All posts by Garry

How to Make Strong Natural Insecticides – Active Ingredient is Quassia wood

The natural insecticides recipe below, is a fairly simple to make and extremely effective against flies, it will kill them quite quickly.

This fly recipe  is non toxic to us humans, which is always a handy thing to know, when your making these natural homemade formulas.
The active ingredient is extracts from the Quassia wood or bark, which act as a natural insecticide

This recipe is an effective fly killer
This organic recipe is an effective fly killer, and Its been around for many years, The Old Pioneers new about it, and used it.














Bitterwood {quassia amara}
A piece of Bitterwood {quassia amara} is shown above in the photo.

















Ingredients you need to have on hand, using this formula to kill flies, are listed below

  • Quassia wood 1  Cup
  • Molasses 3 Tablespoons
  • Alcohol 1 Tablespoon
  • Water 41/2 Cups
  • Absorbent Paper towels


  1. Soak the Quassia wood in 2 Cups of water for 24 hours to soften.
  2. Boil for half an hour,  then set it aside for a further 24 hours.
  3. Then squeeze out the liquid from the Quassia wood.
  4. Without filtering, mix this liquid with the molasses, and the alcohol, then add the remaining 21/2 Cups of water.
  5. Saturate some absorbent paper into it
  6. Place the paper in a shallow dish, with a little of the mixture to slightly pool.
  7. Then place the dish where you want the flies to be attracted to, and allow them to drink some of the fluid, then say, Bye Bye to them

You then need only to top up with liquid every so often, and replace the paper if too many flies are dead in the mixture.

This is a great Natural Insecticides formula that is both inexpensive, effective, and Organic.











Laying Gerflor Vinyl Planks over Ceramic Tiles

Laying Gerflor Vinyl Planks over Ceramic Tiles.

These are a really easy way to upgrade your homes flooring, and the finish is fantastic to look at.

These plans are ideal for wet areas, and are easily removed and relayed if any damage does occur over the years of use they will be subjected to.

A Word Of Warning: Hot Direct Sun on to these planks is not recommended.

Tools Needed:

  1. Bucket
  2. Water
  3. Mop or Sponge, for washing the ceramic tiles
  4. Spade for mixing cement
  5. Good sized Concrete Trowel
  6. Sharp knife (Stanley or Heavy Duty Box cutter)
  7. Gerflor Vinyl Planks (Enough to cover area, PLUS some spares)
  8. Bondcrete Adhesive

Laying Vinyl Flooring

Photo of my finished Job above


Now Onto the Fun Bit

  1. The first step is to thoroughly clean the ceramic tiles, its not important if they are wet or dry for the next step.
  2. Mix some self levelling cement. The instructions are on the bag. (Again you don’t have to be to careful as there is a lot of leeway in mix)
  3. Spread the self levelling cement with a good trowel.
  4. Allow to cure overnight and if still a bit damp because of climate conditions allow another day. (Yes it even affects curing indoors as well).
  5. Apply a good coat of Bondcrete Adhesive. (Follow Instructions are on tub) I mixed mine a bit thicker than recommended.
  6. Allow Bondcrete to dry overnight.
  7. Apply a second coat of Bondcrete Adhesive.
  8. Again allow to dry overnight.
  9. Now its time to grab the Gerflor Vinyl Planks and do a test run to see how they will centre up.
  10. Once you are happy with the positioning of them, its time to either get out a sharp knife to cut the first plank to start the row, or Lay the full vinyl plank Directly against the wall.
  11. Remove the backing paper, (there is an arrow showing which way to pull it away from the plank) I didn’t notice any difference pulling it away from either end.
  12. Simply place the adhesive side down, position carefully then press firmly down. (If you make a mistake the Vinyl Plank can be lifted easily and repositioned).
  13. Place the next plank in position and repeat instruction #12.
  14. Repeat the process until you come across an obstacle in your way, then simply mark, score with a sharp knife, and snap the plank.
  15. Repeat until you have completely covered the entire floor area.

The video below is one I made while renovating my Bathroom and Toilets


Gerflor Vinyl Planks would have to be one of the easiest DIY projects to do yourself.

How to make your own Glass Cleaner.

Make your own Glass Cleaner with these simple ingredients.

A simple and effective environmentally friendly Home-made glass cleaner, using common household ingredients.

