Jostaberries are a cross between black currants and gooseberries, combing the best of both fruits to make a tasty berry and an even tastier jam. You can use a water bath canning method to preserve this productive perennial fruit.
Capturing flavor and the nutritional energy of foraged edibles through fermentation—one universal wild edibles sauerkraut recipe with unlimited options.
During my time as a Polyface Farm intern, I never was able to grasp the turkeys as my personal responsibility. Now things are different. Get a glimpse through the eyes of a Polyface Apprentice as he raises Polyface Farm’s pastured turkeys.
Even though our goal is to be completely self-sufficient, one thing that I stress is that you don't have to be completely self-sufficient — just make it your goal to become more self-sufficient than you are right now. This blog will help people become more self-sufficient by leading by example, right or wrong. Here is your official invitation: Please come and join us!
This unique terrarium is a great way to repurpose a French press that has seen better days. Small terrarium plants or mosses are perfect for this tiny terrarium.
A review of a new book that not only gives recipes, but truly teaches the art and fun of cheesemaking.
Garlic scapes, the young flower stems of the garlic plant, have delightful flavor and can be preserved through lactic-acid fermentation in pickles, a convenient flavor paste, or as an ingredient to kraut or kimchi.
Did you know that every caulking tube comes with a cork? Save money by sealing your caulking between projects with this simple hack.
I started my first batch of mead after all these years back in October-November. You all may remember my post about the mead. Well, I had trouble with getting the damn thing to start. Here's what happened.
The least expensive method to grow your apiary is to split existing hives. The walk-away split is the easiest way to do this.
In order to save money, water and energy, one couple is building a new home that will incorporate a simple, gravity-run, household greywater system to divert and collect greywater, as well as rainwater from their roof, for landscape use.
Here's how to ferment wild nettles and turn them into a delicious pesto.
Wild edibles is probably the least energy consuming way to provide food, and especially early in the spring. Here are my favorite plants to look for right now.
Radishes are the red and white stars of my spring pickling classes. If you have more radishes in your garden than you can eat, or if you are just looking to try something new—I say pickle them! Not convinced? Here are five reasons radishes are to be fermented and a recipe for Spring Radish Kimchi to get you started.
Looking for the perfect gift for Mother's Day? I have five ideas for Mother Earth friendly DIY gifts that are sure to please your mom and the planet!
A tiny teacup and an even tinier cactus make an adorable planter that’s easy to assemble. Small children’s toys, pebbles and other little decorative items add a whimsical touch.
My surprise when I thought the mead making wasn't happening.
In order to secure a building permit to construct a new home, many counties require a septic system inspection and approval. Here’s how one couple had a successful “perc” test done at their future home site, along with a quick explanation of what a perc test is.
My garden started out as just a need for feeding my family in the summer months. Over time, it not only needed to feed my family, but needed protection from various critters—including backyard chickens—that inhabit my yard. Learn how to construct raised beds, install shade cloth and build a fence to protect your plants.
These two structures for creating a sustainable homestead are not often associated, but with the right planning they can be integrated into a single multi-use structure that enhances both environments. A greenhouse/chicken coop becomes a year-round food-producing machine, giving you a bounty of fruits, vegetables and protein all in one.
Repurpose an empty wooden clementine crate into a stylish organizer. All you need is some paint, papers to collage with and glue!
Crop rotation is good for your garden, but can be difficult to track. These tools will help you chart which crop families you plant so you can mix it up the following season.
Sometimes a colony of honeybees dies. Colony-collapse disorder is all over the news, but what else might have happened?
Easy to make crackers from scratch.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will offer some tips on preparing for a successful start to the beekeeping season!
Turn a collection of carpet-sample pieces into an eclectic rug for your kitchen or bathroom! This resourceful DIY project can be made with just four materials - some of which may already be in your home.
Ah, the fun begins for building a wood pallet guitar. In this post, we apply the following building steps: planning material, matching the right tools to the wood, shielding cavities, and basic electric guitar electronics assembly and testing.
Now it's time to gather your materials, thoughts, imagination, blend them together and your guitar plans. My plan is drawn out on old reversed-blue prints. I draw my plan in real size in case I have to scale for measurements.
One homesteading couple navigates the final series of meetings with the county planning department and county commission in order to finalize their land survey plat approval.
This framed floral arrangement made with dried flowers and corsages is a lovely and sentimental art piece. It can be made with flowers saved and preserved from many occasions, or from this year’s Valentine’s Day flowers.
How can you create a lush naturally abundant indoor garden year-round? With these 7 simple principles, you can create a greenhouse that is completely self-sufficient, relying only on the sun to provide all of its heating needs. Moreover, solar greenhouses can grow much more than traditional greenhouses - citrus, avocados, guava - using less energy, water and resources.
This post is an overview of my wood pallet guitar. It explains the material sources, how they were obtained and preparation involved with little or no budget, along with the story of my life. Also, you’ll learn the benefits of recycling, repurposing, and reclaiming.
A blog about the joy of a mentoring relationship and the rewards for the mentor and a new-bee.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will explain the basics of a fun winter project - how to make homemade mead!
Easy-to-make bagels using basic pantry ingredients.
A wakeup call for folks who want to keep bees without the work, stings and realities.
Whey is the liquid that remains after milk is curdled. Full of protein and nutrients, whey can be used to soak beans or grains, as a substitute in baking, and for lacto-fermented vegetables, such as sauerkraut.
Capture the flavor of seasonal grapefruit in this sweet and sour liqueur.
Reasons to do a quick hive inspection as soon as possible. Dealing with deadouts and preparing equipment.
It's important to keep indoor cats occupied to help them live long, healthy and happy lives. These homemade toys will do just the trick! The supplies are low cost and/or can be made by re-purposing items you already have at home.
One homesteading couple learns what a land survey plat is, and then proceeds to have a plat completed of their rural property.
