Feel good about planting hollies. Not only do they provide great winter color, they help sustain birds and wildlife. Folklore has it that they’ll even ward off evil spirits, which is always helpful at the holidays or any time.
Indoor air pollution can make your life miserable. Luckily, there’s a wide variety of air purifiers to help you get the pollen, dust and smoke out of your living room. Here are our six choices to help you find the air purifier that works for you.
Bamboo, that renewable, quick-growing wood that’s really a grass, has been expanding across product lines, turning up on floors, in furniture, and towels. But let’s get back to where we started: Bamboo works great in the kitchen. Remember those bamboo salad bowls? They’re still around, but there are many more ways attractive, durable bamboo is being tapped for kitchen ware.
Our tired plain concrete patio becomes a testing ground for an eco-friendly make-over using soy- and water-based stains, sealers and etchers that we found at Tree House in Austin. See how the project came out!
Molly Earley Callahan didn’t set out to have a green wedding. She just wanted a casual but memorable affair, a special day filled with light and color, and happy relaxed guests.
Like all brides, she wanted good memories for herself and her groom, Dan Callahan, the wedding party and guests. She also didn’t want anyone to “break the bank” trying to dress for the day.
As we get ready for the spring garden, there’s plenty to do. We need to weed, compost and ready the beds. Inside, we’ve got seedlings we’re nursing along.
Yesterday, we began casting about for containers both for the larger seedlings and for herbs we may grow outside, which reminded me that we’ve seen a lot of cool re-purposing of containers for plants.
Here an old wash basin has been appropriated. We saw this outside an antique shop in the Midwest while on vacation last summer.
With the stricter light bulb standards beginning their phase-in this month, consumers will find many illuminating ways to cut their electricity use.
The new, energy-saving bulbs are the result of a 2007 mandate passed by Congress and signed by George W. Bush that light bulbs be made 25 percent more efficient. That has resulted in a renaissance of new bulbs that meet and exceed this threshold, a technology change that was already underway in 2007 and welcomed by the lighting industry and energy conservationists.
This holiday season millions of people will be surprised by their loved ones with new smart phones, game consoles, lap tops, DVRs and televisions and a gazillion other electronic gadgets.
Americans, especially, who bought $11.4 million in electronics just over the Black Friday weekend, are hopelessly in like with their computerized convenience items, gaming equipment and ever-expanding retinue of TVs.
But with the joy of ringing in the new, comes a new responsibility to not trash the old – especially when it comes to electronics.
Forgotten about green building during the economic swoon of the last two years? Rising energy costs and static incomes make it more important than ever as consumers look for added value and long-term energy savings.
Check out these top green residential projects from across the U.S., which demonstrate that green living is no longer just for the wealthy few.
1 – Postgreen’s 100K House in South Philly sets the mark for in-city affordability
Postgreen, a sustainable building and design company, wanted to address a demographic that was not being served in Philadelphia: Urban dwellers who want to live in a green property, but do not want to move to the suburbs or spend the money, typically $500,000 and up, for most builder’s green creations.
So the team set out to build its inaugural projects, the $100K and $120K infill homes in the sleekest, greenest, low-waste designs they could muster, while resisting the “bells and whistles” that drive prices up. They wanted the 100K home to come in at a building cost under $100 per square foot, so they had to work extra hard at efficiencies in all aspects of construction. The result: Two two-story loft homes with two bedrooms each priced at between $200,000 and $250,000, both on commute-free city lots, walking distance to subway and bus stops.
By John DeFore
Green Right Now
The sickening effects of atmospheric formaldehyde may have become a hot topic thanks to FEMA trailers after Hurricane Katrina, but the problem is hardly limited to mobile homes. Formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are a widespread health concern introduced to buildings through industrial textiles like carpeting and by materials, like plywood, that use certain adhesives.
That doesn’t mean we have to accept living in toxic rooms. Researchers in Korea have measured the extent to which household plants can clean the air, and their discoveries are encouraging.
By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now
Who are green consumers? And what do they want?
These are two questions being hashed about by marketers and businesses around the country as Americans become increasingly conscious of wanting products that are cleaner, less-toxic, verifiably sourced, responsibly made, and reasonable in the bargain.
Green consumers, it appears, do come in peace. And while they might not speak green. They’re willing to learn. That’s what Sarah Beatty has concluded after a few, fast and furious years in the green building and living supply business. She’s the founder and president of Green Depot stores, which is opening its seventh store this month after less than five years in the business.
By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now
For any given lighting job, you may find yourself confronted with several types of bulbs that could work — CFLs (compact fluorescent bulbs), a halogen or two or ten, and some of those ongoing, but supposedly outgoing, incandescents. Conversely, for specific needs, like say the flame-shaped bulbs you need for your chandelier, you might find the choices wanting, perhaps there’s an incandescent available, but not an EnergyStar CFL.
Check the label before you spray insect repellent on your kids this summer, and you may find that many insect repellents marketed for families and children contain DEET. Although the American Academy of Pediatrics has approved the use of DEET on children, the Academy recommends only applying these products once a day, and not on children younger than 2. So here’s our list of less toxic bug repellents: