The Real Know How

How-Tos, Videos, Tutorials — Ramping Up for the 21st Century

Archive for the category “california”

Antelope Valley Inexpensive BoxBike Build

A boxbike (bakfiets) is a kind of cargo bike popularized in the Netherlands. They can be a really useful way to get around — and to move your stuff around – but they are also very expensive to buy (prices are in the thousands).

Here’s an inexpensive boxbike build tutorial by a member of the High Desert Cyclists Club of Antelope Valley, California:

S/he writes “I started this over two weeks ago and spent $50 total [my emphasis]. It took 2 complete bikes and one old long-john project bike to complete it. Many parts were re-purposed. Cantilever brake bosses were used for the steering linkage along with go-kart heim joints.”

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Homemade Sour Cream! How to Make Creme Fraiche

Chef John (in San Francisco) of foodwishes shows us how he makes sour cream/creme fraiche.

Very straightforward – The ingredients are cream and cultured buttermilk at room temperature (no heating necessary, though the culturing will go faster the hotter the environment).

Her Majesty’s Secret Beekeeper and Urban Beekeeping

“Bryon Waibel runs what he believes is the world’s only urban beekeeping store [in San Francisco]. It’s called Her Majesty’s Secret Beekeeper and Waibel, who uses the handle 006, does seem to believe that he/ the store/ urban beekeepers are serving a cause.”

Growing Rice

A look at the Lundberg Family Farms’ rice growing operation in California. I had no idea that they sow rice from the air.

On the Isbell Family Rice Farm in Arkansas they grow a Japanese variety of rice called Koshihikari for export to that country.

Christian Richard, a rice farmer in Louisiana balances growing rice and raising crayfish.

Cultured Pickling

“Heres the clichĂ©: Alex Hozven craved pickles when she was pregnant with her first son, 12 years ago. And the twist: She started her own pickling business. The Cultured Pickle Shop sells pickles ranging from classic sauerkrauts to unusual kimchees and Kombuchas—way beyond the sour dill. But its the experiments, like the mysterious nuka pot or pickled blood oranges, that really get Hozven excited. Theres plenty of zing, zest, pow in all her pickles, though.”

Alex’s shop is in Berkeley, California.

Seaweed Harvesters

“Meet John and Barbara Stephens-Lewallen: They harvest seaweed. Operators of the Mendocino Sea Vegetable Company in Philo, California, the Stephens-Lewallens are farmers/fishermen of another stripe. Their catch includes bladderwrack, sea lettuce, kombu, and nori.”

Taking Action – A Greywater Install

Taking Action: A Greywater Install from Luke Brummer on Vimeo.

Farming Helping to Revitalize Depressed West Oakland, California

This video looks at the decline of West Oakland, California and how the community has started to bounce back in part through community and backyard gardening initiatives. The video looks specifically at the work that non-profit City Slicker Farms has been doing in the community.

Water on Your Land: Conserving, Directing, Collecting and Storing It

Loren Luyendyk from Santa Barbara Organics talks about water.

Topics:

– How you can use swales to redirect water on your property and also to encourage water that might otherwise flow away, taking topsoil with it to sink into the soil.

– Mulching to help retain water in the soil.

– Collecting rain water and storing it in tanks, in plants on your land and in manmade ponds

– Greywater – Use water more than once. Really easy set-ups and more complicated ones.

– Blackwater (sewage) – Treating the sewage with vegetation. Gives a reed bed example,

– Flowforms to oxygenate water

Introduction to Permaculture Part 2: Water from sbpermaculture on Vimeo.

Graywater Systems for Your Garden

This is a great talk by Laura Allen (here walking us through her home humanure system) and Gregory Bullock about setting up a home graywater system.

“Greywater (water that comes from sinks, showers, and washing machines) turns wasterwater and its nutrients into irrigation water, saving time, money, and fresh drinking water. Whats more plants love it, especially fruit trees, berries and vines. Last year California rewrote its greywater code, making simple greywater reuse legal and affordable. Learn the why and hows of greywater reuse, and how to transform your household plumbing into a greywater irrigation system.”

They are in California so some of the impacts, positive and negative, that they talk about here focus on that state, but the issues are similar everywhere.

The talk covers really important Dos and Don’ts. Some topics mulch and mulch basins as filters, choosing good soaps and cleaners to use in your home if you are going to set up a graywater system, how to set up plumbing for the system (they look at a system that uses the pump on the washing machine as its driver), costs, types of crops it is suitable to irrigate (apparently root crops are out but it’s fine for “fruit” and leaf crops.

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