Gardening by the Moon

Planting a garden using the phases of the moon is a method of cultivation as old as agriculture itself. For centuries, farming records show a reliance on using the proper phase of the moon for timing planting, crop maintenance and harvesting.  Astrology and it’s symbolic figures were used as guides for many parts of everyday life including planting, harvesting, raising, butchering meats, and even marrying. The Farmer’s Almanac, still published today, includes these directions along with a long range weather forecast and suggestions for other life activities. This old style knowledge provides a schedule for planting that we can use just as gardeners in days passed. Today it is referred to as “Biodynamic Gardening.” 1
As the moon revolves around the earth the sun’s light creates a changing shape or phase of the moon as seen from earth. The earth’s gravity is affected by both the sun, moon and planets. The ocean tides are highest during a full moon, when the sun and moon are lined up with the earth.  Our forefathers believed that as the moon draws the tides, it also draws upon all water, causing moisture to swell up in the earth promoting growth. This is the best time to plant.

Moon phases

Gardening By Moon Phases

  1. New moon to first quarter – This is the time to plant above ground crops; those you can see. Examples are cabbage, celery, broccoli, brussels sprouts, asparagus, grains, leeks, celery, lettuce, spinach, parsley, cauliflower.
  2. First quarter to full moon – At this time you would plant above ground crops that you can see that have seed within a fruit or pod, and flowers. Examples are tomatoes, peppers, beans, melons, cucumbers, beans, squash.
  3. Full moon to last quarter – This is when you plant root crops, bulbs, perennials and biennials. The idea is that these plants need strong roots. Examples are onion, turnips, garlic, carrots, beets and radishes.
  4. Last quarter to new moon – If you have to plant during this time, it must be in a fruitful sign such as Scorpio, Pisces, Cancer, Taurus, Libra or Capricorn. If you need to weed, or cultivate, do it in a barren sign like Virgo, Leo, Aquarius, Gemini, Sagittarius or Aries. Harvest in Aquarius, Gemini, Leo, Aries, or Sagittarius. 2

Our Moon zooms around the Zodiac wheel while visiting each of the 12 signs in only 28 and a quarter days, thus having to change into a different astrological sign every 2-3 days. With the understanding that each of our 12 signs are categorized into the 4 elements of fire, earth, air and water- this is the basis of how one can determine what sign the Moon is passing through is the best one to plant under to make sure that a successful harvest will be the end result. Moon phase gardening has been around a long time. It is worth trying if you haven’t yet.    Learn More

Billie Nicholson, Editor
January 2015

References

1.   http://www.moongrow.com/moon_phase_gardening.html
2.   http://www.vegetablegardener.com/item/10141/using-moon-phases-as-a-planting-guide

 

Our January 2015 issue of “Every Needful Thing”  also includes:

The Motivation Factor

The Magic of the Side by Stephen D. Palmer

9 Simple Tips to Prevent Antibiotic Resistance by Gaye Levy

How Many Plastic Bags Do You Use?

and from Our Solar Chef - Vegetarian Chickpea Curry Pie

Don’t miss our January Special on case lots of fuel disks for your Cube Stove

The Motivation Factor

Happy New Year 2015

As we begin a new year, have you made a plan for 2015? Did you know you could? Yes, you can! This may seem like a mammoth task, but not if you take the planning in phases, by topics or even by time. What are your plans and obligations for January, February and March? What parts of your life do you want to change? Motivation for change can come in a variety of ways. Are we solving a problem or trying to eliminate an unwanted situation? These motivations seldom are successful. Why not focus on something that you desire – a positive outcome.

The first step is a personal evaluation. Once you know where you are, then you can begin setting goals.The difference between our desired goals and our actual state creates a structural tension, which strives for resolution. This requires tracking your actions. Keep those records.

As you work through this process, you will have to make choices. A primary choice is something we want more than something else. Secondary choices involve the actions we take to support the primary choice. Sometimes, we have to make secondary choices that we don’t want to do, but we do them because these actions influence the outcome of the primary choice. We learn to have internal conversations with ourselves. If you will have these conversations, you will become more aware of what you’re doing when you make these choices. This is powerful, you move out of the mindless behavior stage and into one where the consequences of your actions have a meaning. The relationship between primary and secondary choices provides us with the key to discipline. With this understanding you will be able to accomplish more than you ever imagined. In 2015, Go for it!

Billie Nicholson, Editor
January 2015

Our January 2015 issue of “Every Needful Thing”  also includes:

The Magic of the Side by Stephen D. Palmer

9 Simple Tips to Prevent Antibiotic Resistance by Gaye Levy

Gardening by the Moon

How Many Plastic Bags Do You Use?

and from Our Solar Chef - Vegetarian Chickpea Curry Pie

Don’t miss our January Special on case lots of fuel disks for your Cube Stove

How Many Plastic Bags Do You Use?

Plastic Bags

photo by Rusty Buggy Enterprises

One-time use plastic bags have been around for over 50 years. Introduced as a convenience for shoppers and as an alternative to using paper, to save trees, plastic bags have become a worldwide nuisance, littering the countryside, backing up drains and sewers and becoming a hazard to animals and marine life. They have become the major component of garbage floating in the ocean currents.1

Plastic Bag Fact Sheet

The Earth Policy Institute has provided a Plastic Bag Fact Sheet filled with facts you need to know in order to understand what is coming soon to communities near you.

  • Worldwide, a trillion single-use plastic bags are used each year, nearly 2 million per minute.
  • The amount of energy required to make 12 plastic shopping bags could drive a car for a mile.
  • Currently 100 billion plastic bags pass through the hands of U.S. consumers every year – almost one bag per person each day. Laid end to end, they would circle the equator 1,330 times.
  • Livestock choking on plastic bags – from camels in the United Arab Emirates to sheep in Mauritania and cattle in India and Texas – have led communities to consider regulation.
  • City, state and national governments around the world are trying to limit plastic bag litter and waste with bans and fees.
  • Denmark was the first country to pass a plastic bag tax in 1993. Danes use very few light-weight plastic bags – about 4 per person each year.
  • At least 16 African countries have announced bans on certain types of plastic bags, to varying levels of effectiveness. Before a ban on thin bags, which tear easily and get caught by the wind, went into effect in 2003, plastic bags were christened South Africa’s “national flower” because of their prevalence in bushes and trees. Thicker bags are taxed.
  • Many European countries tax plastic bags or ban free distribution. The EU Parliament is discussing measures that would require member states to cut plastic bag use by 80% by 2019. A memo on the proposal noted “plastic bags have been found in stomachs of several endangered marine species,” including various turtles and porpoises, and 94% of North Sea birds.
  • The provinces of Ontario and Quebec have each halved their plastic bag use through a variety of measures, including store incentives for using reusable bags and retailer imposed fees.
  • The plastics industry has spent millions of dollars to challenge plastic bag ordinances.
  • Over 150 U.S. cities and counties ban or require fees for plastic bags. California passed the first statewide ban in 2014.
  • Washington, D.C., was the first U.S. city to require food and alcohol retailers to charge customers 5¢ for each plastic or paper bag. Proceeds are shared between stores and environmental clean-ups.
  • The Clean Air Council reports that less than 1% of plastic bags are recycled each year and the cost for recycling one ton costs $4,000 and the recycled product can be sold for only $32.2

Are you one of the 49 million Americans living in communities that have banned plastic bags?

