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Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby PeakOiler » Mon 26 Dec 2011, 08:12:33

Yesterday (for Christmas) I received a bay laurel tree from my friends. :) It is six feet tall!

It is still in a small pot and I will re-pot it today in a larger pot.

So, I had to do a little reading on bay laurel and found this web page:

http://www.veggiegardeningtips.com/bay-laurel-plants/

Uh oh. Bay laurel is not freeze tolerant.

In its native Mediterranean climate Bay Laurel is an evergreen tree reaching heights of over forty feet. In Northern climates Sweet Bay will grow like a shrub or small plant and is normally maintained at about six feet in height. If your growing region experiences cold, freezing temperatures Bay plants should be grown in containers and moved indoors during the winter.


Sweet Bay can withstand the heat of summer and will grow best when allowed to spend as much time outdoors as possible. Delay bringing your Bay Laurel inside until late fall but don’t subject the plants to any freezing weather conditions.


(Bold emphasis mine.)

I'm running out of sunny window space for my plants in the house!
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby rangerone314 » Wed 28 Dec 2011, 03:38:15

A California Bay Laurel (Umbellularia californica) will produce similar leaves but can live in zones as cold as Zone 4.
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby PeakOiler » Wed 28 Dec 2011, 09:10:15

I checked the label on the bay laurel pot and it is "lauris nobilus."

So I looked that up and found this pdf article:

http://www.herbsociety.org/factsheets/bay.pdf

I noted that the tree can be "topiary" (a new word I learned today.) Good. Because I brought the tree into the house and the top is touching the eight-foot ceiling!

I'll top it in the springtime and hopefully get the plant to be a shrubbery.

"We want a shrubbery!"

Monty Python YouTube clip:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UbtcmjfKa8

I want it to look more like this:

http://www.about-garden.com/images_data ... seny-1.jpg
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby JimG » Wed 28 Dec 2011, 15:07:32

Started acquiring materials for a hoop house/polytunnel.

So far I have the 6 mil vinyl that's about 60' long. And some of the scrap wood. Ill likely buy the PVC in an effort to get it launched. Craigslist simply doesnt have everything...so Ill likely go to HD or Lowes and just pull the trigger on some 20' pieces of 1" (ID) PVC pipe.

This should be about 16x20 when complete...at least now I can get my seeds started in there, grow lettuce and pac choi year round, and get my peppers and tomatoes to actually grow ( and turn color even!) in Seattle in August.

This will also cut down on the critters who have used my garden as a buffet table for the last two seasons.

Huzzah!
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby rangerone314 » Wed 28 Dec 2011, 17:04:05

Today I weeded an area from my small pear tree to the "trumpet vine" tree stump (about 105 square feet) and re-mulched it. The goal being to over the winter have the entire area weeded except for a small strip along the driveway where I have perennials I don't want to disturb, which I will get in the spring.
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby PrestonSturges » Wed 28 Dec 2011, 22:34:05

I was at the pharmacy and they had a shopping cart of loose Christmas candles for sale. I bought 4 fat white 5 1/2" candles for less than $8.

We completed scoping the Mosin-Nagant 91/30 and gave it a turned down handle. It turned out really well.
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby Loki » Thu 29 Dec 2011, 18:11:36

PeakOiler, there are a couple mature Laurus nobilis at Portland's Hoyt Arboretum, which is probably zone 8. I remember being surprised that they were there, and so large and thriving. They may be more hardy than you think---Oregon State University's landscape plant website has their limit at zone 8.

But keeping it small may not be a bad plan either, one can only use so many bay leaves....
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby Loki » Thu 29 Dec 2011, 18:13:58

JimG, you might want to think about how to deal with wind when building your greenhouse. We had three of our large greenhouses (30x120) blow down last year in a freak wind storm. We rebuilt two of them and sunk anchors into the ground to keep the frame down. Using wiggle wire to seal the doors will also help. If the wind gets behind the doors the whole thing acts like a sail and just lifts right up. Siting it to take advantage of wind breaks is also a good idea.

Not sure how to secure PVC against wind, you might want to look into metal pipe that you can sink into the ground. Not sure how much it costs. I was looking at EMT conduit at Lowe's the other day and it cost $6.85 for 1” (10' length), or $9.65 for 1.25”. That might work, though you'd have to get a pipe bender.

Another option that some folks use to prevent wind damage is to roll up the sides, or take the plastic completely off during the winter, when we get most of our wind storms here in the Northwest. Snow is also a problem, lots of nursery greenhouses got flattened a couple years back when we had a major snow storm here in Oregon---that probably would have been a great time to salvage materials :lol:
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby PeakOiler » Thu 29 Dec 2011, 18:45:46

Loki wrote:PeakOiler, there are a couple mature Laurus nobilis at Portland's Hoyt Arboretum, which is probably zone 8. I remember being surprised that they were there, and so large and thriving. They may be more hardy than you think---Oregon State University's landscape plant website has their limit at zone 8.

