stubbed toes and mud pies

flowerbug

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Thank you ~ I have gotten in contact and will receive newsletter ```
i spent a few minutes in google just now looking for their changed web site and am dismayed by the stuff i'm seeing if i look at just The Society of St. John with regards to some other organization which i've never heard of before and problems with child abuse/sexual stuff. what a mess. i hope they got it resolved and fixed now.

unfortunately that happens too much. my own experiences with two particular people in the organization i've referenced by the link (which are not most of what you will see if googling society of st john) well, there was no hanky panky goin on there. i have no idea of the behavior of the rest of them or what has been going on since i've been away. i hope they are keeping things under control. i personally could not take certain vows and refrained from doing so. but i like a hermits' life. simplicity and devotion always appealed to me.
 

digitS'

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I did a bit of composting-in-place, as I refer to it.

The garden beds in the backyard tend to receive generous amounts of organic material. They are handy and, additionally, two beds have been covered with plastic film by each spring equinox and so have a much longer growing season than elsewhere in the gardens. (The decay of organic material must be nearly 100% each year where the growing season is very long, I imagine.)

Yes, many, many earthworms at almost any depth that I care to dig. They are part of the team: me and those who benefit from our garden produce, the garden plants, and life in the pedosphere. Hey. I just learned that word! Seems that a pedestrian gardener should have known pedosphere all along ...

:) Steve
 

flowerbug

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I did a bit of composting-in-place, as I refer to it.

The garden beds in the backyard tend to receive generous amounts of organic material. They are handy and, additionally, two beds have been covered with plastic film by each spring equinox and so have a much longer growing season than elsewhere in the gardens. (The decay of organic material must be nearly 100% each year where the growing season is very long, I imagine.)

Yes, many, many earthworms at almost any depth that I care to dig. They are part of the team: me and those who benefit from our garden produce, the garden plants, and life in the pedosphere. Hey. I just learned that word! Seems that a pedestrian gardener should have known pedosphere all along ...

:) Steve
yes, in the warmer climates with enough moisture it is pretty tough to get higher soil carbon because the decomposers/fungi are doing their job continually. this is why the forests store all of their nutrients in the canopy/wood and the soils underneath are so poor. unless the soil is a manufactured soil with a large degree of char it tends to not hold nutrients. in the Amazon there are large areas of terra preta that were made at one time hundreds to thousands of years ago and it still remains an excellent soil - yes, they do have people who go find it and mine it to resell it. but this rapid decomposition is why slash and burn agriculture is so damaging to jungles. once the soil is exposed, it may support crops for a few seasons but then it is abandoned and the people move on until it gets re-overgrown and they can slash and burn it again, but in the seasons it is exposed the very little topsoil there is often washed away. unless you are lucky enough to be on a flatter spot that holds topsoil better...

comnpare that to the soils if a less tropical grassland that gets enough moisture. the soil carbon there goes pretty deep and so do the roots of the grasses. still a tropical forest will have many more tons of carbon captured in the trees and plants above the ground than any grassland will have in the roots and grasses combined. that is why those tropical forests in SA are so important. they can soak up and hold a lot more carbon than what we can grow here in more temperate regions.
 

flowerbug

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yesterday, perhaps, just perhaps, was the last visit from the roofing people, i hope.

we had one small leak this past summer (after many years of trying to get the leaks fixed) and i sent the roofing guy a note right away (he doesn't live far from here so it has worked out that he could stop by on the way coming home from work) but he'd not been able to get back... so as summer came to an end and fall moved in i sent him a few notes to get him back before the winter got here. he said he didn't forget us, but was often on the way home and forgot to stop in.

anyways, with him back i could at last have him check the area where the small leak was and then take down the large stepping stones we had left up there just in case we needed to put a tarp back up.

with all the rains we've had this summer and fall, including really hard storms there have been no other leaks so i'm am more hopeful that we've finally gotten this resolved or are very close. before removing the stepping stones i had him take pictures of where all of them were in case we do get a leak again as at least then we'd have more clues about where it might be.

then he found a few nails that were pushing up and took care of those and checked the rest of the roof while he was here.

i'm crossing everything i can cross hoping this is really it. really really it. at least for a few years...

