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Author Topic: Bilge Powder, Product, Fertilizer  (Read 6968 times)
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Gaffin
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« on: 16 August 2007, 10:50:50 »

A companion entry for the inventor, Stujuck Bilge. I will probably be developing ammun, nitrios, sirius, magnus and nomite later, and add them to the Santharian Table of Elements. For now, though - enjoy.  grin

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Name of Product. Bilge Powder

Overview. Created by Gnorian inventor Stujuck Bilge in the aftermath of the Year of Darkness, Bilge Powder is a light brown plant fertilizer that enriches the target soil with essential nutrients required for the healthy growth of crops. It is a very fine powder, and when mixed with water will give it a milky, pale blue hue.The powder is sprinkled on the desired soil. The applier must then till the soil, and it will sink in and become consumed by the plant’s roots. The invention of Bilge Powder was influential because it was the first man-made fertilizer that could be cheaply produced – it also made the plants grow more rapidly, allowing for more to be harvested in one season. Crops fed with the powder are generally more tasteful, as well.

Method of Production. The production of Bilge Powder is a very complex and dangerous endeavour, and entails a series of alchemical reactions between solid and liquid elements; first, the producer must combine a powdery substance (called ammun by Stujuk) with a liquid named nitrios - a strange substance that burns to the touch - in a glass phial. A violent reaction will take place, and the result will be a handful of very fine white powder.

Then he must similarly combine chips of a special brown mineral called nomite, with another burning liquid called sirius. Another, similar powder is produced, but somewhat coarser and grainier, and it is brown. The two powders are mixed in a saucer, or a bowl, and a small amount of water is added. Then, it is left standing for several hours. At the end of this period, it is officially Bilge Powder and safe to feed plants.

Ammun and nomite can typically be purchased in any marketplace or apothecary; nitrios and sirius must be created manually, as they cannot be transported or contained safely. Sirius is created by crushing a Xazuran stone into a fine powder, then applying Orm fluid onto the powder. Nitrios is created similarly, but with the Orm fluid applied to Malthanune in powdered form.

It is important to note that the two aforementioned burning substances are extremely dangerous and are only to be handled by professionals. Some may be tempted to create their own fertilizer because of the low cost required, but it is nearly impossible to produce without a mastery of alchemy and can result in severe injury.

Areas of Production. Bilge Powder is, naturally, mainly produced by individual Gnomes based in or around the city of Gnorath. However, there are also several guilds and groups that are dedicated to the production of the fertilizer. Individually made Bilge Powder is preferred, though, because of the care that is put in to the product; guild-produced Bilge Powder is usually made with less diligence, and the focus is not on quality, but on quantity.

Currently, no formal trade agreements are formed around this product, but it is a coveted commodity of farmers in most Santharian provinces, especially Stratania. It is usually traded for luxury items such as art pieces, and furniture like tables and chairs. The powder is typically contained in brown cloth sacks weighing 1-pygge each, and transported by horse-drawn wagon.

Usage. Bilge Powder is used to promote the healthy and speedier growth of plants, namely, crops harvested for food. To apply the powder to a plant, one simply places an amount in a container of sorts - for example, a bowl – and then sprinkles it on the soil at the desired location. It will sink into the soil and be absorbed by the plant’s roots. Alternatively, the fertilizer can also be mixed with water and applied in the same manner.

The fine white powder provides the plant with what is written in Stujuck's journal as "the three primary components of a plant's nutrition; similar to the meats and vegetables in our diet," while the brown powder provides a known element called magnus, which he says "triggers the subject's innate ability to produce its own food through the use of water and sunlight."

It is recommended that Bilge Powder be used only in moderation, for if the soil is subjected to the compound in rapid succession it will begin to develop a resistance against it, and the fertilizer will become useless. For best effect, apply Bilge Powder at the time of planting, and near the time of harvesting, of the desired crop; this will ensure that the soil will not have the opportunity to build up a resistance, but will be provided with the nutrients needed.

History. Bilge Powder was first produced by a Gnorian inventor by the name of Stujuck Bilge in the aftermath of the terrible Year of Darkness, a year in which plant growth was nearly impossible in most parts of the continent due to the vast amounts of snow and extremely low temperatures. As such, agriculture suffered, and very little crops were produced, which resulted in a devastating famine; had it not been for the food stockpiled several years previously (which was conducted by the Arch-Alchemist of Gnorath at the time, Gnor the Unifier), many more Gnomes would have succumbed to extreme hunger. Its invention was a godsend to the Erpheronian population, and was rapidly introduced to the rest of the continent through trade.

