gary koch

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since Mar 21, 2010
Bellingham (NW) WA
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Recent posts by gary koch

Hi blot101,

I've been considering carp for my system to be for the same reasons.  Tough, hardy, cold tolerant, tasty, market for E. European folks in the area who like the fish.

I've eaten it twice in Poland, and it was great.  They used special forks with widely spaced tines to pull the meat off of the skeleton.  Will eat it ourselves to begin with.  I've been told of mirror carp and leather carp as good varieties for possible AP type set-ups.  And thanks for the video link.

Gary
8 years ago
Hi Chelle,

Gary Donaldson, in AU, says that they have found that the maximum height you can wick water upwards is 300mm.  More wicking materials in the soil, the better.  I had 4 wicking containers over the summer as an experiment.  The soil was bulk purchased mix spiked with rabbit manure, worm castings and worms.  The containers were 400mm high, which was nice as it left a reservoir of 100mm for the water.  I had 3 tomatoes and one winter squash.  They worked well as far as water maintenance went, like filling the bottom once a week even during sunny summer.  Still the soil quality sucked.  You  couldn't rely on a newly trasplanted plant to have the roots to really avail themselves of the system.  But top watering will they were established got them to that point.  Will try again next summer.

Where are you located? I am in coastal NW WA.  Look around norcalaquaponics.com for ideas.

Gary
8 years ago
Hey all,

I've eaten carp several times in Poland and it was delicious and not all that bony.  I prefer big bones in a fish than the size you have to delicately mush around your mouth to discover a sliver of bone.  At any rate, they are prized around the world as food.  In Poland, they are part of a traditional Chistmas meal, which is a very sumptuous affair.

People buy them ahead of time and keep them in fresh clean water to clean them out.  I had it breaded and fried.  Big meaty steaks and the bones were avoided by using a fork with wide stout tines.  It pulled the meat from the fish leaving the big strong bones attached to the spine.

I was considering tank raising them here in the PNW both for us to eat and for possible holiday sales to the local slavic communities.  I have a big Polish cookbook.  I'll look up the process of butchering and preparing if anyone would like it.
8 years ago
Hi Joel,

We are set to run the bio-assays on our beds and remaining purchased soils.  Thanks for the reminder.  We have been looking over other gardens in town to see what their plants look like.  They mostly all look subnormal.  But then, it's been a cold and subnormal summer here.  Even tomatoes under plastic have somewhat cupped leaves.

Another complicating factor is that the tomato in question is a Stupice, a variety I've never grown before; different leaf shape, different stem structure as well?  The super Lakotas look like everyone elses, which is to say passable.

So, we'll wait and see what turns out from the beds.  We'll do the bio-assays.  Maybe it's another tempest in a teapot, tho some places have been impacted.

One always gets by and half of our beds were not topped off with this mixture.  Is the produce of affected plants safe to eat?  Monocots and fungi as well?

Thanks,
g
8 years ago
Hey all,

Whatcom Co, WA is coming down with a widespread case of contamination to purchased industrial soils from dirty dairy manure compost.  No news in the local paper...no surprise there but it is being addressed by the WSU Extension office.

It appears that Dow Chemical produces several related herbicides used on grasslands/hayfields to control broadleafed "undesirables" and the residues are deforming plants in home gardens .  The chemical passes quickly thru the animal gut and is deposited intact in the manure and urine.  The chemical appears to be only minutely borken down during composting.

So, now neighbors are scratching our heads and trying to regroup from this latest example of corporate/business malfeasance.  No one is in control of your welfare but you, unfortunately.

Our garden is affected but not devestated but some have been.  Here is a link provided by WSU.  Seems like it's one of the usual "no one is in charge" processes.  Whatever can be sold is sold.  Caveat emptor once again.

http://transitionwhatcom.ning.com/profiles/blogs/a-new-problem-with-commercial

g
8 years ago
Hey all,

Gary here from Bellingham WA.  Hey Tel, neat website.

I was looking over places in OZ to learn more about food, energy, etc and thought of Tasmania, the Permaculture State.  Their website  http://permaculturetas.org ; doesn't have alot going on.  Which was a bit of a disappointment, being where they are located and all.  But, the admin would like to have more people visit and stay involved if such a thing would suit any of us here.  I've been posting links, same name, cucuteni. 

If you want to take a looksee and afford them a bit of time and involvement/encouragement I know he'd appreciate it.  I'd like to see it take off, eh?  Seriously...

Good summer to you all.  It's been chilly and cloudy up here in B'ham.  The tomatoes look better than I would have thought;  Stupice and Super Lakota from Uprising Seeds.  The does they are akindling...

Gary
Good morning all,

Glad to have come across the draft animal topic.  I was lucky enough to have been able to work with  friends who was good with animals.  We were working at an historical farm outside of Gainesville, FL called Dudley Farm.  In the beginning, prior to the park being officially a state site, there were just the 3 of us routinely myself along with the ranger Sally, her partner Jerry and several volunteers.

We pulled alot of building rock, plowed some and ground sugar cane using Pete the mule.  Sadly, my friend Jerry is gone and so is Pete the mule.  Animals are not only useful, but they ground you back in sync with your being an animal yourself and being proud of that fact.

I started training a pair of dairy calves after that; Bud and Okie.  It was likely one of the most quietly satisfying things I've done.  Alas, we didn't get much beyond walking to the highway and back with them wearing their PVC training yoke.  They did learn whoa, get up, gee, haw and stand still.  I called them my oxi-morons. 

Given a choice between mules and oxen, I'd take the oxen.  I'm sure they each have their area of expertise.  I like oxens' placid patient ways.

I found a good book on oxen a few years back while on a trip to the Freiburg Fair in Maine:  The Oxen Handbood by Drew Conroy and Dwight Barney.  The fair was the best ag fair I've attended.

Yeah, animals are good folks.

Gary/Cucuteni

9 years ago
Hey everyone,

Gary Koch here from Bellingham (NW) WA.  Just joined this morning.

As I understand it, nettles are high in protein.  When wilted/dried to take the sting out, they make good food for people, rabbits and about any critter.  And they certainly are perennial.  Still waiting on mine to come up this spring.  (Hmmm.)

I have rabbits at the moment, but had chickens and other larger critters while in N. FL several years ago.  Orpingtons are wonderful birds.  Quiet, docile, too big to get far off the ground.  My all around fave is Black Australorps.  Bred in OZ from orpingtons, I would suppose from the name.  They foraged well in NFL, were quiet, ate less than their larger cousins and laid brown eggs well.

Here in the PNW I discovered nettles.  They dry and powder well for soups and (probably) smoothies.  They should cure as hay for use later in the year.  Tie a clump together to dry and hanging it with the birds should be a good idea for storable winter protein.


9 years ago