Healing herbs

Healing herbs
Echinacea and Calendula

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Lawns are a Soul-Crushing Timesuck and Most of Us Would Be Better Off Without Them


A recent essay by an Ohio woman who refuses to mow her lawn has struck a nerve. Thirteen hundred people have weighed in with a comment on Sarah Baker's tale of flouting a neighborhood mowing ordinance in the face of a $1,000 fine.

As Baker notes in her essay, lawns are a big part of contemporary American life. There are somewhere around 40 million acres of lawn in the lower 48, according to a 2005 NASA estimate derived from satellite imaging. "Turf grasses, occupying 1.9% of the surface of the continental United States, would be the single largest irrigated crop in the country," that study concludes. Conservatively, American lawns take up three times as much space as irrigated corn. The authors mapped the entirety of the nation's turf grass, below. You'll notice that it's basically a population density map of the U.S. — where there are people, there are lawns.

You'll notice, if you look closely, that the colors start at light green in the urban cores and get darker as you move outward — lawn density increases in the suburbs.

In some states, a significant chunk of the landscape is covered in turf grass — meaning residential lawns, commercial lawns, golf courses, and the like. Delaware is 10 percent lawn. Connecticut and Rhode Island are 20 percent. And over 20 percent of the total land area of Massachusetts and New Jersey is covered in grass, according to that 2005 NASA study.

Read more here

You will be better off growing food, than mowing the lawn.

Saturday, 13 May 2017

California Legalized Selling Food Made At Home And Created Over A Thousand Local Businesses

A government official appears at a man’s door.  The man has been breaking the law: He has sold bread baked at home.

This isn’t a page from Kafka—it happened to Mark Stambler in Los Angeles.

For decades, Stambler has followed traditional methods to bake loaves of French bread.  The ingredients are simple: distilled water, sea salt, wild yeast and organic grains.

Stambler even mills the grain himself.  To make it easier to steam loaves, he built a wood-fired oven in his own backyard.  Stambler’s loaves came in first place at the Los Angeles County Fair and the California State Fair.

Soon after that, Stambler got the idea to expand his hobby into a home business, which became Pagnol Boulanger.  Word of mouth spread.  In June 2011, The Los Angeles Times profiled Stambler and his bread in a full-page feature.

Read more here

Chia Seeds: Superfood That Are Packed With Goodness

Acai, Wheatgrass and Goji berries are common place on the shelf of any health conscious person's kitchen cupboards.

And it seems rarely a year passes without at least one new health-food frenzy.

The latest product which is set to take Briton by storm is Chia seeds. 

Already a hit in LA and New York, they were once worshipped by the Aztecs as the food of the Gods, the tiny seeds are from the same family as mint.

They are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, protein, minerals and antioxidants. They are also meant to help make dieters lose weight as they make feel fuller (mixed with liquid they expand).

Now the seeds could be approved for use in products in the UK.

They are currently only sold here as a bread ingredient but the Advisory Committee on Novel Foods, an expert panel which helps the Food Standards Agency, looks set to give it the go ahead.

Read more here

Sunday, 16 April 2017

The Garden (poem) by Andrew Marvell


"The Garden", by Andrew Marvell, is one of the most famous English poems of the seventeenth century.

This poem was first published in Miscellaneous Poems. It was published for Robert Boulter, in 1681 This was the first edition. Miscellaneous Poems was sent to the press by Mary Marvell, who claimed she was Andrews Widow.

Andrew Marvell's poem The Garden is a romantic poem. The poet personal emotions and feelings are told throughout the words of nature. The poet explains the value of nature and is explaining it through the poem.

The Garden

How vainly men themselves amaze
To win the Palm, the Oke, or Bayes;
And their uncessant Labours see
Crown'd from some single Herb or Tree,
Whose short and narrow verged Shade
Does prudently their Toyles upbraid;
While all Flow'rs and all Trees do close
To weave the Garlands of repose.

Fair quiet, have I found thee here,
And Innocence thy Sister dear!
Mistaken long, I sought you then
In busie Companies of Men.
Your sacred Plants, if here below,
Only among the Plants will grow.
Society is all but rude,
To this delicious Solitude:

No white nor red was ever seen
So am'rous as this lovely green.
Fond Lovers, cruel as their Flame,
Cut in these Trees their Mistress name.
Little, Alas, they know or heed,
How far these Beauties Hers exceed!
Fair trees! where s'eer your barkes I wound,
No Name shall but your own be found.

When we have run our Passion' heat,
Love hither makes his best retreat.
The Gods, that mortal Beauty chase,
Still in a Tree did end their race.
Apollo hunted Daphne so,
Only that She might Laurel grow;
And Pan did after Syrinx speed,
Not as a Nymph, but for a Reed.

What wond'rous life in this I lead!
Ripe Apples drop about my head;
The Luscious Clusters of the Vine
Upon my Mouth do crush their Wine;
The Nectaren, and curious Peach,
Into my hands themselves do reach;
Stumbling on Melons, as I pass,
Insnared with Flow'rs, I fall on Grass.

Meanwhile the Mind, from pleasure less,
Withdraws into its happiness:
The Mind, that Ocean where each kind
Does streight its own resemblance find;
Yet it creates, transcending these,
Far other Worlds, and other Seas;
Annihilating all that's made
To a green Thought in a green Shade.

Here at the Fountains sliding foot,
Or at some Fruit-trees mossy root,
Casting the Bodies Vest aside,
My Soul into the boughs does glide;
There like a Bird it sits, and sings,
Then whets, and combs its silver Wings;
And, till prepar'd for longer flight,
Waves in its Plumes the various Light.

Such was that happy Garden-state,
While Man there walked without a Mate:
After a place, so pure and sweet,
What other Help could yet be meet!
But 'twas beyond a Mortal's share
To wander solitary there:
Two Paradises 'twere in one
To live in Paradise alone.

How well the skilful Gardner drew
Of flow'rs and herbs this dial new;
Where from above the milder Sun
Does through a fragrant Zodiack run;
And, as it works, th' industrious Bee
Computes its time as well as we.
How could such sweet and wholsome Hours
Be reckon'd but with herbs and flow'rs!

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Hanami: Cherry blossom viewing


 

 


Japan's Cherry blossoms, or "Sakura" in Japanese, never cease to inspire. The gnarled trees bloom before they have leaves, their thin branches spilling over with delicate pink-white blossoms and nothing else.

For more than a week, they have brightened up a country still trying to shake off the chill of early Spring. Cherry blossom viewing, or "Hanami", is an annual ritual that takes many forms, from contemplative walks along rows of Cherry trees to boisterous picnics in crowded public parks.

The ephemeral beauty of Japan's Cherry blossoms
We should all adopt 'Hanami,' the Japanese tradition of flower viewing
Sakura Forecast 2016 - Japanese Craze for the Cherry Blossom
2017 Cherry Blossom Forecast
Sakura Matsuri Stockholm 2016
DC’s Pop-Up Cherry Blossom Bar is the Most Festive Place to Drink This Spring
I Captured Plum Trees Blooming In Japan