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Generally Recognized As True: May 2009

Friday, May 29, 2009

Rain barrels and mosquitoes... and goldfish, all in or near Georgetown

I was surprised to read in today's Georgetown Independent that the town's rain barrel sale created havoc on town roads due to the incredibly high demand for the at-cost pricing of some rain barrels that the town had set up an event to sell. Apparently, they came stocked with 300 barrels and were sold out within 30 minutes.

That is a very nice thing to hear, though I wonder why there is so much interest. Clearly the town was not expecting it. But you can't water your lawn with a rain barrel and you can't drink the water, so what are the intentions, I wonder? Are vegetable gardens really making that much of a comeback?

On the topic of rain barrels... obviously, mosquitoes are a concern because rain barrels are a body of water that sits still for quite awhile -- until you use some water or it rains and starts to fill up again. You can get closed barrels and install screens, but did you know... that you can put a goldfish in your rain barrel and it will eat mosquito larvae? As long as there's oxygen going in and out of the barrel and you don't completely drain it and run the poor goldfish dry, you can do this, apparently.

In other news... the house next door to me hosts drug dealers and the house across from me has now been condemned. 2 down, 1 to go... maybe the fact that they just busted a $1 million grow-op just outside of town will keep things at bay for awhile. Honestly, I would not be surprised if half the rural area was hosting grow ops. It is happening in BC.

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Sunday, May 10, 2009

Garden update : May 2009

Baby salad greens poking through. Putting these in a barrel, surrounded by gravel and sand seems to be a very good slug deterrent. That's well-suited to salad greens, too, because you cut them early and the others fill in the gaps left behind. So, you don't need a lot of space unless you eat way too much salad.

I've uncovered last year's attempt at soil rehabilitation (sheet mulching) and planted vegetable seeds here. I posted last year around the same time of year when I started that sheet mulching experiment.

I put a number of different tomato varieties here last year (I wrote about it back then) and it's a very good sun trap. This year, I'm going to interleave pole beans and peas. In all of my planting, I try to avoid too much of the same crop in one spot. Just as banks collect money in one spot for bank robbers to steal, putting a crop all in one place seems like it'd just attract more and more pests that like that crop.

New forsythia: one more step toward the evisceration of grass. Mint in the barrel is on the way back.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Crate Designs review: good post-purchase support

I wrote a bit about Crate Designs not too long ago. The furniture I bought from them arrived a couple of weeks ago but was parked in the living room for a week or so because the room it was destined for wasn't ready to receive it.

It's very nice furniture and is of high quality but, unfortunately, when I took the protective plastic that was holding the drawers and glass doors closed on a credenza unit, I noticed a big crack bisecting one of the glass panes. I asked the company about it, thinking I might be able to go and pick up a replacement glass pane from their store or something like that but, to my surprise, they actually came to my house today and installed a new pane!

This company has a lot of things going for it. It makes nice, solid furniture that seems to look better with age, it's made locally, the salespeople know the furniture very well, and they always seem to deliver when they say they will and, in this case, went well beyond my expectations.

So, I think it's worth posting this just so that others know about them. I've had two furniture orders with them now and everything has gone perfectly both times.

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