by Samantha Javier @ 9:26 am 1 comment »
Gardens are one of the best ways to take a step towards being sustainable and green. Nature’s Path promotes the belief that “everyone has the right to fresh, organic, and chemical-free food“.
In order to encourage organic gardening further, Nature’s Path has its Gardens for Good Grant competition, which has recently ended and the winners have been announced! The winners are: the Michigan Urban Farming Initiative, Tri-Isle Resource Conservation & Development Council, Inc., and rare Charitable Research Reserve!
Each of the winners will do their part by providing organic food for the communities that really need it. And of course Nature’s Path is happy to partner with Organic Gardening magazine to contribute a $15,000 grant to each of the winners to improve and continue their programs. The winners worked their way to the top of 153 entries and 9 finalists through online votes as well as their inspirational ways they described their project, the feasibility to establish and maintain the garden, and those that demonstrated community need.
- The Michigan Urban Farming Initiative will transform vacant land plots and buildings into “agriculture-based resources from education programing to large-scale community gardens.” With their newly won grant they can now get the buildings going and start making immense progress!
- The Tri-Isle Resource Conservation & Development Council, Inc. is working in Maui to build a self-sufficient community in regards to food through educating locals and maintaining a garden. Their Goodwill Garden grows produce for weekly donations to organizations that feed the hungry!
- Finally, the rare Charitable Research Reserve is a 900+ acre nature reserve in southern Ontario. They have community gardens allowing people of all ages to participate and grow their own food, a great sustainable initiative.
Monday, December 2, 2013
by Samantha Javier @ 2:09 pm 1 comment »
If you’re like me and you love aquarium fish as well as potted plants in your home then you’ll definitely be interested in Aquasprouts. This is a neat gift idea as well as something unique to decorate your home. The aquarium is an educational aquaponic system, sure to be a crowd-pleaser. Austin, Texas-based and made in the USA, Aquasprouts combines both fish and plants into one compact, fun unit.
The aquarium is a closed loop system so that the device is sustainable and efficient for buyers. They are also self-cleaning, self-fertilizing, support fish and also grows plants in a symbiotic relationship. I was amazed that the aquariums are filterless so you don’t have to worry about messy cleanup. The system enables you to grow basil, mint, or other herbs allowing you to always have produce at hand. It can also be implemented in classrooms or for children as a learning experience about ecosystems, earth cycles, aquaculture, and gardening.
The systems are a little pricey and there are only two options of 5.5 gallons and 10 gallons at $250 and $280. However, this includes everything you need and you’ll never have to change the filter or clean it again and you will always have food growing which also saves you a lot of money. I suggest you check out this interesting product and the video under their “About Us” section for yourself at: www.aquasprouts.com
by Ross Dulmaine @ 12:03 am post a comment »
If you survived Black Friday and the indignity of those new Thanksgiving Day blitzkrieg sales – or you boycotted the whole contrived marketing scam that Black Friday has become – you now have the opportunity to order all your goodies direct from the internet on Cyber Monday. No driving for miles to buy something your probably don’t need – no mob scenes, fist fights and fighting over parking spots – just good old American internet shopping – all the buying without the emissions.
Leading the list of Cyber Monday venues is, of course, Amazon.com, one of the originators of this concept (like many retailers Amazon’s deals actually started Sunday). Amazon is offering a week’s worth of daily deals with the commensurate countdown clock and free shipping. Check out their deals on their Cyber Monday page. Of particular interest may be Amazon’s deals on flat screen TVs, many of which are Energy Star approved.
If your taste trends more to handmade items created by real people, look no further than Etsy.com where hundreds of handmade eclectic items are for sale. Many of the handmade items use ec0-friendly materials like the recycled sterling silver in this ring (above) from naturaleza organic jewlery. (more…)
Sunday, December 1, 2013
by Samantha Javier @ 4:07 pm post a comment »
’tis the season … If you’re like me and you love to try new things, especially regarding cooking, Seasonal Spices may be just the thing for you. Launched on Kickstarter, and having received full funding, they will begin delivering its dried spices this month.
After all, variety is the spice of life … but there are so many spices out there. And it’s always difficult to choose which ones to try — whether you’re at the store or your local farmer’s market, but Seasonal Spices makes that process much simpler in a unique way.
If you sign on, each month you will receive a package with a set of freshly ground spices in small, pre-measured quantities, along with recipes to use them in and information about the spices themselves! Whether it is because of the season or just to give you something new to try, this little package of spices can sure come in handy to those who like to cook.
Eco perks: It not only saves you time, it also cuts back on toxic emissions as you won’t have to use gas or create carbon dioxide on your way to a store — just to stand in front of the spice rack wondering what to get! Also, you won’t waste the bottles and jars or space the spices come in and take up because Seasonal Spices come in a small, smart recyclable zip-lock and cardboard container.
The costs are low: you can buy a 3-month supply for $18 and a 6-month supply for $36, which means it’s $6 a month to get spices delivered right to your door. It’s very convenient and the dried spices available for the next few months are listed on the Kickstarter Project page for you to peruse. The brainchild of Brooklyn-based Tara Susan, I highly recommend checking out this unique, new service …
By the way, since the project received funding, you can also check out their Facebook page.
Friday, November 29, 2013
by Maureen O'Connor @ 12:33 pm 2 comments »
Here’s our interpretation of Black Friday – a roundup of earth-friendly fashion in black…
I love the unique cowl neck on this handmade blouse. This casual top packs a lot of simple style. Made to order to your size and specs from super-soft organic cotton jersey – muy delicioso. $68 from thimble + acorn
Here’s a bag for the hardcore urbanite (or wanna be). The ‘Imma’ handbag – which has been created from recycled truck inner tubes and seatbelt material – will add add a little edge to any outfit. Tough, waterproof and loaded with attitude… Made in the UK – $107 from Katcha Bilek
This layered, black Lola dress is made from a blend of rayon bamboo (it’s renewable), cotton and a touch of Spandex for stretchability. Features an eye-catching spiral image on the bottom of the dress. $200 from the Funky Buddha Collection
This casual vegan bootie is the creation of Portugal’s Novacas – a brand dedicated to providing animal and environment-friendly footwear of the highest quality. The ankle-high ‘Janis’ boot is made of faux suede and is made for casual romping about. Find it @ vickerey.com
And that wraps up this week’s collection of favorite eco fashion finds – stop by every Friday for my little roundup of vegan and earth-friendly faves.
related: more eco fashion finds on AlternativeConsumer.com
Wednesday, November 27, 2013
by Maureen O'Connor @ 11:33 am 1 comment »
Have a fabulous Thanksgiving! Here are a few easy tips to make your Turkey Day a more earth-friendly celebration.
- If you’re driving to Grandma’s use the cruise control and avoid those quick stops and starts – you’ll save on gas and emissions and you may not spill the gravy…and by all means carpool.
- Spring for a free range bird – you’ll be rewarded with good karma and a healthier, tastier meal…
- Avoid all disposable utensils, plates and paper goods (save those trees and avoid that landfill). Use reusable napkins, china, utensils and glassware.
- Dirty dish patrol – spare the younguns’ (do kids still do dishes?) and use the dishwasher – it actually saves H2O.
- Donate some of your excess chow to a local soup kitchen or family in need.
- Make the family participate in a board game or group activity for a little quality time – no computers, smartphones or video games. The family that plays together, stays together…
- If you’re going to shop go local and think small – stay out of the big box stores…
- Weather permitting, get outside and enjoy the fall. Compost some leaves, clean up the beach, or just go for an invigorating walk.
related: more green tips on alternativeConsumer.com