This is a very efficient cleaner that is both quick and inexpensive to make that won’t break the bank.

You will need:

  1. 2 cups of water
  2. ½ cup white (clear) or cider vinegar
  3. ¼ cup Methylated Spirits
  4. Paper Towel
  5. Spray Bottle

single cupsingle cupvinegar bottleMethylated Spiritschartpink bottle

Note: To enhance the fragrance of the cleaner add a few drops of orange essential oil or lemon if you prefer.


  1. Mix these ingredients and store in a spray bottle.
  2. Spray directly on the glass surface, or paper towel, then wipe the glass/mirror and polish it off with a clean dry paper towel, to give a nice sparkling finish.


Hint: It’s a good idea to write on the spray bottle that its Glass Cleaner so you know what’s in it.

A happy window washer using our Homemade Glass Cleaner

Using your own Home-made Glass Cleaner is a Great way to save money and the environment.

This simple recipe would be one of the easiest and fastest there is to make, and it will do away with your dependency on any commercial glass cleaner products and save you considerable amounts of money in the future. So many home recipes have been lost over the years its always good to see some of the better ones revived and small improvements added such as the simple fragrance by using essential oils or lemon juice.


The fun and simple necessity of making your own glass cleaner from simple ingredients that most people will find in their own cupboards, always puts a smile on my face. These simple formulas that are safe to use, inexpensive to make, and fun for the family smaller members to use. if you let the little ones help you make a batch, you can almost have a safe bet, that they will want to help you to use it around the house.

Remember to keep an eye on them, when they are helping you, as you never know what they will think needs a good clean.

Fish Tank, Dogs, little brother or sister, and anything that won’t run away is fair game.

Smile You Know it’s True.


How to make an environmentally friendly homemade mould killer from things commonly found in the kitchen.

A simple DIY mould killer using common household items found in most homes.

There is no need for any complicated how to recipe this time to make this simple to follow DIY formula.

This is one mould killer that you can safely let your children have a go at making for you.

Mould in corner of room

A very effective Home-made mould killer, comes in the simple form of vinegar, straight out of the bottle. (How easy is that)

Its as simple as 1 2 3


Ingredients needed:

  1. Vinegar
  2. Spray Bottle
  3. And a few Paper Towels


vinegar bottleSpray bottlePaper Towel


  1. Pour some vinegar into a spray bottle, and spray directly onto the mould you want to remove.
  2. Then leave it to soak overnight,
  3. Then the next day, spray some more vinegar over the area to be cleaned, and wipe it off with a clean paper towel.

This would have to be the easiest how to recipe there is. Its quick and effective to make and its suitable for for young children to do and use with minimum adult supervision. Highly recommended.

Its nice to know that when you want to make your own products, such as this mould killer recipe above, using completely natural and environmentally friendly ingredients,

You are also helping the environment, by not using harsh chemicals as those found in commercial products.


Vinegar, throughout all known human history, has been used for its magical strong antibacterial properties.

One recent test by Good House keeping’s microbiologist, found that as little as 5% vinegar is 90% effective against mould and 99.9% effective against many bacteria strains,

The Ancient magicians and healers, got it right the first time,


How to make a powerful general all purpose cleaner for your house.

This simple all purpose cleaner, is quickly made using this recipe below, it’s both environmentally friendly, and cheap to make as well.

This recipe produces quite a powerful general all purpose cleaner, all made from these common household products found in most homes.

The ingredients list is really small to make this general cleaner, it’s simply Bicarbonate of Soda, Ammonia plus some Vinegar and a quantity of water.

That’s all the necessary ingredients needed to make this very cost effective, and efficient general purpose household cleaner.

Items you will need:

  1. 4 litres Hot Water
  2. 100ml Bicarbonate of Soda
  3. 100ml Ammonia
  4. 200ml White Vinegar

Jug, WaterBaking Powder (Bicarbonate of Soda)Ammoniavinegar bottle


Mix all ingredients together and store in a screw top bottle until needed. (Wow… that was hard)

Note: With this mixture, you can clean glass, kitchen appliances, etc

P.S. Including silverware.

This is a very versatile home-made cleaner and I’m sure you’ll find many applications for it.

powerful general all purpose cleaner

A little bit of interesting info about the ingredients used in the recipe above.

