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    How would you change your lifestyle to start making the switch to living off the land?…Now I am not talking about changing over night.. but a progression of things you would do over time to make the switch…Remember…. It is always good to plan ahead. I think the first thing I would do is put […]
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Archive for the ‘Diatomaceous Earth’ Category

postheadericon Would you like to sell your poop?

Have you ever thought about selling your poop?.. Me either…. but when I saw the headline… “You Can Sell Your Poop For $13,000 a Year”.. I couldn’t resist clicking to read more about it.

Evidently some patients need fecal transplants to aid their digestive system. So if you are super healthy you can make the bucks….. $40.00 per sample or if your able to come in 5 days a week you can make an addition 50 bucks. Donations have to be made onsite.

A company called Open Biome has been facilitating fecal transplants to patients in need, and paying healthy poopers a hefty sum for their services. Fecal matter is transferred either through endoscopy or swallowed capsules, and Open Biome has already shipped about 2,000 treatments to almost 200 hospitals, according to the Washington Post.

You can read more about selling your poop by <<CLICKING HERE>>
Please click… because I know several of you think I am making this up

 

postheadericon No Dig Gardening

 Learn the basics to creating a no-dig organic vegetable plot. There are many benefits to organic gardening, especially when you don’t have to turn over the soil. It is far better for your soil structure – and your back…

This method of vegetable gardening is what I prefer. As you might have guessed, it doesn’t involve digging. This method is particularly suited to older people or people with physical disabilities. But I just prefer it because I think it’s better for the soil.

When soil is turned over it destroys the soil structure. When you create a no-dig plot you are not disturbing the topsoil at all, this means that the soil microbes, worms and creatures can continue doing what they do best in your garden.

For the best results in your garden, you want to aim for no compaction of the soil. Water, air and nutrients travel through the soil by pathways made by worms and plant roots. When soil is compacted these pathways are destroyed.

By designing you plots to be no more than say 1.25metres (4 feet) across (and however long you want) you can avoid having to stand in it. If you start with a small bed, (1.25m x 2.5m / 4’ x 8’) you can plan it so that you can expand when you are ready.

No matter what your location, no dig vegetable gardens are a great option for you. It means that it doesn’t matter what sort of soil you are starting out with as the layering of materials over the surface will continue to feed and condition your soil. Eventually you will end up with dark, nutrient rich soil.

A No Dig garden bed is made on top of the ground. It can be built over existing garden beds, lawns and even hard or rocky ground – even concrete. It should be situated in an area that receives at least six hours sun (preferably morning sun) a day and that has good drainage.
When preparing the plot it is not necessary to pull up lawn or an existing garden, you will be ‘smothering’ what is already there.

Building your plot
I like to install irrigation before building my plot as I find it saves me so much time and trickle irrigation (on a timer) is a far better way to water than by hand or sprinkler.
One thing to always remember when handling manures, soil or any organic matter is to always wear tough gloves to protect you from bacteria getting into any cuts. Then wash your hands thoroughly when you’re finished in the garden.
1. Form the outside walls of your plot. You can use logs, old planks, pavers, bricks, stones, sleepers etc. If you have disabilities you might want to get help with this.
2. Lay down a thick layer of wet newspaper (I use an old baby bath filled with water to soak the newspaper), making sure it completely covers the enclosed area. It should be at least 6mm (quarter inch) thick and overlap by about 75mm (3inches). This will kill off any weeds and more from growing. Only use newspaper and glossy, coloured paper has chemicals.
3. Lay down pads (or biscuits) of lucerne hay or pea straw, making sure there are no gaps between pads.
4. Add a 20mm (¾inch) layer of good organic fertilizer (chicken manure is great).
5. Cover with about 200mm (8inches) thick of loose straw.
6. Add another 20mm (¾inch) layer of good organic fertilizer (blood & bone etc).
7. Finish off with a top layer of compost, about 100mm (4inches) thick.
8. Water well and allow to settle.
9. Plant out seedlings after 2 or 3 weeks (not seeds).

