DIY natural cleaners
Making your own cleaning products using vinegar, baking soda and water is healthy, easy--and cheap. Learn how to whip up your own cleaners using foods you already have in your kitchen cupboard.
You can get your whole house fresh and shiny clean with just five ingredients: lemons, vinegar, baking soda, tea tree oil and salt.
It's easy to make your own air freshener spray. You'll avoid chemicals and delight in the fresh smell.
You don't need to rely on toxic chemicals to clean your house. Opt for natural homemade cleaners or nontoxic options such as Bon Ami.
Make your own all-purpose cleaners, dishwasher detergent and mildew remover with safe, simple ingredients. Ever think you'd be doing dishes with Kool-Aid?
MOTHER EARTH NEWS readers recently named dishwashing formula as their most desired DIY cleaner, so we’ve rounded up some easy and inexpensive dish de-griming recipes for your automatic dishwasher or for washing by hand.
Save money and have a healthier home with these ideas for assembling your own green cleaning tool kit. Plus, get our recipe for Lemon-Mint Window Wash.
Your simply imperfect arsenal for getting the whole house clean--naturally.
With just three ingredients and two simple steps, you can clear away germs and freshen your home's air to welcome spring.
Let's quash, once and for all, the notion that only harmful chemicals can kill germs and bacteria. Hydrogen peroxide, tea tree oil and grapefruit seed extract are natural antibacterials that keep your home clean--and safeguard your family's health.
Conventional household cleaners contain toxic chemicals that could have adverse effects on your health. Learn how to mix up your own homemade cleaners with these suggestions from Natural Home magazine editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence.
The National Products Association releases its natural standards and certification for household cleaners and laundry detergents.
Noxious fumes aren’t conducive to happy cleaning. Give all your homemade cleaning solutions an invigorating and healthy boost by adding a few drops of pure plant essential oils such as lavender or lemon. Heavenly!
There are some things that you just aren’t going to wash very often, like your curtains, couch cushions, and probably even your favorite jeans. To spare the air, concoct a simple essential oil-infused linen spray, and spritz away until your definition of what “clean” smells like shifts permanently.
Hemp seed is a powerful source of protein, Omega-3, vitamins and minerals, and has a delicious nutty flavor!
Tart, tangy and tangerine — Nordic Naturals new vitamin gummies.
Cap off your Hemp History Week celebrations by making hemp soap. Hemp oil contains essential fatty acids and poly-unsaturated fatty acids known for their excellent emollient and lubricating properties.
Watch this video to learn how a straw bale house goes together from start to finish.
Realize that DIY inspiration is just a click away by checking out these great home remodeling blogs.
Skip the packaging and synthetic chemicals and learn how to make your own, cold-processed shampoo bars.
If you still want to do everything you can to make your home healthy—for your family and the planet—take a look at how you clean. Like it or not, we have to clean our homes on a regular basis. Natural Home offers lots of great ideas for making your own healthy, natural cleaning solutions—or look to some of the great green solutions now available at your grocery store.
Share your thoughts. What homemade and natural cleaning products do you find work best in your home?
Whip olive oil, vinegar and lemon juice into a cheap, effective polish for wood furniture.
This post is about winterizing a colony of bees naturaly, using ideas and tips that we at BeeLanding have learned from nature.
Buying "natural" cereal could get you a bowl full of GMOs. To keep genetically modified ingredients off your family's table, buy organic.
What’s with glycerin? It’s a soap-making byproduct with antibacterial properties, but it’s often made with animal fat derivatives, which isn’t really our thing. So, we figured out how to make our own veggie version with coconut oil, opening up a whole world of kitchen pantry beauty concoctions.
Using herbs and food to dye Easter eggs gives them beautiful, earthy color--without scary chemicals. And it's surprisingly easy.
NaturalNews readers overwhelmingly chose Monsanto as the world's Most Evil Corporation.
What does it take to build truly sustainable houses – the kind people really want and can afford? If you build small and use natural building materials, then most likely you’ll be able to build your own home in a reasonable amount of time for cash.
Connect together inexpensive mending plates to make these top-shelf candleholders--perfect for patio and porch dining. This simple project takes minutes and costs next to nothing.
Turn terra cotta planter pots into candle holders. This super simple project is an inexpensive way to bring a little romance to your garden.
Use an old aluminum can and branch trimmings to make a rustic and beautiful vase. This simple project using humble materials costs nearly nothing and looks like a million bucks.
Make your own “ginger bug” and natural soda from nothing more than ginger root, sugar, water, and fruit juice. The ginger bug, soda starter culture of healthy bacteria, consumes the natural sugars present in fruit juice and causes carbonation to make a fun experiment and soda pop you don’t need to be afraid to give your children.
Convert your old jeans into brand new items without spending a cent.
Build this classy Shaker-style laptop - desk - for letter writing or to support your laptop computer.
You can shingle your roof with hand-split shakes, crafted using a froe and mallet, and dry, straight-grained wood.
Give your bathroom a little flair--and have fun doing it--by creating a backsplash from pebbles, pennies or whatever's rattling around in the bottom of the toolbox. This fun, simple project is perfect for everyone--whether you're a DIYer or not.
Take a lesson from Southerners, who know a thing or two about keeping cool naturally. These homes take advantage of old-fashioned and cutting-edge passive cooling techniques to stay temperate even during hot Southern summers.
Using newspaper, learn how to craft easy, biodegradable pots to start seeds.
Pick some pretty leaves, paint them and press their likenesses onto an inexpensive shower curtain liner to make a shower curtain much prettier than anything found in stores.
The roundwood truss system described here enables DIYers to build their own trusses at very low cost. You can gather truckloads of poles from national forests, enough for several small houses, for the cost of one $25 firewood permit.
Cut old milk jugs into the shape of your choice, rough them up with sandpaper and string them together to make surprisingly pretty window shades that offer privacy while letting the sun shine in.
I envision this chandelier—made entirely of items recovered from the recycling bin—hanging over a dining table on the patio. Making it is a pretty big project, though, and I would have to call in a friend with a jigsaw to help. (I don’t have the tools—or skills—that former Natural Home & Garden art director Susan Wasinger, who dreamed up this project, does.) Aside from the saw, the materials for this one are simple: used baby-food jars, a few yards of twisted wire, a couple repurposed barrel hoops and a length of rusty chain. And happily, I can make the “lite” version–pretty votive holders—which lets me stop before power tools are needed.
I had such a great time talking with attendees at the Mother Earth News Fair in Puyallup, Washington, this past weekend about how to make green cleaners. As always, I learned a new trick or two, and I promised everyone I’d recap our conversation here for easy access. Today let’s talk about some of the unexpected food items—most of which you already have in your kitchen cupboards—that can be used to clean your home.
Use tea to remove old furniture polish and prepare wooden furniture for polishing. Simply soak a rag in room-temperature tea, then run it over the wood. The tea’s tannic acid makes your wood shine while removing all the dirt. Once that’s done, you can use mayonnaise to make the piece shine. Just rub the mayo into the wood, then follow with a damp rag and a few drops of vinegar to remove any residue. Olive oil is also a great natural furniture
Need more storage space? Who doesn’t? You can make better use of the space you have available with some wooden shelves. Building free-standing shelves is easy and can be inexpensive. This is a great woodworking project for beginners.
"Green" cleaning products are awash with misleading labels and false claims. Always look for a third-party certification to assure you're buying the healthiest, most environmentally friendly cleaners.
Building housing projects in developing regions is extremely rewarding, but also quite challenging. It’s prudent to draw ideas from as many resources as possible to improve the process. The following guidelines have proven effective.
