Lemon Tree tra la la la la la …..

How to grow an organic

lemon tree from seed

When life gives you lemons, grow trees!

If you’ve ever seen a flowering lemon tree, you’ll understand why. For those of you who haven’t, allow me explain. Their lush, dark green, oval leaves have a glossy texture that shimmers in sunlight. Their delicate white flowers bloom with a citrus fragrance and are soft to the touch. Their exotic nature provides an alluring quality. And, finally, they bear the exciting possibility of fruit!

Typically, lemon trees flourish outdoors year-round in hot, sunny regions, but they can also thrive indoors as edible houseplants in cold-season climates. At the organic food store where I work we have a healthy lemon cutting producing massive fruit in a garage setting all year. It makes for an impressive sight during the dead of a Canadian winter!

This is the little tree with big fruit in the shop I work at.

And while rooting cuttings is a sensible option for fast fruit, lemon tree cuttings are not readily available in many parts of the world. But lemons are another story. And although it may take anywhere from 3-6 years for your tree to be capable of producing fruit, there is something extra rewarding about starting from seed. I currently have six strong little seedlings on the go, all of which were germinated in the middle of winter with very little effort. Watching them grow has been an exciting and fascinating experience and I know the best is yet to come.

Here is a step-by-step guide to growing your very own lemon tree from seed:

Things you’ll need:

1. A lemon. Make sure you purchase an organic lemon since some non-organic lemon seeds may be “duds”, incapable of germinating. Any organic lemon will do, but if you have climate or space restrictions, you may want to try looking for a specific variety called a “Meyer” lemon. Meyer lemons are a smaller type of lemon, often grown for ornamental purposes, and are thus better suited for indoor containers. I chose Meyer seeds for these reasons, but you can use any seed that makes sense for your situation.

This is a Meyer lemon!

2. Potting soil. I would guess that any potting soil will do, but I suggest using one with a blend of peat, perlite, vermiculite, and organic fertilizer. Every single one of the seeds I planted in this type of certified organic potting mix have sprouted beautifully, so I think it’s fair to say that it works.

3. Container/pot. A container (with drainage holes) that is 5-6” deep and a few inches in diameter will be sufficient for sprouting; however, the seedling will need to be re-potted into a much larger container. Mature lemon trees prefer a container that is wider rather than deeper, so I suggest planting your seedling in a pot that is 10-16” deep and 12-18” in diameter. Your baby tree will happily make itself at home in this larger container for the next few years, at which time you may want to upgrade again.

4. A grow light or lots of sun. Lemon trees need a lot of light, especially when they are sprouting and require 10-14 hours of it each day. If you don’t have a consistently sunny window (like me), get a grow light. They don’t cost much and will prove their worth in healthy green foliage.

Method for sprouting the lemon seed:

1. Pre-moisten your potting soil. Put some soil into a bucket and mix in some water until the soil is damp all the way through.

2. Fill your container with the pre-moistened soil. Leave about an inch of space below the rim of your container.

3. Slice open your lemon and choose a seed that looks completely full of life. Pop it into your mouth and suck on it until all the flesh is removed and the lemon flavour is gone. Do not allow the seed to dry out at any time. It needs to stay moist in order to germinate. I suggest keeping it in your mouth until you’re ready to plant.

4. Plant your seed! While it’s moist, plant your seed about 1/2″ below the soil level. Cover it completely with soil and water well with a squirt bottle or gentle watering can.

5. Cover your container with breathable plastic to keep your seeds warm and moist. I used a piece of clear garbage bag with holes poked into it and a rubber band to securely hold it in place.

6. Place the container in a warm location and observe for the next few days. Keep in mind: your seed needs warmth and moisture in order to germinate. Don’t allow the potting soil to dry out completely. Also take caution that you don’t cook your seed in its little greenhouse. Too much heat and moisture could lead to a rotten seed! You’re aiming to achieve a nice balance, so if you feel like the soil is warm enough without the plastic then it’s probably safest to remove it.

7. In about two weeks you may notice a sprout emerging from the soil. Once it appears, remove the plastic (if it’s still on) and place the little guy in a warm location with plenty of direct sunlight. Supplement sun with your grow light if needed.

Here are my little guys one month after planting.

At a little less than two months old, this little guy is upgrading to a larger home.

