Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Happy New Year Subscribers!

     I had some time to burn today and the weather was in a cooperative mood, so why not cut down another couple rows of sunblock (aka trees).  The cleared area isn't so cleared in these photos, but I can only do so much...and I got much done in spite of how it looks!  Hopefully the next trip up will provide me with a couple helpers to collect the cut branches and to stack the log sections that are laying in segments everywhere.  Once they're stacked neatly and the huge burn pile has got more heaped on it...the cutting will be done in this area.  Next up will be clearing the second section of drive path back further into the woods and then nearly clearing an identical area for where we will place our residence.

Jennifer and I have been doing some brainstorming in regards to our farming options.  Here is our dilemma.  We don't like to pull weeds.  We don't like the thought of wild foragers (deer and others) feasting on any/everything we will eventually grow.  We are alarmed by the machinery investments costs necessary to work the soil if we went the way of tilling the ground.  We've got seasonal dampness and water issues that might cause growing issues with seedlings and roots damage.  So what do we stumble upon?  Aquaponics:  the merging of hydroponics and aquaculture.  In a nutshell, fish in a tank, water is pumped with nutrients from their poo, plants absorb the nutrients and in the process clear the water, water returns to the fish tanks.  In a very well maintain and managed system, the plant production in soil-less confined hoop houses is phenomenal compared to traditional gardening.  The plants either float in a bath of nutrient rich water (horizontal), are rooted in clay rocks (horizontal) or are planted vertically in a drip irrigation system and hung in rows while growing a net pot.  With the right species of fish, a well designed system can even grow the plants that will be fed to the fish!  We think we found the solution and a healthy one at that since aquaponics can be done certified organic!  More to come on this in future posts!