This lentil-coconut soup recipe offers a rich and unique way to prepare protein-packed lentils using coconut milk and Indian spices. The masala and ginger will help cut the winter chill, transporting your taste buds to someplace warmer.
Don't wait if you plan to start beekeeping this year. If you want to be a beekeeper, now is the time and this blog post will provide you with information to prepare for the coming season.
Being stung is the most often quoted reason for not keeping honeybees. This was also my fear before I started keeping bees. There are ways to reduce your chances of being stung. With just a few precautions, you don't have to let this keep you from a rewarding hobby.
Awesome facts about the amazing honeybee.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will share her beekeeping goals for the New Year, along with some tips on how to make them happen.
An anecdote that illustrates a few of the realities of farm life and raising livestock.
This simple DIY project is a great way to display this seasons' holiday greetings, or to keep your mail organized. The materials are free or low-cost, depending on what’s in your recycling bin and craft or junk drawer!
Tap the Tomato Chooser app for info on 333 tomato varieties, plus help deciding which tomatoes to grow in your garden based on the traits you want.
Healthy homemade granola; easy on your budget, good for your family.
What could be lurking in the commercial honey you buy? Maybe it’s not honey at all, and would you think honey is healthy if you knew it contained corn syrup? Let’s talk about how commercial honey is produced and why you might want to find a local source for raw honey.
This simple DIY project is a quick and easy way to repurpose a metal tray into a pretty place to display photos, notes, even holiday cards. The supplies needed may be found in your home or bought inexpensively at a local craft/home improvement store or found at a thrift shop.
A brief update on how the bees are faring during a break in the freezing weather.
A surprise visit from some turkeys while hunting brought a Thanksgiving meal.
Making a roasted-root vegetable pot pie with biscuits in the shape of angels is the perfect comfort food.
Practical tips for transitioning through life's changes mindfully and healthfully. This will cover simple ways to get back on track and stay focused forward. Alex and Ashley share their own personal experience with picking back up and moving forward.
Don't wait until spring to get into beekeeping. Order your package honeybees now.
Dehydrating foods and making the most of the bounty.
Transforming the Thanksgiving leftovers into something wonderful can be a challenge. Try stuffing leftover turkey into Mexican poblano peppers.
Smooth out the temperature range in your greenhouse by adopting one of these strategies for heating greenhouses.
Jennifer Ford, of Bees of the Woods Apiary, will share how she uses honey and beeswax from her beehives to make useful and creative gifts.
What is the difference between hoarding stuff and money? Is there any difference?
This year I took several liberties in developing a new version of salsa verde. I don't grow tomatillos so I use green tomatoes. I won't call it salsa verde (except on the lids of my jars), because it isn't authentic. But let me tell you, it is GOOD. Here is Annie’s Green Tomato Salsa Recipe good for use when water bath canning.
A quick guide to deciding whether fresh or frozen organic whole turkeys are right for you, your farm, or your family.
Beekeeping has its benefits: raw honey, beeswax and pollination. With a quick check, you can find out if your community offers a rent-a-bee program. For a fee, you'll get a queen bee, hive colony and a mentor to get you started.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary talks about her experience with developing an allergy to honeybee venom, and how she manages this allergy to be able to continue beekeeping.
Way back when, I made mead. I think it was back with Leif Erickson or some guy by that name. Of course, back then we had rotary phones, the Internet existed as ARPANET (look it up), and I was on the cutting edge when it came to computer development. I also stumbled across a USENET post for how to make mead.
All you need to know about the island’s most fascinating export: New Zealand Manuka honey.
It's time to harvest honey and there must be a way to evict the bees from the super. This post covers three possible options.
Some things to know about the last fall hive inspections in preparing the bees for winter.
Goldenrod is starting to bloom in the beeyard now that the cooler weather is on its way.
"Folk Medicine" by D.C. Jarvis, M.D., written in 1958, explains how humans would do well to watch animals that know instinctively how to stay healthy. Jarvis advises drinking raw honey and apple cider vinegar for good health and vigor.
Jennifer Ford, of Bees of the Woods Apiary, explains how to produce comb honey, and why it is such a valuable product of the hive.
This week at Polyface Farm was a lot of fence installation, turkey processing and the making of some major life choices for some of my fellow interns.
At the Mother Earth News Fair in Puyallup, Wash, I listened to lecturers cover topics from re-newable energy, small-scale farming, green building, organic gardening, simple living, and citizen solidarity building. While I listened, I pondered ways to weave these powerful themes into our children's lives.
Finding the right balance between obligations can be a challenge.
In all that can go wrong in beekeeping, it's time to be grateful for a good season.
Should you do it yourself or hire a chimney sweep to clean your chimney?
Did you know that you can learn a lot about the condition of your beehives simply by watching the entrance of the hive? Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will explain what to look for, and what it might mean. No smoke or hive tool necessary!
A stack of cast-iron pans and a chainsaw helmet sum up why these homesteaders do what they do.
Learn how to clean your own woodstove and chimney.
Tucked in the pines, this preserved New Jersey food heritage site is where cultivated high bush blueberries were born.
Raw honey isn’t just delicious — read on to learn some of the medicinal uses for it.
In this blog, I hope to convince beekeepers that not feeding the bees is better for the health of the bees and for the beekeeper's bottom line.
The true essence of Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training and Archi’s Acres is about lending a helping hand and empowering veterans to create a sustainable positive future through agribusiness.
Locating a queen in a hive full of thousands of bees can be hard. Here are a few tips.
Propolis is becoming a very popular “bee product” in the natural health arena. The fact that it is produced in nature does not make a product sustainable. We must always be aware of the toll that the harvest of that product makes on the organism that creates it.
Here I describe the honey harvest and how it varies from year to year.
The United Kingdom is testing the power of green transportation with a fleet of all-electric buses running the same rigorous schedule as their diesel counterparts.
In previous posts, we have looked at how guard donkeys work and we’ve examined the pros and cons of using a donkey as a livestock guardian. If you are contemplating using a donkey, let’s look now at how to select a good candidate and how to integrate him or her into your stock.
