M.R.J. Smith

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since Jul 20, 2014
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North Idaho at 975m elevation on steep western slope, 60cm annual precipitation, zone 4
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Recent posts by M.R.J. Smith

Hello everyone in this thread, I will join this endeavor and I also have generalizable permaculture design based interest for you all. As you can see in the images attached, I have utilized the permaculture idea of minimizing waste and mimicking patterns to create a template where on a single sheet of paper you can fold it to create its own envelope which seals with only a stamp while none of the writing is visible while folded and 100% of the non-visible space is utilized for writing. It is also the minimum size when folded to be sent by US mail which maximizing writing space. If you are interested in how to make the template or how to fold such a letter, which adds a very tasty flavor to your letters in my opinion, let me know and I’ll help you.
5 years ago
Anyone have experience? I know you can do this with normal wood stoves. The previous owner did stuff I need not explain but basically secured that only a 6” pipe can go through the cieling, but I want an 8” system. Will it work? How much vertical draw will I need for the transition to not throttle it and back draft?
5 years ago
Another option not discussed here worked for me and my hell hound. This might get some negative feedback but it really doesn't hurt that bad put it on and shock yourself first if you want, I did.

Get a shock collar and crank it to max power, slap it on him and when he goes for the chicken, boom. If he goes for it again and he's not so smart, boom again. He shouldn't ever do it again. Cheaper and easier than fencing. My dog will defeat any physical fence eventually if determined, mental fences are harder to cross.

The thing is, a fence gives permission to cross it as long as you can, you've conditioned the dog to think- Oh there's a fence let's see if I can get in this is fun. With the collar his only conditioning is "whoa what the hell I went for this chicken and got shocked not sure why but I don't like that so I'm not doing that anymore."  Key is to hide behind a tree or something and let him loose so that he thinks he decision to go for the chicken results in shock (classical conditioning) NOT "my master tells me not to go for the chicken and then I do and get shocked" you want it to be HIS choice not to go for them.
7 years ago
So, I hear so much this sentiment in permaculture discussions "Plant what grows well in your climate and go from there" Or "look at what's growing and plant stuff like that"

Practically, I have not so much botany knowledge and I was wondering if anyone had a good online resource like Plants for a future that instead of entering conditions, you enter in a plant name and it gives you useful stuff similar to that which would grow. I'm talking no irrigation "SHUN" stuff.

I researched on this site and found out about PFAF, but there's no option to do "Similar to ______________" Any ideas or is PFAF really the best bet right now and just try to narrow the conditions down. I ask because saying soil is "sandy" and needs to be "drought tolerant", etc is useful, but the plants themselves describe a climate much better than the words because other sandy and seasonally wet/dry sites have WAY different plants growing than at my site, even just a few miles away!
7 years ago
We have land almost exactly like what you describe. It's a  blessing and a curse- just like everything. Just think of the pros- drainage, gravity irrigation, frost pocket control, etc. there are just as many patterns on slopes as on flat land- you just have to observe and keep an open mind. You would be remiss to buy sloped land and try to  treat it like flat land- its not and any preconceived notions you have about it could be counterproductive.

That being said, access is a pain- that's really the only con in my mind. Be sure to plan it very wisely because it's a lot of work to put in. Everything is more work, really but as Baruch Spinoza says "all things excellent are as difficult as they are rare."

I'm glad I'm not a flat-lander. Living in the mountains is badass.

Edit: I second the notion that terraces are easier than people make them out to be. I use the exact rebar/pile logs and soil method as well and it's pretty darn easy. I call them hugel-terraces because I hope plant roots will hold the soil together by the time the green logs start to decay.
7 years ago
This looks like a course for flatlanders as I'm not seeing much slopage in the pics. When you say "exhaustive" in the daily-ish, does that include us more vertically-oriented mountain folk?  Is there a syllabus for the course or something?

Edit- syllabus is under "read more" at bottom of kickstarter page- there is some mention of topography, but I'm curious about serious topography.
7 years ago
I take a mix of Nietzsche and Hegel's Aesthetic view plus an Aristotelian Virtue ethics perspective of sorts. Here's how I argue for it:

I first ask: What is the purpose of life?

When we have talked about theirs for a while, if and only if they ask for mine, I respond:

To live the most beautiful life possible, expressing my human nature to the maximum extent.

To which it is quite simple to argue for a permaculture perspective. I'm sure everyone here can issue their own reasons for why this lifestyle is so beautiful and fulfills our nature as human beings.
7 years ago

My main hobby is recording music. I do all the writing, recording, performing, mixing etc myself. It may be interesting to note that it is the whole process, not just being able to play a song or write a song clicks for me.
7 years ago
Ok thanks, I have officially learned the ways of the forums and will promote the cause from now on.
Behold the post of shame for all to see!

How do you check your status of cores vs. full apples?