Monthly Archives: December 2012

Merry Christmas to One and All

Merry Christmas everyone  hope you all are having a great day. We had our Xmas with our daughter and her husband last night on Christmas Eve because my lovely wife has to work today.  We (my wife and I ) will have our Christmas tonight when she gets off work. She is ok with it it allows the younger nurses with families with young kids to be there with them today.

Last night we had what has become a Christmas Eve tradition, tamales .

We made a few tamales for Christmas Eve

We made a few tamales for Christmas Eve

Here is Christmas Eve diner ...we had a good time.....and way to much food.

Here is Christmas Eve diner …we had a good time…..and way to much food.

Sorry that one is so small My daughter took this and I copied it from her face book page.

Here was a surprise pulled this yesterday morning,so it is my Christmas Eve Carrot.

Right out of the ground.

Right out of the ground.

Cleaned up , this is some of the carrots I planted in my Rosemary bush Barrel

Cleaned up , this is some of the carrots I planted in my Rosemary bush Barrel

Here is our Tree this year LOL Sharon thought it would be cute. Since she had to work today and all the kids have move out.

A good year presents pile as tall as the tree...LOL

A good year presents pile as tall as the tree…LOL

And this is great Tamales for Christmas Breakfast.xmas breakfast

And cant for get the furry kids

Bella in her party dress.

Bella in her party dress.

Rowdy Cat  as Santa Kitty

Rowdy Cat as Santa Kitty

And what would Christmas be with out PK the Kitty Grinch.

And what would Christmas be with out PK the Kitty Grinch.

So From Our House To Yours Have A Very Merry Christmas And A Happy New Year.


Ready for Fish

IMG_0018I have worked out most of the bugs I believe , and I am about ready to get the fish. I am planning on building a water heater using compost as the heat source, so that I can raise Talapia . But for now I am going to start with blue gill. I had a to do some work  getting the timing down on the two pumps. Ended up getting a different timer to run the pump for the grow beds. Now the system is running well. I did water checks the other day and all thee readings were in the proper ranges. I will go out and catch the blue gill so if there is a problem it wont be with a tank of fish that cost me very  much.

IMG_0023As you can see my celery has not bounced back from the transplant yet. This is the celery I planted the end of from store bought . It has done well since early in the summer we I put it in the other system. We have eaten off it for quite awhile.  Hopefully , now that the timing  is worked out it will come back.

IMG_0019IMG_0020IMG_0021IMG_0022  I added some tomato that I got from the volunteer plant I have coming up in one of the cinder blocks at the base of the Green House. This is also the strawberry that was in the first system.

IMG_0024IMG_0025IMG_0026IMG_0027 These are cayenne peppers that came out of the garden and a Coffer Lime tree. I am over wintering in the GH. The frog is just cool…

IMG_0028Here is the volunteer tomato I have it tied up with some red tape going to see how big it gets. It already has blooms so we should have some hot house tomatoes soon.

IMG_0029My succulent balls are in here also I have to do some work with them once I get the benches built. That is my Avocado  tree it is also over wintering.

IMG_0030One of the changes I made was to run the return line from the grow beds to the drum that has the pump in it. The two are tied together (see front bottom ) but it pumps out faster than they equalize. So this way the one with the pump fills faster.

IMG_0031This is how I first tried but it didn’t work, so got another timer like the one with the multiple sockets. So this is how it looks now.IMG_0051IMG_0052

IMG_0041I have also move all the tomatoes into the one bed.IMG_0050Here you can see that the peppers are still bearing new fruit,  this is the middle of December here in NC and we have had several frosts . I still don’t have any heat in the GH but it stays above 50 F.

So now I need to find some time to go fishing and catch some gills. hopefully soon.

From my family to all of yours Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

The Gravel Is In The Grow Beds!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Well that is the good news. I got the plumbing done, and the pump in to lift the water up hill to the grow beds. I also got the gravel in the beds. Most of it came from the first system , I took one half of it apart and reused that gravel, I hope it will still have the Biological filter and speed up the cycling process so I can get the fish in the tank. Like I said that was the good news.


As you can see the Bell Syphons have been pulled out of the grow beds. They were not working and I decided to go another way . So the bad news was I had the gravel in the beds, now I had to take it all out again.


I decided to try laying a water hose connected to the out let and protected that with a corrugated pipe.



Well when I tested this it did not syphons as fast as I wanted it to. The problem seems to be the height of the outlet on the barrel, I use the bung hole.  Also the drain going to the holding tank was bigger than the hose so the that didn’t help.  So I went with just a simple elbow that syphons from the bottom of the bed.

Syphon drawing

This is a drawing to show what I ended up with. I didn’t get any pictures of this before I covered it up with the gravel. Basically you see the pick up tube coming in the barrel, the small gravel guard goes around this and the large gravel guard goes over all of it. I can watch the water rise in the large tube, to adjust the in flow.