Billie Nicholson, Editor
January 2015

References 

1.  http://business-ethics.com/2010/04/10/0957-does-banning-plastic-bags-help-the-environment/
 2.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/18/plastic-bag-bans_n_3769826.html

 

Our January 2015 issue of “Every Needful Thing”  also includes:

The Motivation Factor

The Magic of the Side by Stephen D. Palmer

9 Simple Tips to Prevent Antibiotic Resistance by Gaye Levy

Gardening by the Moon

and from Our Solar Chef - Vegetarian Chickpea Curry Pie

Don’t miss our January Special on case lots of fuel disks for your Cube Stove

 

Contributions to a Food Bank

Food BankGenerosity during the holidays often includes contributions to food banks. Do you think about contributing something healthy? One in seven Americans visited a food pantry in 2013 according to Feeding America. These include elderly, single parents, returning veterans, and the recently released incarcerated. These are human beings whose hard times have forced them to choose between paying the electricity bill or buying food. Many may be suffering from medical problems related to diet. As you consider contributing to a food bank to help feed the needy this holiday season, include nutrient rich, non-perishable food. Here is a list suggested by Super Food Drive.

Grains

  1. Brown or Wild Rice
  2. Quinoa or Cous-cous
  3. Wheat Berries, Amaranth
  4. Steel cut or rolled Oats
  5. Whole Wheat or Brown Rice Pasta
  6. Whole Grain Cereals  (5 grams fiber)

Proteins

  1. Canned Cold Water Fish – water packed: (Tuna, Sardines or Wild Salmon)
  2. Canned Beans & Legumes: (Black Beans, Garbanzo, Adzuki, Kidney, Lentils)
  3. Seeds and Nuts – unsalted: (Pumpkin, Sunflower, Almonds, Walnuts, Cashews)
  4. Nut Butters – natural & non-hydrogenated:  (Almond, Peanut, Macadamia or Tahini butter)

Fruit and Vegetables

  1. Canned Fruit and Vegetables – low sodium and packed in water not syrup
  2. Dried Fruits – no added sugar: (Blueberries, Prunes, Cranberries, Apples, Mangos
  3. Canned Soups – low sodium
  4. Low sodium sauces like Tomato and Alfredo

Herbs & Spices

  1. Green and White Tea
  2. Herbs & Spices – to flavor beans and grains: Oregano, Basil, Black Pepper, Garlic Powder, Rosemary, Thyme, Dill, Ginger and Cinnamon)

Cooking Oils

  1. Olive oil
  2. Coconut oil
  3. Canola oil
  4. Sesame Oil

 

Share the Joy of the holiday season: Include a copy of your favorite recipe for making a meal using the items you donate.

Billie Nicholson, Editor
December, 2014

This month’s issue includes:

  • During our conversations with Pearl Harbor Survivors, they continued to warn us of the importance of being prepared – on every level, from our national military down to each individual. During World War II, everyone sacrificed to insure that world peace would be restored.
  • Mama’s Last Gift ~ Who would expect 33 year old jelly to be any good? The jelly was firm and no crystallization or mold was apparent. A taste test confirmed the goodness within.
  • Preparing for a Pandemic ~ A pandemic is basically a global epidemic. Learn how to protect your family should a viral sickness begin to spread around the world.

Persimmon Leather

Persimmon leatherPersimmons are a sweet and delicious fruit filled with vitamins and minerals. They contain anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory, anti-viral and anti-aging compounds. Persimmons are known to help soothe sore throats and irritated digestive tracts. They’re good for colds, constipation, viral infections and acid reflux.

Persimmon tea is a well known acid reflux remedy that can be made by combining 2 quarts of water, 3 cinnamon sticks, and 1/2 cup of thinly sliced fresh ginger into a pot and simmering for 30-60 minutes. When done, remove the cinnamon sticks & ginger from pot and add 1 cup of dried persimmons. Allow the dried persimmons to soak in tea and store entire mixture in the fridge for up to a week. Sip 1/2 cup of this liquid 1-3 times day to stop and prevent symptoms of acid reflux from reoccurring.

There are two popular varieties of persimmons: Hachiyas and Fuyus. Hachiya persimmons have a tear drop shape and must be fully ripe, almost to a pudding, jelly-like consistency before eating. When Hachiya persimmons are fully ripe, they are decadently sweet and are prized around the world for their flavor and health benefits. Fuyu persimmons are hard and crisp like an apple and they can be eaten out of hand or peeled and sliced into pieces. Fuyu persimmons are also delicious dried and are a chewy snack that can help curb your appetite while being packed with energy. Both varieties can be used in a bread recipe much like zucchini or bananas. They add nutritional and healing benefits to your diet.

