Aj Richardson

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since Dec 17, 2020
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Recent posts by Aj Richardson

I decided to start with some yeast traps. Will see how it goes. Theres already some mosquitoes in one of them, and 2 fruitflies in another, and I put them out last night. Might need to hang them to get more fruit flies.
1 month ago
Has anyone here had experience with burning around the base of fruit trees to help control fruit flies?

I ask, because I've discovered several fruit trees on my property, pear, peach, apple, sumac, asian dogwood, raspberries and blackberries, and more. But we lost ALL the fruit to flies this year before it even got ripe. The property was unmanaged for 5 years before we bought it, so its not like it was being sprayed with pestacides either.

Mosquitoes, fruit flies, and biting gnats are aweful at their various times of the year, partially due to very wet clay soil im guessing. So I am considering clearing the ferns and blackberries away from the fruit trees, and burning around the bases in a controlled manner to kill any over wintering fly larvae. Would this work?  Is there a better option? Again, there is just such a population of these flies that there arent nearly enough predators to come close to keeping up.

Any suggestions welcome! (Apparently there are some beetles too, but not nearly as many as the flies)
1 month ago
Anyone have any experience with this gall on their grapes? Just moved here this year, some vines are super thick, so i dont want to lose them if possible. Thought i was going to get a ton of grapes but instead ive got galls.
4 months ago
I'm not aware of any printer that can use shredded plastic, as by their nature, they use gears to feed the just-hot-enough plastic through a tiny hole (the extrusion process, it doesnt actually melt the plastic, just warm it)

What you could do is make your own extruder or look for a plastic extruder. Depending on the printer you would want particular sizes. Either 1.75mm or 2.85mm diameter.

The plastic that works best that you probably have on hand is HDPE (high density poly ethylene). That's your milk jugs and things like that.

There may be some youtube videos on custom extruder, but I imagine modifying an oil extruder may work if you have the right tools. Buying an extruder can be expensive, upwards of $3000 last time I looked (I taught 3d printing maintenance and building to highschool students, and was hoping to do the same thing)
5 months ago
Since this post is about identifying elderberry, ive got the plant below growing in my yard. Plant.id says its red elderberry, but i cant find photos of elderberry at this stage or with this color blossoms. Is that a correct identification?
5 months ago
So last night i woke up to a scratching sound. Figured it was a mouse so i shined my phone light on it. Found this huge beetle. Some kind of carrion beetle im guessing. I captured it in an empty icecream container and let it go outside this morning.
6 months ago
While I dont know if there is a technical term for it,  that's what I'm currently working on! I dont think keeping the wildlife out is ideal, instead I'm attempting to have more food than the wildlife can reasonably eat, produced all year round. The expectation is that having lots of wildlife eating the berries and such will attract predators that will keep the populations of 'pest' critters in check.

I also will have a veggie garden that will likely be fenced in so I can have a guarenteed food crop.

In short, I hope that it works, and I'll find out over the next few years!
6 months ago
Ok, spring is upon us. I wandered the property looking at everything and trying to identify everything i could.

I found:

Wild grapes (fox grape hopefully),
Something that is either rose or similar,
Bristly dewberry

Striped maple,
Red maple,
Paper birch,
White birch
Black birch
Red oak,
LOTS of sumac (staghorn I think, cut one down that was about 6" in diameter by my power lines!)
Hemlock and other pine variants

I am excited to discover more!
There are already 8 raised beds (4'x8') in the area I was thinking of for a garden. Theres tons of blackberry in them right now, but ill leave them alone this year and see what comes up. I plan to make 4 more beds next to them for my tomatoes and other plants.

There is also a MASSIVE woodchuck living under a shed. He's about 3 ft long and really fat. We've named him Sir Charles, but he may become dinner if he goes after my garden. I hope theres enough food for him elsewhere.
6 months ago
So closing took much longer than expected, but as of today, we own it! Im sitting here crying from happiness because the previous owner had set up a 10 year stewardship plan, and left all the documentation in a binder for me! It talks about the plants on the property,  how to manage them, the soil type, and tons of other useful info I thought I would need to spend time collecting!

So it looks like ive got red oak, hemlock, black birch, yellow birch, beech, red maple, a few white pine, maybe some sugar maple and chestnut! I had already identified the mountain laurel from my walk through, but theres witch hazel too!

Ill update with more info when i finish digging through this binder!
9 months ago
Im closing on a house in western MA in 2 weeks, and I would be happy to get some sunchokes started in the spring! My wife and I just discovered how tasty they are this past fall. Not sure what I could trade for them, other than computer/electronics expertise at this point, but I would be happy to buy them if I dont have something you need!
9 months ago