Vendor Spotlight: BioBag

BioBag

We’re proud to say that we are now carrying the full line of BioBag products.  We like BioBag because they are made from plants, vegetable oils and their famous Mater-Bi.  If you don’t know, Mater-Bi is a bio-polymer that is completely biodegradable and compostable and can be consumed by micro-organisms found in soil.

As a company, they’re small, committed and dedicated to one thing, making certified compostable bags and films.  Plain and simple.  Not some large chemical conglomerate with a side division of “eco-friendly” products to appease their stockholders.  Their products meet ASTM D6400 specifications and they fully support California law for biodegradable and compostable product claims.

Products include dog waste bags (poop bags), sandwich bags, cling wrap, lawn and leaf bags, kitchen compost bags, resealable food storage bags.

Check out all of BioBag’s products and tell us your favorite BioBag uses.

Eco Friendly Winter Tips

I think most of us would agree that winter got here early and blasted us with frigid temps, snow and ice storms!  But, truth be told, winter actually started on December 21st and going to hang around until March 19th.  So now that I have thoroughly depressed you, let’s get back to the point.  Some tips that we can employ during these winter months to conserve and be a little more eco friendly in this colder weather.

  1. Turn the thermostat down – I know, you’ve heard this a bazillion times so I won’t belabor the point, so just do it, so I can move on to something else 🙂
  2. Get a REAL Christmas tree – Yup, believe it or not, chopping down a real tree is better than a fake one.  Why?  Because the fake ones are made from toxic and non-biodegradable materials generally shipped from overseas and in the end, go into a landfill to never decompose!  Find a local tree farm where they continually replant trees and then recycle/compost your tree when it’s done.  Many cities/counties have tree pick ups or drop offs after the holidays for you or if they don’t you can visit Earth 911 to see where you can “treecycle”.

    Eco Friendly Christmas Tree

    Cut your own eco friendly Christmas tree.

  3. Skip the Salt – We know that salt works great for de-icing sidewalks but it’s horrible for the plants, contaminates the water supply and it can even corrode concrete!  Instead, try to do a better job shoveling 🙂  and if you need to add something, put some sand down and that will give your visitors the needed traction to help prevent slipping and making it on Funniest Home Videos.
  4. Fireplace friendly – When you’re not using your fireplace, make sure you close the damper in the chimney to prevent cold air and drafts from blowing into the house.  If you’re going to use your fireplace make sure you try to avoid using some of those fake logs that use paraffin which is a waxy like petroleum-based byproduct.  Old fashioned real wood works great.  Or you can find logs made from recycled materials like wood or even coffee grounds!  I bet that smells great!!  Often times these recycled logs put out more BTU’s or heat and much less toxic fumes.

DIY Eco-Friendly Mosquito Trap

We all hate them.  Bugs!  Mosquitoes, no see um, gnats etc etc.  Pesky, biting and flying in your face when all you want to do is have a good time without slapping yourself.  Sure, we can bathe in toxic and chemical based repellents or you can even go the more eco route with insect repellent made from all natural ingredients.  But sometimes we just want to sit and relax and not have to worry about any of that.  So what are you do to?  Build your own Eco-Friendly Mosquito Trap!

Yup, no need for sprays of chemicals, patches, ground applications etc.  This is an easy project for you and you probably already have the ingredients at home ready to go!

Trap Parts:

  • Empty 2 liter bottle (or something of similar size)
  • 1 Cup Water
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Gram Yeast
  • Black paper or plastic
  • Tape
  1. Take the bottle and cut the top 1/4 off.  basically around where the tapering ends.
  2. Next heat up 1 cup of water and add the 1/2 cup of brown sugar and stir until it’s completely dissolved.
  3. Once it cools, pour mixture into the bottom of the bottle.
  4. Add the 1 gram of yeast, no stirring necessary.
  5. Flip the top over and place it on the bottom, so that it’s inverted.
  6. Tape the seam of the bottle.
  7. Wrap the bottle in black paper or plastic.
  8. Set out for the mosquitoes.
Eco friendly mosquito trap

Eco friendly mosquito trap

Here’s what happens.  The mosquitoes are attracted to the black and dark places in addition to the carbon dioxide that the yeast generates.  Once they fly down into the trap the sugar solution will make it too sticky for them to get out and the narrow opening makes it very difficult for the few that don’t touch the solution.

