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Find out how to identify a bird just from the sound of its singing with our bird song identifier playlist. Great ideas on how your garden, or even a small backyard or balcony, can become a mini nature reserve. This fantastic wetland site is located north of Southport town centre and has some of the best wildlife in the region. Water brings a magical quality to your garden and is the key to life for so many creatures that live in it. Create a very small pond out of something like an old washing up bowl. You might even see a bird having a bath.
WATCH RELATED VIDEO: How to plant up an alpine sinkContent:
- DIY Compost Sink
- How to Build a Rain Garden to Filter Run-Off
- Create a mini-pond
- Preparing and Planting for Sink Gardens
- Alkali Sink
- How to turn your backyard into a carbon sink
DIY Compost Sink
You can think of heat sinks as heat traps of sorts, or thermal mass solar batteries that store daytime heat for release after sunset. It is rather extraordinary how a simple thing like hot stone can make the difference between a good tomato and a great tomato, outside or inside, in large spaces and very small spaces, especially in temperate climates with shorter growing seasons.
This corner patio garden of raised beds, protected somewhat from the elements by a sloping 12ft high glass roof with two open sides, and temperature-hacked by the combined thermal mass of the stone floor, stone fountain, heavy pottery, and the thick cedar-clad lath and plaster exterior walls of my home, is a tomato lovers dream come true.
This was evidence late September, when during a day of filming segments for his new Permaculture Series, Modern Farmer publisher Frank Giustra and I returned time and again to this spot to chat about his favourite subject, tomatoes.
Sungolds in particular, are his favourite cherry type tomatoes, and mine too. Like Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon wine grapes, Sungold and other tomatoes benefit considerably from long warm days, supplemented by slow-drip solar heat delivered well into the night courtesy of low-slung stone.
Growing grapes and tomatoes in rocky soil is of course one very celebrated way of capturing and storing solar energy for nighttime release, but stone pavers, stone planters, stone edging, raiser planters, buildings, and bulk water containment accomplish the same thing, to varying degrees. Long past first frost, my heat sinked tomatoes are still ripening nicely on the vine, albeit more slowly than in summer. You can think of heat sinks as heat traps of sorts, or thermal mass solar batteries that store daytime heat for release after sunset, as the outside temperature drops below the temperature of the stored energy.
Precise release rates factor into the equation also, but as I understand and have experienced it, a higher SHC indicates both a longer heating up time, and a longer cooling down time. Where I live in the Pacific Northwest, we receive about hours of sunlight per year, with the prime growing months of July and August each receiving about hours of sunlight, with average day and night time temperatures of 70F and 57F respectively.
Heat sinks therefore are my friends. By combining one or more of these factors, we can hack summer well into early winter, which is what I have learned to do over several seasons experimenting with various combinations and arrangements of plantings on our back patio.
A large herb planter on casters acts as a mobil solar heater. Evenly moist soil holds twice as much heat as dry soil. Three or four 6-ft long by inch wide stock feeders on casters are planted with anywhere from 15 to 20 tomato plants that I start indoors and then pot-up in the greenhouse starting in April.
The cumulative thermal mass of these elements collects and traps heat during the cloudiest of days, and babies the tomatoes well past the best-before date of tomatoes grown in exposed garden beds far from supplementary radiant heat. I water the soil organic compost at the base of the tomatoes, keeping the leaves and fruit dry and blight-free.
Two or three varieties of basil are companion planted along the front of the raised beds, about 1ft away from the tomatoes, keeping insects at bay but still leaving room for watering just roots.
My daily routine over the summer, during early morning garden rounds, includes a visit to the tomatoes to harvest just the ripe fruit yes fruit, not veg. I place my hand over each fully-coloured tomato that I believe to be ripe and pinch gently just behind the blossom greens, at the point where the fruit meets the small stem of its cluster. I sort the fruit into Sungolds and reds, then at the end of the week I de-stem the tomatoes, cut them in half, toss them in excellent quality olive oil and confit garlic oil you can use purchased garlic oil , plus sea salt and a pinch of Calabrese chili flakes, and I place them cut side up on parchment-lined sheet pans to dry only partially in a F oven for two or three hours, until they have given up most of their moisture and concentrated their sweetness.
