spring to do list
After the snow leaves to do list for us.
Springtime in Urbania can be fraught with temptations at the stores. I have managed to navigate these temptations, sometimes just by 'smelling the clover hay'! Now that the veggies are in, all we have to do is wait for the summer vegetable frittata!
Although used less commonly than dogs or llamas, here is one more possibility for a livestock guardian – a guard donkey.
Dogsleds are clean, green and run on renewable energy.
Winter is over and the colors of spring are here!
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.
Cam describes a recent encounter with some aggressive dogs.
Many people waste too much time each trying to get motivated to work. As a result, they get a lot less done than they need to or would like to. In this blog, I show a way that has helped me for many years get motivated to work and stay on task.
Learn how to make soap with Robin Bedford of Possum Hollow Farm Soap.
Chris Lubkemann of Fox Chapel Publishing will present a workshop on whittling at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Mike Orr of Fox Chapel Publishing will present a workshop on homemade instruments at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
With its new clothing tags, Levi’s encourages consumers to donate unwanted clothes to Goodwill.
Americans are turning to smaller, affordable housing. Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence looks into this trend.
Plant pathologist Dr. Don Huber brings attention to concerns surrounding Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide, glyphosate.
Docking of dairy cows serves no purpose and causes pain and discomfort for the
Livestock guard dogs were found in a sweep of cultures from southern Europe through Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and central Asia. They worked in the company of shepherds who often spent weeks on high summer pasture or on long migratory routes.
Jan Dohner explains how the different Livestock Guard Dog breeds were developed and introduces us to their differences in style of work, temperament and other behaviors.
In a previous post, “What is a Livestock Guard Dog?,” I described what livestock guard dogs do but it is also exceptionally important to know how they do this job. Understanding how not only helps us work with our LGDs but also explains why other breeds or crosses with non-LGD breeds are not likely to perform this same outstanding job.
Livestock guard dogs are an attractive choice for predator control on the farm. Jan Dohner gives us an honest look at the pros and cons of choosing a Livestock guard dog versus a guard donkey or llama.
In Part One of this post, Jan Dohner explained how the different Livestock Guard Dog breeds were developed and introduces us to their differences in style of work, temperament and other behaviors. In Parts Two and Three, we take a brief look at some of the more common LGD breeds available in North America.
In this post, Jan Dohner describes the different roles a livestock guard dog can perform on a farm or homestead - a full-time livestock guardian, a general farm guardian, or a family companion.
In our last few posts, we’ve been looking at the various breeds of livestock guard dogs. But before you start looking at advertisements or litters of puppies, there are a few more questions for you to ask yourself. They are centered on two broad issues – your predator problems and your farm or homestead.
Ed and Joan Kobrinski left a large family home for a smaller, simpler cottage—and they’ve never looked back. Their tips for downsizing and living in smaller spaces could help make your transition easier.
The newest member at Goat Song Farm: A 3 week old, purebred Nubian doeling named 'Rose Of Summer'.
North Carolinian Master Beekeeper, Tia Douglass, offers an introduction to chemical-free, natural beekeeping, bees and approach to raising pollinators.
Repairing or replacing trim around a door is easy, and you need only a few simple tools.
Roger Doiron, a MOTHER EARTH NEWS contributor and the found of Kitchen Gardeners International, recently spoke at a TEDx conference about the power of gardening.
Dole, with 2009 net revenues of $6.8 billion, is the world's largest producer and marketer of high-quality fresh fruit and fresh vegetables, and is the leading producer of organic bananas and producer/shipper of organic pineapples.
Boulder Food Rescue is a non-profit what is helping to redefine food waste in America.
Although livestock guard dogs are the oldest and most traditional livestock guardians, Jan Dohner gives us a look at the other two livestock guardians – llamas and donkeys.
In Part One of this post, Jan Dohner explained how the different livestock guard dog breeds were developed and introduces us to their differences in style of work, temperament and other behaviors. In parts two and three, we take a brief look at some of the more common LGD breeds available in North America.
Cam and Michelle enjoy a visit to their neighbour's "sugar shack" during maple syrup season!
If you want a superior doughnut (or any product), start with the best.
Last December, the Quimby family paid $1,100 to heat and power their Winthrop, Maine, farmhouse for the month. Something had to be done. Jeld Wen, manufacturer of energy efficient doors and windows, came to the rescue.
The Coturnix Quail egg is very nutritious, has been in many civilizations as the treatment for many ailments, now it is back in our era as the only dietetic egg due to its amazing components.
Here are things to consider when choosing your cat or dog food.
Odyssey Day embarked from Washington D.C. a few weeks ago as a nationwide effort to encourage and promote the use of petroleum-free fuel. The day is sponsored by the Department of Energy's Clean Cities, which has helped reduce petroleum use by almost more than 2 billion gallons so far.
Following a disastrous investigation into the Energy Star program’s certification process, the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency are making major changes, including scrapping automated approval and requiring stricter lab results.
