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Pesticides Harming the Bay

A new report released yesterday called on homeowners around the Chesapeake Bay to understand the consequences of common household pesticides and to reduce their use of the toxic substances. Here is the text of the release: Pesticides: The Unaddressed Bay Polluter Government and Public Urged to Tackle Chemical Threat For release Thursday July 30, 2009 Baltimore MD, 07/30/2009 – Unaddressed pesticide pollutio ...

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Wall Street Journal Report on Natural Pesticides

I'm a big fan of Wendy (or Gwendolyn) Bounds from the Wall Street Journal. I met her in July of 2007 during my first appearance on Good Morning America and we've kept in touch in the years since then. She's a huge advocate of trying anything organic in her yard. Given the fact that she's: a) from the Wall Street Journal and b) tall, blonde and beautiful, she gives those of us on the organic fringes a compel ...

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Organic Lawns Thrive in Texas Drought

Climate variances never cease to amaze me. As I sit here in soggy Maine with vernal pools that have usually evaporated by May still in evidence as we approach August, I also see on the news that Texas and parts of the nation are experiencing the worst drought in history. Three years ago I was in Texas to film organic lawn care segments for HGTV. One of our guests was Michael Bosco, an organic lawn care prof ...

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Lawns: Las Vegas Just Says No

I always bristle when people claim I'm anti-lawn. That couldn't be further from the truth. I love lawns; throwing the ball with my teenage son, among my favorite pastimes, wouldn't be the same without grass to play on. In some situations, though, lawns just don't belong . . . in Las Vegas for example. The region only gets about 4 inches of rain a year and the local lake is draining at a record pace. Here's ...

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Meet Scott Reil: The Helpful Gardener

I want to do a shout-out to a good friend from Connecticut, Scott Reil. He's a green industry veteran who has long been bucking stubborn colleagues when it comes to all things organic and sustainable. Scott has been answering gardeners' questions at http://www.helpfulgardener.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=15611 since before I knew the word blog existed. I just discovered that he gave our movie a good plug back ...

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Natural Fertilizer: Part II

As promised, here is another excerpt from my book, the Organic Lawn Care Manual (Storey Publishing, 2007). This relates to natural products that can be used as fertilizers: Animal By-Products Call me old-fashioned, but I still take all the manure I can get from the local farmers in my town. I grew up on a dairy farm and helped my grandfather spread cow manure on everything from the cornfields and hay fields ...

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Natural Fertilizers: Part I

Wouldn't it be great if you could feed your lawn and landscape without ever going to the garden center? Nothing against garden centers, mind you. If I have to shop, that's where I like to go. My point for this post, though, is that you don't necessarily HAVE to buy bagged products to apply to your gardens. All sorts of naturally occurring materials can be used as fertilizers. Here are just a few (as culled ...

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Stirring the Lawn Chemical Pot

(NOTE: This interview was conducted by Canadian journalist Mary Romanowski, who is allowing me to post it here) An Interview with Activist Paul Tukey, Narrator of A Chemical Reaction A new documentary film, A Chemical Reaction, is set to make the rounds at the film festival circuit for the next few months and then be released on DVD in 2010. Centering on the anti-pesticide movement that has swept across Can ...

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New Jersey jumps on Phosphorus Ban Bandwagon

The news arrived yesterday that the state of New Jersey is about to enact bans on phosphorus in lawn fertilizer. This will no doubt anger the chemical fertilizer industry, which continues to suffer hit after hit in Canada and the U.S. Their lobbyists will send out all sorts of information to explain why this is a bad idea. Even people who aren't lobbyists are not quite sure the phosphorus in lawn fertilizer ...

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Autism Once Again Linked to Pesticides

Scientists at the University of California-Davis released a study this week that suggests environmental changes including pesticides are likely at the root of the increase in autism. "It's time to start looking for the environmental culprits responsible for the remarkable increase in the rate of autism in California," said Irva Hertz-Picciotto, an epidemiology professor at University of California, Davis wh ...

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