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Ayatollahgondola 08-25-2011 04:44 PM

Back To Basics
I know I've mentioned this before, but times are tough for me as far as income goes. No work, means no income. No work also means I have time on my hands, and with no funds to go anywhere, I'm at the mercy of home projects. so I took out our above ground pool, and am building the fair maiden a garden plot in its' place.
Had to remove some square footage of insulated steel panels which were under the pool, and then bring in rich loam dirt from the old swampland that downtown sac is built on to supplement the hardpan we have out here. Fortunately I found a guy digging out under his old victorian era home to build a basement. Lots of free, dark soil rich in nutrients, and very easily worked. Well, it was hard work to carry it back here. Now to build a fence to keep that shoe chewing up, bone burying, plant eating dog of ours out of there.

Speaking of gardening: A few months ago, our lemon tree grew one lemon that had some unusual side growth on one side. I couldn't help but notice that it resembled a vagina :o. After I showed it to my wife, she recognized the resemblence immediately also, so it wasn't just my male characterisitcs seeing what I wanted to see. I was going to post a picture of it here, but thought it less than newsworthy after a bit. But now another coincidental event has me wondering if our fruit trees aren't sending us some sort of messages. Today the orange tree had this hanging from its' braches, and mind you, the lemon and the orange tree are right next to one another

So gardening is not the only home chore you can do for free. Since June, I have obtained , cut, carried, split, and stacked 4 cords of hardwood firewood. I answered ads on Craigslist, but you have to be prepared to work hard for it. Last year we ran short, and ended up having a long winter (we burned wood up until mid june), so this year I prepared for another long one, and for the year following too. We have Oak, Walnut, and Eucalyptus. The most recent being the latter, one guy was cutting 30 trees down. Between the wood and the dirt, I'm stretching my aging body's limits I think. 4 cords of wood takes up quite a bit of space I came to find out. I had to stack it in little spaces here and there all over the yard, and as the picture shows, I still have about 3/4 cord to split and stack yet. I have so much wood now, I was thinking about putting a small chimnea in the treehouse and renting it out to a college student

Ayatollahgondola 08-25-2011 04:48 PM

Ayatollahgondola 01-16-2012 12:49 PM

Here's a Back-To-Basics update:

Radishes already grown and eaten, but up and coming is lots of lettuce, broccoli, carrots, and garlic

Ayatollahgondola 01-16-2012 12:59 PM

Forgot to update you on the Jimmy Durante Orange:

also, have already burned through a whole cord of our best oak firewood. We've been burning pretty much non-stop through november, december, and january. I got another half cord of wood that was cut up, but needed to be split. It's oak too, with a little more walnut. Picked that up under the "free" section of craigslist. The Walnut that I got in June is burning ok; at least the limb wood is anyway. But the tree trunk which was around 80 years old was as hard as rock in the center, and still tightly holding moisture. It coals up pretty well, but it burns a little smoky. The Gum tree I cut in late august is not at all burnable yet. Next year for that one, or maybe for campfire wood this summer smells like independence when burned.:)

Patriotic Army Mom 01-16-2012 04:08 PM

Wow, it all looks good!

Illini Sky 01-16-2012 11:18 PM

After reading what all you've been doing these past several months, I'm worn out!!!

Love the Jimmy Durante orange! :)

ilbegone 01-19-2012 11:20 AM

Nice job stacking the wood, AG.

Got an idea, will PM you.

Ayatollahgondola 02-08-2012 12:25 PM

Garden update:

we've already eaten all the Radishes, and have made at least two large salads from the lettuce, The carrots are slow, but coming up, and lo and behold, we have Broccoli crowns a' formin'. Broccoli and carrots should be on the table in two weeks or so. Also, Garlic is about 5 inches high.

we've also made quite a dent in our firewood. we've burned about a cord and a half, and it's really starting to show in our diminishing stacks. Actually, some stacks are gone completely. We haven't really stopped burning for weeks. The fire goes out, but there are always glowing coals beneath the ash that allow for it to start back up in the evening by just stacking some small chips on the top and let it sit there for 20 minutes or so. at night, I close the air intake down quite a bit, and throw on a couple big logs, and the house is always warm in the morning.

wetibbe 02-14-2012 04:11 AM

Pellets & basket
Back in October 2011, 2 days before Halloween we had a huge snow storm. The leaves were still on the trees. There was massive damage. My property has 80 trees. I chain sawed limbs and branches for three days, saved the big ones and drug the rest to curb side for Town pickup. My power was off for three days.

I have a fireplace. I researched wood pellets. There are wood pellet furnaces and there are fireplace baskets. The furnaces are a major installation and an expense well North of $3,000.

I ordered the pellet basket.

It fit's into my fireplace grill. And I bought bags of pellets from Lowe's, less than $4 per bag.

Hard wood, oak, firewood gets a little expensive from the Guy's who cut, split, haul and sell it.

Ayatollahgondola 05-21-2012 09:23 PM

Garden Update
So here's a few recent pics of our spring crops:

We've eaten about 4 rows of lettuce already. There was lots of that. Also almost gone is the broccoli. But we just planted squash, tomatoes, more radishes, corn, carrots, and a few herbs.

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