Homemade Natural Fruit and Vegetable Wash

Homemade Natural Fruit and Vegetable Wash

This is a natural wash you can use to wash all your fruits and vegetables. It will save you money making your own then having to keep buying it at the store. I just put it in a spray bottle and as I’m filling up the bowl with water I spray the fruit or vegetables and then let it soak for about 10 minutes. Rinse the fruit or vegetables really good afterward.

Ingredients

1 cup of water
1 cup of vinegar
5 drops of lemon essential oil ( I use young living or DoTerra)

Shake well before use

Product Review: Yard Gard Eco Kill Insect Spray

Product Review: Yard Gard Eco Kill Insect Spray

I was sent several bottles of Eco Kill to try out on my garden this year to see if it would help keep the insects away naturally.  I tried Eco Kill out because its all natural and non toxic and it’s safe around children and animals.  I sprayed my vegetables and herbs with it several times.  I also gave a bottle to my mom to use on her garden and she liked that it was all natural and didn’t have a bad smell.

The ingredients are castor oil, white pepper, peppermint oil,citric acid, citronella oil, garlic oil,soybean flour, red pepper, lecithin and soap.

Its recommended that you spray at night. If you garden and would like to try a natal insect repellent that won’t cause harm you can visit  Protectmyyard.com

The info from the company is below

Yard Gard ECOKILL organic insect killer is for outdoor use on home lawns and gardens. Our all natural spray is eco-friendly friendly using only organic ingredients. It is safe for use around children and pets and can be applied to plants the same day of harvest so that you can eat you produce without the danger of poisions and other harmful prodcuts. Ecokill will not harm the environment while still giving you effective insect control. Our product does not kill bees that help pollinate your garden. With ECOKILL you can effectively garden worry free!

Yard Gard ECOKILL organic insect killer kills a variety of caterpillars, moths, flies, spiders and other bugs including army worm, Japanese beetle, cut worm, diamond back moth, squash borer, loopers, crickets, grass hoppers, aphids, snails, earwigs, leafhopper, locust, spiders, leaf-footed bug, Lycaenidae moth, leaf miner, roaches, chinch bug, nematodes, and more! Take your garden to the next level while still protecting the things you love. With Ecokill you can effectively protect your lawn and garden without polluting the soil or causing harm to you lawn and family.

– Environmentally safe

– Safe for use around children and pets                                                     

– Non-toxic

– For Organic Gardening

– All Natural Insecticide or All Natural Insect Killer

– Kills by Contact and repels

10 Reasons to Have a Family Vegetable Garden

10 Reasons to Have a Family Vegetable Garden

There are few meals that are as rewarding as one that you’ve prepared featuring produce you’ve grown yourself; as food prices rise and the economy struggles to rebound, it’s also a great way to significantly slash your grocery bill. The benefits of cultivating a vegetable garden are almost endless; here are ten reasons why families might want to consider doing so themselves.

Teaching Kids About Sustainability – One of the most important things the modern child can learn about is sustainability, or acquiring “green” habits and reducing their carbon footprint. Working side-by-side in a garden, especially an organic one, can help parents pass these values on through leading by example.

Hands-On Biology Lessons – Most kids tend to learn things more quickly if they can interact with their lessons and have a hands-on experience. Starting seedlings and nurturing them until harvest is a great way to help kids understand the basics of biology and botany.

Reducing Grocery Bills – As mentioned above, the expense of a garden is almost always significantly offset by the reduction in grocery bills and food costs. Homegrown vegetables cost markedly less to cultivate and have the added bonus of reaching maturity right outside your door, which can also affect fuel usage and car mileage.

Family Project – As kids get older parents often discover that finding common ground becomes increasingly difficult. Getting collectively involved in a big project like a family kitchen garden can provide talking points and a shared interest that makes connecting with tweens and teens a bit less difficult.

Discouraging Sedentary Lifestyle Habits – Kids that are working in a vegetable garden are physically engaged and active, rather than passively entertained by television and video games. Getting kids outside into the fresh air and sunshine can help them form less sedentary habits, which will pay off greatly in the long run.

Improving Diet and Eating Habits – Mushy, bland vegetables that are pulled from a bag in the freezer aren’t typically appealing to the notoriously finicky taste buds of children. However, freshly-harvested produce is at its tasty and nutritious peak, making it easier to coerce children into eating things that are good for them while simultaneously encouraging better eating habits.