On May 27, the Rachel Carson Homestead Association and the Carnegie Museum of Natural History are hosting the Celebrate Biodiversity Symposium in Pittsburgh, Penn., to celebrate the United Nations World Environment Day. Read to find out more and to register.
Finally some sun, too bad it is during the work week!
From roasting on a split to baking in a tannur, you'll find rediscovered techniques and recipes that capture the flavors of wood-fired cooking in "Cooking With Fire" by Paula Marcoux.
"The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver" by Karen Patry will answer your questions about rabbit housing, feeding, behavior, health care, breeding and kindling.
Turkeys are surprisingly tough to raise, coop are remarkably simple to raise and thanksgiving a given.
Worker B continues expanding product line with beeswax candles.
Worker B is returning to their beekeeping roots and adding raw honey to their collection of products.
Lean, grass-fed beef is perfect for making jerky.
Essential oils can be a useful supplement for honeybees. Lemongrass, spearmint and thyme essential oils are being used to encourage brood development and the overall health of bees.
Going solar at home will save you both money and energy. See why it's the future for renewable energy in residential areas.
Reading label ingredients is a must for your baby's health.
Chase down household leaks and fix them to save water and money during the Earth Gauge #FixALeak Week.
Get advice on all things garden seed, from organizing seeds and ordering seeds to understanding seed catalog terms such as open-pollinated and F1 hybrid.
Reynaldo Ochoa, the subject of a new short film, grows with a goal of teaching and practicing permaculture unique to an individual's region, emphasizing sustainable farming as opposed to “slash and burn” agriculture.
Our first project: building a small keyhole mound.
Taking a bath in the winter takes a little more planning at our off-grid, no-plumbing home.
Inspired by the recent Mother Earth News article, "65 Money Saving Tips", this piece shares how we at the Be the Change Product spend little and live better.
Faith leaders urge Obama to reject Keystone XL pipeline project in order to curb carbon emissions and protect God’s Creation.
When and how to feed your honeybees.
The spirits industry is changing dramatically. However, owning and knowing how to use a still could be of great benefit to you. Knowing how to make a strong alcohol puts you in an immediate position of power.
A copy of "Good Housekeeping" magazine from 1944 reminds us how housewives found ways to stretch meals, repair household items and plant gardens to overcome wartime rationing hardships.
Colony Collapse Disorder is threatening the future of bee pollination. Here's what we can do about it.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will discuss how to enjoy a little taste of summer in the middle of winter by developing a new appreciation for honey!
Using fresh raw cream to make butter by hand.
How to make a cheap hay feeder for goats that cuts down on wasted hay.
The rich and diverse marine life of the Florida Keys can be experienced without ever getting wet: in a kayak, on a sailboat or at one of the many animal rescue or rehabilitation centers scattered along the Keys.
Using a mortar and pestle to create a variety of spice and herb blends.
Describes the winter hive life of the honey bees.
Musing on how most of us believe "the end" is near for various reasons.
In 2014, I resolve to stay curious about the incredible world that we live in and continue to ask plenty of questions each day. I resolve to learn new things and stay informed and aware of global issues.
Describes the heartache that can come of now observing and working with nature when raising goats.
What is a beekeeper to do during the long cold winter months? Eat honey of course.
Safely bring a new goat herd home and getting them used to you and their new surroundings.
Need gift ideas? Check out these 10 natural beauty products, including lip balm, face wash, body wash, nail polish and more.
This series of posts chronicles Betty Taylor's adventures in goat farming. This first post covers selecting a goat breed and breeder, costs, and preparing for arrival of my goats.
Below is a detailed interview with Alex Poptodorov regarding his journey to obtaining his N.D. Degree and how he chose to pursue Holistic Medicine instead of Western medicine.
Beekeeping expert Betty Taylor explains how to reliquify crystalized honey while maintaining color, quality, and nutrients.
A small apiary uses a unique system to extract honey from frames.
A Garden Planner subscription is a budget-friendly gift that offers the satisfaction of spending the chillier chunks of the calendar plotting the bounty ahead.
Beekeeping basics and how to keep bees safely and simply.
Honey from our backyard bees provide us with a sweetener, but just as important, honey has many health benefits.
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.
Encouragement for new beekeepers who may be confused and overwhelmed about all the conflicting advice about keeping bees.
Through all of the tears and the heartbreak, I have found that having a pet makes us more human. Please why everyone should have at least one best friend that is furry.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary explains how they prepare their beehives to survive the long cold winter in upstate New York.
Kefir is very rich in probiotic nutrition and quite simple to make at home. This blog will help you learn how to do so.
How to prepare your hives for the winter to protect them from mice, skunks, opossums and other wildlife.
If you are hoping to build a new home or weekend cottage, we would appreciate your participation in this short survey, which will gauge your interest in a variety of possible kit home features.
Help us learn more about the imported brown marmorated stink bug by taking this survey.
The Keystone Center, in partnership with the Pennsylvania German Cultural Heritage Center, is hosting a regional food workshop called “The Traditional Winter Garden: Fresh Food From December to March.”
Although used less commonly than dogs or llamas, here is one more possibility for a livestock guardian – a guard donkey.
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.
Having guests visit your beeyard takes a lot of planning and preparation. Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary shares her experience having visitors in the beeyard, along with some tricks and tips to make the visit go more smoothly for everyone.
Technology similar to that used for tracking street use may be used to track pedestrians and keep them safe.
Renewable energy accounts for nearly 50 percent of added capacity in US in 2012.
Cherished Aladdin lamps were on display at a recent collectors show in Topeka, Kan.
Getting back to nature reminds us of what we are fighting so hard to protect.
You can make these outdoor chairs for less than $80 by recycling a whiskey barrel and using a few other supplies from your workshop.
Homesteads are keeping alive old skills and ways of raising crops and livestock that are being lost in the age of agribusiness.
