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    I’m quite new to canning, so there are still things I’m not sure about.

    When you’re pressure canning, you really have to keep an eye on the gauge, esp on an electric stove because the thermostat makes the heat go up and down.

    When the pressure drops — say from 11 to 8 pounds, as an example — do you guesstimate how long it was below 11, and then add those minutes to the required time? Sweet potatoes, advised time is 65 minutes at 11 pounds pressure. Do I add 10 minutes (or whatever, for a total of 75 minutes) for the time the pressure was below 11?

    Yes, I DO come up with some of the darndest questions…. so what’s your point? ๐Ÿ˜€ :rolleyes:


    I bought some boxes of these wooden matches for my wood-burning stove. The box has changed and half of it notes how “green” they are now, “sourced from responsible forests”. But they failed to mention how poor the business ends of the matches have become…

    Not only do most of them not light when I strike them on normal things like the plate on the front of the wood stove or a red clay brick, some of them don’t even light when I strike them on the BOX striker strip!!! And the phosphorus tip sometimes falls off, too. Made in America… maybe China could do better? :angry:

    If you put some in a container to prep for a life-threatening situation, be sure to pick through the bunch and choose the ones with the biggest tips. And include a striker strip, for insurance.

    (At least they didn’t have the gall to put a “NEW & IMPROVED” banner on the box.)


    LawnHelp, it would be helpful if you mentioned what “very warm area” you live in. SoCal? TX? FL?

    There are cool-season crops and warm-season crops. Try planting your cool-season crops for growing in the winter, depending on your minimum temps. Things like lettuce, peas and spinach often do better in winter than in spring in warmer areas.

    You could also contact your local Cooperative Extension Service Office and ask for advice, or they may have info already posted on their site: http://www.csrees.usda.gov/Extension/

    There are two sets and sources of hardiness zones, the USDA zones are only for cold limitations; the Sunset Garden Book for the western states and the Southern Living Garden Book for the South, both address cold and heat issues. Notice that the zone numbers are different, so don’t mix them up.

    I guess the rest of the states are on their own.


    What’s the feeling on re-canning jam? I bought four 4-lb jars of marmalade, and would like to reduce them to pint jars.

    I’m thinking it would be be okay due to the high sugar content (it’s regular jam), but I’ve been wrong before. (Really!) ๐Ÿ˜€

    [Afterthought} Would it effect the pectin?


    Canning jars used to come in reusable boxes, but not any more.

    Do you look for the appropriate-sized boxes and store them in them, or what?

    And I live in earthquake country. Any tips welcome.


    I remembered that someone here posted about a dimwit attorney who poisoned himself with botulism, and I thought he was from Seattle, so I wanted to embed his name in my brain, just in case I ever needed an attorney. I don’t want someone THAT stupid!

    BTW, his name is Michael O’Connell, for you PNW residents.

    But searching for him, I ran across an interesting site called ‘NW Edible Life’, and she has all the facts on Botulism down to what you need to know: http://www.nwedible.com/2013/07/how-not-to-die-from-botulism-what-home-canners-need-to-know-about-the-worlds-most-deadly-toxin.html

    I’m sure you’ve seen people posting all over the web that if you suspect your food might be contaminated with Botulism, all you have to do is boil it for 10 minutes and it’s good to eat.

    THAT’S A LIE! And a deadly one, at that.


    This comes the day after I met an employee at WallyWorld who told me that she has canned everything using the water-bath method for 20 years without killing anyone. Although, considering the stupidity level of the local hospital, she could have sent several people there and they probably wouldn’t have been able to figure out what was wrong, and they just ended up in a morgue drawer. ๐Ÿ™

    Cynical? ME??? Really? ๐Ÿ‘ฟ


    I opened a jar of self-canned chicken meat for dinner (delicious!) and when the jar was empty, I filled it with soapy hot water and let it soak. The next morning, there were still many shreds of meat firmly stuck to the inside of the jar.

    Since this was a wide-mouth pint jar, no problem to clean out. But what do you folks use to clean something like this from a narrow (regular) neck quart jar?

