Creating Community Through the Act of Gardening

“Through one simple, little act, we can cultivate a world that is more diverse, unified, and collaborative, and less divided and lonely – ultimately, a world more joyous and sustainable than this one through one simple act: gardening,” begins a riveting TEDTalk by Jasun “Plaedo” Wellman, a community organizer, educator, gardener, and artist. Gardening, he said, offers a practical remedy to many of society’s increasingly common ills – disconnection, depression, […]

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The Benefits of a Solar Heated Shower

There are few things that feel better than a nice warm shower. Showers are a place where we can be free to sing out loud, get in some quality deep thinking, and just relax. A traditional shower, however, can cost an average of fifty dollars a month per person for just ten minutes a day. The more devastating cost of a hot shower is the hundreds of pounds of carbon […]

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Earthships: A Sustainable and Alluring Housing Option

The homes that we live in are the epitome of industrial pillage of the earth. Massive amounts of cheaply built lumber teeming with damaging chemicals from the structure of our homes. To heat and cool our homes, fossil fuels are pumped into our homes leading to excessive greenhouse gas emissions. Despite the comforts and luxuries that modern-day housing offers, for the most part, it is one of the most unsustainable […]

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Tasty Radishes

Radishes (Raphanus sativus), with their zingy flavor and firm texture, are a vegetable I have grown to love. This member of the Brassicaceae or Cruciferae (Mustard) family, which also includes garden favorites such as Romanesco and Cauliflower, come in many varieties. The varieties of radishes are classified by their planting times (early, mid, or late), their root shape (flat, oblong, round, half-long and long), and their color. There are some […]

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Turn Your Sink and Shower Water into an Abundant Oasis

Chances are that you have probably heard of the importance of conserving water. Dozens of governmental and non-governmental organizations have orchestrated campaigns trying to convince the average person to reduce the amount of water that they use. From high-efficiency laundry machines to shower heads that are in line with the current national energy policy act standard, most advocacy for conserving household water use focuses on having us use less water. […]

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When Re-Using Isn’t the Answer

In an effort to cut down on waste, a common practice has been to re-use water bottles. While some people re-use the plastic bottles that are meant for one use, others invest in bulkier bottles made of stainless steel or glass for better quality. While re-using your water bottle rather than needing a few a day is better for the environment, is it really okay for your health? The answer […]

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How Much Can Plants Hear?

Plants may possess more complex senses than previously thought, according to a new study led by the University of Western Australia that has revealed that plants have the ability to both detect and respond to sound. Talking to plants has always been fairly common practice among many aboriginal tribes – and to this day, the most devoted gardeners will claim that playing classical music or providing words of positive reinforcement […]

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Productivity in the Temperate Understory

I started my permaculture journey in Central America. I was introduced to the term in Nicaragua. I spent time with it in Panama, Guatemala, and Belize. Then, I learned more in Colombia and southern Spain, Andalucía. What I’d never done until recently is spent much time—at least not with regards to permaculture—in cool temperate setting. Now, I’m in North Carolina, reimagining much of what I know and learning new plants […]

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The Importance of Developing a Sense of Territory

One of the defining aspects of indigenous cultures around their world is their connection to specific territories where they have lived for hundreds and thousands of years. Compared to modern-day western societies which are more defined by migrations and mobility, indigenous cultures have their lives and livelihoods demarcated by the specific conditions and context of their places. While these sorts of territorial limitations may seem to us westerners as undesirable […]

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Urban Sprawl and the Danger of the Loss of Wild Spaces

As ever larger portions of our world’s population move into cities, the growth of these cities and the resources they demand create more and more strains on local ecosystems. While urban spaces certainly do to offer a number of opportunities for many people, they don’t come without their costs. Very rarely have we collectively stopped to consider what our increasing urban identity means to our long-term survival and to the […]

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Celtuce or Stem Lettuce

Celtuce goes by many different names including Stem Lettuce, Chinese Lettuce, and Asparagus Lettuce. Celtuce (Lactuca sativa var. augustana, angustata, or asparagine) is the most unique of the five lettuce varieties. Originating in the Mediterranean, like most lettuces, it then arrived in China around 600 A.D., making its way to the western world in the 19th century. Not Like the Others What makes Celtuce so unique is that, unlike the […]

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Top Soil: A Catalyst for Better Health and Nutrition

Where We Stand Without Soil Everything begins and ends with the soil. Unfortunately, close to 70% of it has been lost since the dawn of the agricultural revolution. Since the onset of the Green Revolution only half a decade ago, we´re getting rid of it faster than ever. Besides the ecocide that the loss of topsoil entails, it also is a major threat to our health. Most foods grown by […]

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