Everyday Is Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day!                  618482main_earth1600_800-600

The weather is close to perfect, and it is a fabulous time of the year.  Get outside and enjoy our magnificent planet.

Our earth’s water, air, birds, bees and butterflies need better care, and extreme weather has become the norm.  I wish our earth was healthier, and hopefully on this special day we can make a new commitment to do more to help her.

Six easy things you can do to love our earth:

1. Everyday appreciate our beautiful earth.

2. Recycle, recycle, and recycle some more, and remember to recycle those plastic bags–Many stores collect them.  We should recycle 74 % of our trash according to the EPA.

3. Ask when you purchase plants if they have been treated with neonicotinoids (imidacloprid, clothianidin, thiamethoxam, acetamiprid, dinotefuran) and never apply these chemicals to your yard. Some bird seed is also treated with these poisons-ASK and read labels!

4. Add native trees and plants to your landscape.  http://findnativeplants.com/

5. Purchase quality products, and products that can be reused.  Also, look for products made from recycled materials.  If the entire world lived like the average American, we’d need 5 planets to provide enough resources.

6. Leave your car at home one day a week, and turn off lights when not in use.

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Big Question: Do Plants Contain Neonicotinoids?

Bees love bee balm and Anise Hysopp
Bees love bee balm and Anise Hysopp

I am a firm believer in Education, and thank the media for making an issue of the loss of our bees.  News today that two major garden stores/growers, Bachmans and Gertens, in the Twin Cities will not use neonicotinoids on their own plants this year.  They are also educating their sales force on neonicotinoids.  This does not mean all their plants will be neonicotinoids free, because some of their suppliers might still be users.  As you shop for garden plants this year, you still need to ask, OR just purchase local native plants.  http://findnativeplants.com/  Read the full story:  http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/homegarden/250843241.html

“Neonicotinoids are a class of neuro-active insecticides chemically similar to nicotine. In March 2013, the American Bird Conservancy published a review of 200 studies on neonicotinoids including industry research obtained through the US Freedom of Information Act, calling for a ban on neonicotinoid use as seed treatments because of their toxicity to birds, aquatic invertebrates, and other wildlife. The use of some members of this class has been restricted in some countries due to some evidence of a connection to honey-bee colony collapse disorder.” From Wikopedia

Cone flowers: Easy to grow, and loved by bees!
Cone flowers: Easy to grow, and loved by bees!