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I think Roland is on the right track with melting the end. I'd also consider adding a hog ring to the very end (a heavy wire ring that that you pinch around the end as a clamp, kind of like what you see closing the end of mesh net bags of produce, or frozen poultry), then doing the melting. Then, even if the trimming broke down the melted nylon end, the wire would hold it in place. You could also weave a piece of baling wire through the last inch or so, then wrap it around the rope several times and melt the end. Have you considered trying a piece of braided metal wire? Or adding a wire rope clip to the end of the nylon rope (might be too heavy and would create undue engine wear)?
Comment by Rich Arnold Mon Sep 29 20:38:00 2014

Try melting the free end of the nylon string together before you put it in the trimmer. That should stop it from coming apart.

Adhesives probably won't work well because nylon doesn't adhere well. In composites manufacturing nylon films are often used as vacuum or autoclave bagging films because they don't stick to most kinds of resins.

To make adhesives stick to nylon, the nylon has to be given a flame or corona treatment. And the effects of those treatments generally don't last long.

Comment by Roland_Smith Mon Sep 29 18:30:39 2014
Great idea! Better "industrial grade." Maybe try knotting the end to prevent fraying?
Comment by doc Mon Sep 29 18:01:33 2014
When in forward my 1986 clubcar golf cart makes a wineing noise n doesn*t want to move reverse seems to run fine
Comment by Anonymous Mon Sep 29 17:03:51 2014
I like it. It caught my attention when I loaded the blog and struck me as pleasing to the eye.
Comment by Emma Mon Sep 29 12:46:57 2014

I was researching how to get a tractor out of mud, and found that lime is often used on construction sites:

Comment by Cliff Mon Sep 29 09:20:50 2014

Hi Mark and Anna,

I was reading the end of a blog on marksdailyapple about teeth.

The mom who wrote in said her milk got much more orange when she ate dark green stuff. She thought it was due to the large amount of chlorophyl?

Given that one test for beta-carotene and vitamin A is also colormetric, I wonder what is actually in the orange - red egg yolks? Some folks have written about Brix testing egg whites and seen variations from 12 to 16. Maybe if a few of us test our eggs and write in with our data a pattern will emerge?

Has anyone done any measurements or do they have other experiences maybe health related to share?


Comment by John Mon Sep 29 08:58:45 2014

is there any way to fill in the muddy section of road with big rocks from the creek, or hillsides? my road was a swamp.i hauled hundreds,it seemed like,loads of rocks in utility cart,behind 4 wheeler to make it passable

Comment by ron Sun Sep 28 06:49:38 2014

Thanks for the update on the pears! I hope you get some good fruit from them next year!

Thanks also for your kind words about my blog!

Comment by Jake Sat Sep 27 23:19:22 2014
You should be able to get that out by winching it using trees as anchors. We did it all the time growing up. Just run a chain (or strap) from the tree to the truck and use a come along winch. Unless you have an electric winch, then you're cooking with grease!
Comment by Bobby Nations Sat Sep 27 21:32:31 2014

Years ago I spent some time in Italy. I always wondered why they referred to the yolk as the "red" of the egg instead of the yellow. It became clear when I started raising free-range hens.

I think the white hens (Leghorn, Poulon) lay paler eggs, making less pigment in general, than the others on the same diet.

Comment by doc Fri Sep 26 07:39:18 2014

Nayan, maybe you could try pears--I've heard that they can be much easier in places where apples have a hard time. At my parents' house are several apple trees that have a hard time producing apples good for hand eating (although they make lots that are good for the cider press), but one pear tree that produces bushels of amazing dark red fruits every year (as long as there's no late frosts).

Along the same lines--Anna, I think you've been doing some experimenting with pears on your homestead, but I couldn't find any recent updates in the archives. Any luck with your disease-resistant rootstocks, etc.?

Comment by Jake Fri Sep 26 01:02:34 2014
The issue I discovered with SWD is that unlike the average fruit fly that lays eggs in ripe fruit, the SWD lays in unripe fruit. So by the time the raspberries ripen, the maggots are alive and well inside the berry. I'm sure we ate quite a number before we realized this, and that didn't seem to do us any harm. However, once we realized, it was more than we mentally wanted to handle.
Comment by Daniel Thu Sep 25 10:17:28 2014
Okay, so I'm assuming that by "pastured" you mean you let them run free in the pasture and then have some means of getting them back to the henhouse so critters don't get them? If so, how do you get them to stay in your yard (okay you've got boo-koh acres for them to run around in, whereas I've only got 2 and neighbors nearby). If you're "tractoring" the hens, wouldn't you also be "pasturing" them since you're moving the tractor from one place to another?
Comment by Nayan Thu Sep 25 10:08:32 2014

Emily --- One of our readers in Florida grows them, using the tops of storebought pineapples. He gave us one to try, but I was too lazy to take it in for the winter. If you're willing to spend two years babying a potted plant, though, it's supposed to be possible....