You can of course use a dehydrator to dry tomatoes, but if you want to involve oil and spices, oven drying is the way to go.
Every quart of fresh tomatoes yields more-or-less one 8oz freezer container of oven-dried tomatoes in oil. I top each packed portion with a generous pour of beautiful olive oil and a small wreath of fresh oregano or sweet marjoram from the garden, snap on the lid and a label, and then freeze them for use throughout the following year. It is hard to describe just how delicious these oven-dried beauties are, and how happy they make my family during the cold and dark months of winter.
Serving suggestion: toss together with olive oil and parmesan or pecorino as a simple pasta sauce, chop and add to plain tomato pasta sauce, serve on fresh bread, use in place of fresh tomato for crostini, serve warm over baked brie, garnish soups or grilled veg. This year, I left the vines happily producing and ripening fruit, though increasingly slowly as fall progressed well into winter.
Two weeks into November, I harvested several quarts of still-green tomatoes, and cut the vines down to the soil level, leaving the roots intact to compost-in-place. I took the green tomatoes inside to off-vine ripen inside shallow brown cardboard boxes placed inside brown paper grocery bags. The ethylene gas produced by the tomatoes as they ripen stays inside the bag, hastening the process, while oxygen passes freely through the paper. After less than a week I was able to sort a sheet pan full of ripe red and gold tomatoes from the boxes and dry them whole, very slowly in the oven.
The indoor ripening had fortified the skin just slightly, allowing them to oven-dry without bursting, in much the same way one would dry grapes for raisins. By utilizing five of the 12 Permaculture Principles, namely: observation and interaction, catching and storing energy, utilizing renewable resources, creatively using and responding to change, and producing no waste, I utilize heat sinks to make the best of our relatively short summer. Granted I utilized my electric oven to dry the tomatoes, rather then a solar dryer, but such is the way of urban permaculture — we must bend and adapt and do our best with what we have.
I utilize thermal mass to capture and store solar energy in many other places throughout our urban permaculture garden as well, and for many other purposes. Along the south-facing bottom edge of our herb spiral, a small raised lavender berm planted up against the brick facade blooms more quickly and more robustly than lavender plants planted just one foot further away from the brick, just above them, and lavender planted at the very crown of the spiral, blooms still later.
Staged blooming is advantageous to bees and other pollinator insects that rely on our garden for habitat, and I in turn rely on pollinators to ensure that the berry bed and dwarf fruit orchard located very near to the herb spiral, set fruit.
Heavy concrete planters throughout the garden encourage early-blooming lavender as well. Stone and concrete pots and planters help keep soil moist between waterings, doubling its solar energy absorption capacity. Anyone at all with an outdoor space of any size, can utilize heat sinks to optimize solar energy. A small concrete planter, heat reflected from an inside wall, even maintenance of soil moisture can enhance performance and productivity.
Windowsill gardens qualify too, as these very same principles apply. Heat sinks, thermal mass, earth batteries, heat beds, solar greenhouses and many other hot topics allow permaculture designers and permaculture farmers to lean hard on renewable, natural resources without upsetting or harming the environment. All of us, no matter how or where in the world we live, can lean in a bit too. We can change our relationship with the natural world and take one small step toward sustainability.
The collective power of millions of small gestures can indeed make a giant dent in the universe, and reverse the trajectory of catastrophic climate change. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. We quickly realized the expense of filling them with gravel and soil would be cost prohibitive.
Do think this will work as a heat sink, or will the water have the opposite effect? Check out the new Million Gardens Movement website and get gardening! Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and are used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies.
Laura Marie Neubert. Non Necessary cookies to view the content. Chatting about thermal mass and harnessing solar energy with Modern Farmer publisher Frank Giustra.
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How to Build a Rain Garden to Filter Run-Off
Blog Contact Us Directions. Shop For Plants Cart Contents. Saltbush, Atriplex spp. They used to convert these soils into agriculture by pumping a truck load of sulphuric acid on each field, which did not work for long. Then they tried flooding the fields and leaching the salts off. This led to the bird deaths at Kesterson Wildlife Refuge Selenium also leached out of the fields.
