Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Well we are busy gathering the seeds for next years garden. We have so far saved dill, coriander, scarlet runner beans, some white pole bean, dragon tongue beans, 4 kinds of tomato and seeds from our Red Russian kale.

More posts this weekend.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Late summer insect plague

I get these insects every year. I think they are some sort of cucumber beetle but not sure which one.

This year they seem to be more prolific and more voracious. I am sure if I could let my chickens free range a bit more they would be less of a problem. I am also thinking about growing no curcubits for a year but that would be pretty extreme and besides they seem to be willing to eat anything.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Siding and my crystal ball.

Well we are just about complete with all our siding upgrades. We have significantly upgraded the weather tightness of our house by adding sheathing under all our siding. We also upgraded some of the insulation on the south side of the house as well. This combined with the work done for us by TCSP earlier this summer really has us excited about our energy bills this winter. I am kind of amazed that I am saying that.
Around here we believe in a coming energy crunch. I am sure that at some point soon oil will be less available at anything near the prices we have gotten used to. The truth is that on a pure energy per dollar basis it looks like we will be unlikely to see anything else come along that is even remotely close to oil.
So what to do? First and foremost we as individuals need to cut our demand while we still have the resources to invest in the changes necessary. If we are still overly dependent on oil when it begins to get scarce most of us will be too busy looking for extra shifts to make energy upgrades around the home front. If we wait untill it is painfull to continue we will have missed our opportunity to make a significant change in our fortunes. Like in personal finance the time to start saving is before you need it. Once you are up against the wall it is too late to look for places to cut back. Also like in personal finnance reducing your investments made during a time of plenty will pay you back many times when things get tight. So my advice to my readers is simple, find ways to cut back on your energy usage now before you have to.


Friday, September 4, 2009

A glut of plums.

We decided today that it was time to gather in our harvest of plums. We had quite a few of them. There were a few that were damaged by insects so we gave those to the chickens.

My wife did most of the heavy lifting in making this sauce. I was more of an adviser. First she cut the plums in half and put them in a saucepan with just a pit of sugar.

After a bit of stewing and breaking them up with a wooden spoon it looked like the following.

That was looking pretty good but once you have made tomato sauce using a food mill you start to look for other things to put into it as well.

The finnal sauce ended up glossy and smooth. We left it mostly unsweetened for use in sauces and possibly sorbet. I am thinking of making a batch of barbecue sauce with some of it.

After all that we still had all these plums left over for fresh eating and cooking with.