Local Aquaponics


Our Ocean View Garden Club makes a tour of local gardens periodically. Last month, we visited La and Mike’s place where she has an extensive garden and he has started a thriving aquaponics system.

The tilapia live in this tank, the pipes carry the rich water to the plants.



Mike has also started a catfish pond here, but they are timid and don’t come out to have their picture taken.


There is a transition area between the aquaponics system and La’s vegetable garden.


Here you start to get a glimpse of the lush veggies and herbs.



It seems every garden has at least one Jackson.


La grows several patches of epazote, an herb she uses in her Thai dishes.


She also grows a number of Thai jalapenos. I brought home one to dry so I can plant the seeds.


I suppose these bunnies get the leftover veggies.


In December, 2009 I wrote a post about the system some friends started near the airport. You might like to refer back to that for other pictures.

If you are interested in starting your own aquaponics, check here for interesting information.

I took more pictures of this operation than I show here, so please watch this slideshow to see them.

For a larger version, click here.

A hui hou!

Solar At Last!


Oh, I’m such a happy girl to finally get this done! I’ve been talking with Poncho’s Solar for the longest time. Now that school was out and I could be here, I was able to go ahead.

I want to say that they are gracious, professional, friendly and more than a little helpful in everything they do. They have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and I can personally recommend them highly!

These pictures of the guys at work may not be especially thrilling to you, but it was exciting for me as I watched the panels come off the truck.


These were carefully stacked against the house and sent up to the guys on the roof as they were needed.


As each panel was needed, it was handed up. One man on the ground was cutting the struts and passing them up as required, too. Extra struts were put on in case I want to add more panels later (and I will).


I’m glad it wasn’t me having to be up on that roof! These guys are fearless!


The electricians did their job, too. I apologize for not getting their company name because they did a beautiful job, too. Everyone was wonderful and did perfect work.


Under the eaves it was too dark for me to get a good shot of where the power line runs from the electric box to the panels. If you look closely, you can tell where it is.


It’s not easy to see the panels from the ground, but here you can see the completed project.


Now all that’s left is for HELCO to come do the inspection and turn it on. I’m happy to be doing a little more for the environment.

A hui hou!

Happy Birthday!

Here are some famous (and infamous) people who celebrate their birthday today!

1630 – Charles II, King of England was born.
1736 – Patrick Henry, American hero
1903 – Bob Hope, Comedian
1917 – John F. Kennedy, US President
1935 – Gordon Taylor, British anesthesiologist (retired)
1989 – Danielle Keough, Elvis Presley’s granddaughter

I send them all my very best wishes, dead or alive!

Hau`oli lā hānau (Happy Birthday)

Lava to Lilikoi is Two Years Old!


On May 28, 2008 I wrote my first post for this blog. I started out writing only as a way to document my journey on this acre of lava for myself, family and a few friends. Over the past two years, my blog has evolved through cooking, traveling, gardening, and story-telling. No longer do I always regale you with my tales of woe in trying to make something grow on lava (only sometimes).

In the next year, I plan to do posts on a variety of topics, and may expand out of my “comfort zone.” Some of you are right here in Hawai`i and have seen the sights I write on, while others seem fascinated with reading of the culture we have here.

I’ve been considering my options. In the meantime, I hope each of you will tell me what areas you’d like to hear about that I haven’t touched yet.

Happy anniversary to Lavalily!

A hui hou!

Old Recipes


From time to time, for as long as my emotional stamina can handle it, I go through boxes of stuff left over from my parents, primarily my mother. Such was the case this morning.

I found an old Sunset cookbook I’d given her years ago when I first moved to California. She had transformed a hardback book one-inch thick to an eight-inch thick scrapbook of old recipes from people from churches where my dad had been the pastor, from other relatives and especially from my grandmother, who had also gleaned recipes from parishioners in my grandfather’s churches. They were scribbled on the back of old bulletins, on the side of business cards, on napkins, on whatever was at hand.

In this cook/scrapbook I found love notes from my father to her, handmade cards to them from my brother and me when we were children, clippings from newspapers telling about all of our accomplishments, and so much more.

I was surprised at the number of recipes for making your own sweetened condensed milk, for example, or making your own sour cream to stretch dollars at the store. On reflection, I realize these ideas came from World War II and before that, the Great Depression. She also kept labels from products that she used regularly, but that may no longer be in existence today.

Mother and Daddy were in the process of trying to put together a cookbook, using many of these recipes. I started thinking what fun they would have had writing a blog if they’d had access to something like the internet.

I may try a few of these recipes and let you know how they turn out.

A hui hou!

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