So many projects, so little time

I have a job! It’s been a couple of years since university, but I finally have a job! The details on that aren’t too relevant, but the important thing is: I now have disposable income… I never knew how hampered my projects were until I had cash to splurge. What was it like when y’all had disp-income for the first time?

It’s been a few weeks since I started, and all my old projects started coming back to me one by one. I waited about a month, then splurged on tools to make my mother a big “Table” type raised bed. The tools are still arriving, and I hope to look for the metal next week. I’ve already taken measurements, and I’ll be broadly following the design seen in this video:

After the raised bed, I’ll be turning most of the backyard at the top of the hill into a pen, with cage-wire walls and a bird netting roof (BN because it’s flexible, to allow the bananas to grow and to wrap it around the açaí palm).The purpose of the pen is two-fold: to keep cats out, and to keep pets in. I like the idea of animals having space and a naturalistic environment to feel at home without having them escape or be preyed upon (plus, if they’re few for the size of the pen, no great concerns about waste-management – correct me if I’m wrong in this). The top yard is neither huge nor tiny… should be enough space for a pair of guinea pigs, a red foot tortoise, and some quail. Almost free-range, but not quite. The planting tables will be in there (not sure if they need protection from quails), and at ground level, some forage crops for the animals. Anything that needs protecting will be caged accordingly (be it the blackberry plant, or the Jaboticaba tree trunk from gnawing teeth).

After the pen, I’ll be cutting down the wildling trees in the back hillside, and then I’ll be terracing it for planting. Bananas, Plantains, Mafafos, Yams, Sweet Potatoes, Cassava, the works! At the bottom of the hill, another pen for the chickens, farther away from the house to allow for a slightly greater concentration. My dad wants a rooster, and we all want eggs. :grin:

Back at the top, I’ll be setting up some more Mushroom containers, and in the side yard (which will be part of the pen), I just set up my first worm bins today! Now I’m just waiting on the worms in the mail. I wanna try several species, even if that’s unnecessary. I’m thinking one bin for the European Nightcrawlers (allegedly a slower breeder), and another for Red Wigglers + African Nightcrawlers. Just for the heck of it, I may dump some Whiteworms and Phoenix Worms (BSF) in there for good measure. Biodiverse… The only one I don’t care for is the Indian Blue Worms. I know some people like them, but their habits don’t appeal to me.


I drilled so many side holes to ventilate properly without having to drill the tops (I wanted to keep the rain out. For the two darker bins, I mixed compost with peat moss for the bedding. The third bin (light green) is an experiment in arthropod composting: mainly millipedes (plenty of those here) and isopods; I mixed the compost with hardwood sawdust (hydrated smoker pellets) for that one.

Tomorrow I’ll be fixing up the trellis for the air potatoes, and filling up some tubs to plant them in. One vine is already overdue for trellising:

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Y’all have no idea how hard it’s been trying to avoid an all-out shopping spree for all the fruits I’ve wanted to grow over the years. And then I saw the thread recommending “Queen of the Amazon”…

New tropical fruit vendor

I caved today, and splurged my last eighty bucks. Next check comes Friday. My projects are still ongoing, so I have to budget carefully.

In the meantime, my strawberries (Seascape and Mara Des Bois) have been bearing well now that I’ve stuck ‘em in a raised bed.The tropical heat doesn’t bother ‘em one bit. Also got my first Jaboticaba today (a red hybrid). I’ll be giving it to my mother when she comes home.

Who else is overloaded with projects? How do you handle budgeting concerns?


Hello my friend, how are you? I’m running to complete my project too… but i dout i’m able to finnished it… always knowing new stuff! :grin:


I am well, thank God. I’m climbing out of a rut, and finally feel productive. It feels good! The budget motivates, but it wasn’t necessarily the deciding factor (I was still in a rut for most of that first month).

The projects are never finished, but that’s the fun part! Getting to the next step.

