Three months ago, I introduced my shirt-making project in a blog post. I had just planted 1/2 lb of Avian flax seeds in a field (it covered 200 ft², at 24 seeds/ft in 7-in rows) at that time. This last weekend I harvest the flax and thought it would be a good point to update … More Flax Shirt Update — 2 Hours for Plant and Harvest
It is summer and even though it has been unusually rainy here, I’ve been trying to time my washing to the weather so I can get my laundry hung outside. I know this may be a luxury for me because I work from home, and for some, shoehorning laundry into a busy weekend isn’t always … More Use Your Clothesline: A Radical Act?
The institute’s tagline is “housing, clothing, and feeding ourselves in a post-fossil-fuel world,” but we give short shrift to the “clothing” part as we work on gardening and construction projects. We were lucky enough to be offered some growing space near the institute and in addition to growing chicken feed, we thought it would be … More How Hard Could It Be to Make a Shirt?
Our neighbors have run a market garden for years, selling produce at the Dane County Farmers’ Market and others. This year they have decided to scale back and just grow for themselves. They have a large plot with excess capacity and have offered us about five thousand square feet of full-sun growing space. We’re incredibly grateful … More How to Use a Windfall: An Extra 5,000 ft² of Growing Space
In Part I, yesterday, we met the four ways we lose heat: radiation, convection, conduction, and evaporation. Today we’ll look at the three W’s, which work together to combat each one of these heat thieves. The Three W’s: Wicking, Warmth, and Wind Layering is the watchword of keeping warm in the winter. Wearing one … More Keeping Warm in Winter — Part II: Dress for Success with the Three W’s
I grew up in northern Minnesota, the coldest part of the continental United States. I remember playing outside when school was canceled due to extreme weather — the coldest I specifically remember was when my friends and I built a snow fort at -40°F (-40°C). That was the winter when we hit -60°F (-51°C). I … More Keeping Warm in Winter — Part I: How We Lose Heat
While hunting for deer this last fall (we do not buy meat, only eating what we butcher ourselves; hear more about this in Episode 8 of the Low Tech Podcast), I had a little run in with a beaver pond. I had decided to hike a large circuit around the Badfish Creek Wildlife Area one … More Anecdotal Winter Wool Experiment: Wet Socks or No Socks?