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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7520 on: July 14, 2019, 02:25:49 am »
Ok, I did have another look at the posts this evening. They ARE NOT perfectly aligned.  :eek7:

Problem is that the post that is not right is the post I sank extra-deep (almost 5 feet deep) to support the weight of the gate. Imma not gonna change it. It's gonna fuck with my OCD, but digging it up and re-planting it will fuck with my body more.  :deal:

I guess I can live with it  :lol8:

So... move the other shorter one to line up with the long one.  ;D
Alignment doesn't always mean vertical, horizontal and straight.
It means matching.

(PS - I've been scarce here lately. Just packed off my BIL,SIL and nephews back to Charlotte, NC)

I hear you, but today I installed some planks across the tops of the posts to act as shelves for pot plants etc, and took this pic from the same angle as the first pic. It's not nearly so bad, and I have accepted the "skewness" as part of it's character  :biggrin:  :peepwall:
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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7521 on: July 14, 2019, 02:27:46 am »
I look at that fence of yours Mr. Zog and in my mind's eye I see me taking lots of vultarens if I had to build it.  :lol8: That's quite labour intensive, very well done.  :thumleft:

Ja OomD, it's very labour intensive. Especially in the heat and humidity of the Florida summer  :o

I'm always amazed at the pace at which you manage to get things done, your boss must love you.

He seems to want to keep me around  :peepwall:  :thumleft:
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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7522 on: July 14, 2019, 02:34:14 am »
Update time... with pics  :lol8:

This weekend I am off duty, no call-outs for me  8)

So I woke up at 6:00 with the dogs nagging to go out. I finally relented and got up to let them out at 6:45 and made a pot of coffee. Then I just sat on the couch in the Florida room and enjoyed not HAVING to get dressed and do stuff... for a while. But eventually at around 8 I did get my ass into gear and had a shower and took myself off to Home Depot for some supplies. I needed 6 fencing planks to make the shelf I posted the pic of just above around the inside perimeter of the little fence I built last weekend. I also needed some 2,5 inch carriage screws.

You see today I wanted to build the gate for the fence on the west side of the house, where I had left the space for specifically when I built the fence back in March. Remember these pics?
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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7523 on: July 14, 2019, 02:44:50 am »
Well, I had found a pair of strong hinges in my "hinges and associated stuff" box in my workshop, as well as a deadbolt. So all I needed were the heavy duty screws to attach the hinges.

Back home I measured, measured again, and cut down some 2x4's and lapped all the ends for assembly. This took some time, especially making the multiple cuts with my mitre saw to get the lap joints done. Then I assembled the frame for the gate, taking special care to get it perfectly square. I also added a diagonal brace to help stop the heavy gate sagging over time.

Then I removed the section of the front fence where the gate needed to go, and cut the fence planks a bit shorter, as I had left them long, digging them into the ground to stop the dogs digging down under the fence.

Finally I screwed the first two planks to the frame so that I could attach the hinges, hung the gate, and attached the rest of the planks. And fitted the deadbolt to keep it closed.

All that is visible from the outside are the two hinges, but from the inside you can see the framework and the colours of the planks where they were attached to the temporary cross braces. Tomorrow I'll dig in a piece of offcut 4x4 fence post horizontally under the gate to thwart any digging attempts  :lol8:

And at some stage in the near future I'll make and install two 2x4 cross beams that just drop into place to make sure that the gate never blows open, even during a hurricane.

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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7524 on: July 14, 2019, 02:50:01 am »
Remember the Baobab tree that had just started sprouting new leaves just a month ago?

Well today I noted that it had grown around 10 inches (20 cm) already!!! It certainly seems to like it here  :biggrin:

first pic is the one I posted last month, the next two show the growth in the last month. Note the fresh green stick above the old brown stick  :deal:  :thumleft:
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Offline Fudmucker

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7525 on: July 14, 2019, 07:29:46 am »
You mean to make a long term impact in the USA, Zog.
A baobab will way outlive you... and Trump.
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Offline tok-tokkie

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7526 on: July 14, 2019, 09:46:21 am »
I love that boabab.  The idea of them now establishing themselves in Florida tickles me.  How did it get there - as a seed or seedling?
 

Offline Mrs. Zog

Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7527 on: July 14, 2019, 04:39:57 pm »
I love that boabab.  The idea of them now establishing themselves in Florida tickles me.  How did it get there - as a seed or seedling?

I grew it from seed shortly after we arrived here.  ;)
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Offline wobbler

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7528 on: July 15, 2019, 01:34:18 am »
And even the gate gets made with a 'Z' for Zog!
« Last Edit: July 15, 2019, 10:30:32 pm by wobbler »
 

Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7529 on: July 15, 2019, 03:24:19 am »
And even the gate gets makes with a 'Z' for Zog!

so it does!  O0  :imaposer:
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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7530 on: July 15, 2019, 03:47:19 am »
Today was a busy Sunday for me.