Although winter may seem a long way off, starting to prepare your beehives for winter now will pay off later. Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will describe what they do to get their beehives ready for winter.
Learn how one person is celebrating her birthday by raising money to bring clean water to those who need it.
Skylight scoops are the latest design in skylights which help save more energy and enhance a building’s environment.
A sudden onset of a canine eye disease called SARDS leaves dogs totally blind very suddenly. Bruce McElmurray explains this disrder from a personal perspective.
Choose a pastured turkey rather than an industrial turkey this Thanksgiving. Follow these turkey cooking tips and discover why heritage turkeys are a better choice than commercial turkeys.
Using only honey and water, you can make naturally fermented mead to enjoy at home.
Beekeeper Betty Taylor explains what for look for during an end-of-summer hive inspection.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary explains how to prevent, identify and stop robbing in the beeyard.
Sharing some of what we have learned about treating Pink Eye naturally, as in our region, this has been an epidemic summer due to all the rain and flies.
A WWOOFer (Worldwide Opportunity on Organic Farms reflects on her second visit to an organic herb farm, where she learned more about plant harvesting, medicine making and natural building
Our Vegetable Garden Planner assists you in planting your fall garden by giving you planting dates specific to your location, projected harvest dates and more.
Moms, protect your baby’s health with this safe, homemade sunscreen.
Bee populations in cities are increasing, but urban settings aren't set up to provide lots of forage for honey bees...or are they?
Jennifer Ford shows how she extracts and bottles her "liquid gold" honey at Bees of the Woods Apiary.
One of the oldest CSAs in the country and how they do it.
One of the most fun parts of beekeeping is harvesting honey. Here we will look at the first part of the honey harvest, removing the honey supers from the hives, and how to store them safely.
Responsible investment secures land for a young organic farmer in Minnesota.
Bee populations in urban settings are increasing, but urban settings aren’t set up to provide lots of forage for honey bees... or are they?
Two young Vermonters make the small farm a reality with some creative financing.
Notes on immigrant farm labor and livable wages.
The sweet spot in self sufficiency is to have just enough...with a bit of surplus to meet your needs and a few friends and neighbors.
Local farmers lease Amherst College land to provide for the school’s dining hall.
A western Massachusetts community rallies to save a generations old farm.
What began as a hobby for her young son turned into a lucrative honey production business for beekeeper and MOTHER EARTH NEWS reader Alissa Brandemuhl-Zengel.
If know you're destined to live in the country, or just more self-reliantly, but are overwhelmed by all the choices, here's a place to start.
A new danger faces unborn babies and children, as exposure to pesticides increases the risk of brain tumors and other cancer-related illnesses.
Missouri farmer and HOMEGROWN Life blogger Bryce Oates tackles the Enbridge Flanagan South Pipeline, which would cross 1 mile from his area's water intake.
The story of two ladies and their small CSA in the Rocky Mountains.
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!
Learn how to make creative, impactful, and (surprisingly) classy DIY gift tags from soda cans and thumbtacks.
This Beginner’s Pepper-Peach Chutney Recipe is sweeter and milder than many chutney recipes.
In this section you will find stories of real farmers across the country that made it work. You'll find their story, how they did it and who helped them. We hope these stories will inspire and educate new farmers, as well as land owners and community members to become involved in the new agrarian movement. A growing trust.
The vagaries of beekeeping jargon and its importance to the beginning natural beekeeper.
Catching a swarm of bees is awesome. Now learn how to take care of them.
Have you started your tomatoes and peppers yet? 'Tis the season to start seeding long season crops indoors. If you normally buy organic starts from your local nursery, try your hand at seed starting.
Five people and two U.S. honey processors were charged with ‘honey laundering’. Investigators found illegally imported honey from China.
The traditional potato stamp gets a makeover in this tutorial over how to use a spud to make a work of art (and gratitude).
We buy a Jersey cow to use as a calf foster mom.
Learn how to rotate crops with this helpful crop rotation video.
How we avoid most clutter but manage to keep good leftover products for future use.
A healthier version of the classic rice risotto, delicious barley risotto is easy to make and can be modified with whatever ingredients you have in your kitchen.
Use care when cooking red kidney beans in the crockpot. The beans contain a toxin that can be activated if the beans are raw or undercooked.
There are advantages to keeping track of the cost of keeping chickens as well as the benefits. Here's a cost/benefit analysis from our own experience.
Making the most of a winter walk to home.
Cam discovers he isn't as young as he once was while enjoying a sense of community at the local arena.
What exactly is ‘modern homesteading"? There are as many definitions as there are people doing it. What does the term ‘modern homesteading’ mean to you?
We haul our water from the river - walking water!
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Rachel, of Dog Island Farm, argues in favor of her favorite chicken breed, the Buckeye.
Ira Wallace explores good winter gardening reads, gives advice on how to use the winter lull wisely to plan and prepare, and shares an update in the ongoing court battle to protect family farmers from agri-giant Monsanto.
Grow calcium in your garden with collards, kale, and parsley. Suggestions are given for including these crops in your meals. Learn about companions to plant among your collards and kale to deter harmful insects.
Talking about the new Chocolate Turkeys we saw on Saturday and how to properly plant into a kill mulch without doing much damage to the killing.
Growing Local Food is a new book that encompasses all the needed basics to grow plants, keep heritage breed animals and bees. The author is a homesteader and physician who gives the readers the basic information to grow or find nutritious, local food
Therapeutic grade essential oils have a tonne of uses on the homestead - here's how we've used them effectively, and how they bring us peace of mind.
After Greensburg was destroyed in 2007, the citizens of Greensburg, with the help of GreenTown, have invested in green building for a better tomorrow.
We bring power from the array inside the building and put it to work.
My boyfriend and I traveled from Orlando, FL with the expectation that we were going to encounter a life-changing experience. It was well worth it. I felt like a kid in a candy store.
