Tuapte Semper Ingredere Via

Community, People, Localization – a return to a human scale

Humor

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I’ve always thought of humor as a state of mind.  The ability to laugh at oneself as the adventure unfolds.

 

All the book learning I have had seems  to matter little when dealing with the complexity of producing food on the land in a sustainable and resilient way.   Apparently the deer, chipmunks, jack rabbits etc figure I’m there to feed and amuse them.   Out again the other day chasing deer off in flip flops at 6 am.  The jack rabbits now that they have seen me run, just snigger a bit and eat away until I’m a few feet away then leisure move off to some other tasty bits I have planted for them.

 

Success I think comes from watching the animals and working for them.  I mean with them.   Although it may seem I do work for them. Country life is a Three Stooges festival.  Nyuk, nyuk.

 

This fellow – barred owl – came by in mid February and took down a big jack rabbit.  Spent the day in the sun (-20) and nibbled away on his prey.

Sitting on the jack rabbit

Sitting on the jack rabbit

Having a lunch break

Having a lunch break

Devoured the whole thing, fur and all.   Thinking I can hire him for year around control of the animals.  Maybe he can be Hootie and I can be the Blowfish.   If he could keep the chipmunks and rabbits from eating stuff I would worship him/she as a god

 

Have about half an acre towards the first tree line of really good, well drained soil.   Nitrogen fixing black locust are to the north and apple trees to the north east.   The plum trees I will put to the west leaving the area in front of the trees for perennial vegetables, berry and nut trees, herbs, medicinal plants and ones that attract good insects (honey bees) and birds.  Picture below shows a bit of it.  The funny looking things on the ground are old carpets I use for killing off the grass under it to bring new areas under cultivation.

Woodlands garden waiting for the gazebo

Woodlands garden waiting for the gazebo. Green cedars will get taken out shortly

 

Some shots below of stuff growing or to grow – maybe

Mint. Contained now by sod but its suppose to spread where it can

Mint. Contained now by sod but its suppose to spread where it can

Jerusalem Artichoke plot.l Should give about 50 pounds of tubers a year

Jerusalem Artichoke plot.l Should give about 50 pounds of tubers a year

High Bush Cranberry. Grows to 12 feet. edible berry.  50 of them

High Bush Cranberry. Grows to 12 feet. edible berry. 50 of them

20 of these young Hazelnuts growing. Get about 5-10 pounds per year per plant

20 of these young Hazelnuts growing. Get about 5-10 pounds per year per plant

Comfrey. Medicinal. Leaves for mulch and fertilizer.  Harvest 3x a year. 20 so about 250 pounds of fertilizer.

Comfrey. Medicinal. Leaves for mulch and fertilizer. Harvest 3x a year. 20 so about 250 pounds of fertilizer.

 

And a pileated wood pecker for those who made it to the end

Pileated woodpeck

Pileated woodpecker

Written by dcveale13

May 19, 2015 at 12:52 am

Posted in Uncategorized

May 2015

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Written by dcveale13

May 12, 2015 at 10:19 pm

Posted in Cameron Veale, Planting

Watch a Tree grow

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I gave awa my tv’s  and was planning on only having Internet at the house but haven’t gotten around to that.   And to be honest its been like shedding an addiction.   I don’t check every 30 minutes for the latest news, email or research something and usually turn off the cell phone.  Instead I read, stop and think or go and look at how much a new tree has grown in a few weeks.  (Surprisingly so sometimes!)  Most of us don’t seem to be able to relax or when you stop to think about it, realize how odd it is to sit down for a drink with friends and everyone is checking their cell phones.   We seem only connected to the immediacy of the moment – not the scale of a week, month , year or decade.  Maybe that’s one of the reasons we discount things like possible climate change or our changing economic status.

Easy dinner

Easy dinner

Flying off with the peanut

Flying off with the peanut

We also seem to have disconnected ourselves from what we are certainly part of.  Nature.   Most of what we have is created from the resources of the earth and energy we extract – which is just stored sunlight encompassed in ancient biomass.   We define ourselves by what we make or build then strive to separate ourselves from nature and keep it in a public park or in the country.  The very thing that keeps us alive as a species we watch  from our car or house windows as if its somehow separate.

Eating the suet

Eating the suet

Lately we seem to value more what Honey BooBoo is doing than turning off the tv, computer, gaming box, cell phone and seeing what is out there.  Go somewhere and listen to the silence.  Hear the birds or owls or coyotes singing.  See the stars.  That’s the reality of what we evolved in and exist in, not the artificial reality most of us live in today.  Go watch a tree grow.

Screw you ! Its mine

Screw you ! Its mine

Written by dcveale13

October 28, 2014 at 12:57 am

Mead – Wine from Honey

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Hoping next spring to get the first livestock which will be a hive of bees.   I like honey but I really like a drink before dinner.  Mead is, in all likelihood, the oldest alcoholic beverage known to mankind. Before agricultural techniques were developed, humans were traditionally hunters and gatherers. After gathering honey from the hive, the natural yeast and high moisture content would cause the honey to ferment, producing mead.
The term “honeymoon” has been associated with drinking mead during the month long celebration following a wedding in pagan times. In addition to the health giving properties of honey; mead was thought by the Romans to lengthen life and posses unique healing qualities. The ancient Nordic people considered the drinking of mead as a most important aspect of daily life.
A single honey bee colony can produce more than 100 pounds of extra honey and this is what is harvested by the beekeeper. One can make a wine, or a beer like drink.   And variations in between.
And once I figure out how to make toast I will use the honey.
Finished all the tiling but the bathroom.  Working on the shed in between rain storms.  Growing pile of wood to split for next winter shortly.  Wood stove already to light up a fire.
Also got the effing boat out of  Tor0nto and to the the property in latish August on a transport truck.   Bit iffy having the truck able to back in off the road without going into the ditch but its there now for the winter – or the first person who offers $10 bucks and a stick of gum.
Perch for the birds

