Happy Earth Day 2009! For Earth Day this year, we planted a pink dogwood. Scott dug the hole just as deep and twice as wide as the container the tree came in. Then we mixed in some compost with the native soil, loosened the root ball, planted and mulched the tree. We even took the grass Scott dug up to make the hole for the tree and replanted it in a bare spot in the lawn.
This is a good day to celebrate what you do that's good for the Earth, and make a list of things you would like to do better. There is a fantastic article in this month's National Wildlife Federation magazine called "How Green is Your Garden?" We all know that planting drought-tolerant, native species is good, and chemical fertilizers are bad. This article goes much further, and I highly recommend it if you can get your hands on the magazine.
Ten things we do (or don't do) that make the Earth happy:
- We compost or recycle almost all of our "trash"
- We mulch to conserve water
- We use fallen limbs for plant supports
- The only chemical I use in the yard or garden is Roundup for Poison Ivy/Oak
- I use integrated pest management in the garden
- We provide food, water and shelter for birds
- We buy recycled toilet paper and paper towels
- We unplug the toaster when it's not in use
- I'm a vegetarian (I know the effects of meat production on the environment are controversial, and I'm not looking for a fight. My main reason for being a veg is that I love animals and don't want to eat them!)
- We have low-flow showerheads (and they are actually awesome!)
Six (of many) things I need to work on:
- Buying locally-grown produce/supporting local farmers
- Easy energy conservation: installing more weather-stripping, unplugging more things that aren't being regularly used ("energy vampires")
- Being responsible with my plant choices. Not-so-angry-redhead had a great post about responsible tree choices recently.
- Conserving water
- Tending my compost piles more, so I'll get more compost and have to buy fewer soil amendments
- Generally consuming less (when it comes to gardening, but also in general). This was a big part of the NWF article. I am going to make a concerted effort to buy good quality gardening tools that won't need to be replaced as often, and use found items or other things I already have when possible.
What do you already do or plan to do that makes Earth happy?