On Saturday, the G-20 will likely discuss trade policy that affects American farmers.
Get a materials list and step-by-step insructions for low tunnel construction for your backyard garden.
Take a seat on this comfy sofa you made yourself using recycled car seats.
Cam describes "double digging" as a way of creating a new garden without losing precious topsoil.
How to build a greenhouse of used sliding-glass patio doors that is warmer and less expensive than plastic, and keeps out burrowing animals.
Quail meat is making its comeback as there has been more of a demand due to the composition of the meat and exotic taste. Restaurants and grocery stores are supplying more quail meat to feed their consumers. There is a lack of producers, therefore education and encouragement is needed to increase the popularity further and meet the demands.
What needs doin' in the beeyard?
Shorter length and smaller kid friendly hand loop makes it easier for children to handle their four-legged friends
Read dozens of reports of reader's homesteading adventures.
Dogs can perform a variety of useful tasks on farms and rural properties, but can cause problems if they stray.
Great Pyrenees have a reputation as great livestock guardian dogs, but they also protect poultry. Read what two owners of Great Pyrenees have to say about the dogs’ innate ability to protect poultry and other livestock.
This rustic, resourcefully sustainable dog fence fits right into the landscape. Before you install a fence, look around your place first to see what's already available.
Cam describes the challenges of winter driving and cutting down trees.
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.
Today, resourceful homeowners are creating more space without moving walls. One innovative solution uses heavy-duty sliding door hardware to show how a vacation home benefits from more efficient floor space.
A Grade 1 group come through the farm for a tour
At breeding time, things aren't always what they seem. Sometimes things can really go awry!
Ben Davis, of Ben Does Life, has a truly inspirng weight loss story, but it's how message about how to be happy that is most motivational.
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!
Check out this magical photograph of an energy-efficient dome home and the surprise above.
Researchers from the University of Michigan have developed a way to “pressure cook” algae to produce biocrude. The process shows promise in the development of green fuels.
"Life", a Discovery Channel nature documentary series on unique animal behaviors, will air on Animal Planet beginning June 6.
Here are some ways to make real pizzeria style pizza, complete with homemade crust, a choice of toppings and cheese, and two ways to make your crust. Plus, when you want to go all out for a pizza oven, a Big Green Egg might be your answer.
This recipe is a great introduction to all the joys and possibilities the world of home made pizza represents.
Alternative transportation magazine, A To B, is chock-full of innovative bicycle tecnology reviews and test drives for everything from folding bikes to E-motorcycles and all the accessories in between.
We may find it overwhelming to know where to begin in teaching others to eat healthily. People attempting to eat healthier find it difficult to know where to begin. "The Dirty Dozen" fruits and vegetables gives us all a place to start.
A historic ice house on the LeDuc-Simmons Estate and a local ice harvest at Lake Rebecca demonstrate how ice and other perishables were kept cold in the hot summer months during the 19th century.
Adult dogs need a little help to compete with pups in the adoption game. A spa date with a groomer or in your own back yard can give that older shelter dog more than a shiny coat. It can open the door to a new life.
Horns or no horns, that is the question! Why should you disbud your goats, or is it okay to leave the horns on? This post discusses both options with a link to a great article about horns and their beauty.
Our third child arrived the night of July 30, 2012. After many weeks of waiting and 12 hours of labor that stalled, we welcomed our daughter Nathalia Christine earthside. This is Part One of our birth story.
Green & Black’s, an organic chocolate company, takes a two week trip to the Dominican Republic to dig an 11.5 km trench. The trench will supply water to their cocoa farmers, helping product the cocoa which makes Green & Black’s chocolate bars.
In this blog we explore making your own ricotta and kefir, with recipes!
I've been living in my tipi for almost a month now. Last night, under a chorus of screech owl trills and whinnies, I spent a little time reflecting on some things I've learned about this curious way of living. Enjoy.
If using a livestock guard dog is not the right decision for you or your farm, Jan Dohner takes an honest look at another option – the guard llama.
The Home Star Energy Retrofit Act of 2010, expected to pass this summer, offers rebates for windows, doors, skylights, window films and storm windows and doors.
Make your barn doors glide with skateboard wheels and other easy to find materials in this DIY project to create sliding barn doors.
Addition to our family and our homestead. Echo a GSD with a new chance at life in his furever home.
Why pre-1960 race cars were more efficient than post-1960 race cars, and thus a better example for high efficiency highway cars.
Are you one who can't get things done on time or follow up on promises? If so, you are probably an excuse maker. To get off the hook, you'll come up with a thousand reasons why you didn't get your work done. Read this blog and put an end to excuses.
Many of us hold convictions about others and the world around us that are so wrong that they seriously misguide us, even rob us of happiness and contentment. Don't believe everything you think. Question your beliefs and discover the truth.
Many snakes are actually helpful around the homestead because they hunt rats, mice and other small rodents. But if you have a snake problem, a terrier can help keep them under control.
