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Getting the kitchen blues is actually very good and healthy. Native blueberries are one of the best and most important health foods that grow throughout much of northern North America either as domesticated bush, or in the wild. In recent decades, blueberries have been developed and planted in warmer climates, such as South America, making the tasty berries available throuighout the year.

In northwestern Pennsylvania and many other northern locations, the harvest season begins in late July and continues well into August and even September. The “little blue dynamos” can be found at roadside stands, farmers markets, pick-your-own berry farms, in addition to supermarkets. With very little effort, it is easy to find plenty of berries to last throughout the year, Blueberries can be frozen or canned for kitchen use throughout the year; the berries also make a very good wine or brandy.

Blueberry bushes can also be easily planted in the yard or garden at home for your own personal use. The bushes are attractive and require minimal space. The stunning white flowers in the spring, attract a wide variety of native bees, such as the bumblebee as well as honey bees. The blueberry bush, however,  prefers a soil which is on the acidic side, enjoy plenty of organic material, along with plenty of sun. Most experts suggest planting at least two different varities of blueberries which will help to increase yields. The bushes can live and reproduce for decades. (I have bsushes, which are approaching 75 years as far as anyone can tell; they’ve just always been there.).

Deer don’t bother the bushes, nor do rabbits or groundhogs. Even when there were cows and sheep here, the farm animals didn’t bother the bushes. There can be several problems with some insect pests but those can be easily controlled with the proper information from an agricultural organization. Here, the bushes have been pest free from insect problems. Once the berries begin to ripen birds enjoys them just as much as humans. Many growers use an inexpenive netting to control the bird-plucking.

Blueberries are flavorful and can be used in a wide range of recipes, even in a blueberry pizza!  Best of all, the berries are a great health food. One cup contains only about 80 calories and has more antioxidents than either spinach or oranges.. Blueberries are high in Vitamins C, one cup is 50 percent of the FDA recommended allowance,  and contain commendable amounts of Vitamin E and other vital nutrients such as beta-carotene, folic acid, fiber and potassium.

For more information about blueberries, including one communities Blueberry Social, and other rural tips and comments, discover Koyote Hill

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For health sake,  the blues are pretty good, and perhaps, the best.

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For Immediate Release

Tyler Built, an American company, located in Belsena Mills, PA, announced  the availability of a new, inovative and technological device, which will provide High Speed Internet Service to millions of underserved rural Americans as well as many people throughout the global community.

The small sized device (about the size of a match box), is inexpensive and the convenient installation of the device, will provide high speed internet access to virtually anywhere in the world

. “The driving force for this innovation is to provide persons of all ages access to the learning resources, educational resource, business opportunities and other vital tools needed by our society,” Jeffery Charles Tyler, the inventor, visionary and engineer at Tyler Built, said. “This technology greatly improves the total information that can be transmitted over small wires and other medium starting in the range of MHz to infinity. By itself and combined with other transmission devices, it will change the way the internet is accessed the way we know it today. “

Customer Impact Greatly Improved

Many students, businessmen and women, and other customers in rural USA are under-served with old “dial up” internet service or other expensive and somewhat unreliable services.

“I have spent eight years developing this inexpensive and easily installed device,” Tyler said. “This electronic/regenerator can accept any transmission signal, digital or analogue and repeat, reform, and regenerate that signal for long distance high speed communications. The device can be easily installed into existing telephone lines or other outside cabling

Jeffrey Tyler, Engineer, Visionary, Inventor

“Innovation that connects people with technologies”

Tyler BuiltSM

“Patent Pending” 62069889 Under 35 U.S.C. 111, 35 U.S.C. 371.

Skype: Tyler_Built

Doing what they said could not be done.

