Sunday, June 29, 2014

Clay 4

In the large container, mixed it up again. Waited about 7 min got the nice three-layering so I poured off all but the bottom sand. So now I've got a slurry that will settle some more, the goal now will be to get the water off.

June 29

And in gardening news, the meadowsweet is about done blooming, along with the greater celandine. The day lilies are out.

Pawpaw and walnut seedlings potted up.

Clay 3

In the smaller container, poured off the upper layers. There is already more settling going on. I'm not sure from looking which is the part I want to keep. But you can tell for sure when you stick your hand in it. The bottom is sandy and gritty, that's no good. The next up is smooth muck and I think that is the good part. The top is the flotsam. So the jar on the right is the flotsam

The big jar, I've poured off the ought a screen. The remaining goo is too thick to pour so I added water and poured through first a large screen then the smaller one. It is stinky stuff. The big screen got out some large sticks, but mostly rocks. The smaller screen is catching mostly organic matter.

Now it is put away to let settle

Friday, June 27, 2014

Clay 2

Found some more, this deposit is much blacker in raw form, and has much less sand in it. Here they are side by side as they are settling...

5lbs raw with 6lbs water added. Also added a little more water to the big one it is now 24lbs total


So not having enough projects, I'm experimenting with clay mining and processing. There is a spot in the river that has a deposit of grayish material that caught my eye when we moved it but I never did anything with. So this is my first target. However when I went to grab some, the rushing water took much of it away. The solution to that problem is a casson. On the opposite shore there was a length of 12" PVC pipe that had washed up during a storm. I cut a length of that to serve and was able to extract the first batch of about 12 lbs. it is dirty muddy stuff, full of sand and organic material. The water inside the casson quickly clouded so I had to pull it out by hand, feeling for the slippery clay. Once the raw material is extracted, it needs to be refined as it is full of sticks sand rocks which are not wanted in the final product. One way to do this is to thoroughly dry the clay, pulverize it and sift it. This is a very laborious process and you lose a portion of the material that way. Another way is the water extraction process. I'm following these instructions I've added a bunch of water (to 22.5 lbs) and have broken up all the lumps. Now to let it settle for a bit. It's already starting to separate...

Thursday, June 26, 2014


Not known to medieval Europe, it's too interesting to pass up. North America's largest native fruit. Ray hull had some coming up around his, and made me an offer I couldn't refuse. So Wednesday I went and dug up some suckers. I put a couple directly in the ground and a few in a tub under the deck as a sort of nursery or impyard. Hopefully some will survive...

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Status Sunday 23jun

After a week in the west and Caid, the weeds have gone wild. Here's an in-progress of the recovery process. Cheated a bit with the lawn mower, but all around the back has to be by hand

Tuesday, June 10, 2014


In the mint box, acorns, some sort of pea, a rose hip, and calendula

Monday, June 9, 2014

Six-board chests

Ubiquitous containers of the Middle Ages
Used by all from kings to pages
To store to carry or sit upon
You should not be, without one

Sunday, June 8, 2014

A shrubbery!

I am a shrubbist. Today I whacked down the hedgerow and trimmed the lilac and azaleas

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Planted today

The so-called Portuguese kale which seems to be to be very much like coleworts, 3 kinds of tomato, Ramapithecus, brandy wine and beefmaster. A pepper that Tony insisted I try, cukes, rosemary and parsley.