Michael Morley has an exciting update on the house he's building in Lawrence, Kan. The dome is starting to go up!
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.
Our selection of a house, downsizing and getting the home built.
How we had to adjust to a smaller home, the isolation and quiet.
How our electronics save us space and provide even more room in a small home.
Drying food is a good way to eat local produce all year, and if you make this solar food dehydrator for yourself, you’ll be well on your way to delicious meals during colder months.
Make a homemade kaleidoscope that rivals the most expensive models with a PVC pipe and a reflector made from mirrors and wood. Point it at anything or use the special reflector tray to make unique kaleidoscopic designs.
Now’s the time to hit your farmers market or specialty grocery store for duck, goose, pheasant, quail or turkey eggs.
Despite killed well, production continues on The Frontier, an independent feature documentary that celebrates coastal Louisiana.
"Queen of the Sun: What Are the Bees Telling Us?" is a new bee documentary that examines the global bee crisis through the eyes of beekeepers, scientists, farmers and philosophers. The film emphasizes the thoughts of biodynamic and organic beekeepers on Colony Collapse Disorder and highlights the impact of industrial agriculture on the relationship between humans and bees.
In light of the environmental, economic and other damage caused by the Gulf oil spill, has your opinion about increased domestic drilling changed? Yes or no, we want to hear your thoughts on the topic.
South Dakota and Alaska electric cooperatives received the award for 2012 Wind Cooperatives of the Year.
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.
Global Greens Farm in West Des Moines, Iowa, helps refugees transition from growing food for their families to operating small businesses that sell produce at farmers markets, local grocery stores and to area restaurants.
This is a rundown of films that came out in the last few years. These films cover a wide range of environmental topics, from energy, climate, and fuel, to food, farming, and health. Many of the films have won awards or been critically acclaimed.
Read about new legislation that would stop the government from funding the fossil fuel industry. Then, sign your name to the petition and make a difference.
We no longer have to make what we need to get by day by day, but for many the desire lingers—and even surges as a strong cultural movement from time to time. Making and growing things yourself is a gentle rebellion against a mass-produced world.
From switching out light bulbs to bundling up your water heater, environmental journalist, Simran Sethi, shares some simple and stress-free tips on how to save energy in your home.
All of us farmers,large and small, are a big part of the engine that drives the economy
of rural communities, rural counties and rural states.This year, we are learning a lot about what happens when that engine sputters.
After months of waiting, worrying and hoping, the clouds finally arrived here at Yellabird Farm last week and brought us the long-sought gift of good rain. It was a great two days of slow and soaking moisture that the cracked soil guzzled up...
A scientists who has studied plant pathogens for more than 50 years warns that Roundup Ready crops could cause "a general collapse of our critical agricultural infrastructure."
Wondering where to vote or what's going to be on the ballot? Find answers to these and many other election questions (plus, a game!) with these resources.
Stony Knolls Farm has a new dog and getting him here was a wonderful, and amazing journey that is well worth sharing! Rescue dogs are so grateful for their new homes.
A beginning farmer loses a friend and finds that solitary farming isn't all it's cracked up to be.
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel shares her New Year's resolution for 2014: buying food directly from farmers.
Here's your opportunity to win a dough whisk from King Arthur Flour. This odd-looking contraption does a fantastic job of mixing together all kinds of dough.
Our winner of the KAF dough whisk is Dea Keen, and here is her pizza dough recipe.
The DOE and NREL released a study outlining ways to build grocery stories and medium-sized businesses that need 50 percent less energy.
A beginning farmer learns that keeping does and keeping bucks are two different things.
In partnership with the Department of Energy, Chevrolet offers free home charging stations to 4,400 owners of its newest electric car, the Volt.
Teaching a farm dog — a livestock guard dog — which animals to protect and which animals not to isn't an easy task. Learn about the protector/protectee animal relationships at Rancho Cappuccino, and about how the Rancho guard animals are taught to protect their charges.
Cam is mourning the loss of his beloved dog Morgan.
This picture will bring a smile to your face and make you think of your own family pet.
With a well-designed dog pack, you can take your dog to the farmer's market and your pet won't mind helping you carry a few groceries.
Manure-spreading day is a big event on the farm, for everyone from the chickens to the border collies. And it's part of a wonderful seasonal cycle that's the foundation of self-reliance and sustainability.
Tell us about your all-time favorite fix-it tool.
Building a pantry is a great way to store your groceries and home produce.
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!
Today as I was researching Habitat for Humanity, I learned how far its helping hand reaches. Even more interesting to me, though, was that Habitat continues to build in such war-torn counties as Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Three nuclear reactors in Japan have been destroyed by a 9.0 earthquake. Radiation levels are on the rise. The world watches helplessly, wondering if escaping radiation will eventually find its way to them. Are we not witnessing in Japan the dark side of nuclear energy? It is not that hard to see this happening in United States, is it?
Every once in a while we need to rebel against the machines. Hand a towel to your significant other and ask him to dry while you rinse. Sweep the floor with a real broomcorn broom. Have a real conversation. Enjoy things happening slowly.
