February 14, 2013
Don’t watch this if you are easily grossed out- this is a video of a mosquito laying eggs and then the larvae hatching. OMG! Know what mosquito larvae look like so you can do something about it if you see this in or near your home.
The Oldest Known Fossil Mosquito was found entombed in amber, approximate age of 100-90 million years. Pesky mosquitos affect humans more than any other insect. There are 2500 species of mosquitos in the world. 150 species occur in the US. Each species has a particular way of laying their eggs but all require water – be it a stagnant pond, a vase of standing water, snow melted in a bird feeder, water pooling on a puddle. Males don’t bite and feed on flower nectar. Most of the females (who are the egg layers) need to feed on blood to be able to create and lay their eggs. They can lay up to 200 or 300 eggs at a time and they hatch within 48 hours- sometimes faster depending on the temperature. the larvae need to swim around for a few days to mature. I’m not going to write any more about this because it makes me itchy to think about. BUT, knowing how to prevent unwanted swarms of skeeters is important. eHow has some good suggestions, also here is an article about using household products to kill larvae, and one more from eHow using garlic juice and apple cider vinegar in places where there is standing water. Great, I have loads of leftover garlic from last year’s harvest.
February 14, 2012
Here is the recipe I created for “Mama’s Calendula Skin Food 2011″:
Wonderful for cuts, scrapes, chapped skin, lip balm, burns, cuticles, rough skin on heels and more.
¼ c Calendula infused grapeseed oil
.5 oz beeswax
1/8 t unfiltered honey
½ t cocoa butter
½ t sea buckthorn oil
20 drops peppermint, lavender or Thieves essential oil
Slowly melt beeswax in double boiler. (I used a pyrex measuring cup in a pan of water)
stir in honey, cocoa butter, and oils. Do not boil, just warm until melted.
When all liquid, turn off heat, add drops of essential oil and stir, pour into little containers and allow to cool.
August 5, 2011
It’s the first week of August and I thought the season was over but it turns out that all my snow peas really needed was more water. There have been some huge rainstorms in the past 10 days and there are many new pea shoots, flowers and more snow peas. Yahoo. Here is how I am preserving some for the winter.
Wash and string (peel down the stringy seams on both sides by snapping the top and gently pulling down)
Place in boiling water for 2 minutes
Cool in iced water 2 minutes
Pat dry and freeze in freezer bags or freezer-safe containers.
July 22, 2011
I have just learned the easiest way to freeze blueberries. In the past I washed the berries, drained them, laid them out on cookie sheets in the freezer to freeze individually, then put the frozen berries into freezer bags. LONG PROCESS.
Recently, T and I picked berries at Evergreen Berry Farm in Watertown, CT. We picked on the bushes that were NOT sprayed- as there are areas of the field that never seem to need protection from insects and some that do. Interesting permaculture conundrum there….
As we were leaving T noticed a sign with freezing instructions as follows (so easy):