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Old 11-08-2010, 04:18 AM   #21 (permalink)
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^ I've always dried the nettle before using-it grows almost everywhere around the farm!

I don't see why the fresh can't be used....so be generous, it's highly unlikely that you'll add too much.....it's all vits anyways!
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Old 11-08-2010, 06:21 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Talking Epsom Salt Fertilizer.......~

Houseplant food
Vegetable fertilizer
Rose plant food

What You Need:

1 Tablespoon Epsom Salt
1 gallon water
A watering can
What You Do:

1. Combine the Epsom salt and water.
2. Use the solution to water your plants.
3. Repeat once a month.

Why This Works:

Epsom salt is made up of magnesium and sulfate both vital plant nutrients. Some magnesium-loving plants to try it on: houseplants, roses, peppers, tomatoes and potatoes.

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Old 11-08-2010, 06:22 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Lightbulb Coffee Ground Fertilizer

Rose plant food

What You Need:

Used coffee grounds
A cookie Sheet
Newspaper
What You Do:

1. Line a cookie sheet with newspaper.
2. Then, spread your used coffee grounds out on the sheet, and allow them to dry completely.
3. Sprinkle the grounds around the base of your acid-loving plants. Azaleas, roses, rhododendrons and blueberries are just some of the plants that will benefit from this treatment.

Note: Be careful not to over do it with the grounds. Even acid-loving plants can get too much acid.

Why This Works:

Coffee grounds are rich in nitrogen, magnesium, and potassium all important plant nutrients. They are also acidic, and help to maintain the acidity of the soil.

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Old 11-08-2010, 06:23 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Exclamation Egg Shell Fertilizer......~

Lime

What You Need:

Egg Shells
A blender
What You Do:

1. Save your eggs shells, and allow them to air dry.
2. Then, place the dried shells in the blender, and pulse until they are powdery-fine.
3. Sprinkle in your garden.

Why This Works:

Eggs shells are made up almost entirely of calcium carbonate the main ingredient in agricultural lime.

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Old 11-08-2010, 06:23 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Exclamation Vinegar Fertilizer.......`

Houseplant fertilizer
Rose plant food

What You Need:

1 Tablespoon white vinegar
1 gallon water
A watering can
What You Do:

1. Combine the white vinegar and water.
2. Use the solution to water your plants.
3. Repeat every three months.

Why This Works:

The acetic acid in vinegar works to increase the acidity of the soil just the thing for acid-loving plants.

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Old 11-08-2010, 06:24 AM   #26 (permalink)
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Talking Fish Tank Water Fertilizer

Any fertilizer

What You Need:

Used fish tank water
What You Do:

1. Save the dirty water from your fish tank.
2. Then, use it to water your plants.

Why This Works:

Used fish tank water is full of nitrogen and other nutrients that plants need to thrive.

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Old 11-08-2010, 06:25 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Arrow Fireplace Ash Fertilizer......`

Garden fertilizer
Lime

What You Need:

Fireplace ash
What You Do:

1. Sprinkle your fireplace ash over your garden beds, and work into the soil.

Note: Fireplace ash should not be used if your soil is alkaline, or be used around acid-loving plants.

Why This Works:

Fireplace ash is rich in potassium and calcium carbonate.


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Old 11-08-2010, 06:27 AM   #28 (permalink)
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(This posting will have to be moved eventually to a more appropriate thread~)

In the case of fighting aphids, two homemade sprays have proven very effective in controlling aphid infestations. Organic gardeners have been using tomato leaf spray or garlic oil spray to battle aphids for generations. While knowing how to make and use them is important, it's equally important to understand why they work.

Tomato Leaf Spray

Tomato plants, as members of the nightshade family, contain toxic compounds called alkaloids in their leaves. When the leaves of tomato plants are chopped, they release their alkaloids. When the alkaloids are suspended and diluted with water, they make an easy to use spray that is toxic to aphids, but still safe around plants and humans.

What You'll Need:

One to two cups of tomato leaves
Two cups of water
A strainer or cheesecloth
Spray bottle
To make tomato leaf spray, simply soak one to two cups of chopped tomato leaves in two cups of water. Let it steep overnight. To make the spray, strain the leaves out of the liquid using cheesecloth or a fine strainer. Add another one to two cups of water to the liquid and add it to a spray bottle.