Over the years, despite meticulous documentation by its creator, the product has been left relatively untouched; the original formula is still effective and in heavy use today. Although, modern alchemists have been debating over the introduction of iron into the compound – as of yet, though, it has been refused, and traditional organic fertilizers, such as dung, can be used to compensate for the lack of the mineral.

Somewhere around 1420 a.S., there were a number of incidents reported of the fertilizer spontaneously exploding, killing or severely harming the user. The reports were later discounted as a hoax by a group of Daran alchemists in an attempt to try and blemish the powder’s reputation in order to promote their own fertilizer formula; a slightly modified version of Bilge Powder itself, dyed to a blue-white colour with increased amounts of sirius. Ironically, these changes caused the several batches that had managed to sell to catch flame if handled roughly.

Lore and Legend. Due to its somewhat arcane nature to the commoner, some consider Bilge Powder to be a miracle sent from Jeyriall, Goddess of the Harvest. Some individuals ritually bathe in a solution of Bilge Powder, water and animal blood, considering it to be an act of purification. The animal blood is said to resemble mortality, the water symbolizing life’s necessities, and the powder symbolizing the divine and extraordinary.

Some incidents have been reported of a reaction between the three substances, causing blotches and itchy boils on the skin. Despite health issues and general public distaste, these individuals uphold their ideals and a small cult is beginning to form in the city of Gnorath. The name and hierarchy is unknown, but the number of followers is reported to be several dozen and counting.

There are also those on the other side of the debate, arguing that Bilge Powder is an "unnatural" invention that has interfered with natural life. They believe that the power to augment a living being with man-made substances is unholy and only bad will come of it in the end. The debate between the two beliefs is mostly superstitious and religious, although there are some scholars who support one side or the other.

Due to the belief that Bilge Powder is unholy, rumors have spread throughout the kingdom of Santharia, and has caused some of the public to warily handle the product. Some farmers, while envious of the luck of their peers for being in possession of the fertilizer, are also afraid of it because of its supposedly supernatural effects. By many arguing against the product, it is considered one of the "Black Inventions" that were created by agents of Coor, the God of Chaos, and that mortal beings interrupting with the natural flow of nature will eventually bring upon the doom of the world; the End of Days, or the Armageddon.
« Last Edit: 02 September 2007, 15:32:16 by Artimidor Federkiel » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: 16 August 2007, 18:38:27 »

Only skim-read...but I will comment fully later...please change 'A special Brown rock' to 'A special brown rock called...'....
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« Reply #2 on: 16 August 2007, 20:43:11 »

Hello!! :D
my untrained eye will be commenting in the naturous colour of Green!!

Name of Product. Bilge Powder

Overview. Created by Gnorian inventor Stujuck Bilge in the aftermath of the Year of Darkness, Bilge Powder is a plant fertilizer that enriches the target soil with essential nutrients required for the healthy growth of crops. The powder is sprinkled on the desired soil, and then it will sink in and become consumed by the plant’s roots. The invention of Bilge Powder was influential because it was the first man-made fertilizer that could be cheaply produced – it also made the plants grow more rapidly, allowing for more to be harvested in one season. Crops fed with the powder are generally more tasteful, as well.
One thing i didnt get. I dont see how the fertiliser can just "sink in", is it very heavy or something grin buck. Maybe it could be worked into the soil by a horse drawn tool, or just with a hoe etc or maybe the rain just does its job.

Method of Production. The production of Bilge Powder is a very complex and dangerous endeavour, and entails a series of chemical reactions between solid and liquid elements; first, the producer must combine a powdery substance (called ammun by Stujuk) with a liquid named nitrios - a strange substance that burns to the touch - in a glass phial. A violent reaction will take place, and the result will be a handful of very fine white powder.
If its complex and so dangerous to make surely it wouldnt be just so cheap. just a thought...

Then he must similarly combine chips of a special brown rock - found only along the eastern Santharian coast – with another burning liquid called sirius. Another, similar powder is produced, but somewhat coarser and grainier, and it is brown. The two powders are mixed in a saucer, or a bowl, and a small amount of water is added. Then, it is left standing for several hours. At the end of this period, it is officially Bilge Powder and safe to feed plants.
I am not familiar with alchemy in santharia, but in Terran chemistry a chemical reaction between a solid and a liquid doesnt usually make a solid...

It is important to note that the two aforementioned burning substances are extremely dangerous and are only to be handled by professionals – which is why a mastery of alchemy is required to undergo the production of the compound.