To counteract life's stresses and strains, to slow down the pace of life, stop and smell the roses...or any flower. In the absence of flowers, you'll find another way to bring a smile to your face, the songs of birds.
Trying to interpret and understand scientific reports and their failure to come to a consensus.
Adult males and post-menopausal women are quite likely to suffer from health problems caused by excessively high levels of iron in the blood. Donating blood is the safest and most useful way to deal with this potential problem.
Cam describes some recent speaking engagements including the thrill of being "piped in."
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan Redick discovers a kindred soul in E. B. White when she reads the essay Memorandum, from his 1944 collection, 'One Man's Meat.'
Court ruling lifts the ban on sonar testing off the shore of California, much to the chagrin of environmentalists who have long blamed sonar technologies for deaths in aquatic life.
Empty nesters Ed and Joan Kobrinski downsized their lifestyle and moved to a smaller home where they could grow more vegetables. "We've learned to enjoy and appreciate living comfortably and contentedly with less," Ed says.
Sue McKay Miller divested herself of nearly everything she owned and moved into a yurt in the wilderness to determine how much she really needs to live a satisfying life. Turns out, she really doesn't need much.
Spring brings an abundance of arrivals and changes, from returning birds and newborn critters to budding plants and warming breezes. We want to know, what are you most looking forward to this spring?
April is National Garden Month! Learn about the benefits of building a garden and tips on how to create one even if you don’t have a big backyard.
This spring, try more interesting salads with spicy, crunchy, and colorful greens.
This delicious pasta uses the entire radish, including the nutritious greens.
It may not be Spring, but spring fever is in the air along with the need to dig in the dirt, plant seeds and eat fresh vegetables.
Roasted radishes are sweeter and less spicy than the radishes you might be used to.
These tart and tangy rhubarb pickles are easy to make and require no canning.
Try this recipe for biscuits with rhubarb sauce.
Who the heck is Paul Goodman? The car-free visionary who inspired a new documentary and bicycle contest.
Cam has had to learn lots of new skills living in his off-grid home!
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.
The right dog can be a very useful member of the family when you are growing corn!
Taking time to just have fun and enjoy life in the face of serious living.
As tick and flea season approaches, Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence won’t be dousing her dog, Rug, in flea medicine or attaching a flea collar because she knows that these can be harmful—both for Rug and for her. Flea collars often contain tetrachlorvinphos (TCVP) or propoxur, which can jeopardize Rug’s immune system and leave damaging lifelong effects.
Watch Dogs That Changed the World on PBS this Sunday to learn more about where or what your beloved pet came from.
Feel protected in this week’s Photo of the Week. Remember to submit your own pictures, and you could be the next Photo of the Week! Plus, learn more about guard dogs and Great Pyrenees dogs.
Homesteading with dogs in remote mountain living. Considerations in providing a good safe homestead environment for your cherished pets.
Coping with SARDS (sudden acquired retinal degeneration) in dogs and practical ways to help a blind dog.
Beware of what you use in your garden! Cocoa bean mulch may cause serious gastrointestinal problems for dogs, if eaten in large amounts.
Learn how to make a pinwheel for a fun, outdoors toy.
Handmade candies are always better than store-bought. If you're a fan of the peanut butter-and-chocolate combination, mix up these delicious little truffles.
Try these easy and unique homemade gifts--from your kitchen and from nature--for your loved ones this year.
Done with flimsy, store-bought tomato cages that fall over when the wind blows? Build long-lasting, heavy-duty tomato cages to fit your garden with one of our four plans.
Second in a series of blog posts about how to convert a lawn mower or other gasoline small engine to run on propane.
Build your own wood-fired earth oven for baking fluffier, more flavorful bread and other baked delights.
HOMEGROWN blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel outlines strategies for responsible drought gardening in her home state of California--or anywhere.
Rewarding volunteer efforts involving German Shepherd Rescue.
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
The babies have arrived, now is the time to take care of all of the other parts of caring for the newborns!
The kids have finally arrived, and we have plenty of photos of them!
Dragging my feet to get spring started, afraid to fail and making the decision to jump in an succeed or fail already!
For those of us who hate to use chemicals in our gardens, in our homes, or with our livestock and pets, diatomaceous earth may be a safe and efficient substitute. It may worm your animals, rid them of fleas and lice and even handle indoor pests.
Weather conditions impact spring migration – which migrants will you see this week?
We took advantage of the unseasonably warm weather by planting potatoes, peas and beets in the garden outside our office.
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.
This article describes an alternative roof design for those building in areas without building codes. A little extra effort working with poles will reward you with a stunningly beautiful wood ceiling and superinsulated roof at very reasonable cost.
In this blog, I highlight the earliest decisions I had to make to create a net zero energy home: how I was going to build the foundation and walls. Thermal bridging, air tightness, insulation, cost, and greeness are all key deciders.
