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Asbestos and its Impact to the Environment

Previously a common component of a lot of construction materials and household products, asbestos continues to threaten both human health and the environment even decades after its use was discontinued.

Let’s take a look at this harmful substance and its impact to the environment.

 

What is Asbestos?... read more

Gardening Tips for Beginners

Spring has definitely sprung and tis the season to start your gardens!    Growing your own food is a wonderful way to be green and save money, too.  Even if you think you might not have a green thumb, gardening certain things can be easier than you think.  

Here are some tips for someone just trying to get into gardening:... read more

Planting Seeds for Spring

springtime gardeningSpring has officially sprung and it's time to start planning your garden!   Here in New England where I live, we still have some thawing out to do, but now is the time to begin seedlings indoors for some crops, including onions and tomatoes which are two of my favorites.  Nothing gets me more into the mood for spring than starting to plan which things to plant and then starting some of our seedlings indoors.  ... read more

Composting in the Winter

If you live in a climate with cold winters, do you compost year-round?  Should you compost year-round?  The answer is, YES!  You can compost throughout the winter.  We usually do, though I've been known to take a break when it's really snowy making it difficult to access our compost bin.  Feel free to keep composting.  

Your compost will stop breaking down during the colder temperatures, but once spring arrives, it will continue.  The University of Illinois Extension explains:  "Low winter temperatures will slow or temporarily stop the composting process. As air temperatures warm up in the spring, microbial activity will resume.”

However, when the temperature drops, microbes that cause your compost to breakdown can sometimes remain active in the compost pile.  The middle of your compost pile can still be warm and actively breaking down because of heat generated by bacteria.  ... read more

Preparing Your Garden for Spring - even if it's still winter!

I saw something very exciting at the grocery store over the weekend: a display of seed packets!  We're stuck here in the teens in Massachusetts, but the display of seed packets was like seeing a little ray of sunshine - right there in Stop & Shop!  Seed packets for sale can only mean one thing...spring is in the foreseeable future!

Even though it's nowhere near spring in many parts of the U.S., thinking about your garden is definitely a reality.  

How can you get your garden ready even if it's still winter?... read more

Real vs. Fake Christmas Trees & the Environment

real vs. fake christmas treesWho is planning to deck the halls this weekend?

You might be wondering what the most eco-friendly solution is in terms of buying a Christmas tree.  Is buying a real Christmas tree bad for the environment?  Or what about the fake ones?  What are your options to keep your Christmas tree, well, green?... read more

Leaf Blowers and the Environment

Leaf blowers and the environmentEvery now and then my city revisits the idea of banning leaf blowers.  So far, a ban still hasn't come to fruition, but I hate leaf blowers.  Nothing drives me crazier than a quiet, crisp fall morning ruined by the sound of a neighbor's leaf blower.

The noise pollution is one thing, but even worse is that leaf blowers cause serious air pollution.  In fact,  a 2011 test done by Edmunds showed that “a consumer-grade leaf blower emits more pollutants than a 6,200-pound 2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor.”  Wow.... read more

Cleaning Your Garden This Autumn

prepping your gardenAt the first sign of frost in the forecast, we harvest everything, eat what we can, and preserve what we can't by canning, freezing, and dehydrating.  

The next step is cleaning the garden.  

First of all, there are a few crops that you don't need to harvest before the first frost.  Carrots, garlic, leeks, and parsnips are a few things that can be harvested through early winter.  Cover them with a little extra mulch to keep the ground warmer, and harvest through December.  

Next, remove all weeds, dead vines, leaves, and other debris.  If they're not diseased, throw them in your compost.  Gently till your soil to expose insects that might overwinter.  After that, add some compost and leaves and till into the soil.  ... read more

Fall and Winter Gardening

fall gardeningThe days are a little shorter, Halloween candy is on the shelves at CVS, and some kids are already back in school.   Indeed, autumn is around the corner.

Autumn can be a wonderful time of year for a greenie.  Here in New England where I live, local apples are plentiful resulting in homemade cider, applesauce, pies, and apple butter.  The weather is cooler, meaning less need for air conditioning.  And while many people think that September signals the beginning of the end for gardening season in a lot of the country, it doesn't need to be the case.  In fact, fall gardening can be a great end to the year!... read more

Worm Composting Dos and Don'ts


Keep it small. Keep it green. Keep it brown. And, keep it moist. If you want to maximize your composting results, there are clear do's and don'ts.

Many gardeners focus on a pile of garden and kitchen leftovers, layers of decomposing materials that form a nutritional soil amendment for the rest of the garden. But, composting with the help of hungry and efficient worms creates a nutrient-rich natural supplement your soil. 
... read more

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