8. Care for your new baby and watch it grow! Provide it with:

  • Water. Ensure that the soil is damp at all times, especially when your lemon tree is young. Do not allow it to sit in a puddle of stagnant water though; those drainage holes are there for good reason.
  • Sunlight. Place it in a warm sunny window where it will receive eight hours of direct sunlight each day, or supplement some sun for a grow light. Since Toronto rarely seems to get any sun in the winter, my sprouts reside in a well-lit window under the warm rays of a grow light for 12 hours each day.
  • Food. In order to keep your lemon tree healthy and growing the soil will eventually need to be replenished with nutrients. I suggest feeding it an organic fertilizer, such as compost or vermicompost, once it has developed a nice little set of leaves. Dig a little trench around the base of your tree, fill it with compost and water it well. Or, serve it up as compost tea. Try feeding it twice a year or as needed, but do not overfeed! When it comes to fertilizing, less it best; so if in doubt, put it off a bit longer. (Another option is to start your seed in potting soil with vermicompost or worm castings mixed into it).
  • Love. Spend some time looking at your new citrus friend. Pay attention to its growth. Feel it, talk to it, sing to it, but don’t try to dance with it. Get into the habit of watching for browning leaves and checking the underside of leaves for pests. Just like us, our plants can fall victim to bugs and disease and may sometimes require some extra love and affection.

Source: http://growingwildceeds.wordpress.com/2012/03/10/how-to-grow-a-lemon-tree-from-seed/

 

Twenty Uses for Leftover Fruit and Vegetable Peels

Twenty Uses for Leftover Fruit and Vegetable Peels

By Treehugger

Don’t throw your kitchen scraps away, put them to work. The outer skins of fruit and vegetables are filled with flavor and vitamins, and most often have enough matter left in them for another go-round.

Some people are peelers, some people aren’t. Some people swear by the nutrients and fiber found in produce skins, others shy away from the taste or texture, or prefer removing the outer layer to reduce pesticide load. Regardless of your peeling preferences, citrus rinds, potato and other root/tuber peels, scooped-out avocados, and even cheese rinds all have more than one life.

Aim to use organic produce in these applications, and make sure to scrub well. And if you don’t have time or need for them at the moment, most of them can be frozen for future use.

HOME

1. Clean Greasy Messes

Before bringing out the big (toxic) cleaning guns in the kitchen, try lemon. Sprinkle affected area with salt or baking soda (to act as an abrasive) and then rub with juiced lemon halves. (Be careful using lemon on sensitive surfaces such as marble.)

2. Shine Your Coffee Pot

For the old diner trick to make glass coffee pots sparkle: Add ice, salt and lemon rinds to an empty coffee pot; swirl around for a minute or two, dump, and rinse well.

3. Clean Your Tea Kettle

For mineral deposit build up in tea kettles, fill the vessel with water and a handful of lemon peels and bring to a boil. Turn off heat and let sit for an hour, drain, and rinse well.

4. Dye Fabric

Pomegranate peels make for great coloring material. Use a stainless steel pot large enough to cover the fabric, fill with hot water and add peels, let it sit overnight. Simmer the water and peels the next day and then remove peels and add wet fabric. Simmer gently for one hour and allow to cool overnight. Remove the next day, rinse in cool water–from thereon, wash with similar colors.

FOOD

5. Make Zest

If you’ve juiced lemons, limes, oranges, or grapefruit but don’t have an immediate need for zest, you can make it anyway and dry or freeze it for future use—zest is a versatile item to have on hand for a bright boost in any number of dishes. If you don’t have a microplane or zester, you can also use the small side of a box grater. Try to scrape just the outer layer, the white layer of pith is bitter. Freeze in an airtight container. To dry, spread the zest on a towel and leave until dried, then store in a clean jar.

6. Make Citrus Extract Powder

Make zest or twists (lemons, limes, oranges, or grapefruit) being sure to remove the pith–and allow to dry, about 3 or 4 days for twists, less for zest. Put in a blender (or spice grinder) and pulverize into a powder. Store in a clean jar.

7. Make Citrus Sugar

Make citrus extract powder and add it to sugar, or you can use fresh twists, put them in a jar with sugar, let the peel’s oil infuse the sugar and remove.

8. Make Lemon Pepper

Mix lemon extract powder with freshly cracked pepper.

9. Make Citrus Olive Oil

Pound citrus peel (pith removed) in a mortar and pestle with some oil added. Place in a jar with more oil and let rest for six hours. Strain into a clean jar.

10. Make Infusions

Infuse honey or vinegar with citrus peels by placing twists and letting the flavors seep. Strain the liquid and store in a clean jar.

11. Make Potato Crisps

Mix potato peels with enough lemon juice and olive oil to evenly coat. Spread the potato peels in a layer on a baking sheet and cook at 400 degrees, stirring once, until golden brown (about 10 minutes). Season to taste.

