This is the home of the Sensible Gardener, so we’re beyond Why go green. Sensible as in “perceptible by both the senses and the mind”. So we want to find and promote intelligent, practical green ideas and solutions for the garden.
The basis of a good relationship
What is it? Respect, of course. You need to have respect for nature to have a good relationship with her. And what will a good, sound relationship with nature bring you? Peace of mind and a solid grounding with the world all around. You think I’m exaggerating? Try it for a few months. Why go green? First and foremost, for yourself.
Before we ask the question “Why go green?”, we need to define what we mean by “green”. Green can mean a number of things, but mainly it means:
- that has been proven to be non-threatening to the ecosystems and those creatures they support,
- that is biodegradable (that can be decayed and reused by nature) and
- that is sustainable (that can be used on a continual basis with little or no negative effects on the environment).
Objects can be or not be green, so can activities.
- Plastic, for instance, is a man made substance that cannot be naturally “recycled” by the environment. Plastic objects are simply broken down into smaller and smaller pieces. There is not one single beach on earth that is not filled with pieces of plastic junk ranging in size from a few feet to a few microns. This garbage that virtually never goes away ends up in the bodies of fish, birds, even humans. That in itself, can help a lot of people answer the question “Why go green?”
- There are also things that were created by nature and that can pose environmental problems. Oil and coal, for example. When they sit underground they poses no problems. When extract them and burn them though, they do pose serious problems. Toxic substances are released into the air as well as gases that contribute to global warming. Minerals were also created by nature. Once again, their extraction and use can create serious problems. abandons mines in South Africa are just another example in a long list of environmental threats. Hundreds and hundreds of old mines are filling up with water and turning into pools of toxic water. This water then seeps out and contaminates surrounding rivers and water holes, threatening animal as well as human lives.
What’s not green
Thousands and thousands of oil wells and mines and even more factories are active around the clock and around the globe. Fossil fuels are used to produce toxic, non biodegradable products. This is happening everyday at a scale that is almost impossible to imagine.
It is almost impossible not to see all this, but we would rather keep our eyes closed. When you do open your eyes and try to look beyond the tip of your nose. you realize it just can’t go on. We can’t keep producing toxic, non biodegradable substances by the millions of gallons and by the billions of tons.
Big industry is telling us that we CANNOT live without all this. Why go green? Things are perfect as they are. I’d like to see them tell us how we CAN live with all this. How we can go on filling up the world with toxic, non biodegradable objects and substances without eventually ending up in a huge toxic dump? Remember, biodegradable means nature can break it down and use it to feed the cycle of life. Non biodegradable means it just sits there as trash for thousands of years. Humans have been producing these substances for a few decades, and with every new decade we are producing more and more. Can you imagine how much will have accumulated a hundred years from now?
In our sees, in our earth, in our blood
Plastic is everywhere today. Minute particles of the stuff are mixed in with almost everything, from water to sand and soil. It’s even in our own blood stream. Most of us have heard about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, but few have actually seen it. You don’t have to go so far to see how much plastic litter has become a worldwide problem.
Why go green? You would know if you were a pelican with a stomach full of bits and pieces of plastic. Or a turtle trying to find a good spot to lay your eggs on a beach full of trash that keeps accumulating but never goes away.
The plastic vortex
There are millions of tons of plastic and mixed rubbish floating in what is called the plastic vortex in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. To know more about this, please visit the site of the Project Kaisei.
Can this go on?
We, Humans, are actually pouring sand on the workings of the very system that created us. For decades we have been witness to the death of thousands of species. How is it possible that we cannot see that we are also somewhere on that list. Let’s use our heads to change the current course of history and save what can still be saved.
What can I do about it, you ask. I say start by “cleaning up your garden”. In other words, do your own little thing in your own little space. You probably won’t be able to be 100% green, but 80% green or 50% green can make a huge difference. Eventually, who knows, we may be able to be 100% green. Find and use green solutions in your home and in your yard. Your neighbors will see you, some will ask questions and be tempted to do the same. When more and more people use organic fertilizers and biodegradable products, greener factories will open while chemical plants will close down.
So paint your corner of the world a little greener. Maybe you’ll be part of a wave that will make the whole world greener. Do it in your yard, do it in your house and do it on your plate too. By buying Eco-friendly stuff for your home and by eating organic products, you are supporting Eco-responsible manufacturers and organic farmers, and they are certainly part of the wave (be aware of green washers though—they are everywhere nowadays).
For general information, visit our green landscaping page.