Garden of Delight

My garden is something of a chaotic mess this year. Luckily, at this time of year, I am deluged with gardening advice — most of which I should have heard and applied in late spring. Of course, the key to a ‘perfect’ garden is always intent. What kind of garden do you want? Flowers? Vegetables? […]

Late-Comers

Sometimes it is a little better to travel than to arrive. ~ Robert M. Persig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance I don’t watch horror movies, but a consistent plot seems to be that someone builds a new house over an old cemetery, and the evil dead rise up through the floor to terrorize […]

Pines in Lines

Once, while studying groundwater contamination at an air base in Florida, I was taken to several old, abandoned landfills to determine which of them should be drilled for testing. One presented a real problem: In the twenty years since it had been closed, the landfill had been planted with pine trees — part of the […]

How High’s the Water, Mama?

How high’s the water, Mama? Five feet high and risin’. How high’s the water, Papa? She said it’s five feet high and risin’. Well, the rails are washed out north of town. We gotta head for higher ground. We can’t come back till the water goes down, Five feet high and risin’ ~ Johnny Cash, […]

Walk the Talk

“These are the consequences of the old ways with which I feel easiest: walking as enabling sight and thought rather than encouraging retreat and escape; paths as offering not only means of traversing space, but also ways of feeling, being and knowing.” ~ Robert Macfarlane Our elementary school was about six blocks from my house. […]

Keep Off the Grass

“In every town and city today, cutting across parks and waste ground, you’ll see unofficial paths created by walkers who have abandoned the pavements and roads to take short cuts and make asides. Town planners call these improvised routes ‘desire lines’, or ‘desire paths’.” ~ Robert Macfarlane In the mountain parks I know, one rule […]

Plan Ahead

“The message is clear and so is the pathway. But time is running out. We need to take a bold stand and act upon it now.” ~ Nicole Schwab and Kristin Rechberger Long ago, when I was working on the Navajo Reservation, there was a winter flood. Although few homes were directly impacted, the heavy […]

Green and Easy

“Pollinators are important. Really important … The world’s pollinator species — including bees, flies, beetles and butterflies — are required by more than 85 percent of the flowering plants for reproduction. More than 100 crops in the U.S. need or benefit from pollinators, adding up to about $3 billion a year in economic value.” ~ […]

Do Straws Really Suck?

“We are drowning the sea in plastic.” ~ Melissa Breyer   “Would you like a straw?” the waitress asked. I hesitated. While I really like drinking my iced tea through a straw, visions of dying sea creatures and piles of trash on the beaches invaded my thinking. The photos of sea trash and stories of […]

The Opportunity of The Retail Apocalypse

“They paved paradise And put up a parking lot Don’t it always seem to go That you don’t know what you’ve got ‘Till it’s gone” ~ Joni Mitchell, Big Yellow Taxi It was basically a 50’s strip mall that occupied two sides of a square block, with room for plenty of parking in the middle […]