Mark Tudor

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since Oct 04, 2012
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Recent posts by Mark Tudor

I'm not sure how any debt is left behind by changing the currency you exchange. If you have debt in US dollars or Euros today, tomorrow you still do but you also have some crypto currency and you decide to exchange that with select people. Crypto currency is handy for avoiding currency fees when needing to convert typical currencies, but it is also extremely volatile. Many people are scrambling to try and make a quick buck by "investing" in them, but that's like investing in baseball cards or beanie babies- they only have value because people think they do, with no intrinsic value beyond that desire. The prices jump up as buyers jump on the wagon, and eventually the wheels roll off and the value plummets (like it seems to do every month or two).

While I love the idea of a currency that's not tied to a particular country and its more or less volatile economy, I don't think there is any sure-fire currency in existence. Many love gold or silver, but it's not much different than beanie babies-if we don't all agree that a particular metal has value, then it doesn't beyond its industrial applications. Crypto currency is the same, but even worse in certain respects. No electricity? How do you prove you have any crypto currency? Lost the hard drive that stores your proof of ownership, or it gets corrupted without a good backup? Same issue. You have nothing tangible as proof of ownership. If your economy is web based, and with net neutrality official canned, I think some issues of content access could repeat as it did 10 years ago. Instead of banks being the bad guys, it's ISPs and content producers/distributers affecting access to data.
1 day ago
I believe EdibleAcres is a permie here too, and has a playlist on biochar:

Essentially making charcoal and inoculating it with compost tea or urine, as the charcoal will otherwise absorb nutrients already in the soil, will turn it into biochar. You can process huge amounts of brush per day this way, and you're left with a great resource that you can mix into whatever you want over time.

Trying to bury massive slash piles to make hugels seems like a lot more work, and yeah until the wood is rotting away some nitrogen is needed either from the soil or by adding manure in with the wood before you bury it.

Perhaps you can trim off the smaller bits to make into biochar, and save the largest logs to bury in hugel beds?
5 days ago
Even with a full acre, if the chickens can access all parts all the time, they will over work certain plants that they like the most, and those plants might not recover enough to survive. Instead of you took 1 acre, and divided it into 4 parts, then had their coop in the center you could give them access to a new quarter each week. Then there would be 3 weeks of recovery before the chickens came back in again.

You could stack some additional function in that area by planting a variety of fruit trees, protect them while they get established, and then let the chickens in to eat spoiled fruit and any bugs that come with it. The chickens will help fertilize for you too. You might also be able to seed a quarter after the chickens move out, and in 3 weeks the seeds sprout and can be new food for the chickens.

You can buy/make a coop that has an elevated floor rather than installing a cement slab. You can move the coop if you want, perhaps you roll it into each 1/4 acre paddock or maybe not, instead you just open a different gate and you leave the coop in a central location. I would personally go for moving the coop, have it on wheels and just pull it into the next paddock after the chickens are out.
1 week ago
I think that will be close but should work if you can form it to be 10" outer diameter for the riser. 2" thick perlite slip should be decent insulation. Once the riser dries and hardens, you can light it up and lower the bell over the riser to see how the draw behaves. Measure to leave 1.5-2" between the top of the riser and the bell. Good luck!
1 week ago
I wonder if building something like Mike Oehler's earth bermed greenhouse, and having one end sectioned off as a chicken roost, would work. There would be a little door to outside that you either manually open/close, or use some timer to automate that. Outside, you have a short covered run with a solid roof and heavy gage wire mesh to keep out predators that several paddocks run up to. However many days you move the gate to the next paddock so the chickens get access, and they roost in their end of the greenhouse at night.

When you let them out, you can clean up the litter under the roost, gather any eggs, and put in some clean wood chips. Since the plant beds and the roost area is several feet up from your walking path, it would be easy to reach everything.
2 weeks ago
The chipper rental is probably the most affordable option based on time spent, if you were hugel that much material, plus keep up with new material, you would either need a decent sized excavator to make the beds or you'll be shoveling dirt for weeks. Bundling up the small twigs and lining the creeks and canyons to reduce soil erosion, and chipping the larger pieces for the garden sounds like a good combo.
2 weeks ago
No, radon is more an issue in a basement with no air flow, where the gas can accumulate. A greenhouse will have plenty of air flow so radon would be no more an issue than if you were standing outside.
2 weeks ago

Marco Banks wrote:Not to be a contrarian, but from my experience in Kansas where Osage Orange (hedge apples) are commonly used as shelter belts, they aren't planted by birds but by the farmers to keep the fields from blowing.  WAY back in the day, they'd run a single bottom plow behind a team of horses right along their property line and turn over a single "flip" of soil.  Then they'd walk along and drop a hedge apple in every 10 steps, and kick the dirt over the top.  Two years later, they'd have an 8 foot tree and the makings of a boundary-defining shelter belt.

I remember a couple of the 80-year old farmers taking about it when I was a kid (back in the late 60's and early 70's.  Their grandfathers had busted the sod and planted the first wheat crop, only to see the dust storms blow through and blow everything away.  So the widespread use of Osage Orange as the most popular tree for Kansas shelter belts became the norm.  Thousands of miles of these were planted in the 30's and 40's. 

I ordered several thousand Osage Orange seeds that are now in my fridge, and in about 2 months I'll be planting them on my new property to make a deer-proof hedge. Following the example given in the book 'Hedges, windbreaks, shelters and live fences', written in 1900 ( ), I'll be planting the seeds every 9 inches and then each fall I'll weave the new shoots together so it grows into a living fence. Will be interesting to see how it works out! I was able to buy a pound of seeds for $20-30 which is thousands of seeds.
2 weeks ago
The cell reception at the land I just bought is pretty minimal, which is unfortunate as I was thinking cellular would be handy for cheap internet access. So I'll likely have to purchase satellite internet service, as the area is pretty low population and the lay of the land doesn't offer long site lines to towers. Maybe another network would work, we will see down the road.

Although I work in the IT realm, I'm not a big fan of new tech, especially the constant bleeding of money for the endless upgrade cycle. As long as I have enough internet access for information and a little entertainment value I'm good. Having a phone on me but turned off which has a signal would be handy if I hurt myself while felling a tree or a mountain lion or bear decided to take exception to my presence.
2 weeks ago
I've also seen the argument that crypto currencies have no inherent value beyond what people believe it is worth. So it's really no better than paper money or say comic books/baseball cards from 50 years ago. There's a limited number of cards/comics from way back too, but if nobody cares they are worthless, just like crypto currency. The currencies have a small edge in that they can be used in trading, but really it's only useful in bypassing government control, which for some is all that matters. So I personally think crypto currency will continue to have a value based on that, until tech catches up enough to fake or hack it.
2 weeks ago