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Jason Hernandez

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since May 15, 2016
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Recent posts by Jason Hernandez

Daron Williams wrote:
Question 1: Why do you want to grow food in a way that's good for the environment?

Question 2: What's the hardest part about it?

Your answers will really help me make sure the content on Wild Homesteading is helpful for you and others!

1. Without an environment, there won't be any food.

2. These tropical pasture grasses are so aggressive, I can't keep up with cutting them back. I have to hire labor. And none of the locals think it can be done without glyphosate.
1 week ago
I started with tropical pasture, so in that sense I am perhaps like the oak savanna, in that there is grass in between the trees and no closed canopy. But my goal is recovering forest, and who knows whether I might live long enough to see it become like mature forest. Mature forest would be a nice goal, but I'm not sure I have a big enough area to allow it, since I will need to keep those open spaces for my sweet potatoes, taro, and yuca.
1 week ago
The water that comes out of a dehumidifier or air conditioner -- like all water condensed from vapor -- is distilled water. Now, I have seen in the health food literature that one should not drink distilled water, because it will leach minerals from the body through osmosis; but I can't figure out the logic there, because it seems to me that when I metabolize that water, the minerals it took from me would be put right back.

Rain water is distilled water -- it is condensed from vapor. As I understand it, the reason it doesn't leach minerals out of plants is that in the process of percolating down through the soil, it gets remineralized by the time it reaches the roots. So -- following my train of thought here -- it should be okay to water plants with the water from an air conditioner, because it would pick up minerals in the process of percolating down through the soil.

Am I on the right track, or have I omitted something?
1 week ago

Mark Seasigh wrote:
Plus, it produces flat peaches that look like doughnuts, or tires, or flying saucers, or what have you; furthermore, these peaches are super Juicy and Delicious!

Those are the ones I have seen sold as "Saturn peaches." A former coworker had a little fun with a city slicker who didn't know about them; he said the reason they're so expensive is that they're grown on Saturn!
1 week ago
Hmmm, tough choice. Ask me again another time, and I will likely answer differently, but as of this moment...

I'm going to say breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis). It grows into such a towering tree (the specific epithet, altilis, means approximately, "growing in the heights'); its leaves are really cool looking; and it grows like an inverse banyan, i.e. wherever a root reaches the surface, it sends up a new trunk, so that one tree eventually becomes a whole grove. The fruits while still firm are a good source of daily calories (if Christ had been born in Polynesia instead of the Middle East, the Paternoster might say, "give us this day our daily breadfruit"), and as it ripens and becomes mushy, it also sweetens. Either way, it is so filling, I can't eat it in one meal, but have to spread it over two meals. Once, as I walked home after a weary day, I came upon a familiar young breadfruit tree by the roadside and I just had to stop and hug her, I loved her so much. She had provided me with so many tasty meals, I was overwhelmed with gratitude!

I have to mention a few others, "runners-up," we might say...

Caribbean prickly-ash (Zanthoxylum caribaeum): its thorny trunk means cows are unlikely to push over a fence made from it, and its leaves are food for several species of swallowtails.
Guacimo (Guazuma ulmifolia): I was introduced to this tree while an undergrad student, on my first trip outside the United States; some of my colleagues nicknamed it the "granola tree."
Coconut (Cocos nucifera): who doesn't love coconut water drunk right out of the nut on a tropical day? Who hasn't seen a travel brochure picturing a perfect beach lined with coconut trees?
2 weeks ago

Joseph Lofthouse wrote:I love making crosses between different species and/or genera. How about you? Any of you involved in that sort of thing? How about crosses between domesticated species and their wild ancestors?

Haven't had a chance to try this, but I have been curious: we know that Queen Anne's lace is just a carrot reverted to the wild (Daucus carota). I have hear of people re-domesticating it through careful selection over the years. Now, parts of North America have their own native species, Daucus pusilla. I have long been curious as to whether this, too, can be domesticated into a garden carrot.

Dc Brown wrote:
"Catching rainwater was illegal" There's a law I have zero respect for. Made by muppets, for muppets.

It comes from water rights being sold separately from land rights. Unless you buy the water rights to your land, whoever owns the water rights can say you are stealing their water if you catch rainwater. I consider it an immoral law, too, but it came about because in places like Colorado, large scale farming required more irrigation water than the farmed land itself could provide; to make it work, farmers had to buy water from off-farm.
2 weeks ago
I have read that many spice seeds are treated with some kind of gas to prevent them germinating. I do know that I have not succeeded in getting cardamom seeds to germinate, nor star anise, nor malagueta (West Indian bay). On the other hand, my huge crop of cilantro a couple years ago came from a jar of coriander seeds from the spice aisle.
2 weeks ago