Perch for the birds

 

 

Written by dcveale13

September 22, 2014 at 11:52 pm

Why I do what I do

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Some have asked why build a house on an old pasture in the country, why a  “green” house , heat with wood and went off grid.  Well I guess its because I think too much.
Thinking up new ideas

Thinking or sleeping

I have always been interested in self organizing complex adaptive systems such as physics and civilizations.  Learning why a system starts to wobble and then comes apart has always piqued my curiosity.
When I came back to Canada in 2004 I became further interested in other systems particularily the economy energy and climate.  As I could see oscillations had started to occur in these systems.   In one a year of good crop harvests would be followed by a bad year and cycles of a few years of good or bad seem to falling apart.  The economy was and is swinging between euphoria in the markets with day to day transactions replaced with debt rather than earnings.  Companies created profits from accounting practises as their earnings from sales shrink.
 Lots of fresh air
Insurance companies for example have started to project by 2050 will be out of business due to the rising costs of natural disasters.   Toss in the need to increase profits from increasingly risky market activity and they will likely be forced to further change their business models.    Western governments have also legislated that banks can go into depositors accounts to remove money if they require re capitalization.
Oscillations such as the price of gasoline increasing 300 odd per cent since 2000 and similar increases for products such as milk or eggs are indicative of change coming.
As they pass a threshold they move into a period of chaotic movement where outcomes are impossible to predict.   This continues until a new normal is obtained in the system.    Easter Island or Roman civilizations being examples or a hurricane or the life of a star.
All of which lead me to start thinking of managing risk at a personal level.   How to avoid being swiped by failures in some of these components such as the electrical grid or pension plans.   All of which lead me to build a house which pretty much maintains itself, eliminate water costs, electrical and pretty much all running costs.  It also provides me with the chance to take advantage of opportunities as they appear or so I hope as things change.  Some for the better and some for the worse.

 

What to do next

What to do next

Written by dcveale13

August 25, 2014 at 10:18 am

Stalked by Chipmunks

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House is staying warm in this temperature drop. Thinking it may be another long cold winter.  At least that seems to be the early forecast.  Plenty of wood but want to make sure its closer to the house this year.   Stupidly left it away from the house and had to dig through snow drifts to get at it in March.
Enjoy splitting the wood.   Hard work but I can see something accomplished at the end of it plus its a great way of getting rid of frustrations.  Just about ready for the start of colder weather now.
First load moved to the house

First load moved to the house

Seems to have been a good growing season for trees.  Poplars coming back, black locust that survived the 2012 drought are shooting up.  Tthe cold nights are less good for the annual vegetables though.  That’s when most of the growing is done.  Although the zuchhini , tomatoes, carrots etc producing a fair bit.
Lots of bird species around.  Last evening their were humming birds, couple different types of sparrows, gold finches, purple finches and thrushes about.
Gold Finch eating up the sunflower seeds

Gold Finch eating up the sunflower seeds

Think its a purple finch

Think its a purple finch

Darn chipmunks seem to be on heroin.   Stepped out on the porch and two of them leapt at me from beside the door screeching at me.  I jumped 4 feet up and smacked my head on the porch roof.   Chipmunks ran away chuckling the little swine.
Thinking up ways to get me

Thinking up ways to get me

Getting ready to leap at me!

Getting ready to leap at me!

Flower bulbs from walmart were a waste.   Get what you pay for.   Probably made of plastic from china.   Wild flower beds doing real well plus once they get going its year after year.  Giant thistle has popped in one of them.   Some sort of metaphor for my life but can’t figure out what !
Thistle amongst the flowers

Thistle amongst the flowers

Will need another bookshelf soon.  Keep getting handed cookbooks, mysteries and other books from people downsizing their place. Think I need to figure out a way to put the cook books somewhere near the kitchen.   Only downside of the strawbale walls is finding the studs behind the clay plaster for hanging stuff.
Stuff done so far this year:
New areas for raspberries, asparagus, comfrey and squash
Planted 20 hazelnut trees
Planted 50 Norway Spruce and 50 Highbush Cranberry trees
Completed the deck under the porch
Experimented with flower beds
Tiled bedrooms and living area except bathroom and pantry to finish off
Before winter
Shed
Outdoor oven
Move firewood and splitting for next year
Did not get done
Root cellar
Pond

Written by dcveale13

August 14, 2014 at 8:23 pm

Summer Fun

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Tiling last week and mostly done.   Kind of fun to do but had to move furniture from here to there and back to get it done.  Books were the hardest to move.

Moved to dump truck loads of gravel over two days.  That was not fun.   With just a shovel it took a while.  Split about half a cord of wood by hand.  Will get the chain saw out shortly to get the next half cord ready for splitting.

At least now the house is semi presentable.   Now back to outdoor stuff and Toronto to do some boat work next week.

 

Kitchen before grouting

Kitchen before grouting

Moving stuff back in

Moving stuff back in

Had four of these green herons around the week I was tiling

Had four of these green herons around the week I was tiling

IMAG0106

Lot easier to clean with tiles on the floor than concrete

Lot easier to clean with tiles on the floor than concrete

Written by dcveale13

July 31, 2014 at 5:16 pm

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