Sherri Lynn

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since Feb 19, 2014
Piedmont, NC
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Recent posts by Sherri Lynn

Ok, so now this got me to thinking that I am no longer using the word "weeds.". . .

My favorite "gifted" plant is probably plantain, as I love it's healing properties, make plantain/comfrey salve and use it on my family as well as the cow's teats after milking. . .I love the wild persimmons for us and our chickens.  I want to learn more about may apples.  I am trying to naturalize some mushrooms so I guess I am going backwards.  Lol
2 weeks ago
As I get older?   Let's see, this year I will be turning 60 and I am just learning how to milk our Jersey cow who just had a calf.   For the basement, I figure I will just walk out the front door and walk down the slope (or up the slope) to and from the basement and avoid the stairs altogether.  I just plan to keep working, keep learning to keep my brain functioning, try to get to the point where we are eating 99% from what we grow (avoiding all those chemicals, corn and petroleum they are putting in food.)  I just plan to get even healthier. . .Life is so good.
2 weeks ago
It didn't take much.  Here I am living in a rural area and they can't stop talking about the fact that I invited them over for "tea" and it was made out of the mint that I was growing. . .Crazy, crazy.  
2 weeks ago
Yes, those are the books.  I personally love them.

A fun fact is the guy who started the 12 x 12 neighborhood was actually my permaculture teacher.

2 months ago
I just wanted to add that I LOVE my squeezo (bought from ebay).  It is so much better (easier and faster) than a food mill.  So far I have used it to make blackberry jelly, juice fruits for wine making, juiced watermelon at the end of the season rather than letting them go bad (put in freezer bags and made ice cubes for drinks - recently thawed some and warmed it as a drink - yum), and made tomato juice.  There are different sized strainer tubes that do different things, but so far we have accomplished much with the same strainer tube.

I also love my apple peeler/corer/slicer.  We have used it on apples, potatoes and pears.  For the apple, we use it before making applesauce.  Then the cores and peeling have made apple cider vinegar or fed pigs.  For potatoes, I just rotate the corer down and use it for peeling.  For pears we core and peel them and then make a knife cut down the whole pear which creates great slices for dehydrating.

When we had a cherry tree that was producing huge amount of cherries, we really enjoyed our cherry pitter (much faster than our paper clip used to be).

Currently, we are really enjoying our smokehouse with an offset firebox for cold smoking.  Yum!
2 months ago
Since she reads, two fun books I have been recommending to teenagers for years are 12 x 12 and possum living.

My daughter started college when she was 16 (graduated early from high school).  After a year she was disgusted and came home in despair and said, "I hate college."  I said, "Well you don't have to go to college."  She said, "I don't?"  I said, "No, you only have to have a way to sustain yourself.  There are other ways."  So I started reading 12 x 12 with her.  She was with me until I got to the part where the toilet was a bucket outside.  She thought about that for a while and went back to college and graduated.  I had no idea which way she would go, as I was fully prepared to help her build her own tiny home.

Fast forward to today and she is 25 years old, married with one child and due any day with her second and she is asking us for information on how to be sustainable. . .
2 months ago
So I think we are missing the point somewhat or leaving out the most important.  The best conclusion for a life is that it was a happy one.  Permaculture is so nice because it teaches you in a short course what would take a long time to observe from nature.  Part of that teaching is that if you really want something, then figure out a way to get it without making someone else buy it for you.  Part of that teaching is that more money will not necessarily buy you more happiness.  This morning I woke up thinking of how something positive can come out of all this.  We should get together with our local people (neighbors), and our small towns (community).  We should realize that we all have strengths that we should contribute to help, but that we should ALL contribute.  This would make us all happy and fulfilled.  No need to fight each other or to watch so many bad examples.  For some of us, we already have great communities that is made more interesting by different colors and ethnicities, but we are watching what is happening afar and applying it to our great community.  We should all slow down a minute, shut off the electricity, and realize that the treasure can be in our own backyard.  There will always be a few bad apples to exclude from that circle.  If they are excluded much, perhaps they will change their mind, move, or just keep their own company.
The short answer is gas.  It is hard to support 220 appliances on solar.  However, with the right system, limited use of a toaster oven has been achieved on solar.
10 months ago
I would like to build a shed with a green roof about 8 feet wide and 6 feet deep.  I would like for it to look like a hobbit house.  I have thought about using a trampoline frame for the outside walls with support under as well as beams spanning the 6 foot depths.  I am not planning to put in soil that is too deep and am not opposed to using a lighter weight growing medium.  Given those parameters, what support do I need for the weight of the green roof?  The picture is just one I found on the web, and I would prefer for the green roof to extend over the top.  Of course, I would like to upcycle materials that I could find cheaply.
11 months ago
This is a great example of a thread that while it has been around for a while, it is so very valuable and timeless. . .

