Welcome to Comstock Seed's new blog. We specialize in Native Seed acquisition and consultation. If you'd like to visit our website, please go to http://www.comstockseed.com/ This blog will cover exciting things that happen on the farm, even if they are not seed related. Enjoy!

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Friday, December 3, 2010

We put the babies back into the living room terrerium for their second winter. Unlike last year when they were out every day trotting around, they sleep all the time this winter. When they do come out, they tend to drink and go back to sleep. Cute huh? Stay tuned; Ed

We added 18 inches of topsoil and drip lines under the pv array. We basically neglected this area all summer but the shade allowed the vegies to thrive during the hot summer. A positive note on the pv system... Our actual payback on the system slowed during the recession as we were not able to maimize our tax deductions and take all the allowable depreciation. Recently though, we noticed we still had a significant suplus in electrical production so we converted the house water heater from propane to electricity. Our annual propane bill will probably drop from $1300 to $400! We'll know soon enough but this savings will shorten the payback period on our initial investment. Stay tuned; Ed

By late summer, we had quite the jungle on our hands. The netting was put up to protect the tomatoes from magpies. Both magpies and ground rodents moved into the garden as the hoophouse provided protection from the hawks allowing this bird pest problem. We also had a white fly infestation late summer. Production was successful through the fall and lasted for a month past the first freezes. The hoophouse worked well extending the harvest for an extra month. We'll see how well it works next spring. Stay tuned; Ed

This foundation detail on the hoophouse shows the rigid styrofoam that we buried 18 inches down into the ground. We are hoping this helps to keep the cold out as well as prevent rodents from getting in. You can also see the track that the plastic will attach to and, flashing over the edge of the styrofoam for protection from shovels. Stay tuned; Ed

Once the framing was up, we promptly added 30% shade cloth across the top. During the summer, it was quite pleasant in the hoophouse. You can see the ends framed in and we will not finish the plastic until the fall chills. Stay tuned; Ed

Then, the concrete arrived; three trucks came; two hours and 20 yards later, it was all finished. Nothing will now blow away in the wind. Two days later, winter began with a succession of snow storms. Stay tuned; Ed

This image shows the steel anchors that will be attached to the 8 by 8 wood beams. We used cinder block columns for most of these anchor spots as they were wider than the styrofoam block. Stay tuned; Ed

After the footings dried, we layed out the styrofoam block and added rebar to the top edge. We spraypainted the outside with a tan water based paint to slow down the uv exposure. These styrofoam blocks have a very high r value and will help the house to retain heat. Stay tuned; Ed

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Welcome back; it's now December and we occassionally leave a warming light on in the coop as we think this keeps the egg production rolling. We average 2-3 eggs per day with our four layers. Once the temperatures dropped to single digits, the hoop house froze out and we have been bringing swiss chard plants over to the coop. The ladies dig right in. Who knows, maybe we will get green eggs! We recently had an invasion of Starlings and they were eating all the chicken feed so we installed netting above the coop and that seems to have done the trick. Cheerios; Ed