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Worm Bins and Vermiculture – Compost your kitchen scraps

What to do when you have a ton of compostable kitchen scraps or even tons of juicing pulp? That’s the dilemma I faced when I started working at Juice’d in Orlando, Florida. One of the answers I found was to “Get Worms”.worm bin

Yes I said “Get worms”. Not the kind your dog may get. The kind I’m talking about aren’t parasites, they are composters, they consume organic matter and produce rich soil. I was fortunate enough to see a presentation by the local worm lady Bernie Moro (Our Vital Earth) and was convinced that this was the route to go.

Since I was inundated with copious amounts of worm food from work, now all I needed was proper housing for my worms and the actual worms. Housing was easy to find. There a many DIY options and many purchasable options as well.

I went with the Worm Factory 360 which I purchased off Amazon. The worms I picked up locally from Our Vital Earth.
Worm Factory 360 WF360B Worm Composter, Black
It only took a month until I really started to see what the worms could do. As long as you keep them fed and provide them with fresh bedding (dry compostables) they will multiply and produce worm castings (poop) which is nutrient dense soil. This whole process is called “vermiculture”.

Enjoy this video of me adding another layer to my “worm condo”. Feel free to post any questions and comments. -Keep It Live!

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Prepare for Spring

raw_gardens_kale_collards_tobacco

Greetings Health Fans,

It’s still a bit chilly around here but I thought I’d share a video from last summer that features one of my raised bed gardens at Camp Rawnora. I used old fence posts and fence boards to create the frame for the garden. The length of the fence boards determined the length of my garden. The only cutting I did was on the fence posts which I cut down to 14 inches. I dug a 6 inch deep hole for each of them and secured them in the ground before attaching the face boards. With recycled wood it is important to pre-drill holes and secure everything with wood screws. This aged wood had a tendency to split at the ends and pre-drilling will prevent that.

Underneath I lined the ground with cardboard and newspaper to kill off the grass and to prevent weeds from growing up into the bed. Eventually all of this material will breakdown and turn into future fertilizer. The beds were filled with composted manure which our horses happily produce. I topped the beds and the walkway around the bed with woodchips. This was useful for retaining moisture in the beds especially during the drought we had last summer.

humming_bird_tobacco_flower

All the plants that went into the raised bed were grown from organic seed started under grow lights and then transplanted. The variety of tobacco used was from heirloom seeds gifted to Camp Rawnora by a Native American. The tobacco leaves and seeds were collected for ceremonial usage. As you can see from the pictures, humming birds enjoy the bountiful yellow blooms of the tobacco plant.

Currently the bed has a thick layer of dead leaves on top of it which is covered in a layer of snow. Eventually the snow will melt and it will be time to replant the bed. This year I plan on using activated EM to prepare the soil and I hope to experiment with compost tea as well. I’ll be sure to post my progress.

Keep it Live!

 

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Raw Update from Camp Rawnora and Chef Adam

Goshen, IN Meetup

Greetings to all you health crusaders out there.

There’s a lot going on in these parts… workshops, retreats, potlucks… oh my! And don’t forget the Saturday farmer’s market in St. Joe, MI.

The Herald Palladium, a local paper here in Michigan, did a feature this month on raw foods. They interviewed me regarding my experience with raw foods. Here’s the link: http://heraldpalladium.com/articles/2012/06/12/features/10257118.txt They also did a counter point interview with a “dietician/nutritionist” from a local hospital. I have yet to find a medical facility that has a decent grasp on nutrition. Read her interview and decide for yourself. I’m a little at odds with her recommendation of soy and canola oil… my stomach turns just thinking about it. This isn’t surprising considering many medical facilities give products like “Boost” to their patients considering it “healthy”. Here’s a snap shot of this “health” drink’s label… you decide.

Is this nutritious?

Second and third ingredients are sugar plus 5 obvious GMO ingredients and a whole chemical cocktail to follow… health drink? More like sick drink. Moving on…

I’ve been busy planting the gardens at Camp Rawnora and at Ronora Lodge. Half of the large greenhouse is planted with kale and tomatoes. I also constructed a couple of raised beds for tomatoes, kale, collards and tobacco (ceremonial).

The fruit tree crop was devastated here in Southwest Michigan due to warm weather in March which got the fruit trees blooming early only to get nailed by freezing temperatures in April. The berries are still in full effect along with melons that will be ripe in August… just in time for the Abundance Vortex weekend August 3-5. Mark your calendar, buy your ticket and pack your tent. This should be quite an event.

Here’s a tasty recipe and video to hold you over until your visit in August… Tropical chia fruit salad.

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