For More Information:

tyler_built@yahoo.com

VoIP: 813-523-0247

Cell: 727-262-1991

Penn State University EET

St Petersburg College

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Jeffrey C Tyler

Mobile: (727) 262-1991

Business: (813) 523-0247

https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffreytyler1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tYIhaCYCYqE

More information and other good news for rural America Discover Koyote Hill

The fields and meadows of the eastern United States and Canada are turning white. The native perennial herb, Boneset, is blooming. The white blooms appear in August and the display usually runs through the end of September. The white blossoms were valauable medicine to many in the early days. Today, boneset is largely forgotten,.

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I was fortunate one day to meet a logger who was checking a timber stand one day. As we were leaving the woods and walking into a field, he pointed the boneset plants out. For as long as I can remember, the plants were always there, year after year, but was unsure of what they were.

Boneset, technically known as Eupatorium perfoliatum, usually grows in moist areas of the fields. It’s white blossoms are produced on the top of hairy stalks. The stalks can be upwards of five to six feet feet tall. Often the herb can often be found growing among another important native plants; the golden yellow goldenrod, the deep purple wild asters, the shades of glowing pink Joe Pye Weed and the orange flowers of native Jewelweed. Boneset helps to provide quite the stunning flower show, free of all charge.

Boneset was an important medicinal herb and still has a place in a few medicine cabinets. Boneset was a well known and an important medicinal to the Native Americans, the early pioneers and to most rural American families until the early to mid -1900’s. The blossoms had a message, get ready flu and cold season is coming.

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Boneset was used much like we use any aspirin today. It was widely prescribed to help the pain of broken bones and aid in their healing. Boneset was a common remedy for coughs, fevers and was the early stand-out treatment for the treating the flu. Interestingly, influenza or the word flu was not a common word for the pioneers. The term “break bone fever” (boneset) described what is commonly called the flu or influenza today.

Boneset was also used to treat other ailments such as malaria, rheumatism and pneumonia, arthritis and even migraines.

Originally, the herb boneset was used as a poultice and then a boneset tea became more popular.

The logger explained that the time to harvest the Boneset plant was when it was blooming. He said it makes a good tea, although it was somewhat on the bitter side. He was first introduced to the herb by some older loggers when he was younger, some twenty years ago. They would drink the tea a couple times a day when taking a break from cutting timber.

Boneset’s popularity went downhill in the early 1900’s and was largely forgotten after a new miracle drug from the bark of the willow tree was introduced. Aspirin was first sold in tablet form in 1915 by the German pharmaceutical company, Bayer. Soon afterward, boneset began to loose it’s importance. Today, aspirin has a special place today in medicine cabinets throughout the world, while the dried leaves and flowers of the boneset, have all but disappeared.

Interestingly, boneset does have a rather intriguing family tree, I discovered. It is in the same family tree as sunflowers, enchinea and daisy. One of it’s closer relatives is another important medicinal plant Joe Pye Weed.

Boneset is known by other names, depending on the region. It is also called agueweed, thoroughwort, and Indian sage. But regardless of it’s name, it was always considered one of the most effective medicinals.

As with any herbal home remedy it is always a good idea to consult with a medical professional. There are some indications that some people may have negative reactions to the herb. Apparently, however, there have been no exhaustive studies completed on it’s value although some valuable properties in the plant have been identified.

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Boneset is harvested when it blossoms The plant should be dried before using; using the plant green, herbal wisdom claims, can be toxic. Most herbalists recommend using the dried flowers and leaves for a tea,  about ½ teaspoon per cup. Most home herbalist recommend three cups per day. For most people, the tea has a bitter taste and will induce sweating by raising the body temperature.

Many herbalists recommend discontinuing use of the tea after a two week period. For some, the plant’s herbal tea relieves symptoms within a twenty-four to 48 hour period.

While for some, boneset could be a valuable home remedy, medical plant, other see another value. Boneset is an excellent landscaping plant, particularly for a “wild” chemical free area of the yard. Boneset, a carefree perennial, can be planted with any number of other plants such as the native asters, Joe Pye Weed, the golden yellow goldenrod and other native plants to provide a wild garden which blooms throughout the seasons.. The added advantage is that boneset, like other native plants will attract many helpful native insects, butterflies and birds.

