Green Living

Mark Your Plants with Decorative Bamboo Labels

It’s empowering when you take pride in your gardening, and landscaping can significantly enhance your yard. However, if you have no idea what you planted, it can be challenging to find the same plants you liked when the previous ones died or were eat by animals. Instead of forgetting what plants you have purchased, label the plants in your yard clearly as a reminder.

The Bamboo House Plant Labels are not only convenient, but they are also made from a sustainable material. Three labels come in a plant, and you can use them inside or outside of your home. These also make excellent gifts for fellow gardeners.

These labels are simple but have a cute house design on them, so you don’t have to place them strategically in your yard where people can’t see them. You will actually want people to see this decorative plant labels.

Turn Your Backyard into the Bee’s Knees

Supporting your backyard wildlife is beneficial, because it keeps the local biodiversity alive. Bees can be temperamental insects, but they have vital duties, which support our ecosystem so do your part to help them survive.

The Pollinating Bee Log can be an interesting addition to your backyard. Basically it consists of a hollowed out log, which is stuffed with natural nesting tubes.

Because this log provides excellent insulation, mason bees and other species of solitary bees that don’t swarm can use it as a home during the winter.

This log measures 16 cm in length and about 13 cm in diameter. If you have a vegetable, herb, fruit or flower garden, you definitely want bees to be aiding in the pollination process.

Clean with the Sanitizing Power of Steam

When it comes to cleaning, steam seems to be the way the market is going. So if you don’t have a steam cleaning system yet, you might want to get on the bandwagon.

The Eureka 313A2 Enviro Hard-Surface Floor Steamer can clean and sanitize your floors without the use of harmful chemicals. Living a green lifestyle just got easier, didn’t it? This steamer has 6 1/2 amps of power as well as a light indicator that shows you when you’re out of water. You can adjust the height of the steamer, and it has a light weight design too.

The best part about this product is that it has a 12 1/2” cleaning head that does all of the work, and the pads are reusable. Now you don’t have to worry about having extra cleaning pads on hand, because you can just wash them and use them over again.

Repel Birds with an Eco-friendly Gadget

The birds in your backyard are beautiful to look at, especially if you’re an avid bird watcher. However, these melodious creatures can be pests when they choose your patio to be their bathroom. So how do you prevent them from doing their business where you enjoy eating?

The Solar Powered Bird Repeller is an eco-friendly way to stop birds from getting onto your patio, pool area, A/C unit, boat or car cover. This gadget functions off of the solar energy that it captures, and it has rotating arms that act as a scarecrow to nearby birds.

Since this green gadget is made from a weather-proof plastic, you can mount it anywhere. Also, there are steamers that you can attach that further ensure the birds are deterred from your property. Who knew that repelling birds could be so effortless?

Reclaimed Coconut Wall Tiles and Panels

If you’re tired of looking at those boring old painted walls, you might change things up with some eco-friendly wall coverings. These Kirei Coconut tiles are pretty unique, too: they’re made from reclaimed coconut shells. Yup, now you can drink the coconut milk, eat the sweet meat, and hang the shells on your walls.

The Kirei company is the same outfit that brought us those kirei-board cabinets back in the day (made from the fiber of the renewable sorghum plant), so it’s safe to say they know green.

The low-VOC tiles (12 inches square) and panels (48 inches square) are the perfect way to dress up your walls. They’re available in a number of patterns, color combinations, and textures, and don’t worry: they’re Class C fire-rated, so you needn’t worry about the coconut material being more flammable than other wall covering options.

More information at Kirei.

Easter Egg Tips, Part 2

Keeping the decorated eggs in the refrigerator enables you to eat them or transform them into egg salad or deviled eggs. By using natural dyes, you don’t have to worry about the colors contaminating the inside of the egg.

