Learn how to encourage good pollinators when growing plants under row covers to keep out the bad bugs.
Tips for limiting your exposure to pollen to help manage allergy symptoms.
While there are plenty of great reasons to grow a food garden, we recently polled readers to find out their primary motivation for gardening. Read their interesting results, plus tell us more about your gardening philosophy.
A cold winter and late-season snow in some parts of the U.S. could mean a rough spring allergy season.
Create a pollinator-friendly garden to attract hummingbirds, bees, bats and other animals.
New varieties of herbs for pollinators.
Self-pollinating apple trees allow homeowners with little space to reap the benefits of this fresh, nutritious fruit. While typical apple breeds require planting at least two trees in the same space so they can pollinate each other, self-fertile trees can produce fruit without another tree around.
The first of 12 posts, seed saving begins with an introduction to the stories behind seeds and why they are so important. From preserving our shared botanical heritage to protecting a diverse and decentralized food supply, the story of seed is as varied as the people who plant them.
Readers vote on whether they think making beer, mustard or pickles sounds like the most fun, plus which seems easiest.
Learn why systemic neonicotinoid pesticides widely used to grow corn are one of the reasons so many honeybees and other pollinators are dying.
How to acquire bat guano.
Native bees are a necessary component of maintaining native habitats. Their role is increasingly important as honeybee populations struggle with Colony Collapse Disorder. Learn what you can do to support your local pollinators this spring.
Bees do not live on honey alone. Pollen provides honeybees with necessary protein.
The Living Seed Company is working to preserve genetic diversity in our food chain, through the distribution and growing of open pollinated seeds and preserving the ancient art of seed saving.
A pragmatic approach to eliminating male sterility from a home garden. Includes a diagram and photos about what to look for.
Learn how to breed corn in your own corn nursery, plus learn how to properly hand-pollinate corn plants.
A recent poll asked you what percentage of people living in the U.S. you would guess grow food gardens. Most respondents underestimated the actual numbers of households with home gardens, a growing trend.
The flowers weren't just there to be pretty. They provided a long blooming source of forage for our bees and the native pollinators.
In more shocking news about the honey on U.S. store shelves, a Food Safety News study analyzes more than 60 jars of honey and finds that nearly all of them have been ultra-filtered to disguise their potentially tainted and toxic origins.
Pollution isn't just hurting our environment. It is a bigger cause of death in Southern California than motorized vehicles!
Are you air aware? Learn how air quality affects your health during Air Quality Awareness Week.
When a fire destroyed their home and office near San Luis Obispo, Ken Haggard and Polly Cooper seized the opportunity to build the off-the-grid straw bale home of their dreams. Their comfortable compound now houses two other families as well.
Using oil seed radishes to add organic matter to the ground and attracting native pollinators with a nest site. Harvesting sweet potato seeds if we're lucky and admiring the parasitic wasp's ability to lay white egg sacs into the body of a horn worm
Environmental journalist Simran Sethi goes through the process of rejuvenating her hardwood floors, and describes how to avoid harmful ingredients in cleaning products, such as volatile organic compounds, in the process.
A recent Gallop poll concludes there is a big significance difference betwen what scientists and the general public know about climate change. This posting discusses two basic facts about climate change that can't be refuted.
Sixty-one percent of Americans say they understand our nation's energy issues, but more than half have never heard the term "smart grid." We have a lot to talk about.
Studies show air pollution in China can reduce a life span by up to 5.5 years.
United Nations Climate Week invokes memories of first Earth Day and how far we have yet to go to clean up our environment.
This Friday, Beijing will show off its green improvements when the Olympics begin.
Tips on what to do with all the fallen leaves this autumn.
The Gulf of Mexico oil spill has been in the news constantly for the past two months, and all the new developments can be a bit overwhelming. Here's a comprehensive update to help you keep everything straight.
Tips on how to be smart about salt this winter and protect water quality.
Ben Cartwright of Lawrence, Kan., is working on a book project about the city of Tianjin, China, where he worked and lived for several months, and he needs your help.
May is American Wetlands Month. Find out the many environmental benefits of wetlands and find out how you can help protect them!
Natural cleanup methods for the Gulf of Mexico oil leak, such as using hair and hay to absorb oil on the water surface, are beginning to spark interest in the United States.
Tips on how to protect water quality with phosphate-free cleaning projects during spring cleaning.
Tips on how to calculate your nitrogen footprint.
Tips on how to improve lakeshore habitat conditions by reducing nutrient pollution.
Tips on how saving energy this fall and winter can help reduce nutrient pollution in water bodies.
Tips on how to help save fuel and money while driving.
This post outlines the basics of garden planning to save seeds from cucumbers, melons, squash and gourds.
A birdbath in the garden does much more than a birdfeeder. Attract birds to the garden with water, and they will help with pest control, soil aeration, and much more as they get the water they need for drinking and grooming. Wasps love a drink too.
By the 4th of July, there's a palpable shift in the feel of the beekeeping season. New beekeepers wish for more guidance, and may even be wondering why they started this project! Here's a little reassurance that you are not alone in your endeavor.
It helps us feel better to know "why" things happen, but we don't always get to know that answer...
Roses are easy to grow successfully if you follow a few guidelines: provide good air circulation around the canes and keep the plants clean and not too damp. Roses come in many forms, including bush or shrub, climbing, and miniature.
This blog post started life as an article in The Natural Farmer,published by the Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA). It could be said to herald the birth of that entity we have come to call The Cynical Optimist.
A quick essay regarding the "size" question of a top bar hive, from the bee's point of view - where it's all about the "volume"!
Tips on how to prevent soil compaction on your lawn and reduce water pollution!
World Car Free Day is an annual international event to raise awareness about alternative transportation. Every Sept. 22, cities and towns around the globe recognize the negative impacts of car pollution and encourage walking or biking as ways to save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
An explosion at a British Petroleum oil rig has caused a massive and growing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico just off the Lousiana coast. Here is an account of where the spill stands at the moment.
This summer, the Gulf of Mexico's dead zone is estimated to be the largest yet since records began back in 1985.
Tips on how to dispose of pet waste properly for National Dog Day!
Hundreds of Gulf Coast oil spill workers have fallen ill with flu-like symptoms related to oil exposure. News reports claim that BP is not allowing workers to wear respirators, despite the potential long-term respiratory and neurological consequences workers could face.
In this video, learn how the production and consumption of stuff affects the environment and community health.
Tips on how to protect yourself form harmful algal blooms.
A new initiative has launched in response to heavy metal pollution in Armenia for environmental lab equipment that will monitor health risks in mining communities throughout the country.
Tips on how to save water at home and protect water quality during National Water Quality Month.
Tips on how to protect naturally-beneficial estuaries.
Tips on how to properly maintain your home's septic system.
Tips on how green roofs can benefit your wallet and the environment!
June is National Rivers Month! Help protect your local waterways with these simple tips.
Tips for saving energy at home while trying to stay cool.
Your drinking water might not be as spring fresh as you'd like to think.
Tiny plastic beads in cosmetics are found in the Great Lakes, putting fish and human health at risk.
People living near massive livestock operations may be at risk from the pollution they generate--which is higher in some cases than the nation's most polluted cities.
Over the past 15 years the noise level in cities has increased sixfold; urban noise doubles every eight to ten years. Even in the country, we can't escape the sound of airplanes and engines. What can you do?
The bad news? Coal-fired power plants are our biggest source of industrial pollution. The good news? Solar grew by 67 percent last year, making it our fastest-growing energy sector.
I am especially concerned with the electricity hogs that keep us burning coal.