Local Gems – Soil Born Farms

Soil Born Farms is a local farm nestled in the middle of the city of Rancho Cordova. Started in 2000 when two ambitious but inexperienced organic farmers received permission from the landowner to farm her property in exchange for produce. Continue reading “Local Gems – Soil Born Farms”

Herbal Glossary

Here is a compilation of common herbal terms that you may see when learning about herbs and herbal remedies. I will be updating this periodically.
It is important to learn homeopathic, herbal, and natural remedies, because access to a physician will be limited in the good times, and probably nonexistent in a disaster situation.

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The Garden Goes In – Part 2

“The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul.” ~ Alfred Austin
There is an art to gardening that I feel surpasses my understanding… When I go to a museum, I don’t sit and stare at any one thing for hours basking in the nuances of color, texture, medium, canvas, or stroke…. I look at something, determine almost immediately whether I like it or not, and unless there is something immensely interesting about it, I tend to move on in about 15 minutes or so.  I am not artistic or creative, and I rarely have the time or patience for detailed work.  When it comes to gardening, the plants either get tough or die…

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Finally… the Garden goes in – Post #1

“There are blessings in being close to the soil, in raising your own food even if it is only a garden in your yard and a fruit tree or two. Those families will be fortunate who, in the last days, have an adequate supply of food because of their foresight and ability to produce their own.” ~ Ezra Taft Benson

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Natural Mosquito Repellent

Our family LOVES to go backpacking!  There is something to be said for hiking off into the woods getting away from it all (including other people) and roughing it.  The one thing I don’t appreciate about backpacking is mosquitoes! It seems that the last few times we have gone, mosquitoes have been our biggest complaint… Maybe it is the drought we are in here in Cali, that leaves the water levels ripe for mosquitoes to breed, I don’t know, but it has been a bug ridden season…

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The Hen House

This is our chicken tractor. Yes it is on wheels and when Michael made it (5 years ago) we could pull it around the yard so the chickens could have access to newer weeds and bugs and the area where they messed could air and dry out and grow new weeds. 🙂

Having chickens was his idea… having lived his young life raising animals for food, it was an experience he was eager to share with our own kids before they became too old to appreciate it. We started off with 5 chickens, 2 Dutch Welsummers, 1 Buff Orpington, and 2 Cinnamon Queens.  We had a Silky but I can’t remember if that was from the first batch or the second…

We have gone through several incarnations of chicken demographics and coop locations.  Shortly after we started this project we discovered that they could be set free in the yard and left to their own devices.  They roosted and laid eggs in the coop but for the day they wondered the yard and ate bugs and weeds.

When I got my Aussie Sheppard Fergie, we discovered that aside from being a herding animal, she had an affinity for catching and eating chickens!! So.. for 2 years we had built them a bigger fenced in area that they could call their own, and also trained Fergie to not eat chickens by hitting her unceremoniously about the head with her last feathered meal which we were lucky enough to catch her with.  She didn’t much care for that admonishment, and so has not eating a chicken since… (still haven’t figured out how to keep her from the rabbits, as we are not inclined to sacrifice one for training purposes, so we keep them fences off… more on that project at a later time.)

Currently we have 36+ chickens, 11 of which are meat chickens which will jump into jars as soon as they are full grown, and whatever roosters are in the bunch will also be culled and we will keep all the new young egg layers, both White Leghorns and Buff Orpingtons. Probably 10 all together…

We have found the buffs to be exceptional layers and Caveman really wants a bunch of leghorns, presumably because they are also good layers, but I think mostly because he wants to be a chicken hawk…

Magnesium Oil

Magnesium is a very important mineral found in leafy greens, nuts, and legumes as well as other foods, yet most American still aren’t getting enough dietary magnesium. According to one study magnesium deficiency combined with a high-fructose diet induces insulin resistance, hypertension, dyslipidemia, endothelial activation and prothrombic changes in combination with the upregulation of markers of inflammation and oxidative stress. Another study showed that bathing in a magnesium salt bath improved the hydration of the skin and reduced skin inflammation, redness and irritation.

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