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Monthly Archives: April 2010

Black locust

Of all the native species that like to grow here, I think I dislike black locust the most. This is because the young trees sprout everywhere, they grow fast, and they have vicious thorns. The stems are tough, so they’re hard to get rid of. However, in the spring, the locust trees redeem themselves with […]

Spring chickens

I took my camera to the mill today when I went to buy chicken feed, hoping to get a portrait of one of the mill cats. The mill cats were not to be seen, but the spring chickens were still there. This was at the Monitor Roller Mill at Walnut Cove.

What can we learn from small newspapers?

My local newspaper, the Stokes News While big newspapers are foundering and shrinking, small local newspapers are holding their own, or even thriving. Is there a useful economic lesson in this for relocalization? Oceans of ink have been spilled in attempts to analyze why larger newspapers are dying. It boils down to two things: both […]

A candle in the wind, a whisper on the air

Wikipedia I hope the non-nerds will excuse another nerd post. But because of some of the email I get, I know that some of the readers here are nerds… As we contemplate the fact that we are all energy hogs (you do contemplate that fact, don’t you?), I think it’s interesting to remind ourselves just […]

Recovered photos

The motherboard of a 12-year-old computer: somewhere you don’t want to go What if your computer crashed today and couldn’t be restarted? What would you lose? There is no costless way to back up your computer. Probably the easiest and least expensive plan is to periodically burn CDs or data DVDs of files you don’t […]

Can you espy the groundhog?

Sorry for the blur. That happens easily with my camera when the light is low. Solution below. Don’t peek. The groundhogs love to eat my clover. Until a few months ago, I had a family of groundhogs living within 25 feet of my upper porch. That was a little too close for comfort. I was […]

Straw bale gardening

I’ve decided to try straw bale gardening this year. Though my raised beds, filled with compost, have been pretty productive for the past couple of seasons, straw bale gardening seems even less expensive and less hassle. The idea is, you first prepare the bales for 10 or 12 days by keeping them soaked with water […]

Sourdough update

Whole wheat sourdough bread from homemade starter I am a novice at sourdough bread, but I do think I’ve learned that sourdough requires experience. Experience not only for the baker, but also for the sourdough starter. My sourdough starter, which I made from scratch, is now a month old. I first made bread with it […]

First apple blossom

In the fall of 2008, I planted 10 young apple trees and a pear tree. The trees came from Century Farm Orchards. They’re all old Southern varieties of apple trees. Each tree was about 3 feet tall when I planted them. I don’t expect apples for three years or more, but I did have my […]

Whole-house surge protector

I finally have a whole-house surge protector, something I’ve wanted for a long time. It’s possible to buy these things and have an electrician install it, but my electric company offers them for $9.95 a month, with installation, and a warranty, included. The surge protector installs under the meter. It took the technician only a […]