Urban Ecologist

housing | 1 Dec

Sustainable Housing

Dan Phillips, founder of The Phoenix Commotion, a construction company that builds affordable homes with recycled materials, has some lessons to share about consumerism and sustainability.

His philosophies about waste in home construction can be applied to waste in home landscaping. Please watch this video of him speaking and be prepared to laugh and think.

car-free | 6 Nov

Car-Free and Counting

It’s November 6 today. The sun is shining; its rays beaming like polished silver spokes. Life has been great for us car-free freaks in San Jose ever since we broke the car habit back in March. We’re fit. We’re saving money. We’re polluting the earth a little bit less. Read the rest of this entry »

gardening | 31 Oct

Creepy Crawly Compost

My compost bin is crawling with life. When I opened the lid this morning the mound of compost was moving and wriggling with tons of fuzzy, brown larva or what most people would call maggots. My first reaction should have been disgust, but instead I was fascinated. What were these creatures? Where did they come from? Were they beneficial or bad news? Read the rest of this entry »

gardening | 2 Oct

How to Make a Newspaper Pot

Now that the summer crops are nearly spent, it’s time to start planning for the winter. I recently learned a quick and easy way to make containers to hold my seedlings. Pots made from newspaper are great. They cost nothing to make, and when it’s time to transfer the young potted plants to the ground, I can literally plant the whole pot! Read the rest of this entry »