Updated: Jun 26
On the last chapter of the Hawaii move and sugar shack rebuild story, we left off at our first night in the Sugar shack. That first night under a metal roof and out of the tent, was a truly epic feeling. Waking up the next am in the construction zone though, we knew we were far from done. We still had quite the to do list, and to be fair, to date we still have quite the to do list. Then again, do you ever really get rid of the to do list? While it was nice being out of the tent, the structure at this stage was nowhere near feeling like a home, and even though we had quite a bit left to do, one of the next missions was a bit of nesting. The last few months in Oregon before moving to Hawaii we stayed with family, and then we had the Airbnb, then a tent, so after all that instability we were feeling like wandering vagabonds. So, once we moved up into the structure, we decided on where we wanted windows, and cut them out, and got some mosquito bug screen stapled up. We organized, got shelving built, put some photos on the wall, and basically tried to make the bedroom side as comfortable as we could. We had discovered when putting the tin up on the new addition, that the old original tin on the kitchen & Living room side of the house was in desperate need of replacement, and we did not want to really start tackling the interior of that half the sugar shack. It just did not seem smart to make an interior nice and together, knowing we were going to have to rip the roof and joists off and rain old termite poop and debris down, and work around a more completed room. By this time, Covid has taken over the world, so while we had ordered new roof, it would be some time before it actually made it to the island. So, we pretty much had to work on other projects and plan our attack of the roof for whenever the new roof tin arrived.
One of the other big projects that we were able to knock off the to do list, and marks the first, and so far, only time we have farmed out work to contractors. I installed the solar system myself after teaching myself thru YouTube videos, but the solar panels up till this point were in a mildly sunny spot in the yard, and we constantly had to moving them around to mow, weed eat, have water delivered, and find the most sun exposure we could. Which as glamourous as that sounds, got incredibly old quickly. I can do heights, but its certainly not my favorite, and I did not relish the idea of figuring out how to get the panels to the roof, and make sure they were installed proper, as we are in a hurricane zone and generally have high trade winds. Luckily, I got a great recommendation from a local friend, and solar guy Kurt had the panels installed all nicely. He assures me the roof will go with the panels still attached. Hopefully, I never get to prove him right or wrong. While he was here with his huge ladder, (took a 24-foot ladder!) I did climb up and check the views…Ocean for miles! Shows when we build our permitted legal house, going to have to be a two story so that can enjoy the ocean views and breezes
The time waiting for the roof tin to arrive also gave us a chance to start to work on the land and learn more about the property we just purchased. We started weed eating and mowing paths and sections, and uncovering more trees, and learning the lands story. We were able to cut our way into the barn and found some old photos of the property in its prime. The original homesteaders poured their time into this spot, and their legacy still lives on in the mature trees and landscaping. The more we uncovered, the more we fell in love with this spot. I feel so blessed to be able to carry on the torch, and it helps guide our decision making as well, and each tree and bamboo that we plant we picture the future journey and wonder what life will be like.
I also used this time to start getting the grow and greenhouses better setup, and more dialed in. It is definitely a different experience growing in Hawaii, and that first run, and even the second and third run really, I had a lot of room to improve. While we did have successful harvests, and did pull down some nice buds, I am a hard critic, especially on my own work and flowers, so it definitely was and continues to be humbling to say the least. A key part to Hawaii is doing every preventative method, with as much diversity as possible, and doing everything you can to improve air flow, and lesson the influence of humidity, and the fungal pressures that come with it. Every cycle I have gone heavier handed with de-leafing and deep clean ups on every inner growth, which seems to be a huge key to success here, especially when coupled with an intensive IPM regiment. I am also confident that once we finish the house build, we can start putting more money into garden infrastructure which should also help. But then again, cannabis is such a beautiful plant that always has more room to improve and more room to learn. Which is part of the fun.