Trace Oswald

master pollinator
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since Sep 20, 2018
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Recent posts by Trace Oswald

I find Greta far too angry to listen to.  She seems so miserable all the time.  What a terrible way to go through your young life.
I've always been told that the layer around the drain pipe should be sand, and you should make the extra effort to ensure that the sand is down tightly around the pipe.  The sand supports it from being crushed or punctured, whereas rock applies uneven pressures and can puncture or crush the pipe as it is filled in.
21 hours ago

John Weiland wrote:

Kathleen Sanderson wrote: Our concern here with the furnace in the basement and the woodstove on the main floor is that no amount of warmth on the main floor would keep the basement pipes from freezing if the furnace was out.  



I don't think you would have to worry.  It may be worth the experiment just to see.  At my lady's former house, we turned off all heat the the basement for four days just to see how cold it would get.  It was well below zero outside.  The basement never got below 50 degrees.

1 day ago

Tereza Okava wrote:In my experience it's a lot easier to adapt to a hot climate than to a cold one  



I wonder if that is a genetic thing, or personality based, or ?  For me it is exactly the opposite.  I moved to a very hot climate and it took me years to acclimate.  I moved to Wisconsin where it is bitter cold, and the first year I dressed like I was in the arctic  After that first winter, I was fine.  Now I wear a long sleeve t-shirt and a sweatshirt in any temperature down to 30 degrees or so unless it is damp or windy.  We have temperatures below -20F nearly every winter and sometimes much colder than that.  The cold never bothers me until it hits those extremes.

For me, if you are cold, you can always just dress warmer.  If you are hot, you can only take off so many clothes.  
2 days ago
As William said, builditsolar.com has a lot of info on this.  This page Earth temperatures gives the earth temperatures for the US.  It also explains seasonal temperature changes for depths less than 30 feet, where the temperature remains nearly constant.
2 days ago
My lady told me "I'm getting rid of you as soon as you can't pick up heavy things."
I'm always confused by using mushrooms to remove contaminants from soil, or in this case, bales.  If you use mushrooms to remove toxins, common consensus seems to be that the mushrooms should not be eaten.  To me, that means they are bringing the toxins into themselves.  If that is the case, what do you do with the mushrooms?  If you leave them to decay back into the soil, it seems they would release the toxins back into it.  If you remove the mushrooms to somewhere else, didn't you just move the toxins at that location?  Or maybe I just don't understand how it works and the mushrooms actually transform the toxins into something else.
1 week ago

Conrad Farmer wrote:We had similar situation - old coop was in bad shape, drafty and we lost chickens due to build up of moisture in the winter so were looking for a new coop

Found the 1920s Woods Fresh Air Poultry book online

Used pallets to build the frame on store-bought skids and purchased lumber for roof - used cast off (free) windows for the clerestory. 8 x 12 (Woods design is based on golden ratio 1.6 - so basically a square main area - in our case 8x8, with fresh air "porch", in our case 4' - so not exactly golden but darn close). Baffle board will be installed on rear rafters today to further seal against drafts as the temps will decrease the next few weeks and snow continues to accumulate toward our average of 200"+ :)



That's the same type of coop I am building for my new place.  I'm building mine 8x16, but it will look much like yours.

I live in a very cold area and when I first got chickens, I was terribly concerned about the cold, so I insulated the coop and kept it locked up tight on cold nights (and days if it was very cold).  I lost a number of chickens to respiratory illness due to lack of ventilation.  The coop was never dry enough, and I could sometimes smell ammonia.  I greatly increased the ventilation in later years.  I'm convinced now that having a very dry, well ventilated coop is by far the biggest concern with keeping chickens healthy, no matter the temperature.  We hit -40F two winters ago for two nights in a row and my chickens were fine.  I get les frostbite now than I did when the chickens were in a tight, insulated coop that was much warmed, but damper, than my current setup.  The new coop will be deep enough at 16' that no cold winds will be able to enter, but the open front will ensure great ventilation year round.  It should keep the coop very dry, and without drafts.
1 week ago
I'm very glad to hear you came through it without long term damage, and that your fear has lessened.  Being afraid is never pleasant.  I'm glad you're doing well.
1 week ago

Rebecca Norman wrote:

What is your experience of pro's and cons of wood shavings, sawdust, or autumn leaves?



I use wood shavings most often and they work great.  I haven't used sawdust, but my concern would be dust.  I tried using leaves one year and hated them.  They mat together and make a layer that is almost impervious to any kind of moisture and they don't seem to absorb anything.  I consider that a failed experiment.

You mentioned sand.  I have read about people that used sand for bedding and loved it.  I'll try to find some articles.  It may be that sand is your answer since it is readily available, and, I'm guessing, free.
1 week ago