Instilling an Appreciation for Hard Work – Spending some of their free time in a garden can help kids gain a new appreciation for the amount of hard work that goes into the growing, harvesting, and preparing of food. When food comes from a grocery store shelf straight into the house, most children have a more difficult time grasping the amount of effort that producing that food requires.

Giving Kids a Sense of Accomplishment – From the moment a seedling first begins to poke through the soil to the eventual harvest of a tangible result of their effort, kids are constantly being rewarded through gardening. As plants grow and thrive, so will a child’s self-esteem and sense of accomplishment.

Teaching Kids Responsibility – Turning a packet of seeds into something that they can eat requires attention and dedication, which can help kids learn a sense of responsibility. Neglecting their plot of earth is almost certain to lead to a lackluster or even non-existent harvest, helping kids understand that some chores cannot be shirked without consequences.

Growing Special and Difficult-to-Find Varieties – A kid who refuses to eat a grocery-bin carrot might be intrigued enough by a red or purple variety to give them a try; recipes that call for produce that isn’t in particularly high demand might be impossible for a non-gardening cook to prepare. The ability to choose rare, heirloom and specialty varieties of vegetables for your family garden is one of the biggest reasons to invest your time and effort as a group into the project.
Urban-dwellers aren’t necessarily excluded from the prospect of gardening, even if they live in apartments or condos without available lawn space. There are often programs set in place in such areas to provide families with small garden plots in exchange for a monthly fee or labor contributions. If you live in a densely populated city, it might be a good idea to check for such programs before giving up the idea of a family garden.

source: http://www.summernannyjobs.com/blog/10-reasons-to-have-a-family-vegetable-garden/

Winter Gardening: Indoor Organic Gardening Secrets

Winter Gardening: Indoor Organic Gardening Secrets

Not all of us have the space to grow an outdoor garden. Some of us don’t even have outdoor space. This doesn’t mean you have to sit back and not utilize your green thumb. Indoor gardening is a perfect option for those living in the city, an apartment, or other tight quarters. There are various types of plants that you can grow indoors. You can grow pretty much anything you wish including vegetables and herbs. The first step is to select a container and a location to start your indoor garden.

Windowsill gardening with EcoScraps.

Windowsills are a great place to start your indoor organic garden. If you don’t have a windowsill, then counter-tops or tabletops near a window are other options. In order to have strong and healthy plants, you will need to find the location with an excellent source of sunlight. The container you choose to use will also have an impact on the success of your garden. Be sure to choose a container that will allow for proper drainage. Containers or pots that are lightweight and easy to move will help you transport your plant throughout the day to sunny locations. After your container has been selected, it is time to add the organic EcoScraps Potting Mix. Choosing organic soil over traditional soils will greatly help your garden be healthy without the added pesticides.

Vegetables

Growing vegetables indoors can be tricky, but that doesn’t mean it can’t happen, it will just require a little more attention and care. Tomatoes, beans, peppers, and eggplants are great vegetables to try growing indoors. Most vegetables, like tomatoes, require a lot of sunlight. The success of your plant may greatly depend on how much light it is getting. So, it may be best to place your plant at a south-facing window. Remember to water your plants frequently, but not too much. Over-watering is a common mistake made by many gardeners. Also, depending on the type of vegetables you are growing, you will need to choose a pot large enough for the roots to grow.

Herbs

Herbs are great plants to grow when it comes to indoor gardens. Herbs can be added to food for flavor or used as natural remedies. Some herbs that do well indoors include: thyme, basil, sage, oregano, and mint. You can plant a variety of these plants into one pot or plant them individually.  Growing herbs indoors is convenient because whenever you need to use them, they are right there in your home.

Now it is time to start your garden. Whether you choose to grow vegetables or herbs, you will find out right away that all your plants need a little TLC (tender love and care). Gardening is definitely a balancing act. You don’t want to over-water or underwater. You need enough sunlight, but not too much that your soil will dry out. But this is all part of the fun and gratification of gardening. So, go out, experiment, grow, and enjoy your indoor garden.

photo creditnotamaiar via photopin cc

For more good ideas visit:  article source: http://ecoscraps.com/indoor-organic-gardening-secrets/

Dangers of Methyl Iodide Fumigant for Strawberry Production

Dangers of Methyl Iodide Fumigant for Strawberry Production

Tell the E.P.A.: No more methyl iodide

Methyl iodide is a nasty chemical. It is a known neurotoxin and endocrine disruptor, and scientists in labs handle only small amounts using special protective equipment because it is so toxic. But do you know where else it is used? As a pesticide on strawberries and other food crops.

