Green Ideas for Daily Living

If you want to green your life, one of the first things you need to do is learn to think outside the box. There are green solutions in almost all areas of your life. All it takes is a little creative thinking.

And if all that feels overwhelming – just read about the 13 year old boy who figured out a way to make solar panels 50% more efficient. He studied the patterns of trees and built a solar panel that mimics the way trees collect sunlight.

You don’t have to come up with groundbreaking ideas as he did, but a few little tricks can save energy and save you money.

Do you have a patio or a garden? Use recycled or found objects to make planters or containers. Some of them can be quite beautiful and unique. A worn out old tire makes a great flower bed. I’ve seen a Dutch oven used as a hanging flower basket, and I’ve even seen an old work boot used as a plant holder. I regularly use 2 liter soda bottles as plant starters. I just cut off the tops and use the bottoms to grow small tomato plants or peppers. When they get bigger, I transplant them into a larger pot and re-use the pop bottles. Tin cans make great plant holders – just make a couple of holes in the bottom for drainage, and you’re good to go. You can paint them, if you’d like a prettier look.

These bird planters get a round of applause for the most creative way to use old tires. Giddy Up Swings and Things make them, and they’re awesome!

Save containers and use them to freeze or store leftovers – you now have a great use for that butter container that’s been hanging around in your cabinet. Or store things like buttons, nails, or art supplies in them. Use glass jars in the same way, or use them as drinking glasses. I have a friend who uses mason jars to serve iced tea in, and they’re super cute.

If you have the storage space, buy products in bulk and store them. Buy health and beauty products in bulk, and keep them under your sink or buy household goods in bulk and put them in a spare cabinet. Buy school supplies in bulk, and store them from year to year if you have the room. There will be less packaging, so less waste goes in landfills. You’ll also save energy – less trips out to buy means less fuel used. Re-use the bottles or recycle them when they’re empty to keep them out of landfills.

Do you have any ‘out of the box’ ideas for green living? Let me know on twitter, Facebook, or leave me a message here on the blog.


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