Archive | March, 2015

Banyan Super Hypnosis Training Course Comes to Portland

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

Train for a career in hypnosis with 5-PATH® Hypnotherapy and 7th Path Self-Hypnosis in an accelerated 100-hour professional hypnotherapy certification course, weekdays from April 20 to May 1.
In this course, learn the 5-PATH® systematic approach to hypnotherapy and join ranks with some of the best hypnotists in the world. 5 Phase advanced Transformational Hypnosis is a powerful combination of techniques that will empower you to achieve powerful results with clients in just a few sessions. Participants will master the tools and will also learn the optimum sequencing for consistently maximized results, while quickly building confidence in your skills.
The 7th Path Self-Hypnosis, which is a mind-body-spirit holistic approach to self-hypnosis, will also be taught. Clients will enjoy this approach as it allows the cause of their issue(s) to be targeted in just a few minutes of self-hypnosis up to three times a day. This method is the first self-hypnosis system designed to actively “de-bug” one’s mental programming for life optimization.

Call 503-289-3614 for a 30-minute free consultation to see if this course is right for you or how to register. Tuition fee is $2,800; all materials and certifications are included in this price. For more information, visit

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Hay House Brings I Am Light Conference to Portland April 19

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

Join best-selling authors Dr. Wayne Dyer and Anita Moorjani for I Am Light, a day-long seminar to free yourself from the chains surrounding limited, often self-sabotaging thinking.
In addition to discovering and living from your impersonal self, this seminar is an opportunity to:

  • Let go of your ego-dominated, controlling persona
  • Free yourself from pervasive, ego-driven thoughts
  • Cleanse your perception of your being
  • Come to feel, know and rely on your divinely-connected self

Every one of us has both a personal self as well as an impersonal aspect to our being. Our personal self, or our personality, is being directed at all times by our mind and our five senses.
This seminar is being offered to assist attendees in fulfilling their one true purpose for being here in the first place. Those burning desires that we know and feel have nothing to do with our ego/personality. Our five senses cannot create a desire, to our personality; they are a conundrum because they cannot be seen, heard, smelled or even touched. You Are Light. Allow yourself to experience your true essence as a divine spark of the divine.

For reservations and more information about the I Am Light Conference in Portland, visit and search I Am Light, Portland.

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Study Says Menopause Symptoms Last Longer Than Previously Expected.

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

A collective groan (or drenching sweat) was likely elicited by millions of menopausal women after a new study published February in JAMA reported that hot flashes, night sweats and other symptoms of perimenopause/menopause typically affect women much longer than previously thought, a median of 7.4 years. Considering vasomotor symptoms (hot flashes and/or night sweats) are the number one complaint reported by women during perimenopause/menopause, these new findings are important for several reasons. First, this study challenges the notion that perimenopausal/menopausal symptoms minimally affect women’s quality of life and can be easily remedied with short-term approaches. While hormone replacement therapy remains the conventional standard of care for the treatment of menopause induced hot flashes, there are also a variety of non-hormonal natural treatment options available to women.
A Woman’s Time is an integrative natural medicine clinic located in northwest Portland that specializes in perimenopause/menopause treatment options, including bio-identical hormones and a variety of natural medicines. A Woman’s Time is currently seeking potential candidates for a research study evaluating the Vietnamese herb, Crinum latifolium, and its effectiveness in treating hot flashes and/or night sweats in menopausal women. If you are a postmenopausal female (no menses for at least 12 months) and are currently experiencing five or more hot flashes and/or night sweats per day, contact A Woman’s Time clinic and speak to one of their physicians to determine eligibility for the study.

