Archive for the 'frugality&(free)cycling' Category

A fungal experiment

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

I bought a huge clump of oyster mushrooms in the store a couple days ago. Josh and I refer to them as the beef jerky of the plant world – when crispy-fried in olive oil with just a sprinkle of sea salt and a dash of soy sauce glazed onto them at the last minute, […]

A castle made of trash

Monday, November 23rd, 2015

The duck house is nearly finished. I started building it a couple weeks ago because it suddenly dawned on me that a) winter is coming and the old duck coop had no shelter, and b) winter vacations are coming up and the ducks really need to be somewhere more secure than under a single flimsy layer of […]

Resigned to raised beds

Tuesday, July 21st, 2015

I’ve resigned myself to the fact that my farm area is suited more for growing rice than veggies. This year has been especially wet, with thunderstorms nearly every other day, and my garden is suffering. Despite all the work I’ve done to raise the beds through copious additions of organic matter every year, the water […]

First split

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015

My new colony is doing great – the population absolutely exploded! In fact it boomed so much that the last week when I checked, every single frame in a two-deep was full of brood. I happily put on an extra box and walked away. You’d think this would be a good thing, right? Except I […]

Easiest self-waterer ever.

Saturday, June 20th, 2015

I’ve always wanted to make some of my bigger pots out in the garden into self-watering pots – the kind where you fill a reservoir in the bottom of the pot and the water slowly wicks up into the soil so you can go way, way longer between having to water. In fact this spring, […]

Black gold, and a free pallet bin

Thursday, April 9th, 2015

One of my very first harvests every Spring is black, not green. I deliberately set my coop’s run directly on the soil in order to be able to use the deep bedding method. The method is simple: every time the bedding starts to look gross, you add another deep layer of organic material on top. It’s that simple. […]

Recycled rainwater chickens

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

What is it Paul Wheaton is famous for saying: that permaculture lets him be as lazy as he really is? Meaning that people can go to extraordinary lengths to find easier methods for doing tasks they dislike. He was referring to avoiding weeding, fertilizing, and planting through the use of guilds and perennial food crops; […]

Feeding the chooks

Friday, April 12th, 2013

I’ve been fed up lately with the rising cost of organic chicken feed. It’s gone up from $30 to $40, probably due in part to the storms and drought through the corn belt last year, which means that during their best laying months, my girls’ egg output is just covering the cost of their room […]

From bother to bounty

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

Of all the homeowner’s chores we have to deal with every year, raking up fallen leaves is probably the one we hate the most. It’s the chore we keep putting off long past the point of procrastination, because not only is it tedious, but there’s just so much of it, and we have so little […]

Convenience food makeover: Instant Oatmeal packets

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

We ran out of Quaker Oats Instant Oatmeal packets – one of Sofía’s regular breakfast staples – the other morning. Little paper packets full of mostly-sugar and fake flavorings that microwave up to an appetizing gray mush. Yum. They really aren’t that high in calories, even given that they are mostly sugar, and I thought […]