Logan Streondj

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since Nov 02, 2010
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Recent posts by Logan Streondj

2 week update, got some big leaves now, and kale has true leaves.
One week update, beets growing well and have a new leaf.

The kale has also sprouted.
Day 3 update:

Had a fungus issue with my peat pellets when I checked on them this morning, lots of thin strands between them all,
So I took off the cover and put it under the grow light which has UV as I mentioned.

After a few hours the fungal growth was gone and UV should have killed off any spores also.
Also can see in the picture the beet greens  are getting bigger.

Images should be attached.
Hi all,

Had a great year full of fresh produce from the forest garden,
now it's snowing but we still want to get fresh greens,
and something more cost effective than paying $3 per head of kale.

I did a bunch of research and decided to put together something really cheap,
so as to minimize the initial outlay of fund.
This way we only need to grow equivalent to about 16 heads of lettuce, kale or chard to break even.

To make this super easy so you can start seeing results pretty much immediately I started with a beet,
because the beet greens are edible, they are closely related to chard.

Here is the video, currently on day two, already having leaves:

Hi Lichen Lovers,

Just wanted to mention to all those who like edible forest gardens, that many lichens are edible also.
The only thing to watch out for is to avoid all yellow, or yellowy (orange) species,
as they may contain poisonous levels of vulpinic acid or usnic acid (both of which are yellow)[1].

Safe ones:
for rocks are rock tripe (which is black), Parmotrema perlatum )whic
for ground iceland moss
and reindeer moss (which is white) though note if it gets much sun exposure it accumulated usnic acid.
for trees Wila (brown versions) mostly in humid mountains,
also likely any white/green/black lichens should be fine also.

generally since they are so slow growing they are a delicacy,
but still if you manage to grow a large amount it can become a regular spice.
For most of them it seems best to cook in order to make it easier to absorb,
so as a spice to add to raw ingredients of soups, stir fries and other cooked dishes.

Another thing to note is that the environment affects all plants/lichen,
so even if it is a suitable color but growing in a toxic environment,
or on a poisonous tree (yew) then it would be best to avoid it.

Lichen is also a good pollution indicator[2]:

Lecanora conizaeoides typically looks like green pots filled with yellow,
it can grow in very high pollution environments. I'd avoid eating them.

Lepraria incana looks overall pale green and fuzzy,
it can grow with high pollution.

Hypogymnia physodes and/or Parmelia saxatilis or P. sulcata are pale green with branching "leaves",
these can grow in moderate pollution, and would probably be the first level safe to eat.

Usnea ceratina a green hair like lichen appears in fairly low pollution environments,
these hair-like ones are likely as good as Wila to eat, and increase the growing area by extending outwards,
so if you can, certainly do grow them.

As a final note, I think there can be a time and a place for yellow lichen,
such as places which you don't want animals to eat, or don't want yourself to accidentally consume.
One idea for it is around the trunks of young saplings, as an alternative to other winter protection schemes.
Another would be to grow in known toxic areas, such as where there were chemical spills.
it is similar to the yellow of caution tape, but longer term and self-renewing.

[1] Lichens for food https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnolichenology#Lichens_for_food
[2] Lichens for air quality http://www.air-quality.org.uk/19.php
2 years ago
Yes, yogurt is best done in an anaerobic environment to promote the bifidobacter and lactobacillus which don't like air.
Kombucha has to be done at least partially in air because the yeasts that make the scoby thicker require air.
Though the second anaerobic step helps boost the beneficial bacteria.
5 years ago
ya I read some studies that fermentation can produce urethane which is a carcinogen.
well since then I've significantly reduced my fermenting, and even closed down my business.
Nowdays I stick to only probiotics, natto and bread, out of fermented products.

Though the adzuki for instance can still sprout that.
And if you leave wild-rice in water for a day or two,
then it soaks and drastically reduces cooking time.
It's a milder form of fermentation but still works.