For more information, call 503-222-2322 or visit

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Body-Mind Centering®

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen, the founder of Body-Mind Centering® (BMCxx) will be presenting a six-hour workshop, “New Frontiers in Body-Mind Centering®,” at Reed College, July 23-24 as part of the 30th Annual Body-Mind Centering Association (BMCA) Conference taking place from July 22-26.
Cohen was a dancer, turned occupational therapist, turned experiential body mind researcher and is known for her somatic exploration of the body brain using movement, touch sound and imagery. Her understanding of the body systems, development, embryology and cellular consciousness is based on her experience and knowledge of science, anatomy and physiology.
Those who practice BMC embody developmental patterns and tissues under the skin. BMC recognizes the body as the teacher and permits the shifting of patterns and habits through somatic experience.
For more information about the conference, which will feature over 75 brilliant offerings including experiential workshops and performances by masters in the somatic field, visit Register early for discounted rates.

To learn more about Body-Mind Centering, visit Contact Ellen Ferris at with any questions

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Festival of Angels Comes to Clark County

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

Festival of Angels Comes to Clark County
In a recent Associated Press poll, more than 8 in 10 Americans believe in angels, and that belief is so strong that many have the feeling that someone is watching over them. Explore this belief and sensation with hundreds of others at the Festival of Angels Expo. There will be vendors, artists, experts, seminars, alternative healers and plenty of discussions about angels.
“I think many of us have felt a loving presence in our lives, and many people want to explore their belief in angels, spirituality and have in-depth discussions,” said Michelle Dunsford, event organizer. “We are creating a first ever event here in southwest Washington, and we hope people enjoy the free mind, body and spirit workshops with national speakers, vendors, dancing and entertainment.”
The event will take place April 18-19 at the Clark County Event Center at the Fairgrounds, in Ridgefield, Washington, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $10 for adults; kids 15 and younger are free. Receive a discount of $2 off with canned food donation at the door.
For a complete list of speakers visit “Above all, the Festival of Angels has been designed to be fun and whimsical with performances, music, dances and presentations to provide a joyous and fun celebration,” noted Dunsford.

Presented by the International Society of Angels, a nonprofit organization that offers a one-stop resource center for anyone desiring to grow in their understanding of angels.

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Dogs with Library Cards Kids Love Reading to Animals by Sandra Murphy

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

The goal of Reading Education Assistance Dogs (READ), launched in Salt Lake City, Utah, in 1999 as part of Intermountain Therapy Animals, is to improve children’s literacy skills with the mentoring help of certified therapy teams. Its reach has spread through library programs across the U.S. and Canada and internationally, with other therapy groups following suit

“Doctors told the parents of an 11-year-old autistic son that he would never read… so quit trying to teach him,” says Suzanne Vening, an organic farmer in Jackson, Mississippi.“The doctor didn’t count on Adam, my Australian shepherd.” Abused and abandoned before being adopted by Vening, she had trained him for therapy work.

Vening knew nothing about autistic or learning-disabled children, but she knew Adam could work miracles. The boy made eye contact with Adam during his library visit and read a few words. His parents were overjoyed as his reading continued to improve. “It’s hard to include children with special needs in many family activities,” Vening says. “A library is a place the whole family can enjoy.”

She advises, “Designate a safe corner where a child can escape if feeling overwhelmed. After entering the room, handlers should sit on the floor with the dog lying beside them. A standing dog can cause too much excitement. It’s important to trust that your therapy dog will know how to approach a child that’s afraid, has tremors or can’t sit up or sit still.”

“An animal’s heartbeat seems to call to kids,” observes Rachael Barrera, a children’s librarian at Brook Hollow Public Library, in San Antonio. “Dogs have come here once a week for more than a year. Now older kids that are comfortable with the reading program are showing younger ones how to choose a book.”

At California’s Benicia Public Library, kids read to Honey, a friendly brown dog, on Wednesday afternoons. Sheila Jordan, managing editor and owner of Booklandia, founded in Bend, Oregon, says her 8-year-old, Chase, found it difficult to concentrate because of ADHD. “The Tales and Tails program was a big help. All summer, we went every week and chose books he said the dog would love.” Jordan’s reward was a more focused child; Chase’s reward was a dog of his own last fall.

North Carolina’s Charlotte Mecklenburg Library offers 14,000 free programs a year throughout its 20 locations, including Paws to Read. Librarian Cathy Cartledge, reading program coordinator for the Morrison Regional branch, shares this story from Jaylee’s mom, Jill.