Red Brand Fence (manufactured by Keystone Steel and Wire), recently received an award for their recycling initiatives by their industry peers.
The factory farm creates the wealth for the doctors, lawyers, government regulators, and bankers … is it ironic that these same professionals will choose a Beechnut Turkey or an Oaknut Ham from Big Horn Ranch for their family gathering?
There’s never, ever been a better time to get involved with honey bees and beekeeping.
What follows are my top 6 tips on how to start beekeeping; a most wonderful hobby that I urge everyone to take up.
A story of one of our camping trips to Torreya State Park, Florida.
The time to prepare for livestock or pet emergencies is not when they fall ill, but before. Here are some basics so you and your critters are covered.
Our power system begins to take shape.
How do you find the best chicken coop design for your new flock? We'll help you walk through the evaluation process AND get a free analysis spreadsheet to help you decide.
Iain continues to battle with the frustration of starting up a candle making business hitting trouble at every corner. Here he talks about his plans moving forward and how he still plans to succeed in his socially responsible candle making business
One workshop at the Puyallup, Wa., MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR was on learning how to make butter, hosted by Organic Valley.
Tips on how to help save fuel and money while driving.
How we clean out chimney on our A - Frame house with a steep roof.
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.
Our humble abode begins to take shape.
A Grade 1 group come through the farm for a tour
James discusses exactly how to paint a beehive. Sometimes it can be a fiddly job but using an array of stepladders and poles it can be pretty simple
There are many more ways than ever to earn income without ever leaving the homestead. As energy prices rise, earning the money you need without traveling is key to success. It just might not come from the place you expect.
This blog post tells what life was like on the self-sustaining farm of Olen and Anna Mae Showman located in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia during the middle of the 20th century.
There are times when I find beekeeping stressful but most of the time not of my own making. I discuss here the weather, when bees decide to do things you don't want and when you are just totally unprepared!
Over in the UK we do our beekeeping conventions a little bit differently than in the United States, and so I thought you might like to see a video of our latest one a few weeks ago: the BBKA Spring Convention.
There's honey in the hive, peaches on the trees, and food on the table, but it's still a long way from self-sufficiency.
A roof is a wonderful thing to have!
Top bar hive modifications, turkey traps, and gourmet potatoes are just a few of the topics covered in the past week of blogging we've been up to. Homesteading healthcare and a new virtual book club round off the week with several reader comments.
If you have ever thought about beekeeping photography then this article is perfect. Geoff Fitzgerald talks about his motivation for the topic and what got him started on the rooftops of Brooklyn. There are also some fantastic urban beekeeping photos.
Been on the hunt for an electric or hybrid minivan? The options are currently limited in the United States, but a wider selection of green minivan options should be on the market soon.
I started my poultry quest way too early for New Englanders: January! I marked my calendar in red and drew childish pictures of a chicken on the calendar blocks. I was as impatient as a 6-year-old waiting for Christmas morning.
Day Length, Molting and Egg Production in a Small Flock
Why raise chickens? Because they’re the pet that makes you breakfast.
If you've been on this rural living or modern homesteading journey for decades, or just starting out, how do you know when you've arrived?
Iain, working to build his socially responsible candle-making company, gets all his new equipment arriving from Holland.
Finally, we start to take shape.
The mild winter, early sring and continued warm weather are really messing up the normal sequene of bloom and availability of honeybee food. What will happen this summer is anyone's guess. Be Prepared.
Sue Weaver provides her expertise on making homemade cheeses and yogurt and how to raise a happy, healthy, and highly productive backyard cow.
Eggs aren't the only things that come from the business end of a chicken. But with a little time and materials, and even less ingenuity, the rest can set you up with a free and steady supply of valuable organic fertilizer.
Being a father myself I really want my children to enjoy my passion and this is a great example of teaching children how to appreciate what bees get up to. With a little patience this is a fantastic family beekeeping activity enjoyed by all.
I learned life lessons early in life as a newspaper delivery boy. Valuable lessons that carried on though life.
This is a great first guest post for Geoff Fitzgerald and his beekeeping photography aspirations. Follow his journey here.
The unintended death of a charming little creature raises the realities of life on a farm homestead.
Beekeeping can bring many benefits other than a great hobby and honey production. Follow Iain as he tries to build a socially responsible company helping disabled people make beeswax candles.
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.
One of our most common grasses is limiting the bobwhite quail population, killing broodmares and their foals, rotting cow hooves, and cutting milk production.
Explains the benefits of organic fertilizers such as rock phosphate, kelp, fish meal and greensand, and tells you how to get buy these materials at reasonable prices.
Instead of learning new tricks, we devise new ways to do the same old tricks.
These recipes with filling, protein-packed whole grains such as quinoa and millet are great options for no-meat or low-meat diets.
We settle in for a long winter's work.
If you're pondering a move to the country and think your life will suddenly get blissfully silent, think again.
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.
This blog is called Breadcrumbs, because it brings together a diverse set of topics, including the patron saint of bread, sourdough, starters, yeasts, and a recipe for corn pancakes.
Barbara Pleasant offers a step-by-step plan to starting seeds.
You don't have to depend on nature to feed your bees. Take matters into your own hands and plant enough good food for your bees, so they have good, safe food all year long.
We finally see walls and a loft floor.
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.
How a born and bred city boy came to leave Detroit, start a Tennessee homestead with his wife, and blog about it here.
Whether you have a small grove of trees or acres of woods, this manual will guide you through the right methods to care for and sustain your land.
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!
Has the "magic" energy solution been discovered?
A Christmas Wish for all, inspired by the magic of the honey bee.
Three U.S. regional beekeeping associations offer much to beekeepers at any skill level and experience. Beeyard adventures, workshops, lectures, honey shows, and the chance to meet hundreds of likemined individuals await you here.
A great recipe for the holidays or any time of the year!
Try a vegetarian version of traditional Hoppin John for good luck this New Year's day.
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.
