Visit To The Chinese Doctor

While sister Abbie was in town and we were cruising around Chinatown, we went into a Chinese herbalist’s office, recommended by my garden neighbor, Mrs. Cheng. The herbalist doctor I visited in the past had died in August of this year after falling down a staircase and hitting his head. His son’s wife reported the hospital advised that all organs were in good shape for a 77 year old, but that he had suffered head trauma. An unfortunate tragedy for his son and wife, who dispensed the herbs prescribed. Yim Bo Him was a tireless Chinese doctor; people from many walks of life went to visit him for many different ailments, including cancer, diabetes, nerve problems.

The new herbalist is a woman, whose small office is next to the old Chinatown post office substation in Honolulu’s Chinese Cultural Plaza (I’ve misplaced her card). When we arrived, there was one woman waiting for an acupuncture patient and two of them being treated in a small back room. The doctor helped me, asking my condition questions in broken English, checking pulse on both wrists and writing very quickly in Chinese on a small pad. The prescription was given to an English speaking assistant, who weighed out the sticks, berries, bark, seeds—looks like mulch—on a small balance scale. Two bags: enough for 4 cups of adaptogenic medicine. Her prescription is much more palatable than those prescribed by Yim Bo Him.

Adaptogen: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/adaptogen?qsrc=2446

I go sometimes to Chinese heralists because of the philosophy of eastern medicine: I like the idea of treating with adaptogens, of non-harm, and of bearable cost ($25 for office visit and herbs). You have to consider that this stuff has been around for a lot of years, compared with our Western medicine. It’s stands to reason it works. It’s modalities are not a quick-fix, and maybe that’s what we pay for in allopathic doctoring. You can’t beat hospitals for broken bones, but when it comes to thyroid issues, they are far behind the curve; many sufferers of hyper-and hypothyroidism are getting relief in alternative medicines.

Another link to the difference between Chinese and Western medicine:

http://health61.wordpress.com/2010/01/24/the-major-differences-between-chinese-medicine-and-western-medicine/

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From: Da’ Gahden

Mexican Sunflowers, From The Garden

Nice to have a lovely yellow blossoms in the house.

Brings the outdoors to in.

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Garden Update, March 2010

Two strawberries picked on this trip. Note the young taro plant in the background.

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Gardening Update

Soil Lesson

Soil Lesson

Growing Lesson

Growing Lesson

Oct 25, ’09 – Went to a Olomana Gardens workshop today and found myself overwhelmed with information. Glenn Martinez is the ultimate skill person. He’s an electrician, carpenter, engineer, inventor—master of much knowledge.  He and his wife, Liz, run a permaculture farm in Waimanalo < http://www.olomanagardens.com > and give classes in techniques to get the most from plants and soil in an organic setting.  Highlights of learning:

  • Most plants need 4 to 6″ of soil for growing (‘cept like carrots); no oxygen when you go below a foot.
  • Compost worms eat your fruit and vege scraps. Tiller worms are plowers.
  • Typical soil mixes gardeners can purchase from O. G., or make themselves is 1/3 black cinders, 1/3 vermaculture and 1/3 coconut fiber.
  • You don’t want to put thick mulch in garden; water won’t penetrate.
  • O.G. uses 70% shade cloth to make raised beds of various types that they sell. It comes in colors.
  • Raised beds keep bugs at bay.
  • Horse manure is a very good fertilizer.  By state law it must be aired for 90 days for above ground plants; 120 days for plants that fruit on the ground.
  • Solid stain is a good lumber protectorate, keeping borax in and bugs out, especially in pine lumber.
  • Follow-up on “Soil Soup”, “Square Foot Garden”, Body & Soil Kipahulu Tour of 4 private farms; $115.  Jan 15-16 Kula Farm workshop.
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Plot #63 Update

Lilikoi

Lilikoi

Oct. 21, ’09 – As visitor and plant starter Pamela noted, Lilikoi have started.
There are two…no there are 3. 🙂
So, now what we have eaten from the garden are a couple of varieties of tomatoes, some of lettuce, a cucumber, purple bell pepper (Mouse has eaten all), a variety of watercress, mint, holy basil, lemongrass, basil and soon lilikoi!  A few Marigolds have been picked for home display.

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Plot #63 Update

October 7, 2009 – Took a new P&S video of growing and added plants. Growing is happening almost before my eyes, so we have to get this up for posterity :).

Purchased a few dollar & something plants from Home Depot today, and on Monday, finished attaching the upper deck of (green furnished by Doug) wire on the fence perimeter. So there are updates that highlight the progress!

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BIG Tomato

First harvested large-variety tomato

Saturday, 10/3/09 – Today I harvested  the 1st BIG tomato of 3 currently ripening. Consumed a few of the smaller variety—which I’ve shared with Mouse the guinea pig— but tonight I added this larger tomato to my fried rice meal:  Brown rice, red onion, green onion, lots of ginger, garlic, said tomato, part of a carrot, cabbage, and tamari to taste. Made a meal for dinner and lunch the next day. The green onion roots were saved for planting.

Also today, brother Doug brought by a great piece of green wire fencing that will help keep the lilikoi plant inside Plot 63’s perimeter.  This lilikoi, started by Pamela, is growing so quickly, it has taken over the diamond head side fence, and is now starting to creep onto the two mauka / makai sides. One rule of the community gardens is you can’t have your plants intruding onto your neighbors’ spaces. Lilikoi tentacles have needed trimming back from outside the fence so as not to intrude into Fred, the neighbor’s, garden. (He’s trying to keep his bitter melon from attaching itself to my lilikoi. :). All this quick, healthy growing requires cooperative vigilance.

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