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Enjoy Easy Success Growing Herbs in Small Spaces

Written by: Famous Foods | 2018-03-15 | no comments

To develop your green thumb, grow an herb garden. Herbs are easy to grow and troubled by few pests. You can plant them in pots or directly in the soil depending on your location. Either way, select a sunny location near your kitchen because you’ll want quick access to snip leaves while you’re cooking.

Plants or Seeds?

Small potted herbs are readily available at garden centres. Beginners leery of starting plants from seed might prefer to buy plants.

To grow herbs from seed, prepare small starter pots with seed-starting potting soil. Keep them moist at all times and place them in a sunny window or under a grow light. Seeds will need a humid and warm environment. To create this environment, cover the starter pots with a clear cover. If using a grow light, make sure to position it close to the seedlings so they don’t become spindly. Transplant the seedlings to permanent pots once their root systems fill the starter pots. When the weather warms up, transfer them to their outside location.

Pots and Drainage

Products such as plastic window boxes, plastic pots, grow bags, and terracotta pots are all appropriate choices. They have reservoirs or holes that allow excess water to drain away so that roots don’t suffocate. If you select terracotta pots, stay attentive to them on hot days. They could heat up and dry out plants quickly.

To prepare a loose and nutrient-rich soil, add coarse compost and gravel to potting soil. If you’re concerned about chemical fertilizers, choose organic potting soil mixes.

Choosing Herbs

When it comes to choosing herbs, allow your preferences to guide you.

For beginners, basil, mint, cilantro, dill, and oregano will offer easy success, even if you’re starting them from seed. If you’re looking to expand your horizons, choose herbs that you’d like to experiment with.

Care and Harvest

Potted plants benefit from daily watering. Applying water in the evening usually works best. Put plates or trays underneath your pots to catch excess water and allow the roots to soak it up later.

You’ll want to trim herbs often. This will discourage plants from bolting into flower, which will alter the quality of the leaf flavour. To harvest, trim with scissors or break off leaves and stems with your fingers.

Growing fresh herbs not only enhances your cooking but also connects you to nature. To shop for herb seeds and natural bulk food supplies, visit Famous Foods in Vancouver.

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DIY Homemade Cleaning Supplies

Written by: Famous Foods | 2018-03-01 | no comments

As we Spring forward to longer daylight and warmer days, it also means it’s time to clean and unclutter our homes and invite friends over for barbeque parties.

Cleaning could be more enjoyable with homemade cleaning supplies. With homemade cleaning solutions, you save money, avoid exposure to harmful chemicals and create an eco-friendly environment.

Commercial cleaning solutions can cause irritation in your eyes and inflammation in your respiratory system due to inhalation of fumes. Chemical cleaners could also trigger headaches, dizziness, and fatigue. So, skip the toxic chemicals and make your cleaners with simple ingredients that work just as well and smell better.

Homemade Cleaning Supply Ingredients

To spare yourself exposure to irritating chemical cleaners, work with these easy-to-find ingredients.

  • Baking Soda – Works as an abrasive and reacts with vinegar to break up organic matter
  • White Vinegar – Disinfects and breaks up hard water minerals
  • Hydrogen Peroxide – Disinfects
  • Essential Oils – Tea tree oil disinfects and other oils offer pleasing scents
  • Castile Soap –Multi-functional and extra concentrated, so only a small amount is required
  • Washing Soda – Sodium Carbonate that serves as natural cleaner
  • Citric Acid – Treats hard water and boosts detergent

Toilet Cleaner

Pour into the toilet bowl:

  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 10 drops tea tree essential oil
  • 1/4 cup vinegar

The ingredients will fizz immediately. Scrub until the reaction has ceased.

Bathroom Sink and Tub Cleaner

For a basic daily cleaning spray, add to a spray bottle:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup vinegar
  • A few drops of your preferred essential oil

Spray and wipe away after 10 minutes.

For tougher tub grime, mix:

  • 1 cup baking soda
  • Add enough drops of liquid castile soap to make a paste

Scrub and rinse surfaces. Spray areas of hard water mineral buildup with pure vinegar. Allow vinegar to set for 30 or more minutes before wiping.

Kitchen Counter Cleaner

For non-stone counters, fill a spray bottle with equal parts:

  • Vinegar
  • Water

Spray and wipe. For stone counters, replace vinegar with rubbing alcohol.

Natural Disinfectant

Disinfect surfaces with a blend of:

  • 2 cups water
  • 3 Tablespoons liquid castile soap
  • 20 to 30 drops tea tree oil

Laundry Detergent

Mix together:

  • 1 bar glycerin soap, grated
  • 1 cup washing soda
  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1/2 cup citric acid
  • 1/4 cup coarse salt

Store in an airtight container. Use 2 Tablespoons detergent per laundry load.

Bleach Alternative

Mix:

  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon castile soap
  • 1/2 teaspoon hydrogen peroxide

Apply with a wet cloth and scrub and rinse.

Making your own natural cleaning supplies will reduce your physical contact with harmful chemicals. Visit Famous Foods in Vancouver to find a great selection of natural ingredients and toxic-free products.

 

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