To use the tomato leaf spray in your battle against aphids, spray the stems and foliage of the infested plant with the spray, paying special attention to the undersides of leaves, since that is where aphids most commonly congregate.

Caution: While this spray is very safe for humans, some people are allergic to members of the nightshade family. If you are one of them, use care in making and applying this spray.

Garlic Oil Spray

Organic gardeners have long relied on garlic as part of their pest-fighting arsenal. Garlic contains sulfur, which, besides being toxic to pests, is also an antibacterial and antifungal agent. The dish soap in this mixture also breaks down the bodies of soft-bodied pests, such as aphids.

What You'll Need:

Three to four cloves of garlic
Mineral oil
Strainer or cheesecloth
Liquid dish soap
Water
Spray bottle
To make garlic oil spray, mince or finely chop three to four cloves of garlic, and add them to two teaspoons of mineral oil. Let this mixture sit for 24 hours. Strain out the garlic pieces, and add the remaining liquid to one pint of water. Add one teaspoon of liquid dish soap. This mixture can be stored and diluted as needed. When you need to spray, use two tablespoons of the mixture added to one pint of water in a spray bottle.

To use your garlic oil spray, first test by spraying an inconspicuous part of the plant to see if your mixture harms it at all. If there are no signs of yellowing or other leaf damage after a day or two, it is safe to use. If there is leaf damage, dilute the mixture with more water and try the test again. Once you have determined that it won't harm your plant, spray the entire plant, paying special attention to the undersides of leaves.

Warning: Garlic oil is a non-selective insecticide, which means that it will kill beneficial insects (such as lady bugs, who are natural predators of aphids) just as easily as it kills the bad guys. It's best to keep as many beneficials around as possible. This spray should only be used if you haven't seen any beneficial bugs in your garden. The tomato leaf recipe, above, won't harm beneficials, so you should use that if you're lucky enough to have some beneficials in your garden.

These sprays are easy to use, inexpensive, and effective. As you can see, even organic home remedies require care and attention to their effects. In general, use each spray as little as possible, and use it responsibly. You'll win the battle against aphids, and still have a healthy garden after they're gone.
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Old 11-08-2010, 01:59 PM   #29 (permalink)
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I learned. Thank you.
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Old 11-08-2010, 04:33 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Awesome thread Pharm Girl!
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Old 11-09-2010, 04:14 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Combine these ingredients by volume, rather than weight:

4 parts seed meal or fish meal
1 part dolomite lime
1 part rock phosphate or part bone meal
1 part kelp meal


Even if your soil is not acid the lime will help offset the acidity of most seed meals and also supply needed calcium and magnesium. The kelp has many other necessary trace elements. If your soil is very alkaline cut the lime in half.

Several of these ingredients were once available only in small boxes with big prices at garden centers. The popularity of going organic has changed that. Buy these ingredients in bags of 25 to 50 pounds to get the best price. If the garden center doesn’t carry them this way, find a local agricultural co-op or farm store that does.

Mixing your own should cut the cost, as compared to premixed formulations, to less than half. If these ingredients cost an average of 50 cents per pound, and you use 10 pounds per 100 square feet of garden, your cost will be less than 5 cents per square foot for great organic garden fertilizer.
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Old 11-09-2010, 04:36 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:12 AM   #33 (permalink)
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Spring is an excellent time to make up a batch of liquid manure from the new lush growth. Use liquid manure to as an organic fertilizer to add nutrients and trace element
Every so often, the garden needs a tonic to revitalize and revivify. Making liquid manure from “found” ingredients provides a cheap and effective way of increasing and maintaining garden fertility and capturing minerals from deep within your soil.

Generally, there are three sorts of liquid manure that can be made easily and quickly by the home gardener:

from green plants
from animal manure
from urine


Animal liquid manure

About a bucket of horse manure is put into a open weave bag or sack such as an old feed bag or a Hessian potato sack. This is suspended in a 200 liter (40 gallon) drum and allowed to soak. After a month or so It will be ready to use on the garden. Dilute it to the color of weak tea and use it on small trees. Be careful not to put it on or even near leafy vegetables that will be eaten: beans yes – lettuce no. Cow or chicken manure can be substituted.

Urine.

Human urine is used to make an excellent garden tonic. Urine is collected and diluted and watered onto plants. Like plant based liquid manure, it should be diluted to a weak tea colour. One should avoid using it in the same place regularly.

