Using Old Potting Soil

Saturday, 3 May 2014, 8:41

I’m emptying/refreshing a bunch of pots this year, and I’ve gotten quite a bit of used potting soil. What should I do with it? I’ve thought of 4 possibilities:

1) Add it to the compost pile. My concern here is that it might “overwhelm” the compost, unless I could find lots of green stuff to add along with it – plus, it’s really going to add more than my current structure can hold.

2) Start a “potting soil compost” bin, holding (mostly) just the potting soil.

3) Get a couple of big garbage cans, dump it in, and use it for later pots or to add to pots that have settled.

4) Add it to raised garden beds.

Are any of these good/bad? Got any other ideas?

Category : Gardening

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McDonald’s New Bacon Clubhouse Burger Judged, Found…

Thursday, 27 March 2014, 14:11

no better than their other burgers, unfortunately. It amazes me how a chain that is synonymous with “burger” has such terrible hamburgers. The basic single hamburger is the best burger on their menu, and that’s because it’s that one with the least burger to it. I can only think of one place where I’ve had a worse hamburger, and that was years ago at a small local chain in south Mississippi which shall remain nameless. I thought maybe McDonald’s had gotten a clue with this:

McDonalds Bacon Clubhouse Burger

I mean, it looks pretty decent, right? Look at the fresh lettuce, those crisp strips of bacon, that glistening gourmet bun!! But alas, the reality was a big hunk of tasteless tomato, limp lettuce, limper bacon, and a bun that was just thicker bread than their normal bun. And a slab of that industrial-tasting McDonald’s beef-like substance. At least the fries were good.

Category : Life, Other Stuff

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Tuesday, 25 March 2014, 11:26

Warm tea at sunrise
Two people watch in silence
The world comes to life

Category : Poetry

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The Wisdom Of The Oak

Saturday, 8 February 2014, 19:58

I’m not one to put stock in things like the Farmer’s Almanac long-range forecasts. I don’t pay attention to which way the wooly bears are crossing the road, or what their stripes look like. In the interest of fairness to the Farmers Almanac, I will admit that they pretty much called this winter:

a decline in solar activity combined with ocean-atmosphere patterns in the Pacific and Atlantic will result in below-normal temperatures and above-normal snowfall during most of the winter across much of the United States.

“This winter is shaping up to be a rough one,” says Janice Stillman, editor of The Old Farmer’s Almanac. “Sweaters and snow shovels should be unpacked early and kept close by throughout the season

I’m not sure they were all that accurate for the western US, I haven’t paid attention.

I’ve mentioned before that overhanging my front yard and house is an enormous red oak, the second-largest in Mississippi I’ve been told. It’s a grand old tree, huge spreading branches and tons of leaves that fall every year around Christmas.

It pretty well dominates the front yard, both in the shade it provides on that side and with its sheer presence. Last fall, I noticed early on that it was dropping tons of acorns. I mean, a tree that size is going to drop lots of acorns, but last fall it was dropping far more than I’d ever seen. I mentioned it to my wife, and to friends. I didn’t really think much about it. I should have paid more attention. According to Farmer’s Almanac and multiple other places, an abundance of acorns is a sign that winter will be cold and snowy. Accuweather says that actually lots of acorns are a result of a hard winter two or three years ago. But our winters have been fairly mild lately, so I’m going with the “lots of acorns forecast a cold winter” theory. Do I really believe this? Well, of course not. It’s just coincidence that a huge number of acorns under that tree last October and November was followed by the coldest winter I can remember in the past 20 years. We’ve had winters where we rarely got below the upper 20s. This year, lows in the teens have been fairly common, and frozen stuff falling from the sky, while never accumulating much in my part of the state, has occurred several times, and south of me has seen a couple of multi-inch accumulations. And there’s another round forecast for next Monday night and Tuesday. So I’m going to just say this: next time the big red oak drops lots of acorns, I’m going to do what preparing I can for winter. Like, for instance, not bothering to overwinter things in my little greenhouse. And not putting off some outdoor chores, like fence repair, that I’ve gotten away with in the past. Next time, I’ll listen to the wisdom of the oak.

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Back Underground

Friday, 17 January 2014, 21:43

Unlike some abandoned places I’ve read about, this one hasn’t been abandoned all that long. But it’s a fascinating story. Apparently the British postal service had its own subway system for about 75 years, used to move mail among processing and sorting stations. The system began operating in 1928, and was used until 2003.

London underground mail train

Exploring the system was apparently at the top of the list for urban explorers in London, and at some point, a group managed to get inside and carried out a pretty thorough exploration – read about it here.

From the brief reading I did, it seems the train carried mail almost exclusively, but there were apparently a few cars for people, although I think not for the public, but for employees. Still, a cool way to move between offices.

Category : Urban Exploration

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