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David Wieland

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since Jun 19, 2017
Manotick (Ottawa), Ontario
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Recent posts by David Wieland

roberta mccanse wrote:Or will I eventually need an out house?

Well, the rest of that rich description was chuckle-worthy. ☺ As for backup toilet facilities, two that my wife and I used during our early country living were a trench latrine under a simple poly tent and a (smaller than a port-a-potty) outhouse that used a small plastic garbage can (with a lid) instead of a dug pit. There's no need to dig a big hole for temporary use.
1 week ago

Timothy Markus wrote:
I've got a 1500W 12V inverter that I can power from my car, though I've never had to use it.  I bought it on sale for half off and it's really the cheapest way I know of to be able to run a fridge, freezer, or furnace fan (one at a time).  

I'd recommend testing your setup with each of those powered devices, because 1500W isn't very much. The furnace fan is probably no problem, but there may be a higher starting draw for the cooling devices. My 6500W generator can't handle more than one fridge and a large chest freezer at the same time as the water pump.
1 week ago

Brian Michael wrote:Do you guys know what would cause the locations where it was limbed to "donut" like that?  

It looks like healthy branch collar growth to me. I don't normally see it form such a heavy ring, but basically the tree is scabbing over, "healing" the wound.
2 weeks ago

Marco Banks wrote:
Sweet potatoes and cherry tomatoes might as well he a perennial, the way they continue to volunteer year after year.

Ditto for arugula (I had never heard of the perennial kind mentioned in the original post) and cilantro. It would be a real challenge to get rid of the cilantro, but why would I?
1 month ago
I have a couple of EGO tools, a hedge trimmer and a weed whacker, and like them both. Having more than one cordless tool that uses the same battery is definitely helpful, especially when the batteries are expensive, which EGO's are. I considered adding their chainsaw, but the price turned me off. Instead, I have a 40V Greenworks 16" that does a great job and works very much like my 16" Stihl gas-powered saw -- just a bit slower. I had to replace its oiler after a few years (which was a pain), but it's worked well since then. A brushless motor is definitely desirable in cordless tools, giving more power than a similar sized motor with brushes.

This spring I got a Ryobi ONE+ 12" brushless saw (from Home Depot), partly because it uses the same battery packs as my other ONE+ tools. I don't use it for felling full-size trees, but a sharp chain lets it cut like a champ on small trees and limbing.

By the way, I bought a pair of the larger batteries (4 amp-hour?) on sale last year, and one of them conked out this spring. It was on warranty, and Ryobi quickly sent a replacement. (I opened the bad one for inspection and found one cell looked rusty. I don't think I ever got it wet, so it must have leaked internal fluid.)
1 month ago

Cindy Loos wrote:Very informative. Thank you.
But I DO have a question...
How do you keep squirrels from eating your hazels

Yes, that's the question. I judged that mine were much too big to cage (bird netting wouldn't deter squirrels), so I had to eventually admit defeat. Costco's mixed nuts is my hazelnut source now.
1 month ago

Steve Landau wrote:My filberts took 6 years to finally fruit,   the bush waited until it was 10 ft tall and about 15 ft across before I found a few nuts on it this year.

Hazelnuts 4 years  -  Not until the stalks were about 5 ft tall.

My hazel bushes grew well and got to a similar size as your filberts, but I never saw many nuts. And squirrels seemed to get them all.😟
1 month ago

Lana Weldon wrote:And you also help wildlife by growing hazel:

Yes, my two hazels certainly helped grey squirrels in my neighborhood. They helped themselves to the nuts year after year before they ripened enough to harvest, until I finally gave up and laboriously dug them out and planted fruit trees. I like hazelnuts but never got a chance to sample any from my trees. 😣
1 month ago

Tereza Okava wrote:We have a few sourdough threads, in at least one I described my hooch issues, they have been mostly resolved by refrigerating during all but the coldest part of the year, unless I'm doing serious baking (multiple recipes per day or days in a row) and then keeping it very thick when its not refrigerated.

My experience with sourdough starter is that it's very forgiving. Mine is based on whole wheat and is only a cupful or so that I reserve from the unadulterated batter (for waffles) made with a previous cupful of starter. I typically use it every two weeks, so I refrigerate it between times.
After two weeks, there is some liquid on top, and I simply stir it in before mixing the starter with enough flour and water to give me enough batter for the waffles and the cupful refrigerated as starter for the next batch. The only time I discard a little (including "hooch") is when I've left it more than three weeks.
Perhaps gluten-free starter is finicky. I'm sure it's harder to make a loaf without gluten, and I don't have any experience with that.
3 months ago

Kimbo Baugh wrote: I find that the % of whole grain and length of time the dough ferments factors in. Whole grains will make your sourdough a lot more sour.

I think you pointed to the main factors. I'm a very simple baker, and although I don't bake bread, I've been making whole wheat sourdough waffles for decades.  The batter gets nice and bubbly, but I rarely notice much tang. Granted, my loose recipe does include a half-teaspoonful of baking soda, which would offset some tang while increasing loft. The length of time I let the batter work seems to be the main variant in tang. I also don't understand the obsession with starter recipes. Over the years, my starter has suffered neglect at times, to the point of seeming death, but all I need to do to get a viable starter again is to discard about half of it and add flour and water. Leaving it out for a day or two at room temperature (I normally refrigerate it between weekly or bi-weekly waffle sessions) is all it takes to have a bubbly starter again.

I suspect that making San Francisco-style sourdough bread takes more effort, but basic sourdough baking is undemanding. I've even substituted white flour a couple of times when I was out of whole wheat, and the batter wasn't obviously affected. The next morning I just scooped out the cupful I reserve for starter for the next batch and carried on.
3 months ago