Daniel --- I have a high tolerance for pests that don't really do much damage other than cosmetics. We do have fruit flies on our raspberries (although I haven't tried to ID them to species), but I just ignore them. It does help to always pick the fruit every day, and to toss any fruits that get away from you to the chickens rather than letting them rot on the bush.

Comment by anna Wed Sep 24 19:22:55 2014
Have you had any issues with pests in your raspberries? If so, I'd like to hear how you deal with them, specifically spotted wing drosophilia. My berries were completely infested with them this year. I ended up cutting off all the berries and giving them to the chickens in an attempt to - hopefully - reduce the population next year. Or maybe you cover this in your naturally pest free book?
Comment by Daniel Wed Sep 24 10:26:53 2014
Funny you should ask. I had a craving for fresh pineapple, and woke up Sunday morning and had to go right out to the store to get it. Too bad we can't get THAT to grow around here! LOL
Comment by Emily from Bristol Wed Sep 24 08:46:21 2014
With regard to the suggestion of spraying water on trees during potential late freezes, that's what the citrus growers in Florida do. Not sure how that works but apparently it does.
Comment by Nayan Tue Sep 23 20:07:06 2014
My neighbor gets up in the middle of the night on late, hard freezes and sprays water over his fruit trees. He claims that this prevents the frost from nipping them. I have never tried this for myself, or verified his claims.
Comment by Faith T Tue Sep 23 12:04:23 2014
Maybe it would be worth an investment in some large tarps? Or even old sheets from a thrift shop?
Comment by Terry Tue Sep 23 09:35:22 2014
Any possibility of putting some type of temporary plastic "greenhouse" over the trees in the spring? I sometimes throw an old clear shower curtain over some of my beds that have tender veggies in them in case of frost. Have a problem here with apple cedar rust due to all the cedar trees in the County. Unfortunately, the research I've done says the only way to combat that is to remove all those trees within 1/2 mile of my property and I don't think my neighbors would be very happy if I showed up with a chainsaw. So bought apples it is. On a good note, the Apple Festival in Erwin is the first weekend in October and I should be able to get some good apples from local growers there.
Comment by Nayan Tue Sep 23 09:16:57 2014

Hi folks,

I'm planning to move to Mongolia next year, and although I grew up with a woodstove as our only source of heat, I really know nothing about them. I'm looking for a small, not super super heavy (if that's possible) wood stove that doesn't have to be fed firewood every half an hour like the Mongolian ones (just maybe 1/4" steel welded, not insulated). I'd like to not have to get up every couple of hours in the night to put ore logs on.

Also need to be able to cook on it - would be used in either a yurt, or a small cabin. The winters are long and cold there, with temps down to -40, so I need something that meets these needs and so I don't go through as much wood there, and will keep me warm. I'll actually use it all year round since I will have to cook on it. I head something about cast iron stoves cracking if you try to boil frozen water on them, so maybe steel is better?

I appreciate any advice! And oh... I can't afford a really expensive one.

Comment by Cheri Tue Sep 23 02:19:41 2014
Thank you!!!! That is extremely helpful and I appreciate the link as well. Seems our First Frost date is pretty much the same as yours.
Comment by Nayan Tue Sep 23 00:00:00 2014
Nayan --- This post should help you nail down fall planting dates for any climate, while the spreadsheet linked at the bottom of this post gives specifics for our own garden. But there's nothing quite like taking notes on your own garden and planting earlier or later the next year if your first impulse doesn't quite work out. Good luck!
Comment by anna Mon Sep 22 18:00:36 2014
Lynn Anne --- "Chicago hardy" is the variety. You can read about other types of cold hardy figs here.
Comment by anna Mon Sep 22 17:54:42 2014

To the comments of wheher It appears likely you are correct with the observations about the article The author clearly seems not to have the facts straight Nor the correct conclusions As energy prices soar,pollutants continue to foul air and water Aquaponics will be the answer to sustainable fish stocks. Fresh fish from the farm for the family of the future!