If you are looking for gifts for beekeepers this blog post could be perfect encompasing books, clothes, equipment and even wrapping paper. This is perfect fodder for all of you that need to buy presents for beekeepers!
We now have something to walk on other than dirt!
There are many beekeeping associations in the U.S., national, regional and local. The two National Groups are discussed, looking at members, activities and goals.
17 ideas to lower the cost of holiday gifting, entertainment, decorating and office parties.
What are you thankful for this season? Our editors know what they are thankful for, now let's hear from you.
At last, we construct the foundation.
I love rural life and modern homesteading, but there are days when the comfort of a city condo would be welcome indeed. And honestly? A relief.
In more shocking news about the honey on U.S. store shelves, a Food Safety News study analyzes more than 60 jars of honey and finds that nearly all of them have been ultra-filtered to disguise their potentially tainted and toxic origins.
Robert Zwald shares his childhood experiences of selling frogs for fish bait and working on the family farm in the 1920s. This is part three of eight of Robert's stories.
The political system is not broken.
A TED talk by Christy Hemenway of Gold Star Honeybees: Making the Connection: Honeybees, Food, and You.
How do you keep backyard chickens safe from poultry predators? With a bit of elbow grease and a few tips, your girls will be safe from sharp teeth.
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!
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.
We finally build somthing!
Are EV's actually being marketed, or a ruse by traditional manufacturers?
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.
This week saw the first ever honey show in London, and what a joy it was for all involved. Based at the Lancaster Hotel in London, the first hotel in the UK to put beehives on their roof, it was the perfect location for such a great event.
We look for materials bargains while devising a way to pay for it all.
Is there such thing as a poultry pop star? If so, then I think I am one.
If, like many beginning beekeepers, you've been confused by how to perform an artificial swarm, watch this beekeeper training video to get a solid grasp on the concept.
These resources will help you learn how to eat seasonal foods in order to save grocery money.
Some people just do not want help! The frustrations of starting a business and attempting to offer professional help to community organizations.
When getting a top bar hive ready for winter, you need to know how much honey there is...and measureing these frames is different than measuring rectangular frames.
Turning liabilities into assests.
This gift set of four farm-themed board books features illustrations that tell the story of a day in the life of each of four animals: chickens, goats, cows and pigs.
Chef Gordon Hamersley's Vegetable Tian makes use of tomatoes, squash and eggplant--all in their prime right now.
Let's stop for a minute and think about what we are doing!
Kim Flottum of "Bee Culture Magazine" and Christy Hemenway of Gold Star Honeybees discuss tips and techniques of keeping bees in different types of hives - top bar hives and conventional Langstroth hives.
Is the electric car all it's cracked up to be? Let's find out!
We've had a few surprises as we travel the road of backyard chicken raising - some of them pleasant, some not so much. Here are a few things we've learned that might help you as you decide whether or not to get chickens for your backyard.
Beginning a discussion on top bar hives and standard hives in a question and answer format, getting the best of each for users of both kinds of hives.
Purchase process of the "promised land"
Demise of the Southern Energy and Environmental (See) Expo
“The Cleaner Plate Club” co-author Beth Bader shares an adventure to the farmers market with her daughter, her “eat local” food values, and her recipe for Lemongrass Tomato Soup.
It's time to start thinking of winter for your bees. They much have enough food to get through the long months when no food is coming in. It's your job to see that they do.
Jeff and wife Kathy have lived off-grid since 2002. They strive to inform the public about ways to live inexpensively, and to further the principle of sustainability. Visit their website to learn more: www.naturalpower.weebly.com
Two Ogden Publications employees turned beekeeping beginners seperate the honey from the comb in the MOTHER EARTH NEWS parking lot. Thier backyard hives are only four miles away for making sweet, local honey.
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.
Black bears and rural living go hand in hand in many parts of North America. So how do you keep bear/human conflicts to a minimum?
To satisfy today's home buyer, a developer of million-dollar luxury homes in New York is offering smaller, more affordable houses--more anecdotal evidence that the McMansion is dying.
As the economy improves, the trend toward smaller homes is reversing.
Buzz is brewing about Bee-a-Thon 2011, an online "town hall" event scheduled for July 16, 2011, from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. A variety of bee experts — from beekeepers to academics to environmentalists — will discuss the importance of bees and the critical challenges of colony collapse disorder.
Wabi-sabi has infused Western design for centuries—though its advocates rarely knew it. It’s in the plain, efficient homes built by the Shakers, the unsentimental Arts and Crafts style, Frank Lloyd Wright's Prairie houses and midcentury furniture.
How can someone who claims to be a 'modern homesteader' not have planted her garden by the end of June, you ask? Well, let me tell you...
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!
Ann Harvey Yonkers, founder of Washington, D.C.'s FreshFarm Markets co-op, nests eggs in a bed of wilted fresh greens for a delicious meatless summertime brunch or dinner.
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!
Americans are being asked to turn up the thermostat 3 degrees on June 21. If you find you don't notice the difference, why not keep it up? You will notice the difference in your electric bill.
See who's bigger than Chicken Little when skies don't fall on this bird.
When our chicks arrived, we had no idea how much we had to learn about how to raise baby chicks. Nor did we know how much the books couldn't tell us.
The beekeeping presentation in the kids' booth at the Tree House Club was filled with enthusiastic kids. Check out what one kid had to say about his time spent with the bees.
Get a glimpse of some of the unique exhibitors at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS Associate Editor Shelley Stonebrook offers tips for building permanent garden beds and paths. Shelley presented her workshop “10 Great Ways to Make Gardening Easier” at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR in Puyallup, Wash.
It's opening day at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR! We're covering all kinds of cool gardening topics at the Organic Gardening Stage.
Prepping for major emergencies - earthquakes, floods, tornadoes - is important, but so is emergency planning for less dramatic events. Find out what you can do to reduce the potential for stress.
People are often apprehensive about preserving their own food, whether they're intimidated by the process, or concerned about the safety of the finished product. As Sherri Brooks Vinton explains, it's time to bring canning back to the home kitchen.