Some of the benefits of creating a no-dig, raised plot include:
– can be built anywhere, any time to any design
– keeping your garden tidy, with easy access
– stops birds from scratching your mulch everywhere
– it mirrors nature by create a rich, organic environment for your plants
– once set up, it’s virtually maintenance free
– helps prevent destruction from snails, rabbits etc.

In your new garden the best veggies are potatoes, lettuce, brassicas and cucurbits (cucumber family). Root crops are better once your plot has matured.
It is better to have mixed plantings of vegetables and herbs, rather than long rows or a whole bed of one type of plant. Companion Planting benefits your garden in many ways, including pest and disease prevention and growing healthier, more vigorous plants.
Keeping your beds topped up with compost and/or mulch helps prevent weeds, retain moisture and promotes steady healthy growth.

There is also another wonderful way to garden, it too is perfect for older people because it involves little bending. Not having to crawl around on your hands and knees is always a plus. Your able to use less space than with a regular garden, and there will be very little weeding. It is called Straw Bale Gardening and you can read more about this wonderful way to garden by clicking <<HERE>>

postheadericon Companion Planting

Companion planting is the practice of using ‘old-fashioned’ methods of gardening and farming. This article discussed this process as an important part of an integrated pest management system.

Companion plantings of some kind have been practiced throughout agricultural history. Some of the earliest written documents on gardening discuss these relationships. Early settlers discovered American First Nations people were using an interplanting scheme of corn-bean-squash that balanced the requirements of each crop for light, water, and nutrients. In the 1800’s, hemp (cannabis) was often planted around a cabbage field to keep away the white cabbage butterflies in Holland. In many parts of the world today, subsistence farmers and organic gardeners grow two or more crops simultaneously in a given area to achieve a certain benefit.

Companion planting is the practice of locating particular plants near one another because they enhance plant growth, discourage pests and diseases, or have some other beneficial effect. When selecting your companion plants consider more than which pests are deterred. Think about what each plant adds or takes away from the soil and what effect the proximity of strong herbs may have on the flavor of your vegetables. Avoid placing two heavy feeders or two shallow rooted plant types near each other.

Does your garden have worms? Worms keep the garden ariated…. worms are beneficial in many other ways as well. Worms just seem to make the garden grow better… having worms in your garden is a sign of having a healthy garden. This is a great book about worms… Worms are the perfect companion for your garden. ‘The Business & Biology Of Raising Composting Worms’ is the most comprehensive and up to date guide for productive and successful worm composting.

Many gardeners find that they can discourage harmful pests, without losing the beneficial allies, when they use companion planting as an important part of an integrated pest management system. For example, chives or garlic planted between rows of peas or lettuce help control aphids. Marigolds planted throughout the garden discourage many insects. Rosemary, thyme, sage, catmint, hyssop, or mixtures of all three between rows of cabbage helps deter the white cabbage moth. Horseradish planted at the corners of potato patches deters the potato beetle. Garlic planted near roses repels aphids and Nasturtium planted around the garden also deters aphids.

As the limitations and ill effects of pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and other modern practices become more apparent, scientists and researchers have begun to look at the ‘old-fashioned’ method of gardening and farming. Companion planting can combine beauty and purpose to give you an enjoyable, healthy environment. In essence, companion planting allows us to help bring a balanced eco-system to our landscapes, allowing Nature to do its’ job.

Here is a great book about container gardening… Container Gardening Secrets

postheadericon Is Diatomaceous Earth Kosher?

candlestick-holder-152241__180I had the most unusual question this morning asked by a reader to my Facebook Page about Diatomaceous Earth (DE). Well at least I thought it was unusual… In the first place I had never thought about it before… and I had no idea why someone would ask…..The question was “Is DE Kosher”.

Since I had no idea the answer to the question.. I Googled it!… It seems that there was a lot of information about it. I found several places that used the term kosher right on their website when describing the Diatomaceous Earth that they were selling.

I was still not sure how to answer the readers question so I went to the home page of the company that supplies the DE that I promote…. Perma-Guard. After a bit of poking around I found a link on their page and found that Perma-Guard diatomaceous earth is kosher…. WHO KNEW? Certainly NOT me.

