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Jarret Hynd

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since Apr 17, 2017
250mm of Rainfall, Average Windspeed 10kph & Prevailing WNW.
Sask, Canada - Zone 3b
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Recent posts by Jarret Hynd

There is a seller on permies, which Trace seems to have found already.

Where I am in Canada, they seed out in August. If it wasn't for complications with international shipping, I'd have no issue sending some as I'm surrounded by acres of them.

Best of luck in your searches.

Wesley Kohn wrote: Why aren't Weck Jars used in North America??

Just for the record: I think you are spot on when it comes to canning, but that is only one 1 part of the equation. I will attempt to paint a picture for why I think they aren't used in North America.

I own 400+ mason jars, which include around 80 antique ones with glass tops. The main use for the standard ones when I was actively canning 2 years ago was in regards to growing mushrooms on rye grain, which required sterilizing the grains by pressure cooking them in jars. I've since started to use them(new mason jars) regularly for bottling maple syrup.


Wesley Kohn wrote:1. Ball/Kerr jars require annual purchases and are fragile.
2. They cannot be stably stacked.
3. The lids are are a one time use and, per some sources, have a shelf life.
4. You cannot reheat the food in the jar.
5. You cannot freeze in the jar.

1. I think if this were true, no one would buy them. I haven't replaced any of my jars in the last 4 years. In fact, my jars were put through an additional stress test. I live in an extremely rural area, so ordering through an online retailer saved me a lot of road trips over the years. 250+ mason jars were shipped to me through the mail, some travelling 1000's of KM with almost no bubble wrap in the packaging, and only 2 jars in the same dozen were broken on arrival.

2. I agree that the standard jars are a pain in the butt to stack. But, the 250ml / 500ml widemouth jars are easily stackable.

3. Yeah, the lids are pretty fragile and have a limited lifespan. I can't say for certain how long they last in regards to canning usage, but I would assume most people do their canning once a year in the fall, and as such, they'd probably get a couple years usage out of the lids.

4. Not in a microwave, which for some is a big negative point. I don't use a microwave, so if I have to defrost something I just leave in in the sink over night and use it the next day when it's thawed. I have some older pots that work with my induction stove top though, so heating up soup or sauce takes less than 5 minutes.

5. Not sure where you got this from or if I misunderstood what you mean, but from personal experience (freezing maple syrup and soup stock/hummus, etc), along with standard internet searches "how to freeze ___ in a mason jar", it seems a lot of people are able to freeze food in their mason jars.



I can buy a dozen 1 litre mason jars for $0.80 each, and if I catch a sale they're $0.65 each. Similar prices for 250/500ml jars.

Based on the Weck Jar site you linked, a 3 mold jar combo pack is $15. And something interesting to note: the homepage image has over $150 worth of Weck Jars - so we're potentially talking about 200 mason jars vs 20 weck jars.


Less people are cooking at home than ever in North America, and so it's even less likely that new people are continuing the tradition of canning compared to previous decades. A premium product like these Weck Jars don't have much of a chance to build a following outside of a few canning enthusiasts for that reason.


On the Weck Jar site the first image you see is variously shaped jars holding dry food in a cupboard. Many of the jars are $5-20 per unit, but are only holding $1 worth of product like popcorn, chickpeas, rice, etc. Mason jars and glass/pyrex containers with plastic tops hold dry food perfectly fine in the mind of the average consumer.

To continue looking at the marketing efforts: the Canadian Weck Jar site.

weckjarscanada wrote: Our jars have been used for wedding favours, vases, candles, bath salts, pot pourri, desserts on the go, food, craft & decor storage to lighting fixtures, and more.

If the Weck Jars are truly superior in quality (like thicker glass), which I believe is true, this is something that should be at the forefront of their marketing campaign. Yet, they seem to be doing the opposite and trying to compete with Mason Jars at the crafting-level, which only hurts them in my view.


