Waking up on New Year’s Day with the world of long crowing roosters

Now I’m not suggesting these guys for urban situations, but New Year’s Day seems an appropriate moment to survey the world of long crowing roosters. According to poultry expert Gail Damerow, writing in the current issue of Backyard Poultry Magazine, long crowers probably have their origins in Japan and have spread throughout the world through deliberate selection. Here’s a play list for your listening pleasure, consisting of a...

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It’s always been fun to stick it to the Man

The folks from Dough on the Go! were over the other night and reached into a box of slides we found years ago at a thrift store and never looked at. That box turned up these images showing a previous generation enjoying the “water of life” coming out of what appears to be two different home built stills. Homegrown Revolution applauds the DIY spirit (so to speak) and these images seem an appropriate way to begin the dreaded holiday...

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What’s Your Personal Food Policy?

...ference. We all have to eat and we vote with our supermarket dollars. Just as our Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack helps craft our nation’s schizophrenic food policies, I thought the Thanksgiving holiday would be an appropriate moment to define my own personal food policy. But as I started to write down my personal food policy I discovered so many contradictions and exceptions that I just stopped. My own personal food policy, when consi...

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More on our gardening disasters

...egetables I ever planted in our garden was cabbage. I don’t know why I planted cabbage. Now I’d recommend that newbie gardeners in this climate plant start with something a little less risky, a little more climate appropriate, a little less time invested. Like arugula! But back then, I was blissfully ignorant and wanted to plant cabbages in our first proper vegetable bed because storybook gardens always grew cabbages. I’m glad I...

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A Tensegrity Table

Tensegrities are an attractive structure that can be built with rods and string or wire. The term is Buckminster Fuller’s combination of “tension” and “integrity”, though Fuller probably did not invent the concept. Having seen a coffee table that used a tensegrity as a base, I decided to see if I could make a similar table, only out of scavenged materials (scavenging seems appropriate in these crummy economic times!...

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Washing Machine Greywater Resources

...rt Homegrown Evolution. Ludwig’s open source Laundry to Landscape system. 1″ polyethylene tubing–an alternative to PVC pipe. Oasis Biocompatible detergent, the only laundry detergent we can find that’s appropriate for greywater use. It works great and, again, click through the link and we get a little support. A selection of three way diverter valves. Note the 1″ brass model for laundry systems. Use these diverters...

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The Strange World of Artificial Plants

Ikea’s Fejka. On a recent pilgrimage to Ikea, I ended up staring at a large display of fake plants while Mrs. Root Simple found a replacement for our kitten-shredded drapes. Viewed from a distance Ikea’s plastic plants were realistic, though seemingly outside of any known plant genus. I found myself pondering the question of what permacultural context in which these plastic plants would be an appropriate design solution. I couldnR...

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Native Plant Workshop

Vitus californica covering our ugly chain link fence There’s a couple of common misconceptions amongst novice gardeners about native plants: 1. If you use native plants the whole garden has to be natives. In fact, it’s great to mix natives with non-native plants. The natives bring in beneficial wildlife, are hardy and are efficient in terms of water use. Flexibility is key here–go ahead and mix natives with vegetables, fruit...

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Introducing Lora Hall

...e runs a booth with Trisha Mazure every Tuesday from 3 to 8 pm. When we visited her at the market last week Lora had a bunch of interesting plants including purslane, tomatoes, tomatillos as well as a selection of fruit trees appropriate for our warm climate. In the LA area and want some fruit trees for your backyard? Some gardening advice? Contact Lora at [email protected] Lora will be posting as Homegrown Neighbor....

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