I am growing those things that I cannot do without (instead of growing suggested spices that I never use).  Some time back, I quit using black pepper in favor of the cayenne pepper that we grow and dry for our own use.  It has that peppery taste, it is red (much more attractive in foods since it doesn't look like bugs), and it actually tastes better than black pepper to me.  I like knowing that it was grown without chemicals, and I like being able to save my seeds from year to year.  We also enjoy the medicinal value of it and use it liberally in our dog food to keep fleas at bay.  Additionally, I have a strong belief that when we grow things locally, it really helps us in our environment.

Oregano is easy to grow (perennial here), tastes great, and has some great anti-bacterial properties so we use it in deodorant, as well as first aid spray for our animals (the same bottle.)  Of course, it is also a main feature in our spaghetti/pizza sauce.

We grow a couple of different kinds of mint (just because it fell into our laps).  We grow it around the foundation of our house to repel rodents, I make mint extract for food flavorings (ground mint with vodka), we make tea with it for upset stomachs, we love mixing it with chocolate dishes in the summer especially (mint chocolate milk shakes - yum), and I use solar distillations to make the essential oils to add to my soaps.

Fennel is also something we love to grow.  I love the flavor in Italian dishes, with sausage, and in tea for soothing and calming.  It grows so easily.  I think once you start growing it, it will continue on with self-sowing.

Basil is a staple around here.  Not only do I make pesto, but I dry it for sprinkling in egg and potato dishes in addition to Italian pastas.  

We grow our own garlic and put it in oil for many, many dishes.

We use green onions constantly as well as bulb onions.  We are quite successful with the green ones and are awaiting success with the bulb onions.  I think I use at least a half onion daily.  We are still buying them, though, as we can't keep up.

We grow lemon balm and have used it to attract bee swarms, but have yet to use it for lemon extract for foods.  I look forward to exploring this.

We are just now experimenting with saffron, turmeric, and ginger.  As we live in zone 7, turmeric and ginger are iffy.  However, I planted them in an old horse trough we got for free because the bottom was rusted out.  I put ginger in half and turmeric in the other half.  I had read that if I mulched them, them would hang around, and I surmised that the horse trough would be excellent for holding in the leaves.  Ask me later on this.  If they come back out in the Spring, it was a success. These were bought at an organic grocery store in the produce section. . . Our harvest from the saffron was quite miniscule especially after drying.  We shall see. . .

We are growing Lindera Benzoin, as I was looking for a spice that could replace cinnamon.  I actually bought the trees/bushes? from a native plant nursery in our area.  I had read that you needed a male and female for the berries.  This last year, berries showed up but I only got 6 of them that are now dried and in the freezer.  Can't wait to try them, but it seemed like such a small amount. . . .I am thrilled to find out that I could get berries though.  Allspice seems a mixture of all the spices I like to combine with cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.  However, I am thrilled to find the bark of the Carolina Allspice or Sweet Shrub. I also can't wait to try the pods of the honey locust for chocolate.  In my experience - it seems that the roasting is what gives things their chocolate flavor - I have tried roasted dandelion roots as well as coffee beans for coffee.  The amount of roasting is key.

I found this article by looking for vanilla substitutes, as I currently buy vanilla beans and mix them with vodka.  I can't wait to try the sweet flag we already have planted around our pond, or our almond trees for almond extract, should they finally bring nuts  (probably 2 - 4 years old since one was replaced.)  

I read a book once that when someone was asked what they planted they said well, I looked at what I was eating, and if I liked it , I planted it.  That really resonated with me.  Thanks so much for all of this info.
2 years ago