Episode-1420- Listener Calls for 9-5-14 — 24 Comments

  1. You can coppice Christmas trees if you leave some brows at the bottom. Then select a main leader the next year. Once you have 10 or so trees you would always have Christmas trees.

    Penny saved is a tax free penny earned.

  2. I think there could be a market for renting live trees as well. The customer could pay a deposit that matches the sales price of the tree and gets the deposit back privided they return a healthy tree within a set time.

  3. Also on the Christmas trees – if you sell cut trees, allow customers to bring them back to you after Christmas. You can shred them and use them for mulch (for your own use or for sale), use them in hugel beds, etc.
    At least in my area, people don’t seem to know what to do with their trees after Christmas. Problem = solution.

    • I was surprised he didn’t say that because i kept thinking it. But I’ll say that this will “lock you in more” to doing direct to consumer sales, not necessarily the best way of doing it, but it can certainly provide you some side income in the winter.

      You could also literally just throw it down as rough mulch under a forest canopy.

  4. Could not agree with you more on 30 year versus 15 year.

    This is the facts. A lending institution giving a person a 30 year mortgage at a fixed rate, is first and foremost, an unprecedented thing. Combine that withe the fact that interest rates are at stupid lows, makes it even more insane. I won’t make a huge post out of it explaining multi-decade changes and how extending an end consumer debt for 30 years is eye poppingly ridiculous, but it is.

    Terrible for the banks, great for us for exactly the reasons Jack and the caller stated. What we do right now for debt repayment is every 4 months we make a “mega payment”. We put to the side each and every month a specific amount of money that goes towards that. That is our slush fund if “shit ever hits the fan” during that time period so we’ll have built up additional capital we can turn to if one of us lost a job, or we needed 8-10k in a flash. (No harm, no foul if we use it). We have never had to use it yet, but its nice having that kind of a buffer.

    You do it every 4 months so the balance is still reasonable. Dropping like 30k once a year seems like a bad idea. The interest is really just the cost of being able to keep YOUR OWN MONEY and doing what you will with it. I’ve crunched the numbers and have asked myself is it worth keeping (as an example) 8000 dollars for 4 months or 200 bucks. For me, it is almost always worth it.

    We are finishing paying of all consumer level debt and are looking to the future. The option is “keep going the same path” with the ability to pay off the house in I think 4 years maybe it was 5. We’ve deciding to decrease our expenses for the opportunity of increasing revenues. That will make the much bigger impact in our lives than paying off the house.

  5. No, no Jack, you can’t legislate lightning. What you do is make it illegal for un-licensed people to be outside when there’s a storm. They could be called Stormwalkers. Except that doesn’t emphasize the danger they put themselves in when going out in a storm, they’re real troopers for doing that. So we should call them Stormtroopers.. I think we’re on to something here.

  6. I can highly recommend the Amazen Products Smoke Maze. I use mine as Todd originally designed it for, inside a Masterbuilt Electric Smoker. I do hot and cold smoking with the Amzen as the only smoke source.

    • Good to hear, if you have any connection with those guys I’d be interesting in discussing the MSB with them.

  7. Jack, thanks for answering my question. That was exactly what I was hoping for. Just was curious what you’d say was a good way to integrate pine trees into agro-forestry farm as a way to add another product that can be sold to customers and keep them coming back to you.

  8. I just purchased raw land at the end of last year. I could only get a 10 year note. Boy was I surprised. I went ahead and bought it, but wow. I’m not trying to build a house for cash as I go. Does anyone know a good free website that shows how to do plumbing from scratch? I have to pass anair pressure test and have no idea how to do it.

  9. On Cattle’s pasture preference: Jack was on the right track with his answer. There is a device called a brix refractometer that can be used to measure the relative sugar content of any solution.
    I suggest using it to sample your pasture. The residual effect of some fertilizers can make the grass sour. This can be corrected through natural treatments, such as compost teas. (

    Again Jack was on the right track, it could be as simple as shade.

    If anyone wants to really geek out on some cutting edge grass fed beef breeding and grazing systems check out this series of videos:

    Happy Grazing,
    A Virginian Grass Farmer

  10. On Christmas trees. I was thinking rent the 3 ft tree in a pot, have them bring back after Xmas, then plant on your property. Let it grow 3 more feet and sell as a cut Xmas tree. Get paid twice on one tree.