Areas of Production. Bilge Powder is, naturally, mainly produced by individual Gnomes based in or around the city of Gnorath. However, there are also several factories that produce some amount of fertilizer. Individually made Bilge Powder is preferred, though, because of the care that is put in to the product; mass-produced Bilge Powder is usually made with less diligence, and the focus is not on quality, but on quantity.

Currently, no formal trade agreements are formed around this product, but it is a coveted commodity in the less fertile southern Santharian provinces, especially Stratania. It is usually traded for luxury items such as art pieces, and furniture like tables and chairs. The powder is typically contained in 1-pygge sacks, and transported by horse-drawn wagon.

Usage. Bilge Powder is used to promote the healthy and speedier growth of plants, namely, crops harvested for food. To apply the powder to a plant, one simply places an amount in a container of sorts - for example, a bowl – and then sprinkles it on the soil at the desired location. It will sink into the soil and be absorbed by the plant’s roots. Alternatively, the fertilizer can also be mixed with water and applied in the same manner.

The fine white powder provides the plant with what is writ in Stujuck's journal as "the three primary components of a plant's nutrition; similar to the meats and vegetables in our diet," while the brown powder provides a known substance called magnus, which he says "triggers the subject's innate ability to produce its own food through the use of water and sunlight."

History. Bilge Powder was first produced by a Gnorian inventor by the name of Stujuck Bilge in the aftermath of the terrible Year of Darkness, a year in which plant growth was nearly impossible in most parts of the continent due to the vast amounts of snow and extremely low temperatures. As such, agriculture suffered, and very little crops were produced, which resulted in a devastating famine; had it not been for the food stockpiled several years previously (which was conducted by the Arch-Alchemist of Gnorath at the time, Gnor the Unifier), many more Gnomes would have succumbed to extreme hunger.Its invention was a godsend to the Santharian population, and Bilge was paid handsomely for its invention.

Over the years, despite meticulous documentation by its creator, the product has been left relatively untouched; the original formula is still effective and in heavy use today. Although, modern alchemists have been debating over the introduction of iron into the compound – as of yet, though, it has been refused, and traditional organic fertilizers, such as dung, can be used to compensate for the lack of the mineral.

Somewhere around 1420 a.S., there were a number of incidents reported of the fertilizer spontaneously exploding, killing or severely harming the user. The reports were later discounted as a hoax by a group of Daran alchemists in an attempt to try and blemish the powder’s reputation in order to promote their own fertilizer formula; a slightly modified version of Bilge Powder itself, dyed to a blue-white colour with increased amounts of sirius. Ironically, these changes caused the several batches that had managed to sell to catch flame if handled roughly.

Lore and Legend. Due to its somewhat arcane nature to the commoner, some consider Bilge Powder to be a miracle sent from Jeyriall, Goddess of the Harvest. Some individuals ritually bathe in a solution of Bilge Powder, water and animal blood, considering it to be an act of purification. The animal blood is said to resemble mortality, the water symbolizing life’s necessities, and the powder symbolizing the divine and extraordinary.

Some incidents have been reported of a reaction between the three substances, causing blotches and itchy boils on the skin. Despite health issues and general public distaste, these individuals uphold their ideals and a small cult is beginning to form in the city of Gnorath. The name and hierarchy is unknown, but the number of followers is reported to be several dozen and counting (period)

Another Great entry Gaffin!! :D
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« Reply #3 on: 16 August 2007, 23:54:46 »

Thank you, once again, for your wonderful comments! I have made all but one of the changes mentioned; I am not learned in chemistry, and the only bit I know is what I have taught myself. As such, I cannot confirm nor deny Petros' claims. However, if a reasonable alternative is introduced, I will modify it gladly.  ;)
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« Reply #4 on: 17 August 2007, 00:14:49 »


I am not familiar with alchemy in santharia, but in Terran chemistry a chemical reaction between a solid and a liquid doesnt usually make a solid...


Eh? Here is a basic equation for you Petros:

NaOH (Solid)+ HCl (Liquid) -> NaCl (Solid)+ H (gas) + H2o(water) [Note Equation is unbalanced]

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« Reply #5 on: 17 August 2007, 02:02:35 »

Someones been revising their Gcse Chemistry! ;)

i never said that it couldnt be done, it just not common... anyway i dont think salt is going to help the plants growth. ! :D



                               
                                         

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« Reply #6 on: 17 August 2007, 03:04:35 »

It is common though- That was my point Petros...
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« Reply #7 on: 17 August 2007, 03:10:22 »

ok, whatever, i stand corrected!! :D sorry to cause all the hassle!! :)
Anyway decipher you can come back to me when...when...when you balance your equations!! *storms off in a huff* lol
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« Reply #8 on: 19 August 2007, 16:39:42 »

Okeydokey, here I am with some comments on the Bilge Poweder, Gaffin! :D

- "applyer" should be "applier"

- "chemical reactions" should be "alchemical reactions"

- You say that the "aforementioned burning substances" are "easy to find", but aren't they compounds as well that first need to be produced and can hardly be picked up somewhere? My knowledge of chemistry is limited, but a hint from where the ingredients for this powder come from would be good to have.

