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    Wind Chimes

    Wind chimes have been used by many cultures going back as far as 1100 BC. Believe it or not, they weren’t created to irritate cranky neighbors, but in fact were thought to ward off evil spirits. They’re considered a percussion instrument, and because their sound is created at random by the wind, their soothing, melodic […] More

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    Bed Frames

    For as much time as we spend in our bedrooms, it’s surprising how little attention we sometimes give that space. It’s likely because we feel like no one else will see it, so it can wait until we’ve addressed other rooms throughout the home. But what about you? Why shouldn’t your bedroom be the sanctuary […] More

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    What I Did When My Compost Got Smelly

    “Ugh! What’s that smell?” I still remember the exclamations that came from our next door neighbor, back in the day when we lived nestled way too close together in not-so-blissful suburbia. Over time the exclamations continued, “I can’t sit out here. It positively reeks.” After that came the pointing and glaring. The Source Of The […] More

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    Shed Plans

    Sheds are an important asset to any garden, backyard, or homestead. They keep our spaces organized and protect our tools from the elements. Whether you’re needing a traditional, simple shed for your home and garden products or a more decorative shed to bring aesthetics to your garden, there is a design out there that is […] More

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    Bats Benefit The Environment—And Your Homestead

    Worldwide, bats receive an undeserved bad rep. If asked, most people worldwide will say they don’t like bats. Bats smell bad, they’re creepy, dangerous, and are typically portrayed as scary in numerous horror films. The majority of folks questioned would likely tell you that bats are “flying rats” that carry disease. Simply put, they are […] More

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    Rodent Control Without Poison

    As the weather starts to cool, rodents such as mice, rats, chipmunks, and squirrels attempt to find a warm place to stay well fed during the cold winter months. While these rodent pests are small, they can cause huge problems for homesteaders. Rodents contaminate food and indoor surfaces with salmonella and a diverse array of […] More

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    Bulb Planting In Fall

    If you want a bold display of color in the spring, fall is the time to start planting. Bulbs like daffodils, tulips, crocus, alliums, and hyacinths, as well as tubers, tuberous roots, corms, and rhizomes should be planted in the fall before the soil freezes. These types of plants require a lengthy period of cold […] More

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    15 Seeds You Should Save

    If you enjoy your current plant varieties, you may want to save the seeds for next year. A healthy garden, both flowers and vegetables, is certainly something to be proud of. Inevitably there will be some plants that you prefer over others, and as luck will have it, some of these plants will be annuals. […] More

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    Growing Saffron Crocus Bulbs

    Known around the globe as a spice worth more than its weight in gold, saffron is expensive, but the intense color and incredible flavor it brings to food is priceless. A single grain of pure saffron will add distinctive bright yellow color to 10 gallons of water, or embellish the flavor of 10 pounds of […] More

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    How To Start A Blueberry Patch With Three Plants

    There are many reasons why you should introduce blueberries into your landscape, and the first is they’re delicious. Blueberries are a tiny, but mighty fruit that packs a punch. Full of antioxidants, cancer-fighting, and having anti-aging properties, blueberries should be a part of your summer diet. These were absolutely delicious! #blueberries #eatyourfruit #summerdays #delicious A post […] More

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    Our Dead Trees Became Living Fungal Art

    Fungi are remarkable, and after many trees fell in our yard we discovered the beauty of living fungal art. Trees–they’re beautiful when healthy, but even long-living, solid trees can meet an untimely end. When we moved onto our one-acre country lot, we were thrilled with the bits of forest that surrounded our house. Not only […] More

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    Plantain Weed

    Learning about Mother Nature’s edible and healing plants is a critical component of living a sustainable, self-sufficient, and prepared lifestyle. Broadleaf Plantain Broadleaf Plantain, commonly pronounced plan-tin, is a “common” weed that most folks recognize. You likely see it in your lawn, but chances are you don’t know its name. However, there is nothing common […] More

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    Planting Currant Bushes

    Currants are a great addition to any homestead. Native to the United States, currants are a flavorful and versatile berry used in jellies, jams, wine, cordials, puddings, and pies. Currants, no matter whether they are black, red, pink, or white, establish readily in the homestead garden where they will provide an annual abundance of sweet […] More

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    How To Make A Healing Salve From Backyard “Weeds”

    Before I was interested in natural ways of healing, I had no problem reaching for the common OTC cough syrups, ointments, and multi-syllabic pills available at my local big box store. However, as I learned more about the side effects of synthetic additives, petroleum-based ointments, and hormone-disrupting chemicals, I started wondering about the safety and […] More

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    Rock Garden: How To Build Your Own

    Does your homestead landscape have some empty space that could become a rock garden? Also known as a rockery, a rock garden adds dramatic year-round visual interest to any landscape while expanding the type of plants you can grow. Related Post: The Art Of The Dry Stack Stone Wall A rock garden, glowing with brightly […] More

