For a couple of weeks I have been blogging about a lot of random things. I keep talking about the projects that I have in store, but have yet to explain any of them. Today I am going to present to you my top five projects I intend to complete this year. As I have mentioned previously I am trying to save the planet, however, I am doing this at my own pace. I should also mention that I am doing this in my own style. I have never been a fan of preaching to people that are not interested in what I have to say. Instead I have adopted the “look at what I am doing” approach. It seems to be less invasive and at the end of the day I can always look back and see something I have done and be proud of that. My top five projects more than likely will not have an immediate global impact, but they should have an impact on my household and who knows someone else out there might get inspired at the same time.
I will probably not start or finish these in an organized progression, but would you expect anything less from me? So, without further delay I now present you with my top five green neck projects to save the world.
Number one: Build a green house. Last year I built a pergola on the south facing deck and have enjoyed it very much. Part of the reason I did this was to help shade the house a little bit in the summer but still allow sun and heat to enter in the winter. This has helped in the summer, but has not allowed quite as much sun in during the winter as I had hoped. Therefore, it will now be turned into a green house. A green house will help insulate the house in the winter and allow us to grow some of our food during the winter also. This will reduce fossil fuel consumption which will save us money and reduce our carbon footprint just a little bit.
Number two: We will start composting virtually everything organic. The plan is to have a composter near the garden for easy disposal of lawn and garden waste and to start a new worm compost bin. Later I will tell all about my previous worm bins but now is not the right time. Composting will further reduce the waste going out of the house. I have a problem with filling up the land fills with good organic matter. Organic matter usually weighs more than other trash so it also increases the use of fossil fuels hauling it away. If we needed another reason to compost it also will give us back some of the most amazing natural fertilizer that we can than reuse in our garden areas to grow our food.
Number three: I am going to start raising bees. I have been talking about this for a couple of years now and next spring will be the time I take action. I tried to take action last year but did not get very far. I will share that story with you at a later time, but for now just look forward to me having bees next spring. Bees are great pollinators which I will need as we start growing our own food and they will give us some natural honey as well as bees wax that I can use in further greening up the household. Bees are also on the decline so it will be a feel good story for me to give a few thousand of them a safe place to live.
Number four: I am going to design, build and use an aquaponics system. I made one for the aquarium earlier this year (perhaps another future story) and it did not work. I did learn a few things from it and have all the confidence needed to try again. I will fix my small system before going big time, but plan on growing plants and fish in the green house. It is not a true closed system, but it is close. The fish are fed, they produce waste, the plants use the waste for food and then the plants clean the water for the fish. Also, the water in the green house will help to hold the heat inside during the winter which will help maintain a comfortable growing temperature as well as insulate the house which will make my wife happy. See everyone, I am always looking out for my wife!
Number five: I am going to start collecting rain water and will create some barrels. This is not as easy as it sounds, first I have to put up snow guards on the metal roof, then put up gutters and then get some big black barrels to catch the water. The goal of this is to collect the water that is just going towards the foundation anyway and offset my water use in the spring and summer when I can use this water to irrigate my gardens instead of using chlorine filled city water.
Alright, I have put them out there, now follow along this year as I figure out how to make all of these things work. You can be assured that none of these things will get done quickly or with ready made items i have to purchase. I am still a green neck after all!