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.
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.
The development of gluten intolerance persuaded me to investigate the possibility of an heirloom wheat flour that might not cause the gluten reaction of wheat-based products.
With country living, you expect a quiet night's sleep. But surprise, surprise - nature has its own alarm clock.
It helps us feel better to know "why" things happen, but we don't always get to know that answer...
Adding solar panels can increase a home's resale value by as much as $17,000, a new Lawrence Berkeley Lab report finds.
Kate and Jeff are building their off-the-grid dream near Taos, New Mexico. As they build themselves a small straw bale house and make do with a few solar panels, they're realizing how little they really need.
As grocery prices rise, now more than ever we need tools to save money. These websites help you get organized and give you the tools you need to buy the best--for less.
Save money and gas this Earth Day — and every day! — by using these five green driving tips from the Car Care Council.
The Lehigh Valley Green Builders is presenting its third annual Green Home and Building Expo.
Organic Coconut Sugar is made from sap collected from the freshly cut flower buds of organic coconut palm trees grown on small, sustainable farms.
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"!
Are you a modern homesteader with pioneering women in your lineage? My great grandmothers were all pioneers, but our lives could not be more different.
Chickens - how do you know if you’re the ‘chicken type’? If you’re pondering a backyard flock, there are a few questions you need to ask yourself.
Strongly influenced by wabi-sabi's principles, the leaders of the Arts and Crafts movement railed against "the swinish luxury of the rich," ornamental excess and the poverty of people who lacked creativity.
When Steve Sikora and Lynette Erickson-Sikora restored Frank Lloyd Wright's first small, affordable home, they discovered how green the iconic architect really was.
Our “needs” for the latest gadgets elevates our energy consumption, even with the onslaught of energy-efficient appliances and consumer electronics in recent years.
Harvesting honey from an experimental frameless beehive.
Treat your cat to fresh spring herbs when you whip up this healthy homemade kitty food.
Homeowners are willing to splurge on kitchen and bath remodels, but they're not interested in building luxury or second homes, according to an American Institute of Architects survey.
Organic Architect's Eric Corey Freed shows designers what green really means during Dining by Design, a charity event featuring tabletop installations in New York.
Restoring a heritage log cabin is not something to embark on on a whim, but it can be one of the most rewarding things you'll ever do.
Slower growth in crop yields, high oil prices and use of food crops to make biofuels could push food prices higher for the next year and beyond.
Companion planting can be a great strategy for organic gardeners. Take our nationwide companion planting survey to help us gather useful information about this gardening technique.
Do easy ways to save money exist? Absolutely! Blissful saving is only a trip to the bulk section away! When you get home from the store, keep track of your finances on Mint.com; then look for Groupon's daily deal. Search the house for unused items and sell them on eBay. Use these tips to start saving today!
Ken Ruck wants to build a fully self-sustaining earthship on New York's Lower East Side.
Find out the easiest way to use greywater in your home.
I got first bee removal call of the year yesterday. It’s a bit early, but hey, I won’t complain. The woman said that she thought there were three colonies in her wall.
Two Brooklyn filmmakers found a way to grow fresh food in the city--in the bed of a 1986 Dodge pickup.
Americans continue to believe that green homes make a difference--but they need to be more affordable.
It’s been bitterly cold in Michigan. The big blizzard has gone through and has left us with a bunch of snow.
How using a refractometer can increase your honey production, how a refractometer works and how to use a refractometer.
Tell America's largest chocolate company that slave labor and Valentine's Day chocolate don't mix.
As world food prices hit a record high, follow these tips for reducing your grocery bill while still eating well.
The ground hog may be signalling an early end to winter, but today's a day to stay in with good food, an arsenal of craft projects and a warming bath.
Wondering when to buy chickens? February to June is the best time to buy baby chicks if you are interested in raising chickens, or if you are looking into getting different types of poultry. This timing not only helps the chicks, but will often get deals for you. Also, check out the directory of hatcheries to make finding your poultry easier.
A look at how many hives to start with when beginning beekeeping.
Marley Audio Electronics collection, which debuted last week, showcases premium, eco-conscious manufacturing and materials, including hemp.
Turn low value plastic trash into valuable building blocks with a $300 homemade press. Free plans for a hand operated press are available. A mechanized version could be made by converting a log splitter.
Readers share their best ideas for saving money on meat and their recipes for almost meatless, flexitarian meals.
Simran Sethi explains how the green faith movement can provide common ground among different groups.
We’re looking for reader tips about the worst garden weeds and how best to manage them. Share you advice with us, and read how other readers are dealing with weeds in their gardens.
Some of Natural Home’s favorite paint and wallcovering companies get pretty in pink.
While some can't wait for the warmer days to return and others are invigorated by the seasonal briskness, most of us have some cold-weather habit, holiday activity or winter ritual that we hold dear. Whether it's burrowing under thick piles of blankets, watching for the first snow flakes or getting a head start on garden planning, what are your favorite winter moments?
Two new federal programs, the Home Energy Scoring program and the PowerSaver program, make it easier for homeowners to save energy.
A new episode in the PBS series Journey to Planet Earth, hosted by Matt Damon, will feature Mother Earth News contributing editor and visionary Lester Brown’s “Plan B” on how we can save civilization in the face of global climate change.
This year's Blog Action Day topic is water, and thousands of bloggers around the world are joining together to provide valuable information, increase awareness and help readers learn more about the state of water, why they should care, and what they can do to help.
The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy announces the new Heritage Turkey publication, Selecting Your Best Turkey for Breeding. The resource highlights on the history of Heritage Turkeys and how to raise the breed.
Recap of 2010 growing season in Northwest Pennsylvania
Paul Carmichael of Lily of the Valley Herb Farm talks about his experience at the 2010 MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR, including the top herbs and working with kids at the Treehouse Club.