After the logger left for the day, I went back to field of boneset. I was amazed at the insect activity on the flowers, including the feral honeybees and many others which I did not recognize.

I’ll be cutting some soon to dry out, after all the cold and flu season is approaching, and try to learn about some of the other insects. It sure seems as if boneset, the original “aspirin”, remains a good choice for health benefits, landscaping and for the bees and other insects. It won’t be the forgotten herb growing in a nearby field.

Discover more about wild herbs, gardening, honey bees and more issues of rural concerns at Koyote Hill

August has many meanings. It means school is soon to begin for many. It also means summer is winding down and it won’t be long before the leaves begin to do their magic before the winter snows.

In many regions August is Fair month and harvest season; tomatoes and peppers ( and a myriad of other veggies) are at their peak and sweet corn is abundant. The magical sunflowers are also in full bloom – magical plants which have always had an important place for people since the very beginnings.

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Sunflowers have rather unique history, can bloom in a range of colors, are healthy for people and wildlife. They are the plant of choice for many young children and older adults. Discover more about these amazing plants at Koyote Hill.

Sunflowers are a sign of hope and all that is good on earth. Sure tomatoes and other garden veggies and even pumpkins have their day in the “sun” as well. But the sunflower is life, after all it is the Sun…Flower.

 

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For over some twenty years, garlic, the hardneck variety, has had a special spot in the backyard garden. There are numerous advantages for the home gardener. Homegrown garlic has a far superior taste to supermarket varieties which are normally the softneck variety which, in general, were grown thousands of miles away of even on a different continent. Another big advantage to growing garlic are the numerous health benefits. It is one of the healthiest garden crops around. For thousands of years now, people have used garlic as a medicinal plant as well as a culinary ingredient. Garlic is a low maintenance plant and doesn’t really require a lot of care. A little organic compost and, following the recommendations of a soil test, lime may be necessary (as well as some other minerals and additives depending on the test results). Wildlife, such as the groundhogs, deer and rabbits just seem to stay away from garlic. Nor is it bothered by insects.

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In the Beginning

I got my first garlic bulbs from an older Italian immigrant who gave me a couple basic pointers for successful growing. It was a hardneck variety called Rocambole (there are nine listed other hardneck varieties also available). Rocambole is a good choice for northern gardeners. It is exceptionally winter hardy and even laughs at the cold and snow. In northwestern Pennsylvania, some thirty miles inland from Lake Erie, early spring snow storms are rather commonplace. But the garlic doesn’t mind and will continue growing through the snow as pictured above. Garlic, in northern regions is generally planted in October and begins to grow as soon as warmer weather arrives in late winter. A few nice warm and sunny days is all it takes.

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The Scapes

Usually anytime from mid to late June or early July, the twisting scapes appear on a flower stalk. The scape is a sign that the underground garlic bulb is reaching maturity and in about four weeks will be ready to be dug. There are several uses for the garlic scape or the first garlic harvest. First the scapes are delicious in many dishes from salads, soups and stews, casseroles and pesto. And they are many of the same health benefits. The scapes can also be left to mature on the flower stalk (Note:there is no flower). The scape will swell with about 50 small garlic bulbs, called bulbils, which can then be planted later in the fall. The advantage here is that a gardener can increase the amount of garlic planted, although it takes about two years for the bulbils to reach a respectable size. Another use for the scape is a little extra income. I have never seen garlic scapes in a supermarket. But on occasions have seen them being sold at Farmer’s Markets or roadside stands. Some growers cut the scapes off as soon as they appear. The theory behind this practice is that the underground bulb will grow larger.

Garlic hung for several hours in the shade  before hung in a shed.

There are many online sources which sell garlic, both hardneck and softneck. Or get to know a local garlic grower and buy some of the best bulbs for your garden. Discover more about the magical scapes at The First Garlic Harvest.  Please note: this a a Yahoo Voices Web site which will be discontinued on July 31, 2014.

