y'all are creative

Rationalizations/motivations--since this is a really artificial thing you have to go through, I want to point out a few things:
--you're using what otherwise would become a waste product
--you could wash your clothes with it before you watered with it, if you had a greywater system unlike our house
--you can feel better about "irrigating" because "you didn't start the drought" and you're in the city, also not your fault, and, again, that water was just going to the storm-water-sewer system to do absolutely nothing, it's like you're just keeping the water on your land longer, not irrigating
--you get a little mini workout
--it's free of the fluoride and persistent chlorine (chloramines) that your tap water would have, so if you had to irrigate in some of hte droughty days with that stuff, it would be much much worse longterm
--now you can look forward to the emptying the dehumidifier chore instead of feeling sad
--putting the H2O2 back in the water is basically mimicing what was supposed to happen when the water fell in the form of rain or accumulated drop by drop in the form of dew, but didn't happen because instead you had a dehumdifier
--you didn't turn on the dehumdifier. not your fault.  you are just doing this transitionally until you can persuade the dehumidifier to make way for an air well or something
--and you don't have rocks to make an air well because someone exiled all the rocks from New England cities and built stone walls out of them somewhere
--this is actually something you CAN do in the city, vs. the gazillion awesome things you maybe can't
--I think there's another one I'm forgetting here
 
master steward
Posts: 6323
Location: Pacific Northwest
1905
cat duck fiber arts forest garden homestead hugelkultur kids cooking wood heat
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Fence post hack. Use the trees the birds planted as posts.

The old fence i have is almost a solid row of cedars. The cows have found weak spots i had to address. As i was trimming cedars to get to the weakpoint, i noticed the cedars were brand new fence posts already set in the ground.  What a big labor saver! I would guess that the biggest void between useable cedar trees is 20ft.



I did this, too, except I use mine as posts for my laundry line!



Another hack I use is to put a pile of leaves next to my compost bin. When I carry my in-house compost bucket to the bin, I use a leaf or three to wipe out the food that's stuck to the bucket. This makes less cleaning for me, and adds leaves to the compost at the same time!
 
Nicola Stachurski
Posts: 31
Location: outside Brisbane, Australia
2
chicken greening the desert cooking
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My partner has started feeding the chickens by pouring their grain onto prickles. We have some lawn prickles, and the chickens scratch where the grains are. We hope they will uproot the prickles.
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Joshua, thats interesting about aerated water. I didnt know that. I heard well water is devoid of oxygen. That kind of makes it lousy for irrigation.  

One small water reuse is salad spinner water. I pick lettuce every 2 days for salads. I put it in a spinner to drain it, then place in fridge.

That green tinted water from the spinner goes on houseplants.

Another is pouring noodle water (or any boiled water like potatos) straight onto fire ant mounds while its still hot. Over time it really takes a toll on them. It costs nothing in $$ or time.
 
Posts: 61
Location: zone 6a, ish
18
food preservation forest garden fungi homestead cooking trees
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I can't speak to anyone else's experience, but we (my mom and I) have been using non-aerated dehumidifier water on flower beds for 30 years and haven't had a problem and, as far as I can tell, there's no appreciable difference in the vegetation between the beds we use it on (closest to the cellar door) and the ones we don't.  Most of the time we don't bother putting it in a watering can or anything, just get it close to the ground and tip it out to gently flood the area.  We also use well water on houseplants with no problems.  For me, adding peroxide to the water would just be contributing to the waste stream and making a bigger ecological footprint than necessary.
 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
pollinator
Posts: 1110
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
55
kids trees urban
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
That's awesome!  I use water from the "rain barrel" (aka the trash barrel) but the leaves are right there by the bin...more convenience!  and if I planned ahead and put some water in a container there too I could do both.  Fascinating concept, this planning ahead business.

Nicole Alderman wrote:

Fence post hack. Use the trees the birds planted as posts.

The old fence i have is almost a solid row of cedars. The cows have found weak spots i had to address. As i was trimming cedars to get to the weakpoint, i noticed the cedars were brand new fence posts already set in the ground.  What a big labor saver! I would guess that the biggest void between useable cedar trees is 20ft.



