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How many batteries do I need for my solar panels?

Refrigerator root cellar, step 1...dig

Fighting tomato blight with pennies

Electric Club Car trouble

Automatic chicken door

Aug 2015

A year ago this week:

Peeing on the compost pile

Garlic processing 2015

How much hay do goats need for the winter?

Universal plug polarity damage

Aug 2014

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Goat barn bedding

Last year, I estimated we'd need 27 bales of hay to get our two semi-dwarf goats through the winter. We actually socked away 36 bales, though, just to be safe.

Cute goatsHow much did our goats actually eat? It's a little hard to say because they spoiled some bales when they broke into the storage area (and I later used those spoiled bales for bedding). But I'm guessing they actually consumed somewhere between 18 and 20 bales.

We still have quite a few musty hay bales from last year in the main barn (outside goat reach), and I'm trying to decide whether those bales are worth feeding. I suspect a normal goat would eat them despite a bit of mildew from the summer damp...but our princesses will likely get fresh bales instead while I use last year's hay in the garden.

(And, yes, before you ask --- that bale in the top photo is straw for bedding instead of hay for dining. Which isn't to say Artemesia didn't nose around in search of seed heads before settling back into her newly cleaned barn.)

Posted Wed Aug 24 07:08:33 2016 Tags:
Cutting up peppers

Cleaning butternut squashThe harvest continues, a quart of frozen peppers here and a bushel of curing butternuts there.

Don't worry, Artemesia --- there are many more butternuts still in the garden for your winter dinners!

Posted Tue Aug 23 07:12:39 2016 Tags:
Back when I was using the experimental paint roller extension boom pole.

The new semester at ETSU starts tomorrow.

I'm having a lot of fun and learning tons about the process of film making.

To keep things balanced I'll be skipping my Tuesday post to make time for film.

The above scene is from an upcoming Slasher Spoof titled "Snapped" that we recently finished production work on.

Posted Mon Aug 22 15:42:45 2016 Tags:
Kale seedlings

Oat seedlingsThe seasons are subtly shifting. I've only got a couple weeks left for oat planting, so I'll be pulling out lots of used-up garden beds and seeding the winter cover crop this week.

Meanwhile, fall vegetables are starting to gain a foothold elsewhere in the garden. Peas and carrots and kale in one area, buckwheat preparing the way for garlic in another. That, plus a long row of lettuce, is all I have left to plant in the edible line in 2016.

Posted Mon Aug 22 07:02:43 2016 Tags:
High density apple training proves itself.

High density apple training has produced some impressive results in only 4 years.

Posted Sun Aug 21 14:38:31 2016 Tags:
Chick brooder

The revamped brooder has been doing its job admirably.

Snake eating a chick

Which means no more of this...

Foraging chicks

...and plenty of this.

In fact, the only flaw of the new design is that the flashing on the solid wall tends to heat the inside up when in direct sunlight. Luckily, the double doors allow a cross breeze during the day which takes the sting off the oven effect.

Posted Sun Aug 21 07:32:46 2016 Tags:
mark 330 tons
Scoop with blue skies and clouds.

The gravel store keeps a record of every load I've purchased.

Over the last 10 years we've bought and hauled 330 tons.

Some of that was a huge dump truck load of crush and run on our main driveway. I will never get crush and run again. It seemed to fade into the ground rather quickly. I should've made sure we got 3-4 inch rock for that application.

Posted Sat Aug 20 15:24:57 2016 Tags:
Honeybee gathering corn pollen

Double-decker goatsThe sweet-corn ecosystem is quite complex on our farm.

Honeybees steal the pollen fated for tassels (although never so much that the air doesn't do its job of pollination).

We eat the ears. Then the leaves make great rainy-day goat fodder.

Finally, the stalks often end up as the sop-up-the-effluent layer at the bottom of a new composting-toilet bin. No part of the plant is wasted!

Posted Sat Aug 20 07:03:49 2016 Tags:
mark Rut stump
A stump right in the middle of a rut.

This stump is hard to see but was easy to level out thanks to the Oregon battery powered chainsaw.

Posted Fri Aug 19 15:37:11 2016 Tags:
Summer harvest

At this time of year, I sometimes feel like I need to create a horn of plenty for my daily harvest to spill out of.

Posted Fri Aug 19 06:35:17 2016 Tags:

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