Essays

Going Green

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Here in Carpenter Country, we’re a frugal bunch. So when the short one came across GreenScapes, a US government Environmental Protection Agency web site with tips about saving money while helping preserve natural resources, she hit the print button.

At first glance going “green” seemed to add up to a lot of shopping. On top of that, most of the suggestions looked like they’d cost more money than they’d save. For instance, does growing your own veggies or collecting rainwater sound inexpensive–or like something that can be done in an hour?

The short one thought no way…but she was wrong.

Once the rain barrel was set up, Mother Nature filled it on her time. Using roof runoff to wash cars, pets and windows helped reduce water bills. Houseplants liked the free stuff too.

Throwing kitchen and yard waste into a garden plot took less than ten minutes. Plus composting eliminated dragging a trash can to the curb and hauling high priced bags of fertilizer home.

Readying a vegetable garden for planting stole several hours, but provided a lot of laughs. Hopefully, harvesting the crops will turn out to be no more of a hassle than driving to the supermarket. Another positive: Fewer shopping trips could eventually add up to fewer gas stops.

It seems green is mean, which translates into: Great! Wonderful! Marvelous!

Actually “Green is Mean” was the title of an article on how to save money printed in this newsletter in 2004. Today a rewrite would include: Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Rebuy.

And the updated title would read “Green is Even Meaner.”

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