Follow the sawhorse plans from our 1985 article (with a few variations), and you can build sturdy, inexpensive sawhorses.
Build a reflecting telescope to enjoy the nighttime celstial show.
Create memorable gifts for a youngster with a handcrafted toy or game.
Most Americans believe that cleaning products are required to list ingredients on labels. They're not. But Whole Foods is taking matters into its own hands with a color-coded rating system that holds manufacturers accountable for green claims.
Instructables is a great website for finding DIY projects, and recently site administrators have reorganized the site to make it easier to find the project you're looking for.
Nordic Naturals introduces Vitamin D3 Gummies, the delicious, chewable, wild berry gummy that provides 1,000 I.U. of vitamin D in each serving and is sourced from cholecalciferol, the natural form of vitamin D preferred for optimal absorption. The pectin-based product is gelatin free and does not contain artificial coloring, flavoring, or preservatives.
Bed bugs are taking over America. You can prevent them naturally.
Save forests, use local materials, build a durable house made of whole trees.
I’m a little bit obsessed with The Wizard of Oz. And so, as I promised to discuss the topic of changing our name back to Natural Home this week, I just can’t help myself from weaving in references to my favorite film. (Some days, it’s all about keeping myself amused.)
Use plants from the forest, field and desert as natural dyes to color your fine fabric creations.
With the right constuction techniques, the straw bales in a straw bale home will last as long as the building does. Check out this expert advice on how to build durable straw bale houses.
Are your granite countertops safe? Have you noticed a strange glow about them? Could they power a nuclear energy plant? Some granite has been found to be radioactive.
The night sky of Monday, August 11 and early Tuesday the 12th will light up with a spectacular meteor shower. It will be well worth Tuesday's fatigue.
Using low-cost — but durable — earthbag construction, you can create a beautiful green roof.
Here's where you can find or build a press for making compressed earth blocks, and some helpful advice on sealants.
Carrington Farms, the creators of delicious 100 percent organic, non-genetically modified health food products, continues to reach outside of the box to provide healthy flax seed blends and cooking oils that are not only good for consumers but are affordable and taste great!
The newest articles of Natural Home are in. See what's inside.
These DIY furniture pieces can be cut and fabricated from any flat, sturdy material.
Macrameing has been a popular craft medium for decades. Share your most outlandish macrame project.
Have you ever let your imagination run wild and built a fanciful, unique … (spinning wheel, bat house, garden tool)
If you want to learn how to paint your house without the help of professionals, this article from the archives is for you. Exterior home painting can be a snap with the right tools and information.
You can build this simple, light-weight roof rack to transport your bicucles.
If you are planning to build a backyard deck, consider whether the best strategy for footings is using deck blocks or cement piers.
Natural Home and the Obamas are in sync on fun, waste-reducing holiday projects. Find out more about decoupage ornaments.
Wood pallets can be used as is or stripped and remade into new forms. What creative uses have you found for wood pallets?
You can fabricate this metal log lifter to make firewood cutting easier and safer.
Engaging in new projects around the house or yard can put us in unfamiliar territory where we might make mistakes that are potentially dangerous or just embarrassing.
Jim Oseychuk built this intricate garden shed for his wife and won his category of the Wood-Mizer Personal Best contest.
Holiday gifts frequently come with "some assembly required" and can cause frustration for late-night Santas. What is your most memorable some-assembly-required experience?
Keeping your tools in good working order saves time and money.
Make your own hand-crafted broad axe with these easy to follow directions.
Learn how to make giant bubbles like a professional bubble artist at home with this DIY video. Complete with a recipe to make a giant bubble wand and your own homemade soap solution, you’ll be ready to impress everyone on your street with human-sized bubbles.
Purchasing the materials for a DIY project can involve making a number of decisions. When you’re deciding on the materials for an outdoor wooden project, are you more apt to be swayed by cost or durability?
You don't have to be a master carpenter to take on a DIY project. What building project have you done all on your own that you are the most proud of the results?
Here is a plan for a metal candle lantern made from a coffee can, metal clothes hanger and a stick of wood.
Easy DIY Halloween costumes for the lazy
Put a barrel or two on wheels and you can feed your flocks and herds with ease, including diagrams, photographs and instructions.
Learn how to make a bootjack from a branch and scrap of wood.
To make the pulp for homemade paper, look no further than your waste and recycling bins.
Build a highchair that will follow your child through years of growth and development.
Using wood you’ve harvested to start creative wood projects is not impossible. Many sawyers have created beautiful wood structures made from lumber they’ve cut themselves.
Can the clutter that threatens to chase you from your workshop be remade into usable items?
Donn Saindon built this beautiful 1,200 square foot home from reclaimed wood and won his category of the Wood-Mizer Personal Best contest.
Joe Bonn built this impressive home in Colorado and won his category of the Wood-Mizer Personal Best contest.
Robert Craig built this 960 square foot barn in Oregon and won his category of the Wood-Mizer Personal Best contest.
FrogTape’s latest painting tape provides endless design possibilities and masking protection.
Here's what you need to know about laminate flooring, from suggestions on how to choose it to tips for installing your own.
Store-bought deoderants contain aluminum and other harmful substances that find their way into your bloodstream. Try this recipe for natural homemade deodorant that uses baking soda with coconut oil and essential oil to create a effective and safe alternative.
From shampoo and lotion to wood polish and drain cleaner, you’ll be surprised at how many common household products contain potentially hazardous ingredients. Here’s how to identify problem products and find the best alternatives to buy — or save a little money by making your own.
These natural cold and flu remedies will help you build up your immune system and reduce the duration and discomfort of colds and flu.
To make liquid hand soap all you need is a bar of soap and a cheese grater. What could be easier?
STIHL provides support to new online resource for do-it-yourself audience.
You can upcycle (make crafts from recycled materials) to beautifuly and simplify your world! Have a few old T-shirts that are past their prime? Make them into a rosette pillow! Use homemade recycled paper to send friends and family chic, personalized greetings cards. Overrun with stuff to recycle? Transform tin can lids into a melodious windchime! Have fun and get creative turning your old stuff into treasures!
Giving handmade gifts will save money while showing the recipient that you care. Homemade sugar scrub, rice pillows, glass magnets and iPod covers are all easy to make and exciting to receive. Spend time, not money, to give the perfect holiday or birthday gift.
Liberty LNG is looking to industrialize the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of New York and New Jersey. Learn how you can get involved to stop LNG and protect the ocean.
A cordwood building consists of short, round pieces of wood (think firewood) held together with mortar, and there are many advantages to choosing this type of construction.
What is true sustainability? In this post, Matthew Stein explores the definition of what it takes to make a world that is truly sustainable.
Mama Chia organic chia seeds are infused with delicious fruits and vegetables to create a convenient, fun and tasty snack for active souls of all ages.
During tough economic times, local university not only survives, but thrives. Bastyr University announced today it will open a new campus in San Diego, CA, with plans for the first class to begin in Fall 2012.
New Clear Door Dehydrators coming from Excalibur Dehydrators.
Yes, you can make your own solar panels, but it won’t necessarily save you much money compared with buying commercial solar panels.
Use everyday recyclable materials to create personalized DIY stationery.
A review of hammers of friend Jack Fulton.
Offering paint that saves the rain forest and a full list of ingredients, this natural finishes start-up aims to change the industry. Unearthed is making a bold move by providing full ingredient disclosure for all of its products.
Home improvement stores offer free DIY classes. What project have you not started yet but dream of doing?
Instructions for building a cold smoker (and three other things you can do with steel oil drums).
Tell us about your all-time favorite fix-it tool.
For May Day on May 1, make one of these 10 May Day Baskets with recycled materials.
