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2 weeks ago

For Christmas, give these books to the gardener/reader in your life - Press Herald

With the arrival of winter in Maine, gardening moves inside and into the realm of the imagination. Gardeners exchange rakes and hoes for books, and turn from cultivating gardens to cultivating their (horticultural) minds. Its merely a coincidence that many of us enjoy receiving books as gifts.

Here are some of the gardening books Ive read this year and can recommend.

The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate Discoveries from a Secret World. By Peter Wohlleben. Greystone Books, 272 pages. $24.99.

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3 months ago

Outdoor gardening will be over soon. It's time to talk about cleanup and indoor growing - Alaska Dispatch News

Agggh. This is such a difficult time for an Alaska garden writernot to mention an Alaska gardener.

We are at the end of the season and it is just too darn difficult to predict just when the real end of it is here. And when you write a column several days in advance, that makes it even tougher. So, I have to go to the Garden Writers Rule Book.

That book says there are two safe, but important topics. The first is fall cleanup and the second is the need for winter lights. I have written every year about both. That won't stop me from doing so again.

First, the cleanup. My goals are to try to make things easier next spring, prevent any equipment from getting damaged and, of c

5 months ago

Giving seniors a helping hand in home repairs - The Charlottesville Newsplex

ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (NEWSPLEX) -- Two organizations teamed up on Friday to do a bit of heavy labor, for free.



The Albemarle Housing Improvement Project and the Senior Care company, Commonwealth Assisted Living, are helping out seniors who can't afford to fix up their aging homes.



Many seniors are living on fixed incomes, that means even when it comes to small repairs, the price can do a lot of damage.



On Friday, the two groups worked on a home in Albemarle County owned by a 62-year-old senior.



The homeowner says the maintenance around her home has started to pile up.



AHIP's Corbin Breaud says it's even become dangerous.



"The deck was rotting out," said Breaud. "A lot of the structural members were falling down, it was really unsafe to walk up and down for the family that lives here."



Breaud's crew plans to turn that around by replacing sidings, fixing the roof and the porch.



According to AHIP, there is a large need for repairs on senior homes. More than 260 seniors are waiting for repairs in the Charlottesville regional area.



"We have a waiting list they get on and then we prioritize them based on if there are elderly folks in the house," said Breaud. "If there are handicap people living there, we just triage the problems as best we can."



AHIP couldn't do the free repairs alone. Volunteers like Erika Gennari from Commonwealth Assisted Living also got down and dirty.



"We want to make sure they are safe and comfortable and in a good place," said Gennari. "Even if that means not with us and in their own home."



She said there was something even more special about helping out the home owner on Friday that allows a good deed to go along way.



"In order for us to help seniors," said Gennari. "We're helping one caregiver, so she can continue to do her job."



The home will also get a few other repairs including electrical work and energy efficient upgrades, in time for the summer heat.



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8 months ago

Katz praises jump in Sandy home repairs - Queens Chronicle

Borough President Melinda Katz praised the progress the citys Sandy recovery program has made in recent months, saying that 60 percent, or 2,389 out of the 3,962 Queens homeowners in the Build it Back pipeline, have been reimbursed for work they did themselves or have seen construction start.

Construction has now started on 655 homes in Queens, according to numbers provided by Katzs office, 24 percent of the 2,717 borough homeowners who opted to have work done on their homes. That number is up from the 433 who saw work start on their homes as of last May.

The borough president credited much of the increase to the City Council passing the Citywide Flood Resilience Text Amendment, which cut red tape that was blocking work on homes in the recovery system, and the Hurricane Relief Task Force a group of community leaders in Sandy-affected neighborhoods that meets with Katz and representatives of city agencies once a month to discuss issues surrounding storm recovery.

A considerable amount of progress has taken place since Superstorm Sandy, the bulk of which since 2014 under the de Blasio administration, Katz said in a statement. Much work still remains, however, and the Task Force continues to work together in close coordination with full community input.

Dan Mundy Jr., a leader in the Broad Channel community and a member of the task force, praised Katzs work to help those hit by the storm.

Melinda Katz has been, in my view, the single most influential figure to help make the Build it Back program better, Mundy said in an interview.

The community activist explained that in the beginning of Build it Back, while Mayor Bloomberg was still in office, construction lagged and it took months to process storm victims paperwork.

With the task force, Mundy and others can bring their gripes directly to the city agencies and work on a solution.

Now, there are homes going up, homes are being rebuilt, he said. Is it perfect? Absolutely not. But now we have a method to fix it.

Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park) in a brief interview said there is a different figure that has to be looked at.

What about the people who are still not in their homes and who are still waiting for help, Ulrich said.

10 months ago

High Energy Gardening Means Nuking Plants - Hackaday

We live in a world transformed byour ability to manipulate the nucleus of atoms. Nuclear power plants provide abundant energy without polluting the air, yet on the other hand thousands of nuclear warheads sit in multiple countries ready to annihilate everything, even if its not on purpose. There are an uncountable number of other ways that humanitys dive into nuclear chemistry has impacted the lives of people across the world, from medical imaging equipment to smoke detectors and even, surprisingly, to some of the food that we eat.

After World War 2, there was a push to find peaceful uses for atomic energy. After all, dropping two nuclear weapons on a civilian population isnt great PR