Home Made Additive Free Gherkins: Delicious Natural Pickles Made With Bread, Sunshine and Some Herbs

Delicious Natural Pickles Made With Bread, Sunshine and Some Herbs

Gherkins, or pickles, appear in the cuisine of many countries. They are delicious as a relish, a salad vegetable, give extra bite to sandwich fillings and salads, and they are also used as an accompaniment to hot dishes – a pleasant contrast to the warm food. They are also an excellent, healthy snack food.

Additive Free Gherkins

You can easily make your own additive free pickles, free from artificial colorings, flavors, or preservatives. This is a simple Hungarian recipe that doesn’t require much effort. The gherkins will taste, of course, slightly different to the store brought variety, but that’s because they are completely natural.

Summer Treat

This particular recipe is not good for long term storage – that is, keeping them over winter This recipe is one of what is called “summer tr...

Read more

Natural and Frugal Sunburn Treatments

It’s happened to us all at least once: The sunscreen may have failed, or been sweated off without re-application, or a small spot may have been missed. The result is an angry red patch of skin, and in extreme cases, blistering and peeling.

For those who are reluctant to get an over-the-counter solution, there are more eco-friendly solutions that are neither expensive nor complicated. In fact, you may already have some in your home right now.

Aloe: A Green Alternative to Burn Ointment

A handy houseplant to keep in the kitchen is the aloe plant (featured in the photo.) This member of the succulent family of cacti contains juices that are extremely soothing when applied directly to burn...

Read more

Go Green with Your Laundry Routine

Although laundry is a necessary evil, there are a lot of ways you can make it less “evil” for the environment. By taking some simple steps not only can you make doing laundry more eco-friendly, but you can actually save quite a bit of money as well. It’s a win-win situation.

Here are some easy ways to green up your laundry routine:

1. Wash in Cold Water

Whenever possible, wash your clothes in cold water rather than hot. As much as 90% of the energy that your washing machine uses goes to heating water. If you can avoid using hot water as much as possible you can significantly cut down on the energy usage of your machine. Not only does it help the environment by saving power, but you also can save money on your power bill each month.

2. Line Dry Clothing

Skip the dryer all together and h...

Read more

Watering of Your Organic Vegetable Garden

Ninety-five percent of the structure of the plant is composed of water. Almost all of the processes of the plant involves water, and this is why watering is one of the more important aspects of effective gardening for your vegetables’ organic garden. Together with light and carbon dioxide, water helps accelerate the necessary processes needed in effective care of your plants.

With vegetables, you cannot afford to go wrong since this will provide nourishment to both animals and humans alike. Water also acts a supplementary source aside from rainfall.

An irrigation system is necessary to provide the required amount of water in your garden. The natural sources of water, namely, precipitation and underground water systems, are not often sufficient for the plants...

Read more

Apartment Container Gardening Can Offset Rising Food Prices

 This is a guest post submitted from a fellow Urban Homesteader:

 

 

I have never had the inclination to become a farmer, but if food costs keep going up at the current rate, I may have no other option but to start a garden on my balcony. Every week the prices for basic foods are higher than the week before. No one is saying anything, but I am sure everyone has noticed. At this current pace, our weekly groceries will equal our monthly rent payment before the end of the year. I have no clue what is driving these prices, but something is going to have to give.

The economy and jobless statistics are still too unstable. Prolonged unemployment has thrown crushing blows within our family for the last two years. We have had to downsize from renting a house to an apartment...

Read more

What Changes Can I Make to My Garden to Be More Natural?

Gardening has changed a bit in recent years as people’s philosophy of gardening is starting to change to go back to more natural and organic methods. For those who have been gardening for a number of years, these new practices might be a bit hard to understand at first since the traditional ways of doing things is adding chemicals to the soil or plants to take care of problems and grow larger plants. Organic methods work a bit differently.

Traditional methods use chemical fertilizers to add nutrients to the soil. Organic methods use compost. This is organic matter and carbon matter mixed together. This would be things like fruit peels, vegetables, grass, hay, leaves, and other types of waste mixed together. Over time it breaks down into rich soil that doesn’t need any fertilizer at all...

Read more

Organic Garden Guide to Controlling Pests for Your Vegetables

If there is anything that prevents your organic garden from yielding the best vegetables, it will have to be the pests that invade and surround your area. Now, if you are really serious about controlling those pests and keeping them out of your garden for good, a volume of materials is readily available for you to be equipped and knowledgeable about the various types of pests that can threaten your crop.

The very hard thing about pest control is the fact that there are so many types of pests that can invade your garden; it will really be quite a challenge to recall them in one sitting, so full immersion to your gardening activities is the only surefire way to inculcate ample knowledge on pests to watch out for.

One of the tried and tested tactics for pest control is by familiarizing yourse...

Read more

Summer Gardening To Do List: Tasks and Projects for Summertime Garden Maintenance

Annuals

Annuals should be dead headed (the dead blooms picked or cut off with pruners) regularly in order to stimulate continued growth. Any annuals that have died should be pulled and – if the plant otherwise seemed healthy – should be tossed in the compost pile.

Weed your annual beds regularly to keep them neat looking, and add mulch as needed to keep moisture in.

Perennials

Dead head any spent blooms to keep the flowers coming on your perennial plants – the plant uses energy on spent flowers instead of growing new ones.

Stake up any taller perennials that might sway in the wind and break.

Prune rose bushes and cut off any spent flowers as they begin to brown in order to promote new flowers. Fertilize and check the plant for diseases and pests, and treat as needed.

Be on the lookou...

Read more

Fragrant Winter Shrubs: Perfuming Your Garden: Slideshow

Fragrant Winter Shrubs

Although sweet floral fragrances are usually associated with spring and summer flowering plants, there are a goodly number of shrubs, bulbs and bedding plants that perfume the air all through winter.

Fragrant Winter Plants

Fragrant Winter Shrubs

Best known of all winter fragrant shrubs is probably Daphne Odora – the flowers may be pink or white – the foliage dark green or green with a silver edge. It should be planted in a semi-shaded area along with another excellent shrub, Sarrococca, which has spicy, small white blooms and glossy pointed leaves – a plant of neat growth habit. Fragrant viburnums are a mid-winter favorite – nurserymen will have a selection of varieties.

The Fragrance of lemon blossoms is most delightful in a winter garden – as is that of other citrus...

Read more

Air Condition Your Garden

July, it is the time of the year when air conditioning is as important in the garden as it is in the home. You, as the temperature rises, can cool off with an electric fan, a cool drink or by hiding away in a cool spot. Your plants are not quite that lucky; yet certain gardening techniques can be employed to help your plants through the summer months.

The benefits of air conditioning in your garden will show up in the form of increased production, greater resistance to disease and pests and, in general, a more attractive vista. An improper over-heated environment during the warmer months often leads to wilt, dropping of buds and yellowing of foliage.

Aeration of the soil is concerned with its exposure to the air. If this is lacking then your plants very likely will suffer this summer...

Read more