Food Garden · Homesteading · Observations

Sunbirds & Spiderwebs – Something Special

We have a few residential sunbirds in the neighbourhood - not the very flashy ones like those in the fynbos areas of South Africa, but none the less gorgeous little birdies. The Whitebellied sunbird, Nectarinia talatala is a common sight for those living close to bushveld towards the northern parts of southern Africa. It is… Continue reading Sunbirds & Spiderwebs – Something Special

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Homesteading · Off Grid · Solar

Solar Power in South Africa Part 2: Battery Basics, Living with Solar in Gauteng, South Africa.

 Global horizontal irradiation is the most important parameter for evaluation of solar energy potential of a particular region and the most basic value for PV simulations.The maps are free for public use, their reproduction and adaptation is authorised provided the following source is acknowledged: SolarGIS © 2015 GeoModel Solar Must know facts about Solar Batteries… Continue reading Solar Power in South Africa Part 2: Battery Basics, Living with Solar in Gauteng, South Africa.

Food Garden · Homesteading · Observations · Soil care

Sustainable, Productive and Economical Vegetable Gardening (Part 2): Conservation Agriculture

Sustainable*: 1 maintained for long periods of time 2 use of natural resources without environmental damage   Productive*: 1 producing crop yield abundantly and efficiently 2 being worthy or satisfactory   Economical*: 1 making the most of resources 2 inexpensive 3 avoid unnecessary waste 4 efficient use of time and energy * Definitions according to… Continue reading Sustainable, Productive and Economical Vegetable Gardening (Part 2): Conservation Agriculture

Observations · Pest Control

DIY Bird Deterrents

There be Bulbuls (Round 1...) During the summer growing season we have had some problems with Black-eyed Bulbuls that help themselves to our tomatoes, raspberries and figs. The nasty little buggers always managed to get to the fruits just when they’ve ripened – the cats aren't doing their jobs of scaring the birds away! So… Continue reading DIY Bird Deterrents

How to Grow · Profile · Vegetable

Carrot: How to Grow – Vegetable of the Month

Carrot stats/requirements at a glance Ease of Raising: 4/5 – Easy, monthly check up Water: 3/5 – Moderate (high heat, every second day) Sun: 5/5 – Full sun, no shade Training: 1/5 – None Fertilise/Feeding: 3/5 – Moderate (growing, monthly) to Minimal (during root set, none) Time to Harvest: 4/5 – A long time (3-4… Continue reading Carrot: How to Grow – Vegetable of the Month

climate · Drought · Observations · Water Supply

South Africa steering towards a Water Disaster Area: 50 L of water pp/day – the new normal #DayZero #ThinkWater

South Africa is suffering from a crippling drought brought on by the worst El Nino in decades, starting in 2014.  Cape Town (south point of South Africa) and the surrounding areas have become drought disaster area at the moment as many farmers and villages do not have enough water due to poor planning of infrastructure,… Continue reading South Africa steering towards a Water Disaster Area: 50 L of water pp/day – the new normal #DayZero #ThinkWater

Fruit · How to Grow · Profile

Tamarillo (Tree Tomato) – How to Grow: Fruit of the Month

Tamarillo stats/requirements at a glance Ease of Raising: 1/5 Daily check-ups Water: 4/5 Daily Sun: 2/5 Partial shade Training: 5/5 Absolutely, train for optimal production Fertilise/Feeding: 4/5 Fortnightly Time to Harvest: 5/5 Forever, 5+ months Frost Hardiness: 1/4 Frost tender, can’t cope light frost Uses Culinary Most Problematic Nemesis: Aphids, Whitefly, Leafhoppers Container Plant: Yes,… Continue reading Tamarillo (Tree Tomato) – How to Grow: Fruit of the Month