In Our Nature

“They say I’m old-fashioned, and live in the past, but sometimes I think progress progresses too fast!”                                                 ~ The Lorax by Dr. Seuss When I first started a garden, I rented a rototiller to break up the stiff soil, made neat rows and added fertilizer with every seed. It worked out reasonably well, but […]

A Bug in Your Ear

… It is not a sentimental but a grimly literal fact that unless we share this terrestrial globe with creatures other than ourselves, we shall not be able to live on it for long.                                 ~ Joseph Wood Krutch “The truth is that we need invertebrates, but they don’t need us. If human beings were […]

It’s a Wrap

I remember sack lunches from my school days.  PB&J or tuna salad sandwiches wrapped up in wax paper (or those wax paper bags that came out later), or sometimes bologna with a slice of processed cheese. Always on plain white Wonder Bread — the “American way.” Potato chips or Fritos (when they came out, after […]

Put the “Cycle” Back in in Recycle

Neoliberalism, as a loosely defined set of political beliefs, calls for more individual freedom and autonomy, resulting in increased responsibility for each person to address major societal issues. ‘Individualization’ is the process by which responsibility for addressing major environmental issues such as climate change is placed on individuals.                                                 ~ Sydney A. Page-Hayes I take […]

One Word: “Plastics”

“Mr. McGuire: I want to say one word to you. Just one word. Benjamin: Yes, sir. Mr. McGuire: Are you listening? Benjamin: Yes, I am. Mr. McGuire: Plastics. Benjamin: Exactly how do you mean? Mr. McGuire: There’s a great future in plastics. Think about it. Will you think about it?” ~The Graduate, 1967 Plastics appear […]

Where You Gonna Grow?

In recent years, scientists have documented countless species shifting their ranges toward the poles, higher into the mountains, and deeper into the seas in response to the changing climate. ~ Sonia Shah As our group of volunteers spread out across the buffer zone of the former nuclear weapons plant, we gathered native grass seeds to […]

Like Legos

“… it was all about refurbishing and reusing existing buildings. Wainright’s meaning is much more sophisticated; we may not keep every building forever, but if they are designed for deconstruction we can keep using all the parts. That’s the way to truly ban demolition.” ~ Lloyd Alter It was a hard lesson for a young […]

Down and Dirty

“It’s like magic,” he explained, “You drop a seed into the dirt, add a little water and you get squash! It’s like Jack and the Beanstalk.” The kindergartener was all excited after his day at school where the teacher had talked about plants and growing — and I had to bite my tongue as I […]

Bug Me No More?

“Climate change, loss of natural habitats and overexposure to pesticides are among the factors contributing to the decline of insects, including once-common species of flies, butterflies, beetles, bees and numerous others. More than two-thirds of all caddisfly populations have disappeared in the past decade.” ~ Johnny Wood The smell of insect repellent pervaded the camp […]