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Thekla McDaniels

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since Aug 23, 2011
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Thekla McDaniels currently moderates these forums:
Thekla has been studying soil life and the process of soil development since 1965, also, the then new idea that fossil fuels were a limited resource.  She currently farms 2 1/2 acres of what used to be fine grained blowing desert sand but is now 4 inch deep soil, and counting!
Grand Valley of Colorado's Western Slope
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Recent posts by Thekla McDaniels

I find this topic interesting and important and complex

It seems the discussion has progressed to a recognition that pharmaceuticals are a diverse group, and solutions will need to be specific to the substance in question.

Most microbes are not pathogenic, so an approach that tries to kill all microbes is not likely to eradicate target organisms, as evidenced by resistance to antibiotics and pesticides- rather they  encourage the development of resistant organisms, and are more likely to kill more beneficials.

Plenty of compounds go through animals unchanged, as evidenced by ivermectin animal wormer killing the dung beetles and soil micro organisms after passing through the goat, horse, dog, what have you.

There are radioactive drugs that pass through the human in their radio active state, for which some countries require special collection and processing methods… not the United States, to my knowledge.

I also, like one of the early posters to this thread believe our best bet is mycoremediation, because an important fungal superpower is the ability to develop metabolic pathways and or exudates to disassemble novel substances.  IMO this is our only hope.  Though I don’t know if they can ever do anything about radioactivity or emf.

Rather than buying filters, I think biofilms could be a productive strategy to experiment with... and, as they have fungal components, include the superpower I just mentioned.

Unfortunately I don’t have more specific suggestions or knowledge of specific strategies.

And if industry and government had consulted me, I would have recommended a cradle to grave policy, that would require that what ever a corporate entity creates, that entity must assume responsibility for the disposal of, once its “useful” or productive life has been completed.  Everything from drugs to toasters and beyond 😊
4 days ago

I might have been mistaking false Virginia creeper for Virginia creeper for 50+ years!  I  remember glabrous leaves and tapered tendril ends, usually growing on fences and other plants, not on buildings.

Everything’s covered in snow at this point, but I will be checking on them as soon as I can

Thanks for the link above.😊
1 week ago
Unfortunately, no, I can’t say how it was done.  Retrofit insulation for a bath tub might  be a topic for a whole thread!  

I chose that option when I ordered the tub for the old house I was remodeling-recycling.

It’s an acrylic tub from signature hardware, a company I have no reservations recommending, having done business with them several times.

This tub was on sale, or I probably wouldn’t have bought it, because it’s a little too long for me.  Something I never even thought would be possible!

The tub is double walled, and for an extra charge, they added the insulation into the cavity between the two walls before shipping.  

I do feel ambivalent about what material they might have used, but it can’t off gas into the air I breathe, and I tell myself the extended use of the hot water offsets the environmental costs of the (most likely toxic gick) insulation.  And then there’s the health and well-being benefit to my body, and I leave the water in the tub until it’s cold, so I have kept the bathroom warm as well.

Maybe it’s “rationalization”, but I figure I have stacked functions of both the water and the energy used to heat it.

1 week ago
I too, have a long deep soaking tub.  Not only do I enjoy soaking my muscles after exertion, but, I have the thing insulated.  It stays hot for a long time.  It’s between an hour and a half and two hours before I feel it cool enough I want to get out.

I sometimes have to wait for the water to cool down , because I use the bath for hyperthermic therapy.  As what is achieved through sauna.  Search heat shock proteins for more information.

If I am still really hot when I get out, there’s the chance of getting dizzy, (orthostatic hypotension).  I think that’s the only time I am at risk for falls, but I must say I am very aware of slips and falls when climbing in and out.  I will keep the suggestions of prior posts in mind.

I have an optional grey water option in the basement below my tub, so that I can drain the tub into the garden.