By the way, I do have some extra air potato varieties if you’re still interested.


Just sent a PM

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Where is zonev13A?

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Puerto Rico.


i grow dubia tropical roaches for my chickens in tubs like you got. they eat anything and breed like crazy. the birds love to run them down every few months when i feed them. funny to watch and its pure protien for them.


I’d love to try my hands at roaches! Unfortunately, despite my fascination, I’m too squeamish for most of ‘em. Tiny ones don’t bother me, so Little Kenyans are on my wish list. Hissers seem like they wouldn’t trigger me, but I’ve never seen ‘em in person. Domino roaches look pretty great too.

Isopods are my favorite, particularly the Zebra Pillbugs, but I haven’t been able to get my hands on ‘em.

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dubias are pretty clean. they are a forest roach that eats anything that falls on the forest floor. only about a inch long. nothing like the german roaches. hell some countries eat them fried. :wink:


It’s not a hygiene thing for me, it’s a creepy crawly thing. I’ve loved bugs all my life, but for some reason many of them trigger my instincts to very strong degrees. It’s ironic to be sure, but other than calculatedly facing my fears, I don’t know how I could turn it off.


Where are you in PR? I used to live there.


I’m in Villalba, born and raised. Not a particularly high region like Vista Alegre or Toro Negro though, just a suburb a short distance from town. My usual haunts are all there, plus Juana Diaz, Ponce, and I occasionally visit Caguas.

Where did you used to live?


Here’s a municipal map, for anyone interested:


I worked in Humacao, but lived between Naguabo and the rainforest. Barrio Florida. I loved it. Everything grew so fast. Where I used to live is now very modern and my house is gone.


Fast indeed! But that goes for the weeds too… :sweat_smile:

The best part is being able to grow almost anything. Plenty of tropicals. People used to say you couldn’t grow chill fruit here, that they weren’t worth bothering with, but low-chill accessions turned out to produce just fine with proper care.

There’s a lot of new suburbs popping up, modern and nice, but they have so little land per house… I’d like nothing more than 5 or 10 acres, and more if I could get it. It’d probably be hard to work as a vegetable farm, but it might be easier to just fill it up with fruit trees.


Love PR!
Mostly familiar with Rincon/Mayaguez area.
Can’t wait to visit again. Some folks out there growing ultra exotics. At least, before Maria… :sob:


Yes and fill the land with many bananas!!!



The ultra exotics are particularly popular out west. It’s nice and rainy over there, with good soil, so most of the exotic fruit nurseries are in that region.

María killed my avocado tree. :sob: Almost killed my spirit too, but I bounced back. A lot of the exotic fruit nurseries went dark for a time after that. Still, it was a learning experience. All my projects will be taking strong hurricanes into account.


All the bananas! We have some random fruit-type bananas that we always pick green for cooking… the birds and rodents often get ‘em if we let ‘em ripen. We manage to ripen Niño bananas just fine though. Plantains are my favorite for tostones and chips, with the extra thick Panaplátanos a close second. Mafafos are my dad’s favorite. I had a Morao red banana once, but I think I planted it in the wrong spot, ‘cause it eventually keeled over; never got to taste it.

I’d really like to get my hands on Fe’i Karat Bananas, but I don’t think they’re in the island, and importation of live bananas is a complicated legal process (pest concerns, of course). I did order some Enset seeds, one survivor currently in the ground (and seemingly headed for dormancy right now). I’d love to cook that root!


Gineos? Spelling? They were delicious! They were brought inside to ripen. Also living at the base of the Rainforest, we had plenty of Rain especially in April-May.


Guineos (hard g & silent u, ‘cause gi makes the “hee” or soft g “gee” sound). I think the hurricane season starts around that time, and extends to November, but we usually only see storms in the latter half of the year. The weather is a pet peeve of mine… when it’s rainy, I can’t garden, when it stops raining, I gotta work overtime to water the plants. :sweat_smile: