There are even a lot of uses for ash from your wood stove – including making soap. My mom said my grandma used to make homemade soap, but you never knew how strong or weak it was going to be . Don’t try to rush the process by adding more water. Slowly add the hot lye concentrate to the hot fat. Instead, crystals formed and are sticking to the pot, and the oil is just sitting there. Some of the water does stay absorbed in the ashes. Can you use leftover fat from cooking or should you use clean fat? However, this lye is sodium hydroxide. Waterproof wood – Mix wood ash and linseed oil to create a waterproofing agent for wood. I have been reading everything I can to work up the courage to try this. Wood ash is commonly disposed of in landfills, but with rising disposal costs, ecologically friendly alternatives, such as serving as compost for agricultural and forestry applications, are becoming more popular. this is a good introduction, thank you !!! Make sure you are stirring thoroughly so the salt completely dissolves. I could only go by the texture as to how much fat I would need. Often overlooked and many times deprecated because it was over-applied — it is time to give wood ash its due. If you want to get really scientific about it, then check out this lye:fat table based on saponification. It might depend on the porcelain, but (from what I know) it’s generally not safe to put boiling anything in porcelain because it can easily crack. Ash can also be sprinkled on to finished dishes to give a striking and smoky garnish to a plate. Instant download! Definitely some trial and error involved as there are so many variables. Great question! If you want to add anything to your soap (scented oils, dried herbs, coffee, etc. I found a couple of sources that say you can still manage a soft bar with the addition of some salt. Make sure that your wood ash to compost ratio is 5% or less. It’s treated as a bread alternative, even though it can also be labeled as “ash bread”. You will need … If phosphorus is low in your soil, add bones to the bonfire and crush them with the charcoal. You can buy lye at specialty stores. To make lye in the kitchen, boil the ashes from a hardwood fire (soft woods are too resinous to mix with fat) in a little soft water, rain water is best, for … I would like to suggest a simple, effective fertilizer you can make yourself. The chemical reaction between the two produces a soap which is great for cleaning just about anything. I started making soap 2 years ago. Its use should not be discontinued in the following situations: For more information about fertilizer, visit the Acres U.S.A. bookstore or subscribe to Acres U.S.A. magazine. If you want to try this homesteading project, here’s detailed instructions on how to make wood ash soap. There needs to be at least a few inches of headroom on top of the barrel. I don’t want to leave it to drain over night & come out to a bucket that’s been eaten through…. Suggestions? 226 grams tallow. Let the mixture sit for at least 3 hours (though overnight is better). Manufacturers remove the glycerin, which goes on to be used in the manufacture of lotions and explosives, and they replace it with less expensive softeners. Lye water should be about pH 13. pH Correction of Soil. Insert a faucet fitting and secure it with a nut … Wood ash lye is much less caustic then the commercial stuff you can buy. Nixtamalization of corn for grinding – Use lye from wood ash to make corn easier to grind. Eventually crystals started to form on it. To cut the dust, I like to mix wood ashes with moist leaf mold. The black chunks of wood contain too much carbon. And I came to realize until 2020 that I could have added salt to it, to make it last. You won’t get as many suds from wood ash soap either. Note that some soapmakers use a lot more salt – as much as 3 tsp per cup of fat. Remove the towel the next day. But it oil came separately after i added dried herbals . There are tricks you can do – like playing with ratios and adding salt – to make a harder, less-oily soap. I want to make a natural soap, less caustic, mostly as a medium of delivering poppy seed oil, while still being less oily and more cleaning than just an ointment or lotion. A good ratio to start with is 1 cup of fat to ¾ cup of concentrated lye. Have you tried making soap from wood ash? So, pour 1.5 to 2 gallons of water through your leaching barrel to get 1 gallon. This will take several hours! Cut one squared piece 5 ½ inches by 4 inches. The mixture hasn’t thickened at all. I want to make LIQUID ash soap for dishes & laundry. To make ash-baked vegetables, simply peel the vegetable of your choice and rub the ash in. 3) Grow rich and mighty tomatoes: Tomatoes love calcium! Weaker lye soap can be used for washing your body. If you burn wood for home heating you already have a ready supply. Raise the Barrel. Drill a hole near the bottom of the five gallon bucket. It’s typical for concrete to become stained after a car leaks oil on it, … I imagine it sank because it was cooking thru. You can use iodized salt, non-iodized salt, kosher salt, sea salt… The only salt which WON’T work is Epsom salt, but that isn’t actually salt (try it and your soap will end up soggy and sweating). Lye is sodium hydroxide and wood ash is potassium hydroxide. The soap will need to set for several days (ideally 7 days!) Then put your hardwood ash on top of this. Does the kind of salt matter? Just rub it around and the dishes come out clean (I wouldn’t wash my body with this though!). This you don't need. Step 3: Concentrating the Lye. In a stainless steel (not aluminum) pot, boil your lye water. By contrast, traditional lye made from ashes is potassium hydroxide. The first method is easier but doesn’t produce as good of results. Sift the ashes through the sieve – the white ash will fall out and the black chunks will stay out. Area #5. It takes time and plenty of stirring to set up the soap. Traditionally, pioneers would use lard or tallow to make soap. Therefore, by adding one-quarter cup (directly into the hole where you are planting your tomatoes) you are creating an ideal situation for plump and ripe tomatoes. Prop the barrel up on some boards. 1 gallon of lye water should reduce to ¾ cup. Unfortunately there is a lot of trial and error involved in this process. There is no metal involved. Using a hand shovel put a few scoops around your plants and work it into the ground with a hand rake being careful not to damage any roots of the plants. It refers to the process of soaking wood ash in iron pots to dissolve the potassium salts and then evaporate them. It acts in … Stir constantly for 3 minutes. Make glue – Mix wood ash and pine sap to create a passable glue. You’ll know the soap is ready to be poured when you draw a line across it with your spoon and see a line (indented, not colored streak). EcoFarmingDaily.com is the world’s most useful farming, ranching and growing website. Once the ash is well mixed allow it to sit for a minute then pour off all excess water. If you add oil to lye, you risk splattering. Smoking around the house results in ash dust, and burn marks. Impossible to say what the problem might be, have you tried some of the toubleshooting tips above ie adding more lye? Made a soap mixture that was soft, had brown liquid separate in the mold. The ‘Wood Ash Lye Extractor’ diagram explains it. Wood Ash Lye “Bar” Soap. One recipe I read seemed to say I was supposed to put water into it before adding the fat. The vegetable can then be wrapped in either foil or a salt crust pastry and baked in the oven. Keep it warm during this time! To produce a good soap, you need hardwood ashes that have been burnt throughout. Add a thick layer of straw on top, then place 10 cups (1.44 kg) of white hardwood ash on top. It will be easier to cut when it is still soft. I’m new to this whole thing so pardon the ignorance of these questions. However, newbies might get peace of mind by testing the pH of their lye water. You’ll need the lye to be hot and bubbling while you do step 4. The water which drains off will contain lye. Commercial grain production — Don’t even think about it. Recollect the water and test it again. Keep the mineral levels in your soil well supplied; Indoor growing — Greenhouses and high tunnels are very intensive and require more production to remain profitable. The other way around is safer: Add lye to oils. Soap is made by mixing together lye (a high pH, caustic substance) with fat (which is alkaline). Iodized or plain table salt, kosher, coarse…? Roses LOVE wood ash. I’m also a science nerd and very proud of it. In a well ventilated area, put the ashes and water into the pot and bring it up to a boil. I could find very little information to go on so I did some guessing. Or, for a more traditional testing method, just put a chicken feather into the lye water. It should be yellowish/brown in color, much like apple cider vinegar. Wood ash in the garden. It might take several hours before it is ready. Don’t worry if the pH isn’t exactly 13. Yes, it really takes this long! Depending on the type of wood used,  you might not be able to get it to set into a bar at all. Wood ash is alkaline, so applying it to compost heaps helps to balance the tendency of compost to be more acidic. Liquid soap is potassium hydroxide, caustic potash—derived from wood ash, historically referred to as lye but not the same thing. I also found some recipes for homemade lye, but I think commercial, food grade lye is probably a much safer and much better alternative, if you’re going to go through with making bar soap. Could you please let me know what could the reason. To produce a good soap, you need hardwood ashes that have been burnt throughout. Wood ash is extremely high in calcium. You don't want pockets of dry ash. What about vegetable shortening? So…I botched this royally. If your lye water isn’t strong enough, then you can pour the lye water back through the leaching barrel. Check out our Ebook bundle. How will you know that your lye is done? Cover the bottom of the barrel with small stones. After