12. Make Stock
Boil potato peels, onion skins, carrot peels, leek ends, etc for vegetable stock. (Also save fresh herb stems for this!)

13. Boost Soup and Stock

Cheese rinds (sans wax) can be placed in soup stocks for an awesome secret boost of flavor and texture.

14. Add “Meat” to Greens

Cheese rinds can also be added to braised greens for added flavor depth.

15. Keep Brown Sugar Soft

If you regularly fall victim to the brick in the pantry known as hardened brown sugar, try adding some lemon peel (with traces of pulp and pith removed) to keep it moist and pliable.

16. Make Vanilla Sugar

If you use fresh vanilla, after scraping the bean, add the pod to sugar to make vanilla-infused sugar.

BEAUTY

17. Make a Banana Sugar Scrub

Sprinkle sugar on the flesh side of banana peels and use as a soft, exfoliating loofa. Rub gently all over your body and then rinse in the shower.

18. Refresh Your Face

For a skin tonic, rub orange or grapefruit peels on your face (avoiding your eyes) and then gently rinse with warm water.

19. Moisturize

Rub the fleshy part of an avocado peel on your face for a rich moisturizer.

20. Relieve Your Peepers

Potato peels can reduce puffiness around eyes; press the moist side of the fresh peels to the skin for 15 minutes.

20 Uses for Leftover Fruit and Veg Peels

Twenty Uses for Leftover Fruit and Vegetable Peels

By Treehugger

Don’t throw your kitchen scraps away, put them to work. The outer skins of fruit and vegetables are filled with flavor and vitamins, and most often have enough matter left in them for another go-round.

Some people are peelers, some people aren’t. Some people swear by the nutrients and fiber found in produce skins, others shy away from the taste or texture, or prefer removing the outer layer to reduce pesticide load. Regardless of your peeling preferences, citrus rinds, potato and other root/tuber peels, scooped-out avocados, and even cheese rinds all have more than one life.

Aim to use organic produce in these applications, and make sure to scrub well. And if you don’t have time or need for them at the moment, most of them can be frozen for future use.

HOME

1. Clean Greasy Messes

Before bringing out the big (toxic) cleaning gunsin the kitchen, try lemon. Sprinkle affected area with salt or baking soda (to act as an abrasive) and then rub with juiced lemon halves. (Be careful using lemon on sensitive surfaces such as marble.)

2. Shine Your Coffee Pot

For the old diner trick to make glass coffee pots sparkle: Add ice, salt and lemon rinds to an empty coffee pot; swirl around for a minute or two, dump, and rinse well.

3. Clean Your Tea Kettle

For mineral deposit build up in tea kettles, fill the vessel with water and a handful of lemon peels and bring to a boil. Turn off heat and let sit for an hour, drain, and rinse well.

4. Dye Fabric

Pomegranate peels make for great coloring material. Use a stainless steel pot large enough to cover the fabric, fill with hot water and add peels, let it sit overnight. Simmer the water and peels the next day and then remove peels and add wet fabric. Simmer gently for one hour and allow to cool overnight. Remove the next day, rinse in cool water–from thereon, wash with similar colors.

FOOD

5. Make Zest

If you’ve juiced lemons, limes, oranges, or grapefruit but don’t have an immediate need for zest, you can make it anyway and dry or freeze it for future use—zest is a versatile item to have on hand for a bright boost in any number of dishes. If you don’t have a microplane or zester, you can also use the small side of a box grater. Try to scrape just the outer layer, the white layer of pith is bitter. Freeze in an airtight container. To dry, spread the zest on a towel and leave until dried, then store in a clean jar.

6. Make Citrus Extract Powder

Make zest or twists (lemons, limes, oranges, or grapefruit) being sure to remove the pith–and allow to dry, about 3 or 4 days for twists, less for zest. Put in a blender (or spice grinder) and pulverize into a powder. Store in a clean jar.

7. Make Citrus Sugar

Make citrus extract powder and add it to sugar, or you can use fresh twists, put them in a jar with sugar, let the peel’s oil infuse the sugar and remove.

8. Make Lemon Pepper

Mix lemon extract powder with freshly cracked pepper.

9. Make Citrus Olive Oil

Pound citrus peel (pith removed) in a mortar and pestle with some oil added. Place in a jar with more oil and let rest for six hours. Strain into a clean jar.

10. Make Infusions

Infuse honey or vinegar with citrus peels by placing twists and letting the flavors seep. Strain the liquid and store in a clean jar.

