Archive for the ‘Post Topics’ Category

Preparing for forest/grass fire near your home

Monday, July 31st, 2017

By Catherine Haug, July 31, 2017

This summer there is high risk for forest and grass fires; are you prepared?

The following is by C. Wyn, an ESP member from Columbia Falls; I’ve edited it and added headings in bold. See also his 2015 posting on this site: Preparing for Disaster or Prolonged Power Outage; and my recent post: Preparing for disaster, advice for seniors. Here’s his new article:

“A lot of houses are lost many minutes or even an hour or two after the fire sweeps by. If a lot of homes get swept by fire in a short time, there are never enough fire fighters to get back in there and find all these little smokes before the grow. (Read on for more).

(more…)

Honey bees vs pesticides; Boom in organics; Monsanto Tribunal

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

By Catherine Haug, July 26, 2017 (image, right, from organic.org (2))

I subscribe to the Montana Organic Association “Organic Matters” magazine (1); the Spring issue this year has a couple articles I’d like to share with our ESP readers in the form of transcriptions of each article:

  • Bee Victory
  • Organic Agriculture Research Act
  • International Monsanto Tribunal Verdict

Note that I have added comments – in square brackets – to these transcriptions, and include links to related articles on this site.  (more…)

Just how clean is your laundry?

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

Laundry Soap Ingredients and Equipment

By Catherine Haug, July 26, 2017 (photo, right, from Sheree’s presentation on making your own laundry soap)

Washing your dirty laundry in 140°F water with real soap (not detergents) does the best job of killing bacteria and fungus germs; tumble-drying them for at least 30 minutes in a hot dryer also helps to kill those germs. But many washable fabrics will shrink in such hot water, and others may require drip-drying, so how is one supposed to keep germs in check?

This concern is especially important when there is a sick person in the house.

According to Mercola (1) there are several ways of reducing the potential of passing along bacteria or fungi from one piece of your clothing to the next without using dangerous toxins or opening yourself up to damage from microwave radiation. I’ve added one of my own as well. (more…)

Canada’s new and surprising food guidelines

Sunday, July 23rd, 2017

By Catherine Haug, July 23, 2017

Our neighbor, Canada, has just released a draft of new and simple food guidelines for public comment (1). Unlike the USA’s ‘food plate’ or ‘food pyramid’ recommendations by food group/category, Canada’s guidelines are simple and idea-based (although they do include a sample ‘plate’ (2)).  They also include an interactive “My Food Guide” (3), that can be tailored to reflect traditions and food choices of First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities.

These guidelines are good not only for human health but also for that of the planet, and do not play into the pockets of industrial lobbyists.

The following are a list of recommendations (from a Food Revolution article about the draft guidelines (4)): (more…)

Making your own mulch from recycled yard waste, etc.

Saturday, July 8th, 2017

By Catherine Haug, July 8, 2017

Today’s Daily Inter Lake featured an article, How do  you make your own mulch? by Paul Pogue for Angie’s list (1). He breaks it down to 5 steps:

  1. Choose your mulch source from: leaves, pine or fir needles, yard clippings, bark, and branches or other wood trimmings, straw, shredded newspaper, and compost. pay attention to the season: B yard trimmings and compost are excellent for summer mulch; bark is especially nutrient-rich, and along with pine needles and straw are best for winter. pCat’s note: I save the composted fir needles from my gutters to mulch my raspberry bed; raspberries like a slightly acidic soil and fir needles are acidic.]
  2. Collect your materials into piles; if using a compost pile, maintain it by keeping it relatively moist. He also advises turning it regularly, but that is a highly debated issue. When it’s ready, it should be humbly and dark brown with an earthy odor. [Cat’s note: See my 2009 posting: What makes your compost tick?]
  3. Convert the materials: use your lawnmower to cut up a pile of leaves; use a small wood chipper to turn bark, branches and other wood trimmings into tiny pieces.[Cat’s note: shred newspapers with your paper shredder, or tear them into shreds manually.]
  4. Prepare the ground: remove old mulch to your compost pile. Weed the area carefully (mulch will help existing weeds to grow – just what you don’t want).
  5. Spread the mulch: generally about 2″ thick works well. Even it out with a rake, leaving a small ‘well’ of shallower mulch around the base of plants.

Read on for more about mulching. (more…)

Preparing for disaster, advice for seniors

Saturday, July 8th, 2017

by Catherine Haug, July 8, 2017

A reader sent me a link to an interesting article on a website intending to sell the reader burial insurance. The article is titled “11 Critical Ways Seniors Can Prepare for Disaster,” by John Hawthorne (1).  It does have good advice, but I’m reluctant to make a link to the article because of its advertising intent. So I will paraphrase it in this post, adding my comments or additional information as applicable. You can always google the title and author’s name for the link. (more…)