Get Even More Visitors To Your Blog, Upgrade To A Business Listing >>

Blog Directory  >  Life Blogs  >  Observations Blogs  >  Walden Effect: Homesteading and Simple Living observations Blog  > 

Walden Effect: Homesteading And Simple Living Blog
Join us in our quest to live simply and explore permaculture, honeybees, and chickens. Also, check out Mark's automatic chicken waterer invention.
Grapes Without Chemicals
2024-05-02 13:55
Our deck planter box grape vine is on its third year of growth. It looks like there might be grapes this year. We went with a Reliance seedless grape mainly because it can usually fruit wit… Read More
Incubation Handbook Now In Print!
2024-04-17 12:00
I’m thrilled to announce that our incubation handbook is now in print! A very skilled intern helped buff up the text over the winter and the result is ready to make your next hatch a m… Read More
Shitake Log Inoculation Video
2024-04-04 15:30 Drilling holes in mushroom logs just got a lot easier and faster with this new shitake drill bit. You will also need the an… Read More
March In The Garden
2024-03-27 18:24
Back in Virginia, March was a prime spring-planting month. Since moving to Ohio, it’s usually been an impatient-waiting month instead. Not this year! A warm winter means my test beds… Read More
Fruit Storage
2024-03-21 14:55
We needed some more fruit storage when our old hanging basket broke. These metal baskets can be mounted on the edge of a kitchen counter or on a flat wall. The post Fruit storage first appe… Read More
Pigeons For Manure, Eggs, And Meat
2024-03-12 16:38
When I saw the above teaser of a library program, I was instantly hooked by the reference to pigeon compost. And the photo Nandini Stockton shared of her manure piles was definitely intrigu… Read More
Daffodil Delight
2024-03-07 17:49
Daffodil flowers are usually one of the first signs of Spring for us here.The post Daffodil delight first appeared on WetKnee Books Read More
Tips For Early Spring Peas
2024-02-28 19:12
Peas don’t like heat, so it’s a good idea to plant them as early as possible. But if you plant too early, you’ll end up with only a couple of survivors spread across a la… Read More
Spinning Brush Scratcher
2024-02-20 15:41
Industrial, rotating brushes are the latest trend in ultra pampering your favorite cow. It seems as if someone has re-purposed some drive thru car wash technology to scratch an itch. Could… Read More
Hex Head Drill Bits
2024-02-08 18:19
These new hex head allen wrench bits are miles ahead of the old L shaped wrenches. They slide right into any impact driver with a 1/4 inch quick connect or the same size hand driver. A nice… Read More
Kindling Splitter Update
2024-01-22 19:56
We’ve had our Kindling Splitter for over 2 years now and it continues to make kindling safe and easy. It seems to help to cut your pieces a few inches higher than the height of the sp… Read More
How And Why To Start A Pit Garden
2023-12-27 19:46
On our first homestead, ground water was so high in certain areas that we had to build extra-tall mounds just to prevent plant roots from drowning. On our current ridge, the problem is the e… Read More
Third-generation Hybrid Hazels
2023-12-13 09:59
Hazelnuts have a lot of potential as a low-work garden plant, but blights make straight-up European hazelnuts problematic in the eastern United States. Luckily, various institutions have be… Read More
Scrap Stacking
2023-12-06 19:46
We got all those wood mill scraps cut up and stacked in the woodshed. The post Scrap Stacking first appeared on WetKnee Books Read More
A Brand New Gardening Course For You!
2023-12-01 09:55
As long-time readers are aware, Mark’s a big believer in building your way out of repetitive or unpleasant homesteading tasks. So I get to enjoy his amazing caterpillar tunnels, porch… Read More
Plastic Bottle Bee Keeping
2023-11-23 22:59
Advoko MAKES on You tube has been experimenting with using plastic bottles to farm bees. It seems to be cheaper and easier. That big bottle is a European recycled beer keg. He has even conf… Read More
The Best Time To Harvest Ginger Roots
2023-11-09 18:22
Last year, I wrote that, when growing ginger in the home garden, you should wait to harvest until after the leaves die back in the autumn. Now I’m not so sure that’s true. This… Read More
How To Cut Fiberglass Insulation
2023-11-02 19:00
I learned the hard way during some recent insulation work that a pair of scissors is painful. The standard method of using a utility knife on a hard surface is good if you have plenty of ro… Read More
What To Do With Old Solar Panels
2023-10-25 18:19
