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Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup sugar for simple syrup
  • Ice cubes
  • 1 2/3 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons julienned mint, plus leaves for garnish
  • 1 lemon, sliced 1/4-inch thick, plus more for garnish

Directionsmintand lemonjuice

  1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar and 1/4 cup water. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat. Let stand until completely cool.

  2. In a large pitcher half-filled with ice, add 2 cups water, lemon juice, simple syrup, mint, and lemon slices. Stir to combine. Serve over ice. Garnish with mint leaves and lemon slices.


 

 

Quite a dry winter with almost no rain in the last few weeks. A couple extra guests on Ramblers I had to make a decision and focus on sealing and renovating the water reservoir next to the workshop. With an extra two hands this took just over 2 days to complete. The following week I will be pumping water from a natural spring about 1km away to fill my reservoir and a couple rain tanks. Problem solved. I hope.

Below is a makeshift water filter using a 2 litre milk bottle, 32mm PVC pipe, a clamp, filled with shade netting and LECA to filter the water as naturally as possible.

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Manage to catch the first leaf that fell onto the shade netting. The system is working!!!!

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I used a central treated old dropper to keep things stable. Added 2 x 5 metres treated pine poles and inbetween used some nylon rope that will keep the shade netting securely down with the high winds that come from the valley. Its had no problems for 3 days. Things are looking good.

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The dogs playing around while I was completing the days work.

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After reading a post on facebook.com about household water tasting like chlorine due to a friends poor husband maybe having a  heavy hand on the bottle. Below is a picture of our main water resource the Kowie River, it supplies local towns with majority of its water until the new Amatola Water Project kicks in the next 5 years. Water from the Fish river, and major boreholes will be piped the whole way down the  eastern coast (150km ) to hopefully solve the water crisis in the area.

With only a small percentage of  our total water being drinkable water, its a very delicate natural resource. We catch every raindrop possible since we only run on rain water, and water stands for a month or two without being used in large 2500, 5000 litre tanks. Drinking water is filtered through a homemade system to remove larger particles from dust to rust. i do try and boil water, but I have survived quite fine on rain water for 9 months now.

i started looking at ways to purify the water being stored for later use and found a couple good tips about bleaching  your water that stands.

1 – Always allow long standing pipes/taps to drain for atleast 30 seconds before drinking from it.
2- 20 litres of water can be purified using ordinary household bleach ( 1 teaspoon ). Purify 5000 litres with about 200 ml of bleach.  It should smell of chlorine after adding the bleach, if it does not repeat the process. the smell should go away after a few days.
3- Store water in the dark, it prevents bacteria and germs growing.
4 – Bleach effectively kills bacteria and viruses, stops smells and then breaks down. It’s effective germ killing alkaline property is completely neutralized very quickly.

 Sodium hypochlorite solution, referred to as ” common household chlorine bleach”, is not a seriously poisonous substance to humans. It is an alkaline salt. It is not an “acid”.  However It very, very effectively kills bacteria and viruses upon contact. It is the world-wide chemical of choice for treating drinking water, or for effectively sterilizing everything from shower stalls to surgical instruments. Truthfully, very heavily chlorinated water may be more irritating to the lungs – if it is used for showers, than it is harmful to the intestinal tract if used for drinking purposes. Even drinking straight household bleach rarely results in death. The alkaline properties of undiluted bleach may cause painful chemical burns to the esophagus and stomach – but it is not deadly poisonous. Bleach must always be kept out of the reach of children – because not only might they drink it – they may get it in their eyes. Sauce

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In times of recession, and expensive taxes by governments to fund their travel trips, parties and houses its always good to know how we can save money and use our resources to make more.

Ramblers RestWater – Try and catch your rainwater and use in that your garden. It’s far better to use your rainwater than municipal supplied water with high amounts of chemicals, that can potentially damage your plants and your health. Also start reusing your grey water from baths, kitchen sinks and basins. As a previous article suggests, you can save up to 40% off your water bill. We are already using our grey water at Ramblers Rest. Just one note is to make sure you don’t use harmful chemicals in your water. Organic shampoo’s, soaps can be beneficial to the plants.

Soil – start composting, it’s a the best way to use your kitchen scraps, garden refuse, lawn clippings. Compost is important for your soil and provides much-needed aeration to your soil, acts as a mulch, and recreates a micro climate for little organisms to work their magic. Mulching is important and you can use animal droppings, shredded newspapers, old cardboard boxes, pine cones and retted lawn clippings to provide mulch.

Seeds – With doggie companies out there that run under multiple aliases, that sell genetically modified seeds ( Monsanto ) , now is a good time to start looking at seeds. Start saving your seeds, storing them in waterproof containers. They should be good on a shelf for five years or more. Also to propagate your seeds, use old egg cartons, empty tins. I also started cutting up old milk cartons to use as pegs with black marker to label y seedlings. It’s great to reuse and saves you trips to the dump.

Garden nutrients – Besides compost, there are other great cheap fertilizers available. Crushed egg shells add calcium to the soil and improve compacted soil. If you live near a racetrack/fairgrounds/riding stable, you can get free horse manure if you are willing to haul it away. Epsom salt is made up of magnesium and sulfate – both vital plant nutrients. Dissolve some Epsom salt with water and use it on magnesium-loving houseplants, roses, peppers, tomatoes and potatoes. Dry out your leftover coffee grounds and sprinkle them around the base of your acid-loving plants, such as azaleas, roses, rhododendrons and blueberries. Coffee grounds are rich in nitrogen, magnesium and potassium, and since they are acidic, they help maintain the soil’s acidity.

Weed Killers – pulling weeds by hand is much easier after a rain shower, you want to pull it out at the roots. Using a product called Roundup is possibly the worst thing you can ever do ever. Try not use anything produced by this company Monsanto, its expensive and taking its toll on our food production and soil quality. Mix some vinegar with kitchen soap and spray on weeds. The soap helps with getting vinegar to stick the leaves, and the acetic acid from the vinegar removes moisture from the weeds. To help with aphids, mites etc, you can make a simple organic repellent using kitchen soap, bioneem oil, cayenne peppers, crushed garlic, shake your bottle and spray on your plants.

I wrote this article and used content from another blog by Tara McAlistar from this website.

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