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Monthly Archives: January 2012

The garden zones move north

U.S. Department of Agriculture The U.S. Department of Agriculture has released a new version of the “Plant Hardiness Zone Map.” As you might expect, a warming climate has pushed the zones north. It’s the first time the zones map has been revised since 1990. It’s interesting to note that the Department of Agriculture isn’t saying […]

Giving away our trees to corporate chain saws

Atlanta Journal Right-wing state legislatures all over the country are bending over backwards to sell out taxpayers and give greedy corporations anything they want. The Raleigh News & Observer has a story this morning about new regulations rammed through the North Carolina General Assembly that allow billboard owners to cut down more state-owned trees. The […]

Nosy neighbors

It’s surprising how much wildlife drama there is right outside the doors and windows of the abbey. This little scamp from the woods frequently plays on the deck and climbs the chimney, but today he put on quite a little show-off act while Ken and I stood by the deck door and took pictures. The […]

Ruth takes a dirt bath

If everyone could get to know a chicken, we wouldn’t put up with the brutal way chickens are treated in the industrial agriculture system. Chickens have very distinct personalities. They’re curious, and not as dumb as we sometimes think. And they love life. Here Ruth takes a nice, long, luxurious dirt bath.

Everyone loves compost

I accidentally left one of the gates open, and Patience wasted no time sneaking over from the orchard to the garden to check out the new compost that Ken was bringing in.

Tote tanks

I finally found a tote tank to store water for the garden’s irrigation system. The irrigation system is a work in progress, and I’ll have photos of that when the project is done. Tote tanks are much less expensive than the water tanks sold by agricultural suppliers. When you buy one, you’re also recycling it. […]

Compost, compost, compost

I wish I had thought to keep a running total of the amount of compost that has been used at the abbey. Tons, certainly. I buy it by the dump truck load. This is a leaf compost, made from leaves picked up as a city service in nearby cities. It’s not an ideal compost, because […]

Elderly animals

Elderly Animals: Photographs by Isa Leshko from Mark & Angela Walley on Vimeo.

The real cause of food inflation

Commodities traders at the Chicago Board of Trade If you asked a few Americans about the causes of food inflation, what answers would you get? Ask a right-winger, or a so-called libertarian, or anyone else who lives in an ideological fantasy world, and you’ll be told that it’s the government’s fault, that’s it’s all about […]

Fall garden, R.I.P.

Last week, we had a night when the low temperature was 18F. That froze the remaining greens in the garden. So it was time to turn the garden at last. Ken and his girlfriend Sarah, who is visiting this week, did the work. It’s a shame that I wasn’t able to plant a cover crop […]