Or Discover more at Funny Looking but Darn Good  

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The important goldenrods are beginning to bloom in many fields and meadows. The botanical name for this important plant is Solidago, a word derived from the Latin word “solidare” which means to make whole. Goldenrods are native to Europe and parts of Asia; since the colonial days it has become a naturalized plant in North America. Today, in North America, 130 species of goldenrod have been discovered.

Goldenrods did play a role in the American Revolution. After the Boston Tea Party, the early colonist switched to goldenrod as a substitute beverage. It was called “Liberty Tea”.

The amazing goldenrod also provides shelter and food for a wide range of fascinating insects. Perhaps, the best known is the Praying Mantis. Other insects include the Gall Fly (ever wonder about those lumps on the goldenrod stems?), and the Golden Rod Spider.

It’s an essential plant for the honeybees and provides their last meals before winter weather. Other native bees and moths also feast on the plants nectar and pollen.

In mid-August the goldenrods are just beginning to put on their display along with the old time herb Boneset. This white flowering herb can often be found blooming with the golden yellow goldenrods (pictured above).

Long before Big Pharma and synthetic drugs, Boneset was widely used and could be found in many medicine cabinets. In general, it was dried and brewed into a tea to treat colds and flu.

Explore and discover these two important plants:

Sun Medicine

Boneset – The Forgotten American Herb

An August Reminder

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The herb Rosemary, a native to the Mediterranean area (think healthy diet), does not like the northern winters. But it can be potted and placed inside in a sunny window, providing fresh tasty and healthy leaves all winter. It is an attractive plant, which doesn’t require a whole lot of attention as long as there is ample sunlight.

August says: “Think about moving Rosemary inside.”

Discover more

Rosemary – The Ancient Evergreen

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wildflowers

The wet conditions in northwestern Pennsylvania over the last month have created some unique problems for home gardeners and commercial farmers. One of the more unknown problems is the lack of nectar and pollen for the bees. According to Kirk Johnson, the president of the Northwestern PA Beekeepers Asociation, the heavy rains are keeping the bees in their hives. When they are able to venture out, much of the pollen and nectar has been washed out of the flowers.

I am not so sure the pollen and nectar is missing from the Bee Plant or more commonly known as Borage. The star shaped, sky flowers open facing the ground, not facing towards the sky.  Borage is a very useful garden herb for many reasons. And high on the list is that it attracts bees, lots of bees.

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Bees are important in any backyard garden since they help increase pollination and eventually the home harvest. Borage is also useful in the kitchen and is a respected medicinal herb packed with many good vitamins and minerals.

The herb is hardy, carefree and re-seeds itself every spring. For more information on this important herb, Borage.

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The garlic scapes began to twist and turn at the end of June and soon became ready to cut and use in the kitchen. The scapes are the first garlic harvest following last year’s garlic planting. For more information and benefits of garlic scapes, click First Harvest.

Links:

Koyote Hill : A Grin and Bear it Growing Season

Wildflowers Life

Crawford County, PAWhat is Going On

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The Trout Lily

The small trout lilies started to bloom in the woodland areas of northwestern Pennsylvania the last week of April, 2013. Their blossoms are a sure sign of spring and warmer weather ( plants know more than the late winter groundhog). These amazing, perennial  native plants also can be used in those shady and wet spots around the house. For some more insights into these woodland plants, Trout Lily.

Leeks

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The same week that the trout lily emerge, so did the woodland leeks, or ramps. Leeks have many uses in the kitchen and add a certain zest to many foods such as ham, potato soup, and chopped with hot dogs or sausage or in a salad. The wild leeks are nothing like the domesticated, garden or supermarket varieties. More information, Leeks.

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For some of the springtime events in Crawford County in northwestern Pennsylvania, GoCrawford

Learn about a Forest Conference by the Foundation for Sustainable Forest – Property Management

The Union City Dam is a well kept Secret

 

So much for an early spring as once predicted, but spring has finally arrived !

groundhog

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“Mother Nature is in charge,” Jan Woods (pictured above) kept repeating during a recent conversation. Days earlier she had won some notable ribbons for her maple syrup at the Pennsylvania State Farm Show, January 5 – 12. Woods operates Hurry Hill Maple Farm and Museum in Edinboro.

