Time For Spring Cleaning!

Hi Folks,

It’s officially spring now, and you know what that means—time for spring cleaning! Last weekend, I mixed up a batch of my All-Purpose Cleaner: 2 cups of rubbing alcohol, 1 tbsp. of ammonia, 1 tbsp. of dishwashing liquid, and 2 quarts of water mixed in a bucket, and poured into a hand-held sprayer bottle. I used this concoction to clean the living room windows, kitchen counters, bathroom tile, and just about any other hard surface.

I also spent a couple of hours cleaning up my yard. I ran all the leaves, tree branches, and other compostable materials through my shredder, and used it to start a new compost pile. Then I doused the pile with my Compost Feeder Tonic: 1/2 can of beer, 1/2 can of cola, and 1/2 cup of dishwashing liquid mixed in a 20 gallon hose-end sprayer. I’ll give the pile a dose of this tonic once a month, and it’ll turn into black, crumbly, nutrient-rich compost before you know it!

But unfortunately, all that work left me with an achin’ back. Luckily, I had one of my reusable ice packs stashed in the freezer for just such an occasion. They’re easy to make—simply mix 1 part rubbing alcohol with 2 parts water, and pour into a heavy-duty zip-top plastic freezer bag. Squeeze all the air out, seal the bag up, and tuck it away in the freezer. Because alcohol doesn’t freeze, the contents will be slushy rather than rock hard—and all the more comfortable on your achin’ body. And when you’re sore-no-more, just pop it back in the freezer for next time.


  1. Jerry: I started my compost last spring. Was excited about adding it to my garden beds this year and went out to turn it and it is loaded with humongous grubworms. I have some normal size grubs all over my yard. Any way to get rid of these things before I begin planting in the Oklahoma claypits? selahV

  2. Hi. I bought your book “Backyard Problem Solver” and I just love it!. I’m ready to do some of the tonics but I am lacking two ingreditents. What is fish fertilizer and pelletized gypsom and where can I purchase them? Thanks again.

  3. love the ice pack tip…my poor achin’ back wishes Id known about it years ago!

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