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Category Archives: Recipes

Life-Saving Plants: Plant-Derived Modern Medicine

Plants have an age-old history of use as medicine. In fact, plants were the first form of medication we ever had. Even though many people around the world still practice various forms of herbalism and folk medicine that uses plant-based treatments, it is often not clear how plants have played a very important role in modern Western medicine. So important that much of all the medication today that is produced is derived from plants. While I write often...
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Bring the Ocean into Your Bathtub with Handmade Sea Sponge Soap Bars

Organic-looking handmade soap topped with natural sea sponges makes for a gorgeous soap that lathers up beautifully. Sea sponges are a natural, biodegradable alternative to synthetic sponges and they are gentler on skin. The last time I made soap, I set aside one of the batches to pour into silicone molds with sea sponges.There are over 5,000 varieties of sea sponge, only a few of which are harvested for commercial use. Sea sponge varieties range in size from...
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Creating a Moss Terrarium Garden for Gorgeous Green Indoor Decor

This project will take you through the steps to make a beautiful and long-lasting moss terrarium garden from NYC author and teacher, Maria Colletti. Whether you harvest moss from your garden or procure it from a florist or craft shop, these projects will keep their glorious green freshness without much care or maintenance.I have a fondness for moss. Perhaps it comes from living in British Columbia where the ground, trees, and skyline are every colour of green because...
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A Sweet Spring Cocktail, Made with…Weeds? Wild Violet Simple Syrup

Spring is made even sweeter with the emergence of delicate purple violets, dotting many a lawn and field in most parts of the country. Before you start spraying them or ripping them out and cursing them as weeds, think about this: violets are not only pretty, but like many wildflowers they are also edible flowers! Harvest them, make a gorgeous purple violet simple syrup, and whip up a sweet spring cocktail. One taste and you will look forward...
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Of course this gardener is ‘getting ready for spring.’ He never stopped.

Spring is the short, simple title we give to the complex and drawn-out awakening of the natural world after winter dormancy. We declare the season underway next week, but the natural stirring has been going on for some time, although probably unnoticed unless you grow camellias or witch hazels or keep honeybees. The process of rebirth lasts well into May, when most trees have finished unfurling their solar panels. The most evident aspects of the season — the warming temperatures,...
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Homemade Witch Hazel Toner + Skin Soother from Scratch

If you love using a witch hazel toner to freshen up you face, soothe razor burns and rashes, and cool down inflammation, you will love being able to make your own. I was first introduced to witch hazel as a stunning, winter-flowering garden ornamental but this is truly a very magical tree. It’s common name has a few proposed backstories (the trees look like witches; from the Old English “wych” meany “to bend”; or derived from it’s use...
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Simple and Energizing Rosemary + Spearmint Sugar Scrub Recipe

Looking for a way to perk yourself up in the morning before you even get that first cup of coffee? Wake up with herbs! Here is an uber-moisturizing, exfoliating sugar scrub recipe that will wake up your skin and your mind with its invigorating rosemary and sweet spearmint scent. Make up a batch of this refreshing scrub to bring a boost to your morning shower routine, or give it away to someone who could use a little lift.Sugar...
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A Lush Urban Garden or Senior Citizen Housing: Which Would You Choose?

The Elizabeth Street Garden’s paved paths meander around a granite balustrade from the early 20th century, limestone lion statues, benches and beds of roses and daffodils. For years, the half-acre of green grass and leafy trees, tucked in between Spring and Prince Streets in Manhattan, has been a lush backdrop for fashion shows, photo shoots, games of hopscotch and quiet afternoons. But the city plans to sell the land soon to build a seven-story, 123-apartment elevator building for low-income seniors. The...
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The Art of Espalier: Growing Fruit Trees in Small Spaces

Growing espalier fruit trees in the home garden is a wonderful way to grow edibles in small spaces and in decorative ways. Training and pruning fruit trees to grow along walls or fences keeps the fruit at an easily accessible height, and turns an otherwise standard tree into a garden showpiece. Espaliers can be fruit trees or ornamental, evergreen or deciduous. This article will cover how to create and maintain an espaliered fruit tree using pruning.Before you read...
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How urban agriculture could improve food security in U.S. cities

During the partial federal shutdown in December and January, news reports showed furloughed government workers standing in line for donated meals. These images were reminders that for an estimated one out of eight Americans, food insecurity is a near-term risk. In California, where I teach, 80 percent of the population lives in cities. Feeding the cities of the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area, with a total population of some 7 million, involves importing 2.5 to 3 million tons of...
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Gorgeous Lavender Oatmeal Soap Cupcakes (That Anyone Can Make)

This lavender oatmeal soap is soothing and calming for your skin. And any recipe that uses my garden-grown lavender rates especially high in my books! Lavender is my favorite ingredient, especially when it comes to natural beauty recipes, a slight addiction which can be seen in a simple search for lavender crafts. But along with being one of my favorite scents, dried lavender buds make this soap as beautiful to look at as it feels when you lather...
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Mothers of Nature: Women Who Shaped Today’s Gardens

Many of the garden designs and community garden initiatives that we take part in today owe their existence to a particular woman in history whose love of gardening and growing things manifested itself in an especially beautiful or beneficial way. These women gardeners’ artistic flair and enthusiasm for getting their hands dirty can still be felt in gardens all over the world today, so I wanted to take a moment to highlight a few influential women gardeners who...
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Black Owned And Operated Community Land Trust Donations

We are a Non-Profit Organization dedicated to increasing Property Ownership and Enterpreneurialism in Black and Underserved Communities.
Donate Now
All the contributions are tax deductible. No goods or services will be provided to the donor in exchange for the contribution.
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