I believe that the size of the area I can drain to can easily absorb and utilize the Epsom salts I frequently use

1 week ago
Catalpa and mulberry trees are routinely pollarded in municipal landscaping.

I don’t know what the wood is like on those trees, but pollarding is coppicing higher up the trunk isn’t it?

It makes me think they would coppice well, and that a person planning a coppice grove could also pollard, and if the opportunity presents itself, I might readily blur the two techniques

For example I am a great fan of strategically placed trellised vines for winter sun and summer shade (gotta use the vines that die to the ground in winter).

Mightn’t it be possible to have well placed pollarded and-or coppiced trees provide the same function?  It sounds to me like a fun thing to try!

Maybe throw some espalied fruit trees into the guild!
1 week ago
A few years back I was growing broom corn- a type of sorghum I think.  I saved some seed, but the extra I fed to the chickens.  Seems like the grain in commercial chicken scratch (which I don’t buy ) includes sorghum.

I wonder how I would be able to tell if the chickens were not utilizing the amaranth they ate while foraging.
71, been single since age 40.  Farmed most of those years in one form or another.

Tools, yes, learning to ask for help , yes.  Taking more frequent breaks, yes.  Job hazard analysis BEFORE doing the risky thing, yes

I have a monthly appointment with a physical therapist who does dry needling, (I prefer acupuncture but it’s hard to find a talented practitioner, and the PT is very talented)

Two important things:  I do range of motion activities using a gyrotonic pulley tower.  This is an arcane system that is designed to increase circulation in all the joints, stimulate fluid exchange in all the joints, and allow - stimulate the minor muscles to work with the major muscles.

How I look at it, often the physical afflictions we experience are “bad habits”.  They started out as protective adaptations after an injury that the body never quit.  Like a dog who limps, holding his paw up because he has a sticker in his foot, but continues to favor the foot though the sticker has been removed.

The pulley tower and physical therapist prevent my body from developing “bad habits” (for example poor alignment and poor posture), and help me rectify old ones.  Doing good so far!

I can’t remember the second one 😂
2 weeks ago
Well, I am going to veer off topic a little, as for attachments, how does this sound?

There’s a very common piece of hardware for hanging gates; an L shaped bolt, the long leg is threaded, the short leg smooth.  The threaded end gets screwed into a predrilled hole.  

The gate is lifted onto the shorter pin side…

But you wouldn’t need to hang a gate on it.  The threaded piece could be the anchor for what ever fencing a person wanted to use.  From time to time the pin could be backed out a turn or two.

2 weeks ago
I think there’s a lot of potential for coppicing “fruit trees”, apple peach pear plum apricot…. those guys and all their cousins.

Dense wood with high BTU.  

I don’t know how long a rotation, but that would likely depend in part on when - in the plant’s annual cycle and life cycle - you harvested.  I had an ancient apricot orchard and though I never did it, I used to consider coppicing one or two of the trees.  I thought if I cut the top off when the tree was winter dormant, then the tree would have stored underground enough sap to put the mature tree into blossom and then leaf.  When spring came, I thought that much life would come charging up out of the ground, and there would be ?hundreds? of pounds of wood as water sprout… you might need to thin them the first year, using the thinnings for kindling or various projects.  A first year shoot can easily be fatter than my finger and 5 feet long.  

This is based on the practice I developed to prune for size in the summer, and shape in the winter, because if I cut too much off the tree when it was dormant, there were too many witches brooms and water sprouts.

You wouldn’t get fruit, of course.

Many sucker from the rootstock.  
2 weeks ago

Alexia Allen wrote:

a few rows Skagit Blue (reportedly) perennial wheat, planted April 2021.  So far so good; it stands up to grazing pressure and then can put up seed heads when I move the goats out of there in the spring.  It made some seed heads the first year I planted it. .

Alexia, this is one of the most exciting things I have heard of in a long time!

I’ve just done a few searches for seed, can’t find it for sale.

I am wildly curious to know where I can get some.