The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

A three-person-and-one-dog project

Cutting firewood

How many warm bodies does it take for optimal efficiency on clearing day?  I was going to say three for the first phase (Mark felling, me and B.J. clearing brush), then one for the second phase (B.J. sawing logs into firewood). 

Dog dragging firewood

But pictorial evidence suggests otherwise.  Clearly phase two also benefits from a dog dragging away logs to chew on them.  If we were able to train Lucy to carry firewood into the pile instead of away from it, we'd use about 5% less wood over the course of each year.

Our chicken waterer makes your homestead chores more efficient --- more more cleaning out filthy waterers.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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We used to have a dog who would do the same thing, except he wouldn't just chew the logs--he'd shred them! We'd end up with little piles of wood chips all over the yard. Of course, we couldn't get him to 'play beaver' where we needed mulch, either. Fortunately his teeth got duller as he got older, so it would take him longer to get through a log. The question is, is a 5% loss rate worth the entertainment value? :-)
Comment by Jake Tue Mar 26 00:38:25 2013

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