Sunday, December 15, 2019
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Do it yourself and avoid waste

Today I will focus on oral hygiene and cleaning the kitchen and bathroom. When I buy toothpaste it almost always comes in a cardboard box as well as the tube, which annoys me. Why double the packaging costs and waste? And is it necessary to use plastic? I produce a very practical salt for oral hygiene and put it in a used but well cleaned small jar that in this way is used again and doesn’t have to go to the bottle bank. Whatever container you use to store your dental salt in, it can always be reused. Recipe for …

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With cannibals at the table

Our dog is immediately given a bowl of water by Andreia Silva. We’ve come to try this vegetarian restaurant in Tavira at lunchtime. Good. I notice an Argentinian ant. It climbs up my table, walks across my plate and goes back down again. It’s not interested in the plate (from IKEA, Made in Portugal), since it’s still empty. This little ant is special. The species came into Europe via a port in southern France, then spread through Spain to Tavira, reaching as far as Silves and Monchique and from Aljezur to Cape Saint Vincent. It’s a little fighter. There are …

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A pot with many good things from your garden

Our goal is to become self sufficient with our food. We need five years to achieve this. We will reach this goal in five steps. In the first year, we worked the land, clearing it and creating a fine tilth, removing the stones and weeds. At the same time, we composted, then used compost as a fertilizer for the first sowing in the second year: potatoes and onions, peas and beans, tomatoes and peppers and many more things. We also would recommend a permaculture course at Quinta Vale da Lama in Lagos. For today’s recipe, almost all of the ingredients …

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Made by Choices

Vânia Ribeiro (aged 34) has a degree in Psychology and an interest in alternative medicine. For four years, she took a course in Chinese medicine and massage. During that time, she discovered naturopathy. For health reasons, she felt the need to change her diet. She called the consumption of meat and fish into question and started a blog (and her own Youtube channel), which, some years later, now has 100.000 visitors in Portugal. Vegan life is presented on it every day, with new recipes, articles about health, photos, films and documentaries. It is called “Made by Choices”… Author Vânia Ribeiro …

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Climate-neutral living in Portugal

Recently, Monchique was in the spotlight when the forest fires were being reported in the international press. The reason why these forest fires repeatedly rage across the Serra de Monchique and its neighbouring regions is closely linked to the investments of Semapa SA and its subsidiaries Navigator/Portucel and the industrial eucalyptus monoculture that is practised in an area of 2,500 km² to the North, both in Nave Redonda and São Teotónio (North-west), as well as in São Marcos da Serra (North-east). The main responsibility lies with the pulp producer Navigator (Semapa AG), which guarantees private producers the sale of their …

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The transition begins inside me

Greenhouse gas emissions, caused by agriculture, transport and industry, disturb the balance of the climate, and ultimately Earth’s entire atmospheric system. The destruction caused by forest fires, which are practically impossible to extinguish and aggravated by strong winds, is enormous. Torrential rainfall, the result of climate change, destroys roads and bridges, costing taxpayers millions. Hail, drought and fires destroy the agricultural products of a country … Example 1 A forest of eucalyptus trees that are cut down every eight years by their owner to sell the wood and then allowed to grow again, is an investment that is neither ecological, …

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55 spontaneous species that cure

A handful of plants

55 spontaneous species that cure This is one of those books that are a must-have on the shelves of any plant lover, of anyone with an interest in alternative nutrition. With prefaces by the phytotherapist Anne McIntyre and the biologist and researcher Célia Cabral, Uma mão cheia de plantas – 55 espécies espontâneas que curam (a handful of plants – 55 spontaneous species that cure) is a guide to exploring 55 wild plants with surprising therapeutic properties. With technical information and images by Fernanda Botelho, this work provides the common name, the scientific name, the botanical family, the history, description …

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Four for the Climate

How our family tries to lead a CO2-neutral life A family of four sits at the table having dinner. As they do, the two adults talk to the children about a somewhat boring topic: climate change. Their 13-year-old daughter had come home from school, had sat down at the computer and played with the WWF’s footprint calculator. She wanted to work out her family’s ecological footprint. The result for this four-person household: 42 tonnes of CO2 per year. The evening’s discussion gradually develops into a family project. Each of them wants to actively save on CO2 emissions in order to …

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Plants on our path

When we go for a walk in the countryside we are far from understanding the value of the magnificent plants that live in the soil. Over and beyond their beauty, they can accompany us on our life’s journey, protecting our health and healing the body and mind at times of recuperation. Each year, more than 2,000 new plants are discovered. They are used in medicine, food, the environment, clothing, biofuels and the making of poisons. At present there are about 5,500 plants used for human consumption. A short four-kilometre walk in the heart of Monchique with the specialist in wild …

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20 Rules for regenerative water management

How we can become a part of the water cycle, using water without using it up. Only plant a variety of indigenous tree and bush species together; Fit gutters and build water tanks to collect the water from roofs; Only farm organically; don’t use any agro-chemicals in the garden, instead use goat or horse dung; Don’t seal off any areas in the garden or farm (e.g. with concrete) or cover them with plastic sheeting. The rainwater must be able to seep into the ground; Break up monocultures in the garden too, at least with hedges, or leave a corner of …

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