Otterbine Barebo Inc. expands their Air Flo 2 diffused air system product line by releasing 2-dome and 1-dome diffuser manifold options to the original 4-dome option.
Live in a dome home in this week’s Photo of the Week. Remember to submit your own pictures, and you could be the next Photo of the Week!
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.
Governor Sarah Palin announced that the State of Alaska will sue against the decision to place beluga whales on the Endangered Species List.
The Bush administration is removing gray wolves from the Endangered Species List, but environmentalists think it could be a mistake.
Follow these simple guidelines to make the most of your small space: contain clutter, find furnishings do double-duty, and make maximum use of color and light.
HealthyCoat offers high quality and a highly digestible source of Omega 3 & 6 essential fatty acids, Vitamin E and Lecithin, fortified with Niacin, Biotin and Vitamin B12.
Tips on how to dispose of pet waste properly for National Dog Day!
Keep your pet safe by learning the dangers posed by certain flea- and tick-control products.
When you live in an off-grid house in the country, it's important to be handy!
With resources from Mother Nature, you can make natural and beautiful homegrown holiday gifts.
Kiko Denzer of Hand Print Press will present a workshop and demonstration on modern homesteading, do-it-yourself building with mud at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
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!
Steve Maxwell spotlights the three myths that prevent people from realizing the full value of the self reliant lifestyle, and how to dispel them
After the kidding is over, we take good care of our girls! And, the babies need to be bottle fed, so here are the instructions on how we feed our kids.
Just so you don't think it's all fun and games living out here in the country....
Spring tasks around the homestead.
Join a little piece of nature for dinner in this week’s Photo of the Week. Remember to submit your own pictures, and you could be the next Photo of the Week!
Tips on how to protect water quality with phosphate-free cleaning projects during spring cleaning.
Tips on how to construct a compost bin and what to include in them.
I cure my spring fever by planting in a hoop house.
The peaceful tranquility of farm life is often more or less controlled chaos, especially during the busy spring season!
Share your spring seasonal recipes for the month of April.
You'll love this recipe from William Woys Weaver for garlic scapes sauteed with tomatoes, white wine and sheep's milk cheese.
Learn how to buy, cook and preserve rhubarb.
Pre-spring work up for beehives coming out of winter.
This fresh spring soup is rich and creamy without the heaviness of cream.
The mild winter has led to an earlier than usual spring growing season and plenty of surprises in the way of plants making it through the winter that normally would never survive the cold season. Here's a peek at what's growing in my spring garden.
A tour of the gardens at Southern Exposure, where we're taking advantage of warm sunny days in February to get our gardens ready for intense planting ahead. But there's still plenty to sow, indoors and out.
In support of the Obama Administration's all-of-the-above energy strategy, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced Nov. 19, 2012, 10 small business-led projects to speed solar energy innovation from the lab to the marketplace.
How and why we chose to have a livestock guardian dog and what they are like.
Boy! Did I learn my lesson when I left our young pullets out back with our trusted dogs. I'll never do that again.
First in a series of blog posts which will cover conversion of lawnmowers and small engines from gasoline to propane.
Use old maps to wallpaper a room, shade a window, create a scrapbook, and other useful household crafts.
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
Don't throw away the Peeps left at the bottom of your Easter basket. They're the building blocks of many good projects.
Bill McKibben is doing a national tour to raise awareness about climate change and to build a movement around changing the way we use energy.
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.
Beat summer heat with this easy, do-it-yourself alternative to an expensive store-bought air conditioner!
I am especially concerned with the electricity hogs that keep us burning coal.
If you want to achieve your goals, stop making excuses for the things that go wrong on your path to success. Learn from them. Never stop trying to improve. And never stop trying. Work smart and hard.
Get out of your shell and lend a hand to those around you, even perfect strangers – you’ll be amazed at what you become and how your kindness touches others
Getting ready for the new garden season is full of anticipation and ideas!
To ensure we have a full productive garden, each spring I start a habit of carrying a packet of seeds in my pocket every time I head to the garden!
It's spring garden planting time! Here are a few things that can be planted while the ground is still cold and there is a nip in the air.
Todd Harne shares his "must-have" pieces of equipment to tackle his spring chores around the farm.
What a nice surprise it can be to notice new spring babies emerging from where their parent plants grew the year before. Volunteer plants are a wonderful gift!
Oh, the pleasure of growing and enjoying food that money can't buy. Fresh baby greens are just coming up. Pick some of those little leaves and enjoy this gourmet salad.
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Bryce Oates sings the praises of mixed-species perennial pastures for in-between seasons—even if they don't fully alleviate the need for watching and waiting.
Tips for limiting your exposure to pollen to help manage allergy symptoms.
So, you can't wait for the weather to warm up enough to get out and plant a few seeds in the ground? Well here is a list of gardening ideas and activities to keep you occupied and happy right up until the day that spring arrives!
Make a shelf or table into a growing space for starting seedlings.
How to measure tomato seedlings for success before planting into your garden.