Share the story of your success with a DIY project home business.
You can build a low-cost, squirrel-proof bird feeder using simple tools and inexpensive materials. All you need is some plastic drain pipe and caps, hardware cloth and a bit of wire (or a wire hanger). In no time at all, you’ll have all sorts of birds at the feeder — and the squirrels will be perplexed!
Blogger Steve Maxwell offers tips and a video explaining how to choose and use a router table.
Making wooden replacement handles for tools is easier than you think.
Steuart Laboratories manufactures and markets several dozen herb-based healing and pain products for both the human and livestock markets.
Reuse burnt-out lightbulbs to make this adorable, unique DIY holiday wreath.
This stone fascia is a practical solution for wildfire prevention. It's attractive and uses local natural resources.
I can deal with a lot of things- floods, frosts, Japanese beetles, but one thing I can't stand is fire ants. Living in the north for a good portion of my life, I was close to unaware of their existence until I moved to the south. Then, everywhere I looked in my yard I saw the same thing; enormous mounds of orange clay filled with irritating stinging ants.
Like many things in nature, the catalpa tree and worm have a special one-on-one relationship.
Check out this interesting video showing the construction of the Builders without Borders Straw Bale Eco-House.
The quake that struck near Prague, Oklahoma on November 5, 2011, was the biggest ever recorded in the state. Now geologists are warning Oklahomans that quakes may become a regular phenomenon in the state. And the problem is apparently connected to natural-gas operations.
Eric, Michael and Loren decided to build a winter shelter from natural and re-used materials two winters ago, their first ever natural building experiment. This is an account of that experience that changed their lives in mysterious and unforeseen ways (for the better!).
Summer fun gives way to windy, cold weather and before you know it, you've got winter dry skin – chapped, red and itchy hands. Use this easy-to-make DIY lotion; it’s a remarkable remedy for dry, cracked hands.
"Earthen Floors" by Sukita Reay Crimmel and James Thomson provides essential information for creating beautiful floors using natural techniques.
A first-time momma responds with gratefulness when her desires for a natural, vaginal birth take another direction.
These all-natural approaches can ease TMJ symptoms and give you relief.
Get plenty of these vitamins to fight fatigue and feel your best.
I do not know that there is a natural birth movement. I do not know what a doula is. I do not know about pre-natal yoga. The only thing I do know at this point is that there is no way in hell that anyone is sticking a huge needle into my spine and no one is going to be cutting anything around me unless it is an umbilical cord.
This post will take a look at how we transplant vegetable seedlings in our certified organic greenhouses, especially tomatoes, peppers and eggplants.
Learning how to graft tomatoes yourself not only saves money but gives you unlimited options for what varieties you choose to graft. With a little practice, you can become skilled at this worthwhile technique.
What is the best way to learn cordwood construction? Are there workshops or classes offered?
The fundamental building blocks, descriptions, diagrams and pictures of best practices cordwood buildings.
Learn how to build using the cordwood construction technique. Author Richard Flatau recommends taking a workshop or building a practice building.
A basic recipe for making compost tea.
The cordwood chapel at Kinstone Academy was built over three years and has many natural motifs in the walls.
The best time for selling your cordwood home. Tips, websites, suggestions, and what to do BEFORE you build.
Clean with vodka for a spic-and-span house and less of a headache in the morning! You can use the alcohol to freshen your laundry, remove mold and mildew, and even repel bugs. Vodka kills bacteria and dries clear and odor-free, making it an ideal addition to your cleaning cupboard.
Backcasting into the future: a powerful tool for developing creative pathways towards a sustainable world and a bright, positive future for Planet Earth!
Ed and Bruce share their experiences with homesteading and self-sufficiency in a rural setting. This segment is on using natural resources around the homestead.
A step-by-step guide, and benefits to growing sprouted grain fodder for your livestock as a natural alternative to commercial feed or as a pasture supplement.
Making tallow container candles out of bison fat.
How to make tallow candles from bison suet.
Follow this advice for avoiding and treating bee stings.
There's more reason than ever to be prepared for natural disasters, no matter where you live!
Goats are a great way to get rid of weed problems while also reducing the use of chemicals and fossil fuels.
Keep your skin protected from the sun as well as from toxic chemicals that can potentially cause severe health risks. These reviews of all-natural sunscreens explain which ingredients to avoid when choosing a sunscreen.
Learn how to build a straw bale home by downloading this free guide.
Some of the most amazing natural phenomena to see this autumn. Try to check them out in person if you can!
Natural gas sounds green. After all, it has "natural" in the title. But how green is natural gas, really?
If you want whiter teeth but don't want to buy chemical-heavy products at the store, these food and DIY home remedies will help you get whiter teeth, without the cost and chemicals.
Each year, the success rate for hens hatching and raising chicks at Rancho Cappuccino contines to increase, and it seems there's more than luck at play. Read about watching natural selection in action on the farm.
July is UV Safety Month. Stay safe in the sun with these tips.
Making good decisions on how we use our land. Keeping it natural.
I wanted a DIY natural cleaner for stainless steel appliances, because I don't use all those terrible chemical-filled products that I was tricked into buying 10 years ago. How do I clean without the name brand products that promise to make life easy and clean your stainless steel products? Let me tell you my secret.
This low-cost, easy-to-assemble fire pit from Instructables is made with concrete tree rings and rocks. Just add a grill and you've got the perfect backyard hangout, all for around $50.
Crafting laundry detergent saves time, money and lightens your environmental footprint. Plus it’s simple!
These DIY garden lights reuse plastic bottles and provide soft, natural lighting for evenings spent outdoors.
How to make a homemade cheese press in order to make a massive cheese.
You can build your own industrial-chic reclaimed-wood table with only a few hand tools, spending about $120 on copper pipe.
Readers vote on whether they think making beer, mustard or pickles sounds like the most fun, plus which seems easiest.
Make your own rotisserie spit that is solar powered.
Build a simple backyard barbecue pit with no more than a shovel and a good cover panel for your next barbecue party.
Bust the myths surrounding poison ivy and decide which DIY remedies are right for you.
Cam has found another way to save money - his wife cuts his hair now! He also describes how even though he isn't artistic he creates and enjoys the masterpieces from his garden.
Why spend hundreds of dollars on a commercial recumbent bicycle when you can make your own out of parts of recycled bikes?
Finding the perfect desk with just the right amount of work space can be a hassle and a financial drain. Build your own desk with this do-it-yourself tutorial, and you’ll have room for your computer, notebooks, phone, printer and any other work-time necessities, and you’ll save some serious cash in the process.
How-to online videos are a valuable resource for any do-it-yourselfer. But there are a lot of videos out there, so we’ve picked noteworthy ones and provided a few links to help you find more in the future. From building a workbench to changing your car’s oil, these engaging and instructive videos will inspire you to start a fun, new DIY project.
Borrowing from a Native American tradition, utilize porcupine quills to make beautiful beads.
Recycling building materials from other sources is a great way to cut the cost and reduce the environmental impact of your DIY projects. We want to know where readers go to find reclaimed or used building materials, and how they use these materials in home projects.
Robert Maxwell shares tips on maintaining motivation.
Learn how to make a pinwheel for a fun, outdoors toy.
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, share his make do tool tips with fellow DIY homeowners.
Hand crafted from recycled materials, each item one of a kind.
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, explains just how easy it is to install laminate flooring yourself.
An introduction to Paula Baker-Laporte's future readers : about Paula, multiple chemical sensitivities, Building Biology and the role of green building in health.
Ginseng benefits reach far and wide—both Asian and American ginseng help boost energy and vitality, improve concentration, prevent the flu, plus so much more.