11. Make Potato Crisps

Mix potato peels with enough lemon juice and olive oil to evenly coat. Spread the potato peels in a layer on a baking sheet and cook at 400 degrees, stirring once, until golden brown (about 10 minutes). Season to taste.

12. Make Stock
Boil potato peels, onion skins, carrot peels, leek ends, etc for vegetable stock. (Also save fresh herb stems for this!)

13. Boost Soup and Stock

Cheese rinds (sans wax) can be placed in soup stocks for an awesome secret boost of flavor and texture.

14. Add “Meat” to Greens

Cheese rinds can also be added to braised greens for added flavor depth.

15. Keep Brown Sugar Soft

If you regularly fall victim to the brick in the pantry known as hardened brown sugar, try adding some lemon peel (with traces of pulp and pith removed) to keep it moist and pliable.

16. Make Vanilla Sugar

If you use fresh vanilla, after scraping the bean, add the pod to sugar to make vanilla-infused sugar.

BEAUTY

17. Make a Banana Sugar Scrub

Sprinkle sugar on the flesh side of banana peels and use as a soft, exfoliating loofa. Rub gently all over your body and then rinse in the shower.

18. Refresh Your Face

For a skin tonic, rub orange or grapefruit peels on your face (avoiding your eyes) and then gently rinse with warm water.

19. Moisturize

Rub the fleshy part of an avocado peel on your face for a rich moisturizer.

20. Relieve Your Peepers

Potato peels can reduce puffiness around eyes; press the moist side of the fresh peels to the skin for 15 minutes.

Lubberly Lemons – 45 uses therefor ….

45 Uses For Lemons That Will Blow Your Socks Off

May 28, 2013 | Filed under: Health,Health Food,News | Posted by: 

Most people are familiar with the traditional uses for lemons to soothe sore throats and add some citrus flavor to our foods. However the diversity of applications for lemons far exceeds general knowledge and once you read the following list, you’ll likely want to stock at least a few lemons in your kitchen 24-7.

lemon-13266_640

1. Freshen the Fridge
Remove refrigerator odors with ease. Dab lemon juice on a cotton ball or sponge and leave it in the fridge for several hours. Make sure to toss out any malodorous items that might be causing the bad smell.

2. High Blood Pressure
Lemon contains potassium which controls high blood pressure and reduces the effect of nausea and dizziness.

3. Prevent Cauliflower From Turning Brown
Cauliflower tend to turn brown with even the slightest cooking. You can make sure the white vegetables stay white by squeezing a teaspoon of fresh lemon juice on them before heating.

4. Mental Health
Lemon water can also prep up your mood and relieve you from depression and stress. Long distance walkers and world travelers as well as explorers look upon the lemon as a Godsend. When fatigue begins, a lemon is sucked through a hole in the top. Quick acting medicine it is, giving almost unbelievable refreshments.

5. Refresh Cutting Boards
No wonder your kitchen cutting board smells! After all, you use it to chop onions, crush garlic, and prepare fish. To get rid of the smell and help sanitize the cutting board, rub it all over with the cut side of half a lemon or wash it in undiluted juice straight from the bottle.

6. Respiratory Problems
Lemon water can reduce phlegm; and can also help you breathe properly and aids a person suffering with asthma.

7. Treating Arthritis and Rheumatism
Lemon is a diuretic – assists in the production of urine which helps you to reduce inflammation by flushing out toxins and bacteria while also giving you relief from arthritis and rheumatism.

Sweet, sugary Brach's lemon drops. Made with r...

8. May help prevent Kidney Stones
Regular consumption of the refreshing drink — or even lemon juice mixed with water — may increase the production of urinary citrate, a chemical in the urine that prevents the formation of crystals that may build up into kidney stones.

9. Keep Insects Out of the Kitchen
You don’t need insecticides or ant traps to ant-proof your kitchen. Just give it the lemon treatment. First squirt some lemon juice on door thresholds and windowsills. Then squeeze lemon juice into any holes or cracks where the ants are getting in. Finally, scatter small slices of lemon peel around the outdoor entrance. The ants will get the message that they aren’t welcome. Lemons are also effective against roaches and fleas: Simply mix the juice of 4 lemons (along with the rinds) with 1/2 gallon (2 liters) water and wash your floors with it; then watch the fleas and roaches flee. They hate the smell.

10. Anti-Aging
Lemon water reduces the production of free radicals which are responsible for aging skin and skin damage. Lemon water is calorie free and an antioxidant.