A first look at the newest vegetable crops in the garden before the CSA harvests begin.
Get the most out of spring's cheap-but-healthy greens with this easy, nutrient-dense smoothie.
Taste spring sooner-- build yourself a cold frame!
Share your spring seasonal recipes for the month of May.
Want lettuce and carrots all year round? Ira Wallace tells us her simple simple method for keeping track of succession plantings.
Overview of the activities of a garden in March. How to prepare the soil for spring. What varieties I am planting this March in our Zone 6 garden.
The world of organic seed, delusional hope and insomniac online shopping collide.
What seeds to plant by month in a Zone 6, or Midwest, garden, plus seed-sowing times for spring and summer crops.
Homestead spring projects include honey bees, Dorking chickens, Ancona ducks, Narragansett turkeys, Dutch Belted calf, Red-Wattle hogs, the incubator, pruning fruit trees,starting seeds, and heirloom plants so we can eat healthful and delicious food all year.
The Obama Administration releases its plans for new renewable energy sources. Ken Salazar, Secretary of the Interior, explains that the new solar energy zones span six states and keep both domestic energy and environmental preservation in mind. If completed, the power generated from these solar energy zones would provide electricity to roughly seven-million homes.
Earth Days, a poignant, 2009 Sundance Film Fesitval success, will premier on Facebook April 11, and on the PBS Network April 19.
Wondering what delicious meals and snacks we’ll be serving up at the Fair? Wonder no more! See what food options will be offered by Seven Springs Mountain Resort and Fair exhibitors.
Find out if you won free tickets to the Seven Springs, Pa. Fair this weekend, and find out how you can still get a free ticket even if you didn't win!
Answer this Mother Earth News trivia question correctly for a chance to win 2 tickets to the Seven Springs, Pennsylvania Mother Earth News Fair, September 24-25, 2011.
Answer this Mother Earth News trivia question correctly for a chance to win two tickets to the Seven Springs, Pennsylvania Mother Earth News Fair, September 24-25, 2011.
Answer this Mother Earth News trivia question correctly for a chance to win two tickets to the Seven Springs, Pennsylvania Mother Earth News Fair.
The menus for the Seven Springs FAIR have been finalized!
Answer this trivia question for a chance to win 2 tickets to the Mother Earth News Fair in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania, Sept. 24-25, 2011.
Answer this trivia question for a chance to win two tickets to the Seven Springs, Pennsylvania Mother Earth News Fair!
Life really is good when you live on a dirt road.
Talking about carrying in the red roofing tin the old fashioned way due to a broken golf cart and some very muddy conditions. The refrigerator root cellar continues to prove itself as an experiment that seems to be working so far.
We all have dreams but why is it that some are so lucky that they come true?
Starting flats of seedlings begins this year's growing season.
Harvesting abundance in the early spring.
My grandmother taught me everything I need to know about keeping my house clean--without chemicals.
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!
If spring is giving you peas, it's best to eat them right away before their sugars degrade. Here's how to whip them up into a wonderful spring soup.
If fiddlehead ferns are popping up in your local market or local woods, grab them while you can. Incorporate this fabulous, fleeting spring treat into a fresh, slightly tangy pasta dish for Meatless Monday.
A year-long study in Oklahoma found that consumers who used energy-tracking technology and pricing plans that let them analyze their usage can cut their consumption in half.
A Precision Garden Seeder can make planting seed crops quick and easy!
Summer intern Megan describes her first time gardening at MOTHER EARTH NEWS, planting cucumbers for the first time and watering the office garden.
Ira Wallace inspires us to create flowering, native plant habitat in our gardens. Learn how to identify plants that are 'user-friendly' to the bugs that help keep our gardens healthy.
Growing the three sisters (corn, beans, squash) in the same plot of land actually helps yield healthier crops of each.
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.
Robin Bedford of Possum Hollow Farm Soap will present a workshop on soap making at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Veterinarian Anne Hallowell will present a workshop on hiking and packing with llamas at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustianability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
John Noska will present a workshop on solar passive tipis at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Doug Van Haitsma of the Mon Valley Initiative will present a workshop on micro farms at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
James Farmer of Earlham College will present two workshops about buying and selling local food at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
There’s never, ever been a better time to get involved with honey bees and beekeeping.
Change is not only possible, it’s inevitable. Within the next few decades, great change is coming, because the way things are done today literally cannot continue. America's use-it-up-and-move-on way of life is in its endgame.
Green living is similar to taking yoga. It is a ‘practice’ – the more you get into, the more there is to learn. It really comes down to three simple things. Are you ready, willing and able to start living green?
Jason Akers, The Self-Sufficient Gardener, taught kids of all ages the basics of gardening on Saturday and Sunday at the Fair.
Andrea Chesman of Storey Publishing will present three cooking workshops at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
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.
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.
A few years ago the ALBC launched its Heritage Chicken promotion; if you’d like to get involved, here’s what you need to know.