In my last post, I shared my brother’s journey to upgrade his off-grid home from the multi-decade-old original solar system to a new one that meshed with his needs in the modern age… Read More
Firewood Teamwork
2023-10-20 14:08
How do we cut up those long wood mill discards in just the right size for firewood? We now use a fence post next to some porch steps. Anna pushes the board up against the fence post where I… Read More
An Upgraded, Off-grid Solar System
2023-10-12 15:44
Remember my brother, Joey’s, underground solar house? Thirteen years later, I dropped by for a tour to see how it’s aged…and been reenvisioned. Upgrade, round 1 Five year… Read More
Homesteader Vacations
2023-10-05 19:20
If you’re on our email list, you’ve probably seen a lot of these photos already. But the truth is, I’m about to leave Mark holding down the fort while I travel south for y… Read More
Firewood Stacking Puzzle
2023-09-28 14:58
We started cutting up and stacking our neighbors’ wood-mill throwaways. A new problem cropped up. How to stack unconventional sized firewood? This is what we came up with. Is there a… Read More
Four Tips For Sawing Your Own Lumber
2023-09-22 16:06
When Mark and I went to pick up more waste slabs of lumber for firewood, I talked our neighbor into letting me pick his brain about what it’s like to own a homestead-scale sawmill. I… Read More
2/3 Mistake
2023-09-15 17:12
I chose 2/3 over 2/4 boards in an effort to make our caterpillar tunnels lighter. We now know this makes them a little too heavy and prone to decay faster than expected. I was able to fix t… Read More
A Solar Flashlight That Actually Works
2023-09-06 15:35
In 2012, Mark and I invested in two solar flashlights for camping and power outages. They lasted an amazingly long time, but eventually the batteries stopped holding a charge. Rather than c… Read More
Bite Sized Tomatoes
2023-08-28 18:44
We got a late start on our deck grown tomatoes. A bit of a mix up on which variety this is but I really like the sweet taste and easy harvest. This is the second year our deck tomatoes seem… Read More
Maggots In The Compost Bin
2023-08-22 18:16
Dear Walden Garden gods, My compost bin has been overrun with maggots and fat lizards I am sure that this is linked to my gluttonous watermelon consumption this summer. I am so ashamed! Sho… Read More
Spiralized Squash Marinara
2023-08-15 16:45
Are you swimming in summer squash like we are? While you can leave the excess on unsuspecting, non-gardeners’ porches, I’ve found the following one-pot recipe makes eating… Read More
12 Cubic Feet Steel Dump Cart Choices
2023-08-07 17:34
Anna and I assembled a Craftsman steel dump cart while visiting my Mom recently. The book says it takes 45 minutes to put together but we needed nearly 2 hours. It’s a solid cart that… Read More
Propping Up Anti-bird Netting
2023-08-01 17:49
Our berry enclosure has been unsuccessful at keeping out chipmunks but successful at keeping out birds. So we moved our strawberries (aka chipmunk magnets) to a different setup and are usi… Read More
Kohl Wheelbarrow Update Details
2023-07-26 17:10
Some of the problems with restoring a wheelbarrow is the damage around bolt holes which prevents the round headed bolts from biting in so you can tighten them. An exterior screw with a wash… Read More
Kohl Wheelbarrow Wooden Handle Repair
2023-07-12 17:33
The wheelbarrow repair was not as easy as it first looked. Holes in the wooden handles did not match up with the modern Kohl design. Wooden Handles           … Read More
Gooseberry Fool Taste Test
2023-07-04 22:23
Fourteen years ago, Mom sent me her family recipe for Gooseberry Fool. Foolishly, I waited over a decade to give it a try. I also tweaked the ingredients a bit based on other recipes on the… Read More
Kohl Wheelbarrow Demise
2023-06-28 18:57
What about the Kohl lifetime warranty? Not so fast. Kohl tools have a generous lifetime warranty but Kohl products do not. They still sell the same 6 cubic feet Kohl model…now it&rsq&helli…Read More
Garden Experiment Updates
2023-06-21 13:00
I’m sure you’ve been waiting with baited breath to hear how various experiments panned out. Wait no longer! Results are in. Quirk cucumbers Of the new vegetable varieties we&rsq&hell…Read More
Tenax Green Plastic Mesh
2023-06-15 18:39
We used some green plastic mesh to add some walls to our woodshed structure. The Tenax brand of garden fence material has been the mesh I prefer because it’s cheap and easy. Next step… Read More
How And Why To Garden For Moths
2023-06-06 15:52
I usually focus on food gardening instead of ornamental gardening both on this blog and in life, but I couldn’t resist sharing some of the pointers I learned at a fascinating library… Read More
