Thursday, May 1, 2014

17 Foods To Buy Once and Regrow Forever

17 Foods To Buy Once And Regrow Forever

17 Foods To Buy Once And Regrow Forever
Everyday we  throw heaps of leftovers and scraps out which could actually be used to regrow fruits, vegetables and herbs completely free of charge.
Not only can we save money, but also reduce our carbon footprint. With grocery prices increasing, now is the best time to get frugal in the kitchen and garden.
Below are seventeen fruits, vegetables and herbs you can buy once and regrow forever…

Vegetables

Regrow Green Onions - Want to grow green onions indefinitely? If the answer is yes then follow this tutorial and always have green onions always at hand.
Regrow Onions – This clever method of growing onions in an old used water bottle on a windowsill is a great way to get free onions!
Regrow Carrots -This method to grow carrots from carrot tops is so simple you can get the kids involved. The instant results will get them excited from the word go.
Regrow Celery  - This is a clever idea to regrow celery from the base.
Regrow Sweet Potato’s – The versatility of the sweet potato means it’s a firm favorite with any home cook, here we share a tutorial on how to grow more using nothing but a sweet potato.
Regrow Leeks – Regrowing leeks is similar to regrowing green onions. The simple method is so handy to make the most out of your veggies.
Regrow Bok Choy – Along with celery and onions, bok choy can also be re-grown. This is a fantastic way of cutting your food bills. Why not try it yourself.

Fruit

Regrow Avocado - This easy to follow tutorial requires toothpicks and patience. More avocado’s are not guaranteed, but they have been known to grow. No matter what, you will definitely end up with a great plant  to feature in your garden.
Regrow Lemons - Lemons can be used in so many food and drink recipes alike, even used in crafts and homemade detergents. Why not plant a lemon seed and grow a whole Lemon Tree….
Regrow Pineapples – An impressive tip for pineapple lovers out there! This DIY will leave you with a great pineapple plant making your garden look exotic and unique.

Herbs & Spices

Regrow Ginger – This simple idea requires only a piece of sprouting ginger to regrow more of this fantastic spice forever!
Regrow Basil – Regrowing basil couldn’t be easier, this method will have you growing your own fresh basil in no time. Don’t waste your money on shop bought basil that can ruin quickly.
Regrow Lemongrass – Lemongrass is great in stir-fry recipes and adding a kick to drinks. Here’s how to grow your own.
Regrow A Garlic Bulb – You too can grow a whole garlic bulb from a simple clove. Follow these 5 steps and you will be well on your way to growing your own bulb.
Propagate Rosemary - Regrow rosemary cuttings from your container plant. Why not make even more rosemary plants to fill your garden. This popular herb can be used in a number of recipes so you won’t be short of ideas of what to use it for.
Regrow Lemon Balm – By using the cuttings of Lemon Balm, much like the above Rosemary tutorial, you can re-grow sprouts and plant even more in your garden pots.
Regrow Mint – Mint can be used in so many ways but it’s a pain having to buy a whole bunch from the store. Insteas grow your own and pick what you need!
Following a few of the above tutorials will lower your food bills and provide you with a never ending supply of herbs, fruits and vegetables that you can use in your cooking. 
Give them a try!