If I were a typical North American consumer, I could see myself buying 1 or 2 for reheating food in a microwave, though the pyrex glass with plastic lids do this equally well - and eating out of mason jars sucks because of the narrow top. Probably for any fermenting someone could use a few Weck Jars for kombucha or kim chi.

But, as I'm surrounded by serious canning folks out here in my rural setting, who each have 100+ jars they use in fall to can their home grown produce, I don't see why they'd spend/invest in $1000's of Weck Jars when their Mason Jars have worked perfectly fine for years/decades, aside from the occasional new lids.

And as already mentioned, I think if the Weck Jar company changed their marketing strategy to aim for the trendy/specialty North American consumer, they'd become at least a recognizable brand here. There is no reason that a person shouldn't own at least 1 Weck Jar, it's just that Weck doesn't do the work to convince people why they should buy their product. I would blame Weck's bad branding before blaming the American consumer base. (case-in-point with their poorly designed About Page)

5 months ago

Pearl Sutton wrote:Interesting, good link! They have duckduckgo tagged as "nonfree" I have used it for years and have never paid anything, anyone know what they mean?

In regards to programs and code, "free" isn't about price, but about users' freedom.

DuckDuckGo has some proprietary elements to it, meaning we can't see how some of the search engine works, so they could be doing surveillance as well. However, their privacy policy has legal ramifications if they were found to be lying about it, such as the FTC coming after them, so it's likely they aren't doing anything nefarious.
9 months ago

Kate Downham wrote:This is scary stuff. Seems really Orwellian and creepy...I wonder if I should stop using gmail and Android now, in preparation for any nasty stuff Google could do with these...

There is a long list of companies/programs that do this unfortunately. This link might be helpful

10 months ago
It was $23 New less than a year ago unfortunately. :(

This happens mostly because of how eCommerce has evolved. I'm not 100% sure, but my guess is that the algorithms of all the online sites study each others' products and prices in a way that similar to the stock market. When a scenario occurs where there are limited places that sell the book, many sites' prices seems to go crazy like this. Recently I noticed this problem with Power of Duck as well.

The only solution I can think of to fix this, is for Sepp/Publisher to pump out more books at a more reasonable price.

p.s the German version of it, Der Agrar- Rebell, is selling for $20.


Considering you are in the US, the best bet for now might be to add it to your wishlist and get notifications if any Used copies become available. Chances are it'll still be a high price on Thriftbooks as well, but likely not over the $100 mark at least. (even though the thumbnail is German, the language version below says English)
1 year ago
Hey Thomas, welcome to permies :)

I started work at a farm with a couple hundred sheep&cows recently, and was going to recommend a Hopper Trailer which is what we use. But after searching for an image of the Hopper Trailer I think by dumb luck I might have found what you are searching for, or at least close to it.



Mind you, I think that tote idea people are recommending sounds like a perfectly viable option, especially if you can modify it a little to work like the hopper in the pic.
1 year ago
Since you are in North America, I would suggest getting a hold of Edible Forest Gardens Volumes 1&2. The Permaculture Design Manual is the best overall for all things Permaculture, but the Edible Forest Volumes are more like encyclopedias. Which bacterium are beneficial to which plants, all the technical details to planting a food forest, which plants are the best Dynamic Accumulators, etc - even something as simple as how to properly dig a hole is explained in great detail. Diagrams and Graphs galore! I've only just skimmed through bits of them, but because the information is so specific to USA/Canada, I would suggest this as a better alternative to a PDC.

I see books and experience to be like getting the needed hours before one takes a driving test, and the PDC is the actually test, but that's just me. Because of the way PDC certification works with who can teach it, there are some people in the prairie provinces I would classify as Advanced Gardeners (or garden masters), yet they hold PDC certificates and teach permaculture. I believe though if they were placed in a rural pasture with the goal of restoring 100 acres, they'd likely be overwhelmed and have little knowledge to share. The knowledge I see being advertised for such courses and workshops is stuff that can be found in many $20-$50 permaculture books. If I'm going in for a $800-$1200 PDC, I'm taking the course to learn how to work on large scale(>5 acres) or advanced projects, likely with big EarthWork machines involved and lots of teaching of how to calculate the 100's of variables properly.