I was up on the roof of the Florida room early, before the sun warmed up. I still had a leak, and I'm determined to fix it. Not a big leak, just a few drops when it rains really hard. I found that the strips of repair stuff I used previously had a layer of plastic on the top that gets brittle in the sun and causes the bitumen layer underneath to lift up over the uneven surfaces of the screw heads. So I carefully cut away the plastic layer, peeling it off, until just the bitumen layer remained. Then I used another similar type of strip over the first layer of bitumen. Difference is this type has a foil type backing layer that conforms better. Hears to hoping it's fixed now...  :sip:

Then I added some more screws to side of the fence on the west and looped some more wire around the screws to create a network for the creeper to be trained to. The creeper is really taking off now and we need to train it right from the start.

Next up I planted a little guava tree that Mrs Zog had bought from the grocery store. The tag says it needs full sun, and can get to 20 feet tall. So I chose a spot where it will get as much sun as possible, and where it can grow vertically without getting in the power lines etc. I reused a planting ring jobbie from a strelitzia that didn't make it to keep the grass out of the roots.

I took my table saw outside of the shed and ripped three 2x4's into 1x1's. I will use them to frame the shelves that I want to make in my wardrobe.

A quick dip in the inflatable plastic pool to cool off (the water temp in there was 30 deg  :biggrin: ) and then I grabbed the weed eater and the mower. Finished off with the leaf blower to get rid of most of the grass cuttings and the sunflower seed shells under the trees where the squirrels eat. I also used the weed eater to cut back the long grass at the front side of the house where the water meter is. Just in case... the water meter also has the shut-off valve inside it, just in case of a broken pipe or something similar one day. Too often I see people who have a bad leak at their house and the water meter is buried under the lawn and it takes hours of probing to find it, dig it up, dig the sand out of it so that I can shut the water off and repair the leak.

When we opened up the boxes that contained the tool boxes that the boss bought for the counter at the new shop they had some nice sheets of polystyrene in them to protect the tool boxes. I "scored" the polystyrene and brought it home, I had a plan with it. This afternoon I cut the sheets to size (using the back of a hacksaw blade, not too much mess) and slotted them into the roof of my workshop. The steel/tin roof gets direct sun most of the day and it gets seriously hot inside there. I had previously found some "think pink - type" insulation in the roof, but only enough for around 1/4 of the roof, which I installed and put some hardboard up as a ceiling to keep it in place.

The polystyrene was enough to do about another half of the roof, I just secured the sheets between the roof beams with some horizontal screws for now. I'll have some off cuts from the framing of the shelves in the wardrobe and I'll use that to properly secure them later. It was hot as hell working under that roof in the sun, but afterwards I could feel that the temp in the workshop had dropped a whole lot already. Worth the effort I think  :biggrin:

Some pics so long...

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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7531 on: July 15, 2019, 03:50:12 am »
Here are the pics of the little guava tree.

And a before and after pic of the banana tree at the west side of the house... it was planted in Feb this year, already getting almost as high as the house roof!
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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7532 on: July 15, 2019, 04:08:31 am »
And to end the weekend off, a tale of amazing bravery.  :sip:

So after I installed the little shelf around the inside edge of the "pee corral" I put the pelican up on the shelf.

The pelican is a statue of a pelican (duh) that is cast from some sort of plastic or something, and is about the size of a Hadeda, much smaller than a real pelican. It was here at the house when we moved in, and until now it has just been standing at the back door of the garage, sometimes getting used as a doorstop to keep the door open, and often getting bumped over. Sammy has seen it a million times...

Until yesterday evening  :sip:

Sammy was in the Florida room and happened to look out of the window and saw the "birdie" sitting on the fence  :eek7:

He had a shit-fit  ::)

Barking and growling, he exited the Florida room via the dog-flap and stood a safe distance away and barked at it. Of course I egged him on, telling him to "catch the birdie!" He is part Ridgeback, and the ridge on his back was fully up, and he entered "stealth mode", leopard crawling towards the birdie, all the while barking and growling very ferociously!

Of course the "birdie" didn't fly away like all other birdies do, and this must have really freaked him out. Slowly, slowly, back legs shaking, stripe up, barking and growling, he crept closer and closer, while I egged him on...

Finally he stretched his neck out as far as he could, and sniffed at the "birdie"...

Eish.

I think it was then that he realized just what it was, and that he had seen it a million times before. He tried to grab the "birdie" and carry it away, but I took it away and put it back on the shelf.

Sammy seemed a bit sheepish after that, but he was a VERY brave boy, and saved us from certain death from the evil birdie of doom!  :deal:


I nearly pissed myself laughing at him, and afterwards wished that I had my phone with me so I could have made a video of the incident...  :imaposer: :imaposer: :imaposer:
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Offline TeeJay

Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7533 on: July 15, 2019, 07:11:15 am »
 :imaposer: :imaposer: :imaposer: thanks for keeping us entertained  :imaposer:
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Offline Fudmucker

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7534 on: July 15, 2019, 08:02:44 am »
 :thumleft: on the re-use of the polystyrene boards there.
To me they are some of the must useful and underrated insulation options around - if your building code permits them.
They do burn and give off some evil gasses.

