SustainAbility, Dealing with dandelions

QUICKREAD

EARTH DAY REMINDER

Earth Day events are today at the Mesa County Fairgrounds from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Admission is free, so be there or be square.

Tonight is A Taste of Western Colorado, an event to raise funds for a community garden on land donated by Koinonia Church.

Sitting times for the dinner made from local foods are 5:30 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. and tickets can be purchased at the door for $15.

Gardening talks, music and a silent auction are all part of the festivities.

Call Linda Stout at 243-7049 for information.

• • •

To the special reader who called my editor, Ann Wright: You can recycle catalogs and magazines with other papers through curbside recycling with Waste Management or GJ Curbside Recycling Indefinitely, depending on where you live.

You also can recycle them at the drop-off centers for both companies or at the recycling area of the Mesa County Landfill. Thanks for caring.

— Adele Israel



As we travel the long and winding road toward a fully sustainable lifestyle, it is not unusual to take a few steps forward and then fall one step back.

This spring, I am noticing all the opportunities to decrease my carbon footprint.

At the same time, after 17 years of resistance, I have finally relented and agreed that my husband should go ahead and use chemicals on those insidious dandelions in our front yard.

My super smart, biology/master gardener friend, Lorna Naegele, broke the bad news while I was trying to find an organic method to eradicate dandelions.

Without missing a beat, Lorna, a very environmentally conscious individual, informed me 2-4-D is the way to go.

The first application took place last weekend, and the few yellow invaders who have dared to show their heads are shriveling up and expiring.

Meanwhile, I have developed a special relationship with used books.

Is it just coincidental that last Sunday I attended a fantastic workshop at The Blue Pig Gallery in Palisade called “Altered Books” just after starting a new job at a used bookstore? I think not.

Judith Cassel-Mamet braved the Divide to show a dozen of us local yokels how to turn books headed for the landfill into works of art.

I am not generally a craft person, but this concept really captured my imagination. Go to http://www.jcmamet.net/gallery.html to get a glimpse of Judith’s projects.

Maybe the rapid approach of Earth Day on Thursday has raised my awareness, but lately I have noticed many of my new purchases are environmentally friendly.

I only discovered this when taking the tags off, even when I’ve not been specifically trying to buy green.

A shirt was fashioned from surplus fabrics to “conserve precious natural resources” keeping “thousands of pounds of textiles out of landfills,” according to the tag.

The new wooden back scrubber I bought for the shower was made of bamboo, “one of the most sustainable resources and environmentally sound plants on Earth.”

I picked up some cat toys called “Flutter Spout” at Tuesday Morning only to learn from reading information on the minimal packaging that the fabric and fiberfill are made from recycled materials and the feathers are natural, undyed and biodegradable.

I have also continued to make conscious choices to purchase greener products such as organic socks from Natural Grocers and an Eco-Friendly nonstick 11-inch square grill pan from Herberger’s.

The grill pan uses a nonstick technology that creates a PTFE/PFOA-free and petroleum-free ceramic-based surface. It also has energy-saving high heat conductivity, a handle made from recycled stainless steel and packaging made from recycled material and printed with soy ink.

Last week, I bought a used vacuum cleaner for Parish, my future son-in-law, from The Salvation Army store on Ute Avenue.

I paid only a fraction of the price of a new one, even taking into account repairs made by Eastgate Vacuum owner, Bob Kline.

I received ecocoupons for “Bright Green” cleaning products during a shopping trip to Safeway.

The Spring Edition 2010 of the P&G brandSaver from my copy of The Daily Sentinel featured a “future friendly lifestyle” focused on “taking small steps to save resources.”

In 2010, eco-awareness has gone mainstream in a big way.

Adele Israel is a Grand Junction writer who has been involved in sustainability efforts for some 20 years. Have a question or column idea for Adele? E-mail her at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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