Styrofoam Ant Tunnels
2023-05-30 17:53
What are these extremely small white particles appearing out of nowhere? It took me almost a year to figure out some ants were making a home in a section of our styrofoam. We don’t li… Read More
SharkBite Connectors For Amateur Plumbers
2023-05-24 09:55
We got a good deal on our current trailer in part because the pipes had been allowed to freeze over the winter. Our first round of plumbing repairs seems to have held up great, but a new le… Read More
Growing In The Gutter
2023-05-17 14:31
One challenge of our deck growing area is the shade it gets from close by structures. The new experiment is to see what we can grow in this gutter area that escapes some of the shade. A 10… Read More
Harvesting The First Hairy Vetch For Mulch
2023-05-09 17:40
Remember my disappointment in summer-planted hairy vetch? Well, that patch kept growing slowly throughout the fall and winter, then took off like a rocket this spring. I needed some mulch t… Read More
Easy Water Hose Hub
2023-05-02 18:39
The last water hose splitter we tried was plastic and it only lasted 3 years. What I like about this all brass splitter is the mounting holes that allow you to secure it to a wall. Having… Read More
Growing And Cooking Homegrown Asparagus
2023-04-25 15:55
It’s asparagus season and high time for an asparagus post! I’m not going to regurgitate the information you can find in any book or website about giving your plants a few years t… Read More
UV Protection On Clear Roofing Panels
2023-04-17 15:44
We had part of a clear roofing panel that got recycled into a small porch covering last week. I almost missed the fact that only one side has UV protection. This explains why some clear pa… Read More
Should You Plant Your Spring Garden Early?
2023-04-11 19:01
I don’t have a plant problem…yet. But I did pot up my indoor seedling shelf (left photo) into an outdoor seedling table (right photo) this afternoon. Which will be great&helli&helli…Read More
Upward Growth
2023-04-04 16:42
We noticed our first Snow Pea climber of 2023 a few days ago. It seems to me that the difference between good and great climbers is a little nudge here and there to encourage upward growth… Read More
Time To Plant Broccoli
2023-03-22 17:57
If you have some broccoli seedlings maturing inside today is the day to set them free. Broccoli is one of our biggest producers thanks to Anna’s careful planning and our new caterpi… Read More
New Chicken Books
2023-03-14 16:59
Do you have friends jumping on the chicken bandwagon this spring? Then I hope you’ll point them toward my Getting Started With Your Working Chicken, entirely free in ebook form and di… Read More
Agribon Fabric Protection
2023-03-08 15:39
Another advantage to using a planter box is how easy it is to cover delicate plants in hopes of surviving a dip down to 20 degrees. I made a rectangle the size we needed and attached just on… Read More
Jumping The Gun On The Garden Year
2023-02-28 16:24
I like to direct-seed leaf lettuce under a row-cover-coated caterpillar tunnel in early February, a holdover from gardening half a zone warmer than where we are now. Most years, those early… Read More
Foraging For Firewood
2023-02-21 14:27
One of our neighbors has a sawmill and he’s been making his own boards for his first chicken coop. We offered him money for this truckload of firewood but he was more interested in get… Read More
2023-02-08 16:27
We chop wood on a slight incline and sometimes a piece tries to make a run for it down the hill. Our new firewood catcher saves a little time and effort while also serving as a stack point… Read More
New Garden Varieties For 2023
2023-01-31 20:08
The seed rush has started! My calendar tells me to start the first lettuce outside if the ground is warm enough on February 2 (which it almost never is up here) and the first broccoli inside… Read More
Plumbing Innovation
2023-01-24 15:49
I’ve been putting off a toilet replacement because the part where you lower the toilet onto a wax seal is just above my skill level. The new style universal gasket is made of rubber an… Read More
Happy Solstice!
2022-12-21 14:00
Okay, so I know I promised you a farm tour video this week. How about next week? Instead, here’s a bit of our journey through time for the solstice. Building a stone house in the earl… Read More
Favorite Fall Apple Varieties
2022-11-29 08:22
Our local farmer’s market has the most apple varieties I’ve ever seen, all harvested close to Athens, Ohio. As a result, I’ve been running taste tests over the last few ye… Read More
Harvest End Soup
2022-11-15 14:35
