Sunday, 26 April 2009

Sunny Delight

A couple of weeks ago I installed this solar PV panel on my eco-shed. Buster here provides the scale. He also looks slightly guilty, although I haven't found out why yet. It's a 30w monocrystalline panel from these guys. It's transformed the whole eco-shed thing. The difference is amazing. We can barely keep up with it. We've been charging everything: batteries; laptops; phones. It seems to charge faster than we can use it. Having said that, it's turned the shed into what I wanted: a normal room that we can use whenever. This Friday my wife used it for a full working day. I used it all morning today. Doesn't matter if it's windy or not. Wind just means you can do more stuff! I'm delighted.

My wife said, fairly enough, it's not eco if I keep buying stuff. She's right of course. I've almost finished now. I just need to make a workbench for woodwork and fit some guttering for rainwater capture (for the veg patch) and I'll stop buying shed stuff.

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Coffee Slug Bugger

I'm not the world's best gardener. Far from it. The neighbours think I'm cultivating dandelions. I think part of the problem is that I'm time-poor so I tend to binge-garden. I planted a whole load of seeds in seed trays. When they started to come up I removed the propagator lids and the slugs had 'em. I hate slugs. No, not slugs, I hate what they do. Love the slug, hate the crime.

So I've been looking for an organic way of banishing them from my veg patch. I've tried taping copper tape round the sides of the raised beds. Last year I did slug patrol every night with a torch. It worked but was a bit labour intensive.

But now I've heard that coffee grounds work. But I don't have real coffee very often. Starbucks give away coffee grounds by the bucketload, free, fair play to them. So I got a few packets and I've sprinkled it all around the lettuce and radish seedlings. Will it work? Is this the end of slug patrol?