Liquid manures are useful because they provide a homemade, cheap, organic fertiliser that is in a form that can be used immediately and beneficially by garden plants. It can be used to revivify a flower garden in mid-season.




Green Plant Manure – batch production

An efficacious brew is made from green plants. To make this, collect a variety of strongly growing green plants. These can be prunings – strip the leaves from branches - or weeds pulled from the garden. A combination of tree leaves, grasses and soft and hard weeds will result in a good mix of nutrients.

Typical mix

A typical mix might include: grass cuttings (full of nitrogen), masses of leaves from the tulip hibiscus hedge, plantain, dock, comfrey along with azolla and water hyacinth from the river, and a random selection of anything that can be pulled by hand.

The pull-by-hand theory is that this will tend to deliver the softest and most succulent green stuff. Sometimes lime or wood ash is added to reduce acidity and to add other elements.

Amount to make

200 Liters or 40 gallons is a good amount to make at one time. An old wheelie-bin is perfect. Put in about four buckets of your selected green stuff – while it is fresh. Then fill the bin with water and leave it. And leave it.

In warm weather it might be ready in about a month and in colder autumn it could take almost three. After a while it begins to froth and bubble and smells strongly agricultural. A little longer and it settles down. Often the "barnyard" smell will indicate that the batch is ready, another sign is the presence of a few rat-tailed weevils floating on top.

Warning

Never touch the liquid with your hands. It can be strong smelling and difficult to scrub off. Strong rubber gloves dedicated to the purpose should be used.


To use

The liquid manure is diluted for use. Usually one third of a bucket to two-thirds water is a reasonable ration. The general advice is to dilute it until it is the color of wet tea.

This can go straight onto the garden where it will provide an immediate boost to growing plants and increase the activity of soil biota. It is particularly good for young plants.

It can be used as a foliar spray if suitably diluted.

Be cautious: do not put it on ready-to-pick leafy green vegetables.


Finally, it becomes too weak and ineffective. The green stuff will have lost its green and be smelly grey, white or black “stuff”. This can be put onto the compost heap or used as mulch around trees.
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:20 AM   #34 (permalink)
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#1 Homemade Organic Fertilizer - Manure

The most familiar cheap organic fertilizer in farm country is manure, usually from cows or sheep, occasionally from horses. Most any farm manure can be a good fertilizer, with one drawback.
It needs to be aged before you can use it in an active garden. When it's fresh, it's too 'hot' and will burn the roots of any plant it comes into contact with. Aging is accomplished by just letting it sit for a season, or better yet, tilling it into the garden in the fall.

Just spread it a couple inches thick and till or dig it in. It will have the whole winter to integrate with the garden soil, and you will see a noticeable difference in your soil the next spring. Adding your fall leaves, all chopped up, can make an even bigger impact. Manure can be acquired from farms and ranches, usually just for the asking and hauling. It can also be purchased by the bag at nurseries and garden centers, or anywhere that sells plants should have it.

#2 Homemade Organic Fertilizer – Rabbit Droppings

If you don't want to use large livestock manure, there is an alternative. Let your pets do the fertilizing! While you may not have room for a cow, you can probably fit in a rabbit cage or two. Rabbits are like furry little compost machines. Their droppings (pellets) are ready to use right away, without the need to age.
You can collect them with trays under cages and then scatter in the garden. They can be tilled into a spring garden or added to the compost bin to aid in composting. Rabbits in portable cages can be moved to a different spot in the garden every day or two for the easiest method of adding the pellets to the garden.

#3 Homemade Organic Fertilizer - Compost

Compost is a good cheap organic fertilizer, along with its many other benefits. Compost is a blend of manure, soil, and plant matter, melded and aged to resemble the rich dirt on the floor of an old forest. You can make compost at home, in a loose pile or contained in a bin.
Try to make it close to the garden so it's easier to use when it's ready. Just layer the different ingredients, whatever you have, water sparingly, and toss or turn it every week or two. The microbes in the dirt or manure help break down the plant matter.

When the compost is finished, the ingredients are mixed and look like rich soil, ready to either till into the garden or just use as mulch. You can gently work it into the first couple inches of dirt around the plants to get the nutrients to the roots faster. You can even make a passable compost just by layering your table scraps with a thin coating of soil, over and over.

