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Deb Rebel

gardener
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since Dec 23, 2013
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books cat fish food preservation greening the desert solar trees urban woodworking
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Deb Rebel currently moderates these forums:
Old Geekina and all around bodger with some engineering training in there somewhere. Been gardening since 1966. Like things like growing unusual things, playing with passive solar and solar heaters/cookers etc. I also speak clutch... heh. Been playing with yarn and beads since about then too, 1966. Can make torchon lace.
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Recent posts by Deb Rebel

I have a gazillion pine cones from several happy donor trees. I use the best for crafts and the less than perfects get soaked in the fat... let to sit and drip onto old paper or cardboard, and used as firestarters. Both the cones and the soaked cardboard.
1 day ago
My bone frame is small and thus wrists and ankles are not as strong as they should be... I am literally stronger in arm and in hand grip than my wrist will take. I can handle some of the 14.4 and 18's cordless IF I put on some wrist bracers. I also like to lay out any work with such cordless tools to allow me to take frequent breaks as required.

Years back I wanted to buy a very large router, meant to be mounted in a router table and whirl panel cutting bits. I picked up a 3.3 hp one from a display in a woodworking store, rolled it over in my wrists into upside down position and both wrists did their very loud krik-cracks that that much compact weight would cause. I grew a very worried store rep just like that, whom I reassured that I intended it to be permanently mounted in a router table, but I was examining overall balance... I did end up buying it. Don't ask I haven't seen it in fifteen or so years. It is still doing duty buried in the heart of a serious router table that my hubby uses to murder innocent wood.

We have 'her tools' 'his tools' and 'our tools'. Sometimes the person uses said tool on behalf of the other one, in their presence. Or in my case, I figure out the work around so I can tackle it as is with what tools I have or can get. He buys the cheapo linesman pliers, I buy the quality pair. Similar size. Why? The quality pair is better made, better balanced and cuts much easier because it has better leverage. It's too big for my grip so having the better quality tool that does the job better means I can do with it what he does with the cheapo pair.

I would love downsized tools that are lighter and does the same but lacking that, I get to make do. The wrist bracers I have are no metal Velcro fasten that go from mid palm to somewhere down the lower arm. They restrict movement but not so much as to prevent me from working. And they allow me to pick up the bigger heavier tools to use. So. Working smarter as well by arranging the work so it's easier for me to access to do the work with whatever tool also makes a big difference.

Loving the information about the older handsaws. Thank you.
5 days ago

Rin Corbin wrote:Happy New Year!

Reporting back, yep, 2017 was just a cold year here. My lettuce never bolted, when usually it's gone by the 4th of July. So no surprise that my clemson spineless okra sulked at 6" tall and only gave me 5 pods. Next year it's going back against the cob wall.

Deb, the gutter heat tape is genius. Have you (or anyone else) had any okra luck with the wall of water contraptions they make for tomatoes?



I've never used wall-of-water for anything. Just cold frame, cloche, or hoop. I have a piece of turf that bakes mightily and I'm going to install the next attempt at Okra there. I'm also going to start them indoors with 'tender root' protocol like I do for competition pumpkins to get the plants up and raring to go first. (and some direct seed).

I learned the gutter tape bit from competition pumpkin growing. To have the fruit ready for harvest and weighoff you count backwards to when you have to start and if you have an iffy spring or cold nights, the heat tape and the hoop can give you six to eight weeks start on getting the plant going. I'd rather just use cold frames than electricity....
6 days ago
(rumors of my death have been seriously and greatly exaggerated but wholy believed by myself until a few days ago. Never get a 'double cold'... one on top of the other with different symptoms).

Silkies are about the best broody hen out there for raising chicks. If you breed them to something else (a different rooster) you will get a bigger chicken that still has that broody streak. So you breed up. Hybrid silkies are your best bet. Fugly is in the eye of the beholder but if it will sit eggs when you are working on your flock, it's the most beautiful thing you've ever seen.
3 weeks ago
I pick at ripe. I have blems. Four grades: store perfect (hahaha), a few minor bits like catfacing, a few blems and minor bugbites, and the Is It Homemade Salsa/Sauce or is it compost?

Nothing can compare with the home grown, as you can market heirlooms that are tasty but don't take to shipping... I admit the only thing I use on my tomatoes is Blossom End Rot spray as soil in this area is notorious for low calcium. I add gypsum but still can have problems. Else they eat compost and rain water and city water only if there isn't enough rain water (they basically pull out of the aquifer and occasionally give the tower a shot of chlorine)

So often market garden will also be very organic and natural. Usually too at end of day, there's "I don't want to drag it home" prices. Plus sometimes there will be sale on 'it's not perfect, it's edible today and NOT at all tomorrow' blems. Person I got a roast tomato recipe (drizzled with olive oil and herbs and slow roasted chunks) from that had a stall near her that would sell a whole brown grocery bag of blems and seconds for cheap. If she took them home and processed immediately it was great quantities cheap.
3 months ago
Tis the season to be jolly... coming up.

Time to warm up your skills and churn gifts again, as harvest is ending and we're all driven indoors in the northern climates.

I'm making grape jelly and various pepper products, tomato based salsas, and more.  My harvest can be shared....
3 months ago
This one makes me laugh. (you don't know my time spent on solder bench work....)

https://xkcd.com/730/
3 months ago
This is a lovely walk, thank you for sharing it with us.

Rather gives me a chuckle to think you need a chaperone... more I would think to defend you against single men in the woods. hehe
3 months ago
I just stuck a picture of pawpaw fruit on tree into the thread and chose that for the thumbnail. See if it got fixed?