Search found 463 matches

by contadino
Thu Mar 29, 2007 4:24 am
Forum: Bring back the Goodlife - and other Television and Radio related things
Topic: mushrooms
Replies: 4
Views: 3199

In the agricultural shops here, mushroom kits are next to the seed racks in the shop. They're pretty small packages that contain (I think) the substrate with spores or fibres in it. If I understand it correctly, you layer the substrate on top of other stuff and leave in a warm damp place. You can ke...
by contadino
Thu Mar 29, 2007 4:18 am
Forum: Alternative Energy
Topic: Solar panel with mains plug
Replies: 15
Views: 5451

You would need a battery (car or van battery would do but better using a leisure battery from a caravan shop), otherwise the lights would only work when it was sunny. I think you should start looking for some 12 volt lights. Connect the solar panel to the battery (probably best putting a charge cont...
by contadino
Wed Mar 28, 2007 3:55 pm
Forum: Welcome New People Say Hello
Topic: Self-sufficient in Italy...
Replies: 18
Views: 3904

Oooh, I bet you struggle in the local osterie, don't you? Everyone down here tells me it's pork, pork, and more pork on the menu up there. Although that could be like people from New Jersey thinking that everyone from Florida has a pet alligator. I was a veggie right up until we got to Italy. Now I'...
by contadino
Wed Mar 28, 2007 10:28 am
Forum: 101 Uses For
Topic: 101 ways to deter of invading battalions of ants...
Replies: 5
Views: 2298

There's always the faithful chickens, who'll put a dent in the numbers of ants. However, they might do some damage to your veggies too.
by contadino
Wed Mar 28, 2007 9:58 am
Forum: I read the news today, oh boy.
Topic: No more grants
Replies: 5
Views: 2487

Oh, but 'they' can... http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/Greenhousetax/ Certain local councils are planning to raise council taxes for houses with 'green' upgrades. Quote: There are reports that local councils are considering raising the Council Tax on houses which have eco-friendly improvements such as sol...
by contadino
Wed Mar 28, 2007 9:30 am
Forum: Welcome New People Say Hello
Topic: Self-sufficient in Italy...
Replies: 18
Views: 3904

Thank-you everyone for your warm welcome. Andy, the wind turbine depends on many things (whether we can get net metering, planning permission, demand, etc..) so I could be aiming for anywhere between a 300w or a 2kw turbine. I follow progress and plans from otherpower.com, but am also tempted to buy...
by contadino
Wed Mar 28, 2007 8:58 am
Forum: Allotments, Veg Patches and Container Gardening
Topic: comfrey
Replies: 24
Views: 6646

What a coincidence! I've just received some comfrey seeds from the UK. They came from Chiltern Seeds and I got two types - weed comfrey and Russian Comfrey (Blocking 14). The Russian stuff is very difficult to get to set seed so is less invasive. Both are good for all the purposes suggesting in this...
by contadino
Tue Mar 27, 2007 2:52 pm
Forum: Herbs and Vegetables
Topic: herbs that don't creep
Replies: 16
Views: 4425

Ooh! I forgot some. Laurel or Bay. The flowers are pleasantly whiffy and of course, when 'snapped' the leaves are sublime. Parsley doesn't invade, but doesn't smell of much either. And, rather more dubiously, there's Jasmine. Not a herb as such, but edible and a lovely smell in the evening sun. Citr...
by contadino
Tue Mar 27, 2007 10:22 am
Forum: Welcome New People Say Hello
Topic: Self-sufficient in Italy...
Replies: 18
Views: 3904

Self-sufficient in Italy...

Hi everyone, I'm new to the forum. My wife and I gave up our day jobs to become self-sufficient in southern Italy. We have an olive grove of about 180 trees, a vinyard in an embryonic stage, and several vegetable gardens. Chooks and two dumb dogs are the current extent of our livestock, but we're gr...
by contadino
Tue Mar 27, 2007 10:07 am
Forum: Herbs and Vegetables
Topic: herbs that don't creep
Replies: 16
Views: 4425

Sage, basil, lavender, and rosemary are all that spring to mind for me. I think thyme is pretty well behaved too. Oregano is also a good'un, cos you can cut it and dry it like crazy if it gets out of hand.
by contadino
Tue Mar 27, 2007 10:01 am
Forum: What's in the pot? Recipes and anything about Cooking
Topic: My first attempt at drying
Replies: 10
Views: 2457

To build my solar drier, I took the side panels off an old bedside table and replaced them with flyscreen material, and made a few shelves that slotted in in the same way. It worked for a while, before the wife nicked it for drying cheese in. This summer, a new high speed solar dryer will make an ap...
by contadino
Tue Mar 27, 2007 9:50 am
Forum: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Topic: wine bottle edging?
Replies: 22
Views: 7069

A Slovak family have built an entire house from wine bottles in Roma.

http://www.corriere.it/english/articoli ... mily.shtml
by contadino
Tue Mar 27, 2007 9:39 am
Forum: Fruit and Nuts
Topic: Growing Wheat
Replies: 2
Views: 1498

Hi. I've looked into growing grain this year, not for milling as the flour we buy from the mill is good, but instead for supplementing the chooks and rabbit fodder. I found a good website called Realseeds.co.uk (I think) which explains that the likes of wheat and barley have been bred for mechanical...