Billie Nicholson, Editor
December, 2014

Persimmon leather

Persimmon leather

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This month’s issue includes:

  • During our conversations with Pearl Harbor Survivors, they continued to warn us of the importance of being prepared – on every level, from our national military down to each individual. During World War II, everyone sacrificed to insure that world peace would be restored.
  • Mama’s Last Gift ~ Who would expect 33 year old jelly to be any good? The jelly was firm and no crystallization or mold was apparent. A taste test confirmed the goodness within.
  • Preparing for a Pandemic ~ A pandemic is basically a global epidemic. Learn how to protect your family should a viral sickness begin to spread around the world.
  • Deer hunting season is a highlight of the winter months. Here is our favorite recipe made in the Sun Oven®. Served with warm Artisan bread, this makes a hearty meal in any weather.
  • Generosity during the holidays often includes contributions to food banks. Think about contributing something healthy in your Food Bank Contribution.

Mama’s Last Gift

As a child growing up on a farm in Virginia, we learned to grow our own food as well as raise a cash crop. Our Mom spent many hours working with us to harvest and preserve food. As she aged, Mom slowly reduced the items she preserved, but still kept making some of those things like jellies. After she passed away in 2008, my sisters and I were clearing out the household goods. In my stash were two jars of jelly, which I saved, probably because she had made them more than that I expected to eat them someday. Mama grew up during the depression and didn’t waste anything, including jelly jars. The two I brought home were old 40 oz., JIF  Peanut butter jars, with the labels still attached, which she used for the jelly, put up in 1981. Who would expect 33 year old jelly to be any good?

The other day I went looking for a jar of jelly and decided to open one of those old jars. Well, shut my mouth. When I opened that jelly, it was “goood.” The seal was sound and there was no pitting or etching of the inside lid. The jelly was firm and no crystallization or mold was apparent. An initial taste test confirmed the goodness within. We toasted homemade bread, buttered it and slathered it with Mama’s homemade goodness.

One jar was made from Scuppernong grapes, which Daddy would have received in trade for watermelons or canteloupe. The other jar was wild berries which he would have gathered on our farm. Some of Mama’s favorite memories were of Daddy, grinning from ear to ear just like a kid, as he walked across the back yard with his baseball cap filled with blackberries.

Mama's Last Gift

A 40 oz. jar of jelly was too big to handle. We decided to divide it into smaller containers. While we were at it, we sterilized new jars and lids and heated the jelly to boiling and reprocessed them in a water bath without adding additional pectin. Each of these large jars made three 12 oz. new jars.  The USDA recommends using home canned items within one year, so I’m not encouraging anyone to do this.

As we enjoyed the homemade bread and jelly,  I remembered my mother. Throughout her life she unselfishly gave of her time, experience and values. It was wonderful to be wrapped in Mama’s arms one more time with her last gift.

Billie Nicholson, Editor
December, 2014

This month’s issue includes:

  • During our conversations with Pearl Harbor Survivors, they continued to warn us of the importance of being prepared – on every level, from our national military down to each individual. During World War II, everyone sacrificed to insure that world peace would be restored.

  • Preparing for a Pandemic ~ A pandemic is basically a global epidemic. Learn how to protect your family should a viral sickness begin to spread around the world.
  • Generosity during the holidays often includes contributions to food banks. Think about contributing something healthy in your Food Bank Contribution.

Preparing for a Pandemic

Community Emergency Response Team

What is a pandemic?

A pandemic is basically a global epidemic — an infectious disease that spreads rapidly to a large population in more than one continent.1 For example, influenza or ebola are highly contagious viruses. Two main features of any pandemic are:

  1. The virus is a new strain that has never infected people before, like the swine or avian flu in recent years, infecting a population which has no immunity to it.
  2. The infections spread on a global scale with a high mortality rate.2

Viruses can live on hard surfaces for up to eight (8) hours. Your exposure to sick people can increase the possibility of catching the disease. During the winter season, viral infection increases due to the low humidity in the air. This allows the germs to remain airborne longer.3 The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends keeping a 6 foot buffer from sick people to cut down on the spread of disease.