A Survival Garden in the Desert

A Survival Garden In The Desert

Posted in Growing your OwnHomesteadingSelf-Sufficiency.
Growing A Survival Garden In The Desert
Growing A Survival Garden In The Desert
Guest post by Marcela De Vivo
Living in a desert area can increase the need for self-sufficiency, especially if you are miles from your nearest neighbours. Growing a garden not only provides you and your family with much needed food and nutrition, but it can also help improve your landscape and water retention.   Desert plants in particular are a great way to reduce water use and maintenance. A garden can also draw in native wildlife, helping you create a small, natural, sustainable ecosystem.
The best time to start planting your desert garden is the fall. The soil is still warm from the residual heat from the summer, while the air temperature stays moderate with no extreme fluctuations to stress new plants. By the time the following summer rolls around, a strong root system will be established, giving plants strength to withstand desert summer’s heat.
Raised beds might be a necessity due to caliche soils—mineral deposits that harden into something more like concrete than soil—that can appear under regular desert soil. Additionally, the raised bed will help to keep your carefully fertilized and mulched topsoil in place.
One of the more complicated parts of gardening in an arid climate is getting the soil right for growing, but the rewards are definitely worth the effort. Soil in the desert usually consists mostly of clay and sand and contains little organic matter. Therefore adding compost and fertilizer is a must for desert gardens, especially for plants (like vegetables) that grow shallow roots.
(Creating a compost pile from kitchen scraps is also an efficient and self-sufficient way of reducing waste and improving your harvest!)
Mulching is also an extremely important as it helps the soil retain its water and keeps the upper layers of soil cool.  Aim for a three-inch layer of mulch over the plants’ root zones, which is the area right below the canopy and a little beyond to help maintain soil moisture. Using a crushed granite as top dressing can help to stabilize the plants and slow the loss of moisture.
It goes without saying that water will be a major factor in whether or not your garden flourishes. Even if you have a well, look for ways to conserve and use all water resources available to you.  Rain-collecting barrels are an easy to maximize water supply for the garden.
Ideally, you should try to grow your garden from seed. Not only is it less expensive, but it also allows you to condition your plants to the challenging environment in which they will grow to maturity. If you are going to grow plants from seeds, use heirloom seeds. This allows you to save seeds from one year’s harvest to plant a new garden in future years.
The type of vegetation you choose to plant also makes a difference in sustainability. Do some research regarding growing seasons and best plants to grow in your area. For sheer nutrition and desert-appropriateness, cruciferous vegetables are an excellent choice. They packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber and they provide protection to a variety of cancers. Many cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli, kale, beets, cabbage, cauliflower, radishes, and turnips grow well in the desert, and fall is the ideal time to plant them.
Companion planting can also help improve the sustainability of your garden because it can reduce the need for pesticides. Additionally, some plants can enrich the soil with nutrients needed by others; others offer protection or shade.
Planting in shade or providing shade for you garden is also key. A food-friendly solution is to plant fruit trees for shade, so that they provide both fruit for your family and shade for the rest of the garden. The leaves also can go towards creating compost. Shade cloth is another option to protect your plants from the summer desert sun.
Be flexible about what you want to grow in your garden; trial and error will show you what will succeed in your particular patch of land and what will not. With each succeeding season, your soil quality, know-how, and plant choice will improve, and your harvests will become more bountiful.
Marcela De Vivo is a freelance writer in the Los Angeles area who also works with moisture-sensor manufacturers Process Sensors. She has written on everything from health & wellness, marketing and technology.

Garlic

How To Turn One Garlic Bulb Into Lots Of Garlic Bulbs
How To Turn One Garlic Bulb Into Lots Of Garlic Bulbs
Ok this is fairly simple, but it always surprises me how many people don’t know this, and also, how many people don’t do it!  Garlic is one of the easiest crops to grow, as long as they don’t sit in soggy, wet ground, they rarely have any problems. Garlic does take a fair while to grow, but this is countered by the fact you can grow a year’s worth of garlic in around a meter square. Also once cropped and dried, garlic will keep for up to ten months.
I recommend that you purchase organic garlic bulbs for planting, but it doesn’t really matter if you get these from the supermarket or a seed supplier. Organic is organic and we have had great success growing garlic from the supermarket. Organic garlic from the store will likely be much cheaper too!

Turn One Garlic Bulb Into Many…

Take one garlic bulb and pull off all the individual cloves. Each one of these cloves will grow into a whole new garlic bulb!
To plant – you can plant directly in the soil, or in pots. First make a hole in the soil with your finger that is just a tiny bit deeper than the garlic clove is high. Now pop the garlic clove into the hole, with the pointy end of the clove pointing upwards (very important!). Now just pinch the soil in around the clove.  When done the top of the clove should be just below the surface of the soil. Now repeat the process, but leave a space of at least five cm between each clove.
The best time to plant garlic is October/November, but you can also plant in the Spring. In fact we have planted garlic at various different times and it usually grows pretty well.
If you find some store bought garlic is starting to sprout in the cupboard, don’t throw it away, plant it up and see what happens…