I did this, too, except I use mine as posts for my laundry line!



Another hack I use is to put a pile of leaves next to my compost bin. When I carry my in-house compost bucket to the bin, I use a leaf or three to wipe out the food that's stuck to the bucket. This makes less cleaning for me, and adds leaves to the compost at the same time!

 
Marco Banks
pollinator
Posts: 1029
Location: Los Angeles, CA
165
books chicken food preservation forest garden hugelkultur urban
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
To aerate deoxygenated water, you just need to give it a shake in a jar that has a little bit of air in the headspace for 10 seconds, or blow bubbles into it with a straw.  Its unlikely that there is zero O2 in it, but even if so, it will not kill a plant, as there is plenty of air in the soil profile, and as the water percolates through, it will be oxygenated.

Nature oxygenates water on a lake simply by blowing over the surface of it.  You don't need whitecaps, although that is a way to get a lot of oxygen into the water in a short time.  Rivers are oxygenated by simply tricking over rocks or the wind blowing over the surface, even if there are not any big waves.
 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
pollinator
Posts: 1110
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
55
kids trees urban
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I don't know, I'd say then shake or stir the water a bit to be on the safe side.  The thing is, someone on permies had had many trees die from humidifier water or something.  I didn't want to risk it.  The production of the h2O2 is rather energy intensive (it's not an organically occurring substance so far as I know, not in any quantities) and there's the bottle...maybe a watering can would be fine but ours disappeared.  

S Tonin wrote:I can't speak to anyone else's experience, but we (my mom and I) have been using non-aerated dehumidifier water on flower beds for 30 years and haven't had a problem and, as far as I can tell, there's no appreciable difference in the vegetation between the beds we use it on (closest to the cellar door) and the ones we don't.  Most of the time we don't bother putting it in a watering can or anything, just get it close to the ground and tip it out to gently flood the area.  We also use well water on houseplants with no problems.  For me, adding peroxide to the water would just be contributing to the waste stream and making a bigger ecological footprint than necessary.

 
Anne Miller
garden master
Posts: 2069
Location: USDA Zone 8a
406
bee dog food preservation greening the desert hunting cooking purity trees
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here is a thread about gardening with hydrogen peroxide:

https://permies.com/t/5414/Gardening-Hydrogen-Peroxide

If you have a small garden you will need a hand squeeze sprayer. A little peroxide goes a long way. My lot is about 100 X 85 and I use a six-gallon sprayer. I have it mounted on a 2-wheel handcart.  The peroxide comes in several strengths, so the strength you start out with is not that important as long as the final strength is 8%. Peroxide should be kept out of the sun.

When you plant the seedlings dig the hole and spray it with peroxide using your hand sprayer.  Wet it good and then wet the roots of the seedlings or small plant.  



Read the article to find about the results.  
 
pollinator
Posts: 320
45
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
William Bronson wrote

I build raised beds, fill them with compostibles, and plant them with jerursalm artichokes.



William, do you chop and drop the Jerusalum Artichoke tops, or are you using them as a first crop in your new beds? In my climate, JA's tend to be very persistent in the soil, but that suggests to me that they might also be nice biomass for mulch.
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here is a swale hack.

I was trying to figure out where to take soil on my property for another project. This culvert seemed like a good spot because i got another benefit. The soil taken out is lower than the bottom of the culvert, so it will pond up and infiltrate into the ground. Its nice because that water flow exits the low side of my property. This allows me to keep some of it.
20180416_162218-480x640.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180416_162218-480x640.jpg]
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Heres an update on my mulch- rolling round bale vs dropping whole. You can compare these pics to the previous post i made.