11. Fruit and Vegetable Wash
You never know what kind of pesticides or dirt may be lurking on the skin of your favorite fruits and vegetables. Slice your lemon and squeeze out one tablespoon of lemon juice into your spray bottle. The lemon juice is a natural disinfectant and will leave your fruits and vegetables smelling nice too.

12. Treat Infections
Lemon water can fight throat infections thanks to its antibacterial property. If salt water does not work for you, try lime and water for gargling.

13. Deodorize Your Garbage 
If your garbage is beginning to smell yucky, here’s an easy way to deodorize it: Save leftover lemon and orange peels and toss them at the base under the bag. To keep it smelling fresh, repeat once every couple of weeks.

14. Keep Guacamole Green
You’ve been making guacamole all day long for the big party, and you don’t want it to turn brown on top before the guests arrive. The solution: Sprinkle a liberal amount of fresh lemon juice over it and it will stay fresh and green. The flavor of the lemon juice is a natural complement to the avocados in the guacamole. Make the fruit salad hours in advance too. Just squeeze some lemon juice onto the apple slices, and they’ll stay snowy white.

15. Purges The Blood
We consume a lot of junk food or food with a lot of preservatives and artificial flavours. This builds up a lot of toxins in the blood and body but daily consumption of lemon water helps to purify the blood.

16. Make Soggy Lettuce Crisp
Don’t toss that soggy lettuce into the garbage. With the help of a little lemon juice you can toss it in a salad instead. Add the juice of half a lemon to a bowl of cold water. Then put the soggy lettuce in it and refrigerate for 1 hour. Make sure to dry the leaves completely before putting them into salads or sandwiches.

17. Oral Health
Lemon juice also stops bleeding gums and reduces toothaches

18. Lighten Age Spots
Why buy expensive creams when you’ve got lemon juice? To lighten liver spots or freckles, try applying lemon juice directly to the area. Let it sit for 15 minutes and then rinse your skin clean. It’s a safe and effective skin-lightening agent.

This image shows a whole and a cut lemon. It i...

19. Create Blonde Highlights
For salon-worthy highlights, add 1/4 cup lemon juice to 3/4 cup water and rinse your hair with the mixture. Then, sit in the sun until your hair dries. To maximize the effect, repeat once daily for up to a week.

20. Make a Room Scent/Humidifier
Freshen and moisturize the air in your home on dry winter days. Make your own room scent that also doubles as a humidifier. If you have a wood-burning stove, place an enameled cast-iron pot or bowl on top, fill with water, and add lemon (and/or orange) peels, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and apple skins. No wood-burning stove? Use your stovetop instead and just simmer the water periodically.

21. Clean and Whiten Nails
Pamper your hands without a manicurist. Add the juice of 1/2 lemon to 1 cup warm water and soak your fingertips in the mixture for 5 minutes. After pushing back the cuticles, rub some lemon peel back and forth against the nail.

22. Cleanse Your Face
Zap zits naturally by dabbing lemon juice on blackheads to draw them out during the day. You can also wash your face with lemon juice for a natural cleanse and exfoliation. Your skin should improve after several days of treatment. Lemon water is also a cooling agent, best way to beat the heat.

23. Freshen Your Breath
Make an impromptu mouthwash by rinsing with lemon juice straight from the bottle. Swallow for longer-lasting fresh breath. The citric acid in the juice alters the pH level in your mouth, killing bacteria that causes bad breath. Rinse after a few minutes because long-term exposure to the acid in lemons can harm tooth enamel.

24. Treat Flaky Dandruff
If itchy, scaly dandruff has you scratching your head, relief may be no farther away than your refrigerator. Just massage two tablespoons lemon juice into your scalp and rinse with water. Then stir one teaspoon lemon juice into one cup water and rinse your hair with it. Repeat daily until your dandruff disappears.

25. Get Rid of Tough Stains on Marble
You probably think of marble as stone, but it is really petrified calcium (also known as old seashells). That explains why it is so porous and easily stained and damaged. Those stains can be hard to remove. If washing won’t remove a stubborn stain, try this: Cut a lemon in half, dip the exposed flesh into some table salt, and rub it vigorously on the stain. But do this only as a last resort; acid can damage marble. Rinse well. Use These Lemons To Clean – Easy and Effective

26. Remove Berry Stains
It sure was fun to pick your own berries, but now your fingers are stained with berry juice that won’t come off no matter how much you scrub with soap and water. Try washing your hands with undiluted lemon juice, then wait a few minutes and wash with warm, soapy water. Repeat until your hands are stain-free.

