What have you done today to lower your impact?

We are washing away the foundations of our existence on every front. It is high time we move from crashing about on the planet like a bull in china shop and find a way to go forward with intent. We must find systems of living based on sustainability. The systems and tools exist, it is up to each of us to adopt them.

Monday, 20 December 2010

The Sustainable Living Project Christmas tree

Most years I don't much get into the whole Christmas thing but I think I've caught the bug this year.

I had an unexplained need to listen to Christmas music a week or so ago. My theory is that since I don't listen to the radio, we don't have a TV and we don't go to malls I haven't been bombarded with the sonic landscape of Christmas which left me open to choosing when and where to enjoy it.

We've found a local church, Unitarian Universalist, and we thoroughly enjoyed the candle light service and Christmas party.

I've even set up a Christmas tree, of sorts, as you can see in the picture. It's that strange shrub shaped green bit with the odd  ornament or two just visible. But in the spirit of sustainability we managed to construct our tree from materials sourced onsite. I needed to trim the leyland cyprus nearest the house on the southeast corner in order to let more sun into the porch and house as well as to reduce shading on the garden. So I dragged out my ladders and loppers and went at it. From a well rounded full christmas tree shape it has gone to a rather needle shaped style for the winter. I chose some of the larger trimmings and arranged them into a shape that would fit into the corner of the sitting room. I shoved the butt end of the stems into a recycled pickle jar, added water and propped it up with some urbanite, strung a few lights left over from my parents things, an ornament or three and voila! A homemade Christmas.....shrub was born.

By the way, in true permaculture style of stacking functions, all the rest of the trimmings are going to pathways. Leyland cyprus needles are allelopathic and do quite a good job of suppressing grass. So with one job, I got more solar energy into the house and garden, a festive bit of Christmas deco, and some pathway mulch.

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