With that said, I think you get to join alumni forums in some cases, which gives you access to a lot of smart people that can help you further. Also if one lacks self-confidence even after years of growing&practicing, maybe that's a reason to get a PDC.
1 year ago

Jess Dee wrote:Jarret - I am quite intrigued with your tomato circles.  This would solve a couple of problems for me (what to do with greywater from the kitchen sink, and also growing tomatoes, as we don't generally water our garden, and they don't do well for us because of it). Can you elaborate on your technique?  Thanks!

I actually experimented with the concept before I even knew what permaculture was, because I had found an old trampoline frame at the landfill and figured I could make it work as a trellis. The first circle was just tomatoes planted about 8 inches apart and everything was mulched within the trampoline space - there was no pit involved. That was a great year overall with a bumper crop of all produce, so it's hard to draw conclusions from that year.

The 2nd time I tried it this year though, I made some smaller circles that were 3 feet in diameter with some kind of junk garden fence I found - it's a little stronger than chickenwire. I dug a hole 1 foot deep and put some "paper" logs (those that are very decomposed) in the middle. It's hard to say if this recent changes to the circle were better or not for Tomatoes, because of a freak hail storm on July 10th that pretty much flattened everything. Before that point I was sure I'd be enjoying peppers and tomatoes by the start of August as fruit was already forming.

Jess Dee wrote:  How many tomato plants do you put in the circle?

The 1st year I planted about 40 of them, but by mid-season there were 20 big ones crawling all over each other. I also added potted tomatoes in a few spaces, but they did not perform nearly as well as the ones in the ground.

The 2nd year for some reason I didn't grow many tomatoes, so I think only 8-10 got planted into each circle.

Just to note: It's interesting that in the article a very important stat isn't mentioned, which is mentioned in the PDC videos by Geoff Lawton. An Australian University compared the production of conventional rows of Bananas found in plantations vs that in Banana Circles, and the Banana Circles were 81(?) times more productive when you consider inputs and outputs. But then again, that's in a climate that's best at growing bananas, and Sask is not the ideal place to be growing Tomatoes outdoors. If I ever get the chance, I'll try a Tomato Circle in a greenhouse.

Jess Dee wrote:  Do you plant a root crop similar to the taro in the article?

You mean within the Tomato Circles? I probably would try carrots, but I struggle to grow them for whatever reason - Hutterite carrots are fairly cheap and good tasting anyways. Remember that the Banana Tree is huge and can reach far out for nutrients which leaves enough space for the taro to grow in. I feel as though many root crops would just compete with the annual tomatoes in our already rough conditions, but experimenting never hurts.

Jess Dee wrote:What else do you plant in that patch?  

Tried herbs last year such as marjoram and basil, but they didn't seem to work well because of the way tomato circles grow they end up getting shaded out. I'm going to be planting a lot of parsley this year as it was one of the few plants that was unharmed by hail, loved being in the natural soil (unlike most herbs which need pots) and is reasonably shade-tolerant. I'll be trying fennel this year as well, so we'll see how it goes.

Jess Dee wrote: Do you rotate crops in the circles (or would you?) or keep the same plant set there each year?

I'm not sure what to think of crop rotation, though with most of the above-ground veggies I still do use the technique, so yes the circles are moved each year.

But, my guess is that my 2nd year hugel which I'm using for potatoes will work out fine for years to come, so I see no reason why any plant should have to be moved around each year as long as the microbes in the soil are in a good balance.


I still have a few years of testing to go before I can say anything concrete about the "proper" settings for Sask Tomato Circles.

I have started to do ground-level, densely planted potatoes in recent years - talked it here. This may seem counter intuitive-based on what you originally explained, but the results I was getting from the traditional method were piss-poor at best. Note that I do not baby any of my plants at all once they are in the ground. Ex. The hugel potatoes got watered 4 times last season, but it was a real drenching/deep-watering.

