Make a Brigid’s Cross

...used some broom corn*, which didn’t result in a symmetrical effect that reeds give, but is sort of cute in its own way.  (FYI for you southerners: I tried palm fronds first, but they were too slippery. And seeing me trying to weave with them gave Erik flashbacks to Sunday school!) *No, I haven’t made my broom yet! I’m hung-up on getting some nylon cordage in a decent color. For some reason our hardware store only stocks it in fl...

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Comrades

...i Solomon Back to Basics Homestead Backwards Beekeepers Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds Blog Bikejuju BLD in MT Build It Solar Blog ClubOrlov Coco’s Variety Store Collected Quotidian CoMo Homestead Deaf Dogs and Gnomes Dinosaurs and Robots Dirt Time DIY From Scratch Dornob Dough on the Go! Dude Craft Elon Schoenholz Faultline Farm Five Gallon Ideas Food in Jars Garden Rant Gary Nabhan Green Roof Growers Grounded Design Heirloom Broccoli Hen Cam...

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Water Conservation

...scussing what we call BOC, or boring old conservation. So before delving into greywater and rainwater harvesting it’s time to assess where your household is in terms of water consumption and see if that level can be reduced. It’s generally far easier and less expensive to conserve resources than it is to resort to the latest techno-eco-gadgetry. So let’s count down the major sources of domestic water use (according to percentage...

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The High Cost of Golf

...gh I’m partial to my Xtracycle cargo bike, once in a while I’ll rent a pickup truck to haul some big items. Yesterday it was time to get a bunch of straw bales to use as bedding for the chickens. While driving by a public golf course on the way to the feed store, the windshield suddenly shattered startling me and my passenger, Ari of Islands of LA, who had come along to help out. Instictively, we ducked thinking that someone was shoo...

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Using Greywater from your Washing Machine

...water through pipes. The tank also slows down the flow of water going out to the garden, allowing more time for it to percolate into the soil. In addition the tank lets the water cool a bit, should we run a load in hot water. Bottom of barrel showing fittings Top of the barrel where the hose from the washing machine comes in For the tank we picked up a used and cleaned 55 gallon plastic drum with two “bung holes”, and plumbed it...

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Rapini!

...rabe, from our illegal parkway garden. Broccoli rabe or rapini, is often described as being bitter, but I think it would be better to describe store bought broccoli as band and rapini as “flavorful”. Actually rapini is not related to the broccoli plant and is instead more closely related to turnips. The variety we planted is called Cima di Rapa Quarantina and is available from growitalian.com. Thanks Los Angeles for not enforcing you...

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Dog Cheese

...ket full of dog milk. We’ve already proved that a decent Neufchâtel can be produced in a home kitchen with store bought cow’s milk and bottle of rennet (which curdles the milk). Improvising on the same recipe we managed to turn that gallon or so of dog milk into a soft farmhouse-type round of what we believe to be a first . . . dog cheese. The taste? It is full bodied, and a little musky at first whiff, but salting the cheese really b...

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Roundup

...in rats, as indicated by the leakage of intracellular liver enzymes. The research indicates that glyphosate and its surfactant in Roundup were found to act in synergy to increase damage to the liver. UPDATE BY CHEE YOKE HEONGRoundup Ready weedkiller is one of the most widely used weedkillers in the world for crops and backyard gardens. Roundup, with its active ingredient glyphosate, has long been promoted as safe for humans and the environment w...

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Escape from LA

Sometimes in order to survive LA you’ve gotta escape it, which is why we are headed to Santa Rosa Island, part of the Channel Islands National Park, tomorrow for a weekend of backpacking and general self-sufficiency. We’re going in part to experience what the landscape of Southern California would have been like had it not been fucked up by freeways, strip malls and Spearmint Rhino billboards to name just a few of the many indignitie...

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iBullshit

It’s amazing how insidious is the real religion of our age, brand allegiance. In the PC vs. Mac argument I often find myself, unconscious and zombie-like, coming to the defense of a company run by a turtle neck wearing multi-billionaire. Sweater wear aside, Apple’s got a lot to answer for on the environmental front. In a provocative earth day post, bike-riding comrade and Apple store employee Mikey Wally calls out Apple for their gre...

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