I prefer dehydrated foods for the winter now,
especially since we are moving onto a boat,
where there wont be much room for jars of liquid.
5 years ago
I became a vegan for health and sustainability reasons, and so maximize my health as much as possible by having a complete diet, with lots of vegetables, grains, fruits, legumes, and seeds, only using fish for what simply isn't available in vegan form easily.
While mostly vegan, though really ento-pesco-vegan, with my non-vegan food being wild salmon, for the vit D, B12, EPA and DHA, which is more natural than taking supplements for all those.

I think it's easier to catch and can salmon for a year, than to grow a bunch of exotic microbes in large vats, and process them. Only other sustainable source of B12 and EPA I know if is insects, so I eat those when they are handy and sustained by my life (i.e. mosquitoes, fruit flies, ants).

Otherwise I'm a big supporter of nature. I like what the previous poster was saying about how releasing domesticated animals into the wild en mass may not be the best idea. I say en mass, cause in small quantities they would simply become food for the forest, and in that case it's not really bad for the environment, but if there are overwhelming numbers it could. Though in terms of releasing single or small amounts of animals unlikely to offset the balance I think is okay, as for instance I would prefer to be let loose, than put down in a pound. Though I'm not really sure what kind of environment dogs could be released into that they wouldn't offset, it would have to be rife with wolves, bears and other predators.
Wolves and coyotes are more organized then dogs, but dogs can reproduce faster.

I am an ethical vegan, so far as, I don't want to eat the produce of tortured or sad animals, since I become what I eat, and would rather not have that.
For wilderness releases I'm not as devastated by the death of any particular host-body as I believe in reincarnation, generally I'd prefer to die than be a slave/prisoner.
Since I'm also a follower of hermetic "as above, so below" since I prefer to keep my reproductive organs intact I allow our pets to keep theirs also -- admittedly we have 2 female cats, and 2 female rabbits, so reproduction isn't really an issue.
But if it was an issue for instance in a wilderness setting, I believe in the food-web, so would simply accommodate more predator habitat, such as hibernacula for snakes, and nesting sites for predatory birds who would be able to keep populations in balance. Yes when they are yours it's sad when they die, but if they have living children they live on in a way, perhaps they'll reincarnate again, in their children's children to be with you.

Personally I think we're overly attached to domesticated animals and livestock, considering the burden on the ecology through polluting waste, resource consumption, and reduction in diversity. Also the quality of the meat is generally lower due to having monotonous food sources. Wild is really the best, and to maximize that we should restore the ecosystem of the planet, by using forest gardens, permaculture, agroecology and the like, which would allow for a large diversity of plants and animals, some of which could be sustainable food sources.

Though it is true that humanity, and north americans in particular have much obsession with animal and particularly mammal meat, for protein they like to claim, but truth is insects are a much better source of protein, have much lower feed to protein conversion ratio, while also having beneficial fatty acids such as EPA. Of course as for other food sources I think it would be better to simply have wild insects.

When I say wild, I don't quite mean "fully wild" in terms of conservation area wild, but kind of like where they don't necessarily know you're their "owner" you simply provide habitats and food for them, and then harvest them on an as needed basis. I believe in the give-take relationship with nature, I don't believe we should simply take from the wild, as that is unsustainable, we have to give at least as much benefit as we receive, through providing nutrients to the soil, organizing diverse foraging opportunities with agroecology, and providing habitat for the residents.

5 years ago

Fortunately, the experimenting I have done for myself (and many other die-hard paleo converts would say the same) proves that I feel incredible when I eat coconut oil, pastured butter/cream, raw milk, and eggs, and crappy when I skip them.

Coconut oil has the most beneficial saturated fat lauric acid,
wheras the others have palmitic acid, similar to trans fatty acids aren't so good,
though eggs at least 2 eggs a day is advisable due to lecithin content, if not using alternatives i.e. sunflower lecithin.

Maybe I will die at 85 instead of 87, but I have healed lifelong chronic disease, upped my energy level, toned my body, lost belly fat, cleared up my skin, and de-fogged my brain, so I am going to keep doing what's working, even if a poorly designed study tells me not to.