Comment by Curt Williams Mon Sep 22 17:06:44 2014
According to my latest in the foraging category books (Foraged Flavor, Wong & Leroux, 2012) galinsoga has a mild taste, similar to that of peas and can mix well with lambsquarters. Seeing as how it is invasive you can pick all you want :-)
Comment by Lillias Mon Sep 22 16:04:55 2014
That first comment made me laugh, as it's exactly how I feel about driving alone. (Even though I now have a daily commute, driving to the local BIG TOWN is cringe inducing nevertheless.)
Comment by Faith T Mon Sep 22 10:30:07 2014
When do plant (from seed I presume?) broccoli and other fall veggies in your area? I planted snap peas in middle of August but they're not producing anything except foilage. Am frustrated. What about cabbage and lettuce? I figure maybe if I use your dates I'll be able to produce something... ::crosses fingers and hopes::
Comment by Nayan Mon Sep 22 08:47:23 2014
It was so great you could come! ! I'm glad Mark didn't suffer without you. :)
Comment by Emily in Bristol Mon Sep 22 08:38:29 2014
What variety is this tree? I love figs, but never thought I could grow them in my area. Thx.
Comment by Lynn Anne Mon Sep 22 07:44:47 2014

To be honest, I think you may need to do a little more research on your facts of aquaponics. First off, Australia isn't the origin of aquaponics, as its roots are deeply tied into Egyptian history, as well as in Mayan culture. Sure, the Australians took to the idea quickly, and have provided some of the advances in the modern framework, but by no means are they the inventors.

Secondly, most aquaponists who have thought critically, and evaluated the qualities of various protein and food sources realize very quickly that a food source founded on kelp or algae, or plant products will realize nutritional qualities in their aquaculture equal to and greater than wild stocks of fish.

Finally, as the energy industry continues to make breakthroughs in efficiency, and aquaponic entreprenuers continue to find ways to limit, if not eliminate their external energy costs by using creativity and ingenuity to drive their success the science behind the system has become the main focus.

The only negative behind aquaponics I can see is that smart people and the uninformed tend to run headlong into aquaponics without allowing the time to research how complex it actually is, even though the idea is fairly simple.

Finally, in all of the systems I have seen from hobbyists to commercial scale farms, the pump system consists of one pump from the low point in the system back up to the high elevation point. No one pumps from fish tank to grow bed, to fish tank o grow bed, and running a single pump using alternative power supply is extremely efficient.

While these are only a few of my disagreements with your evaluation of aquaponics, I will provide a few of my ideas behind why aquaponics is an extremely more effective system than traditional soil based agriculture.

  1. The major agriculture born pathogens E. coli and Salmonella can not grow in an aquaponics system.
  2. The water consumption in soil based agriculture is extremely wastefull, and is draining the Western United States towards major hydrocatastrophe, while aquaponics water consumption is limited to water absorption for growth, and a small amount lost to evaporation.
  3. The labor costs associated with pest control, planting, crop rotation, soil turnover, harvest, and preparation for shipment and market are fractionally lower in aquaponics as the system requires a much lower footprint of square footage, as well as a lower need to control environmental concerns(herbivorous organisms, bacterial infestations, fungal disease, viral disease, insect pests, and many others.

Soil based agriculture will become an antique of the produce market as long as aquaponics and energy industry continue to evolve at their current rate.

Comment by Wheher Sun Sep 21 21:11:12 2014
In Tanzania they put it in a juice mixture with mangoes and avocado. It gives a slight tangy taste and a delightful distinctive smell.
Comment by Anonymous Sat Sep 20 23:25:35 2014
I purchased black rocks from the craft area and only the bottom of a clay pot to place the rocks great for birds and bees.
Comment by Maureen Sat Sep 20 20:18:43 2014

Hi Anna,

Tales of your beekeeping are my favorite part of Walden Effect. My husband and I just uncorked a bottle of meade; our valediction to summer. After almost two years, it is pleasant. This bee season was again challenging in new and various ways. I'll send you an email with details.

Comment by Eva Sat Sep 20 18:05:38 2014
Next season, why not plant some dent corn (field corn, the kind grown for agriculture) and let it mature and dry on the stalks. You could grow some Indian corn too for some variety and color.
Comment by Eric Rylander Sat Sep 20 13:41:24 2014
Does your area have any type of Beekeeper association? We have one here in Washington Co., TN: Maybe you can contact them for info.
Comment by Nayan Sat Sep 20 08:54:36 2014

For several years, I have been feeding weed seed's screened from cleaning oats and wheat. The number of different types of seeds is off the chart. I obtain this from a man who raises seed oat and wheat, this generates quite a supply. The cost is .10 cents a pound. I raise chickens for eggs, the nice large brown eggs, with a dark golden yoke. Customer satisfaction is very good, resulting in a under supply of eggs. I add about a 15 percent laying mash, which keeps the girls on the job. Bird health is as good or better the commercial feeds. Chicken hawks and eagles look healthy also. (wink)

Comment by Ken Ulrich Sat Sep 20 05:54:11 2014
Brian is impressed.
Comment by Heather Fri Sep 19 22:02:10 2014
Me, too! I've been nervouscited all week. LOL!
Comment by Emily from Bristol Fri Sep 19 14:23:25 2014