But keeping it small may not be a bad plan either, one can only use so many bay leaves....


Interesting. I really would prefer to have it in the ground.

As far as having too many bay leaves, I don't think so. I think they would make good gifts for family and friends, as well as a profitable item at the local farmers market. Spices are a good trading commodity. (I could wager some in the 2013 PO.com Oil Price Challenge, lol!) The local grocery sells McCormick "Turkish" bay leaves at $5.99 for 5 grams. That's $1.12/gram, or $31.36/oz.! Nice. :)
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby Thralen » Thu 29 Dec 2011, 23:55:12

Loki wrote:Not sure how to secure PVC against wind, you might want to look into metal pipe that you can sink into the ground. Not sure how much it costs. I was looking at EMT conduit at Lowe's the other day and it cost $6.85 for 1” (10' length), or $9.65 for 1.25”. That might work, though you'd have to get a pipe bender.


EMT conduit bends fairly easily on its own (if using galvy or aluminum). What you may want to do is get some 2' or 3' rebar stakes, drive them into the ground halfway or more then slide the pvc over the pipes. You'll need a rubber hammer to tamp the pvc into the ground a bit as well. This is similar to some instructions for making a trellis for a raised bed and is how I've done mine. On mine I use the conduit over the rebar and in a couple of instances the conduit has bent. The rebar does a good job of holding everything in place though, especially if the ends of the conduit (or the pvc pipe for the hoops in this case) is driven a couple of inches into the ground.

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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby rangerone314 » Sat 31 Dec 2011, 22:25:56

A California bay laurel is not the same species but will give you similar leaves to harvest.

Friday, I got another large area re-weeded and re-mulched... the area around my small cherry tree. Hopefully I may be able to knock out the remaining weeding among the fruit trees on Sunday and Monday.
An ideology is by definition not a search for TRUTH-but a search for PROOF that its point of view is right

Equals barter and negotiate-people with power just take

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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Fri 06 Jan 2012, 07:47:30

Ive been reading up on sour dough
Bought a couple of bannetons,I've been stoking my sour dough mother sponge all week.
I had a good one going for a few years and it got very fury
I got scared and threw it out.
I should have kept the non fury bits just to keep the yeasts going.(but didnt know)
So take 2 using flour and pineapple juice.(its a few months old)
Basically trying to brush up on my skills bannetons allow you to have a sloppier dough that doesn't want to turn into flat bread, so you get great flavour,air bubbles and rustic charm.
When we build the community pizza oven I will be able to throw a few loaves in for the week, after we cook the pizzas.
and we have a hardy sponge to share with the community
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby rangerone314 » Fri 06 Jan 2012, 21:08:32

I finally came up with the appropriate flag for my doomstead:
Image
An ideology is by definition not a search for TRUTH-but a search for PROOF that its point of view is right

Equals barter and negotiate-people with power just take

You cant defend freedom by eliminating it-unknown

Our elected reps should wear sponsor patches on their suits so we know who they represent-like Nascar-Roy
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby rangerone314 » Sun 08 Jan 2012, 19:19:12

Finally finished weeding and mulching the fruit tree bed and then moved on the the portion of the blueberry bed that is not completely deweeded & mulched and did about 25 sqFt there.
An ideology is by definition not a search for TRUTH-but a search for PROOF that its point of view is right

Equals barter and negotiate-people with power just take

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Our elected reps should wear sponsor patches on their suits so we know who they represent-like Nascar-Roy
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby rangerone314 » Thu 19 Jan 2012, 01:32:14

This past weekend I weeded and mulched 90 out of the 150 remaining square feet of the blueberry area. I also discovered the outlet to the fourth stream (nicknamed "Gihon") that deadended near the southwest lawn. The western woods slopes, and in one spot, water comes up out of the ground and traveled to an area at the edge of the wood filled with rocks, sticks, debris, branches, etc and the grassy area past this has always tended to be marshy.

The weekend before last, I dug around the area of the stream that I had previously dug in an attempt to extend the stream closer to the main stream that goes north-south through the property, and found a small concrete culvert, somewhat clogged. Dug a bit more... was thinking about dumping blue dye there. But this past weekend after tending the chickens, I walked near the north-south stream (nicknamed "Perat") more than a hundred feet away from where the water trickled into the culvert and heard a slightly different trickling sound in a spot by the stream that didn't trickle before. Poked around and found that whatever blocked it before was gone and I found the other culvert opening and the water flowed right into the main stream.