The X-15 aircraft used ammonia as one component fuel of its rocket engine

The X-15 aircraft used ammonia as one of it’s component in the fuel used in its rocket engine

Household ammonia is a solution of NH3 in water (i.e., ammonium hydroxide) used as a general purpose cleaner for many surfaces.

Because ammonia results in a relatively streak-free shine, one of its most common uses, is to clean glass, porcelain and stainless steel. It is also frequently used for cleaning ovens, and soaking items in it to loosen baked-on grime.

Household ammonia, ranges in concentration, from 5 to 10 weight percent ammonia.

Bicarbonate of soda.

Bicarbonate of soda.

A paste made from baking soda, can be very effective when used in cleaning and scrubbing.

For cleaning aluminum objects, the use of sodium bicarbonate is discouraged, as it attacks the thin non-reactive protective oxide layer of this otherwise very reactive metal.

A solution in warm water will remove the tarnish from silver, when the silver is in contact with a piece of aluminium foil

White vinegar

White vinegar is often used as a household cleaning agent.

Because it is acidic, it can dissolve mineral deposits from glass,

For most uses, dilution with water is recommended for safety reasons, and to avoid damaging the surfaces being cleaned.

How to make a mildly abrasive cleaner for your home with Bicarbonate of Soda and water.

Making a mildly abrasive household cleaner for your home with Bicarbonate of Soda and water is a simple DIY project anyone can do

This recipe is as simple as they get to make. Add in a bit of elbow grease and you can save yourself quite a few dollars with this top-notch environmentally friendly cleaner.

You will need 4 items:

  1. Bicarbonate of Soda
  2. Water
  3. Bowl
  4. Sponge

Baking Powder (Bicarbonate of Soda)Jug, WaterEmpty, BowlCleaning, Sponge


Direction’s to make this mildly abrasive cleaner:

  1. Mix the Bicarbonate of Soda with a few drops of water to form a paste.

How easy is that.! AND… No I didn’t miss any steps in the recipe

You can now take a sponge and dip it into your paste, and gently scrub the areas you want cleaned.

Hint: For the more stubborn areas, you can use a scrubbing-brush or an old toothbrush, and then wipe off the excess with your sponge when your done.


DIY mildly abrasive home-made cleaner

Note: This mildly abrasive cleaner solution can also be used on painted surfaces with caution. (Don’t let the kiddies use it)

BUT if you do make them use it to clean up a mess they made on your paint work, do keep a close eye on them, otherwise you will have an even bigger mess to deal with, when the paint starts to get a bit thin, and starts shows what.s behind the layer. (Unless you intended to repaint the area anyway)

A simple and inexpensive all purpose cleaner and deodorizer recipe for your Toilet.

A simple, inexpensive all purpose cleaner that will also deodorizer your Toilet

This simple DIY recipe you can easily make with minimum of fuss. Its nice to use all natural ingredients that are environmentally safe to use in your cleaning environment.

So many people are being brainwashed, by the large commercial companies peddling there wares, and are often taken in by the bright shiny bottles and the fancy TV and Radio Ad campaigns that must cost them a fortune to produce and run.

You will Need these three items:

  1. Baking soda
  2. Vinegar
  3. Toilet Brush

Baking Powder (Bicarbonate of Soda)vinegar bottleToilet Brush


  1. Sprinkle about 1/2 cup of baking soda around the bowl of your toilet.
  2. Carefully pour approximately 1/2 cup of white vinegar over the interior surface of the toilet to be cleaned,
  3. Wait until the bubbling stops. (You can leave it overnight if you like.)
  4. Then scrub your toilet with a toilet brush





Some information about Bicarbonate of soda.

Bicarbonate of soda.

A paste from baking soda can be very effective when used in cleaning and scrubbing. For cleaning aluminum objects, the use of sodium bicarbonate is discouraged as it attacks the thin non-reactive protective oxide layer of this otherwise very reactive metal. A solution in warm water will remove the tarnish from silver when the silver is in contact with a piece of aluminium foil

White vinegar

White vinegar is often used as a household cleaning agent. Because it is acidic, it can dissolve mineral deposits from glass,

For most uses, dilution with water is recommended for safety, and to avoid damaging any of the surfaces being  cleaned.

How to lay a concrete garden kerb yourself. D.I.Y.

You will need to have the materials and tools below to produce your own concrete kerb..

