Monday, June 14, 2010

14 June 1956 “Safe Pest Control and Rustic Holidays?”

Today that little curser is pulsating back at me. The blank ‘page’, well screen, just keeps returning my stare. It is not filling up with little words and phrases as it is usually want to do when I sit at it. There are so many things I have discussed with myself to write about here and then just let it go. Not sure why, really.
It could be the rain ( I can’t remember the last sunny day?). It could be my growing list of items to work on this summer to prepare for fall. It could be the Garden ( I know have a pest problem attacking my grapes and my new green bean shoots) Perhaps I will share of the ‘homemade’ bug sprays I am going to try. I will let you know how they work. Here are some of them:
Try herbal sprays against any leaf-eating pests and make note of what works for future reference.

  • How to Make: In General, herbal sprays are made by mashing or blending 1 to 2 cups of fresh leaves with 2 to 4 cups of water and leaving them to soak overnight. Or you can make a herbal tea by pouring the same amount of boiling water over 2 to 4 cups fresh or 1 to 2 cups dry leaves and leaving them to steep until cool. Strain the water through a cheesecloth before spraying and dilute further with 2 to 4 cups water. Add a very small amount of non-detergent liquid soap (1/4 teaspoon in 1 to 2 quarts of water) to help spray stick to leaves and spread better. You can also buy commercial essential herbal oils and dilute with water to make a spray. Experiment with proportions, starting with a few drops of oil per cup of water.

  • How to Use: Spray plants thoroughly, especially undersides of leaves, and repeat at weekly intervals if necessary.

  • Garlic Spray
    • Protection Offered: Good results, with quick kill, have been noted against aphids, cabbage loppers, earwigs, June bugs, leafhoppers, squash bugs and whiteflies. The spray does not appear to harm adult lady beetles, and some gardeners have found that it doesn't work against the Colorado potato beetles, grape leaf skeletonizers, grasshoppers, red ants, or sowbugs.
    • How to Make: Soak 3 ounces of finely minced garlic cloves in 2 teaspoons of mineral oil for at least 24 hours. Slowly add 1 pint of water that has 1/4 ounce liquid soap or commercial insecticide soap mixed into it. Stir thoroughly and strain into a glass jar for storage. use at a rate of 1 to 2 Tablespoons of mixture to a pint of water. If this is effective, try a more dilute solution in order to use as little as possible.
    • How to Use: Spray plants carefully to ensure thorough coverage. To check for possible leaf damage to sensitive ornamentals from the oil and soap in the spray, do a test spray on a few leaves or plants first. If no leaf damage occurs in 2 or 3 days, go ahead and spray more.
    I think I shall simply ‘check in’ with all of you today. Perhaps, if you are all still reading, you could discuss in the comments if you feel like it.
    tentcamping  A friend of mine commented to me (personally) about my last post and said that it made her reflect upon vacation/holidays. She (in her 20’s so only her perception as she was not around in the 50’s) said that it made her think how she thinks of vacations and family holidays in the 1950’s as people camping in tents, or small trailers (Not the huge RV’s of today) or the rustic cabin as opposed to what many feel today is the vacation where one spends a lot, is pampered (message etc) and lay about. rusticcabin She pointed out that often camping and rustic trips of the 1950’s must have almost been MORE work than simply being at home, yet families did it and presumably had fun to boot. While today we see lines of unhappy children at Disney land or running about poolside at expensive resorts while the parents lay about. Not very much bonding or coming together.
    This really made me think how that, even how we holiday today, really is a sort of description of how we work as family and community unites. Not much ‘pulling together’ and ‘working’ on our vacations, really just more relaxing. I know many people work crazy hours and do feel they need to be lazy on holiday, but I wonder, are they just trading one sofa and tv for another? Is a vacation now more about spending than doing? I don’t know, you tell me. I would love reassurance that it is not. Is there any fun in not adding some fun challenge? Is it just no longer in our modern make-up? What do any of you think? Do we think we vacation differently as a unit than we did in 1950’s?
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