27. Soften Dry, Scaly Elbows
Itchy elbows are bad enough, but they look terrible too. For better looking (and feeling) elbows, mix baking soda and lemon juice to make an abrasive paste, then rub it into your elbows for a soothing, smoothing, and exfoliating treatment. Rinse your extremities in a mixture of equal parts lemon juice and water, then massage with olive oil and dab dry with a soft cloth.

28. Headaches 
Lemon juice with a few teaspoons of hot tea added is the treatment of a sophisticated New York bartender, for those who suffer with hangover headaches–and from headaches due to many other causes. He converts his customers to this regime, and weans them away from drug remedies completely.

29. Chills and Fevers
Chills and fevers may be due to a variety of causes; never the less the lemon is always a helpful remedy. Spanish physicians regard it as an infallible friend.

30. Diptheria
Skip the vaccine for this disease. Lemon Juice Treatment still proves as one of the most powerful antiseptics and the strong digestive qualities of the fruit are admired around the world. With the juice every hour or two, and at the same time, 1/2 to 1 tsp. should be swallowed. This cuts loose the false membrane in the throat and permits it to come out.

31. Vaginal Hygiene
Diluted lemon juice makes a safe and sane method of vaginal hygiene. Though it is a powerful antiseptic it is nevertheless free from irritating drugs in douches and suppositories.

32. Forget The Moth Balls
A charming French custom to keep closets free from moths is to take ripe lemons and stick them with cloves all over the skin. The heavily studded lemons slowly dry with their cloves, leaving a marvelous odor throughout the closets and rooms.

33. Stomach Health
Digestive problems are the most common ailments but warm water and lime juice is the solution to most digestive problems. Lemon juice helps to purify the blood, reduces your chances of indigestion, constipation, eliminates toxins from the body, adds digestion and reduces phlegm.

34. Disinfect Cuts and Scrapes
Stop bleeding and disinfect minor cuts and scraps by pouring a few drops of lemon juice directly on the cut. You can also apply the juice with a cotton ball and hold firmly in place for one minute.

35. Soothe Poison Ivy Rash
You won’t need an ocean of calamine lotion the next time poison ivy comes a-creeping. Just apply lemon juice directly to the affected area to soothe itching and alleviate the rash.

36. Remove Warts
You’ve tried countless remedies to banish warts and nothing seems to work. Next time, apply a dab of lemon juice directly to the wart using a cotton swab. Repeat for several days until the acids in the lemon juice dissolve the wart completely.

37. Bleach Delicate Fabrics
Avoid additional bleach stains by swapping ordinary household chlorine bleach with lemon juice, which is milder but no less effective. Soak your delicates in a mixture of lemon juice and baking soda for at least half an hour before washing.

38. Clean Tarnished Brass and Polish Chrome
Say good-bye to tarnish on brass, copper, or stainless steel. Make a paste of lemon juice and salt (or substitute baking soda or cream of tartar for the salt) and coat the affected area. Let it stay on for 5 minutes. Then wash in warm water, rinse, and polish dry. Use the same mixture to clean metal kitchen sinks too. Apply the paste, scrub gently, and rinse. Get rid of mineral deposits and polish chrome faucets and other tarnished chrome. Simply rub lemon rind over the chrome and watch it shine! Rinse well and dry with a soft cloth.

39. Replace Your Dry Cleaner
Ditch the expensive dry-cleaning bills (and harsh chemicals) with this homegrown trick. Simply scrub the stained area on shirts and blouses with equal parts lemon juice and water. Your “pits” will be good as new, and smell nice too.

40. Boost Laundry Detergent
For more powerful cleaning action, pour 1 cup lemon juice into the washer during the wash cycle. The natural bleaching action of the juice will zap stains and remove rust and mineral discolorations from cotton T-shirts and briefs and will leave your clothes smelling fresh. Your clothes will turn out brighter and also come out smelling lemon-fresh.

41. Rid Clothes of Mildew
Have you ever unpacked clothes you stored all winter and discovered some are stained with mildew? To get rid of it, make a paste of lemon juice and salt and rub it on the affected area, then dry the clothes in sunlight. Repeat the process until the stain is gone.

42. Eliminate Fireplace Odor
There’s nothing cozier on a cold winter night than a warm fire burning in the fireplace — unless the fire happens to smell horrible. Next time you have a fire that sends a stench into the room, try throwing a few lemon peels into the flames. Or simply burn some lemon peels along with your firewood as a preventive measure.