Chinese worker Chen Shun Qun says she is paid and treated fairly at the factory that makes Natural Home bamboo kitchen tools.
Natural Home chose bamboo for its kitchenware line because it's both sustainable and beautiful.
Some of the nastiest chemicals we bring into our homes are used to clean ovens and drains--and they're not necessary. Learn how to clean your entire kitchen using vinegar, baking soda and a little salt and lemon juice. You'll love the results!
My grandmother taught me everything I need to know about keeping my house clean--without chemicals.
Clear your home's air naturally for better health and well being.
When a group of graduation students began designing a home on the Navajo reservation in southeast Utah, they knew keeping it cool in the desert would be an issue. Their innovative solution--a Windcatcher--is the first of its kind in the area.
What can you do with all those useless newspapers, paper bags and Yellow Pages books? Tear them into scraps and use them to decoupage walls and other surfaces. It's easy, cheap--and surprisingly elegant.
Turn empty oatmeal and salt containers into pretty storage canisters--in a snap.
Bring some spring into your life. Sprinkle some wheat grass seeds in an old apothecary jar and watch them grow.
So maybe you can't afford the pricey furniture and decor on display at the design shows in Milan and Vegas. Just take a look at these ideas and start riffing.
Two years ago, the Natural Home & Garden staff had the honor of decorating President Obama's guest house with sustainable and handmade holiday decor. Try some of these "president-approved" projects yourself!
Moms, protect your baby’s health with this safe, homemade sunscreen.
Need gift ideas? Check out these 10 natural beauty products, including lip balm, face wash, body wash, nail polish and more.
Many wood finishes contain toxic solvents or heavy-metal drying agents. Learn which nontoxic wood finishes are best to use on decks, fences and unfinished, wood-sided homes.
Step-by-step building instructions for a passive solar greenhouse.
Margarita Sikorskaia's bright and bold paintings tell the intimate story of parenthood through the lense of passion and love.
Processed foods contain a variety of chemical preservatives that have been linked to serious medical conditions. Here’s what to look for and how to avoid food preservatives.
This is the story of how I learned to make yucca rope.
This May 2014, Be the Change Project is attempting to build a cob house in one day with 50 people.
A recipe for a grease patty that doesn't use hydrogenated oils.
Ilene White Freedman’s goat is in labor, reminding Ilene of her own natural childbirth experiences.
While you may already look for eco-friendly organic wine when you select a bottle, you're probably not aware of the environmental implications of opting for a wine closed with natural cork in lieu of a less sustainable synthetic stopper.
Fleas and ticks can bring severe itching, allergic reactions, discomfort, and even serious diseases (such as lyme disease) to your pets, so it’s important to protect your pets from them. However, studies have found that many common flea and tick control/treatment products aren’t just toxic to those bugs; they can actually poison your pets, as well. Find out which ingredients and products to avoid, and some safer alternatives to use.
Solving the mystery of finding broken shards of china and pottery in an old garden. Discovering the history of the land and its first settlers.
This blog post tells you how to set up a drip irrigation system in a raised bed garden.
This blog post takes a look at some of the methods we have developed over the last 25 years growing vegetable seedlings in our certified organic greenhouses. This time we take a look at the conditions required for healthy seedling growth.
This blog post shares some of the simple techniques learned through many years of experience by someone who grows vegetable seedlings for a living.
With 1/3 of the population of the US under a tornado watch today, these tornado facts, myths, and survival tips could save a lot of lives!
Houses take a lifetime to pay off these days, and even a prosaic shed, barn or coop requires a heavy investment of money, time, skilled labour and imported materials. For thousands of years, though, people around the world used an ancient technique to build homes and other structures quickly, using nothing but local material and simple, easily learned skills.
Though he didn’t know exactly how, Cadmon Whitty decided to substantially retrofit his older home with straw bales, making it more energy-efficient, more valuable, and more aesthetically attractive in the process — all on a shoestring budget.
Glimpse a view into the world of cordwood construction. This old-fashioned, natural building technique can inspire you to build an energy-efficient, mortgage-free house of your own.
A video documenting the "One Day Cob House" build in Reno, Nevada.
Moving is stressful, but it's not an excuse to forget your carbon footprint. Here are some ways to make your move as eco-friendly as possible.
Straw bale and timber frames are highly compatible, beautiful, and the efficiency and longevity of using these natural building techniques is superior in a cold climate setting.
Cadmon Whitty decided to substantially retrofit his older home with straw bales, beginning with rewiring a home, making it more energy-efficient, more valuable, and more aesthetically attractive in the process — all on a shoestring budget.
60 people raised a cob house in one day in Reno, Nevada, with the Be the Change Project and House Alive.
This blog takes a look at the steps taken to propagate lavender by taking cuttings.
Natural products research firm Compass Naturals predicts shoppers will get savvy; rebel against chemicals, over-packaging, GMOs and animal cruelty; and grow more of their own food.
A ladybug reminds us to pause, take a look around, and appreciate our surroundings.
A recycled cork yoga mat prototype gets a rigorous workout as one editor puts it through the ropes in her quest for more eco-friendly Zen.
Alka-Seltzer can give your cleaning routine a little extra fizz. Try it for unclogging drains and cleaning toilets.
Tips on how to control soil erosion and help protect one of Earth's most important natural resources.
emerginC, a leading professional skincare collection, has just launched a natural yet serious results-oriented collection aptly named Scientific Organics.
Perfect for an evening of socializing out on the deck or an intimate meal at a table for two, GoodLight candles keep the mood bright and the air clean and are now available both online and in stores nationwide.
Crunchy goodness in a brown paper bag.
U.S. energy consumers will rely more on natural gas and renewables and less on imports in 2011. Coal remains dominant.
Learn three simple tips for making the most of small gardening spaces, including hanging plants and advice for selecting seed varieties.
The very first thing I did after closing on my new house was meet with an expert in natural methods for eliminating brown recluse spiders.
Many beauty products contain harmful chemicals, but figuring out which are the worst can be difficult. Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence clues you in to the top five chemical ingredients to avoid when buying summer skin care products, and helps you learn about a few natural alternatives.
The Mayo Clinic Book of Home Remedies offers scientific backing to herbal and natural medicine.
Are you ready for the kinds of severe weather that could impact the area where you live? National Severe Weather Preparedness Week takes place from Mar. 3-9, 2013. This is a great time for you and your family to “Be a Force of Nature” by learning the importance of planning for severe weather events and practicing how and where to take shelter before severe weather strikes.
In this video, learn how the production and consumption of stuff affects the environment and community health.
GloryBee Foods announces today that the company adds Aunt Patty's Organic Creamed Coconut to its selection of natural foods.
According to the USDA, consumers can feel secure in the accuracy of the biobased claim and can make better informed purchasing decisions.
Michelle Corbett's grandmother and great-grandmother taught her to use a natural compost consisting of eggshells and coffee grounds.
Building Biology advises us to look for a successful history of use when choosing building materials but in our ever changing product-based building environment we seldom have the luxury of evaluating track record. This becomes quickly apparent when vetting new products for client’s homes. I recently called a major manufacturer to find out what was in a new product developed to prevent mold growth on framing lumber.
A few words describing how I came to Dancing for Birth and why I believe every woman should dance through her birth.
The fire moon shows up every year when the forest fires start up. Maggie Bonham has some recommendations for preparing to evacuate with animals.
Sipping on medicinal herbal tea is one of the best steps you can take to shorten the duration of illness when the symptoms of a cold, sore throat, or other upper respiratory infection begin.