Meet Amelia, Honey, and Tilda — an Ameraucana, Buff Orpington, and Rhode Island Red, respectively. We keep our little flock of three in an Eglu, which has an egg-shaped hen house attached to a wire-enclosed run.
How lucky was I to find a pair of folks just as crazy about farming, working horses, working dogs, as I was? Us two women, practically Luddites in our past times, found each other because of an online publication of Barnheart at Mother Earth News.
Jason Akers, The Self-Sufficient Gardener, will present two workshops on gardening at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Sharon Greenspan of Wild Success will present three workshops on non-dairy cheesemaking and health at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Answer this Mother Earth News trivia question correctly for a chance to win two tickets to the September 24-25, 2011 Mother Earth News Fair in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania.
Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François will present a workshop on baking healthy bread at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Jerry DeWitt of the National Center of Appropriate Technology will present a workshop on the culture of sustainability at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Sherri Brooks Vinton, author of Put 'Em Up, will present two workshops on canning at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Ruth Rogers Clausen of Timber Press will present a workshop on how to cope with deer when gardening at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Answer this Mother Earth News trivia question correctly for a chance to win two tickets to the Seven Springs, Pennsylvania Mother Earth News Fair!
Answer this trivia question correctly for a chance to win two tickets to the Mother Earth News Fair in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania, September 24-25, 2011.
Joe Utasi of Cinci Home Solar will present a workshop on photovoltaic solar panels at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Robin Mather of Mother Earth News will present a workshop on local food legislation at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Gianaclis Caldwell of Pholia Farm Creamery will present two workshops on cheesemaking at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania.
Cole Ward of The Gourmet Butcher will present a butchering demonstration at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Pat Foreman of Good Earth Publications will present three workshops on chickens at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Anh Thu Hoang of Joy Bliss Raw will present a workshop on raw food at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Answer this Mother Earth News trivia question correctly for a chance to win 2 tickets to the Mother Earth News Fair in Seven Springs, Pa., September 24-25, 2011.
Harvey Ussery of The Modern Homestead will present three workshops on raising and gardening with chickens at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Kenneth Rust of Kasco Marine will present a workshop on practical pond management at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Linda Conroy of Moonwise Herbs and Brooms will present a workshop on bioregional herbalism at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Andrew Rumbold of Bucks County Freedom Fuel will present a workshop on making biodiesel at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Author Lisa Kivirist will present a workshop on organic eating on a budget at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Answer this Mother Earth News trivia question correctly for a chance to win two tickets to the Seven Springs, Pennsylvania Mother Earth News Fair, September 24-25, 2011.
Elsa Sanchez of Penn State University will present two workshops on compost and mulch at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
I don't know why, but somehow I think of myself as a lazy farmer. Perhaps it's because I know that I'm not a real farmer. Sure, we ate out of the garden all summer and I sold our excess produce at the farmer's market, but gardening is hardly farming.
Is there a more heartwarming and majestic sight than gorgeous old-fashioned cows in a peaceful grassy meadow, calves scampering by their sides? Awesome. But have you given much considered thought to exactly how those calves will come to be?
Like Thoreau and the Nearings, we feel more alive and participative in the natural world around us on our 5.5 acre homestead and organic farmstead than Lisa and I ever did walking through a corporate cubicle maze in the city.
If I could only pick one season extending structure, it would be a cold frame. Incredibly versatile, a simple cold frame is the key to taking your garden from a two or three-season plot and turning it into a year round vegetable factory.
Dive in, work with passion, and take all the other important elements of your life with you. Here are four reasons why such blending yields strategic sense.
We folded down the back seats in our Subaru wagon, lined the whole back area with a heavy tarp and a thick layer of straw, and headed down to Nash's Delta Farm to catch us some ducks.
Until we built a barn of our own and experienced the kindness of neighbors firsthand, I would have thought the notion of a barn raising to be a quaint relic of the past.
One thing we can all agree on is that is time for things to change. So perhaps we need to look at the world more like prey and less like predators.
Can a civilization this profoundly removed from the visceral participation in farming and food even survive? Can the assumptions, like cheap energy, cheap grain, and processed food that can be nutritious, really continue into the future?
I grew up with bobolinks. All my life they have nested on our farm, but the bobolinks are in serious trouble, especially in the Northeast, largely on account of changes in agricultural practices.
A MOTHER EARTH NEWS editor gets a chance to spend her birthday at the fair, surrounded by fun and inspiring people and activities.
Why do we believe that math must be done one workbook page at a time, at the kitchen table? Anyone who’s ever kept chickens can tell you all the math that can be found in the hen house.
The thing about self-sufficiency, working with nature, making delicious food: There’s always something new to learn.
Booths are now available for the Washington FAIR, June 1-2, 2013 and the Pennsylvania FAIR, Sept. 20-22, 2013. Check out what discounts are available for ordering early.
‘Pluck A Lotta Chickens: A Live Demonstration’ was in the Timberstone Room, which holds several hundred people. I sat second row, center. Once they started the process, it wasn’t nearly as bizarre as I thought it was going to be.