The rolled bale is virtually invisible a month later. The year old unrolled is starting to show signs of growth.
20180416_181836-640x480.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180416_181836-640x480.jpg]
20180416_181710-640x480.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180416_181710-640x480.jpg]
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My swale hack while raining
20180504_113432-480x640.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180504_113432-480x640.jpg]
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Sediment collection hack. This was not planned, but a good byproduct. I have a road that i dont want/need. I rolled the cows hay down this road so the residual would mulch it. The beggining of the hay acted as a sediment trap. Thought this was pretty cool. The hay is actually corn stalks.
20180505_195534-480x640.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180505_195534-480x640.jpg]
20180505_195539-480x640.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180505_195539-480x640.jpg]
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Planting at the correct time can help a lot. I learned this over the last couple years with what i call cabbage beatles. Please correct me if i named this critter wrong.

Planting cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower early enough to harvest before these critters show up is critical. I harvested my cabbage and brocolli 2 to 3 weeks ago. Cauliflower was planted a couple of weeks after the other 2 were planted. This is the end result of waiting too long. Best remedy at this point is to vacuum them off. I dont use chemicals, pesticides, fertilizers, herbicides. I think the term is "beyond organic".
20180507_094213-480x640.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180507_094213-480x640.jpg]
 
Posts: 148
Location: Boudamasa, Chad
13
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I live in an arid climate,  so we try to double use all our water. Watering a food forest would be a collossal task, but it's worth our while to water the vegetables. So this year when I planted a perennial garden I put food tree seeds or cuttings down the center of the beds. Only drought tolerant stuff: moringa, chaya, cassava, pigeon pea. When the garden is done,  presto! Food forest. Worked great.
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here's another observation. A pill bug(rollie pollie) trap by accident.

After dumping my bees out of their shipping box. I set the box down so the rest of the bees can get to the hive.

2 days later i went to collect the box. I counted 47 rollie pollies inside. Thats a decent qty for not trying.
20180514_182216-640x480.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180514_182216-640x480.jpg]
 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
pollinator
Posts: 1110
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
55
kids trees urban
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

wayne fajkus wrote:Here's another observation. A pill bug(rollie pollie) trap by accident.

After dumping my bees out of their shipping box. I set the box down so the rest of the bees can get to the hive.

2 days later i went to collect the box. I counted 47 rollie pollies inside. Thats a decent qty for not trying.



Winter chicken feed!  (a little bit...maybe you just need to sweeten the deal, offer them some kickstarter rewards)
 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
pollinator
Posts: 1110
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
55
kids trees urban
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I just came up with a hack for transferring bulk olive oil (in a metal tin) to the glass bottle for everyday use.  I'm gonna say it's permaculture because bulk buying is more ecological than buying the glass bottles over and over again...but also it may be applicable for other situations.

I stuck a pushpin into the tin to make an air hole, and then (here's the hack) left it in there afterward to plug the hole so the oil is sealed in for freshness.  More secure than tape, no need to use another thing, easy to remove, reusable.

It's a very minor improvement, but it was satisfying anyway and I felt like sharing it.

(By the way, if you're confused about the air hole: if you've never tried pouring a liquid out of a container with no air hole up above, it's a pain in the butt, because the liquid sloshes back and forth instead of coming out in a smooth path.  Putting a hole, even a tiny one, higher up in the container lets air flow in and removes this effect, reducing the time and effort needed for transferring liquids substantially).  

[This also got me thinking there may be other possibilities here.

I've been so enamored of siphoning, and I wonder if there's a way to siphon that doesn't require geting your hands into the liquid or using your mouth or a pump...how about back-siphoning, where you pour some of the liquid backwards through your tube first to get the inside-the-tube siphon-seal, then lower the receiving container to start pulling the liquid?]
 
Posts: 9
Location: Banana belt of Canada, zone 9.
1
books cat homestead
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hugelkultur works. I don't have any directly-useful-to-humans plants in mine because we made it with some pretty nasty compost but the flowers I planted in there are still going like gangbusters and retaining water, even though it's getting into drought season and everything else needs to be watered.

Planting at the correct time is really important too. I planted my beans, corn, and some other hot-weather crops too early last year and they didn't really come up. I waited for the right time this year and they're thriving.
 
William Bronson
pollinator
Posts: 2055
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
79
forest garden trees urban
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Jay Angler wrote:William Bronson wrote

I build raised beds, fill them with compostibles, and plant them with jerursalm artichokes.