You may not hear about Candida overgrowth as much anymore, but there’s more evidence than ever that this syndrome is real and is often associated with other gut problems that cause a wide variety of symptoms throughout the body.
Part two discusses soil testing and costs associated with building an underground/earth sheltered home. You will see pictures of earth shelter plans and soil testing which you will find nowhere else on the Internet!
This article takes an insider’s look at how the seed business works, and what you can do to get the best-quality seeds.
"An Unlikely Vineyard" by Deirdre Heekin tells her story of growing wine in the unlikely hills of Vermont and her quest to express the essence of place in every bottle. It is about the evolution of her farm from overgrown fields to a fertile, productive, and beautiful landscape that melds with its natural environment. A gentle narrative with lush photography, this book will appeal to anyone who loves food, farms, and living well.
At first glance George Siemon and Doc Hatfield don’t appear to have a whole lot in common. But George and Doc and a bunch of conspirators are revolutionizing agriculture: they are putting consumers back in touch with the people who grow their food.
Faith Starr of Living Green With Faith will present workshops on weeds and wild plants at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Check out this natural All-Purpose Cleaner recipe.
Kick toxic chemicals to the curb and make your own natural lotion using just a few ingredients. Making homemade lotion is an easy, fun and creative process.
Erin Harwood and Eloyce O'Connor of the Garden Delights CSA and Herb Farm will present a workshop on natural remedies at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Dr. Jaclyn Chasse, naturopathic physician, will present workshops on natural menopause options, building a natural first aid kit and detoxing at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25 in Seven Springs, PA.
Jeremy Galvan of Maryland Families for Safe Birth will present a workshop on midwives and home births at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania.
Erin McIntosh of Mountain Rose Herbs and Victoria Miller of Canyon Creek Farms will present workshops on calming herbs and how to keep turkeys at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Tips on how to prepare yourself for a natural disaster during September's National Preparedness Month!
K.C. Compton takes a glance at more than two dozen trends that are shaping our future, which are documented in the Worldwatch Institute’s latest publication, "Vital Signs, Volume 21."
Quirky behaviors involving shaving, moisturizing, socks and water conservation!
My brief discription of sustainable beekeeping
The full team from thePOOSH.org attended Over the Moon Festival last autumn in the UK and built a beautiful bender as a temporary shelter area and stall.
The bleeding edge of technology is where the true pioneers of their respective industry reside. Adam D. Bearup has had his own impact in the green building field on several fronts, above and below ground.
Build an inexpensive bicycle trailer out of upcycled walkers and other easy-to-find materials.
Learn how to assemble a humane animal trap out of recycled material. It’s easy and effective!
This funky DIY bicycle helmet from Adafruit features colorful LED light strips to increase riders' visibility at night.
Gather a few pallets and get geared up to make your very own spacious rabbit hutch with just a few supplies for under $25 dollars!
Feels like I'm finally getting the ball rolling on my DIY Plug-In Hybrid Truck Project. I got a chance to visit Hot Rod Jim, talk about drive shafts, and even got the bed off the truck!
Steve Maxwell spotlights the three myths that prevent people from realizing the full value of the self reliant lifestyle, and how to dispel them
Make your barn doors glide with skateboard wheels and other easy to find materials in this DIY project to create sliding barn doors.
You can make a simple bench for the garden or patio by recycling an old headboard.
Learn how to make your own bushcraft knife using only simple tools and materials, including an old file.
Skylight scoops are the latest design in skylights which help save more energy and enhance a building’s environment.
This easy-to-make mosquito-net tent will keep flying critters from bugging you throughout the night.
You can make these outdoor chairs for less than $80 by recycling a whiskey barrel and using a few other supplies from your workshop.
This acorn-shaped wool garland is easy to make and perfect for fall decor.
Learn how to build a simple, dual-burner rocket stove using recycled materials from your homestead, garden or workshop.
Take a seat on this comfy sofa you made yourself using recycled car seats.
You can stretch your budget for wedding flowers by growing some of your own. Learn how to select, schedule, and plant flowers — then make them into wedding bouquets, boutonnieres, and centerpieces.
Here’s what to look for when purchasing a portable table saw for DIY building projects around your homestead.
Don't have the budget for a hot tub? Check out how these homeowners saves money and space by planting vintage clawfoot tubs in their gardens.
See the power of gasification before we hit the road.
Personal users can now buy welding and cutting products and accessories online from the comfort of their home.
Announcing our new webcam that will be showing the latest flock of new born chicks in all their cute and feathery glory.
Need to get your kids out of the house? Learn how to build your own playground and give them a convenient place for outdoor playtime.
How to quickly and easily make a soothing herbal tea blend for children, plus bags and boxes to hold it.
Wrap drinking glasses in handmade paper for pretty, easy-to-make vases and votive holders.
One of the easiest ways to make your own newspaper pots.
Rechargeable tool packages use the same battery to power multiple tools: saws, drills, drivers and flashlights. What are the benefits of these systems?
Easy-sew step-by-step instructions (with photos) to repurpose feed bags into handy totes.
Thinking about bees? Check out this DIY top bar hive!
Leasing solar panels may be a way for you to have a solar electric system on your home. See what our expert has to say on leasing solar panels, from an operating lease to a capital lease. Plus, learn about the federal tax incentives that come with solar electric systems.
User of our CU photo-sharing website submits photo documents the building process on their new biomass and solar dome home.
Don't forget to submit your photos to our CU photo-sharing website. Your favorite moments could become famous on our homepage!
Doug and Jennie Ostgaard designed and built a photovoltaic system for their home, a project they was completed in six months. DIY photovoltaic solar has many benefits, and they outline a few of them here.
With photovoltaic (PV) panel technology you can tap into the amazing world of free totally renewable energy from the sun. You generally cannot find a better more reliable source of power on the planet that solar. In our book you will find that a DIY on grid/off grid system is very affordable and a wise choice for almost everyone.
Cam is trying to extend his growing season with DIY greenhouse structures.
How to make your own homemade deodorant that really works!
The last week of the month has been a busy one with are preparations for the ending of winter and the start of a new growing season. We've got some details on a new cover crop and why we choose and simple composting toilet system compared to others.
Talking about the excitement of Anna's new book cover that we got to preview from the publisher this past week and the anxiety of our new born chicks as they go out into the big world. Also have some details on how to make your own cleft graft.
Our experiments with an Alaskan small log mill attached to our chainsaw had variable results making planks from downed trees.
Robert Maxwell explains how to build your own limestone foundation for almost no money.
Talking about how to make a DIY electric fence wire holder and how we got a tailgate transplant for around 150 dollars and some signs of spring.
We now have something to walk on other than dirt!
At last, we construct the foundation.
Follow these easy instructions explaining how to make a fruit picker, and you'll never be tormented by out-of-reach fruit again.
What's it take to build your own SOLAR-POWERED Electric Car? How about starting small with some hardware store parts and an old child's ride-on toy? Read how a tinkerer Dad builds a Solar-Powered Power Wheels with just basic tools and skills.
So here's an idea - why not take existing technology and build a DIY diesel electric pickup truck? Is it even possible? I think it is, but I'll need your help!
To me, the most important features of a sustainable building are not its technological wonders but its simple design features: common-sense strategies that should be incorporated whether the building becomes LEED certified, Energy Star certified, or is just trying to be environmentally friendly.
Millions of people suffer from mental illness and depend on psychiatric drugs to get them through the day. Conventional treatment may block the symptoms but do nothing to address the underlying cause. There are 5 common physical causes of mental illness.
One of the newest apps for green car owners is Cleaner and Greener Fuels, which locates refueling stations for alternative fuel vehicles.
One small brown bat can eat several thousand insects each night. Install a bat house and invite them to feast in your yard.
