Bare Root Fruit Tree Season is Here!

Yet another Internet “un-boxing.” This time fruit trees. Our bare root fruit tree order just arrived from Bay Laurel Nursery. We ordered: Tropic Snow Peach on Nemaguard rootstock Panamint Nectarine on Citation rootstock CoffeeCake (Nishimura Wase) Persimmon Saijo Persimmon (pollinator for CoffeeCake) Flavor Finale Pluot on Myrobalan 29C rootstock Santa Rosa Plum on Citation rootstock (pollinator for the Flavor Finale Pluot...

Continue reading…

Dumpster Herb Score

...m potted mums. (Joes really needs to start a composting program, don’t you think?) We sorted through the cart and found four potted herbs, only slightly distressed. One was a lemon balm, which I’ve wanted for some time. The others, I admit, I don’t really need (because I already have them), and don’t have any space for–but I’ll squeeze them in somehow. In this way, I’m like a crazy cat woman. ETA: This mo...

Continue reading…

Why Did We Change Our Name?

...remains still …. and … you cannot step twice into the same stream.” as Hereclitus says. The publishing and blogging world is getting a bit crowded in the “urban homesteading” category. It’s time to expand the conversation and explore some new home ec related topics. We don’t want to become stale. Having a new book coming out later this spring, Making It: Radical Home Ec for a Post-Consumer World , also ma...

Continue reading…

Avocados

...ause leaves to turn brown at the tips and poor fruit production. In fact if the first rain of the season is less than 3 inches, you should irrigate to flush out salts that build up during the dry season. Avocados take a long time to ripen on the tree–12 months or more depending on variety. For additional reading Stucky recommended the following internet resources: Avocadosource.com California Avocado Society California Avocado Commission...

Continue reading…

Strange brew: herbal steam for a chest cold and sinus pain

...few juniper berries. I had no dried eucalyptus. Eucalyptus has that nice, lung-opening menthol action which is hard to replace. Fortunately, I had some eucalyptus essential oil and would add one drop of it to the water each time I went into the tent. From now on I’m going to be sure to have eucalyptus essential oil on hand at all times. On steam round two, I wanted to freshen the mix and had no more dried sage or juniper, so I added a big...

Continue reading…

My Sooper Seekrit Compost Pile

...ngs, obviously.  I’d dump the pail in there, and cover the scraps with handfuls of hay or dry leaves. Sometimes the level would raise high, but this stuff shrinks fast, so it maintained a level one tire deep most of the time, and would have done so until compost started building up at the bottom. Eventually I would have put the top tire on the ground and shoveled the contents of the bottom tire into the top tire, basically turning everyth...

Continue reading…

I like my chamomile stressed

...ile from volunteer plants in my yard. I never planted or tended them, but one or two would get about knee high, and from those one or two plants I’d gather all the flowers I needed by remembering to pick a handful every time I went in the back yard. The thing about chamomile is the more you pick, the more it produces. But I was greedy–and somewhat lazy, as usual. I thought, why be out there every day milking some scrappy chamomile pl...

Continue reading…

A Fast Bean Friday: Khichdi

...the body, yes, but it does take longer to cook. Since khichidi is what we make when we’re starving and want food fast, we’ve been using white rice. If you use brown rice you’ll want to adjust the cooking time and water accordingly.)  The details are where you get to swing. The details are both the vegetables and the spices. These you can add as you please. Veggies: This is your chance to use up whatever you have in your fr...

Continue reading…

Have any ideas? We’re rewriting the anniversary gift list

...ould be built around that. The second option is the experience list. What sort of skills and knowledge make up a self-reliant household–and a good relationship? How would you prioritize that knowledge on a year by year time line? Can we think of 50? And maybe there’s a third option–feel free to toss out anything you like....

Continue reading…