So from now on I can say with confidence…. Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth that I promote is indeed Kosher…. You can get your kosher DE here…. from the same place I do. Earth Works Health

www.perma-guard.com/analysis

postheadericon Ants Ants Ants.. Everywhere I Look There Are Ants

ant_55940I have never seen so many ants before. Do you have more ants at your house this year too? We had another very COLD winter, just like we did last year but we didn’t have all these ants last spring like we do this year. They are everywhere.

Not only am I seeing lots of ants outside but they were inside as well. You know I really don’t care if they are outside… they don’t seem to do any damage.. they are all just busy building ant hills, but I draw the line when they come in the house. I don’t want ants in the house!

Someone should of told them to skip my house if they think they are going to take up residence inside with me. I have a silent ant killer… It has no color, no odor, it is a non-poisonous powder that has the consistency of flour… heck they don’t even know they are stepping in it…but it is a real ant killer.

In fact it doesn’t kill just ants but it kills all of those crawly bugs that I can’t stand when they are in the house….. My ant killer is one of Mother Natures Best Kept Secrets…. It has been around for at least a zillion years… it is diatomaceous earth. I sprinkle it around where the ants are and when I come back about 20 minutes later I can sweep up dead ants….. Next time I come back I can sweep up more dead ants.

Of course it would be great if your able to find where they are coming from and start at the source. It is not a poison so the little buggers do have to come in contact with the powder. They are not able to build up a resistance to it since it does not work the way most ant killers do.. .Diatomaceous earth kills those buggers by slicing them and they dehydrate….. Way Cool.

But… what is even cooler is… I kill those ants and then I eat it for my good health. I also feed it to my dogs and my cats for their good health too…. You can Eat My Dirt….
Food Grade Perma-Guard Diatomaceous Earth… Gotta Love this wonderful product direct from Mother Nature.

postheadericon Diatamaceous Earth and Hemochromatosis

phlebotomy

For years I had tried to get my friend Karen to try diatomaceous earth.  She finally took that leap of faith and tried it….. she is very happy that she did. She posted about what happened when she did…. You can read the post below.
————————————————————————————–

First things first – you need a working definition:

Hemochromatosis:

Is a genetic disorder wherein the body of the person affected holds onto iron consumed resulting in iron overload.  Iron accumulates in the joints and organs and will most certainly cause death if allowed to do so.  Treatment is frequent (usually weekly) therapeutic phlebotomy (blood draining) until iron levels (ferritin) are normal, and then an ongoing maintenance and monitoring schedule  for life.  In some ways it is a blessing in disguise because hemochromatosis patients in maintenance can become regular blood donors keeping themselves healthy while saving the lives of others.  A silverlining to be certain.

However, I can assure you from experience that the initial regime is NOT pleasant.  I have scar tissue on my arm from the frequent phlebotomies that makes me look like somewhat of a junkie.  Appearance aside, there are other unpleasant side effects to having such frequent blood drains, the least of which is the inconvenience.  Unless you enjoy needles in your arm – and this is a big needle (my sister calls it a pipe), you can agree that frequent phlebotomies are something to avoid if you can.

My doctor told me there was no other way.  The only way to lower the iron stores in your blood is to remove the blood.  It is truly not possible to eat a low iron diet although most of us do try to limit our intake of iron and we usually drink tea or coffee with our meals to interfere with iron absorption.

A Little Background Info

A dear friend of mine from a small town in Michigan sent me a sample of Diatamaceous Earth, known simply as DE, to treat a bug infestation of a houseplant.  When I failed to use it and the plant died, she encouraged me to eat it myself claiming it has numerous health benefits.  I was certainly skeptical of eating the product that was sent to me to kill bugs, but after I did some research on it, I decided to give it a try… it is worth noting that this stuff sat in my cupboard for 2 years before I finally took a spoonful!

During my trial period, I can’t say that I actually noticed any improvement in my overall health.  I’m not saying that I didn’t experience better health, just that I didn’t feel it.  My ferritin had been below 50, and I had become a regular blood donor.  Either just prior to just after donating blood I get a blood test to measure my level.