Discover some of the properties of essential oils, along with some tips for cleaning with them.
The sweet smell and healing properties of bay, eucalyptus and ginger will make your sweetheart's Valentine's Day massage memorable.
Gina Luker of The Shabby Chic Cottage turns a flea market suitcase and baskets into a wonderful bedside table that doubles as valuable storage.
Bring back bottle-cutting! This contemporary candelabra, which gives new life to beautiful blue mineral water bottles, will make you rethink that old '70s craft.
Low-fired brick is a very sustainable building material with low embodied energy. They are made with locally procured clay and fired with rice hulls, a by-product of growing rice. Brickyards are located near urban areas to minimize transport costs.
A TED talk by Christy Hemenway of Gold Star Honeybees: Making the Connection: Honeybees, Food, and You.
Matt and Kelly Grocoff keep cool in Michigan by taking advantage of their 110-year-old home's natural ventilation strategies. It's as easy as opening a couple of strategically placed windows.
A Christmas Wish for all, inspired by the magic of the honey bee.
With no building experiment and only the information they found online as their guide, Kyle and Jeannie built a sweet little home on wheels. In this video, they share what they learned in the process and invite you inside.
Solar-powered jar lights are pretty but too pricey. You can easily make your own using easy-to-find items from the hardware store.
Get an introduction to Building Biology, the science and philosophy of healthy and ecological building that originated in Germany 60 years ago.
Learn how to create a yoga studio that enhances your practice and your health.
What do farm-raised salmon, your typical DEET bug spray, and non-filtered drinking water all have in common? These are frequently encountered sources of toxins which in excess could be threatening your health, but following a detox cleanse will keep you protected and restore energy!
Using an old-world technique, Russians are growing their own organic crops -- and it's working.
The answer to your burning question, “Why am I tired all the time?” may simply be this: your body’s ability to manage stress effectively by means of the adrenal glands has been compromised. Chronic or excessive stress disrupts the normal functioning of the body’s stress response system. Fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of this disruption.
Detoxification is a powerful tool for treating fatigue and helping your body handle toxins—everything from car exhaust to junk food. Give your body a natural energy and health boost using this simple liver detox program.
It's surprisingly easy to figure out how many carbon dioxide emissions come from producing the electricity for your home, or burning a full tank of gas. Check out this carbon calculator, or find out how to do a quick ballpark estimate.
Bee stings are so painful you feel like a burning torch has touched your skin! To get fast relief, here are 8 natural bee sting treatment options you can use at home.
Tiny plastic beads in cosmetics are found in the Great Lakes, putting fish and human health at risk.
Grass fed beef benefits for health are remarkable indeed; but are they fabulous enough to justify the extra cost? And how do you know you are buying the real thing?
Infants and children are susceptible to the dangers of aspartame side effects.
This time of year, many are intent on healthier eating, but find it hard to find healthy foods that actually taste good. Use these 3 delicious healthy lunch recipes for a mealtime you can truly enjoy!
Some examples of passive solar design applied to homes in the southeast, where cooling, as well as heating, is a concern.
Natural Home bamboo kitchen tools are made without formaldehyde or other harmful additives, through a process that eliminates waste.
Keep your family healthy by paying close attention to your home's 10 germiest places.
Recently, I had an epiphany in a building supply center. Even though I’ve been in the building trades for over 35 years and made countless trips to purchase building supplies, this trip was different.
In the third in a series on potential toxins and chemicals to avoid during pregnancy, Natural Home & Garden Editor Jessica Kellner discusses the dangers associated with use of retinol in skin care products.
The L41 is a mass-produced, superefficient home designed to provide affordable shelter for everyone.
Homestead skills of yogurt-making and bread-baking increase your independence from grocery store aisles and international food conglomerates.
With all the recent panic about radiation contamination, our loyal BõKU customers felt safer, and more protected, with BõKU's nutrient dense support.
Simran Sethi balances her love of nature with her fear of mice in her home.
In Arizona, an intrepid desert gardener harvests rainwater to grow his own food. A Missouri garden writer feeds his soil to feed himself. In Texas, a garden wall encourages community. These are a few of my favorite gardens.
According to the Natural Products Association, the NPA Natural Standard is based on natural ingredients, safety, responsibility and sustainability.
Ceiling fans help cool people naturally, and use a lot less energy than air conditioners. Use them to save on energy.
Every good home needs a porch. From fireside chats to sleeping--and even hanging laundry--porches can accommodate every aspect of our lives. Here are five inspiring examples to put a fire under your porch-sitting fantasies.
The Joy of Green Cleaning is a fantastic resource with recipes to clean everything from grout to sheepskins.
Jessica expounds on the concept of cures in your cupboard with a few natural remedies for anxiety, general wellness, headache and menstruation/menopause.
The American College of Healthcare Sciences and Apothecary Shoppe have been re-certified as Green America Gold-Certified businesses.
Keeping feeder pigs over the summer is a good way to use garden leftovers and produce great tasting home-grown pork!
Use naturally cool nighttime air to provide summer comfort. It's a lot easier than you think and it can save you a fortune on cooling costs.
Share your thoughts about natural building methods including straw bale building, cordwood construction, earth building and more.
Alma Hecht's renovated century-old cottage is artistic and beautiful--and it inspires her to create wonderful watercolor paintings. Her home is both an outlet and a source for her creativity.
I love my two-story log cabin, which combines recycled and an array of green building materials.
There is an ideal relative humidity range for our health and that is somewhere between 35% and 55%. In modern life we have introduced many new sources of moisture into our homes. Daily showers, laundry, cooking and dishwashing tend to create concentrated bursts of humidity. Because conventional construction can tolerate very little increase in humidity without condensation/mold problems moisture from these sources must be mechanically sucked out of the home.
There are multiple philosophies that describe what characterizes a green home, but all have low energy loads in common.
We're using earthbags and straw bales to construct an efficient, cost-effective, and roomy earthbag root cellar.
It's not always easy to use natural remedies on your chickens. Here's a trick to keep up your sleeve that will have them begging for their medicine.
This variation on the (endlessly adaptable) traditional Mongolian yurt design was inspired by the work of master yurt builder, educator, and homesteader Bill Coperthwaite (who was also a neighbor and friend of the Nearings). This low-cost yurt design combines basketry, wattle and daub, and basic lashing (similar to skin-on-frame boats). Not much more than a glorified tent, this DIY yurt made from sticks, string and mud makes a very comfortable, durable and beautiful tiny house, studio, or meditation space.
Ann Adams and Liz Brensinger of Green Heron Tools will present a workshop on the principles of good body mechanics at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Sue J. Morris of Sue's Salves will present two workshops on gardening and creating salves at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Soapmaker Anne-Marie Faiola will present a workshop on soapmaking and Dr. Andrew Iverson will presenet a workshop on natural health at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Many people don’t know that most HVAC systems don’t produce more or less heating or cooling based on the room temperature – they simply blow air for longer.
One of my earliest vivid childhood memories is sitting on my father’s lap as a young girl reading the magazine together in the 1980s and all throughout my childhood. He would read aloud while I studied the pictures of passive solar building, vegetable gardening, sheep shearing, building your own sugar shack and the beautiful array of topics which he read to me frequently. Those images, along with the camping trips in the mountains, the whitewater and canoeing excursions, and our family trip to Alaska, have been etched in the catacombs of my childhood memories and have sculpted the person I have grown to become.
A brief story of how a creek was damaged and how it was reported to the authorities properly.
When you get home, go to your hot water heater, remove the cover and turn it down to 120 degrees (sometimes labeled “hot” as opposed to “very hot”).
