gardening (201)

The Shelter Blog (theshelterblog.com) is Alive!

Rick Gordon has built it and we’ve been tinkering with it for a few months, and finally it feels ready to go. Whereas my blog is all over the place, The Shelter Blog will focus on homes, building, carpentry, gardening, farming, foraging, fishing, homesteading and the home arts. Check it out here:

https://www.theshelterblog.com

Note: it’s theshelterblog.com, not shelterblog.com. You need the article the.

I’m really excited by this. It’s as important — maybe in the long run more so — than one of our books. We have no competition here, since we have feedback from our 40 years publishing books on the subject of shelter. Plus we can share brand-new incoming photos and stories rather than wait years to get same into a book. It’ll be complimentary to our books.

We guarantee at least one new post per day, hope to get multiple posts daily as we get rolling.

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Urban Farming Yields Fresh Foods, Land Reuse

“In backyards and on once-barren city lots, local growers produce crops and livestock.

…”There’s been tremendous growth in the number of urban farms in cities dealing with an excess of land and not enough people living [there],’ said Anne Palmer of the Center for a Livable Future at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, and in ‘any city where land is somewhat undervalued.’

That’s one reason Baltimore and Detroit are hot spots. But beekeepers and community gardens are also proliferating in upscale neighborhoods, where there are long waiting lists of foodies and locavores for garden plots.

   Madison, Wisconsin, which last year issued 197 poultry permits, has already issued 178 for this year (with the year half over).…”

Click here.

From Anonymous

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Building a $300 underground greenhouse for year-round gardening

“Growers in colder climates often utilize various approaches to extend the growing season or to give their crops a boost, whether it’s coldframes, hoop houses or greenhouses.

   Greenhouses are usually glazed structures, but are typically expensive to construct and heat throughout the winter. A much more affordable and effective alternative to glass greenhouses is the walipini (an Aymara Indian word for a “place of warmth”), also known as an underground or pit greenhouse. First developed over 20 years ago for the cold mountainous regions of South America, this method allows growers to maintain a productive garden year-round, even in the coldest of climates.…”

On Treehugger, click here.

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Family of 4 in 350 Sq. Ft. House on Homestead in Missouri

“Four of us co-exist in a space that is just under 350 square feet, on our 10-acre homestead in Northeast Missouri. Moving onto raw land, we began construction on our home in late February 2013, and moved into an unfinished, but warm and insulated structure in late October. While we have dreams of someday building a timber framed straw bale home, the reality of our situation was that we needed an immediate dwelling. A tiny house fit our needs and our sensibilities.…”

Click here.

Sent us by David Wills

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Chicken Coop In the Spring

I know I’ve said this before, but it’s really paid off to build a tight, rat-and other critter-proof chicken coop plus yard. Billy Cummings did the honors here: concrete floor for their nesting room and feed room, aviary wire on the sides and top of the yard; wire down into the ground a foot or so at bottom edges of yard for digging critters like skunks or raccoons. The yard works so well we don’t even bother closing the little door to their nesting room at night. I probably built five funky chicken coops over the years before this one.

   The bantam hens work really well for us; the Golden Seabrights are not only (in my opinion) the most beautiful of chickens, inquisitive, perky, and friendly, but they lay surprisingly well. Once you have your own fresh eggs, you can’t go back to store-bought.

  The sod roof is doing well after the late rains.

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