“It seems as if we are tapping the trees earlier and earlier every year,” she said. “Last year was a very abbreviated sap run because the weather stayed above freezing during the night hours and the buds on the trees were swelling. At the Farm Show everyone I talked with had the same story, the 2012 season ended on March 12 because of the warm temperatures.”

Laura Dengler also produces maple syrup and maple products at her sugar shack, How Sweet It Is. Like Woods, she attended the State Farm Show and was impressed with the crowds this year.

“I was just amazed this year at the number of people who attended,” she said.

While Dengler didn’t win any ribbons this year, she was instrumental in helping the local Maple Producers Association win a first place for their maple exhibit.

“This was the second year in a row, we took first place,” she said.

Like Woods, Dengler said the sap appears to be running earlier and earlier every year. This year some trees in the region were tapped the week of the State Farm Show because of the spring-like weather conditions. However, since then Mother Nature returned with a vengeance with cold and snow.

The NW PA Maple Association will also sponsor an Open House Taste and Tour weekend March 16 and 17 this year. For a list of the participating sugar shacks, www.pamaple.org. The Edinboro Historical Society in conjunction with the Taste and Tour weekend will sponsor the Edinboro Maple Festival. It will be held at the Edinboro Fire Hall.

Support local agriculture, buy local.

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Great Maple Syrup Recipes:

Maple Raspberry Vinaigrettecontributed by Janet Woods, Hurry Hill Maple Farm

Hurry Hill Farm

11380 Fry Road

Edinboro, PA  16412

814-734-1358

hurryhill@velocity.net

The Recipe
1/3 cup of olive oil
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
1/3 cup red raspberry vinegar
½ tablespoon dried basil or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
¼ teaspoon salt

Combine ingredients in a bowl and whisk. Store in the refrigerator.
When ready to use, let the mixture come to room temperature. Shake
well before using.
Wonderful on fresh green salad, garden leaf lettuce or cucumbers,
grape tomatoes, and feta cheese.

Maple Thanksgiving Yamscontributed by Laura Dengler – How Sweet It Is Sugar Shack

How Sweet It Is

19868 Greenleaf Dr.

Saegertown, PA  16433

814-763-2777

maplecandy@windstream.net

The Recipe
Layer one
6 cups of fresh yams cooked and mashed
1 cup of maple Sugar
2 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 stick of butter
1/2 cup of milk
1 tsp. vanilla
Mix together and spread in baking dish.

Layer 2
1/2 cup of flour
1 cup of maple sugar
1 cup of pecans (optional)
1/2 stick of butter
Mix together and sprinkle on top of layer 1
Bake @ 350 for 35 minutes.

Links to other rural news:

Koyote Hill

Go Crawford

Subnivia

Brush Piles

Jack Wax – Maple Syrup Candy

 

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Two important events this week: we honor those killed and those still suffering from the September 11, 2001 attacks, their families, friends and loved ones. Tuesday is a day of reflection and pause.

 

On Thursday, September 13, the PA Supreme Court begins to hear arguments on the controversial PA Voter ID laws. The court is evenly divided between three Republicans and three Democrats. The current law could earse hundreds of thousands of votes in the upcoming November elections.

Why the law was actually adopted by the Pennsylvania Republicans in both the House and the Senate under the leadership of Gov. Tom Corbett is foggy and unclear;  it would appear there were political calculations involved. Read, GOP wants to help Romney.  Several other Republican states have also adopted the Voter Suppression laws.

For assistance in helping to understand the law call 866-Our-Vote or type the number in a google search engine. More information on the requirements, here.

A good background read on the constitutionality of the PA Voter Suppression Law from The Atlanti

Health Care Etch a Sketch

Blogs to Read

Koyote Hill

Crawford County News

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