Simran Sethi writes about the importance of eco-friendly mattresses, bed frames, and bedding.
Simran Sethi comes to terms with getting rid of the mouse in her home.
Looking for a great home metalworking project? Follow these DIY patio furniture instructions to build scrap-metal furniture for your patio.
It was becoming pretty obvious the crowding and lack of light were real limitations to my mini garden. Then, the idea of a trough on the windowsill came to mind, combining a way to water all the plants uniformly and efficiently all at once. Great, now how to make this trough? Wood? Sheet metal? The choices all seemed expensive, clumsy, prone to leaking...then the light bulb went on in my head: gutters!
With a few key supplies, you can revive worn wood flooring without heavy-duty sanding.
Making mosaics out of salvaged, broken tiles is a great project for free-form do-it-yourselfers. It's easy, fun and results in a brilliant surface--often for pennies. Check out this video and give it a try.
Give your hangers a little pizzazz--and protect your clothing--with this simple project that makes use of worn-out shirts.
Cam has had to learn lots of new skills living in his off-grid home!
People often dismiss gardening as an expensive hobby that they can’t afford. While that can be true, it doesn’t have to be. There are way to make gardening cheap.
It might be the middle of the summer, but you should start thinking about getting your fall garden ready. If you don’t have much space, to plant everything outdoors, then you can certainly start your seeds indoors.
When you are apartment gardening in a small space, you are forced to be creative due to your space constrictions. Most traditional pots and containers might not work, so you become reliant on reusing objects to better fit your space.
Reed diffusers are a great way to fill your home with the fresh, healing scents of essential oils--but they're pricey. You can save a bundle by making your own using repurposed bottles and plant stalks.
For an investment of less than $10,000 and about a week of labor, you could have a custom workshop, barn, garden shed or office.
Advancing their commitment to helping homeowners protect their lawns and gardens from damage caused by moles, Sweeney's, a leader in DIY pest control products, introduces the Deadset MoleTrap.
Two students have created an inspirational blog that features one upcycling project--something made from discarded materials--each day. They've committed to keeping it going for 30 days, but with your help it could go forever.
Save money and keep harsh chemicals out of your kitchen by making your own dishwasher detergent. It takes just seconds to make a powdered or liquid version.
Simple to make, this stone bath mat is a treat for your feet.
Claire finds a recipe for hard lotion and makes molded lotion bars to give as Christmas presents.
Have you ever considered using lard to make soap? It is easy to locate, inexpensive, and has a long history as a soap-making staple. This recipe adds a few extras to improve the conditioning qualities of traditional lard soap.
Put those big pieces of cardboard to work by turning them into furniture. This entertaining tutorial shows you how.
This DIY washing powder is simple to make, costs just pennies and smells heavenly.
Old mirrors are a dime a dozen at flea markets--but what can you do with them? Group several of different shapes together for a pretty, unique display.
Upcycle abandoned shopping carts into funky shopping cart furniture that is both fun and functional. This DIY shopping cart project takes some elbow grease, but is well worth the results.
Use old jars to make these cute, inexpensive candle lanterns--for a fraction of what you'd pay if you bought them at the store.
Growing your own food doesn't have to be an expensive activity. There are plenty of ways to cut back the costs and be earth-friendly as well. You can do this by giving a second life to items that have outgrown their initial purpose.
Rain chains are a smart, good-looking way to collect rainwater from your roof--but they can be pricey. You can make your own for next to nothing. Give your house a little bling.
Trying to sum up a few of the lesson learned while figuring out the best way to incubate and hatch cute chicks.
Learn how to waterproof fabric with these simple instructions for making tin cloth.
Invite the birds into your yard with this simple bird feeder made from a toilet paper roll.
Finally getting the barn roof repair project started was a big deal for us as well as a few other things that are worth checking out if you are interested in modern homesteading.
Talking about the recent past week where we got several items crossed off the Spring to-do list and managed to have some fun while doing it complete with pictures to illustrate the good times.
A brief announcement of the new Permaculture chicken ebook series that starts with chicken egg incubation.
This very simple indirect stepping stone technique allows you to make multiple stepping stones that will be beautiful and long lasting. It is good for individual stones and for large group projects involving all ages.
Here are three easy Easter basket items for you to make. Children can act as helpers, or you can surprise them. Make rainbow crayons, mini soaps and bath bombs.
Part I of a two-part tutorial on how to make soap for the absolute beginner. Readers will assemble materials and prepare the mold this week in anticipation of combining the ingredients to make a batch of cold-process soap.
Part II of a tutorial on how to make cold-process soap. The directions are intended for the absolute beginner and use easy-to-locate materials.
You can use items you find in your pantry like powdered drink mix, Jell-O and food coloring to make a beautiful dyed skein of yarn.
Make a cute, no-sew May Day basket using felt. Embellish it with buttons, beads and trim and it is ready to be delivered. Fill it with flowers and candy and you can hang it on a neighbor's doorknob like people did a century ago.
Celebrate all things beachy by making sand candles! Using paraffin, crayons and sand you can make a beautiful sand candle to commemorate a trip to the shore.
Use Epsom salt, lemon, aloe vera and other simple ingredients to clean up your kids when they have stubborn, sticky summer grime.
Use herbs from your garden,vegetable oil and beeswax to make a solid perfume.
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, guides an inquiring homeowner on how to find the right circular saw.
Ordering bees in January doesn't seem to make sense, until you understand that April is the cruelest month. Plus, if you order bees in January, and then you don't need them - that's just a reason to celebrate! Order early!
Forced to extremes by illness, these homeowners built sacred, beautiful homes completely free of toxic chemicals, petrochemical fumes and other poisons. For all three, better housing has meant better health.
By the 4th of July, there's a palpable shift in the feel of the beekeeping season. New beekeepers wish for more guidance, and may even be wondering why they started this project! Here's a little reassurance that you are not alone in your endeavor.
We have developed two customized search engines that make it easier to locate companies that offer specific varieties of seeds and plants, as well as organic garden products and tools.
During National Ground Water Awareness Week next week, let's bring attention to what natural gas drilling is doing to our ground water supplies.
Does the huge task of cleaning windows leave you feeling overwhelmed? Follow these six simple steps--using inexpensive materials you already have around the house--to get your windows sparkling and streak-free.
Highlights from the "Make Your Own Green Cleaners--for Pennies" workshop at the Mother Earth News Fair: How to use vinegar and baking soda to clean just about everything.
Use spirulina or wheat grass instead of iffy chemical dyes to turn your beer green this St. Patrick's Day.
According to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 100 percent of the electric generating capacity added in January was renewable.
Celebrate Meatless Monday with this sweet, tangy spring risotto.
As organic industry leaders urge consumers to take action against GMOs--the biggest threat the industry faces this year--soapmaker David Bronner gives $25,000 to seed an anti-GMO march on Capitol Hill.
Sauteed spring greens and mushrooms dress up polenta in this nutritious, satisfying main dish.
As a nursery renovation begins, Jessica, editor of Natural Home and Garden, is just beginning an investigation into remodeling options for an eco-friendly nursery.
It helps us feel better to know "why" things happen, but we don't always get to know that answer...
Follow these tips to banish clutter and increase your efficiency, from your home office to your garage.
How to go from buying everything at Wally World to growing organic vegetables, raising livestock, building an efficient home, and a Do-It-Yourself, self-sufficient lifestyle.
While many indications point to house size shrinking in America, National Public Radio reports that the McMansion is far from dead.
Yellow jackets can pose a threat to honeybees. If yellow jackets have built a nest in your yard, here's a recipe for a natural, non-toxic solution that will get rid of them. Please share your own recommendations too!