Oh I'm sure if you've stopped eating the SAD diet you've improved your life, it's very easy to improve from a fast food diet.
That's not to say there is no way of improving further.

And last time I checked, aren't those "nutrition guidelines" created by the same government that subsidizes monoculture and hires Monsanto employees to head the FDA? No thanks.

"the government" isn't really a singular entity, nor is there only a single government that has nutrition guidelines.

If you check, the vast majority of guidelines around the world, promote having vegetables and fruits as the largest category, followed by grains, only then followed by meat&alternatives, dairy&alternatives and other.

Admitedly governments are influenced by lobbiest from the meat, dairy, and grains they subsidize, in terms of Non-government recomendations.

"The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine uses the Power Plate, which promotes a vegan diet and is divided into equal parts fruit, grains, legumes and vegetables." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_nutrition_guides#Other_guides
5 years ago
Fermentation can be done in a variety of ways,
though generally at least for food purposes we'd like probiotic bacteria,
such as bifidobacteria and lactobacillus that are very beneficial to humans.
I've done a lot of fermentation, and have a small business doing fermentation, so do lots of research on it.
Vegan icecream yogurt recipe at the end!

Anyways enough intro, bifidobacteria, lactobacillus are anaerobes meaning they don't like oxygen, at most tolerating it.
wheras some detrimental bacteria such as candida yeasts and chronic-fatigue enterococci can use oxygen,
so the presence of oxygen in the brew or gut favours the "bad bacteria".

Bifidobacteria (good bacteria) is partciularly sensitive to oxygen so it's good to not only air-seal the brew,
but also to absorb the oxygen within the brew by adding antioxidants in the fermenting medium.
Studies have shown that using powerful antioxidants like EGCG in green tea http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22727242 especially potent from matcha green tea which is powdered form with ORAC over 1300 micromol per gram (compare to blueberries, just over 90 micromol per gram).
Since I'm big on permaculture I'm always wondering what a good temperate alternative is, and found that north american Staghorn Sumac is even more potent antioxidant with ORAC of over 1500 micromol per gram http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23411251
So I'm going to be harvesting staghorn sumac this year for sure to use in my brews,
Matcha tea is relatively expensive by comparison it is 10-15 cents a gram and has caffeine.

Omega-3's have also been shown to improve the viability of bifidobacteria, and how well it can adhere to intestinal walls,
so if you have a ferment that allows it like sourdough, or fermented beans can add some flax or chia seeds/oil to improve them.

Some people promote "open air" or aerobic fermentation though I believe that's generally a bad idea, since it simply allows yeasts molds and other aerobic contaminants to take root. Often the argument is that allowing the ferment to access the air is necessary to access the wild yeasts and bacteria, but truth is assuming the components of the brew haven't been sterilized they already have wild microorganisms. Also you don't really know what wild microorganisms are on it, and if they are even beneficial, so it's a good idea to at least have a base of ferments with microorganisms you know are beneficial.

I've acquired bifidobacteria strains, sold as babyFlora at the the real canadian superstore, though surely can be found in other places also.
I use it as a starter for my ferments, though have a variety of other strains I add depending on what I'm fermenting, like sourdough I add propionobacterium freudcherii for B12, and for yogurt can add in a probiotic capsule of lactobacillus.

I'm pesco-vegan so make vegan yogurt/ice cream, nowadays I use 1 cup adzuki-beans (high orac) and 1/4cup flax seed (possibly also 1/4cup pepitas or peanuts), anaerobically fermented for a day or two, then pressure cooked, manually food processed, add a can 400ml of coconut milk with 1/2 cup sugar, a gram of matcha and tablespoon sunflower lecithin as emulsifier, then anaerobically ferment (with bifidobacter etc) for several hours in a sealed masonry jar, refrigerate and viola! you have yogurt, can freeze with stiring every half hour for several hours for icecream.
Careful as the fermentation does expand the yogurt, makes 1Lt unfermented and 1.5Lt or more fermented, depending on time and temperature.

5 years ago