Kitchens are relativity a new innovation. After all back in the day, when Noah was building his boat and Joseph was saving all that food, most people ate and prepared food around the campfire. Sure, there were primitive kitchens but they were more for storage than food preparation. Food was eaten off the tree, or vine, or plucked right from the ground and prepared for the fire. My point is that the garden and kitchen have always been strongly connected and they continue to be even to this day. As you probably already know lots of people just can't see it!
These days the garden and kitchen have an even stronger connection. If you use natural things from your kitchen to help you grow healthy food you can be assured your food will remain chemical free.
Here are some tips that are natural, easy and will help save money.
Do you have herbs growing in your kitchen windowsill that are getting too big for their pot? If you can’t keep the bugs from eating your vegetable plants, but don’t want to use chemical pesticides you can use herbs as natural pesticides. Farmers and gardeners have been doing this for years. You can plant herbs like basil, thyme, dill, sage, and marigolds near your other vegetable plants. Bugs hate these herbs and will steer clear of them and anything you plant near them. Onion and garlic plants also help to repel the harmful bugs.
You can use natural dish soap for a homemade pesticide. Just add one tablespoon of dish soap to about two cups of water. Then pour the solution into a spray bottle and spray on your plants. The dish soap isn’t harmful to most of the helpful insects but it will help keep aphids and other harmful insects away. Be sure to use a natural soap because you don't want chemicals from the soap to get into your soil or on your vegetables.
Ripen Green Tomatoes
If you harvested your tomatoes from your garden for the winter but some are still a little green you can ripen them with apples. Place the tomatoes in a paper bag with some ripe apples then wait a few days; after that take them out and they should be ripe. This also works with green bananas.
Keep Away Ants
You can use cayenne pepper to keep the ants out of your garden or house. Sprinkle some cayenne pepper over the threshold of your front and back door or wherever you think the ants are coming from, or sprinkle it around the perimeter of your garden. Ants hate cayenne pepper and it should help to keep them out of your house and your garden.
One of simplest things you can use from your kitchen to help your garden is water. I don’t mean watering the plants, I mean giving the bees water. Bees need water as well as plants. All you have to is fill a bucket with water and cover the top of the water with corks. This will give the bees something to land on so they can drink the water.
Feed The Birds
Peanut butter helps attract birds which helps keep the insect population down. Mix some peanut butter with the bird seed next time you fill up your bird feeder. Peanut butter can be substituted for suet but you should only put either out in the winter. This combination should help to attract birds to help get rid of the insects, and the birds are also cool to watch.
Add Nitrogen To Your Soil
Before you throw out those kitchen scraps, such as orange peels, banana peels, apple cores, and broccoli stems, how about using them for compost? If you have a composter then you can throw them in there. Though if you don’t have a composter you can make a compost pile. Mix the kitchen scraps with brown material like cardboard or newspaper into a pile and let it sit. After a few weeks when it is fully decomposed into compost then you can mix it with the soil in your garden.
Keep Weeds Away
Newspaper can also be used as compost. You can add it to the soil along with your kitchen scraps. It can also be used as mulch. Cut the newspaper into small pieces (if you have a paper shredder you feed it through there) and then cover the bottom of your garden with it. You might want to lay a little wood mulch on top of it so it doesn't blow away. Make sure you don’t use newspaper with colored ink since the colored ink could be harmful to the soil and plants, though the regular black ink is fine.
Give Seeds A Good Start
If you’re ready to start your seeds for the fall and need a place to start them. You can use an egg carton. Take the egg carton (don’t use the styrofoam ones, use the cardboard ones) and cut the top off. Then fill the carton with dirt and plant your seeds into each slot. Then once the seeds have sprouted you can separate the plants with scissors and plant it. You can plant the egg carton with your plant because the cardboard will just decompose.
Say Goodbye To Snails and Slugs
Snails and slugs are another pest that like to eat your plants. Salt can help keep them out of your garden. Sprinkle some salt around the perimeter of your garden. Salt will kill snails or slug if they come into contact with so they will definitely avoid it.
Did I leave anything out? Do you have a favorite gardening recipe that you use? Share it in the comments.