Tools for Green Living

FEELING BUGGED?

Does warm weather leave you deciding whether to be eaten alive by mosquitoes, use dangerous bug sprays, or stay inside? Bugs B Wear has a solution that will allow you to enjoy being outdoors. Simply fill its attractive sterling silver jewelry with a citrus-scented oil to naturally repel mosquitoes, gnats, bees and wasps. The oil is 100 percent plant derived and consists of a combination of citronella, mint and lemongrass. A variety of earrings, necklaces, pins and anklets all come with a velvet pouch to store both the jewelry and oil. Styles cost $28, including the oil, which can be refilled for $5.

CONTACT

Bugs B Wear
(877) 877-7879

—Molly Dubow


ALL CREATURES WELCOME…

If you have a pesticide-free lawn this spring, why not advertise it? Environmental Decisions Involve Everyone (EDIE)—will help you make a statement among the sea of pesticide warning signs staking out your neighbors backyards. One side of edie’s bright yellow sign proclaims “Pesticide-Free…All Living Creatures Welcome”; the other reads “Environmental awareness begins in your own backyard.” Each recyclable plastic sign is available for $8, including shipping and handling, and a portion of the proceeds is donated to Breast Cancer Research and Citizens for a Better Environment.

CONTACT

EDIE
2614 East Beverly Road
Milwaukee, WI 53211
Tel: (888) 721-4137

—M.D.


SKIN-SATIONAL

The philosophy of Morganics Essential Botanicals is to use natural before artificial, vegetable based before animal, reusable before disposable. With that in mind, the company has developed a full line of skin care products, from gentle scrubs and moisturizers to shampoos and bath salts, good for both you and the Earth. The bio-energetic ingredients in Morganics’ Facial Care System act synergistically to revitalize your skin, slow the effects of aging and provide environmental protection against skin damage for men and women of all ages. Product prices range from $7.95 to $29.95, and gift boxes are also available.

CONTACT

Morganics
Tel: (800) 820-9235

—M.D.


GOES WITHOUT SAYING

As if you needed another reason to buy a box of really good chocolates…Well, okay, here it is: Belgian chocolatier Guylian is putting its confections where its mouth is by dedicating a large public awareness effort, and a large chunk of money, to Project Seahorse, a research team dedicated to conservation of the seahorse worldwide. Besides helping fund new studies on seahorse behavior and ecology, Guylian is printing an alert about the threats to seahorses on every package of Guylian Chocolate Seashells. Each eight-ounce box, sold in retail outlets for around $9, contains marbled white, milk and dark milk chocolates with hazelnut praline filling sculpted in 11 seashell and seahorse shapes.

CONTACT

Guylian USA
Tel: (800) 803-4123

—Jennifer Bogo


PLANTER IMPOSTERS

When it comes time for spring planting, pushing heavy clay pots around the back deck is enough to make you rethink your annual dedication to petunias. Now, thanks to the Eco-Planter, you can still get the look you’re after without slipping a vertebrae, and with saving a few resources to boot. Made of 100-percent recycled plastic (the equivalent of 2,500 square feet of recycled stretch wrap for a 14-inch pot), the lightweight Eco-Planter can easily be loaded into a car, carried into a garden or across that deck. It’s also fade resistant, and unlike terra cotta clay, is unbreakable, even during winter freezes. Prices for the Eco-Planter, available in retail stores in 14-, 18-, and 24-inch sizes, range from $12 to $40.

CONTACT

WorldWise
Tel: (800) WorldWise

—J.B.


JUST FOR STARTERS

Pamper your infant with new products from Earth Friendly Baby, a Vermont-based company offering only natural alternatives for your newest addition. To its natural lavender cleansing bar, earth friendly baby has added a chamomile shampoo and bodywash, calendula daily care cream, and red clover rash care cream. All earth friendly products (ranging from $1 to $8) are hypoallergenic, 100 percent biodegradable, pH balanced and not tested on animals. Ingredients are also completely natural—no artificial coloring, fragrance or synthetic detergents of any kind. An offer for a free starter kit can be found on packages of Stonyfield Farms certified-organic Yo Babyyogurt through June 2000.

CONTACT

Earth Friendly Baby
Tel: (888) WashBaby

—J.B.


BOOKS

BACKYARD BLISS

“The key to the future of the Earth lies in gardening.” So begins Howard Yana-Shapiro and John Harrison’s Gardening for the Future of the Earth (Bantam Books, $19.95). The book is based on the sustainable gardening practices of Seeds of Change, the largest organic seed company in the United States. Advice from experts in the fields of permaculture, biointensive and biodynamic gardening fill the book with useful and practical suggestions for gardeners of all levels and experience. Readers will explore the fundamental implications of the way we garden today. For the young gardener,

Lee Fryer and Leigh Bradford offer A Child’s Organic Garden (Acropolis Books, $9.95). The book tells the story of a grandfather and granddaughter team who use age-old farming techniques to convert their backyard into a healthy organic garden. The authors combine personal anecdotes with helpful information in a way sure to inspire young green thumbs to try gardening naturally. Written so that even young children can understand, the book encourages families to garden together.

—M.D.


FEATHERED FRIENDS

Published on the 100th anniversary of the shooting of the last passenger pigeon, Hope is the Thing With Feathers: A Personal Chronicle of Vanished Birds by Christopher Cokinos (Tarcher/Putnam, $24.95) is a powerful and beautifully written new book. Cokinos tells the story of six species of extinct birds: the Carolina Parakeet, the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker, the Heath Hen, the Passenger Pigeon, the Great Auk and the Labrador Duck, exploring what happened to these birds and perhaps more importantly why. It is both a natural history and a cultural history of how our lives intertwined with these ill-fated creatures. Not only for birders, Cokinos asks complicated questions that extend to what humankind’s role shoul

d be in the natural world.

—M.D.


SHOW ME THE GREEN MONEY

Need funding for environmental projects? The Environmental Grantmaking Foundation’s 2000 Guide is here to help. The eighth edition of the best-selling guide to over 875 independent, community and corporate foundations gives environmental groups around the globe a much-needed financial resource. Environmental projects receive over $500 million from these foundations annually. The guide provides contact information, foundation history and philosophy, financial data, and samples of grants and the application process. It’s available in print and CD-ROM formats, with the online directory accessible by mid-summer 2000.

CONTACT

Resources for Global Sustainability
Tel: (800) 724-1857


FIXING A BROKEN PLANET

With the possible exception of former U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson, only Denis Hayes could have written The Official Earth Day Guide to Planet Repair (Island Press, $11.95). Hayes, who along with Nelson organized the original Earth Day in 1970, celebrates the 30th anniversary of the watershed event with the publication of this new book. The Guide provides practical, well-researched tips on how to live lightly on the earth, from buying one of the new eco-cars to improving the energy efficiency of your home. Just as importantly, Hayes consistently points out the connections between individual actions and global environmental problems. The Official Earth Day Guide to Planet Repair is the perfect how-to book for green living in the 21st century.

—April Reese


TOASTING THE EARTH

In Wine from Sky to Earth: Growing and Appreciating Biodynamic Wine (Acres, U.S.A., $24), French winemaker Nicholas Joly describes how he listens carefully to the rhythms of nature in creating fine wines. Abandoning the heavy chemical dependency of many modern growers, Joly shares the biodynamic methods with which he lovingly tends his own Coulee de Serrant vineyard, focusing on practices that build soil health and nurture the vine. Intended for both winegrowers “who devote themselves to their vines with passion” and wine lovers “so they may better understand the grape.” Those already convinced, but bewildered by the array of sustainably produced choices, may be wise to consult the Friends of the Earth Organic Wine Guide (Thorsonsendbold, $15). Monty Waldin, an independent wine critic, helps decipher how to buy and serve organic wines, describing major grape-growing regions, more than 2,000 wines and the 400 producers behind them. Includes contact information and a universal price guide.

—J.B.


A WORTHY INVESTMENT

In a world where everything keeps speeding up, there never seems enough time for yourself, let alone others. Sometimes, you just have to make it. Invest Yourself: The Catalog of Volunteer Opportunities describes thousands of full and part-time volunteer positions throughout North America and the world—and thousands of reasons to take time out for a truly worthy cause. Organized alphabetically, by region and by interest, there’s simply no excuse for not finding the perfect opportunity. The guide is only $8, the start of a very worthy investment. Published by the Commission on Voluntary Service and Action, PO Box 117, New York, NY 10009, Tel: (718) 638-8487.

—J.B.