Let it sit for a couple months and it should be ready. If you want to speed up the process, try using compost tumblers.

Ingredients for your compost are easy to find. Organic matter can be kitchen scraps, fall leaves, lawn and garden clippings, even the weeds you pull as long as there are no seeds. For table scraps, use all you have of organic matter; peelings from potatoes, carrots, apples, etc. Use carrot and celery tops, the outside layers of cabbage and onions, and the leftover cooked veggies no one will eat. Crush up your eggshells and throw them in too. Just the shells, no eggs. Used coffee grounds are a good addition, but not too many.

Do not use anything with meat or noticeable grease, as this will cause your compost to spoil. Use just enough soil to lightly cover a thin layer of plant matter. While not necessary, a layer of manure of some sort every few layers will help activate the compost and make it ready to use sooner.

#4 Homemade Organic Fertilizer - Fish Emulsion

An often overlooked option in organic fertilizer is fish emulsion. Fish emulsion is concentrated fish waste and by-products that you buy by the bottle, add to water, and then water your plants with the resulting concoction. (You can also make manure or compost 'tea' for watering purposes.)


You can get your own free fish emulsion from cleaning out your pond or aquarium. Now that's cheap organic fertilizer! Just water your plants with the water and the nutrients sink right in with it. Houseplants love this too!

Whatever method you use, you will be sure there are no chemicals in your lovely organic fruits and vegetables!
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:35 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Tomato plants, as members of the nightshade family, contain toxic compounds called alkaloids in their leaves. When the leaves of tomato plants are chopped, they release their alkaloids. When the alkaloids are suspended and diluted with water, they make an easy to use spray that is toxic to aphids, but still safe around plants and humans.

What You'll Need:


One to two cups of tomato leaves
Two cups of water
A strainer or cheesecloth
Spray bottle
To make tomato leaf spray, simply soak one to two cups of chopped tomato leaves in two cups of water. Let it steep overnight. To make the spray, strain the leaves out of the liquid using cheesecloth or a fine strainer. Add another one to two cups of water to the liquid and add it to a spray bottle.

To use the tomato leaf spray in your battle against aphids, spray the stems and foliage of the infested plant with the spray, paying special attention to the undersides of leaves, since that is where aphids most commonly congregate.

Caution: While this spray is very safe for humans, some people are allergic to members of the nightshade family. If you are one of them, use care in making and applying this spray.
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:36 AM   #36 (permalink)
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^ ya read all of that??
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Last edited by Pharm Girl; 11-09-2010 at 06:43 AM.
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:50 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Rhubarb Leaf Pesticide Spray


1 cup rhubarb leaves....either the one from the garden or the one that grows wild (Devils Rhubarb)
6.5 cups water
1/4 cup liquid dish detergent or soap flakes....preferably the yellow liquid SUNLIGHT!

Cover rhubarb leaves with water and bring to a boil. Boil for 20 minutes then remove from heat and cool overnight...! Strain, then add 1/4 cup liquid dish detergent. Spray on plants. Good for aphids, june beetles, spider mites, thrips.

Works on potatoe plants like no other on the market!


Rhubarb leaves are poisonous, take care when preparing and handling. Do not use on food bearing plants.
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:52 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Garlic, Peppers & Onion Insecticide

2 hot peppers
1 large onion
1 whole bulb of garlic
1/4 cup water

Toss in the food processor and add water, blend until a mash is made. Cover mash with 1 gallon hot (not boiling) water and let stand 24 hours. Strain. Spray on roses, azaleas, vegetables to kill bug infestations. Bury mash in ground where bugs are heaviest. Good for thrips, aphids, grasshoppers, chewing and sucking insects.
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:54 AM   #39 (permalink)
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Lightbulb

Basil Tea Spray


4 cups water
1 cup fresh basil (or 2 TBS dried)
1 tsp liquid dish detergent

Bring water to a boil then add basil. Remove from heat, cover and steep until cool. Strain. Mix in the liquid detergent then spray on plants. Good for aphids.

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Old 11-09-2010, 06:55 AM   #40 (permalink)
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Salt Spray......~


2 TBS salt
1.5 gallons warm water

Mix salt and water to dissolve, allow to cool to room temperature.

Use for spider mites, caterpillars, cabbage worms and chewing insects.
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