Be Idle

...rgin olive oil, or more to taste 40 large mint leaves (a blend of spearmint and peppermint if possible) Salt and freshly ground black pepper 1 pound linguine, spaghetti, bucatini, or other string pasta 6 quarts boiling salted water 1 1/3 pint baskets (1 pound) flavorful cherry tomatoes, quartered 1. Mix the cooled toasted nuts. Coarsely chop about one quarter of them and set aside. 2. In a mortar (a processor is second choice), pound (or grind)...

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How To Stop Powdery Mildew

...ed advice from UC Davis’ Integrated Pest Management page: Preventative measures: grow resistant varieties find a sunnier spot for the vegetable garden back off on nitrogen Non-chemical approaches sprinkle plants with water mid morning–add soap for more effectiveness remove infected leaves promptly and dispose of them Fungicides: apply horticultural oil, neem oil or jojoba oil if the temperature is under 90° F. Do not apply any of...

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Drought-Proof your Landscape with Greywater Lecture

...putting on a laundry to landscape workshop on February 22. Here’s the info on the first of the two events. For more information go to greywatercorps.com/whatwscurrent.html. Interested in Reusing Greywater? Greywater is water from sinks, showers, and washing machines. Instead of sending it down the sewer it can be safely and simply redirected into the landscape for irrigation. Reusing household greywater saves water, saves time, and reduces...

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How To Force Carbonate at Home

...$150 to $200 to put together a system like this one. Tank Tanks come in different sizes. The home brew shop I went to had 20 pound tanks so that’s what I went with. A 20 pound tank will carbonate around 1,000 liters of water. There’s considerable controversy on the interwebs about the kinds of tanks and CO2 you can use. Some say that welding and paintball tanks have lubricants that you don’ t want to drink. And gas comes in dif...

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Saturday Linkages: Goat Wars, Dinites and a Sanitary Pad Revolution

...n-the-oce/ … Pay phone booth re-purposed as a tiny library – Unconsumption http://disq.us/8hkfz6  Avoiding pollution, drought’s evil twin http://chanceofrain.com/2014/02/avoiding-pollution-droughts-evil-twin/ … A Simple Solar Water Heating System for the Tropics… http://www.builditsolarblog.com/2014/03/a-simple-solar-water-heating-system-for.html?spref=tw … A Solar Heated Loo http://www.builditsolarblog.com/2014/02/a-solar-heated-loo.html?s...

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Return of Bean Friday: Spicy Mayocoba Beans

...poon salt1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon7 oz. can chopped jalapenos *I had no chili powder so used lots of paprika plus a little bit of cayenne pepper as a substitute Put the beans in a big pot, cover them with a couple of inches of water and simmer until tender. When the beans are getting close to done, heat some oil in a deep skillet or a heavy bottomed pot and saute the onion until translucent. Then add the garlic and the rest of the spices, reservin...

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California’s Drought and What To Do About It

By this summer, due to the worst drought in memory, California will resemble the desert planet Arakis in Frank Herbert’s novel Dune. Not only will we be watering our lawns less, we’ll be drinking our own urine. Knife fights with a bikini clad Sting will break out and we’ll be trading our bikes for rides on the over-sized worms emerging from our compost bins. But I digress. Let’s cover what we’re doing at the Root S...

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How To Manage a Compost Pile Using Temperature

...r of advantages: You can make sure that the pile does not get too hot. Above 160° F  you start to kill off the thermophilic bacteria that decompose your pile. To decrease temperature you turn and add more carbon material and water. Washington State University recommends subjecting all of the pile to temperatures above 150° F to kill potential pathogens. I’m fairly certain that, with the turn I did at day 14, all of the pile got up to 150°F...

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Eight Things to Consider When Saving Vegetable Seeds

...want to save seed from need to be harvested well past when they’re still edible. 7. Prepping seeds In general, seeds harvested when dry, such as lettuce need to be air dried before storing. Seeds harvested wet, such as watermelons, need to be washed with water before drying and storing. Tomato seeds need to be fermented in water for a few days before drying. 8. Storage Moisture is the enemy of seed storage. Those packs of desiccant that c...

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Composting the Deceased/ My DIY Funeral Fantasies

...17;ll predecease me. Fantasy 1:  A longstanding fantasy is that I be disposed of “Viking style”, i.e., being laid out in a boat (a rowboat would do, seeing as Viking longboats are hard to come by) and burnt on the water with Led Zeppelin’s Immigrant Song cranked in the background. Skál! But now I know two things. One is that the Vikings buried their dead in boats–they did not burn them. Probably because that method wouldn&...

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