reading yours I’m guessing I didn’t use enough. Wood ash soap is usually really soft. Get a plastic bucket, wooden barrel, or big clay pot. Not on top. Wood ash can help make compost less acidic Using Wood Ash in Compost . There are a lot of different measurements used for making lye. Learn how to render your own lard/tallow here. I figure if I am spending this much time on soap I should probably make sure I am using the correct ingredients. From cleaning the house to making homemade soap and helping your garden plants grow, wood ash has some very interesting uses that you need to be aware of. I could not figure how far to reduce the lye. | Engineered by, Wood Ash: How to Make Your Own Fertilizer. See this article https://classicbells.com/soap/lyeStorage.asp It goes over the types of plastic which are okay and which are very much not okay. Correct Acidic Soil. Making Wood Ash Glazes. Cut two squared pieces of wood 5 ½ inches by 8 ½ inches. How to Make Wood Ash Soap Step 1: Gather Ashes. When the mixture is a uniform golden brown and doesn’t make colored streaks when stirred, it is ready for pouring. Position a bucket or pot underneath to catch the lye. To make the potash as consistent as possible use the same type of wood, soak the ash for the same amount each time and then when making the glaze use the same amount of potash and clay each time, also make … Use on Alkaline- Loving Plants. Seed preservation – Simply sprinkle seeds with ash to prevent pest damage. Use ½ tsp of salt per pound of fat (1lb is roughly 2 cups melted fat). Disclosure: “As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.”. Mix. Poke a finger-sized hole in the bottom. Because wood ash has a high char content, it can be used as an odor control agent, especially in composting operations. (. It should be thick like porridge but without any chunks. I am hoping to do this someday soon. If you have raw fat, you’ll need to render it and you can find directions for that here: Rendering Animal Fat. You can cut the soap to size beforehand though. I wouldn’t to risk it with lye and have it end up everywhere! Join our community of thousands using this information to build their own profitable, ecological growing systems. Wooden boxes work well, but you can also use plastic containers. Up until the 19th century, this … This step is completely optional. I find it very satisfying, however being a working parent I also need to find time. It also creates better conditions for composting worms, which will speed up decomposition. The liquid would be collected filtered through a … To cut the dust, I like to mix wood ashes with moist leaf mold. It’s like taking the peanut oil out of peanut butter and adding palm oil back in. There are very simple ways to make glazes using wood ash alone, or ash can be a major or minor ingredient in a recipe. I like to incorporate plenty of charcoal in combination with the wood ashes. Thanks in advance. Any type of fat will do for making wood ash soap. Let us know if you get some good results. before you remove it. A kiln-dried brick with 50 percent clay, 10 percent wood ash and 40 percent soil and aerators is very stable in high heat. The use of wood ash does not replace soil test and fertility recommendations; rather it supplements it and reduces the overall need to purchase costly off-site inputs. Built and managed by the team at Acres U.S.A., the Voice of Eco-Agriculture, all our how-to information is written by research authors, livestock professionals and world-renowned growers. Thanks for the article! Mixture is ready for pouring, when it at the same time makes and doesn’t make streaks when stirred. Let us know if any tips you have if you try it again. “When the mixture is golden brown and doesn’t make streaks when stirred, it is ready for pouring. I want to do this project again. The other half gallon of water is absorbed in the wood ash and straw and doesn’t drip out at the bottom of the barrel. Keep it warm during this time! Wood ash for roses and other flowers. If so, I just melt it? Area #4. CC BY 2.0) by necrocake“ash water / drip lye container” (CC BY 2.0) by rickbradley“Let’s Do This” (CC BY-NC 2.0) by savor_soaps“Molding the Soap” (CC BY-ND 2.0) by madaise“Ready to go…” (CC BY-ND 2.0) by madaise. Keep trying! Stronger lye soap can be used for tougher tasks like washing clothes. To create an optimum growing environment in your garden take these actions: And now for the word of caution. If you are making large amounts of soap at once, then add the fat gradually, stirring for several minutes each time you add more fat. The egg would float at the top below the surface then sank. No worries about what they are made of. Cut three squared lengths of your board 2 feet long. Make sure that the ash is well compacted in the bucket. There are two methods you can use to make lye from hardwood ashes. Is a Porcelain pot safe to boil the lye water? If phosphorus is low in your soil, add bones to the bonfire and crush them with the charcoal. 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