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Category: Garden, Patio & BBQ

Greenhouse Heater – Upgrade

My new greenhouse heater that I luckily got hold of. Since the previous one unfortunately was a real letdown, I gave another product a chance.

Originally, this an emergency kerosene heater, even suitable for living spaces, more expensive but also much more potent and durable. (This one to be precise, but it’s available as several different models for different prices and in different qualities). 

I tested this product thoroughly and over several days before writing another enthusiastic article, and in this case I can indeed give a clear recommendation. It’s got a capacity of about four liters of kerosene which it burns in about 36 hours on the lowest setting – a thirsty sailor. But it works! As soon as it’s heated up, it doesn’t stink very much anymore, it doesn’t self-extinguish with a half-filled tank and it heats my 6 m² greenhouse to 3 °C when it’s -10 °C outside reliably.

Also, it just looks cool, doesn’t it? Let’s keep that one.


Chicken Den Insulation

I’m from germany – the homeland of orders and regulation. Amongst many others, there is an overabundance of strict and in-depth building laws to follow meticulously. So, as a decent citizen I have diligently insulated the chicken den to keep up to our beloved green party’s visionary energy saving laws. </irony off>

Well, ok, also to keep it frost free and cozy for the girls over the winter 😁 It kept an inside temperature of 6°C when it was -4°C at night, just from body heat. I’m pleased with this result.

I used 30 mm Jackodur ™ for insulating, which is waterproof, rot resistant and non toxic. It is a popular material for the thermal insulation of basements, so it’s available in every hardware store and it’s fairly affordable.

 


Greenhouse Heater

Temperatures are dropping meanwhile (especially at night) but I want to try cultivating certain suitable greens over the winter nonetheless. So, in order to keep the greenhouse frost-free, I ordered a greenhouse heater – this product in particular with about 300W of power. You can purchase it for around € 60,- if you’re willing to invest a little time surfing the net, and so far it works.


Grumpy Molting Girl

Poor Priscilla in the middle of molting. She has already grown a lot of brand new feathers and many pinfeathers are waiting to develop, but she still looks like she got under a lawnmower.


Update: Chicken Care Cheat Sheets

Now that a year and a half have passed, I have learned geometrically and gained a lot of experience tending to my brave and pretty chickens. So here are my updated notes on chicken care and feeding. Maybe someone will find this useful, since they’re solely born from experience and, well, trial and error – but that makes these notes all the more “original” and reliable for me.


Flower Pot Candle Heaters… Debunked a little

Fall is here again and winter is approaching inevitably. So the annual posts on clay pot candle heaters are prospering again as they do every year. With germany’s energy crisis becoming more and more obvious, lots of untrustworthy and even mainstream voices rise recommending tealight-ovens as an alternative means of heating. In the light of a recent discussion, let me clarify things on this issue a little bit if you allow, ok?

I have one of these contraptions (home made of course) running in my greenhouse – they work fine and as long as you know what they’re really doing you can use them adequately and rely on them properly.

 


Spoiled Girls

 

My beautiful and nice girls enjoying their favorite snack: Dried mealworms. Sooooo gudd!

They’re in the middle of molting at the moment and unfortunately, they picked up a bad habit from earlier again, namely occasionally pecking at each others feathers. Therefore I guess this extra protein allowance from the worms will do them good. Alongside, they’ll get more calcium over the next weeks.


New Mushroom Cultivation Bags

The last self made mushroom cultivation bags I tried were such a success that I made new ones and challenged my luck again. Here’s the three new bags that I hope will thrive and prosper:

  1. Some “Mystery Mushrooms” (I found an old and non-specified mycelium bag in the shed. Let’s see… 🙂 )
  2. King Oyster Mushrooms (lat. pleurotus eryngii)
  3. Regular Oyster Mushrooms (lat. pleurotus ostreatus)

Read here how to make your own mushroom growing bags and here’s where I buy (de) my mycelium and accessories.


Another Mushroom Harvest

This is the 6. (sixth!) harvest from the do-it-yourself mushroom cultivation bags in the homemade fruiting chamber now and I’m really overwhelmed! If this is going on that way, I’ll never buy any mushrooms from the store again 🙂

Also, I’ll be trying to cultivate some additional sorts like King Oyster (pleurotus eryngii), Shiitake (lentinula edodes) , etc. in the future.


Strawberry Raised Bed

We got a new chicken-quarantine-box (a former luxury guinea pig enclosure, with large windows, better ventilation and easy access), so we were able to re-purpose the trusty old one: Now it’s a raised bed for the SO’s perennial strawberry plants.


 

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