William, do you chop and drop the Jerusalum Artichoke tops, or are you using them as a first crop in your new beds? In my climate, JA's tend to be very persistent in the soil, but that suggests to me that they might also be nice biomass for mulch.



They do persist.
I treat them as a renewable resource.
They cover bare soil, alive or chopped and dropped.
When they grownup in a veg bed, I will yank them, break the roots off and feed them to rabbits.
The roots go to a vegless bed,in case they grow back.

If they grow in a compost pile, I break them off rather than pull them. I want them to grow back.I  then cycle them back into the pile.

In areas where the compost bed has matured enough, I dump it out onto the surrounding  soil.
They spread everywhere and I will usually just stomp them down.

Dried stalks are great kindling and bunny hay.

Compared to say,mint they are easy to control in a bed.
 
wayne fajkus
pollinator
Posts: 1732
152
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
For those using tractors to drill holes. Here is the solution for not getting them stuck. Place jackstands to stop the downward motion. Once it bottoms out on the jackstand, the spinning auger pushes the dirt up, freeing it. Don't try to lift up with your hydraulics,  just let it go down till it bottoms out.
20180706_123946-640x480.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20180706_123946-640x480.jpg]
 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
pollinator
Posts: 1110
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
55
kids trees urban
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
for yogurt-making(not raw--i'm not in charge)--you take the water from the two big mason jars that are for the thermal battery* and use those to cool the milk (put them in a large pot, put the heated milk  pot into the larger pot and wait).  Then take that same water, now hot, from the larger pot, put it back in the big mason jars, and voila, you have hot water to be the thermal battery for the yogurting process.

---
* The milk with culture in it, and two big mason jars of hot water, sit in a cooler with towels for about 4 hours and the yogurt culture turns the milk into yogurt.  my housemate's method is to pour out ALL hte old water  from the big mason jars down the drain, then refills them with hot water from the tap, then uses new cold water plus ice cubes in the larger pot to cool down the milk in the milk pot, and pours that down the drain.  My method was an improvement on that IMO.  And I will concede you could probably do better still by just not heating the milk and making raw yogurt, though I don't know how you'd do that and we don't have access to raw milk because we live in a food desert aka an American city in Massachusetts.
 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
pollinator
Posts: 1110
Location: Massachusetts, 6b, urban, nearish coast, 39'x60' minus the house, mostly shady north side, + lead.
55
kids trees urban
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Update--I have quit using the peroxide.  I just pour the water back and forth into an empty bucket a few times and wait for it to fizz.  To be clear, it wouldn't kill plants, it's the microbes that might get killed in the soil before the water has become really oxygenated perhaps.  That's what I recall happening in that other poster's situation, where they dehumidifier water seemed to kill their fruit trees.  

Of course, without an autopsy, we'll never know who the real perp was.

Joshua Myrvaagnes wrote:I don't know, I'd say then shake or stir the water a bit to be on the safe side.  The thing is, someone on permies had had many trees die from humidifier water or something.  I didn't want to risk it.  The production of the h2O2 is rather energy intensive (it's not an organically occurring substance so far as I know, not in any quantities) and there's the bottle...maybe a watering can would be fine but ours disappeared.  

S Tonin wrote:I can't speak to anyone else's experience, but we (my mom and I) have been using non-aerated dehumidifier water on flower beds for 30 years and haven't had a problem and, as far as I can tell, there's no appreciable difference in the vegetation between the beds we use it on (closest to the cellar door) and the ones we don't.  Most of the time we don't bother putting it in a watering can or anything, just get it close to the ground and tip it out to gently flood the area.  We also use well water on houseplants with no problems.  For me, adding peroxide to the water would just be contributing to the waste stream and making a bigger ecological footprint than necessary.

 
The world's cheapest jedi mind trick: "Aw c'mon, why not read this tiny ad?"
Intrinsic: An Agriculture of Altered Chaos
https://permies.com/t/95922/Intrinsic-Agriculture-Altered-Chaos
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!