If you have a traditional Easter egg hunt for your children as well as the neighborhood, skip the plastic egg containers or make sure you reuse the ones from last year. An alternative to the plastic is cutting out the individual egg holders from egg cartons. These can be filled with candy, and you can use leftover holiday ribbon and wrapping paper to jazz it up. Instead of candy, fill a selected number of eggs with money or personalized coupons (“Redeemable for a movie night,” “Redeemable for a trip to the zoo”).

By thinking more creatively and using common household items, you can turn your Easter eggs and egg hunt into a unique experience that you friends, neighbors and children won’t forget.

Easter Egg Tips, Part 1

Decorating Easter eggs is a hands-on activity that children can’t resist, and there is an endless number of ways to color them. Some kids enjoy the tie-dyed ones while others turn the eggs into their favorite characters like Spongebob Squarepants. However, after the eggs have been transformed into works of art, where do they sit? Most likely at the kitchen table for a few days until they need thrown away. If you color eggs or have an egg hunt, there are some ways to make these activities less wasteful.

When dying your eggs, choose natural dyes as opposed to the ones that come in the egg coloring kits. For example, use items you already have in your house to create the colors. This includes purple grape juice/blueberries (lavender), spinach/grass clippings (green), pomegranate juice/cranberries (pink), paprika/chili powder (orange), red cabbage/blackberries (blue), lemon peels/ground cumin (yellow). All you need to do is boil your eggs in water and vinegar with one of your natural dyes for 15 minutes. Then your kids can use nontoxic crayons, markers or pens to add personalized details—when using crayons, it’s best to have them draw on the egg before boiling them.

Get Creative with That Extra Supply of Wood

What do you normally do with extra wood? If you burn it or send it to a landfill, you need to know that there are more eco-friendly options to deal with it. Recycling your surplus wood preserves forests. Trees significantly affect our air quality, and they provide habitats for many different animals. Deforestation is increasingly becoming an issue, so it’s important to take advantage of the wood you already have before buying new.

One of the easiest ways to use words scraps is for creating, repairing or inventing items for your home. For example, you can always make bird or bat houses and squirrel feeders out of wood, which will support your backyard wildlife. If you are more creative and handy with tools, you can create personalized holiday ornaments or toys. Sheets of wood can be sanded and stained so they can be used as trays or cutting boards. Also, don’t forget to use apple, oak or hickory tree wood to smoke meat.

Recycle Your Electronics

What can you do with your old computer when it doesn’t work anymore? While you can keep it somewhere in your home to collect dust, you can give it a new life by recycling it. Many companies actually specialize in recycling technology, so it’s not that difficult to find somewhere to take your broken down computer or other electronic gadgets.

Computers are categorized as e-waste, and when you recycle them it’s called e-cycling. According to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), the average American household owns 24 electronic products. Times that by the approximate number of families in the U.S. and you have a significant amount of items that will eventually become e-waste. This type of waste is only increasing exponentially, because our society improves and creates new technology every day.

When you buy electronics or a new computer, find out if the manufacturer offers recycling. For example, Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Apple accept old computers. If you enjoy electronics and are always buying newer models, donate your old, working computers to a school or organization that is in need of these types of supplies. You might even have a friend or family member who can benefit from using an older computer you have just lying around. Even if you go through cell phones, you can donate these to organizations that help families stay in contact with their loved ones who are over seas in the military.

Wooden Humidifier

Common humidifiers you buy at stores are plastic, bulky units that you plug into the wall. When you have these models, it’s hard to find a place to plug them in at, because you want to add more moisture into the air, but you don’t want anyone to see the ugly humidifier. Instead you can have a unit that doesn’t require electricity and adds interest to your space.

This Mast Humidifier is made from Japanese cypress, and it’s designed similar to a boat. In order to use it, you add water to the boat shaped bottom and then let the wood do the rest of the work. In addition to having more moisture in the air, you will also be able to enjoy the natural cypress scent.

You can purchase this wooden humidifier for $69 or 6,300 Yen. Just think…you can have better air without a higher electricity bill too.