Sustainability is about ecology, economy and equity.- Ralph Bicknese

Reusing Old Shoes

SHOE planterI recently came upon this awesome article about reusing shoes as planters, pretty much the best idea since literal flower beds. As someone who often takes the dirtier, messier, less sensible path to wherever I’m walking, I’m skilled at speeding up the process of wearing out shoes. When they finally become too broken to use for foot housing, it’s easy to just buy a new pair, move on and forget about them. But the truth is, not wearing shoes anymore doesn’t have to mean goodbye. Turning them into planters sounds like one of the most fun and creative sustainable ideas I’ve ever come across. To give it a shot, there are a few steps (sorry) you can take to prepare. Continue reading

Indoor Gardening with Vegetable Scraps

celSpeaking of spring break gardening projects, did you know that you can start growing celery indoors with the cut ends of a celery plant? Simply take your cut ends and put them in a shallow bowl of water, placing the bowl in a location that will get lots of sunlight. Make sure to change the bowl’s water every two or three days. From there, the inner areas of the cut ends will start to grow, and the outside will show signs of brown and rot-but fear not! This rotting is what feeds the new celery and spurs on its growth! Continue reading

Saving the Monarch Butterfly

butterflies-afasdIf you’re planning on doing some gardening this spring break, you should try and include some milkweed seeds in your planting. Why? Because the Monarch butterfly is in danger of becoming extinct, and it needs all the milkweed plants it can find. The decline is illustrated by the fact that only 33 million monarchs were estimated to have made their yearly migration from Canada to Mexico-compared to 1996’s one billion. Here on the west coast, the extension of urban territory has contributed greatly to the loss of Monarch habitat-milkweed plants, to be exact, the sole plant that Monarchs lay their eggs on. This is a rare example in which we humans have the ability to neutralize (or at least push back on) the loss of habitat we have created. Simply by planting milkweed seeds, we can help the species of Monarch butterflies grow strong in numbers once again, and prevent the possible loss that may come if nothing is done. Check out this site for info on finding the right kind of milkweed to plant.