You do not want to place this right next to where you’ll be sitting as some strays might bite you.  I mean, you don’t put out a trap and just sit there.  Instead, place this a little ways from where you’re sitting.

This solution should last a week or 2 and you can just recreate it after that time.  You’ll be amazed at the number of mosquitoes this catches!  Otherwise, you can put up some bat houses to attract bats since they like to eat thousands of mosquitoes each day (or night I guess).

 

Ecoditty – Reusable sandwich bags from organic cotton

You may have seen the Facebook post or the tweet we made announcing that we now are carrying the Ecoditty line of sandwich and snack bags.  We like them.  They’re eco friendly.  You should like them too :)

Why?

Well, they’re good substitutes for plastic bags.  Seriously, how many of these bags do you go through, like half a bajillion?  Ya, thought so.  Instead of using those baggies, you can now put your kiddo’s sandwich in these sandwich bags that are made from 100% organic cotton.  No plastics, chemicals or BPA coming into contact with your food.  How cool is that?

Then to top it off, all the sandwich and snack bags by Ecoditty are sewn in Colorado, USA.

We put together a short video with some of their products.  Enjoy.
Ecoditty Reusable Bags

Vendor Spotlight – Ecoditty

You may have seen the Facebook post or the tweet we made announcing that we now are carrying the Ecoditty line of sandwich and snack bags.  We like them.  They’re eco friendly.  you should like them too 🙂

Why?

Well, they’re good substitutes for plastic bags.  Seriously, how many of these bags do you go through, like half a bajillion?  Ya, thought so.  Instead of using those baggies, you can now put your kiddo’s sandwich in these sandwich bags that are made from 100% organic cotton.  No plastics, chemicals or BPA coming into contact with your food.  How cool is that?

Then to top it off, all the sandwich and snack bags by Ecoditty are sewn in Colorado, USA.

We put together a short video with some of their products.  Enjoy.
Ecoditty Reusable Bags

Farmer’s Market Time

Yup, it’s that time again!  Time to get out and venture into the farmer’s markets.  All sorts of fresh fruit, veggies, herbs and flowers abound!  We even have locally raised meats to select from too!  The nice thing is that many of these products are organic and grown locally, but you should ask to make sure because some vendors are basically buying stock from like supermarkets or suppliers so it’s no different than what you’d get at your regular supermarket.

Farmer's Market

Farmer’s Market

It’s always buzzing with freshness all around at these markets.  In our area, there’s a few to select from as you can probably hit like 4-5 of them all within 20 minutes of each other.  Even some of the smaller communities have their own markets, which are generally just smaller versions of the bigger ones.  So, yeah, there is a smaller selection but still they have most of the common produce that people look for and it’s better than nothing.

Some vendors even give out free samples so you can taste the freshness before making a purchase.  Really helpful when checking out the different meats or breads being offered.  Plus, it helps in making and creating those relationships with like minded people and is an excellent opportunity to learn more about what eco friendly and healthy options are available in your area.

Or, you can skip the market and start your own veggie garden at home.  You can start by planting some SeedBallz or grab some of your own seeds and use some organic fertilizer and add it to your own homemade compost to get those seeds sprouting.  Soon you’ll have your own mini farmer’s market right there in your backyard.

Don’t forget that any leftover scraps can then be recycled back into your DIY Compost Bin to create more nutrient dense soil for your plantings.  Pretty soon you can set up shop at your own local farmer’s market selling your fresh produce goods!

 

Happy Arbor Day!

Arbor Day Tree

Happy Arbor Day

Happy Arbor Day everyone!  Yup, it seems like we just celebrated Earth Day, because, well, we just did haha.  Arbor Day falls on the last Friday in April so it’s always around Earth Day which always falls on April 22.

Arbor Day is a day when people are encouraged to plant and care for trees.  That’s it!  It’s all about the trees.

I mean, they do help us out too.  Think anything that uses wood, paper or oxygen benefits from trees!  Then you can get into the fruits, berries, nuts and saps used for health and nourishment.  Keeping this brief we won’t go into great detail about things like shade, natural habitats, natural windbreaks, increased property value, preventing soil erosion, etc., etc.  And that’s the just the big stuff since trees are so important for us, so it’s good for us to give back to them at least once a year.