On February 14, before I started taking DE, and after a blood donation, my ferritin was 44.  Acceptable.  I was scheduled for another donation 56 days later on March 28, but I wasn’t able to make it to my appointment.  I was worried that my ferritin would be soaring and that I may require a therapeutic phlebotomy in addition to a blood donation.  I went for a blood test to measure my ferritin in mid April.  I had now been consuming DE daily for about 3 weeks.  This is where things got interesting…

3 Weeks on DE and No Blood Donation…

I was shocked (and a little frightened) when I learned that my ferritin had dropped 6 points to 38 – without having shed any blood!

Where Did The Iron in My Blood Go?

My doctor had no explanation.  An ultrasound and other tests did not reveal any internal bleeding – which was my (and my doctor’s) fear.  I went online and started searching for an explanation.  What I found was that some people are using DE for chelation purposes – to remove heavy metals, such as mercury, from the body.  If it can remove mercury why not iron?  DE was the only thing that I had added to my routine.  I decided to stay off the DE for a month and retest.  If my ferritin went up, that should be an indication that it was likely the DE that brought it down.

And the Result is in…

On May 23, I had my ferritin tested and it had gone back up to 48.  Once again, my body is holding onto iron.  Now, if I was bleeding internally, or otherwise, there is no way that my ferritin would go up by such a large amount in one month.

I am now back on DE – day 2.  In 3 weeks I will retest and see if my iron drops again and will report the results here.

If you or someone you know has hemochromatosis, try it or share this post with them!

Diatamaceous Earth has many other health benefits

It addresses issues by removing toxins from the body.  Here is a partial list of issues addressed by eating DE:

  • Bacteria
  • Parasites
  • Fungi
  • Protozoa
  • Viruses (including poliovirus)
  • Endotoxins
  • Pesticide and drug residues
  • E-Coli
  • Heavy metals (including methyl mercury)
  • Proteinaceous toxins produced by some intestinal infections

While dealing with the above toxins, DE will NOT harm the beneficial bacteria (flora) in the gut.  I am no chemist, but the reason that it leaves the healthy stuff alone has to do with negative and positive charge.

It is also reported to lower blood pressure and cholesterol.  My blood pressure was quite high.  It is now in the normal range, but I cannot say for 100% that it is due to taking DE.  I am also taking Ubiquinol – which I believe is having a positive impact on my BP… more on that in another post!

This is where my friend gets her DE:
www.earthworkshealth.com

 

Original post can be found here…. bestimmunebooster.com/diatamaceous-earth-and-hemochromotosis/

postheadericon Add Diatomaceous Earth to Your Chickens Dust Bathing Area

In a recent post I told you that chickens love to take baths…. the thing is they do not use water. They take a dust bath. Just like it sounds they bathe in dirt. When you add diatomaceous earth to their bathing area it is even more beneficial to them. Taking a bath keeps the birds healthy….
Don’ they look like they are enjoying themselves?

These hens are from Little Pond Farm.. Thanks for the great video.

postheadericon What the heck is Hypertufa?

 

trough-flowersIt is the dead of winter here in Michigan…. As I look out from my window I see nothing but SNOW.. lots of snow. The shrubs are bending over with the weight of snow from the last storm that we got. We not only had snow but we also had wind… so the drifts have made the snow especially deep in some places.

It may be very cold outside but I have been busy inside where it is warm planning for SPRING. When the weather warms up I am going to make my own planters, rocks and boulders. I already know where I am going to place them. My art objects are going to be made with a method called Hypertufa.

Hypertufa is no different than making mud pies…. I have fond memories of mixing dirt and water together and putting it in molds. It was a fun way to spend an afternoon. None of those mud pies survived. Hyputfia will last many years, much longer than the pies I made when I was little…. Hypertufa is just like making mud pies except you use a base of Portland cement to hold things together. The projects or art work that you make using the process know as hypertufa is not HEAVY as if it were made on concrete…. though in most cases it is just as strong.

The porous material makes it especially good to use as planters. The appearance comes out rather rustic looking.. blending right in with nature. The sky is the limit on what your able to do with this wonderful molding material.
Making a birdbath using a huge leaf is going to me my first project this spring…

I have several pots on my front porch that I have planted with all types of different flowers and vegetables. I have had these pots for several years… this year might be the year that I will make all new pots for my container garden. You too can learn the Secret to Container Gardening just as I did by clicking here.

