Episode-2265- Listener Feedback for 8-6-18 — 14 Comments

  1. On the Walpini Greenhouse concept, I think there’s more to it than the posts on Mother Earth News and the like would indicate. I remembered an article a long while back on Chinese Greenhouses, which are essentially the same thing as a walpini, just by another name. They are used extensively, by all accounts.

    General into from low tech magazine:

    Research on them:

  2. I took a different route for poison ivy.  I’m here in NC, it may be worse here than you are familiar with.  Poison ivy vines can often be several inches thick in diameter.  What I have done is chop them off at the bottom during the winter when it will be less likely they will spray and of course dress appropriately.  That’s the easy part.

    Now poison ivy around here, definitely crawls.  And it will spread out all over the place now that it has that nice root structure and you cut off the top in the tree.  I’ve had areas as large as 10×10 yards.  Manually pulling that out isn’t going to work.  There’s too much of it.  At all other times I’m against herbicide, but as you implied last time you had this question, sometimes the danger of poison ivy is great enough that more serious action is required.  During the summer when it is growing I’ve used frontline as topically as possible.  It has been 3 years now on 5.5 acres and I’ve got at least 70-80% of it.  And I haven’t gotten any rashes since last year.  Rather than the 5-7 times I normally experience.  For me, this stuff is very dangerous and around here. It literally grows like kudzu.

  3. You basically nailed it on the subsidization. The power company gets to earn a return on the capital investment. They are effectively using the customer cost ($1500) as an equity issue.

    • PS – flew over Azle as I listened to that segment. Too bad I’m not overnighting here… #beerforMSB

  4. The straw ban is completely ridiculous. Banning straws won’t get rid of the plastics problem. Having a viable alternative to plastic and promoting it would; even providing incentives at first if a ‘feel good’ campaign doesn’t work (for example with the edible utensils and plates).

    Likewise, the disabled population is among groups of people who greatly need and utilize plastic straws.

    People are so obsessed with laws; making, obeying, enforcing, that they don’t even think critically any more.

  5. Thanks for pointing out how Elon Musk gets some seed money for his businesses (hitching to the government). He has a lot of fanboys, and is heralded as the visionary for humanity’s future (I shudder at the thought), but much of his companies were built and expanded by milking the public sector.

    Don’t get me started on his ridiculous Hyperloop, which only serves to further boost his coffers on the backs of local and federal government (i.e. the public’s money), and does little to nothing to address actual transportation issues.

    • Let me say I am all for sucking money out of the public sector back into the private one, so long as it builds business and creates lots of jobs.  Elon puts the money to work.  I think he is a good/bad guy if that makes sense.

  6. On Poison Ivy…

    Mechanical removal is best.  Herbicides can incur too much collateral damage, unless you specifically inject or drill the toxic gick directly into the ivy vine/root.  But then it’s likely to come back regardless…

    …because you haven’t removed the seed root.

    I don’t subscribe to the war on weeds.  I understand how it serves as a forest reclamation edge plant and why some nature enthusiasts harmoniously refer to it as “Sister Ivy,” foregoing the negative stigma of “poison.”   But when I want it gone its gotta go!

    Suck it up, armor up, get your poison ivy protocols in place, and find the source(s) of your patch and remove them.   Find the source at the base of your tree, cut the vine(s) off at the base.   Find the seed root(s), pull them up, dig them up, put them in a trash bag and get them off your property.  No burning, no chipping, no composting.  Just mechanical removal.

    No matter how often you herbicide it, cut it, pull it, it will always come back if it has had time to develop a hardy seed root.  Find it and remove it.  All of it; leaves, runners, roots.  Then you can put more desirable niche plants in its place like an english ivy, or akebia vine, or schiszandra berry, wild grape, how bout ground nut, or just let the virginia creeper come in and take its place.

  7. My husband used an interesting approach with some poison ivy that had climbed our house and had grown inside an enclosed porch.  He gave it a “vinegar IV”.


    Basically, what he did was this.  He took a quart Powerade bottle and filled it with vinegar.  He drilled two holes in the lid.  Then, he cut the poison ivy vine near the ground and stuck each cut end into the two holes he’d drilled in the lid.  He used some low-temp hot glue to seal the stems into the bottle.  It killed everything, and it hasn’t ocme back.

  8. First..  While I think it is awesome that Sarah and Robert have had success with just digging it up…  but I have to wonder..   how big were the vines they were dealing with?  I’m talking about 3-6 inches in diameter.  And chopping them off first and then poisoning the smaller plants spreading out from there in areas of 100 square yards or so.  Growing all around and under roots of other “good” trees.  How would you dig up that without killing the trees?  Are you guys dealing with the same situation and I’m just thinking it would be impossible without real understanding?

    My family come from northern Indiana and I don’t remember the poison ivy being all that big up there.

    Regardless…  I started last year’s winter with the chopping and after poisoning the spreaders that summer … nothing has returned.  I appreciate the input.  Thanks.

  9. Four inch poison ivy vine is the largest diameter I’ve had to deal with on our property; attached to a tree close to the house.  Granted, they’re not all like that, but it’s up here.  Cutting it off in the colder months is right on, but I just don’t choose to use industrial toxins on our property to landscape.

    The vinegar IV sounds intriguing but not sure how that would apply to a patch growing in among our blackberries.

    I have an inch and a half diameter vine growing into the bark of a tree I cut off in two places, and it still has found a way to grow back on the tree.  Mother nature persistently continues to amaze me.

    I’m not suggesting mechanical removal in one afternoon is a panacea.  It’s merely a technique in an overall removal strategy over time I apply in our zones 1,2, and 3 to a degree.  Other than that, zone 4?  Who cares, leave it be.

    If you choose to topically herbicide it, you might minimize it’s spread back into your area of concern but it’s likely to just spread elsewhere depending on it’s seed root.  Not to mention the roots are still in the ground and there is definitely urushiol in those roots.  Personally, I’m not a fan of catching a rash from PI roots when planting trees while the nearest identifiable leaf is twenty feet away.  That is why my best option is to systematically remove it from the property persistently over time.

    To each their own.

  10. One of my college teachers, IIRC, had a relative who was working on manufacturing the chemical weapons that would have been used in the invasion of mainland Japan.

    Apparently, he was relieved when the nuclear bombs were dropped and Japan surrendered, because if the invasion had been carried out thousands and thousands would have died because of weapons he had made.

    I remembered that today, and thought of how an execution by firing squad would have one rifle loaded with blanks, so each soldier could think maybe I was the one with the blanks, I didn’t kill him. The nuclear bombs were terrible, but for some others it was kind of like a “conscience bullet” – they were willing to cause death, but they preferred to not actually be the ones to do it.

    (I don’t know if that made sense, it’s late.)

  11. There was a guy on this podcast talking about moving to Georgia from NJ. Please look at the Walking to Freedom forum for Georgia, this forum is not very active, but there may be some advise for those looking to move here.

    Another great show Jack! Thank you!!