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    How To Get Rid Of Pests In Your Vegetable Garden

    Pests can harm your garden, but there are natural solutions available. A new piece of property, fertile soil, and lots of sun and water is all you should need for a successful vegetable garden. However, there are the invasions that you probably didn’t consider. For instance, you have the blue jays that peck mercilessly at […] More

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    Companion Planting For Beets

    Do you want to improve the health and yield of your beet crop? Companion planting might be the answer. Companion planting is a time-tested, organic gardening method of planting compatible plants in close proximity to each other so that each may benefit from the other. Companion plants provide shade and shelter, control weeds, enrich the […] More

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    Companion Planting For Turnips

    Turnips are great for any garden, and you can use companion planting to help them grow even better. Permaculture Research Institute describes companion planting as “A gardening method which makes use of the synergistic properties found in nature: cooperation between plants to achieve optimum health and viability.” Growing different types of plants together with the […] More

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    Growing Cucumbers

    Growing cucumbers is a rewarding experience. Nothing is quite as satisfying on a hot day as that juicy crunch when you bite into a fresh cucumber. These delicious vegetables can be a little tricky to grow, especially in cool climates, but there’s no looking back once you find the varieties and practices that work for […] More

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    How To Choose A Greenhouse Material

    By extending the growing season, greenhouse growing enables the cultivation of organic, pesticide-free produce all year around. Breaking into greenhouse growing can seem like a daunting task, but with the right information, you can decide which greenhouse is best for you.  Greenhouse Structure The design of a greenhouse greatly impacts its productivity and energy-efficiency.  Though other materials are […] More

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    Indigenous Microorganisms (IMO)

    It can be difficult to have a symbiotic relationship with microorganisms when you live in a world where Purell hand sanitizer dispensers line the wall of every doctor’s office and the words “bacteria” or “fungus” cause fear. It wasn’t until I took a soil science class at the Evergreen State College, where I was exposed […] More

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    How To Remove Bramble Bushes

    What is a bramble? For me it’s that spiky annoyance that scratches your arms and grabs your pant legs unexpectedly when you’re trying to take a walk or weed your garden. It’s prickly, invasive, and quickly takes root anywhere, making it impossible to eradicate. Did I say impossible? Well almost. It’s certainly a battle I am […] More

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    The Best Amazon Prime Day Deals For Homesteaders

    Amazon’s massive Prime Day promotion is starting Monday, July 10th at 9 pm ET (6pm PT). They’ll be announcing deals throughout the day and in the days leading up to the 10th. Each deal will be one of three types: Spotlight Deals: Deep discounts on top products that last until Amazon runs out of stock (in […] More

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    6 Plants That Like Wet Soil

    When you consider gardening in a heavily watered area, it is important to know which plants will thrive. Anything, from the sun you get to the seeds you buy, can affect the growth of your plants. When people struggle to grow healthy plants, it’s often because they live in wet climates—either it rains a lot […] More

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    Urban Agriculture Creates Independence and Healthy Communities

    What do you think of when you hear the term “urban agriculture?” Sometimes it’s about practices involving cultivating, processing, and distributing food in densely populated areas. At other times, it involves particular skills like animal husbandry, aquaculture, agroforestry, urban beekeeping, or horticulture. Urban agriculture can also reflect the ways that people across socioeconomic strata react […] More

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    Growing Blackberries

    Blackberries are easy to grow. A diverse array of blackberry varieties are native to almost all of North America. They are especially abundant in areas with warm summer days, cool nights, and plenty of moisture. An aggregate fruit composed of many tiny fruits known as drupes, blackberries are similar in taste and growth habit to […] More

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    Companion Planting For Sweet Corn

    Companion planting can help you grow delicious sweet corn. The gardening method combines good neighbor flowers, herbs and vegetables that support the growth of each other. Good neighbor plants can provide essential nutrients to the soil, attract pollinators to the garden, provide shade, shelter or support for other plants, control weeds, and deter and confusing predatory […] More

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    Polycarbonate Greenhouses

    “Plastic” and “durability” aren’t usually words that should go together, but in the case of greenhouses they can. Long-lasting polycarbonate is worth considering as the covering material for your greenhouse, especially when compared to the traditional use of glass. In the case of modern tempered glass, rocks and hail shatter the panes with little effort. […] More

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    Companion Planting For Eggplant

    If you enjoy grilling outdoors, eggplant is a must in the homestead garden. Companion planting and a bit of effort will help ensure a bountiful harvest of succulent, sun-blessed orbs. During the height of the summer season, you will harvest several eggplants a week. Plant a few more, and they are a profitable cash crop […] More

