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Soap nuts/ Soap berries

Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by Motomom34, Jun 19, 2019.

  1. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    Has anyone ever tried or used soap nuts? Soap berries/nuts are shells used for laundry and are said to have antimicrobial properties.

    Soap nuts aka soap berries.

    Native to India and Nepal, soap nuts are now found in both the eastern and western hemispheres. The soap nut, which is actually a berry, forms a hard shell when dry that resembles a nut, hence the name. The berry shells contain saponin, a natural surfactant that is released when the shell absorbs water. Considered a natural detergent, soap nuts have become a popular environmentally friendly alternative to chemical detergent. Sapindus mukorossi is a gentle option for those with allergies to chemicals in regular detergents. It is generally considered safe for use on septic and greywater systems, however, we recommend you consult a professional.

    There is considerable discussion as to what variety of soap nuts is preferable for use as a laundry soap alternative. Any soap nut from the genus Sapindus will work just fine as they all have saponin producing properties. Mountain Rose Herbs: Soap Nuts deseeded
    The place linked has them for $8.00 per pound and Amazon has a 1/2 lb for $11. Soap berries clean and deodorize. Soap Nuts (Nature’s Laundry Detergent) – Living Natural Mama

    I found a few seeds for sale so one can grow their own tree. Florida allegedly has some growing down there:
    Survival Plant Profile: Florida Soapberry or Soap Nut Tree | The Survival Gardener
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  2. Zimmy

    Zimmy Wait, I'm not ready! Site Supporter++

    Never heard of it. Thanks!
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  3. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey Site Supporter

    Borax is a "natural" albeit deadly alkaline product that will help any wash look better.
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  4. Salted Weapon

    Salted Weapon Monkey+++

    The thread name sounds like the title of a Trashy Erotic Novel ..[ROFL][ROFL][ROFL][ROFL][ROFL][ROFL]

    Good information.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 19, 2019
  5. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    I have tried them, they are not very effective at getting out really dirty cloths unless you soak for several hours. Lye used to make soap is a much better cleaning agent. Borax is a mineral that is refined and helps boost laundry detergent's cleaning ability
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  6. runswithdogs

    runswithdogs Monkey+++

    Used them for a while a few years ago.. work ok for light washing but like Gando says.. not so great for dealing with proper dirty laundry.
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  7. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    Thank you @Ganado & @runswithdogs for the product report. If SHTF, it would be good to have stuff to clean with but one always has to weight if growing a tree is worth it. I do not live in the proper growing zones so to grow a tree, it would be a challenge.
  8. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    Why? When old school lye soap is so easy to make. Hardwood ashes, a leaching barrel, lard or tallow, rain water and a cheap PH meter. I do 4.5 ounces of 13ph lye to 2 pounds of fat or tallow and give it a 4-5 week cure time. Use a old grater to shred it fine for laundry soap or leave as bars fer washing myself. To leach the lye just need hardwood ashes NOT soft woods, too many resins in soft woods. Use the PH meter to make sure the lye is 13%.

    This method has been used fer a few thousand years so there must be something right about.

  9. DKR

    DKR Raconteur of the first stripe

    Not just for making soap...


    Wisdom from the Past: Nixtamalization of Corn

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  10. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    Ganado and Motomom34 like this.
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  20. CATO
    a good read How to Make Aspirin From Bark
    Thread by: CATO, Dec 13, 2011, 25 replies, in forum: Back to Basics
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