- Uhmmm... "factories" isn't a good medieval word. "Factories" mean full mass-production that was not so common before the 18th/19th Earthen century. You get a bit too much industrial revolution in here when you label production of Bilge Powder explicitly a "mass-production". I wouldn't go that far. - It's ok to have the powder being produced in in larger quantities, though I wouldn't recommend to go to the extreme and calling it a "mass-production".

What we should try avoid a bit is to make this powder so good and the components so easy to optain that it could be used anywhere in Santharia. For example you could mention that Bilge Powder is very effective to make crops grow again where there was a longer dry periode (or e.g. after the Year of Darkness), but that if used permanently won't be acccepted by the plants that well. So too much could lead to harm as well, making it a necessity to use it with care. You know, we just should try to keep things in perspective, and let nature primarily do her work, so that the fertilzer is a good addition, but nothing that predominates Santharia - maybe make it even a bit more difficult to produce therefore? We just shouldn't end up with gene-manipulated crops and stuff like that everywhere as we have it now here on Earth.

- Something's missing here: "what is written in Stujuck's"

- "Its invention was a godsend to the Santharian population" - the kingdom of Santharia didn't exist at that time. Our gnomes lived in Erpheronia, the supposed source or reason of the Year of Darkness. So it surely helped the Erpheronians, but the fertilizer could have been spread throughout Southern Sarvonia as well through trade. So that part needs to be written a bit in this direction. Mayb the Erpheronians even profited with that invention considerably...

- I like that hoax idea... Really funny! lol

- At the last section you might get a bit to the current debat on biological and enhanced products we have here on Earth: Some might see it as a God's will to be able to fertilize the crops that way, others might say that the substance is dangerous if not done properly and against the Gods will. Some superstition regarding the gnomish "dark inventions" might come from here as well. If we keep the utilization of the fertilizer not so generally spread, some farmers might be envious to others that they cannot use it and thus the superstition would grow towards that product.

- All in all once again a very thorough entry that has everything it needs where it is supposed to be  thumbup - Have a look at my suggestions in order to amend a few things here and there, but once again this looks like a great addition to the Compendium! Great to see that our gnomes get some more attention this way, Gaffin! ;)
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« Reply #9 on: 20 August 2007, 03:23:55 »

Artimidor's wonderful comments have been implemented.  :)
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« Reply #10 on: 21 August 2007, 03:55:20 »

I read through it and found some unclear passages and grammatical errors, which were also fixed.
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« Reply #11 on: 21 August 2007, 04:32:01 »

It's great to see such diligent contributers like you are, Gaffin - we could use more of those that get to integrating comments so fast and thoroughly :) Very well done!

There's only one thing that won't fit, which is the reference to Avá's Dream at the end. While not yet explicitly elaborated on the site, Avá is a purely elven Goddess and humans don't recognize here. Coór exists as the 13th, unofficial God, though, for the humans as well. Humans believe in just 12 Gods.

General note on world developing, maybe for future entries as well: Personally I wouldn't lean too much on Earthen things and - as in this case - get Earthen elements into Santharia and build a fertilzer that could exist on Earth as well. It doesn't hurt to bring in some fantasy elements, like you did here with the Xazuran stone and the sirius element and give it more a fantastic touch with unusual ingredients that make such a fertilizer unique. :)

Anyway, from my point of view this is already pretty good now - let's see if there are other comments, but this has developed pretty well! Very nice job, Gaffin! thumbup
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« Reply #12 on: 23 August 2007, 23:54:21 »

Just bumping to get this noticed again - it's still open for comments, people!
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« Reply #13 on: 28 August 2007, 02:21:25 »

Okeydokey - as there are no other comments, I've marked this one as ready for the next site update... :)

Plus, seeing that you're busy already with your next entry, I've given you the official title of "Apprentice" now, Gaffin, the first step to become an official member... *points at the shiny plaque next to Gaffin's name*
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« Reply #14 on: 28 August 2007, 02:57:14 »

Holy moley! Thanks a lot, Art! Wahooo!  grin thumbup
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