Learn to build your own outdoor sink. Easy to create, it will provide a convenient way to rinse off your garden harvest, fill a vase, or water a wilted.
Create a mini-pond
I've never seen someone look so enthusiastic about using a multi-tool! Good on ya! Thanks, Barbara. I see you work for a pest control company Can't wait until the day you say: "hey HP, wanna come over and eat the food I just picked out of the garden! Oh boy, fingers crossed on that one! Really hoping not to kill our plants. My mom recommends a layer of diatomaceous earth food grade on dry soil to deter snails and slugs. It makes them very unhappy as it is sharp on their mushy little bodies and is completely organic and safe. Oh interesting!
Preparing and Planting for Sink Gardens
Every year, trees and plants across the world absorb a vast amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. But a new study suggests this massive carbon sink could instead become a source of carbon dioxide by the end of the century. This means we might not be able to rely on plants soaking up our emissions for much longer, the lead author tells Carbon Brief. Through photosynthesis, plants convert carbon dioxide, water and sunlight into the fuel they need to grow, locking up carbon in their branches, stems and leaves in the process.
Although traditionally used for alpine gardens, sinks are suitable for many other shallow-rooting plants and can add a rustic look when placed in a sunny outdoor corner.
My husband, Wayne, built our workstation from an old stainless steel workbench that a neighbor was no longer using. Wayne used a 4-inch cookie wheel on a die grinder to make a swirl pattern on the countertop. The stainless steel sink came from a junkyard. Wayne fashioned the high-arc faucet out of coated half-inch copper tubing and added a ball valve to it. We added an extra element to our backyard garden worktable: an umbrella. An old picnic table umbrella provides shade for the vegetables, and for me.
How to turn your backyard into a carbon sink
You can think of heat sinks as heat traps of sorts, or thermal mass solar batteries that store daytime heat for release after sunset. It is rather extraordinary how a simple thing like hot stone can make the difference between a good tomato and a great tomato, outside or inside, in large spaces and very small spaces, especially in temperate climates with shorter growing seasons. This corner patio garden of raised beds, protected somewhat from the elements by a sloping 12ft high glass roof with two open sides, and temperature-hacked by the combined thermal mass of the stone floor, stone fountain, heavy pottery, and the thick cedar-clad lath and plaster exterior walls of my home, is a tomato lovers dream come true. This was evidence late September, when during a day of filming segments for his new Permaculture Series, Modern Farmer publisher Frank Giustra and I returned time and again to this spot to chat about his favourite subject, tomatoes. Sungolds in particular, are his favourite cherry type tomatoes, and mine too. Like Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon wine grapes, Sungold and other tomatoes benefit considerably from long warm days, supplemented by slow-drip solar heat delivered well into the night courtesy of low-slung stone.
In the garden. In a play area. In the bathroom. Herein, how do you prepare soil for alpine plants? How to plant alpines (things to consider).
Using an old Belfast sink to grow alpines in it for a garden feature. When we have done this we have scuffed the sides and then rendered it will a mixture of sand, cement and peat mixture. Then when its set we have pained on milk to get algae and mosses to grow, this creates the effect of an old stone trough. We normally fill our sinks with John Inness compost with a third more grit or sharp sand mixed in to make a very free draining mixture.
By Holly Crossley published 19 FebruaryHave you ever thought about outdoor sink ideas? They seem to be cropping up everywhere recently, and for good reason. Of course, garden sinks are a great addition to our outdoor kitchen ideas.
Now that there is some warmth in the spring sunshine, I have planted a herb garden. The Belfast sink has been empty over the winter — when we moved house last autumn we emptied out the old herbs which were well past their best, ready for fresh ones this season.
The increasing number of industries and motor vehicles has an impact in the increased concentration of carbondioxide in the atmospheree. This has been causing green house effects global warming. Therefore, the availability is essential for absorbing carbondioxide in large capacity, both in forest areas as well as in large cities. The objective of this research is to measure carbondioxide sink ability of fifteen 15 species of local plants and to determine the effective in absorbing carbondioxide. Leaf of local plants collection samples were collected from the Bogor Botanical Garden.
Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth comes again. I own E. It came to me in a big wooden box from a generous and thoughtful acquaintance who had purchased, and then remodeled, E.