Making Salves, Lip Balms & etc.: Close of the Calendula Series

...f bowl balanced over a sauce pan, etc. What I usually do is put a Pyrex liquid measuring cup into a small pan of water. I set the burner on to medium heat and bring the water to a very gentle simmer. Thus the oil heats without overheating or burning. To the oil I add a little bit of organic beeswax, and continue to heat and stir until the beeswax dissolves. That’s all there is to it, really, but I’ll explain the details. First, let...

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011 Cleaning, Long Crowing Roosters and Water Storage

...f long crowing roosters. Musical break “Banty Rooster Blues” by Charley Patton. Listener  Question: Water Storage for Emergencies A correction to the podcast–the Food Safety Advisor is not free to download, but the information on water storage that I reference can be found here. Amazon link to the water storage container we use. If you want to leave a question for the Root Simple Podcast please call (213) 537-2591 or send an em...

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Make a Sourdough Starter

...ups of starter. Don’t use metal. 2. Put into this container one cup of white flour and one cup of lukewarm water and stir until mixed. Put it in a warm place. We use the top of our stove which has a pilot light. 3. Every day, pour off one cup of your starter and add a half cup of white flour and a half cup of lukewarm water. 4. Your starter should begin to get bubbly in a few days. A layer of liquid, known in sourdough fetish circles as &#...

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Salvia Means Salvation: White Sage

...rned thoughtlessly, like incense, because it is their most sacred plant. A better use for white sage is in your water bottle.  Cecilia recommended that we (the class, aka people with interest in plant healing) drop a single white sage leaf (dry or fresh) into our water bottles and so drink a bit of its essence every day. She uses does this herself and takes it further, keeping a leaf in the 1 gallon bottles she uses for cooking, as well as in he...

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Bucket Flushing

SurviveLA is researching greywater systems and today we’ve got our first tip on recycling your water. First a definition. Greywater is the waste water that comes out of your shower, sinks, and washing machine. Blackwater is the icky stuff that comes out of your toilet and because of the risk of contamination it should not be reused. For now we’ll lump the kitchen sink in with the toilet since food scraps, particularly for meat eaters...

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A Fast Bean Friday: Khichdi

...d, is all you really have to remember–the rest is improvised: The ratio of lentils to rice is 1:2, and the water is twice the measure of the rice and lentils. For example, for two servings, I’d combine 1 cup of rice and 1/2 cup lentils. That’s 1 1/2 cups total of dry stuff. That means I’d need 3 cups of water. The basic cooking methodology is to first rinse your lentils and rice, then lightly saute up the onion and spices...

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Using Greywater from your Washing Machine

...o prevent the built-in pump in the washing machine from burning out, which might happen if you tried to pump the 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 t...

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Planting a Mini-Orchard

...that Lake Mead could go dry by 2013 we figured it was about time to figure out how to grow food with very little water in a Mediterranean climate that gets on average 15 inches of rain a year (3 inches last year). Our water worries sparked the beginnings of our draught tolerant mini-orchard. Thankfully greywater and some tough, water sipping trees make it possible. Step one was figuring out how to reuse our washing machine water (read our earlier...

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Cleaning the Sink with Baking Soda and Lemons

...The trick to using it effectively is to not use it in a very wet environment. Baking soda dissolves quickly in water, unlike some scouring cleansers. Don’t try to use it in standing water, or even with a very wet sponge.  For it to work well, it has to be on the dry side. If my sink is wet, I’ll run a towel over it to get most of the water out before scrubbing. Use a generous amount of baking soda.  See the lumps and clumps f...

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

...m to ease congestion, whether that be in a hot shower, a steam room or by tenting a towel over a bowl of boiling water. What I’m going to talk about here is the bowl technique, tricked up by spiking the water with powerful healing herbs. My inspiration came from the book by well-known herb expert, Stephen Harrod Buhner called Herbal Antibiotics: Natural Alternatives for Treating Drug-Resistant Bacteria . It’s a slender, informative b...

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