When your harvest looks like this: It’s time to cook this: Ingredients: 6 cups of cherry tomatoes (or 2.5 cups of stewed tomatoes) 1 chicken breast with bone in (or 3 cups of chicken… Read More
Replacing A Bathtub Faucet In A Trailer
2022-11-01 08:22
Replacing a bathtub faucet turned out to be much easier than either of us anticipated. Turn off all water to the trailer, unscrew both hot and cold water hoses along with the hose leading u… Read More
Kindling Splitter After One Year Of Use
2022-10-25 12:00
We’ve had this new kindling splitter for a year now and it has really paid for itself in time saved.Making a bucket of kindling this way takes about 10 minutes and feels super safe.I… Read More
2022-10-11 15:19
Our black soldier fly composting system is slowing down due to colder Fall nights. Austrian designer Katharina Unger has invented a new, reliable product to farm the larvae inside for hum… Read More
2022-10-04 10:44
I had so much fun reading How to Grow Ginger by Leigh Tate. But before I dive into my review, I have to include an important caveat. Reading this book doesn't necessarily mean your mothers… Read More
2022-09-19 15:56
Awesome reader and cover-crop experimenter Craig wrote in last month with his questions and comments about planting cover crops between young fruit trees in mid Ohio. He promised me pictur… Read More
2022-09-12 14:59
We invited a couple of stray cats to join us a few months ago. Daisy and her playful son Dandelion. I decided they need a proper box to relax in and actually ordered a cat box. The box… Read More
2022-09-05 20:14
As the summer garden season winds down, I'm filling gaps not needed for cool-season veggies with cover crops. And, in addition to my old standbys, I'm running a few experimental plantings… Read More
2022-08-15 14:30
The deck planting box is turning out to be a good alternative spot for tomato plants. We decided to delete the roof overhang section to increase sun exposure time. It also opens up a spa… Read More
2022-08-08 15:21
I'm very excited to announce that our first video course is now live! If you use this link before the end of the day Friday, you should be able to snag your copy for half off. Even if you… Read More
2022-08-01 17:55
Our new friend Brad was able to squeeze us in Friday for a drone rescue from a tree Read More
2022-07-25 15:29
When we moved to Ohio, we went hardcore on our garden fencing. And the barrier has kept out the deer I was most concerned about. Unfortunately, nothing else seems fazed. It's taken years… Read More
2022-07-18 18:11
We made a short video that updates our experience using 2 recycled bathtubs as outdoor worm bins. Spoiler alert! A cheap heating pad coupled with a thermocube ensures the worms can survi… Read More
Washing Chanterelles
2022-07-08 17:21
Heavy rains and warm weather means it's chanterelle season! I usually don't wash mushrooms, but these were too dirty to merely brush off. Luckily, half an hour in the food dehydrator took… Read More
2022-07-04 15:17
Mark and I splurged on an electric wheelbarrow a year and a half ago and are very glad we did. We chose the Snapper XD because of its hefty battery, which meant the wheelbarrow was able t… Read More
Wheelbarrow Fire Ring
2022-06-29 11:19
Do you have a rusted-out wheelbarrow waiting to be hauled to the dump? If you've been homesteading for at least a decade, I'll bet you do. Well don't haul off that wheelbarrow! Prop it up… Read More
Protecting Strawberries From Chipmunks
2022-04-12 19:07
I did the unthinkable last winter --- I ripped out all of my strawberries. The issue was chipmunks. Our berry enclosure is bird proof, but no matter how hard we worked we couldn't plug eve… Read More
Turning A Closet Into A Window Seat
2021-12-15 20:50
Mark's been promising to add a window to my office ever since we moved to Ohio. But I didn't take him up on it because I couldn't quite visualize what I wanted. Then, in November, a burst… Read More
How To Identify Fireflies
2020-07-15 20:43
I'm happiest when I have something complex and natural to keep my brain occupied. This year I found the perfect hobby --- fireflies! A citizen science project asks you to spend thirty sec… Read More
Adventure From Your Armchair
2020-07-01 16:07
I have a new book out...and it's a total pandemic experiment. Gap Year is available in print only and is on the pricey side for 32 pages (full-color will do that), but it should also be v… Read More

Share the post

Walden Effect: Homesteading and Simple Living


Subscribe to Walden Effect: Homesteading And Simple Living

Get updates delivered right to your inbox!

Thank you for your subscription