There is a tiny 5th stream that comes out of the ground just past the blueberries that travels a mere 15 feet to the main north-south stream.
An ideology is by definition not a search for TRUTH-but a search for PROOF that its point of view is right

Equals barter and negotiate-people with power just take

You cant defend freedom by eliminating it-unknown

Our elected reps should wear sponsor patches on their suits so we know who they represent-like Nascar-Roy
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby AgentR11 » Sat 21 Jan 2012, 23:42:34

Today I learned that we're a subculture! Woot... I think.

Subculture of Americans prepare...
Yes we are, as we are,
And so shall we remain,
Until the end.
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby rangerone314 » Sun 22 Jan 2012, 00:14:55

AgentR11 wrote:Today I learned that we're a subculture! Woot... I think.

Subculture of Americans prepare...

I think I remember seeing that article a year or two ago on MSNBC or such, surprisingly.
An ideology is by definition not a search for TRUTH-but a search for PROOF that its point of view is right

Equals barter and negotiate-people with power just take

You cant defend freedom by eliminating it-unknown

Our elected reps should wear sponsor patches on their suits so we know who they represent-like Nascar-Roy
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby Loki » Sun 22 Jan 2012, 02:19:44

Made mozzarella today from raw milk I get locally, turned out really good, made this recipe a few times and it's always turned out well. Used some of it to make pizza. Made my own dough for the first time, turned out OK, but I should have rolled it thinner and baked it a bit more. I'm hoping to work on my baking skills this year.

Yesterday I bought a 100# propane tank and filled it (23 gals). Should last ~1.5 months for all my cooking and heating needs. I'd like to get a couple more and keep one unused as a backup for emergencies like my recent flood. I'm tired of fussing around with 20# and 30# tanks.

I'm currently testing an old battery pack I bought 5+ years ago (Xantrex xPower 1500). I've neglected this thing pretty badly, burned out the inverter a year ago and haven't touched it since. I charged the batts, hooked up a new inverter, and have been running a desk lamp off it for the last 2 days. It's still chugging along, no noticeable decline in the voltage. If my math is right and the battery isn't too worn out, I figure it'll run that desk lamp for ~96 hours. Nice to know it's still useful if the power goes out for a few days.

AgentR11 wrote:Today I learned that we're a subculture! Woot... I think.

Subculture of Americans prepare...

Sweet, I'll be scheduling a tattooing session tomorrow to celebrate our acceptance in mainstream culture. I'm thinking a bust of Malthus on my neck :lol:

Hilarious that they refer to one of Rawles' books as the "prepper's bible." Pffff.

And "uncivilization"? I've been reading "prepper" sites for nearly a decade and have never heard that one.
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Sun 22 Jan 2012, 07:24:05

Loki wrote:Made mozzarella today from raw milk I get locally, turned out really good, made this recipe a few times and it's always turned out well. Used some of it to make pizza. Made my own dough for the first time, turned out OK, but I should have rolled it thinner and baked it a bit more. I'm hoping to work on my baking skills this year.

Just made the best ciabatta ever today x2 froze one.
As good as the best one I have ever bought.

For pizza allow the dough to sit in the fridge covered and rolled in olive oil for 24hours and then pull it out an hour or so before you need to use it (here its an hour as room temperature is mid to high 20'sC)
The flavour difference is amazing.
Get a stone or a large terracotta tile from a tile shop .

For crusty bread I have an old pan full of volcanic rocks sitting in the bottom of the oven when I put the bread in I pour cold water on the rocks.(rocks are from the beach ex Krakatoa )
Steam makes crust.
My sour dough starter has kicked in its full of bubbles and smells like pineapple juice.
I will make a few loaves next week as I still tweak my recipe ( I was a little too wet on the first attempt will kick back by 20 mil.)
Result was still good just a little too sloppy and hard to shape as an amateur.
I get my lame, dough blade and bowl scraper this week (Ebay) so fancy cuts will also be tried.
I want to perfect a consistent sour dough loaf/baguette to go with my ciabatta,I also make a sour dough rye fruit bread.
Then it s cheese learning time followed by sausages hams and salami
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Re: Today I made / bought / learnt (for a post oil world) 4

Unread postby PeakOiler » Sun 22 Jan 2012, 08:24:46

mmmmm. Breads...

I miss eating breads. At least in the quantities I once did.

List of Foods For Diabetics to Avoid:
http://ezinearticles.com/?Detailed-List-Of-Foods-For-Diabetics-To-Avoid&id=4985125

List Of Foods For Diabetics TO Avoid (Cereals)
White bread
White polished rice
Spaghetti
Pasta
Macaroni
Muffin
Bagel


Note what's at the top of the cereal list.

I hate diabetes. :(
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