Super Coop Part III – The Green Roof!

This chicken coop has taken me a long time to build. Correction: the materials for this chicken coop have taken a long time to find; hands on building time was pretty easy! Sadly the ‘foraged’ trailer that made the super-coop mobile was reclaimed by its owner and the coop is now more of a static…

Cow Manure

Three miles from my house, there is a field full of cows. The field is five feet deep in cow manure. Technically that’s not true. It does not qualify as manure until it is used to fertilise land. So, when I arrived at the cow field, what I was really looking at was a huge…

Sow True Seed

  I have a lot to say about this seed company, but for now, just let me give you a glimpse of the future of food:   I have some digging to do…

Turning Pallets into Eggs – Part II

It can be hard to plan for an apocalypse. No one seems to know when or what it’ll looks like – or rather, there are just too many options to choose from. However, if you stick with the broad biblical categories of Pestilence, War, Famine and Death, there is one failsafe rule: When those horsemen…

Nature Beats Nurture

Exciting times – you treat them like ladies and they act like boys… I gave them respectable lady-like names: Devon and Delilah. They only played with other hens; they should not have even been aware of how boy-chickens behave. I restricted their reading material to pro-women pamphlets and Margaret Thatcher’s auto-biography. I swore Deo to…

Herbs for Healthy Hens

One morning, whilst feeding the chickens their breakfast, Lacy pooped by my feet and the poop was wriggling and writhing. I’m not a scatologist, but I knew this wasn’t normal. Worms = nasty! But free ranging chickens get worms, so this isn’t the most interesting part of my story. Interesting Part of My Story: I…

Three easy steps to not not getting a puppy

    STEP 1. Agree to go to the Humane Society. Me: we’re just looking. Belle: I know. Me: we are not leaving with a dog. Belle: I know. STEP 2. Agree to take an adorable puppy to the ‘bonding room’. Me: we can’t take one home. Belle: I know. Me: you better not fall…

Getting to know ‘Hen of the Woods’

I recently attended a Wild Foods Workshop at Meanwhile Back in Saluda. When Alan Muskat (popularly know as The Mushroom Man) told us we were going to have lots of conversations with the plants, I knew we’d get along. Me: hey pretty plant. Plant: hi there. Me: Chris, Chris Smith. When you say it fast…

Saved by Community Supported Agriculture

Buy local. Buy organic. Buy seasonal. Take a bank loan too? You’ll need one. This was my dilema when I moved to Greenville, SC. I wanted to eat the good stuff but it was a struggle to afford it. You say: Grow your own? I say: Yes, yes. I know! In time I’ll have the…

Worm Farm Mark II [aka Getting it Right]

My worms speak to me with a thousand little voices. As does Google. The big difference is my worms are synchronised and harmonious, whereas Google is a clashing cacophony of cross-information. I built Worm Farm Mark I based on some internet information that turned out to be wrong. I knew it was wrong when all…

Garden Mushrooms

My back garden is host to a panoply of mushrooms: I wonder if any of them are edible? In all likelihood they are more dangerous than the black widow that lives on my bean planter: