Dandelion Chandelier - Super cool design idea
KQED, the PBS member station for the San Francisco Bay Area, has an interesting article (the title, of which, I shamelessly ripped off) about the increasing adoption of artificial turf by home owners as a means of reducing water usage. We can attest to this as we recently installed a playground for a school that replaced 20k of grass with artificial turf. We've also seen adoption at the high end of residential homes to facilitate private soccer and play fields with the goal of both safety (we put 1" pads below the turf) and water usage. Note that some cities and county's have very strict water usage limits and so artificial turf is a good solution for hydrozone plans.
A side benefit of artificial turf is that maintenance can dropped significantly.
The article discusses how municipalities have created and increased incentives towards adoption. Although true, getting the credits can be tricky so be sure you understand what's required and stick to the mandated protocols.
I have mixed feeling about artificial turf given the fact that we tend to deal in natural materials most of the time. But reality is a series of trade-offs and so having water to drink is probably the more dominant consideration.
List of rebate programs, here.
From the MICHAEL TORTORELLO of the New York Times comes this hilarious quote:
A seed should be fecund, no apologies. Yet certain vegetables may advertise their potency a little too insistently. That is, anatomically. O.K., pornographically.
Don't worry, this article is Rated G. Michael discusses the art packaging of heirloom seeds on display at the New York Botanical Garden but will come to Santa Rosa next year at the National Heirloom Exposition.
Need a pretty interesting and small gifts for a few gardeners friends and family? Have a look at these clever seeds packs.
With the rise of veggie gardens and chicken coups comes the newest bask to basics - a mini home on wheels. Cozy, portable, and, if done correctly, beautiful. A sign of that this is on the rise coming from the NYT in an article entitled "Cuddle Up in This: A Passion for Vintage Trailers".
I am proud to say we have seen some of our clients ahead of the curve on this having curated specific areas on their property to house their Airstreams for routine use when not on a camping adventure.
The idea of having a small intimate space away from the intellectual and spiritual baggage of a big house make sense. Plus you can roll it away. Feels like we are tapping into a deeply rooted American value around freedom and, even, the American Frontier (symbolically).
Back to the basics - again. What next?
Another interesting grass roots effort to restore biodiversity. In this case, its apples that are the subject. A single person, working on his own, has undertaken the effort to catalogue every species of apple: http://nyti.ms/1CXXeMq
I am sure everyone from individual gardeners to commercial farmers will thank him in the future.
There is information in the article if you'd like to visit some of the farms growing heirloom apples - or if you'd like to buy a tree of your own.