Going Green Gal

Gardening & Green Tips for Sustainable Living

Rebecca’s Monthly Gardening Tips

A hopefully helpful list of what to do in your garden this month – tried and true tips from the experts.

Learn about what you can Plant and Grow »

Garden Tips for February

Prune hydrangeas by cutting off old, brittle canes.  Leave young canes with flower buds attached for this year’s growth. Prune fuchsias towards the end of the month. Remove any frost damage as well as some of last summer’s growth; leave at least two or three healthy leaf buds on each branch. Prune citrus tree branches that touch the ground, fences or other structures. Thin trees in order to let good air circulation penetrate the entire canopy. Trim out crossing branches and any that appear dead. In order to control aphids, apply Tanglefoot on the trunk to keep ants out. If scale has been a problem, spray with Volk oil which will suffocate them. Yellowing leaves are normal this time of year, so wait until the weather warms up to see if they “green-up”. If not, not you may need to apply a nitrogen-based fertilizer. Apply dormant spray to deciduous trees and shrubs if aphids, scale or whiteflies have been an issue in the past. Apply tri-basic copper sulfate or lime sulfur to your peach trees if peach leaf curl has been a problem. For the Master Gardeners’ Fruit Tree and Vine Care Calendar, go to: www.mastergardeners.org/picks/treecalendar.pdf. Clean up fallen leaves and debris, and add them to your compost pile if they are not diseased. For our complete list of February’s Gardening Tips, click on: ...

Rebecca in the Mercury News

Sustainability We Can Live With

Quick Actions You Can Do Today to Simplify Your Life

You want to live a simpler life, I know. That’s why you’re here, right? To create a life of simplicity, contentment and optimism. But can I tell you something? Your life will not change, you will not be able to create that life you want unless you take action. Take action. And take it today. I want to make it easier for you to take action and move ahead on your journey to a simpler life. So all you have to do is set aside some time – anywhere between 10 minutes and an hour to tackle one of the 21 simple actions below. Just one is enough. More is better, but one is enough to start living a simpler life today. You just have to take action. Action #1: Perform a Clutter Bust (10-45 minutes) This is hands-down the best way to tidy and declutter a space in a short period of time. You can apply it to just one room at a time (strongly recommended), or if you’re feeling ambitious or particularly over-run with clutter – tackle all the main areas of the home. Whatever you choose – speed is the key here. How to clutter-bust your home: Grab an empty laundry basket. Choose a room to begin. Moving quickly – pick up each and every item in that room that does not belong, or is out of place. Place them in the laundry basket. Every single thing. Once full, empty the contents of the laundry basket on the dining table or a clear space on the floor. Sort items into piles – according to where they belong,...
Considering an upcoming painting project?  Check out the low VOC, environmentally friendly options at Benjamin Moore

Considering an upcoming painting project? Check out the low VOC, environmentally friendly options at Benjamin Moore

Beautiful Color. Lasting Durability. None of the other stuff. Creating a greener and safer life for you and your family should be simple. It should be easy to find environmentally sustainable products that offer exactly what you want – and nothing you don’t. Natura Waterborne Interior Paint continues Benjamin Moore’s commitment to providing the most environmentally friendly paint. Natura goes beyond zero VOC to offer zero emissions and no harsh fumes, making it a safer paint for your family and the environment, all without compromise to performance or color selection. Natura is truly “Green Without Compromise®.” Click here to learn...

About Going Green Gal

Being an avid gardener, born and raised in Indiana, I feel incredible blessed to live in sunny California & be able to grow my own food all year-round! I write a monthly garden column for the San Jose Mercury News & am constantly striving for tips & ideas on how to live a little more gently in regards to ourselves, our planet & each other – basically sustainability we can live with! As a fulltime realtor here in the Bay Area, I help my clients “Go Green” in & around their homes & communities.

I hope you will find my monthly Green Tips useful; & I hope you find inspiration in the monthly Garden Tips & the incredible Edibles You Can Plant & Grow!

WEEKLY GREEN TIP: Save time, money (and hopefully the planet)!

  • Bath vs. Shower? You may know the answer.

    The California Energy Commission estimates that taking a bath uses 30-50 gallons of water. An average shower, of just four minutes (even with an old shower head), uses just 20 gallons. In order to conserve one of our most precious resources, install a low-flow showerhead which uses just 10 gallons – a whopping 50% reduction in water consumption!


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