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The long and winding road to Dumbass
by pondering_it_all - 01/18/22 03:08 AM
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Gimme some of that good ol time religion
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I spent much of my afternoon watching aeroponic, hydroponic, and composting videos. Thanks, guys.


A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich
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Originally Posted by pondering_it_all
I have cut tree branches in the bottom of one raised bed (Hugelkultur), and that's the bed where my summer squash all perished by fungus. So I'm thinking I should remove the wood, and just add some perlite to help the soil retain moisture instead. We are in a high fire danger zone, so any burning of green waste is illegal: I'm not making any biochar in the foreseeable future.
I don’t think the Hugelkultur has anything to do with the squash fungus. There are three general types fungi at work - pathogens (feeding on your squash, if that’s actually the culprit), saprophytes (feeding on detritus, such as the woody material you buried in the ground), and mycorrhizae (the fungus-root symbionts).

A friend of mine with a lot of gardening experience tried Hugelkultur a few years ago. My impression was that the main benefit was supposed to be moisture retention, but the concept seemed pretty strange to me - one reason being there was nothing natural about it - that’s not how wood decomposes in Nature, and the mess of sticks has lots of air pockets in the soil where the roots would like to be. His experiment was only one year.

From further reading (I haven’t wanted to bother Dr. Johnson, and he can be very hard to get ahold of) it appears that the Johnson-Su compost process is long enough that the biomass passes through a full progression of seral stages, much like a forest ecosystem beginning with a clearcut does with plants - the first stage is “weeds” (hardy colonizers), followed by grasses and forbs, then sunlight loving fast growing trees, then shade tolerant species are able to sprout in the understory, eventually leading to dominance by “climax species” such as western red cedar (I first learned of this dynamic while participating in an old growth inventory study in North Idaho). The climax condition is quite stable and can persist for centuries.

In Johnson’s research he has tracked the species shift as the compost matures over a year’s time and found that in the beginning it is predominantly bacterial, shifting slowly to fungal (of the mycorrhizal variety) - as the detritus is broken down the saprophytic fungi diminish and the pathogens disappear in the beginning (consumed by bacteria) due to the lack of living plants. In the end there are thousands of species of viable microbes, however. Many are symbionts of specific plants, and it is the plants themselves that select them to partner with. Other fungi are generalists.

At about halfway through the seral progression the ratio of bacteria:fungi is approximately 50:50, which is what grasses and garden plants prefer. Mature forests like much higher fungal dominance. Weeds thrive at the other end of the seral spectrum. I think Dr. Elaine Ingham has a great table showing this.

If I was in your situation with limited options for processing the woody debris created by pruning trees and other vegetation management, I’d be inclined to chip it all and use it for mulch, or pile the chips to compost on their own. The material will follow essentially the same process as in the J-Su composter, it will just take longer and be less consistent. Top dressing with a thick wood chip mulch is good, too. The idea of that method depleting soil nitrogen is an old wive’s tale. If you can’t get it chipped, just pile it in smallish piles away from ladder fuels (in case a low burning wildfire comes through). Animals will use it for cover and it will eventually break down.


You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete.
R. Buckminster Fuller
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Check this out (the successional table I mentioned is shown starting at 6:45)



You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete.
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Fun fact: Plutonium (specifically, plutonium-238) was first produced, isolated and then chemically identified between December 1940 and February 1941 by Glenn T. Seaborg, Edwin McMillan, Emilio Segrè, Joseph W. Kennedy, and Arthur Wahl by deuteron bombardment of uranium in the 60-inch (150 cm) cyclotron at the Berkeley Radiation Laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley.

Seaborg chose the symbol "Pu" for the periodic table as a joke. Typical nerd humor is timeless.


We're flying electric helicopters on Mars yet you can't turn on your clothes dryer in Texas. That's because scientists are in charge of Mars, and Republicans are in charge of Texas.
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I see another big-time vaccine-misinformer has died from Covid:

Network Founder Dies

Quote
Televangelist Marcus Lamb, the founder of the conservative Christian Daystar Television Network, which repeatedly promoted anti-vaccine messages, died Tuesday after contracting COVID-19. He was 64.

I'm assuming the hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin didn't work out so well. No problem: Off he goes to be with Jebus!
His wife blames Satan, but that seems a little odd because now he's in heaven just like he wanted.

God sent the vaccines and monoclonal antibodies (all promoted highly by Trump), but I guess he was still holding out for personal divine intervention on that roof.


We're flying electric helicopters on Mars yet you can't turn on your clothes dryer in Texas. That's because scientists are in charge of Mars, and Republicans are in charge of Texas.
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Made a trip to the big city today (Tucson), hadn’t been there for a couple of years. We have about 150 miles on I10 to get there, and there has always been a lot of truck traffic. But today I estimate there were two to three times more semis than I have ever seen before. I think there were more big rigs than cars!

I thought there was a big shortage of trucks and drivers?

Our resident Kirkland Kid will be gratified to know that we spent $1100 simoleans at Costco.


You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete.
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The WTA has canceled tournaments in China out of concern for the safety of China’s premier player.

<crickets>

A major Supreme Court rights decision is about to be overturned, in part with the help of Trump court appointees. This story involves history, medicine, states’ rights, precedence, oh, just all kinds of tasty debate material. This is a major, major case.

<more crickets>

Somebody hang some truck nutz on those stories, maybe they’ll drum up some interest.


Julia
“It’s the shipwreck that leads you to the magical island.”
(Trevor Noah)
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Rachel’s got some Truck Nutz for sale!

The Big Three


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To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete.
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Just finished the intake interview (via Zoom) for the DOE funded NM CERG program (Clean Energy Resilience and Growth). I’m optimistic that it will be key to expanding Trollworks to be effective as a climate change mitigating business venture.


You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete.
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I'm thinking that ending Roe v Wade is high on the conservative Supreme Court's agenda and will be an epic strategic mistake if they see it through. The SCOTUS is currently viewed by many as an activist court looking to mold the law to their own agenda with Constitutional norms falling by the wayside. An illegitimate court if you will. This is gonna throw some wrenches into a lot of political gears.

Regarding the tennis player...when you live in a fascist state it is best to closely adhere to the rules. The laws there have the sort of teeth that some would like to see them have here.


Good coffee, good weed, and time on my hands...
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