Gardening Questions #003 – Are Ornamental Sweet Peas Edible?

Are Ornamental Sweet Peas Edible? Ornamental sweet peas are not edible, they are toxic and should not be eaten! The common sweet pea, Lathyrus odoratus is an ornamental leguminous annual climbing plant which is native to southern Italy, and is grown purely for its very fragrant and colourful flowers. Are Sweet Peas and Edible PeasContinue reading “Gardening Questions #003 – Are Ornamental Sweet Peas Edible?”

The Easiest Way to Dry and Process Turmeric Root to Make Turmeric Powder

  Turmeric (Curcuma longa syn. C. domestica) is a subtropical/tropical plant which is a member of the ginger (Zingiberaceae) family, and is native to Southwest India. It’s grown traditionally as a spice, medicine and as a source of bright yellow dye. Ground turmeric root is an important culinary spice, and curry powder contains up toContinue reading “The Easiest Way to Dry and Process Turmeric Root to Make Turmeric Powder”

How to Grow the Medicinal Aloe Arborescens

  Aloe arborescens, also know as the tree aloe, torch aloe, candelabra aloe or krantz aloe, is a hardy succulent perennial plant from the Aloe family Asphodelaceae, which is native to the south-eastern coast of Africa (Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, and Zimbabwe). This drought-tolerant succulent prefers to grow in sandy or rocky well-drained soil.Continue reading “How to Grow the Medicinal Aloe Arborescens”

Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 5, How to Plant Seedlings

How to Plant Seedling in Six Easy Steps Once we’ve selected the appropriate seedlings that are in season, it’s seedling planting time! In this article we’ll cover the fundamentals of seedling planting, the procedure is very simple and much easier than sowing seeds. If you’re a beginner to food gardening, I recommend starting off withContinue reading “Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 5, How to Plant Seedlings”

How to Make Aloe Vera Gel from Fresh Aloe Vera Leaves

Aloe vera leaves contain a gel which is used externally to treat skin irritation, minor burns, sunburn, itching due to allergies and insect bites, sores, skin ulcers and many other conditions. The edible variety, Aloe vera barbadensis miller, is also used to make Aloe vera juice. This useful plant has a been used medicinally forContinue reading “How to Make Aloe Vera Gel from Fresh Aloe Vera Leaves”

How to Use Replaceable Filter Face Masks for COVID-19 Coronavirus Protection

For protection against COVID-19 Coronavirus, people have been using disposable surgical masks or N95 /P2 respirators. With the shortage of these protective masks, people have been advised to sew their own protective cloth masks , which are not as effective but still offer some protection, and are washable. A further development from these forms ofContinue reading “How to Use Replaceable Filter Face Masks for COVID-19 Coronavirus Protection”

Which Variety of Grape Vine Has Edible Leaves for Making Dolmades?

  Dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) are a popular dish in Greek and Middle Eastern cuisine. These appetisers are made of meat, rice, various herbs and spices, all of which are wrapped in grape vine  leaves and cooked. When cooking, it’s important to use the correct ingredients, which is why many people ask, which grape varietiesContinue reading “Which Variety of Grape Vine Has Edible Leaves for Making Dolmades?”

How To Safely Put on, Use and Remove a Face Mask to Protect Against COVID-19 Coronavirus

Now that more people are beginning to wear protective face masks, either P2/N95 rated masks, surgical masks or even homemade masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19 coronavirus transmission,  it’s important that they use them correctly to get the best protection  and avoid accidental contamination. Here’s how to safely put on, use and remove aContinue reading “How To Safely Put on, Use and Remove a Face Mask to Protect Against COVID-19 Coronavirus”

Why You Should Wear a Mask for COVID-19 Coronavirus, Debunking The Bad Science!

There has been a lot of bad advice coming from government authorities and ‘experts’ during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, and it usually starts with the ominous words “there is still no evidence that…”. The questionable advice which follows usually discourages people from helping themselves by taking extra precautions that take little to no effort andContinue reading “Why You Should Wear a Mask for COVID-19 Coronavirus, Debunking The Bad Science!”

Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 4, How to Sow Seeds Directly Into the Ground and Into Seedling Trays

Sowing Seeds Directly Into the Ground or Into Seedling Trays Once we’ve selected the appropriate seeds or seedlings that are in season, it’s seed sowing or seedling planting time! In this article we’ll cover the fundamentals of seed sowing, the procedure is quite straightforward and only a bit more complicated than planting seedlings.   WhereContinue reading “Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 4, How to Sow Seeds Directly Into the Ground and Into Seedling Trays”

Fact Check – Is Ibuprofen Safe? COVID-19 Coronavirus and Medications that Weaken Your Immune System

Some medications are known to weaken the immune system, and would therefore compromise the body’s capacity to fight off diseases such as the COVID-19 Coronavirus. There has been a lot of concerns about the safety of Ibuprofen use during the COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak, so we’ll examine the facts from credible and authoritative sources about thisContinue reading “Fact Check – Is Ibuprofen Safe? COVID-19 Coronavirus and Medications that Weaken Your Immune System”

Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 3, When to Sow Seeds and Plant Seedlings

Sowing Seeds and Planting Seedlings at The Right Time of the Year Once you’ve selected a good location to start a food garden, and prepared the soil in the garden bed to make it suitable for growing plants, the next step is to plant it up! Before any planting is done though, there are aContinue reading “Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 3, When to Sow Seeds and Plant Seedlings”

Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 2, How to Prepare the Soil

Preparing the Soil for Growing Food The secret to successful food gardening is rich, healthy soil. What goes into the soil goes into the food coming out of it! Plants take mineral nutrients and water from the soil, along with carbon dioxide from the air and sunlight from the sun to feed themselves and produceContinue reading “Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 2, How to Prepare the Soil”

Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 1, Selecting a Location for a Food Garden

Sometimes governments do give sound advice to their nations… During World War I and World War II, in a an effort to reduce the public demand on food supplies and leave more food to send to the soldiers fighting overseas, governments encouraged their people to plant ‘victory gardens’.   What is a Victory Garden? AContinue reading “Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening – Part 1, Selecting a Location for a Food Garden”

How COVID-19 Coronavirus Spreads and What You Can Do to Control It

The general public can play a significant role in reducing the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, it’s everyone’s responsibility, not just the government’s, and everyone has a role to play.   Epidemic Control is a Community Effort, Why Selfishness is Dangerous! Since epidemics can affect everyone, the most vulnerable people are the weakest links inContinue reading “How COVID-19 Coronavirus Spreads and What You Can Do to Control It”

COVID-19 Coronavirus Misinformation – Are Masks Protective?

Both the US and Australian governments are advising people that masks don’t work as protection against the COVID-19 coronavirus, but is this true? Half-truths are as bad as outright lies, and both governments are guilty of a dangerous half-truth here because they’re being very vague and non-specific in their advice, making it worse than useless.Continue reading “COVID-19 Coronavirus Misinformation – Are Masks Protective?”

The Coronavirus Panic and How To Prepare Properly, A Permaculture Prepper Perspective

An insidious epidemic is sweeping across Australia, the UK and the US, and governments are unable to do anything to control it. No, I’m not talking about the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak, but it’s long shadow, the epidemic of fear spreading before it! Modern, technologically advanced nations like to project an image of orderly, stable societyContinue reading “The Coronavirus Panic and How To Prepare Properly, A Permaculture Prepper Perspective”

Choosing a Disposable Dust Mask Respirator for Air Pollution and Smoke Protection

Disposable dust masks or respirators offer protection from fine particulate matter in the air such as dusts, aerosols and smoke. At the time of writing, respiratory protection has been in high demand in Australia due to the extensive bushfires sweeping through the country and the degradation in air quality to hazardous levels. According to newsContinue reading “Choosing a Disposable Dust Mask Respirator for Air Pollution and Smoke Protection”

Identifying and Growing Edible Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is a hardy succulent semi-tropical plant which is native to North Africa and the SW Arabian Peninsula, but at the present time can almost be found worldwide. It’s a very tough plant which will grow in poor soil and hot, dry sunny  locations, but can also be grown as an indoor plant nearContinue reading “Identifying and Growing Edible Aloe Vera”

Why You Shouldn’t Use Sales Receipts in Your Compost or Worm Farm

  Remember Bisphenol A, also known as BPA, the toxic endocrine-disrupting chemical which leached out of plastic drink bottles that has now been banned worldwide? Well, the bad news is that it’s still around and you have more contact with it than you imagine! Thermal paper used in cash register sales receipts and ATM receiptsContinue reading “Why You Shouldn’t Use Sales Receipts in Your Compost or Worm Farm”