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.
We do a lot of things on our farm, but the primary way we earn a livelihood is selling wholesale potted herbs and heritage food plants to garden centers throughout Colorado and northern New Mexico.
Solar expert Joe Utasi hopes to have his home solar panel installation complete and running, and will have lots of pictures to show and discuss by the time the Seven Springs Fair arrives.
Dan Adams of Earthineer will present a workshop on building an electric car at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Author John Ivanko will present a workshop on residential renewable energy at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Candy DeBerry, Ph.D. of Washington & Jefferson College will present a workshop on pollination at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Frances Moore Lappé of the Small Planet Institute will present a workshop on positive environmentalism at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania.
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.
Alison Martin of the American Livestock Breeds Association will present a workshop on heritage breed cattle at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Ken Roseboro of The Organic & Non-GMO Report will present a workshop about genetically modified foods at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Nathan Kipnis of Kipnis Architecture + Planning will present two workshops on green energy and building at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25 in Seven Springs, Pa.
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.
Heather Houlahan of Brandywine Farm will present a workshop on choosing and training farm dogs at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, Sept. 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Tammi Hartung of Desert Canyon Farm will present three workshops on growing and using herbs at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival. September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Jeannette Beranger of the American Livestock Breeds Association will present two workshops on heritage breed pigs and chickens at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Caleb and Christian seize the opportunity of driving cross country in a 2013 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid Prototype from the Flight 93 Memorial to Lawrence, Kansas.
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.
Combine two of this hopeful season's symbols--herbs and eggs--in this simple project that celebrates spring.
Sauteed spring greens and mushrooms dress up polenta in this nutritious, satisfying main dish.
Thoreau, Rachel Carson, Bill McKibbon, Terry Tempest Williams. Do you have a favorite nature or environmental writer? A book or story you can get lost in, that inspires you to action, or simply reminds you of how incredible nature is? Post a comment to share the titles that invite you into the wonder of the natural world — or have maybe even changed your life.
BPA levels in families who ate fresh rather than canned and packaged food dropped by 60 percent, a study found. Cooking at home with fresh food is the best way to avoid this potentially dangerous chemical
OK,I'm giving no hints as to why you should think like a chemist...Read it and see for yourself. At the very least, you'll be entertained by a crazy new way of thinking about life.
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?
In my 7,500-plus mile adventure in MAX this summer, one lesson really stands out: Haste Makes Waste.
Thanks to all the volunteers of the 2011 MOTHER EARTH NEWS Fair in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania. We couldn't have done it without all your hard work!
Why raise chickens? Because they’re the pet that makes you breakfast.
What I like about MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIRS is that they encourage an active, participatory human presence in nature. Too many environmentalists think that human activity or presence is incompatible with environmentalism.
Diane Ott Whealy of Seed Savers Exchange and Jackie Cleary Dietrich of Auburn Meadow Farm will present workshops on gardening and farming at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, Sept. 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
My husband Alan’s first gift to me was Helen and Scott Nearing’s Living the Good Life. The books we turn to regularly have changed, although some we go back to again and again, year after year. A list of our top 10 favorite books follows.
When I bought my farm, I did it to live in the woods. I would like to say I was deliberate. And intentional. But clueless is probably a better word. I should have suspected something when I bought the land and they threw the house in for free.
A horse trainer once said to me, 'Animals don't think, they just make associations.' I responded to that by saying, 'If making associations is not thinking, then I would have to conclude that I do not think.'
Nobody can resist fluffy baby chicks, so what would be better than hatching your own? Let us put your mind at rest and make your first time incubating an enjoyable experience you will want to repeat.
Cooking is great improvisation and I think that’s what I like most about it. You can say the word, “burger,” to any cook and be surprised by every interpretation that you get.
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?
Heritage breeds are survivors, although some may be in for a very challenging year. The national drought is about to have a huge impact on the American economy and now is the time to plan ahead.
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.
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.
Deborah Niemann of Antiquity Oaks will present two workshops on traditional home dairies and homegrown food at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Jennifer R. Bartley of American Potager will present a workshop on cooking with herbs and vegetables from a kitchen garden at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
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.
A surprising benefit of MAX's streamlining is the increased luggage space.
Eating cicadas, building a porch, and hauling lumber for said porch all in the same week with several images of the action as well as some bee installation pictures.
OK, you’ve got a start: where to get equipment, groups to join, classes to take, and mentors to hook up with. Now’s the time, before you have bees, to take a long hard look at some of the rest of the things you need to be thinking about.
Locally grown, homemade, grass-fed, free-range and downright delicious food invades the 2011 MOTHER EARTH NEWS Fair in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania.
Andrea Chesman, author of Recipes from the Root Cellar, shares one of her favorite winter vegetable recipes.
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.
We're getting revved up for winter seed swaps, and planning our tomato plantings to account for all the great tasting events next summer and fall. Find out how to find your own local events, or host your own!