Not much to say here other than making this cute little stepped path using boughs from the plum tree has made me happy as larry – which is very happy for those of you not up to speed with dated english slang.
It may not have anything to do with growing veg but somehow couchsurfing feels like it belongs on this blog.
Basically you sign up to a social networking site of people who are happy for you to come and kip on their couch. Nice, huh? Have a peek here – http://www.couchsurfing.com/
I have had one person to stay so far and all went swimmingly. My first couchsurf will be in Glasgow in two weeks time.
Filed under: Learning, Thinking | Tags: burning, fan, flume, recycled, reuse, smoke free, wood chip, wood stove
A quick jaunt up north to Enfield on the train from Hackney Downs and we are in Gunpowder Park at The Energy Cafe for a workshop on pedal power. Andrew was also about and demonstrating his smoke-free wood stove which impressed me muchly.
Hooking up a fan to feed the flames more air increases the efficiency of the combustion and decreases the amount of smoke, which is essentially unburnt hydrocarbons or very small bits of wood to you and me.
All of the stove had been made from reused parts found in local skips. The main body was an old flue buried into a tyre filled with soil, the fan was from an old laptop. As the flue was already double walled it provided excellent insulation so the wood could burn at a higher temperature. The fan created a vortex in the main chamber which meant better mixing of air again leading to a higher burn temperature resulting in no smoke at all and 5kW of heat apparently!
By the looks of things the plum tree has been in trouble for sometime. Jamie gave us some tips on pruning back in the autumn but advised us to leave it until february for the big chop.
Tree haircuts are fun… in fact anything that gives you an excuse to climb things is fun… perhaps that is what ivy is useful for… constantly regrowing so we can keep climbing back up and cut it back again…
Official advice includes pruning tree back to four main bits (boughs I think!) and generally getting rid of anything that looks unhappy. Things to look for include bark condition, branches doing funny things like doubling back on themselves or wrapping themselves around each other… etc etc…
I hope the squirrels let the tree alone this year to bear some plums.