Ecoist Bags

Ecoist makes bags and totes by hand with recycled materials used to make candy wrappers, food packages, and soft drink labels. This excess materials often ends up as waste in landfills. For each bag sold they plant a tree. Each bag is unique, with patterns and colors that vary widely, taking each artist 2-5 days to produce. Marisa Rey is …

Agalia: Plant-Based Paints

Agalia Paints are plant-based paints produced by the Germany company Beeck’sche Farbwerke. All Agalia products are 100% natural. They are made with unique combinations of plant oil and minerals. Here is a full list of ingredients (PDF file) used in their paints. They also produce wood finishes called Aquasol. The finishes are an alternative to solvent-based products. These natural oil …

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 …

Self-Contained Watering System

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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)

Rhodiola Rosea: Hypereffective Adaptogen

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Golden Root or Rhodiola Rosea is a plant native to mountainous regions of Asia, Eastern Europe, and the Arctic. It has been used throughout history in those areas to combat fatigue and restore energy. Recently it has been getting worldwide attention due to its effectiveness as a “adaptogen”. Explaining the effects of the adaptogens is difficult, since each one affects …

Another Efficient Tea: Honeybush

Honeybush is another excellent tea from Africa, like Rooibos, it is caffine-free and low in tannins. The taste is sweet with notes of apricot. It contains a high amounts of vitamin C, potassium, calcium and magnesium. It is traditionally used to treat coughs. This can be explained in part, by its content of pinitol, a modified sugar (a methyl group …

Stronger Bioplastic Developed: Kenaf + Polylactic Acid (PLA)

A stronger bioplastic has been created by NEC. It was achieved by reinforcing polylactic acid with kenaf fiber. Kenaf is an extremely fast growing plant which absorbs more CO2 than other other crop. The bioplastic would be beneficial to the ecosystem during its manufacture and when it is discarded and biodegrades. The superior stength and heat resistance of this bioplastic …

Best All-Round Indoor Plants

Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum “Mauna Loa”) Peace Lily removes benzene, xylene and toluene found in nail polish, paints, solvents, and adhesives as well as trichloroethylene (TCE). TCE is a commercial product found in a wide variety of industrial uses such as metal degreasing and dry cleaning. It is also found in printing inks, paints, lacquers, varnishes and adhesives. Wash the leaves …

Plants Good For Formaldehyde Removal

Dwarf Date Palm (Phoenix Roebelenii) Boston Fern (Nephrolepis Exaltata ‘Bostoniensis’) Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum) Philodendron Selloum