Research shows anxiety and stress can weaken your immune system leaving you more vulnerable to infections.  Smoking cigarettes weakens the tiny disease-fighting hairs tucked inside the nasal passages and the lungs, which trap and dispose of germs. Drinking large quantities of alcohol in a short period of time weakens the immune system as well as dehydrating a person reducing the nose and throat’s ability to trap germs in mucus.4

Seasonal flu symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Coughing and/or sore throat
  • Runny of stuffy nose
  • Headaches and/or body aches
  • Chills
  • Fatigue

Swine or Avian Flu Symptoms include:

  • All the seasonal symptoms PLUS
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea (exception – children)
  • Can be fatal

What to do when a pandemic is predicted?

Build a pandemic kit: to minimize germ/virus spread, care-givers should limit physical exposure to the contagious elements like body fluids.

  • Disposable hooded Tyvek suits with elastic wrists ankles and non-skid socks
  • Safety Goggles
  • N95-100 particulate respirator
  • Nitrile gloves
  • Liquid bandage spray protects against infection and helps wounds heal quicker
  • Anti microbial wipes to prevent the spread of germs and maintain  sanitary conditions
  • Tissue packs to contain mucus and sneezing and coughing spray
  • Trash bags for sanitary disposal of waste and used protective clothing
  • Antiseptic hand sanitizer gel can be used if access to good old soap and water isn’t available
  • Plastic sheeting is suggested to provide a separation between the sick and the not sick
  • Duct tape to use with the plastic sheeting

Acquire medication: to provide some comfort for fevers and congestion

  • Elderberry juice is a natural flu med, clinically proven to reduce the length of flu sickness – for a sick person: 1-3 Tbs every 4-6 hours; as an immune boost: 1-2 Tbs daily
  • Tylenol/ibuprofen for fever and aches and pain reduction 
  • Decongestants to provide comfort from coughs and colds; saline nasal spray

Food and supplies: to feed your family for the 90 days that it takes a pandemic to circle the globe, infect, kill, and then burn itself out from lack of susceptible hosts 

  • In addition to a variety of food for healthy people, include items that are easy to swallow and nutritious for the sick, like broths and jello.
  • Soap, disinfectants, rubbing alcohol, cleaning supplies
  • Extra bed linens, water proof mattress and pillow covers
  • Gasoline
  • Humidifiers

When to hunker down?

Pay attention to the news and other lines of communication in your community. When you learn that sickness is within 100 miles of your home, it is time to go into social isolation. Did you know that it takes less than 10% of key infrastructure workers calling in sick to disrupt delivery of utilities? That means no electricity. Are you prepared for that?

  • Isolation means no outside contact
  • Do not come within 20 feet of other people; be aware of any coughing or sneezing
  • Do not accept anything from anyone without 10 days of isolation; then sterilize
  • No grocery store for 90 days
  • No work – check on possibility of working from home
  • No school – get school work assignments for children to do at home
  • Don’t go to hospital except in case of immediate life threatening emergency
  • Be prepared for power grid to fail
  • Set up an isolation area for anyone who may become sick

What should be in an isolation room?

This should be in a separate building or outside in an RV, trailer, or tent. Remove all unnecessary items from the room. If someone exhibits symptoms, isolate them immediately. One person should be designated as the care giver. If there are two or more sick people, have them share a room and bathroom. Document the disease progress. If you have to keep the sick in the same dwelling, use the plastic sheeting and duct tape to create a barrier, floor t0 ceiling.