“Jaylee was tutored in reading for a year. After she also began reading to Zoey, a Great Pyrenees, or Hunter, a golden retriever, I saw improvement in fluency, confidence and enjoyment. It worked miracles compared with the hours and money spent for tutoring,” her mom remarks.

The Mount Prospect Library, near Chicago, has an age requirement for its Tales to Tails program. “Rachael, 8, will hardly put a book down now,” says her mom, Nicole Sasanuma, a senior associate with Business Communications & Advocacy, in Northbrook, Illinois. “Her sister, Emi, 6, is anxious for her next birthday so she ‘can read to doggies,’ too.”

Reading programs aren’t limited to libraries or schools. Jean Maclean, of Lompoc, California, trains her two dogs in agility and rally skills. For a change of pace, they visit the Chumash Learning Center, in Santa Ynez, once a month. The Chumash people value education from both its elders and teachers outside the tribe. Maclean relates that Donny, age 11, was afraid of dogs until he met hers, after which his teachers saw his reading improve three levels in one semester.

Animals help kids relax and become teachers to the dogs. Researchers at the University of California, Davis have found that reading skills for kids that read to dogs during a 10-week literacy program improved by 12 percent. Children in the same program that didn’t do the same showed no improvement.

Dogs and other pets prove that reading out loud doesn’t have to be scary. All it takes is a good book and a good listener.

Connect with freelance writer Sandra Murphy at

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Strong Winds, Strong Roots What Trees Teach Us About Life by Dennis Merritt Jones

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

A great experiment in the desert called the biodome created a living environment for human, plant and animal life. A huge glass dome was constructed to house an artificial, controlled environment with purified air and water, healthy soil and filtered light. The intent was to afford perfect growing conditions for trees, fruits and vegetables, as well as humans.

People lived in the biodome for many months at a time and everything seemed to do well with one exception. When the trees grew to a certain heights, they would topple over. It baffled scientists until they realized they forgot to include the natural element of wind. Trees need wind to blow against them because it causes their root systems to grow deeper, which supports the tree as it grows taller.

Who among us doesn’t long for a perfect growing environment for ourselves, with no disruptions from outside influences? We strive to avoid the time of contrast and tension, when life’s daily challenges push against us. When they do, the normal tendency is to curse them. If trees could talk, would we hear them curse the wind each time they encountered a storm?

We can learn a great deal from nature’s wisdom at work if we are open to the lesson. Watch how a tree bends and sways gracefully when the wind blows against it. It does not stand rigid, resisting the flow of energy. It does not push back. The tree accepts the strong wind as a blessing that helps it grow.

Such experiences develop our character and deepen our spiritual roots. When we grow deep, we too stand tall.

Dennis Merritt Jones, D.D., is the author of Your Re-Defining Moments, The Art of Uncertainty and The Art of Being, the source of this essay. He has contributed to the human potential movement and field of spirituality as a minister, teacher, coach and lecturer for 30 years. Learn more at


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Spring Greening Easy Ways to Detox a House by Lane Vail

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

For most individuals, odorous chemicals are simply unpleasant. For those sensitive and susceptible, however, even common chemical exposures may evoke a toxicant-induced loss of tolerance (TILT) marked by multiple-system symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, autoimmune disease, asthma, depression and food intolerance. Since the post-World War II expansion of petrochemicals, the incidence of TILT has increased dramatically, says Claudia Miller, a medical doctor, researcher and professor at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston and co-author of Chemical Exposures: Low Levels and High Stakes.

“Fortunately, public awareness has also grown significantly in the last few years,” says Rick Smith, Ph.D., a Canadian environmentalist who co-authored Toxin Toxout. “Now companies and governments worldwide are moving toward making safer products.”

We can support progress by leveraging some practical tips in greening our home.

Start somewhere. Many volatile organic compounds (VOC) that include formaldehyde and benzene are concealed in household items such as couches, chairs, particleboard furniture, mattresses, box springs, carpeting, rugs, synthetic flooring, wallpaper and paint. Green TV host and Fresh Living author Sara Snow implores us not to become overwhelmed, disheartened or fearful. “Creating a healthy home is a gradual process that doesn’t require throwing all the furniture out,” she advises. Start by scrutinizing labels and choosing not to bring new toxins in.