43. Neutralize Cat-Box Odor
You don’t have to use an aerosol spray to neutralize foul-smelling cat-box odors or freshen the air in your bathroom. Just cut a couple of lemons in half. Then place them, cut side up, in a dish in the room, and the air will soon smell lemon-fresh.

44. Deodorize a Humidifier
When your humidifier starts to smell funky, deodorize it with ease: Just pour 3 or 4 teaspoons lemon juice into the water. It will not only remove the off odor but will replace it with a lemon-fresh fragrance. Repeat every couple of weeks to keep the odor from returning.

45. Reduce Asthma Symptoms
In addition to a general detoxifying diet, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice before each meal, and before retiring can reduce asthma symptoms.

* If you do consume lemon peel, stick to organic lemons to reduce your pesticide exposure.

John Summerly is nutritionist, herbologist, and homeopathic practitioner. He is a leader in the natural health community and consults athletes, executives and most of all parents of children on the benefits of complementary therapies for health and prevention.


Sources :

  1. Prevent Disease
  2. Image Credit

Cold, cough remedy, natural

sore throat

This week my three year old daughter was sick with a bad cold. Poor little thing, this is the first bad cough she has had. I always have a hard time when my babies are sick. I do my best to care for them. I’ve spent a good part of this week snuggling her and feeding her nourishing food.

My daughter, Naomi, didn’t sleep well the other night due to her sore throat and cough. Being the “natural mama” I am, I decided to make her a cough syrup rather than purchasing medicine.

I did some research and this is what I learned…

Honey

Honey has powerful anti-viral and anti-microbial properties! In clinical studies, honey has shown to be just as affective in alleviating coughs as over the counter cough medicine. Honey is also known to help alleviate allergies. According to this article, taking a few teaspoons of local raw honey a day prior to pollen season can be affective in boosting your immunity to pollen!

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is often used in home remedies for a good reason! It is known to help boost the immune system and also has antiviral and antibacterial properties. I personally like to drink lemon juice when I have a stuffy nose. It helps to clear my sinuses so I can breathe better.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is rich in antioxidants and contains lauric acid, which is anti-bacterial and anti-viral. Coconut oil can be used to help prevent colds by boosting the immune system. Once the cold is set in, coconut oil can help reduce the length of sickness and can be quite soothing when added to warm honey-lemon water or tea.

Mix these three ingredients together and you have yourself a super immune boosting syrup that will help alleviate coughs and sore throats!

Honey and Lemon Cough Syrup with Coconut Oil

Ingredients

Mix all the ingredients together in a small saucepan and heat over low until coconut oil is melted.

Take warm syrup by the spoonful as desired. You can also mix the syrup into hot water or tea.

Once the syrup is cooled the coconut oil will harden. Gently warm the syrup up before using. Store in refrigerator for up to a month.