The battle against methyl iodide is being fought on several fronts. Last summer, Washington state banned the use of the pesticide. Unfortunately, the pendulum swung the other way in California, when despite more than 53,000 public comments submitted by CREDO activists and our allies, the state’s Department of Pesticide Regulation approved the chemical for agricultural use last December.

But the ultimate power to regulate pesticides lies with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which has just decided to reconsider its approval of methyl iodide — approval that was granted during George W. Bush’s administration.

The new public comment period is our chance to finally ban this toxic chemical from being used as a pesticide on our food. But we must act quickly.

Methyl iodide has been subject to ongoing controversy in its approval process. The U.S. EPA approved methyl iodide for agricultural use in 2007, amid criticism from more than 50 prominent scientists1 that the process was hidden from public view and the research focus was too limited. In California, evidence has come to light that the DPR ignored advice from its own scientists. The head of that agency has since resigned — to work for the chemical company Clorox.

There is little to debate about methyl iodide’s toxicity. It is a known neurotoxin, disrupts thyroid function, damages developing fetuses, and has caused lung tumors in laboratory animals. Fumigating fields with the gas — even with the strictest regulations — would no doubt still result in unacceptable exposures to farmworkers and surrounding populations.

Urging the E.P.A. to permanently suspend and cancel all uses of methyl iodide as a pesticide is the only surefire way to keep this poison away from workers and our food.

Tell the E.P.A.: Reverse your previous decision and prohibit the agricultural use of methyl iodide.

1 www.epa.gov/pesticides/factsheets/iodomethane_letter.pdf

photo and story source:http://act.credoaction.com/campaign/epa_block_methyl_iodide/?rc=tw1

America’s Oldest Seed Company Needs Your Help

America’s Oldest Seed Company Needs Your Help

America’s Oldest Seed Company Needs Your Help

As cooks and food lovers you understand that the best meals come from using the finest ingredients. Those ingredients come from seeds that have been handed down through generations and preserved by gardeners and seed companies, like Landreth,who keep the supply alive.

Landreth Seed Company

Right now you may buy your ingredients at grocery stores or farmers markets, but what happens if one day you decide you want your food to taste fresher and dive into growing some of your own herbs and vegetables? You’ll no doubt start researching where to buy seeds from and maybe find that you can’t find the seeds for what you want to cook with. This is the result of losing small, heirloom seed companies and the consolidation of our seed supply in this country.The D. Landreth Seed Company has been around since 1784 and is billed as America’s oldest seed company. Last week the company announced that their loan has been called in and their accounts had been frozen. So they launched a campaign to raise one million dollars by selling copies of their 2012 heirloom seed catalog to raise the necessary funds in 30 days or they’d have to close forever.  What this means for gardeners is a loss of another independent seed seller, one who carries heirloom seed varieties the big seed companies don’t, and the further shrinking of our seed supply

But what does this mean for people like readers of Under The Tuscan Gun and viewers of the cooking show, Extra Virgin, with Debi Mazar and Gabriele Corcos?

This isn’t an issue that only affects gardeners because this goes beyond just pretty flowers and extends into vegetables that are listed on Slow Food’s Ark of Taste.  Foods that are in danger of extinction. Yes, fruits and vegetables can go extinct if nobody is selling their seed, nobody is growing them. It affects the preservation of the culinary history of African-Americans. It takes down another woman-owned business. It kills part of America’s history.  We lose one more seed company acting a barrier between us and monocultures and GMOs. And one day you’ll see the effects on your dinner plate.

You can join the campaign to save America’s oldest seed company by visiting the Landreth Seeds website and ordering a catalog for $5.00.

ORDER HERE   http://www.landrethseeds.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=5689

 

If you are a blogger please reprint this on your blog and copy to Facebook and Twitter 🙂

sources:

underthetuscangun.com

steamykitchen.com

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