For example, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is widely found to be associated with reproductive toxicity and is found in many waterproofed and flexible plastics. Select PVC-free toys, shower curtain liners and mattress covers.

In the kitchen, avoid potentially carcinogenic perfluorinated chemicals (PFC) found in nonstick coatings of pots and pans. Toss the Teflon when it scratches, says Snow, and upgrade to stainless steel or cast iron. Weed out bisphenols, the DNA-disrupting chemicals found in plastics and epoxy resin can liners. Even “BPA-free” products likely contain alternative and equally harmful substances, according to a recent study published in Chemosphere. Choose clear glass instead of plastic containers.

When remodeling, look for zero-VOC items, Miller says, plus materials free of stain-resistant sprays and flame retardants whose efficacy is questionable. Consider natural fiber rugs like jute or wool. Forest Stewardship Council-certified hardwoods or alternative flooring like cork or glass tile are safer investments in long-term well-being.

Clean green. Conventional cleaners are among the worst offenders, and even some “eco-cleaners” can be deceptively unsafe, says Smith. He recommends avoiding antibacterial products containing triclosan, which proliferates antibiotic-resistant bacteria that prolong and exacerbate illnesses, as well as phthalates, a chemical oil that carries artificial aromas and has been repeatedly linked to cancer and abnormal fetal development. “Even so-called natural fragrances are often complex petrochemicals that outgas and contaminate the air,” notes Miller.

Snow advises formulating products at home using staple pantry ingredients, including distilled white vinegar for disinfecting, baking soda for scouring, liquid castile soap for sudsing, lemon juice for degreasing and olive oil for polishing.

Freshen with fresh air. Americans spend about 90 percent of their time amid indoor air pollutants that are significantly more concentrated than outdoor pollutants, the EPA reports. “Most energy-efficient homes are well sealed with ventilation systems that recirculate indoor air, so opening the windows helps dilute accumulated airborne toxins,” says Miller. Snow further recommends bringing air-purifying plants into the home such as Gerbera daisies, bamboo palms and English ivy.

Vacuum and dust. Vacuuming with a high-efficiency particulate arrestance (HEPA) filter and dusting with a moist cloth eliminates allergens such as pet dander, mites, pollen and mold, and helps remove phthalates, flame retardants, lead and pesticides that “latch onto house dust and accumulate in dust bunnies,” says Smith.

Weed out lawn chemicals. “Organophosphate pesticides are profoundly neurotoxic,” says Miller, especially to the developing brains of children. Instead try integrated pest management, which involves controlling pests’ food sources and applying non-toxic deterrents. Eliminating potentially carcinogenic herbicides might mean managing more weeds, says Snow, but it’s worth it. 

Eat green. “Buying produce as close to its source as possible, from a farmer or farmers’ market, provides threefold benefits,” says Snow—less wasteful packaging, reduced exposure to chemical plastics and greater concentration of health-promoting nutrients. Buy in bulk and favor glass containers or rectangular cardboard cartons. 

Take tests. Radon, an invisible, odorless gas that can emanate from the ground and accumulate in homes, annually causes 21,000 U.S. lung cancer deaths, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Lead, a neurotoxin that may occasionally leach from home water pipes, can also hide in pre-1978 paint. Testing for both and implementing reduction or precautionary measures is simple, advises Smith. Most hardware stores stock test kits.

Take action. Join with other concerned citizens by launching a pertinent petition at; campaigning with organizations like the Environmental Working Group ( or Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families (; and supporting cleaner, greener companies with family purchases.

Lane Vail is a freelance writer and blogger at

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Earth in Peril Children Confront Climate Change by Avery Mack

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

This month, Home Box Office (HBO), in collaboration with New York City’s American Museum of Natural History, will air the new documentary, Saving My Tomorrow. Scientists representing the museum discuss how temperature change affects life on Planet Earth, but the majority of voices are those of children. Their words cry out for universal action to prevent them from inheriting what they believe is a dying planet in desperate need of healing.


