Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Keeping Kool

The summer heat is here, and I cannot change this. I suppose it is just as well that I am not in charge of the weather, because even the less-pleasant portions do good things. The garden is loving the hotter temperatures. However, I do not love them. In fact, I think they might be causing a wee bit of irritability in me. Yeah, pretending like that is not true does not make it so, but seeking out the positive might help improve the situation. Therefore, I decided that I might as well find a way to take advantage of the situation, too.

I have always thought about solar dyeing, but never got around to it. That all changed the other day. I filled up a pot of water, fluffed up eight ounces of Shetland, and let it soak. Then I carried it outside to a sunny spot and returned with the colors. I am still not quite ready to move beyond the Kool-Aid dyeing, so that is what I used. I mixed up and poured in one packet each of black cherry, orange, and pink lemonade, as well as two packets of lemonade. Then it was time to cover and wait. After the dye was exhausted, it was time to wait some more. I carried in the big pot just in case a pop-up thunderbumper came along, and to allow it to cool. After it was out of the pot and out of the water, it was looking nice, and there only remained one more waiting period. After it dried, I took the time to admire my work. I liked it. Then I decided to get fancy and braid it.

With success like that and the prediction of even hotter weather, another foray into solar dyeing seemed like the most logical decision. Alpaca seemed like a wonderful choice, and I just happened to have eight ounces waiting for action. For this attempt, I used one packet each of black cherry, grape, and blue raspberry lemonade. I wonder what the finished yarn will look like.

Master Gardener Bonus Quiz

Does your garden want the Kool-Aid dye-depleted wastewater from these dyeing efforts?
If so, which plants want this water?
Also, does it matter whether it is the water from the alpaca or the Shetland?
If you water your garden with the wastewater from solar Kool-Aid dyeing, is it still an organic garden?
Will watering the garden with the aforementioned liquid make the ants go away?
If you are looking to me for gardening wisdom, your garden is in tremendous peril.
Have a nice day!
blog comments powered by Disqus