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evan's ant village log  RSS feed

 
Lab Ant
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greening the desert
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Y2, Summer (13)

I missed most of the AT course, but I did get to interact with some of the participants. Good folks! And I got to observe some of their handiwork, the artifacts they left behind. Seems like Tim really inspired this crew to crank out cool constructions!

Solar ovens that boil water quick! I think Rob's was the quickest.

All kinds of rocket stoves! I really like this little cook stove that Mike built up by his campsite.
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party near the well
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solar cooker competition
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Mike's rocket campstove
 
evan l pierce
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Y2, Summer (14)

My dad and fellow ant Steve is here! Steve and Chris worked out a deal to trade ant plots, and now Stevantium is the neighboring plot to the south!

My brother Gabe is here too, helping Steve get his house built before he heads out to Australia!

Steve and Gabe have set up camp, peeled a few logs, and even done a bit of micro-terracing and gardening on the south side of our shared hugel border berm!

Steve offered a $50 bounty for peeled logs, and lots of folks around here took him up on it!
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Chrisantinople
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Wildwood, Stevantium
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pile of peeled logs, Stevantium
 
evan l pierce
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Y2, Summer (15)

Got a toilet system started. Basically a wheelie bin humanure toilet with a few adaptations.

First, the bin lid is fully sealed between uses. Takes a bit more time to open and close the bin lid than just lifting the toilet lid, but I think the opportunity for unwanted odors and vermin is much smaller. Maybe I'll rig up an easier way in the future but for now it works.

Second, worms and soil microorganisms will be added to speed up the decomposition process, reduce the mass, and hopefully minimize storage.

Third, the wheelie bin docking station is partially earth-sheltered, which should keep it slightly warmer going into the fall and winter to help extend the decomposition season.

Still needs some privacy walls and a roof, but it's nice to have a closer place to go when nature calls.
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earth-sheltered wheelie bin toilet
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easy access for rolling wheelie bin in and out
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seat with a view
 
evan l pierce
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Y2, Summer (16)

It's cherry season! Fred, Kai, Ben, and I went on a little trip out to where there are cherry trees from which no one harvests!

We picked and ate our fill, and picked gallons more to bring back and preserve. I heard talk of folks making jam and wine, but I mostly just pitted and dehydrated mine.

Still waiting on some materials I ordered for the solar dehydrator, but vehicle dashboards work in a pinch.

I think what I'm most excited about are the thousands of cherry pits we'll be able to plant this fall!
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cherry heaven
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pitting cherries
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dashboard dehydration
 
evan l pierce
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Y2, Summer (17)

Some of the cherries had some little maggots living in them. I picked them out  while pitting and rolled them into a little sushi roll for the ducks.

Speaking of ducks, Glorfindel and Varda are sitting on eggs! We might have some ducklings waddling around here soon!
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cherry maggot sushi
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Glorfindel and Varda brooding
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feather and straw lined nest
 
Posts: 82
Location: Melbourne Australia
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Speaking of wheelie bin loos, I don't know if you have seen this blog https://www.milkwood.net/2010/11/23/the-most-lovable-loo-in-the-west/

a relevant quote "This wheelie bin system has one big difference to most wheelie bin systems: no chute between the seat and the bin. That means the lip of the bin is hard up under the seat. And this, in turn, means no cleaning a splattered toilet chute for us!"

Hope this helps
 
pollinator
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DUde those fences are sweet gates are amazing you guys are always up too some cool stuff. I can wait to afford to visit again.
 
pollinator
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Hey Evan, I made a cherry pitter like this one and it works so much quicker and tidier than a knife (which I have also used).  
Source: http://www.barefeetinthekitchen.com/2012/06/homemade-cherry-pitter.html
 
pollinator
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Location: Longbranch, WA
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Then there is the two free hand version:
Drive a large spike through a scrap piece of board to serve as a stand.
Cut the sharp point off.
Use a file or hack saw to cut an X in the end of the nail. this will make 4 sharp corners that will cut into the bottom of the cherry and then hold the seed as it pushes through
Hold the stem of the cherry if it has one with one hand and the sides of the cherry with the other.
push the bottom of the cherry down on the nail while pulling up gently on the stem.
Pie cherries slip the pit easily but sweet cherries are sometimes more resistant.
For rapid production put the pitter on a plate, a bowl for the pits on the left, the unpitted cherries behind the plate and the bowel for the pitted cherries on the right.

I remember the nail we used formed a black oxide from the juice so that it did not rust.
 
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I use a free cherry pitter and it works great!  I have no teeth so I just pop the cherries in my mouth, gum crush the cherry and suck the fruit off the pit then spit the seed out!  

I love that wheelie bin toilet!
 
She still doesn't approve of my superhero lifestyle. Or this shameless plug:
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