Small innovations

The big innovations of the world are more interesting than the small ones. There's your last truism for the day—bigger is bigger. But the bigger things tend to take longer because bigger is more. The small things, though—you can make small innovations all day long out of the things right in front of you.

Using my Scoutcraft skills from twenty years ago, I made an enormous tomato cage out of the nuisance bamboo at the edge of the yard. (This is a week ago, it's an even bigger jungle now.) There are also some big tripods in the back for bitter melon and luffa. It's not a huge innovation, or a great one, but it's something out of nothing, and it's big.

But here's the bamboo innovation I'm really proud of. No rope necessary. The leaves and branches are also a nuisance. They're not structural like the main part of the bamboo, so I typically pack it into the yard waste and send it away. Then I wanted to get some mulch to put around vegetable plants whose soil was drying out in the sun... but I didn't really want to go out anywhere. I looked at the trashy bamboo twigs and leaves waiting to get disposed and thought—that looks like mulch.

Yeah. It is mulch.

Insanely proud of this simple idea. This was a week ago, and after a week of getting to keep moist soil all day, the chilies are much more mature looking now.


Not necessarily related, but the latest episode of Talk Python To Me is about something in the same pattern of small innovations: Episode 327, Little Automation Tools in Python.

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