BTW one of the guys at my shooting club is a nature scientist and told us once that if you want to plant a tree and have it grow well and fast,
you must make the whole B-I-G even if it is just a tiny sapling.  He recommended 1,5x1,5 wide and at least 1m deep. You fill the bottom half the hole with a layer of rottable plant material and top off with well mixed soil and compost.  Once established, the trick was to water the BOTTOM of the hole during the growing season so the roots grow down not out at the top.  They used lengths of PVC tube in opposite corners of the holes to do this.

Using this method at Gauteng Nature Conservation, they had almost no difference after 3-4 years in the height of trees of the same species that were planted at the same time as juveniles of 2 or 3 years still in bags compared to 5-year+ ones in drums. 
So if one is looking for big trees and a small budget, make the hole bigger, prepare the soil better and buy smaller trees from the nursery...

If you don't  want a big soil surrounding the tree in your lawn, put a plastic membrane down about 25-30cm under the lawn where the tree hole was dug and replace the sods.  Water the tree below the membrane.
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Offline Bernoulli

Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7535 on: July 15, 2019, 09:56:34 am »
:thumleft: on the re-use of the polystyrene boards there.
To me they are some of the must useful and underrated insulation options around - if your building code permits them.
They do burn and give off some evil gasses.

BTW one of the guys at my shooting club is a nature scientist and told us once that if you want to plant a tree and have it grow well and fast,
you must make the whole B-I-G even if it is just a tiny sapling.  He recommended 1,5x1,5 wide and at least 1m deep. You fill the bottom half the hole with a layer of rottable plant material and top off with well mixed soil and compost.  Once established, the trick was to water the BOTTOM of the hole during the growing season so the roots grow down not out at the top.  They used lengths of PVC tube in opposite corners of the holes to do this.

Using this method at Gauteng Nature Conservation, they had almost no difference after 3-4 years in the height of trees of the same species that were planted at the same time as juveniles of 2 or 3 years still in bags compared to 5-year+ ones in drums. 
So if one is looking for big trees and a small budget, make the hole bigger, prepare the soil better and buy smaller trees from the nursery...

If you don't  want a big soil surrounding the tree in your lawn, put a plastic membrane down about 25-30cm under the lawn where the tree hole was dug and replace the sods. Water the tree below the membrane.

I was wondering whether Mr Zog should not be doing this for the Baobab tree. Baobabs are aloes and thus not "built" for the climate in Florida. I suspect it will grow unnaturally fast weakening it's structure in the process and becoming a risk when the hurricanes roll in. Maybe "starve" it  a little using the hidden plastic over the roots and help it grow more naturally. Some tough love for trees :imaposer:   

Offline Mrs. Zog

Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7536 on: July 15, 2019, 05:34:11 pm »
Quote
Baobabs are aloes

Well, not precisely. They are not true aloes, but they are succulents - stem succulents, meaning they store water in the trunk. As far as taxonomy goes, they fall in the Mallow family (Malvaceae), so are closely related to hibiscus.  :o

Also, we have many, many native succulents here in Florida, including aloes. I think it'll do just fine!  :thumleft:

End of botanical nitpicking.
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Offline Mr Zog

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7537 on: July 16, 2019, 02:18:27 am »
Quote
Baobabs are aloes

Well, not precisely. They are not true aloes, but they are succulents - stem succulents, meaning they store water in the trunk. As far as taxonomy goes, they fall in the Mallow family (Malvaceae), so are closely related to hibiscus.  :o

Also, we have many, many native succulents here in Florida, including aloes. I think it'll do just fine!  :thumleft:

End of botanical nitpicking.

  :laughing4:  :laughing4:  :laughing4:

and that my friends, is why I have given up disagreeing or arguing with her...  :peepwall:  :imaposer: :imaposer: :imaposer:
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Offline Ri

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7538 on: July 16, 2019, 06:56:30 am »
Quote
Baobabs are aloes

Well, not precisely. They are not true aloes, but they are succulents - stem succulents, meaning they store water in the trunk. As far as taxonomy goes, they fall in the Mallow family (Malvaceae), so are closely related to hibiscus.  :o

Also, we have many, many native succulents here in Florida, including aloes. I think it'll do just fine!  :thumleft:

End of botanical nitpicking.

  :laughing4:  :laughing4:  :laughing4:

and that my friends, is why I have given up disagreeing or arguing with her...  :peepwall:  :imaposer: :imaposer: :imaposer:

Sensible attitude. She obviously knows what she's talking about, so you're only saving your ego a bruising :lamer:
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Offline tok-tokkie

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Re: Life in America - I made the move.
« Reply #7539 on: July 16, 2019, 10:11:18 am »
Quote
Baobabs are aloes

Well, not precisely. They are not true aloes, but they are succulents - stem succulents, meaning they store water in the trunk. As far as taxonomy goes, they fall in the Mallow family (Malvaceae), so are closely related to hibiscus.  :o

Also, we have many, many native succulents here in Florida, including aloes. I think it'll do just fine!  :thumleft:

End of botanical nitpicking.

Most of the oldest ones have recently died.  Linked to climate change crises but difficult to prove.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jun/11/giant-african-baobab-trees-die-suddenly-after-thousands-of-years

So spreading them elsewhere is great.  But I expect the hurricanes will rip them apart.