I take our increasingly changing weather patterns seriously and am trying to prepare/adapt accordingly.  

Monty Loree wrote:This dry weather is going to make it so that it will take many years to learn basic gardening, and how to deal with dry...

The one thing that I did well last year:
I planted 50 tomatoes... and by each tomatoe, I put in a 6-8" length of weeping tile... - 4 "  perforated pipe.  So I was getting water right by the roots..
I cut 50 pieces of this pipe... and it worked well for the tomatoes... I was watering 1 hour per night... which got to be tiresome.. but the tomatoes were well watered...
I will probably have to do something like this for the rest of the garden...

Good work, as it takes a lot of dedication to water every few nights.

Watering is something I hate spending so much time on, but I'm also trying to use the least amount of plastic possible. I have 100' of drip irrigation and lots of scrap 3' pipe laying around I could use, but my goal is to create a food production system anyone can use without having to buy a lot of stuff. Of course I had to suck it up and admit that the use of some plastic is unavoidable here.  

Doing the different types of earthworks as you mentioned before (hugels, swales, etc) seem to be a necessary starting point for any Sask gardener though.
It seems you have managed to rally all the Sask people to this thread. Good work, Monty :)

Everyone's given you plenty of good advice already to start with, so I'll just add a few small observations. When I first started using mulch on rows, I placed it in an 8 inch radius around the plants. However, the 30'C sun heats up all the ground outside the 8 inch area which ended up drying the soil under the mulch as well. To combat this issue, I go mulch an extra 3 feet around the edge of the planting area, along with the walking paths which also helps reduce compaction/weeds.

Then there is covercropping, which I leave to the mallow&alfalfa to take care of in order to prevent any bare hot spots from occurring in the garden. Though if you wanted something more conventional, you could grow clover in bare areas which is also leguminous. Mallow explodes in grow in the heat of summer, is easy to chop&drop or just pull out, and if you are adventurous it tastes pretty good in soup&salads.

There is also a technique from the tropics known as Banana Circles, which I adapted to create Tomatoes Circles. Having alternated between rows and circles for 4 years now, I won't ever use rows again for Tomatoes as the evidence is clear to me that circles are more productive. (at least in an outdoor environment)    

Lastly, note that mulch can be a double-edged sword, as from what I've seen any rain less than 0.8 inches will barely dampen the first inch of soil, so you need to be diligent with checking how dry the soil is around your plants and water appropriately.

Bryant RedHawk wrote: In Regina you might find that having a hoop house would benefit you greatly by giving you a longer growing season as well as helping with dry conditions during the growing season, along with reducing irrigation losses.  

I will be growing a majority of my tomatoes and peppers in a roughly built Walipini created last Fall out of frustration. $1/square foot is chump change compared to missing out on a season because of unpredictable weather. I will be enjoying hot peppers in 2019!
Hey Roberto, welcome to Permies :)

Su Ba's list is excellent. I would suggest starting with the points 1, 5 & 6, as those are all about the elimination of negatives. If one doesn't remove the negatives, then the positive habits don't have as much impact, which makes people think that good habits are not actually helpful and proceed to give up in trying to change.  

With that said, I would be cautious with any strict diets that may be recommended to you. Try them certainly, but introduce them at a slow pace - some bodies do not respond well to doing 180 degree changes in many areas in such a short amount of time. (changing diet, changing eating patterns, changing sleep pattern, etc.)

From what I've learned about various diets, the only certainty I can tell you is to eat as much locally grown food as possible. In the end though, you'll have to be the one to figure out which food group(s) are best suited for you. :)  


There is a book I only got to skim through as I ended up busy with other projects, but if you make an account you can be put on the waiting list for when it's your turn to borrow it for 14 days.
Herbs the Magic Healer

Herbs, especially fresh, are good for a lot aliments or cleansing, but as others have said: don't consider them a cure-all, as no single element is.
1 year ago