    Just asking for future reference. Thanks!


    I live in the humid PNW, where rust and mold are the norm.

    What is the best way to store unrusted jar rings so they don’t rust? A neighbor gave me a smallish cardboard box of rings, and not one was rust-free.

    I have a couple of those smaller empty cookie tins — would that be an option? Toss in a few moisture absorbers?


    I only want responses from people who have pets. The rest of you who have no pets, only half-baked theories and farm animals, please pass this thread.

    If things really go downhill relatively fast, what do you intend to do with your pets? Have you stocked up food and intend to hold onto them as long as possible? Do you plan to put them down? Turn them loose to fend for themselves? Save them for eating later?

    I see a dilemma coming up, and wonder if you have any ideas that I haven’t thought of. ๐Ÿ™


    I’ve been collecting canning jar lids, and wonder how to store them so the seals don’t dry out. I did a search here, and the main suggestion was to seal them in a Food Saver bag. But I don’t have one of those.

    I’m thinking that I could remove the regular lids from their boxes and drop them into a quart canning jar and screw on a lid. I also have a large peanut butter jar that will hold the wide-mouth lids.

    Do you think this would be okay? Or is there some monumental flaw that is obvious to everyone but me?


    Salad greens and sprouts are about the best you’ll get indoors. You’re not going to be growing the higher-calorie crops that you’ll need to survive.

    The high-calorie crops need intense sunlight and warmth to produce. I can’t even grow some of those crops OUTDOORS, IN SUMMER!

    So don’t waste your money on high-intensity lights, start buying and stocking food, and seeds for growing outdoors in appropriate weather.

    The only high-calorie, high-protein food you can reliably grow with some extra hours of normal lighting and heat is eggs from a few chickens and ducks.


    This was invented by a young English woman for use in Africa. It looks home-reproduceable.


    It says it will keep the temp down to 6ยบC (43ยบF). I wanted to compare it to how cool a zeer pot will get, and ran across this link that said it would only get that cool under certain conditions of ambient temperature and humidity: http://rebuildingcivilization.com/content/busting-myths-about-zeer-pot

    Has anyone ever tried anything like this? Or even zeer pots?


    A slow sand filter should take care of raccoon roundworm (Baylisascaris spp) eggs. These suckers big for parasite eggs, even larger than dog roundworm eggs. They are 80-85 ยตm x 65-70 ยตm (microns) in size. Basic filters should have no problem catching them.

    Young children are the most likely victims of this parasite, due to their habit of picking things up off the ground and then sticking their hands in their mouths. There is a treatment to kill the adult worms, but it doesn’t kill the larvae — I have never heard that anything will. The larvae can produce brain damage, destruction of the retina of the eye and possibly death.

    Raccoon poop looks similar to that of a medium-sized dog. If you look closely, you may see berry seeds or the hard parts of insects in it. Also, raccoons prefer to defecate repeatedly in the same place, at the base of trees or woodpiles, along fences, on roofs or in unsealed attics. If you see droppings under a tree or along a fence, shovel it up, taking some of the soil below it also, and discard in a safe place, or burn it. The only way to kill the eggs is with a lye solution, a propane flamer, or building a fire on the spot (which you can’t do on your roof).

    If you plan to collect water off your roof, go up there and look for signs that they have been there, and eliminate their access. If you do find them on your roof, I would either run all of the collected water through a filter, or use another source for water collection, like sheet plastic, as the eggs themselves are sticky and hard to remove from any surface (and since you can’t see them with the naked eye, you can’t know if you’ve succeeded in removing all of them or not).

    The eggs become infective in 14-30 days, and the outer membrane of the egg hardens to the point where the eggs are practically impervious to extremes of heat or cold, and can survive for several years (possibly many years) in the soil. The eggs are sticky, and some will be left behind if you just pick them up with a paper towel or something. If you even think you’ve possibly made contact with raccoon droppings, stop what you’re doing and wash your hands repeatedly.

    Dogs can also serve as the hosts for the adult stage of this parasite.

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