  • Flexible timber for the form work. (In Australia, Jarrah timber strips are easily obtained.)
  • String
  • Coarse sand.
  • Bags of Cement.
  • Pegs, either timber or steel to hold form work in place.
  • Wheel barrow.
  • Shovel and spade.
  • Cement Edge Trowel (or similar)

(For Kerbing, the Sand Cement ratio is, 1 bag cement to 16 shovels of coarse sand. this will produce approximately 10 linear metres at 90mm x 150mm

NOTE: 10 bags builders cement and I cubic metre of sand, will produce approximately 50 linear metres of concrete kerb at 150 x 90mm.

IMPORTANT: Wash hands if you come into contact with wet cement. (The lime in cement it will eat away any skin that comes in contact with it)


You will need to remove the grass under the area you intend to lay your kerbing.

A sand or crushed rock base is then laid. (Its important to get your levels correct at this stage.)

Set your timber form work in place, and hold it in position with the pegs hammered into the ground. 150 x 90mm.


  • You can use a string line to get your lines and levels set.
  • For curves a Stake driven into the ground with a string attached will suffice for any circles or arcs you may need.

NOTE: To get your timber to bend easily, cut a series of vertical lines in it, this will weaken the timber strip in this area and make it easy to bend without breaking.

Set you timber in place with pegs at your desired width.

  • example:  90 x 150mm

Mix your concrete with a concrete mixer or in a wheelbarrow. and shovel it into your timber form work.

Allow a few minutes for the concrete to harden, then use a Cement Edge Trowel to give the kerb a smooth finish.
P.S. You can throw colour hardener on top of your concrete kerb, then trowel it into your concrete surface to produce a nice coloured kerb.

Cement Edge Trowel
You can also colour the garden kerb with Concrete Colour Sealer or a Concrete Paint.

Allow 1 day before removing form work.

IMPORTANT: Cut expansion joints approximately 1 metre apart to control cracking.

How long will a concrete kerb take to dry before I can use my mower?

How long will it normally take for concrete kerbs take to dry
Concrete normally dries at fairly consistent rates.

Note: The ambient Temperature is a factor to take into consideration when calculating drying times

Concrete doesn’t gain strength by drying, but by “curing” which it does for the period while it remains damp after laying.

A 100mm thick kerb take approximately:
1 day to achieve around 30% of its full strength.
At 2 Days it passes the 50% mark.
And at 3 Days 75% has been achieved.
It takes concrete approximately 30 Days to reach 99% of its final compression strength.
The thickness of the concrete will of cause affect the curing times.
I.E. The thicker the longer it will take.

Its a good idea is to keep the concrete damp while it cures, you can place a sheet of polythene over it. You can also spray water on it with a hose if you want to.

Note; If you can keep the concrete damp for a week or more, it will have a higher compression strength.

diy concrete kerb

Protect the concrete from hot sun for the first day (in some countries they don’t lay concrete until the afternoon to avoid the hot mid-day sun which causes cracking and dusty/flaky surfaces).

Growing Beetroot from Seed and save yourself some money.

Growing Beetroot from Seed, (not seedlings) and you will save money by doing this.

You should plant beetroot seeds about 6 to 8 centimeters apart, and directly into the ground, you’ll also need to thin the growing seedlings out later..

Keep the water up to them, deep watering will promote the root to grow down into the soil where we want it.

Note: Don’t use any high nitrogen-based fertilizers on your growing beetroot, fertilizers such as liquid manure and fish emulsions come to mind. if you do use them or similar you will have plenty of leaves but very small beets, so its best to avoid this type of fertilizer all together.

Tip: Its best to plant beetroot from seed and not from punnet’s which have already started to grow as the young beets do not transplant well.


P.S. Beetroot is partial to an alkaline soil, so adding a handful of lime per square square metre, and lightly forking the lime  into your garden bed, before planting, is not a bad idea.

Sliced beetroot in fresh salads from your own garden, nothing beats that for taste.

This is a very simple crop to grow from seed, as with all vegetables, the quality of your seed will make or break your efforts,

Always use the best and freshest seed to ensure a good harvest from your crop.

Growing your own vegetables is most enjoyable and you can easily involve the kids in watering and making sure the snails and bugs don’t become a problem, their reward will be on the dinner plate and I’m sure the beetroot they grew is better tasting than yours. haha