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Blayne Prowse

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since Feb 03, 2014
Cumberland BC
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Recent posts by Blayne Prowse

Hi Permies. Here are the details:

We are planning on using wood dowel plugs to innoculate some alder logs. We have shitake and oyster plugs coming. 300 of each. We live on central Vancouver Island. Zone 7-b. Pretty heavy rainfall in the winter, and dry summer. Little snow, we get light frost, but few days of heavy freezing.

So my qustions:

1. When would be the best time of year to innoculate the logs?
2. When would be the best time to cut the logs(we have an acre of live alder so finding wood isn't a problem)?


Anything else you can think of to give us a starting point. Thanks for any advice:) Blayne.
3 years ago
I am leary of putting the work into swales in our climate these days, since the energy it takes vs the amount of good they do might not be worth it. If we had summer rain, absolutely! I think planting on contour and keyline maybe a better use of energy, as are dams. Storing water in the soil is key, with piles of bio-mass under your trees being number 1. Huglekulture, especially wood buried under grade and on contour, for perenial crops is a wise move. If you have materials available of course.

Mimicking what already exists in this climate for food crops is obviously the way to go. Apples, berries of all varieties, nut trees. We really have massive diversity in the PNW. I love the idea of restoring the natural cycles and living from the land. Salmon, deer, bottom fish, elk, shellfish, bear, berries, nuts.... Oh man how well we could eat!
3 years ago
At work we use a 5 gallon bucket in our cube van when there are no other facilities. Just pick it up with one hand, control yourself with the other and go. I just thought of doing this at home with a bucket and sawdust, then I will toss it in my compost or under my trees. Nice transition until I get my toilet built and set-up. I will probably have a pee bucket and a poo bucket instead of a urine diverter. I believe you can even buy toilet seats that fit on a 5 gallon bucket for the ladies. I feel like peeing in sawdust would be less smelly than straight urine in a container.
3 years ago
Thanks for your feedback Jay. I agree that decks are a fragile part of a house that fall apart faster than most anything on a home, aside from maybe asphalt roofing(grrrrr that stuff makes me angry) Weighing your thoughts, and my visualizations of the build and my wishes for the space, I will construct this like a shed add on to the house. A shed style roof built up to the posts, but not including them into the build. I really want a concrete floor so I can play with a RMH in there, and to leave the most amount of usable space for my woodworking hobbies(bowyering). As I progress I am sure there will be more questions I will pose to you:)
4 years ago
I own the home and we intend on staying for quite sometime. Even if we move we intend on keeping it as a rental property. More usable space is always good.
4 years ago
Thanks Jay. I certainly did not have my heart set on any one way, and just thought I would investigate the possibility of the floor idea. I will now pursue building a metal roof under the deck and framing in my walls. The space is only 150 sq feet, so I would prefer to infill rather than build a free standing structure. My main concern for using a conventional roof was how to connect it to the house and how to fasten the roof to the house. Now I will remove the siding so I can fasten a header to the house, and lift deck boards to access fastening points for the roofing. I am a handy guy having worked in trades for most of my working life, but all of it is in sheetmetal and heating, not framing. Any tips or suggestions, reading material would be appreciated:)
4 years ago
Here are some pictures to hopefully clear up my idea for you all. The deck is now open and I hope to close it in to act as a roof over the slab underneath, which will become my workspace. I am going to add a roof over the existing deck to help shed water and protect whatever material works best. I am open to suggestions.







I will be stick framing in the workspace and finishing the walls with cedar most likely. I hope to have the deck 100% waterproof. I don't mind doing a yearly maintenance on it(re-sealing with oil etc).
4 years ago
Sure I realized that I wasn't being very clear. I will try to post some pictures by the weekend:)
4 years ago
Thanks Bill.

I was chatting with another fellow and the topic of light weight concrete came up. This could be another option. I am leaning towards tiling the space(10x15), but the light weight concrete has some appeal. It is tough to find information about waterproofing a deck with out using fiberglass or vinyl:(
4 years ago
I am in the planning stages of creating a studio under my deck. Currently the deck is treated 5/4 lumber decking, 2x8 treated joists on 16",and no roof. My idea is to cover the deck with clear panels, build up solid half walls, and then use a natural material sealed with linseed oil, on top of a membrane of some kind. The 5/4 will be removed and repurposed, and plywood will be layed down. I have never worked with a natural floor before, but I love the idea. Concrete came to mind first, but if I can do it with something better I will. Any feed back would be appreciated:)
4 years ago