Jamie Wallace

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since Mar 22, 2014
Lantzville, Vancouver Island,BC Cool temperate, Lat. 49.245 Zone 8a
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Recent posts by Jamie Wallace

Haven't received the second part yet...
The bed is still in the 100-110 F range. The squash love it, the potatoes at the base hate it. I lost most of the first row, these were close enough to gain some activity/heat off the hugelkulture bed. Never seen anything like it, the stems were completely cooked and very small potatoes were trying to form. If I planted 100 lbs I'll get maybe 25 lbs back. Live and learn.
4 years ago
Great job Dave....nice stonework.
4 years ago
Excellent charts Cj...thank you for posting.
Here's my first hugel bed in it first year...Potatoes and squash are happy and it should be pretty full by late summer.
I've had some challenges with this mound heating up as I've shown in other threads.
http://www.permies.com/t/35789/hugelkultur/Hugelkultur-bed-twist
4 years ago
art
Bill Ramsey

I'd probably leave the sawdust in, not put any scraps in


I agree with you Bill on the scraps, no more of those, but I'm not sure of the sawdust.
Amanda Wheaton

by the way, i think you could add some more materials to your bin for them to eat.. like shredded paper or leaves.



Thanks Amanda that is good advice. I guess worms have some specific requirements that take a bit to get used to.
4 years ago
Okay
Here is one to make you all laugh.
Last week-end I finally got around to starting my very first worm farm. Having researched this a bit I did the following:
-Took and old tub and elevated it with a slight slope to the drain. Placed a small bucket beneath the drain.
-Filled the bottom 2-4" with drain rock
-Placed a geotextile fabric over the drain rock and added good quality horse manure that had a good number of red wigglers ontop.

I was so proud and pleased..."Look.." I said to my family, "this will be wonderful, the worms will consume our kitchen scraps and provide wonderful worm juice and compost for our compost tea making."

I went searching for our kitchen scraps which has been sitting in a container for a few weeks. It was a bit anaerobic but I thought that would be no big deal. Added that to the surface of the manure and almost instantly every fly within 3 km found this smelly mess. Okay I can cure this, I added about 3-4" of sawdust to smoother the kitchen scraps and soak up any extra liquid.

Well I thought I had addressed the problem quite well. A few days later I went out and scrapped around....
OMG instead of teeming with red wigglers (which I know takes a few months) the pile was full of maggots.
Not only that, the sawdust plus nitrogen from the food scraps has started to heat up the material.
I scrapped the whole sawdust layer out and thought , fixed. This morning I stuck a fork in and OMG maggots deep in the compost eating whatever they can find....
So my wife said, "Take it apart and start over..."
That sounds reasonable. If I start over how can I keep the flies out?
A lid is the obvious answer but I'm sure I saw some Geoff Lawton video showing his tubs with only a fabric sheet over them...perhaps that is the answer?
4 years ago
Good to hear Michael
I have had good results with our and neighboring cats who seem to be catching 1-2 rabbits (babies mind you) per day. So far we have some minimal damage.
You idea was a good one for using the electric fencing...
I almost got some portable fencing...
Ferris electric fencing
4 years ago
Okay
Things are getting weird. First my hugel mound was cooking....still seems to be...now the small potatoes mounds are heating up as you can see in the attached image.
The potatoes were placed onto some hard, compacted ground and I've been placing a soil/compost blend over them as they come up. Yesterday they looked a bit stressed...i put my hand in the ground and it was warm, I confirmed this with a compost thermometer. I guess the active mound is influencing the small potato hills?
4 years ago

Ted Jurney wrote:Very cool. Will you be diluting before application? Like this design. Compost suspended in a bag? Do you have a microscope? Id like to start using AACT here at home and at farm. Whats your application plan?



Hi Ted
I'm not planning on diluting the tea as I've read of mixed results on this. The compost is added to the water (no bag) which suits me as we are applying the finished product with watering cans. I really want a microscope, without one your flying blind...I'm working on it....Short term plan it to apply to some growing areas which are, in my mind, not performing as they should despite compost applications. I'm interested in a larger unit, 50 Gallon unit for next year. I may even plumb this into our irrigation system. I'll let you know how it performs.
4 years ago