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Grass-to-Gardens Photo Journey

In 2005 Sustainable Village moved and became care-taker for this grass-covered backyard.

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Grass-to-Garden

A European innovation during the 16th Century, lawns became popular and sustainable in that rainy, moist climate. Unfortunately however, they also became popular in warmer and drier places like North America. The early lawn mowers, sheep, kept the lawns cropped short and fertilized while saving the shepherd’s time. Modern lawn mowers produce 11 times more pollution per hour than a modern car, use1.2 billion gallons of gasoline per year, and emit 41 billion pounds of CO2 per year in the USA alone. A mower used for one hour has a carbon footprint equal to a 100 mile journey by car, a leaf blower's footprint for 30 minutes equals a 700 mile trip.* Even just the filling of lawn mowers with gas has horrible consequences: spilling an estimated 17 million gallons of gas each year. (The Exxon Valdez oil spill was less than 11 million gallons.)*

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Food Security and Climate Change

Not since the dinosaur era 65 million years ago has the world experienced this degree of extinctions - 1000 times faster than normal and we've already lost about 90% of large predator fish, 75% of marine fisheries, half of all corals, wetlands, and tropical forests. Each year, desertification claims an area the size of Nebraska while the US loses 100,000 acres of wetlands and 6,000 acres of open space threatening a third of all the plant and animal species.*

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Drier Soil = Hotter Air

Since the Industrial Revolution, the world's climate has increased about 2 degrees and countries all over the world now frequently report record-breaking high temperatures and more frequent heatwaves that last longer. In the UK, Dr. Eunice Lo, Bristol University attribute 2000 deaths a year to these higher temperatures. According to the World Health Organization, between 1998 and 2017, 166,000 people around the world died because of heatwaves, 6.2 million were devastated by wildfires, and 1.5 billion by droughts. Crop failures, large scale evacuations, heatstrokes, melting roads, buckling rail lines, and huge economic losses add to this list of disasters.

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Vacation-Watering Houseplants

As the days of summer begin to wind down and the last chances to travel shrink before another school year starts, you may start to wonder how to best keep your houseplants alive while you're on the road. You can ask a neighbor or friend to do this while you're gone but you may not feel confident in their watering skills. You may not know them well enough to give them a key to your home. Blumat houseplant watering products give you personal control.

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Nature as Best Friend

Technology brings greater convenience, comfort, capacity, and access to both necessities and frivolous luxuries. Technology also tends to isolate and alienate us from the natural world. In our narrow pursuits of fame, fortune, pleasure, and power; we too easily miss the sun glancing off a colorful flower, the new spring shoots sprouting in the back yard or along the sidewalk, the shimmering leaves glowing in a light rain. Seduced by the constant lure of our cell phones, apps, social media messages, and journalistic sensationalism; we too easily miss the wonders of nature surrounding us.

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The Counterculture Had it Right

Our business' founding inspirations sparked during the cultural maelstrom of the 1960's. We questioned the status quo, the Vietnam war, racial injustice, and gender inequality. We rejected materialistic consumerism, began experiencing nature more directly, looked for ways of creating more just and equitable societies.

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Regenerative Agriculture

The agricultural lobby became the most powerful lobby in the U.S. Much like the old Tobacco and the current coal lobbys hides and distorts many of the statistics.This vast system of factory farming now produces at least 1/3 of all human caused greenhouse gases. It contaminates our air and water, damages our soil, destroys wildlife habitats, and escalates climate change. Partly because of very little regulation, we can blame our agricultural system for generating as much emissions as 143 million cars annually.

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The Regenerative Society - We Won’t Back Down

I always felt like an outsider. Or at best, part of a tiny group of like minded folks trying to dispel those persistent illusions that hem us all in; the barriers, visible and invisible, erected by history, family, society (and, complicitly, ourselves) that curtail Life’s fullest unfolding.

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Soil Moisture Meters

What is the importance of Soil Moisture and when to use which kind of moisture meter? The amount of moisture or soil water is important to know because:

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Bonsai Watering

Reports show that up to 75% of new Bonsai trees die during their first month in a new home. Because they usually have very little planting mix, they easily dry out too much without frequent watering. Too much water, however, can also create big problems. Our new Blumat Bonsai kits solve both these problems while saving you huge amounts of both time and anxiety.

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Air Conditioning Heat Load

The labor, water, and energy savings from using Blumat systems quickly becomes obvious. As the research in this article shows, however, benefits extend far beyond the obvious. For every gallon of water a Blumat system saves, the air conditioning heat load reduces by over 8000 BTU’s which can result in huge cost savings.

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Guide to Nutrients & Blumat Systems

Can nutrients be used with Blumat Systems? The answer to this question is rich with subtleties and nuance, which is why it needs to be addressed with an article as opposed to a yes/no. The short answer is generally yes, with some caveats.

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Sustainable Development Goals

Too often, we see big projects like the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and feel glad that some big organizations work on these goals... but we don't see much we can do ourselves. Our individual actions, however, may represent the best first step toward achieving these objectives. The immense challenges we face were caused by the accumulation of individual, group, business, and political choices. Only a concerted effort by all of us has hope of success. On this page, we analyze our own resources and capacities for helping in these efforts.

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Slow Water

Almost everyone knows that if plants don't get enough water they die. Most people also know that too much water can also kill plants. Most people don't know though that how fast plants get water is also an important factor.

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