Time for the Green Home You’ve Been Wanting
NEWS– According to a 2012 poll by Harris Interactive, there was a continued decrease in green attitudes and behaviors since 2009. For example, only 61 percent of respondents reported reusing things they own instead of throwing them away or buying new items. Meanwhile, buying food in bulk and taking measures to save money has risen. Despite a decline in green behavior, respondents showed a rise in describing themselves in terms of conservationists, green or environmentalists.
Educating yourself on how your life impacts the environment is a first step toward living a greener life, and the best place to start is in your home. From pest prevention to gardening, you can reduce your impact on the environment and develop a healthier home.
Combat pests naturally
Toxic chemicals, which have long been the standard in pest control, can actually be harmful to your health. The best way to combat pests naturally is to help prevent and reduce issues before they spiral out of control. For instance, does your city make Orkin’s list of the top 50 bed bug cities?
Start by inspecting your home for signs of bed bugs on a regular basis, including around furniture, mattress seams and behind baseboards. Bed bugs can even work their way into electrical outlets. Next, wash any potentially infected linens and fabrics in the hottest water possible to help kill off any unwanted pests.
Monitor energy use
Have you ever wondered how much energy your home actually uses? Smappee smart home energy monitor gives real-time energy readings and the amount you’re spending. Smappee can detect which appliances and gadgets are which simply by monitoring their electrical charge. This can help you identify energy sucks and determine whether to unplug the offending device or switch to a more energy-efficient option. You can also turn appliances off and on with your smartphone or tablet with the help of Smappee’s smart outlet.
To combat energy leaks, use heavy curtains to keep cold out and heat in during winter months. During summer, switch to lightweight curtains or keep the shades up to encourage natural sunlight to warm your home.
You can make many cleaning products using natural ingredients from your home or the supermarket. Lemon juice has long been used to help remove dirt. Add a little table salt to create a scouring solution to scrub down counters and surfaces. Use leftover cooking oil, such as olive oil, and add a few drops of lemon to create a wood polish cleaner that also hydrates your floors as you clean.
Essential oils have become a popular way to do everything from de-stress to cure common ailments such as joint pain and congestion. But they can also be used to combat bacteria and mold. Add a few drops of plant-based peppermint oil in water and vinegar to create your own household cleaner.
Plant an organic garden
Caring for your lawn and garden can be an expensive and toxic task when pesticides and fertilizers are concerned. To fertilize your lawn, create your own mulch and compost with trimmings from your yard and scraps from your kitchen. You can also plant “cover crops,” such as clover or alfalfa, that break down and provide nutrients to your yard.
To combat pests, mix up soaked, minced garlic with vegetable oil and add to water to spray on leaves and stems. Pests will avoid the oil and move on to find another snack. Remember that some insects, such as lady bugs and praying mantis, will take care of garden insect problems.