Sunday, September 5, 2010

The water in the Sea of Japan is sometimes incredibly Caribbean-like

This August,and September so far, was absolutely blistering, but with little rain. For that I'm thankful. April-July was wetter than normal with 1200mm in that period. (4 feet) We've finally gone under 30C/85F inside the house.
Is that Diamond Head?

The corn harvest topped out at 250 ears, from 450 plants, not bad. It was pretty much on my prediction for 1\2 being successful.

Didn't make it over 300 due to boars/deer/insect damage on the final 2 rows. Recently in the evenings the hamlet resonates with the sounds of radios in the fields, banging on fences, and a few bottle rockets (my contribution). The other day a lone monkey foolishly came down for a daytime glimpse of the now golden rice paddies. Poor little guy was ruthlessly harassed by all. Actually felt sorry for the him, till he comes near my house that is.

Put in 秋じゃが fall potatoes. 3 beds of 30-40 seed spuds. Continuing with the use of double wide rows between raised beds. The few visible remaining corn plants mark the beds used in summer. They will rest and were broadcast seeded with rape. This should act as a green manure for next year's planting.

The solar powered yard lights have been upgraded from compact fluoresent to LED's. This simple but somewhat costly act has extended their range to 60 hours. Of course I waited till the bulbs were on sale. Edison would be proud, a 20 dollar light bulb. The new LED's are 0.11 amps, using less power than the already super efficient CFL's. A very small home could easily be lit with a single PV panel and one battery. Lighting is the easy part of trying to be off grid , but it just got a whole lot simpler. Before, the ultimate in off grid lighting was supposedly propane, I'd say the standard has changed. The bulbs are said to be good for 40,000 hours or about 20 years.