No-Knead Artisinal Bread Part I

...ore. In the meantime, this is the general way I’ve been baking. All the mixing and first fermentation can take place in a plastic tub or large bowl. 1. The night before I mix my dough I take some starter, add flour and water to create the “levain”. Starter is made by mixing dough and water and letting nature do her thing. I’ll blog about the process in detail in a future post. Right now I’m working with a starter t...

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June: National Bathroom Reading Month

...king of our congress, senate or president. Nevertheless we thought we’d celebrate bathroom reading month anyways with a look at what journals, catalogs and books grace the Homegrown Evolution throne room reading stack. Water Quality Report ’07 from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. Every year we get this and pledge we’ll study up on the science behind water quality. Another year has passed and all we can critique a...

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My Brand New Homebrew Soda Carbonator

...maybe?) on how to put together the parts, and how to use it. So hold on for those details! Right now, I’m just going to gush. I’ve been wanting something like this for a long time, because I use a lot of sparkling water. For various health reasons I drink very little caffeine and almost no alcohol and I try to avoid sugary drinks as well, so that leaves me with a total drinks menu of water, herbal teas, sparkling water and for big thr...

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Can our landscapes model a vibrant future? Not according to the LA DWP.

California is suffering from drought. In Los Angeles, we’ve experienced back to back two of the driest winters on record (winter is our rainy season). Last year’s rainfall total was under 6 inches. The governor has asked California residents to cut their water use by 20%.  Apparently, we’ve only managed to cut it by 5%. There’s a strange sense of unreality about the drought. I think that’s because we’re just...

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How to Deal with Extremely Root Bound Plants

...ble. I only had time for a couple of bad shots. How to Save Root Bound Plants First off, I’ve found that root bound plants are often dehydrated plants, because the pots are mostly full of roots, making the soil hard and water repellant. If this is so, it helps to give the plants a good soaking before you un-pot them by placing them in a bucket of water for a few minutes. Method A) Mildly root bound plants can be helped along by gently massa...

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Organic Seed Growers Webinar

...risk of producing and distributing contaminated seed lots. Learn about managing diseases in seed production with various research examples from the vegetable seed crop pathology program at Washington State University, and hot water treatment for seed-borne diseases. Speakers: Lindsey du Toit, Washington State University – Mount Vernon Research & Extension Center; Jody Lew-Smith, High Mowing Organic Seeds...

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Looking for the Union Label

We’ve got a bad case of Ohrwurm, a German expression translated as “earworm” and used to describe a song stuck in your head. Our earworm came after a search for union made socks and underwear on the internets recalled a highly catchy ad jingle from the roller disco era, “Look for the Union Label” (youngsters can watch it on youtube here). We looked for the union label and we were surprised to find it via a company c...

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Outdoor Sink Makes Water Recycling Simple

This is my new outdoor sink. I found the cast iron sink on the side of the road in Pomona and gleefully dragged the heavy beast several hundred yards to my car. I had a frame built for it out of scrap wood lying around the yard, the faucet and pipes came from another discarded sink, and we hooked it up to the hose outlet. It drains into a simple 5 gallon bucket which I can then pour out into the nearby landscape. It is super simple grey water. N...

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Propagating herbs via cuttings

...nts, but in this case in particular it would be disastrous because they’d disintegrate in the constant moisture, and/or attract mold.) –A bottle of rooting hormone powder (available at nurseries) –A glass of water –A small dish or tray –A plastic bag or two, or a plastic lid for your tray, or some plastic bottles. See below –Maybe a spray bottle full of water–for watering later How to to do it: This is y...

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Your Essential Oil Toolkit

...ops with a cheaper, nuetral oil (olive oil will do) and massage it into the skin to ease tired, aching muscles. Try the same thing for sunburn. Put a few drops in your hot bath to unwind Lean over a steam bowl filled with hot water and a few drops of lavender for headaches, sinus problems, or just a really bad cold. Pass a bottle around the car on a long trip when everyone is getting fractious, or use it on your own to survive your commute. Sniff...

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