I remember as a kid growing up, my dad was always into planting trees.  He’d always get some seedlings from a mail order or even from various fairs or events where the DNR or Arbor Day group was handing out free trees and bring them home to plant.  Some made it and some didn’t.  He likes to brag about the ones that do survive because nowadays some are pretty big and he planted them when we were much younger (back when I was a kid and really didn’t pay attention to what he was doing, and well honestly, care about planting trees).  But now I do care 🙂

So you should care too and go out and plant some trees!  I have a few trees I’ll be working on this afternoon, do you?

Arbor Day Foundation has trees available for purchase so buy a case or 2 and green up your neighborhood.
http://www.arborday.org/Shopping/BulkSeedlings/

For you’re viewing pleasure, here’s some photos put together by Huffington Post on some of the world’s more famous trees:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/26/arbor-day-2013_n_3158030.html

Happy Earth Day

Earth day is celebrating her 43rd birthday!  This year, the theme for Earth Day is the “Face of Climate Change”.  The “change” has already begun and we are always seeing the results in our lives and the lives of animals and nature.

Every year at this time, I’m always brought back to the days of grade school and even high school where we did a clean-up day.  We went outside the school and neighboring parks and picked up all the trash and garbage we could find.  I’m sure we thought it was a bigger deal to not be in the classroom as it was just another excuse to be outside, but looking back I can appreciate what we were doing and would advocate that today.

If you’re interested in doing something on Earth Day but aren’t sure where to begin or what to do, you can check out the “A Billion Acts of Green” for ideas and suggestions of things to do.  You can submit your own ideas and commit to certain projects as well, like the Canopy Project.  The Canopy project’s goal is to plant 10 million trees in the next 5 years in impoverished areas around the world.  By doing this, they can help play an important role in alleviating poverty, helping rural people avoid poverty and helping those that are poor mitigate their plight.  Yup, just by planting trees!  Crazy, right?

So get out of the house or office today and do something for your Mother Earth.  I mean, she’s put up with you this whole time 😉 so you can do a little something for her today.  See if you can add a few more green acts to the list.  It’s not as hard as you think and you might even enjoy it!  What do you say?

SeedBallz – Easily plant flowers, vegetables and herbs indoors or outside

SeedBallz let you plant flowers, plants, vegetables and even herbs just by placing the balls in the ground.  You don’t even have to bury them!

DIY Compost Bin

Just in time for spring, we have an easy DIY project that can you give that extra boost to your gardens!  I know we’ve been talking an awful lot about those little SeedBallz because they’re a 1 step flower, but you want to garden beyond what the ballz can offer you.  To do that, you need to have a good soil and a nice source of compost.  However, many people think they have to buy some fancy $100+ composting contraption to make their own compost.  Wrong!  Plus, why spend the extra money on compost when you can easily make your own!

What can you compost?
Some excellent compost materials include: Fruits and vegetables, coffee grounds/filters, egg shells, fireplace ashes, tore up newspapers (basically newspaper in smaller pieces), grass and leaves.

What NOT to compost?
Pet waste, fish or meat bones, plants or grass that has had chemicals or been diseased.

Here’s a link to the EPA’s composting page for more details on what you can and cannot compost.

Here’s a quick and easy composting bin you can make for under $20.
Materials Needed:

  • Large trash can with a locking lid (or screws on)
  • Small platform like a wooden plant stand on wheels (to keep can off the ground)
  • Screws (to attach platform to the trash can)
  • Drill with a large drill bit

Instructions:

  1. Take your drill and attach the large drill bit.  We’re going to make about 25 holes in the trash can using the drill.  Make sure to include some in the lid and in the bottom.
  2. Now attach the trash can to the wooden platform using the screws and drill.  Make sure to not cover up the holes on the bottom you just made, otherwise, if you did, just drill new holes on the bottom.  This platform will allow your compost to drain as well as circulate air flow to the compost.
  3. Start composting!  Just add compost items that we discussed above.
  4. About 1-2 times a week, go out and roll the trash can around (making sure the lid is locked on) for a couple minutes.
  5. Keep adding compost as you “create” it.
  6. Use the soil when ready.
  7. Repeat!
Homemade Compost Bin

Homemade Compost Bin

Now, that you have your nutrient rich compost, you’re ready to start planting away.  If you require an another little boost, you can even add some fish fertilizer to your newly created soil or add to your existing beds by using Neptune’s Harvest Fertilzers.

Not a bad compost bin for $20, eh?  What composting tips do you have?

Copyright © All Rights Reserved · Green Hope Theme by Sivan & schiy · Proudly powered by WordPress