Isolation room contents: put these things in the isolation room and leave them there

  • Tissues
  • Trashcan with a lid and plastic liners
  • Plenty of water for the sick
  • Thermometer
  • Humidifier – extra moisture aids breathing
  • Face masks for the sick to protect care giver
  • Window fan for negative pressure and air circulation
  • Waste bucket

Wash all bedding and other clothing on the hottest setting. Wear gloves when handling contaminated items. Use disposable dishes and utensils. Use rubbing alcohol for sterilizing the sick room. Once infected with a flu virus a person is contagious  for up to 10 days. Protect yourself while caring for the sick by using protective clothing, masks and gloves. Wash your hands with soap and water frequently and increase your vitamins to boost immune system.

References
1.   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epidemic
2.  http://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/features/what-is-pandemic
3.  http://www.livescience.com/32284-how-do-we-catch-the-flu.html
4.  http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20311978_2,00.html

Billie Nicholson, Editor
December 2014

This month’s issue includes:
  • During our conversations with Pearl Harbor Survivors, they continued to warn us of the importance of being prepared – on every level, from our national military down to each individual. During World War II, everyone sacrificed to insure that world peace would be restored.
  • Mama’s Last Gift ~ Who would expect 33 year old jelly to be any good? The jelly was firm and no crystallization or mold was apparent. A taste test confirmed the goodness within.
  • As you make your list and check it twice for holiday gifts, (even from-you-to-you gifts), check out our “Prepared Family Combo.”
  • Deer hunting season is a highlight of the winter months. Here is our favorite recipe made in the Sun Oven®. Served with warm Artisan bread, this makes a hearty meal in any weather.
  • Persimmons are a sweet and delicious fruit filled with vitamins and minerals. The Fuyu variety makes a nutritious persimmon leather.
  • Generosity during the holidays often includes contributions to food banks. Think about adding healthy items in your Food Bank Contribution.

Preparedness Lessons Learned from Pearl Harbor Survivors

A History of Preparedness

Since 2011, my husband, Robert, and I have been working with a group of  Pensacola, FL  Pearl Harbor Survivors. They expressed a desire to return to Pearl Harbor to say “One Last Goodbye” to their comrades who had served and died during World War II, especially at Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941. A day that started out quiet and sunny until bombs began falling from the sky, turning that idyllic place into a burning, death-laden horror. The Pensacola community came together to provide funds for our Survivors, care-givers and a documentary team to return to Pearl Harbor. The 70th commemoration service allowed these heroes an opportunity to honor their fallen comrades and to visit the locations where each man was when the attack began.

During our conversations with the Survivors, they continued to warn us of the importance of being prepared – on every level, from our national military down to each individual. During World War II, everyone sacrificed to insure that world peace would be restored.

Awareness was the first lesson. “It is easy to just go through life day by day and not be aware of what is going on in the world,” said Cass Phillips, “pay attention.”

Work with honor. “Do the work that’s assigned to you with pride, to the best of your ability,” said Bill Braddock.

Take care of your family. Frank Emond said, “Plant a garden to help feed your family and keep the kids out of trouble. Teach them a trade and a hobby. Encourage them to help others. Life is more that just going to work every day.”

Get an education. “Growing sugar beets for a living was really hard work, but it taught us to get an education and find a job doing things you love,” chimed in Jake Gallowa.

Love your countrymen. “In the Navy, we all worked together to keep one another safe,” commented Jay Carraway. “We should always watch out for our neighbors and pray for protection of our active duty military. They are putting their lives on the line to protect us.”

Preparedness Reminders

During our research to complete the book “Pearl Harbor Honor Flight: One Last Goodbye,” we came across vintage war posters. They serve as reminders for us today: Plant a garden, don’t waste food, preserve food for later… Remember Pearl Harbor and Always Be Prepared. World War II veterans are our National Treasures. If you know one, thank him for his service to all of us. Ask him what preparedness means. Be ready to take notes.