As with anything this is going to be a learning process. I waste so much time with my typical trial an error method.. though I must admit I like to do it that way… This time I am reading how someone else did it… offering step by step instructions and knowing what to avoid…

I can plan my projects now while I lookout at the snow… When SPRING comes I will be all ready to go.

The plan is to make the birdbath first…. but then I have to choose what to work on next..
• Troughs • Spheres • Free Form Molding • Sculpting • Rocks • Stepping Stones •
rock
This is the book I am reading Hypertufa How-To Manual by Claudia F. Brownlie

postheadericon Chicken Keeping

chicks-980803__180More and more people are keeping chickens in their backyards. As long as their is no city ordinance against doing so people are finding that is a fun thing to do. People are keeping chickens in their backyards for many different reasons. Some want a source of fresh eggs.. others may just like to watch them. I find them fascinating!

I for one have always loved the idea of keeping chickens in the backyard. Chickens don’t really require a lot of space though they do need a sheltered area. Keep in mind if you live in an area that is cold in the winter months… you really should plan of providing some type of heat for them when it is cold.

Of course you will want to provide them with plenty of fresh water and good food…you can also add diatomaceous earth (DE) to their feed. Offering your chickens DE in their feed will keep the internal parasites at bay.

Chickens love to take dirt baths. You can see them rolling around in the dirt.. kicking up the dirt with their feet and flapping their wings so that the dirt will get ALL over every inch of their bodies… When they have had enough they will stand up and shake themselves off, and strut away as if they have on a new outfit!

This dusting area would be the perfect spot to add de freely. When the chickens get into take their dust bath the added de will get down on their skin filtering through their feathers. The best part is.. it will stay there, helping to keep them pest free.

Some people like to keep chickens as 4H projects for their children. Some like to have their own fresh egg source, others just like the idea of having chickens walking around their backyard… that would be us. We adopted a couple of girls that were no longer producing eggs.. they were headed to the farmers stew pot but we intercepted and brought them home to live out their lives hunting for bugs and worms in our backyard. They were delightful girls, we got a great deal of pleasure out of watching them.

Rather than just getting a few birds and putting them in your back yard here is a book to make the most of your backyard chickens….. Chicken Keeping Secrets

postheadericon Building a Chicken Coop

If I had my way…. I would have the chickens in the house. BUT…. hubby seems to have a different idea on that subject.  There is just something about chickens that I find fascinating. Doesn’t Keeping Chickens sounds like a fun project…..?

The soft cooing of the hens… scurrying and scratching at the dirt, looking for bugs and worms. I think I could watch them all day. The boys can get a little noisy at times but them most boys can be like that.

You need the proper house for Keeping Chickens… and I would of course recommend having diatomaceous earth on hand to keep them healthy both inside and out.

Before you get your chickens you should decide about housing for them. Building the proper kind of house will be very important not only to you but also to your new brood. But…. Where do you start? What do you need to know about housing chickens. All of those questions and many more will be answered in this book Collection Of Chicken Coop Plans.

Collection Of Chicken Coop Plans offers 10 Chicken Coop Plans. I am sure that you will be able to find one that is just right for your yard and your location.
Each chicken coop design has :
~instructions for building
~list of the materials needed to build the coop
~plans and diagrams for the measurements
Use a coop design ‘As Is’ or just pick and choose the ideas you like from the collection to build your own ‘poultry palace’.

You Can Save $$$ And Get The Coop You Want
It’s true, you can save hundreds of dollars by building your coop – and sometimes build one almost for free if you use reclaimed materials – but this isn’t just about saving money by building your own coop, it is also about building the coop you want to have in your backyard, the way you want it.

Are you ready to build a haven for your hens…..? Go here to check out this wonderful Collection Of Chicken Coop Plans

If you need info about how to raise those chickens here is a wonderful resource I found…. It has lots of other information too… Not just about raising chickens. It talks about Self Sufficiency And Homesteading Products…. Including Keeping Chickens, Guinea Fowl & Other Poultry, Beekeeping (honey Bees), Herbal Remedies, Vegetable Gardening, Hydroponics & Greenhouse
poultry houses