Tag Archives: living tree

Mechanized Insects, Please Buy Me Something Green and Rent A Living Tree

Grasshopper by Mike Libby

Plaid pants aside, I really have found the perfect gift for the man who has everything. Because he most certainly has never had, doesn’t currently have and should definitely have one of the amazing creations by Mike Libby. In Libby, I have found yet another genre-bending artist who takes design, creativity and reuse to an entirely new level. Libby takes real (not live) insects and crustaceans, intact, and mechanizes them. Yep. Puts moving parts in and about and on them to make them, well, really cool. Read an article on his work from 1800recycling.com, where I learned about Libby, or check out Insect Lab and his entire collection and read more about his extensive body of work. I think he and Edouard Martinet should have a show together. In my living room.

Speaking of my living room, there is a sweet little *plastic Christmas tree in its corner, thanks to the generous offer of my neighbor. But I know some of you don’t have tree-giving neighbors and haven’t yet done the one thing everyone expects you to do: (besides go to college, get married and have kids) Put a Christmas tree in your living room. Here’s a new find, a place out of San Jose, where you can rent a living Christmas tree, and if you are so inclined, they’ll tag your tree and you can get the same one year after year. How cool is that?

Now, you’ll need presents to put under that tree. Treehugger, inhabitat, 1800recycling, The Daily Green, and uncommon goods all have fabulous green gift lists, so check them out. Jessica Bates of 1800recycling.com gives us a few tips on eco-friendly gift wrap and Green Halloween made a video on wrapping with fabric, that quite frankly, makes me think twice about ever using tape and scissors again – and I like tape and scissors.

For a gift that needs no wrapping, give a tree dedication from treepeople.org: “A Tree Dedication gift starts at $25 for one tree and the recipient will receive a personalized greeting card. Multiple trees can be dedicated, or for a gift of $100 a special certificate announcing a grove of trees will be sent to the recipient.” I want a grove of trees in my name!

For gifts that give back: often times a buy one and one will be donated scenario. How can you not?

For gifts that don’t require wrapping or the giving of stuff. This is a Jocelyn favorite.

For the kiddies: Green gifts for children from Treehouse gifts in Berkeley.

*Remember how I said that living trees and even cut-down trees are better than plastic? Well, they are, but anything second-hand trumps anything new.

-Jocelyn Broyles

Advertisements

Green Your Christmas Holiday with a Living Tree

Photo http://www.christmastree company.com

When it comes down to how you’re going to green your Christmas, you’ve got about seven gazillion options, but the one thing nearly everyone does first, is go get a tree. And there’re definitely opposite sides of the fence when it comes to the sustainability of living trees, versus cut trees, versus plastic trees.

Having done my research, as I am wont to do, when you’re considering your green Christmas tree, plastic trees loose. Hands down. They’re generally made of PVC (nasty, old-format plastic made in China that off gasses toxins left and right) and even if they’re made of newer, less toxic petrochemicals, the trees often contain lead that flakes off over the years and their cores are often PVC.

Photo from lulu.com boots by schu

So what’s a girl to do? Put on some all natural mascara, some non-formaldehyde (among other things) vegan nail polish, some animal-friendly boots and go decorate the tree in your front yard – and don’t be tree-ist! Any tree will do, whether it’s got piney-type needles or not. Just ask the folks at SF Environment, where for $100 they will loan you a non-traditional, San Francisco-friendly potted tree, pick it up at your home after the Holiday and plant it for you somewhere in the city!

There are also mini-tree options if you live in a small space, want to give a tree, or just want to simplify your life. The Pinery, out of So. Cal., offers a variety of trees and tree-like options.

-Jocelyn Broyles