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    Growing Shiitake Mushrooms

    We got involved with Shiitake Mushrooms through our Agricultural Cooperative Extension Agency. (This is a great resource for any farmer. Make it a point at least to visit your local office and see the different programs they have going on for the farmer.) Back in 2003, our local office started helping traditional tobacco farmers transition into […] More

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    Companion Planting For Broccoli

    Experienced organic gardeners bring diversity and balance to the garden with the age-old wisdom of companion planting, a time-tested method of close planting specific species based on their propensity to enhance each other’s growth and quality. Companion planting can help you grow a thriving crop of delicious, healthy broccoli. Companion plants offer shade or shelter, […] More

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    Companion Planting For Celery

    You can help your celery crop thrive with companion planting. Companion planting is a centuries-old method of organic gardening that places plants that support the growth and development of each other, near each other. Companion plants deter harmful insect pests, attract beneficial pollinators, provide support and shade, enhance the soil, suppress weeds, and conserve moisture. […] More

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    Companion Planting For Melons

    As any experienced gardener will tell you, it takes a whole lot more than sun and soil to successfully cultivate a homestead garden. Moisture, nutrition, as well as weed and pest control are required. While many gardeners treat their garden with commercial insecticides to prevent insect pests, these noxious chemicals have the adverse affect of […] More

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    Companion Planting For Okra

    Companion planting is an organic method of disease and pest control accomplished by planting two or more types of plants, which have advantageous symbiotic relationships, near each other within a designated or confined garden space to the benefit of one or more of the neighboring plants. Selecting the right “good neighbors” for okra reduces unwanted […] More

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    Growing Broccoli

    Broccoli is an undervalued but delicious crop that is easy to grow in many climates and versatile in the kitchen. If you are new to broccoli, or just looking to improve your harvest, find some tips and tricks on growing this classic crop. Varieties of Broccoli There are more exciting types of broccoli than most […] More

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    Bald Eagle Attacks Chicken

    Reddit user mvar posted this near death experience for one of his chickens. Close call for one of my chickens this morning. Only damage was some missing feathers! The lesson, as always, is to have surveillance video covering your entire homestead so you don’t miss amazing stuff like this. Our chicken expert says that visiting […] More

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    Companion Planting For Peppers

    Do you love mild, crisp peppers in a broad spectrum of colors? Or hot red chili peppers that make your taste buds tingle and your eyes water? Grow peppers in your garden and you’ll have an assortment to add bold flavor to soups, stews, stir-fries, sandwiches, salads, and salsa. Folks who say they don’t like […] More

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    The History Of World Naked Gardening Day

    Wikipedia would like you to believe that World Naked Gardening Day started in 2005. But our photographic evidence proves a much earlier origin for this holiday, on the first Saturday in May, when “people are encouraged to tend their portion of the world’s garden unclothed as nature intended.” Some people need no such encouragement—including some […] More

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    Growing Herbs Indoors

    The long, cold, winter months or even the fate of living in a small apartment are not enough to stifle the need for fresh herbs. The smell of basil, the sight of green cilantro, is something that we should be able to enjoy all year round, no matter where we live. If it’s the weather, […] More

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    Companion Planting For Summer Squash

    Summer squash does everything but plant itself. If you seek a vegetable that is easy to grow, flavorful and nutritious, look no farther. You can help summer squash thrive by planting it with companion plants. If you have planted zucchini, patty pan, longneck, or yellow crookneck squash, you know what vigorous growers and prolific producers summer squash can be. […] More

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    Outdoor Planters

    Choosing the right planters will infuse your personality and taste into your outdoor living space. Just treat it like you would the rest of your home! Choose outdoor furniture and accessories with the same care you’d take for indoor spaces. Select pillows and colors and lighting that you love and that reflect your personality. Look for […] More

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    Companion Planting For Cabbage

    Companion planting is one of the very best ways to keep cabbage plants healthy and free from insect pests such cabbage loopers, cabbage root maggots, slugs, flea beetles, diamondback moth, and aphids. Cabbage is easy to grow in the homestead garden if you select varieties suitable to your United States Plant Hardiness Zone, enhance the […] More

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    Growing Basil

    Nothing adds that je ne sais quoi to a dish like basil. Whether you use it as a garnish, a dried seasoning, or in pesto, basil is delicious. And lucky for us, it’s not hard to grow! Here are some tips and tricks for growing basil. There are dozens of types of basil, from culinary […] More

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    Companion Plants for Lavender

    Lavender can help protect your garden as a companion plant. The biggest reason is that deer, rabbits and other wildlife nibblers tend to ignore lavender due to its strong odor. Lavender is easy to cultivate in most U.S. Plant Hardiness Zones. The aromatic, herbaceous perennial adds a delightful scent to the air. The popular, colorful […] More

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