Many years ago, years before I moved to the country, I was what would be considered "a prepper." I saw disaster every time I turned on the TV, or read the news on the internet, or visited forums that talked about stockpiling beans and bullets. I panicked, thinking I could never have enough control for the sake of my family, never be "prepped" enough.
This blog post started life as an article in The Natural Farmer,published by the Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA). It could be said to herald the birth of that entity we have come to call The Cynical Optimist.
A quick essay regarding the "size" question of a top bar hive, from the bee's point of view - where it's all about the "volume"!
Here is yet another possible building project presented to you which requires no formal training, very little money, and techniques/methods that anyone can use. This blog intends to inspire you to take on a natural building project like this one. Don´t have fear if this is your first time working with these techniques and materials — it often for us also! Swattlesfield Campground is frequented by many kinds of people for various reasons. The owner, Jonathan, wanted to introduce some activity which would draw people together. We had the perfect idea: pizza! Food, especially food that requires waiting, has a tendency to attract people. And once humans have a good reason to be in the same place, the rest (socialization) has a tendency to just work.
Green is Universal and Etsy's The Art of Reuse Contest is a gold mine for DIY home project ideas. My favorite pays homage to Audrey Hepburn's ahead-of-its-time sofa made from an old clawfoot bathtub in Breakfast at Tiffany's.
This small project could gain you big time savings. Simply screw a few hooks inside a pretty cigar box, give it a knob and hang it near the door. Never search for lost keys again!
Tearing out wall-to-wall carpet is one of the healthiest things you can do. Dress up the scuffed wood floor underneath using plant-based paint and stencils. You'll never miss the rug.
Protecting the fig tree for the winter felt like putting it to bed for a long sleep. Chopping wood with the Chopper 1 is a thing of joy and beauty and that's no joke. Do it yourself corn bin helped our neighbor keep the racoons out.
Combine two of this hopeful season's symbols--herbs and eggs--in this simple project that celebrates spring.
Announcing our new automatic chicken feeder contest and how some lucky person could win a 10 pack diy kit or 3 premade watering units.
Talking about the back up generator failure along with recent golf cart modifications.
Simplify the Christmas season with these 12 tips for gifts, gift wrapping and decor—as well as steps you can take to make your celebration light on the planet.
Sensor Plug update along with a report on Sunflowers being used as a cover crop and when to properly harvest onions.
Tackling the old wives tale I heard recently down at the hardware store how a penny inserted into the flesh of a tomato plant stalk will help that plant fight off or maybe prevent a blight attack along with data on trying to trap a wild rabbit.
Get your garden ready for spring by making this sturdy, comfortable outdoor bench from recycled-plastic lumber and an old truck tire inner tube.
Porch building tips along with deer pressure notes and golf cart pickup bed instructions.Throw in a 5 foot high chicken wire fence and a rare appearance from a normally camera shy cat named Strider and you've got an idea of what we've been up to.
How to recycle a junked refrigerator into a refrigerator root cellar that works at keeping produce chilled but not frozen during winter months.
You could spend a fortune on flowers from faraway for Mom--but why? This sweet bouquet made from fresh-picked flowers and flea market finds is cuter than anything FTD could deliver. This one's great for weddings and graduation parties, too.
Learn how to make an herbal tincture with The Herb Companion team at the Mother Earth News Fair.
Jim and Holly Smith, founders of Today’s Abundant Living, sent us this great review of a Homesteading Education Month open house and country skills workshop they hosted at their Michigan homestead.
Summing up the past week with a few highlights that help to illustrate how we've been getting along in the ending days of the 2012 winter season.
Air conditioning accounts for as much as 20 percent of the average homeowner's utility bill. These simple tips can help you reduce your mechanical cooling needs, meaning more money for you and better-quality air for the world.
This is a true account of an end of life journey. A beautiful backyard Burial and all the steps that were taken in order to do it. This story is written in two parts, part two will be posted next week.
There's only one rule for wabi-style flowers: strive for a natural look, with seasonal blooms and branches arranged as they are in the field. Don't worry about perfection. Your "arrangement" is a humble admission that we can't improve on nature.
Learn about the advantages of urban farming from those who are leading the way. The benefits include improved food production, increased revenue sources and reduced energy use.
This post offers tips for winterizing a top bar hive - insulating, mouse guards, wrapping, closing entrances, protecting from wind. All things you can do to help get them through!
Simran Sethi discusses what it takes for a home to be truly clean by avoiding harsh chemicals and using natural cleaning products.
Treat your cat to fresh spring herbs when you whip up this healthy homemade kitty food.
Kansas City's 18Broadway project is a superb example of how to capture and store rainwater to grow food in the heart of downtown.
I had heard there are thousands of new earthen houses in Thailand. That really amazed me, so I set out to learn the details about the modern earth building movement in Thailand.
If you want to have some wonderful food, great scenery by the ocean, lots of things to do, I have a place for you: Nova Scotia, Canada.
Despite their widespread use, nanoparticles are not well classified, regulated or even understood. Fortunately, the FDA is signaling a turn toward more accurate classification and rules for their use.
Celebrate and spread the word about Fair Trade food and products with a World Fair Trade Day breakfast on May 14.
As Passive House Institute standards up the ante, USA Today’s “Best Green Homes of 2010” list reflects Americans’ desire for affordability, efficiency and style.
From a home built into a cliff to a home built out from laundry soap boxes, these homes prove how fun and satisfying it is to push the conventional edge. It's your house. Create whatever you want.
This blog post by Christy Hemenway of Gold Star Honeybees describes some techniques for getting bees to draw straight comb in a top bar hive.
A listing of companies that offer green dwellings in the form of modular, prefab, manufactured, compact, or mobile structures. These days, many such options are available that are not only green, but also beautiful, well-made, and often low-cost.
Crushing a truck, harvesting garlic, and fixing a broken flywheel shaft key are just a few of the things that got done over the last week at WaldenEffect.org complete with photos of all the juicy stuff.
A story of life, death and rebirth of a hoop house.
Summing up the last week of activity by hitting on a few key stories that might prove note worthy to a few of the homesteading folks out there complete with photo montage of golf cart jousting and aquaponic trout.
Describing how we are trying to provide a low budget solar panel back up system for under 1000 dollars that will run our laptops and router along with a few other things if the local power grid has any issues.
Building the Cadillac of worm bins, a new barn door, testing the new garlic curing rack, harvesting big potato onions, mulching blueberries, and fabricating a low budget easy to build automatic chicken coop door opener and closer from easy find parts
Forget the time and money that goes into conventional giftwrap. Use these inspirational ideas to wrap lovely gifts with materials otherwise bound for the recycling bin.
If you have access to small diameter trees and wood pallets, and live in an area not restricted by building codes, then this truss design is one good low cost roof option. If you do all the work yourself, these trusses are virtually free.
A little background on how Ric and Vicki moved from Detroit to a Tennessee homestead, and starting to get up to date on what they've done since.
Simran Sethi looks back at her New Year's resolution: to nourish herself.
Breaking down the last week of homesteading we've done over at WaldenEffect.org, and the Top Bar project we started as well as talk on Brix, biodynamics, and Plant Secondary Metabolites. Also have details on an external frame backpack modification.
Scott Davis’ “Solar Projects, Big and Small” video offers inspiration for both solar energy enthusiasts and folks who are just curious. Tips and advice pertaining to solar energy can be found at the Yahoo! group Simply Solar, and you can make your dream project a reality with Gary Reysa’s instructions.
Renovating a heritage log cabin DIY style isn't easy, but with some thought and attention to detail, it can be done - and cheaper than you might think.