First anniversary……

14 09 2016

One year ago today, Richard and I arrived at the Fanny Farm to take permanent possession of our new project…… where has the time gone? Even though you can see where I’ve been (or at least where our money‘s been..!), it still feels like I’ve achieved less than I had planned.

I’m probably just fretting because it so much feels like we are all running out of time, especially after reading Nicole’s articles on negative interest rates.

20160911_12493420160908_130624This week, with the assistance of my young French wwoofer, a new polytunnel has been built (still needs a door and a vent), 200m² of new ground has been tilled, composted, and planted with green manure (which has started germinating, yeah….. hope it rains a bit more tonight); and just this afternoon, after watching a permaculture orchard movie in Cygnet promoted by the Huon Producers’ Network last week, we have made twenty odd Codling Moth traps that the Canadian owner of the orchard in the film swears by.

20160914_171419They are made of recycled milk bottles, drilled with a 20mm hole in two sides to allow the moths to enter the traps after being attracted by the molasses and water mixture poured therein….

Will it work?  One can only hope so. If it works in Canada, there’s no reason why it can’t work in Tasmania.

Look hard enough, and you will see my Geeveston Fannies are trying hard to form flower buds, so hopefully we have beaten the moths to it!

The little critters almost wiped out my crop of Pink Ladies (though, amazingly, hardly touched the Fannies, go figure..

cydia-pomonella

Codling Moth

The other good news is that my neighbour John came over with his laptop and worked out that the reason I could not reset my Victron inverter’s settings by autodetecting the port it was plugged into was that I had to tell it which port to use….! So much for technology supposed to make things easy.

Now the inverter is reset to operate at the Nickel Iron batteries’ voltage settings, my power station is operational, and I will soon move my freezer out of the shed and into the container to reduce my power bills and load the batteries, which they need to build up capacity, I am told….

I’ll soon have to buy a pump to get water out of my dam so I can do some irrigating, and it will all be solar powered. There is progress every day, it’s just it doesn’t really feel like it to me…… watch this space, I guess.

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10 responses

14 09 2016
abundantdescent

There are bound to be times we feel this way, Mike. And there will also be times we feel like we cannot but be impressed at how easily or quickly the transformation has taken place. Nicole’s article is pretty scary. So was the first presentation I saw by her, back in 2011, I think. And here we are, five years later. We do what we can do…At least we have an inkling that trouble is on the way. At least we are working toward greater resilience. I, personally, think you are doing an awesome job. And…Spring is on the way! 🙂

15 09 2016
mikestasse

Thanks for the encouragement……. there’s so much to do here, I often feel overwhelmed..!

15 09 2016
johnnyb

Any chance you can share the recipe for the molasses mixture used in the coddling moth traps? There are a few on the web, but I’d like to hear which one you are using. Thanks.

And in terms of your progress, this may be irrelevant if everything goes pear shaped, but you are probably better prepared than 99.999% of us (including me)!

15 09 2016
mikestasse

It’s just 50/50 molasses/water……. I used hot water, because it’s cold enough here that the molasses are almost impossible to pour..!

15 09 2016
Dr Bob Rich

Congrats, Mike. Things ALWAYS go slower than expected. Years ago, when I was writing my Earth Garden Building Book, I developed Rich’s Law of owner-building: the first time it takes 5 times as long and costs twice as much.
🙂
Bob

15 09 2016
mikestasse

So Bob, how long does it take second time around…? 🙂

16 09 2016
Mark

4 times would be my guess. Rain & wind etc will put you behind every time, where a contractor will ahead regardless.

Much easier and faster to pay someone to do it, but that’s not the idea is it?
Besides, when you do it yourself, when something doesn’t work right, you know what was done and can correct the problem.

Keep at, you are further ahead than I am.

17 09 2016
mikestasse

This time around, I am definitely NOT doing my own concreting…….!

15 09 2016
Denice

As an observer Mike there seems to be a great deal of progress. I enjoy seeing the Fanny Farm take shape as we can’t move at the moment due to aged parents needing care. I do what I can and worry a lot. Was thinking bugs would be less of a problem in Tassie but I guess there are just different bugs!

15 09 2016
Kathleen Turner

You seem to be making good progress but everything always takes much longer than you expect. I agree, it does feel like time is running out. Then again, I felt like that this time last year so we shall see. Oh for a crystal ball.

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