Take our Pest Control Survey and read the feedback of hundreds of gardeners that have already taken the survey. Get region-specific advice about the most common garden pests and the best organic control options.
The ARCX dome has been sold to young couple!
If you’re thinking of keeping a colony of honeybees to increase the pollinator population in your garden or orchard, you may want to consider “hygienic” bees developed at the University of Minnesota. They have fewer Varroa mites and are less likely to suffer from two bee diseases: American foulbrood and chalkbrood, so they should be a good choice for a low-maintenance hive of bees.
World renowned oceanographer Sylvia Earle explains the poor maintenance of the world's oceans, and necessary steps to take in order for this damage to be reversed.
Michael Morley is posting regular updates about his progress building a unique green home with structural insulated panels (SIPs). Here he talks about HVAC work and installing windows.
Disneynature is premiering its new documentary, Oceans, on Earth Day 2010 to show the beauty and harsh reality of the Caribbean's threatened coral reefs. A portion of the proceeds from tickets purchased from April 22 thru 28 will go to support the preservation of coral reefs in the Bahamas.
Michael Morley is making progress on the SIPs home he's building in Lawrence, Kan. The roof is in place and the shell is essentially done.
Michael Morley has an exciting update on the house he's building in Lawrence, Kan. The dome is starting to go up!
Earth Days, a poignant, 2009 Sundance Film Fesitval success, will premier on Facebook April 11, and on the PBS Network April 19.
If you're a veteran gardener, please consider signing up to take out online gardening surveys. The surveys allow us to write articles based on the collective experience of hundreds of gardeners and report the results back to you by region. Sign up here.
Michael Morley's SIPs home project is underway, and despite an unexpected snowstorm, progress has been made on the concrete slab and the risers.
Michael Morley's SIPs home project is underway. On Tuesday, March 2, the excavator dug trench footings in at the site.
Michael Morley will post regular updates about his progress building a unique green home with structural insulated panels (SIPs). Here, he discusses options for installing a colored concrete floor, and considering whether to install a solar hot water system.
Learn more about this building project, which utilizes SIP technology combined with an unusual geometry.
Learn how to successfully hatch and raise turkey poults after reading these tips.
Raising heritage turkeys is a great way to preserve rare breeds and add diversity to your homestead — or backyard poultry flock. Experts from S and S Poultry compare the qualities of six heritage breeds of turkeys.
More than 30 years ago, Michael Reynolds followed his vision of sustainable, energy-efficient homes that would work with nature. Today, his Earthships inspire green designers and architects.
We're excited for the second annual Escape from Berkeley rally. Last year, MAX won the inaugural event from Berkeley to Las Vegas. This year, it's a run for the Mexican border!
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence visits Canada's only straw bale winery, Orofino Vineyards.
Guard donkeys and a good pen for nighttime can be vital to protecting new lambs and kids, especially with coyotes on the prowl. Find out how all it takes is one small mistake to produce fatal consequences on the farm.
The turkey nursery (a.k.a. the hen house) is busy at Rancho Cappuccino. One turkey hen is raising a mini-flock of chicks, while another hatches a surprise batch of poults.
Save money and stay chic with these recessionista style tips from Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence. Robyn shows you how to creatively reuse old shirts to dress up a bottle of wine and how to save money by having clothing swap parties.
How you spend your money matters more than ever these days. Here’s an easy way to connect with your community and make your dollars count.
Weatherizing your home saves you money. Just a few simple changes can greatly reduce the amount of energy your home requires to stay comfortable. Natural Home magazine editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence fills you in on how to weatherize your home and collect stimulus money.
From the Science Channel, watch the Brink TV show's spotlight on MAX and its victory in the Escape from Berkeley race.
Every Feb. 2, Punxsutawney Phil comes out of his home at Gobbler's Knob in Punxsutawney, Penn. to see if he has a shadow and if winter is here to stay. Learn all about Groundhog Day, from the ceremony and tradition to music and a video of the famous Phil.
This Thanksgiving consider opting for a pastured turkey instead of a commercially raised bird, and think about buying local Thanksgiving foods, too.
Last spring, I decided to raise my own free-range turkey for Thanksgiving. Here’s how that project turned out.
As more people decide to pay a little extra for locally grown pastured turkey, demand may not meet supply. Make sure your bird is secure by buying farm-direct or shopping early.
Ready, set, save! Try these online calculators for help finding the best ways to save energy and money at home.
Check out Earth's Journey for recycled, up-cycled and/or environmentally friendly art.
Hoch Ybrig cheese from Swiss cheese maker Rolf Beeler is a standout on its own, but here are some delicious ideas for pairing it with honey, wine and beer.
What kind of mpg did MAX get in the race? How did Jack get fuel along the way? How much can you get for a t-shirt and a copy of Mother Earth News? Answers to these exciting questions inside!
MAX debuts by taking the checkered flag of the 800+ mile, no gasoline consumed, Escape from Berkeley race.
MAX wins the Escape from Berkeley race!!
MAX is encountering robust competition at Escape from Berkeley
MAX is hitting 60 mpg. That's better than a Prius, and before we get serious about streamlining.
Who isn't worried about the economy right now? Here's some good advice on what to do with your money.
Honey bees began to disappear in October 2006 and continue to do so. Find out how you can help the problem.
Learn more about how you can reuse waste water from your home.
Follow this advice for avoiding and treating bee stings.
Beano, Rancho Cappuccino's resident guard donkey, appears to be experiencing maternal envy. Without a baby of her own, she's taken to borrowing (unasked, of course) the lambs and kids of the sheep and goats she protects.
In Alexander and Ashley Poptodorov's blog, they will detail the journey towards obtaining an N.D. Degree as well as teach tips/tools for living off the land and giving back.
After finding the illegal presence of genetically engineered wheat in Oregon, the USDA has found another, similar case in Montana.
Second annual report shows how homeowners consume and conserve energy; one third willing to cool off in undergarments rather than turn down the A/C.