A Jolly Good

As spring decides whether or not to appear, and the annual dilemma of what on earth to wear confuses us so much we dare not leave the house, one thing for certain is that it is time for a jolly good spring clean.

 Helpfully Cabbages & Roses’ book Guide to Natural Housekeeping is filled to the brim with ideas and recipes for a chemical free purge of the house and garden.

My absolute particular favourite is the chapter on Bicarbonate of Soda.    Although it is available from our store on Sydney Street in Chelsea, it can be bought from most chemists and on line.

Here are some interesting and most effective uses for bicarbonate of soda:

Mixed with water, bicarbonate of soda makes and alkaline solution which will cut through grease and dirt on most surfaces in the kitchen and bathroom.

Used dry with a damp cloth, it will remove stains from cups and teapots.

Used dry it is effective as an abrasive powder, mixed with vinegar it becomes even more powerful.

To deodorize carpets, sprinkly over the carpet and leave for an hour. Vacuum off.

To remove mildew on shower curtains, apply a paste of bicarbonate of soda and leave over night, wash off with warm water.

After cleaning the oven, make a light paste of water and bicarbonate of soda and brush inside the over with this solution, this will make cleaning the oven nest time much 

For polishing chrome, make a paste with water, make sure you rinse off the solution with clean running water to remove deposits.

To remove odours from inside refrigerators, leave a saucer of bicarbonate of soda, change every two weeks. Instead of throwing away the old bicarbonate, pour into the kitchen sink followed by a kettle of boiling water to keep drains fresh and odour free.

Sprinkle into the bottom of dustbins to remove unpleasant odours, after emptying the rubbish, add some water and swill around the dustbin – empty and dry, add more bicarbonate for next time.

To remove rust from cooking utensils, dip a cut potato into a dish of bicarbonate and rub over the rust.   Rinse.   To avoid rust forming again, wipe with olive oil on a cloth.

Soak dish cloths and flannels in a strong solution of water and bicarbonate to make them fresh.

To keep Cabbage Green in cooking, add a pinch of bicarbonate of soda to the water to retain the magnesium in the leaves.

To save on washing powder and to make it more effective, substitute half your normal dose with half bicarbonate of soda.

To clean silver, line the sink with tin foil, sprinkle a good handful of bicarbonate of soda and cream of tartar and pour over a kettle of boiling water. Brush with soft washing up brush to remove tarnish.   Rinse and polish with dry cloth.

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