Be Prepared

Billie Nicholson, Editor
December 2014
This month’s issue includes:
  • Preparing for a Pandemic ~ A pandemic is basically a global epidemic. Learn how to protect your family should a viral sickness begin to spread around the world.
  • Mama’s Last Gift ~ Who would expect 33 year old jelly to be any good? The jelly was firm and no crystallization or mold was apparent. A taste test confirmed the goodness within.
  • As you make your list and check it twice for holiday gifts, (even from-you-to-you gifts), check out our “Prepared Family Combo.”
  • Deer hunting season is a highlight of the winter months. Here is our favorite recipe made in the Sun Oven®. Served with warm Artisan bread, this makes a hearty meal in any weather.
  • Persimmons are a sweet and delicious fruit filled with vitamins and minerals. The Fuyu variety makes a nutritious persimmon leather.
  • Generosity during the holidays often includes contributions to food banks. Think about adding healthy items in your Food Bank Contribution.

Squash Chips

  Squash ChipsWhen they were in abundance at our farmer’s market, I bought a bunch of summer squash. They are not one of my favorite frozen foods. In an attempt to find an alternative way to preserve them, I dehydrated them in our Sun Oven®.  They were sliced in a uniform thickness of 1/4”, spread on parchment paper and sprinkled with seasoned salt and dried oregano. Placed in the Sun Oven® and kept at a temperature of less than 100ºF. by leaving the door propped open, they were dehydrated in 24 hours.

The plan was to store them in glass canning jars, add an oxygen absorber and pull a vacuum seal. That happened on the second batch. The first batch never made it that far. We sampled them and the next thing we knew, we had eaten them all. What a treat! They were better than potato chips and no cooking required. I may never cook summer squash again. Try this and let us know you seasoning recipe.

Squash Chips

Squash Chips

Billie Nicholson, editor
November, 2014

This month’s article includes:

Thanksgiving Day – An American Tradition  a change of economic systems led to this holiday for expressing gratitude  http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12222

A Winter “To Do” List  http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12232  Don’t let cold weather catch you unprepared.

Use household items to make your own Gel packs for sprains and swollen joints.  http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12238

Inviting pests to leave your home this winter, naturally. http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12260

Commit these ground to air emergency codes to memory. You may need them this winter. http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12243

 

Super size your rain water storage  http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12265

French style Stew   http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12032

Super-Size Your Rain Barrel for Water Storage


Super size water storageIt’s nice to have a supply of rainwater for gardening purposes and, with that in mind, we put a rain barrel to collect water from off the roof of our shop. The usual rain barrel system has a single plastic drum placed under the downspout on the corner of a building. About 30,000 gallons of rainwater falls on the roof of the average home per year. So there is plenty of water to go around. Excess water overflows the barrel and is absorbed into the ground.

We do not want to use valuable stored drinking water for cleaning, washing and hygiene if we lose access to our regular water supply. We decided to expand the amount of rainwater storage by adding two additional water barrels next to our existing one. We used sturdy plastic trashcans we had on hand.

When installing any water catchment system it is necessary to make sure that each barrel is on a sturdy base and is level. As a base we used cinder blocks and 2×4 pressure treated lumber.

Super size water storage

We drilled holes into the trash-can lids and installed garden hoses from one barrel to the next. To keep the hose ends from floating we placed a weight on the hose end. Before inserting the hose fully in place we charged each hose with water so that there would be a siphon-effect between the barrels.

When the water is used from one barrel the other barrels drain too. They also fill up the same way through the siphon-effect. As a final touch we placed a screen barrier at each hole so the mosquitos would not breed in the stored water. We treated the water by adding non-scented, not detergent bleach in the amount of 12 ounces per 50 gallon barrel. This prevents algae from growing in the water. We now have 150 gallons of rainwater storage capacity.

Super Size water storage

 

Robert Nicholson
November 2014

This month’s article includes:

Thanksgiving Day – An American Tradition  a change of economic systems led to this holiday for expressing gratitude  http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12222

A Winter “To Do” List  http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12232  Don’t let cold weather catch you unprepared.

Use household items to make your own Gel packs for sprains and swollen joints.  http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12238

Inviting pests to leave your home this winter, naturally. http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12260

Commit these ground to air emergency codes to memory. You may need them this winter. http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12243

Squash Chips – an alternate way to preserve summer squash without freezing.  http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12272

French style Stew   http://www.sunoven.com/archives/12032

 

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