Newsletter October 2009

Sacred Garden Sanctuary News October 2009

Some interesting developments have occured since the last newsletter:

1) Solar Pump installed

We purchased and installed (with professional assistance) a new solar pump, controller, and panels. This was a significant investment, about $3700, but we believed it well worth it to eliminate generator troubles we had been having, which had interrupted our water supply and endangered our current and future plantings.

All went well (no pun intended!) and  we now have a reliable source of water. The new pump has a lower capacity, so water is pumped at a lower rate, but it is more than adequate for our current needs and the needs we foresee in the future. Right now we only are pumping water from the time the sun comes up until about 10am, so we have most of the day's sunshine in reserve for future capacity.

2) Progress with the dome building

We have begun the actual building of Michaels bathroom dome, and have some pictures to prove it:

Our current goal is to finish the dome before Michael leaves on a trip to see his family in early November. So far, we found that mixing the earth, cement, and water by hand takes about 80 percent of the time and effort, so we are currently looking for a mixer to borrow or buy, ASAP. This should speed things up tremendously. We still have a few items to obtain and/or construct: the door/door frame, a vent pipe for the toilet, and framing for the window.

Michael was originally planning to build two domes, connected, but has decided the one dome and his camper/trailer will be sufficient for his needs.

We hope to be able to show you the dome sometime in November, which still may require some  finish work at that time.

3) Michael's camper/trailer

Michael now has his solar electrical system fully functioning. We had some problems getting a defective solar panel replaced but everything worked out in the end. Michael has done a nice job decorating the interior of his camper/trailer, which he has named "Buttercup", and has done some preliminary lanscaping, planting a living fence of acacia bushes, collecting specimens for a cactus garden, and planting some Chinaberry trees, which are related to Neem. Here is a photo of his camper/trailer interior.


Until next time,


Edwin Basye, Steward