Thekla McDaniels

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since Aug 23, 2011
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

Thanks for a wealth of experience information and opinions.  I knew the community would be a resource!

I am going to go find the hoop house thread, see what they are saying.  Maybe I should have posted there but I didn't think of it.
3 months ago
Well, it is a mystery to ponder for now.  I think maybe the air movement outside kept those tomatoes warm, but the stagnant air inside the hoop was colder.

Other elements of the puzzle: 6000 feet elevation, at the bottom of a small valley with a side drainage coming down off the 10,000 feet mesa to the south.  It was a clear night.  The night before, there was some frost damage on some of the squash plants, no frost damage on the tomatoes and peppers, though the temperature went down to 29 or 30.

The next night after they had constructed the high tunnel, they covered the peppers and squash with row covers,and they too sustained significant frost damage.

I guess I will ask some of the people around here with high tunnels if they heat them, and for their experiences and opinions.  
3 months ago
great information!  I thought the warm earth under the tomatoes this time of year would sustain the temperature...

But what can you say about the fact that the temperature did not go down to freezing outside the tunnel... with unprotected tomatoes not getting frosted when the ones in the tunnel did.
3 months ago
I just heard back from my friend, official temp was 34, thermometer outside her door was 37 this morning.

More remarkable, her uncovered tomatoes did not freeze or suffer any frost damage!

It is quite a puzzle to me!
3 months ago
I am not sure exactly how cold, but certainly it was not colder than 30 degrees.
3 months ago
Hi Folks,
Yesterday I worked next to a couple of women putting a high tunnel over existing tomato plants.  Well established plants, loaded with fruit, as a good tomato plant is this time of year.

The framework is cattle panels curved over, anchored on the ends, the panels joined side to side.  The whole thing is 30feet long and 10 feet wide, and 7 feet high at the top of the arc.

They covered it with heavy duty visquine, the kind designed for greenhouses.  On the lower 3 feet on one side, row cover was used.

Ends were covered in visquine anchored with straw bales.

Nowhere was the plastic resting on the tomato plants

The next morning, the tomatoes showed extensive "frost" damage.  Disappointing, even heartbreaking for my 70+ year old friend

What can anyone suggest about this situation?
3 months ago
Ah, I have not many women who share my build!!!  I wore underwires for years, and they did not really fit, but I had to have something!  34
ribcage, I wore a 38DDD because that came the closest.  
Then a shop that catered to mastectomy patients and made custom bras helped me find a 34 G
About 5 years ago I quit the underwires.

Now I order a stretchy bra that is cotton covered lycra in size 34FGH.  It is made by leading lady, and they put it on sale frequently.  It is also sold by Bare Necessities.  They charge more than LL.

I have been very comfortable wearing this, and when they begin to let go, I sometimes wear two, one on top of the other... gives me quite a lift.  

I realize previous posters have mentioned cancer risks,but at 69, and wearing a bra since 12years old, I have not had any cancer of any kind except from sun exposure, but not melanoma, (the scary one).  

I think it's a good idea to assess cancer risks individually.  Most Permies are clean living with much lower than average exposures to carcinogens, and yet we have unique family histories to concern us.  But those risks that the medical professionals worry about are from numbers and actuarial tables, and I am an individual, not a number, and .... doing good so far!

7 months ago
My question is about insulating an industrial style steel barn on the inside with straw bales.  8000 feet elevation mostly arid, but with a warmer interior,and a real winter, it seems the moisture would condense on the steel, next to the straw.  

I can think of a couple other options, one is leave a space between the existing steel exterior when I stack the bales in...  the other one would be to make a clay slurry and dip loose straw in then pack it in a form.

Any ideas or suggestions?  Thanks!
7 months ago
looking for ideas for hedgerow plants that deer won't eat.  freezing winter, lots of sun

8 months ago
no one has mentioned getost, not even me.  You cook the water out of the whey.  You have to stir it a lot, and then when it is kind of thick in consistency, to get rid of the graininess, beat or whip it.  It has a sweet flavor, I guess you are concentrated the sugars...

"Deborah Niemann" includes the recipe and method in her book:  Raising Goats Naturally.

Currently, I am feeding the bottle baby goats whey.
9 months ago