The Best Push Reel Mowers

Modern reel mowers are quite efficient at cutting grass using nothing but your own push power. Gas-powered mowers actually produce a stunning amount of air pollution considering their small size. Plus, spilled gasoline is a nasty toxin that has no place in your yard. Plus, both you and your neighbors will appreciate the lack of engine noise on a quiet …

Botanikka Heirloom Seeds

Botanikka sells very affordable heirloom vegetable seeds. They come in packs with quaint, retro images on them. We planted some of the seeds, and sure enough, we now have heirloom varieties of vegetables growing all over the place. See more info on heirloom seeds here. The French Cuisine mix, for example, contains ten packs of unusual, French-themed vegetables and herbs, …

Biopavers

We mentioned previously that using porous pavers is an effective alternative to paving with concrete. They make patios and driveways less erosion-prone and they do not get as hot as hard-surfaced pavement. Now a company called Biopaver is trying to take things a step further by introducing a new type of paver designed to catch storm water run-off but also …

Upside-Down Tomato, Flower and Vegetable Planter

An interesting idea. This planter can used to tomatoes, other vegetables or even flowers from a small area. Hang on decks, patios, porches, balconies, or even from a tree. The manufacturer claims feeding and watering is easy: you pour water or nutrients into the top of the funnel. Web Site: Clean Air Gardening ($19.95)

Raised Beds: Efficient

The “Raised Beds” method of gardening is certainly metaefficient, and should be included in our guide here. Raised beds are widely acknowledged as the method to obtain the greatest yields of vegetables per alloted space. You can read about the benefits here: Aaron’s Home & Garden weblog (Aaron is an expert in Rainwater Harvesting). Website: Aaron’s Home & Garden The …

Clumping Bamboos: The Ones To Grow

Many people are reluctant to plant bamboo because they are afraid it will spread like wildfire and have the entire neighborhood up in arms against them. But there’s a simple solution to this problem — plant the right kind of bamboo — the “clumping” kind. The invasive kind is the “running” bamboo which probably should never touch foot in your …

Metaefficient Fertilizer: TerraCycle

TerraCycle is a product that could be called completely Metaefficient. It is a liquid fertilizer produced through vermicomposting, or feeding organic waste to red worms. The worms’ excrement is a nutrient rich compost that can be mixed to produce liquid organic fertilizer. The TerraCycle bottles are recycled soda bottled collected by students in elementary schools, and the trigger sprays are …

Lead-Free Garden Hoses

Some garden hoses leach lead and other chemicals into the water. The problem is that they are made of PVC, which uses lead as a stabilizer. Consumer Reports tested 16 brands of garden hose sold at national chains and on the internet. In some hoses they measured 10 to 100 times more lead than the EPA considers safe coming out …

Self-Contained Watering System

3658069941_58e09662a1

The Oasis Automatic Plant Watering System by Claber is a programmable system that distributes up to 6 gallons of water to as many as 20 plants. It is a completely independent system, needing no connection to a tap or electrical main. It runs on one 9V battery. Available from: Amazon ($89.99)

Fungi Perfecti: Growing Useful Mushrooms

Fungi Perfecti is the web site of Paul Stamets, author of “Growing Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms“. Stamets has a long history of discovering and cultivating edible and medicinal mushrooms. He researches useful aspects of fungi such as their antiviral properties and their potential for “mycoremediation” (restoring polluted or damaged habitats with fungi). Through the Fungi Perfecti web site you can …