Organic Roots

This title could be about carrots and beets, but I’m referring to a website: organicroots.nal.gov . This site has USDA publications from the early 20th century. Chemicals were not commonly used in farms and gardens a hundred years ago. What worked for growers of that era is usually still good practice today.

The publication on figs describes pruning, taking cuttings, and liming the soil that are applicable today. Two fig varieties that I grow (Brown Turkey and Celeste) were described. If varieties have lasted a century, they likely have good qualities.  It’s not youtube, but is definitely time tested.

Another publication describes vinegar making. I use basically the same method they describe. The first step is making alcohol. The Department of Agriculture was publishing this bulletin right through the prohibition era. While one federal agency was bent on destroying stills, another was describing how to make alcohol. For gardeners with an interest in the way things used to be done, it’s an interesting site.

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