Mom was trying to be sceptical but i told her, hey you've not gotten dripped on (one leak was right over her bed) in a long time so relax... [edit, if you go back further in this thread you'll see where she was freaking out and interfering in the process and wanting to remove the chimney cap and redoing the roof entirely - all of that vs. just getting the people to listen to me and doing what i asked of them - using some brains and a few tubes of caulk]

i'm just hoping with the colder weather returning that any shrinkage will not open up any more leaks any place up there.
 
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digitS'

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Do you have one of those "complex" roofs on the house?

I really like the looks but they didn't seem to be at all common until there were computers and architects who knew how to use them and off-site outfits that built trusses and hauled them to the building sites.

After that, we began seeing homes that would make the House of Seven Gables link look like child's play.

Steve
 

flowerbug

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Do you have one of those "complex" roofs on the house?

I really like the looks but they didn't seem to be at all common until there were computers and architects who knew how to use them and off-site outfits that built trusses and hauled them to the building sites.

After that, we began seeing homes that would make the House of Seven Gables link look like child's play.

Steve
not nearly as bad as that, but apparently hard enough that the first roofing contractor couldn't do it right (they do several hundred roofs a season so i'm not sure why they messed ours up so much other than they seemed to rush it at the end of the day as it was getting dark and i wasn't happy about that and i told the owner of the company about it when i talked to him). the flashing job around the chimney was horrible and eventually we got someone else because the original contractor would not do anything else. short of dragging them into court... for as little money involved it would not have been worth it. i'm contemplating sending them a letter eventually once i'm sure we've got it all taken care of...

the main part of the house is a hexagon shaped roof with a central fireplace coming up through. two facets off the hexagon shape are flat roof rubber type which was not replaced or changed yet.

the original roofer (first 15yrs) was the ex-step-dad who never built a roof that didn't leak. guys who did the roof in 2011 had to replace a lot of decking. i think a part of their problem with what they did and why we've had leaks (besides the above mentioned rush at the end and the poor flashing job) was that the roof is not steeply pitched so they should have used more protection at the seams along the facets (hips i think they called them).

anyways, we just hope it is done.

here are some pics of layout/house/inside -n- out

 

digitS'

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Complex.

Enjoyed looking at your pictures again, 'bug :).

@misfitmorgan should see what you have done and I'm a little humored by "hardscaping" definitions ;). Now, trying to not take responsibility with all that garden work there as evidence doesn't look possible.

Steve
 

flowerbug

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Complex.

Enjoyed looking at your pictures again, 'bug :).

@misfitmorgan should see what you have done and I'm a little humored by "hardscaping" definitions ;). Now, trying to not take responsibility with all that garden work there as evidence doesn't look possible.

Steve
lol, yeah @digitS' but i was not here when so much of this was put into place. i had zero input into the site layout or any garden designs for the first 8yrs or so. by the time i got here most of what you see in terms of hardscape was done. what has been done since then i have advised on (and largely been ignored :) ). sometimes i manage to get some basic engineering done or can finagle some permaculture principles, but that is even a challenge.

really about 80% of what i do now is fix the poor site layout or design decisions or messes that have happened since then. any chance i can combine small gardens, lose an edge or take out a pathway i'm doing it...


you might laugh at all of those bricks (we just put in about 600 more not too long ago and my brother says he'll deliver a truckload of them for us this next year sometime when he finishes a job where they will be used and then they would have been discarded) but they are not permanent in place or as hard to move as a lot of the other things here.

by now i am also well versed in being able to scrape up and screen gravel to clean it or to move it. :)

yes, i do hate hardscape. notice in some of those tasks i am making gardens bigger and so can grow more food? that's my goal. i failed though in the current pallet ditch project. i really wanted to reclaim the space along there for gardening but Mom won't let me. win some lose some. :)
 

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note @digitS' a few lb brick is much easier to move than a 40-60lb rock. :)

i have been stuck inside too much lately. it is ok as it does let me get some indoor things done (like smashing my foot into the closet door jam) and cooking up some beans, reading, consolidating bean drying box tops, etc.

what i am not getting done is packing off some plants and seeds to a person who requested them. it is next on the list, but i haven't gotten out into the mud to do that. i might have a chance today to at least get some plants lifted... we'll see.
 
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