Nature's Nurses

Eco Consultancy & Contracting ~ Greening Your Space, Inside & Out!


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How Clean is Clean?

April is Earth Month, an expansion on the action-orientated principles of Earth Day, which was conceptualized in 1969.  The basic idea is to protect our environment by being aware and conservative in our use of resources. This can take many forms, from eating healthy through local sources, supporting businesses that promote sustainable practices and realizing the options available to us as consumers. 

 

When I’m cleaning my home, I cringe every time I have to dump a bucketful of chemical filled dirty water down the drain, knowing it could end up in our water system.  Though most of our water gets treated to remove harmful particles before we use it again (our water is a process of recycling ya know), sometimes the water doesn’t make it to the treatment plant.  Sometimes, due to poor city infrastructure, it gets washed back out into our waterways during a heavy rain or seeps into the ground in our communities or overflows into our streets from clogged sewage pipes.

“As consumers we are bombarded with products that may look attractive and claim to be effective in what it does, but they cause harm to our health and that of the planet.  Particles that don’t breakdown, animal testing, harmful ingredients and negative side affects should not be normal for items that we use on our bodies.” The Story of Stuff, Anne Leonard.

Most commercial laundry soap contains harsh ingredients like ammonia, phosphorus and other chemicals that cause allergies, rashes, sinus problems & other unfortunate health issues.  According to the FDA, these detergents & chemical based degreasers leave residue on “cleaned” clothes, which can be absorbed by skin. This can lead to buildup of toxins in our system (bio-accumulation) over many years and doses.


I started making natural products in 2001 while working as apreschool teacher.  As I was cleaning my classroom one day it dawned on me that I was spraying harmful toxins into the air; covering the surfaces we played, eat and slept on with chemicals.  I thought about the bleach- covered toys that the toddlers would put in their mouths when I wasn’t looking and decided to do something about it.

Feeling good shouldn’t be bad for you!

 

My products are one way that I like to contribute to a healthier planet. What are some things you can do? Start something new this Earth Month and make it a life-long habit in saving the planet.


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12 Cosmetic Chemicals You Don’t Want to Touch

One of my biggest pet peeves; the everyday items we use to clean our homes and bodies or to make ourselves more attractive contain ingredients that are insanely toxic to our bodies and the planet!!

12 Cosmetic Chemicals You Don’t Want to Touch

“Beauty ads make a plethora of cosmetics virtually irresistible: this lipstick will accentuate your luscious lips and this moisturizer will keep you eternally young and attractive, but there are all kinds of hidden dangers associated with these cosmetics that are very poorly understood – particularly in the Middle East and North Africa region, where regulations are slightly less robust than elsewhere. The David Suzuki foundation has published a list of the “dirty dozen” chemicals present in cosmetics that are known carcinogens or hormone disruptors, pesticides or reproductive toxins. We’ve adapted our list from there in order to spread the all-important message that women especially need to read labels to ensure that the products they use contain no invisible dangers.” Article borrowed from Green Prophet.

For eco friendly living check out these links

Cosmetic equipment

Cosmetic equipment (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


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Its the little things in life…

I was browsing around on Etsy, looking at all of the wonderful shops and came across this one that deals in succulent plants. I spent a good half hour going through each photo, ooohing and ahhing over each of these beautiful wonders.

The shop sells these sedum as wedding centerpieces and wreaths which are great gift and party ideas, but I’ve used them mostly as indoor houseplants (really, even the least of the green thumbs out there would be able to maintain these) and even better as coverings for green roofs.

150 succulent CUTTINGS Wedding Favors Vertical by Succulentsplus.

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“A green roof or living roof is a roof of a building that is partially or completely covered with vegetation and a growing medium, planted over a waterproofing membrane. It may also include additional layers such as a root barrier and drainage and irrigation systems. Container gardens on roofs, where plants are maintained in pots, are not generally considered to be true green roofs, although this is debated. Rooftop ponds are another form of green roofs which are used to treat greywater.

Green roofs serve several purposes for a building, such as absorbing rainwater, providing insulation, creating a habitat for wildlife, and helping to lower urban air temperatures and mitigate the heat island effect. There are two types of green roofs: intensive roofs, which are thicker and can support a wider variety of plants but are heavier and require more maintenance, and extensive roofs, which are covered in a light layer of vegetation and are lighter than an intensive green roof.”  Taken from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_roof, Modified February 14, 2013 6:44:28 AM

Sedum are the succulents of choice because they are low maintenance, drought tolerant, can withstand fluctuating temperatures and are resistant to many common plant pests.

Interested in having a green roof on your property? Contact Us.

Sisters for Sustainability: Michelle Kaufmann’s Green Prefab for Nuns in Denver : TreeHugger

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As a part of their penance, the Sisters of St. Francis live “with gentle courtesy toward all creation”. The Franciscan Sisters’ have a strong commitment to conserve and sustain resources and therefore built a team to help them with their project that reflected their values.

via: Sisters for Sustainability: Michelle Kaufmann’s Green Prefab for Nuns in Denver : TreeHugger.

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Why Wetlands

English: Man Sands Wetlands. Looking west from...

Wetlands are the link between the land & the water. They are transition zones where the flow of water, the cycling of nutrients and the energy of the sun meet to produce a unique ecosystem characterized by hydrology, soils and vegetation-making these areas very important features of a watershed.

Often called “nurseries of life”, wetlands provide habitat for thousands of species of aquatic and terrestrial plants & animals.

Wetland functions include water quality improvement, floodwater storage, fish & wildlife habitat, aesthetics & biological productivity.

Although wetlands are best known for being home to water lilies, turtles, frogs, snakes, alligators, and crocodiles, they also provide important habitat for waterfowl, fish and mammals.

Migrating birds use wetlands to rest and feed during their cross-continental journeys and as nesting sites when they are home..

As a result, wetland loss has a serious impact on these species. Habitat degradation since the 1970’s has been the leading cause of species extinction.

Destroying or degrading wetlands can lead to serious consequences, such as increased flooding, extinction of species, and decline in water quality.

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RT @reutersscience: Scientists warn EPA

RT @reutersscience: Scientists warn EPA on Monsanto corn rootworm http://t.co/5C7amexN

Green Building- So What’s It Going to Cost Me?

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United States Green Building Council

 So What’s It Going to Cost Me?

http://dld.bz/TAb3

A great article with insight on the benefits of investing in your green future.

The costs may seem like much at first but the payoffs are worth it!

RT @cleanerusa

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