Saturday, 16 March 2013

Evolution of 3D Printing

3D printing, that amazing technology that has recently grasped the media's attention, evoking comparisons to Star Trek's 'replicator' that could assemble any known object out of its basic molecules. Behind all the hype, what can it do, and will it really change our world?

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Winter Finishing Touches on a Windbreak

So, for a well-overdue update of what's happened this winter of 2012 to '13, some of the useful things I learned, whether hard lessons or delightful ones, are as follows:
While I saw most of the annual plants that I put out demolished either by slugs or sheep, and only got a few halfway-decent fruit from Alpine Strawberries in their first year of planting, the only significant food crop that I was able to grow in spite of all that and the mostly unfettered hard winds came from a very unexpected place. A bunch of radish seeds that I had sowed on compost mostly next to a plum tree and a few other spots were taking off very healthily.
I had mistaken them for turnip plants at the start of autumn when they brought out lots of pink flowers, but upon pulling one out to thin them down, I discovered that not only were they radishes, but the root growth was utterly terrible, no larger than a single chick pea and very woody by the time the plant was in flower, so I left them to self-seed, until I got this surprise as their flowers fruited...
It turns out that radishes grow not only an edible root crop, but also some tasty little seed pods (only roughly similar pea pods in shape), which were very nice when sliced into salads.
See the root of the plant that I plucked these off of; it was tiny in proportion to the above-ground part of this plant, although I shouldn't really be surprised when growing root crops in rocky soil.