In the Atmosphere


“We need to know the truth, because adults clearly aren’t doing enough to stop this.”

~ Zoe, age 12


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA recently announced that last year was the hottest in 135 years of recordkeeping, with rising ocean temperatures driving the global heat index.


Nine of the 10 hottest years have occurred since 2000. The odds of this taking place randomly are about 650 million to 1, especially without an El Nino influence, according to University of South Carolina statistician John Grego.


“The globe is warmer than it has been in the last 100 years,” says climate scientist Jennifer Francis, Ph.D., of Rutgers University, in New Jersey. “Any wisps of doubt that human activities are at fault are now gone with the wind.”


At Sea


“We do more damage to the planet than we think.”

~ Peri, age 9


In the same 100 years, sea levels have risen seven inches, mostly due to expansion as the water warms. “We have over 2 million preserved fish in our collection. We study them to see the effect of temperature change,” says Melanie Stiassnny, Ph.D., curator of ichthyology at the museum. “The mummichog fish is less than an inch long. It’s a bottom feeder and that’s where pollution like mercury lies. When the water is warm, fish eat more and mercury is stored in their bodies.” The contaminants move up the food chain, bringing the effects of pollution to our dinner table.


A 2006 study by Nicola Beaumont, Ph.D., with the Plymouth Marine Laboratory UK, has found that 29 percent of the oceans’ edible fish and seafood species have declined by 90 percent in the last 100 years. The international team of ecologists and economists led by Boris Worm, Ph.D. of Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, predict total saltwater fish extinction by 2048 due to overfishing, pollution, habitat loss and climate change. Rising ocean acidity due to absorption of increasing carbon dioxide and other emissions from burning fossil fuels impacts creatures large and small, like dissolving the shell of the tiny sea butterfly, a vital link in the ocean’s food chain.


Americans currently consume 4.5 billion pounds of seafood each year.


On Land


“Each species was put here for a reason. We are the caretakers.”

~ a youth at a climate rally


Scientists look back to look ahead. Henry David Thoreau fell in love with the wilderness around Concord, Massachusetts, 160 years ago. From his renowned journals, scientists know when flowers like the pink lady slipper (Cypripedium acaule), bird’s-foot violets (Viola pedata) or golden ragworts (Packera aurea) used to bloom. Today, with temperatures six degrees Fahrenheit warmer than in Thoreau’s time, these species now bloom two weeks earlier. The Canada lily (Lilium canadense), plentiful before, is now rare, unable to adapt to the new reality.


Paul Sweet, collections manager of the museum’s ornithology department, studies “skins” (stuffed birds). He says, “The skins show us how birds lived years ago.” In just the past 100 years, bird species that have gone extinct range from the ivory-billed woodpecker (Campephilus principalis) to the once-abundant passenger pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius) and Carolina parakeet (Conuropsis carolinensis).


In Colorado, 70 percent of the lodgepole pines have been lost, with pines in other states also in trouble. Pine beetles feed on the pines. Historically, winter brings death to both the beetles and weakened trees, which fall to feed a renewed forest. Due to warmer temperatures, the beetles are living longer and migrating to higher altitudes to kill more trees. Forest fires follow the dry timber line.


“I don’t have time to grow up before becoming an activist.”

~ Ta’Kaiya, age 12

“Get your parents involved.”

~ Teakahla, age 11


Children are more informed now than ever before. Schools offer classes on ecology, the environment, global warming and climate change. Disasters are instant news, constantly streaming through digital media. Kids are aware that they need adults to work with them to keep Earth habitable.


HBO will air all four parts of Saving My Tomorrow starting April 22. Check local listings for times and dates—and watch as a family. See the trailer at


Connect with freelance writer Avery Mack at

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Home-Grown Organic Made Easy 10 Time-Saving Tips for a Healthy Garden by Barbara Pleasant

Posted on 31 March 2015 by Jason

Organic gardening experts share strategies for growing a great garden and having a life, too.