Sources

Lemon in water morning ritual

Why You Should Drink Warm Water & Lemon

The way you start each day is incredibly important. Whether you’re a mom, a coach, a writer, a small business owner or a yoga teacher, what you do first thing in the morning matters.
According to Ayurvedic philosophy, choices that you make regarding your daily routine either build up resistance to disease or tear it down.
Ayurveda invites us to get a jump-start on the day by focusing on morning rituals that work to align the body with nature’s rhythms, balance the doshas and foster self-esteem alongside self-discipline.
Your mind may say you have to check emails, take the dog out, get the kids out the door, that you can’t be late for work or that you just don’t have enough time to cultivate your own morning rituals.
But, if you can only make time for one ritual that will improve your health, let it be this…..
Start the day out with a mug of warm water and the juice of half a lemon.
It’s so simple and the benefits are just too good to ignore. Warm water with lemon:
1. Boosts you’re immune system 
Lemons are high in Vitamin C and potassium. Vitamin C is great for fighting colds and potassium stimulates brain and nerve function and helps control blood pressure.
2. Balances pH
Lemons are an incredibly alkaline food, believe it or not. Yes, they are acidic on their own, but inside our bodies they’re alkaline (the citric acid does not create acidity in the body once metabolized). As you wellness warriors know, an alkaline body is really the key to good health.
3. Helps with weight loss
Lemons are high in pectin fiber, which helps fight hunger cravings. It also has been shown that people who maintain a more alkaline diet lose weight faster. And, my experience is that when I start the day off right, it’s easier to make the best choices for myself the rest of the day.
4. Aids digestion
The warm water serves to stimulate the gastrointestinal tract and peristalsis—the waves of muscle contractions within the intestinal walls that keep things moving. Lemons and limes are also high in minerals and vitamins and help loosen ama, or toxins, in the digestive tract.
5. Acts as a gentle, natural diuretic
Lemon juice helps flush out unwanted materials because lemons increase the rate of urination in the body. Toxins are, therefore, released at a faster rate which helps keep your urinary tract healthy.
6. Clears skin
The vitamin C helps decrease wrinkles and blemishes. Lemon water purges toxins from the blood which helps keep skin clear as well.
7. Hydrates the lymph system
This cup of goodness helps start the day on a hydrated note, which helps prevent dehydration (obviously) and adrenal fatigue. When your body is dehydrated, or deeply dehydrated (adrenal fatigue) it can’t perform all of it’s proper functions, which leads to toxic buildup, stress, constipation, and the list goes on. Your adrenals happen to be two small glands that sit on top of your kidneys, and along with your thyroid, create energy. They also secrete important hormones, including aldosterone. Aldosterone is a hormone secreted by your adrenals that regulates water levels and the concentration of minerals, like sodium, in your body, helping you stay hydrated. Your adrenals are also responsible for regulating your stress response. So, the bottom line is that you really don’t want to mess with a deep state of dehydration!
Adopting just this one practice of drinking a cup of warm water with lemon in the morning for a month can radically alter your experience of the day. Don’t be surprised if you begin to view mornings in a new light.
Like I said, the recipe is really simple—a cup of warm (not hot) water and the juice from half a lemon.
In the comments below, tell me which one of these benefits is going to get you to try this morning ritual. Or, if you’re already a lemon water junkie, what specific benefits have you noticed?
Published May 10, 2012 at 10:30 AM
About Ashley Pitman
As a Wellness Educator, Cleanse Specialist crusader for whole-body nourishment, Ashley Pitman supports thousands of people in achieving a hot body and radiant beauty with a blend of raw food education, Ayurvedic inspiration, guided detoxes courses, and lots of loving encouragement. All the action takes place at Vixi.com, a digital ashram for wellness-inspired people looking to use food as medicine and health as a spiritual practice. Stay devoted to your radiance and well-being by joining the free weekly newsletter with health and lifestyle tips that work. Click here to join and claim a free gift.More from Ashley Pitman on MindBodyGreen

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Benefits of Warm Lemon Water

Ten reasons to drink warm

lemon water in the mornings

 

We found this interesting article from lajollamom.com suggesting 10 good reasons to drink warm water lemon in the morning.

We all know that lemons has a lot of health benefits, but surprisingly this simple little drink can do more wonders for your body. Instead of getting a cup of coffee, why not replace it with a warm water lemon drink? Below are the good factors to consider.

1. Boosts your immune system: Lemons are high in vitamin C, which is great for fighting colds.  They’re high in potassium, which stimulates brain and nerve function. Potassium also helps control blood pressure.

2. Balances pH: Drink lemon water everyday and you’ll reduce your body’s overall acidity. Lemon is one of the most alkaline foods around. Yes, lemon has citric acid but it does not create acidity in the body once metabolized.

3. Helps with weight loss:   Lemons are high in pectin fiber, which helps fight hunger cravings. It also has been shown that people who maintain a more alkaline diet lose weight faster.

4. Aids digestion:  Lemon juice helps flush out unwanted materials. It encourages the liver to produce bile which is an acid that required for digestion. Efficient digestion reduces heartburn and constipation.

5. Is a diuretic: Lemons increase the rate of urination in the body, which helps purify it. Toxins are, therefore, released at a faster rate which helps keep your urinary tract healthy.

6. Clears skin:  The vitamin C component helps decrease wrinkles and blemishes. Lemon water purges toxins from the blood which helps keep skin clear as well. It can actually be applied directly to scars to help reduce their appearance.

7. Freshens breath: Not only this, but it can help relieve tooth pain and gingivitis. The citric acid can erode tooth enamel, so you should monitor this.

8. Relieves respiratory problems: Warm lemon water helps get rid of chest infections and halt those pesky coughs. It’s thought to be helpful to people with asthma and allergies too.

9. Keeps you zen: Vitamin C is one of the first things depleted when you subject your mind and body to stress. As mentioned previously, lemons are chock full of vitamin C.

10. Helps kick the coffee habit:  After taking a glass of warm lemon water, most people suggests of less craving for coffee in the morning.

Why it has to be warm water not cold? Cold water likely provides a shock or stress factor to the body. It takes energy for your body to process cold water.

The recipe is really simple – a cup of warm water (not hot) and the juice from half of a lemon.