The arrival of planting season has a stunning effect on veggie gardeners. We talk to our seedlings as if they were children, and don’t mind working until dark if that’s what it takes to get the fingerling potatoes in the ground. Then, complications like crabgrass and cabbageworms appear, and keeping up with all the details feels impossible. We can lighten looming chores by using these time-saving tips, which will reduce later workloads when storms and the hot summer sun threaten to squelch the magic.


Mulch to reduce watering and prevent weeds. “You can cut your watering time in half by mulching crops with a three-to-four-inch layer of straw or shredded leaves,” says Niki Jabbour, award-winning author of The Year-Round Vegetable Gardener and Groundbreaking Food Gardens: 73 Plans That Will Change the Way You Grow Your Garden. “Crops like tomatoes, potatoes, kale, broccoli, cucumbers and squash all benefit from a deep mulch, which reduces the need to water and also prevents weeds, saving even more time.”

Grow herbs in convenient containers. Family cooks will harvest kitchen herbs every day, in all kinds of weather, so don’t waste footsteps. Grow some parsley, basil and other herbs in large containers near the kitchen door.


Try promising perennials. Plant them once, and vegetables like asparagus and rhubarb come back year after year in cold winter climates like the Midwest and Northeast. Where winters are mild, artichokes or chayote (pear squash) are long-lived and productive. Many resilient herbs will return each spring, too, including sage, mints, thyme and oregano. Tarragon and marjoram make trusty perennial herbs in the Sun Belt.


Stock up on organic seeds. “As a year-round vegetable gardener, I try to come up with a list of all the seeds I’ll need for every season when I place annual seed orders,” Jabbour says. “That way, I will place fewer orders and have everything on hand at the proper planting time, saving both time and money.” Organic seeds in consumer seed catalogs and retail racks won’t be genetically modified or treated with pesticides.


Be generous with organic compost. Each time you plant, mix in organic compost along with a balanced organic fertilizer. Food crops grown in organically enriched soil are better able to resist challenges from pests and diseases, which simplifies summer tasks.


Grow flowers to attract beneficial insects. Reducing or eliminating pesticides and increasing plantings of flowers can radically improve the balance between helpful and harmful insects in a garden. Horticulturist Jessica Walliser, co-host of Pittsburgh’s The Organic Gardeners KDKA radio show and author of Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden, recommends starting with sweet alyssum, an easy-to-grow annual that can be tucked into the edges of beds or added to mixed containers.


“The tiny blossoms of sweet alyssum are adept at supporting several species of the non-stinging parasitic wasps that help keep aphids and other common pests in check,” Jessica says. In warm climates where they are widely grown, crape myrtles have been found to serve as nurseries for lady beetles, lacewings and other beneficial insects.


Protect plants with fabric barriers. Pest insects seeking host plants won’t find cabbage or kale if they’re hidden beneath hoops covered with fine-mesh fabric like wedding net (tulle) or garden fabric row cover. “Cover the plants the day they are transplanted into the garden,” advises Walliser. As long as the edges are securely tucked in, row covers will also protect plants from wind, hail, rabbits and deer.


Hoe briefly each day. Commit 10 minutes a day to hoeing. While slicing down young weeds, hill up soil over potatoes or clean up beds ready to be replanted. Look out for small problems to correct before they become big ones.


No more misplaced tools. Time is often wasted searching for lost weeders, pruning shears and other hand tools, which are easier to keep track of when painted in bright colors or marked with colored tape. Jabbour uses a tool stash basket placed at the garden entrance.


Stop to smell the flowers. Use moments saved to sit quietly, relax and soak up the sights, sounds and smells of the garden. Pausing to listen to the birds or watch a honeybee work a flower is part of the earned reward of any healthy garden that can’t be measured by the pound.


Barbara Pleasant, the author of numerous green-thumb books, including Starter Vegetable Gardens: 24 No-Fail Plans for Small Organic Gardens, grows vegetables, herbs and fruits in Floyd, Virginia. Connect at

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