Archive for March, 2015

America’s Response To Green Goes Global

March 31, 2015

As promised in our last blog, we have answers as to what America is doing in the Green Goes Global ring. The good ol’ US of A is putting it’s gloves on and we are coming out swinging.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is launching a new strategy to promote the use of green infrastructure by cities and towns to reduce stormwater runoff that pollutes our nation’s streams, creeks, rivers, lakes and coastal waters. Green infrastructure decreases pollution to local waterways by treating rain where it falls and keeping polluted stormwater from entering sewer systems. In addition to protecting Americans’ health by decreasing water pollution, green infrastructure provides many community benefits including increased economic activity and neighborhood revitalization, job creation, energy savings and increased recreational and green space.

Stormwater is one of the most widespread challenges to water quality in the nation. Large volumes of polluted stormwater degrade our nation’s rivers, lakes and aquatic habitats and contribute to downstream flooding. Green infrastructure captures and filters pollutants by passing stormwater through soils and retaining it on site. Effective green infrastructure tools and techniques include green roofs, permeable materials, alternative designs for streets and buildings, trees, rain gardens and rain harvesting systems.

As part of the strategy, EPA will work with partners including local governments, watershed groups, tribes and others in 10 cities that have utilized green infrastructure and have plans for additional projects. EPA will encourage and support expanded use of green infrastructure in these cities and highlight them as models for other municipalities around the country. The 10 cities are: Austin, Texas; Boston, Mass.; Cleveland, Ohio; Denver, Colo.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Kansas City, Mo.; Los Angeles, Calif.; Puyallup, Wash.; Syracuse, N.Y.; and Washington, DC and neighboring Anacostia Watershed communities.

Energy savings is one of the greatest benefits of green infrastructure. On and around buildings, green infrastructure can reduce heating and cooling costs. For example, green roofs reduce a building’s energy costs by 10 to 15 percent, and an additional 10 percent of urban tree canopy can provide 5 to 10 percent energy savings from shading and windblocking. Green infrastructure also conserves energy by reducing the amount of stormwater entering combined collection and treatment systems, which reduces the amount of wastewater processed at treatment plants.

So do your duty America! GO GREEN! And we can tell you how…. or better yet let us show you today!  www.insideplants.net

Remodeling and Home Design

Green is Global

March 24, 2015

France decrees new rooftops must be covered in plants or solar panels!!!

green-6All new buildings in commercial zones across the country must comply with new environmental legislation. Rooftops on new buildings built in commercial zones in France must either be partially covered in plants or solar panels, under a law approved on Thursday. Green roofs have an isolating effect, helping reduce the amount of energy needed to heat a building in winter and cool it in summer.

They also retain rainwater, thus helping reduce problems with runoff, while favoring biodiversity and giving birds a place to nest in the urban jungle, ecologists say. The law approved by parliament was more limited in scope than initial calls by French environmental activists to make green roofs that cover the entire surface mandatory on all new buildings.

The Socialist government convinced activists to limit the scope of the law to commercial buildings. The law was also made less difficult for businesses by requiring only part of the roof to be covered with plants, and giving them the choice of installing solar panels to generate electricity instead. Green roofs are popular in Germany and Australia, and Canada’s city of Toronto adopted a by-law in 2009 mandating them in industrial and residential buildings.

If you are interested in learning more or you have questions on how to get your own Green Roof, stay tuned! Our next feature blog will be talking about Americas response and how we can help you to obtain an eco friendly green roof where you are!  www.insideplants.net

Remodeling and Home Design

Put some Green in your Space

March 18, 2015

You don’t need the luck of the Irish this Saint Paddy’s day. You just need a little green in your space. Here’s a few ideas and what they do.

Bamboo
Bamboo is known for attracting joy and wealth. It offers protection and luck, can break hexes and grants wishes! Bamboo is said to help increase mental flexibility, aid in spiritual growth, help people to develop artistic talents, and encourages good health. If you’re depressed, bamboo is a great plant to have in your home, as it can help you to feel less stuck.

Basil
Basil brings love, passion, wealth, luck and beauty to your home, and we could all use a little of that! If you grow your own basil and use it to flavour your food, it’s said that you’ll awaken passion in anyone who eats it. Ooh la la! Basil is known for being an antidepressant, antiseptic and antibacterial, too.

Honeysuckle
Honeysuckle brings money into your home and offers protection. Some people believe that crushing the flowers and placing them next to your forehead can boost psychic powers. The smell of honeysuckle sharpens your intuition, too. In addition to smelling absolutely incredible, honeysuckle also has a delicious edible nectar.

Jasmine
Jasmine attracts love and money into your home, and encourages prophetic dreams! Jasmine oil is known for being one of the most powerful aphrodisiacs, so this is a fantastic plant for single babes or anyone wanting to keep the romance alive! Jasmine flowers are often worn by high priestesses. Incredibly, jasmine flowers open at night, which, to my mind, makes them even cooler.

Lemon
As well as being bright and happy, lemons are a fantastic thing to have around the house! They symbolise purification and friendship, and it’s said that if you wear diluted lemon oil during the full moon, it will help you attune with its energies. Plus, how great would it be to have your own lemons for making drinks and salad dressings?!

Orchid
Orchids represent love: they attract love, soothe the soul, and deepen friendships. The ancient Greeks associated orchids with fertility and virility, which makes them a great gift for new parents!  www.insideplants.net

Remodeling and Home Design

Yeah! WE DO THAT!

March 10, 2015

IMG_20150105_075455588 (3)INSIDE PLANTS has been providing quality plants and services since 1978. Our creative designs for both home and office use living plants to bring the freshness of the outdoors inside. We offer a variety of interior plants, both live and artificial and beautiful decorative containers to compliment any interior design. Our team of professional interiorscapers, many who are certified landscape technicians, are trained in interior plant maintenance and design and will provide the best care for your plant selection.

We cover everything from your basic home and business care to rentals and party designs. Our consultations are free and we are here 5 days a week to answer all your plant questions. Call us and see for yourself the difference our service creates in your environment today! It really is that easy to hear us say, ” Yeah, we do that!”. www.insideplants.net

Remodeling and Home Design

Plants Enhance your Quality of Life

March 3, 2015

IMG_20140514_102929_864When you decorate interior spaces with houseplants, you’re not just adding greenery. These living organisms interact with your body, mind and home in ways that enhance the quality of life.

Breathing Easier
When you breathe, your body takes in oxygen and releases carbon dioxide. During photosynthesis, plants absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen. This opposite pattern of gas use makes plants and people natural partners. Adding plants to interior spaces can increase oxygen levels.

Releasing Water
As part of the photosynthetic and respiratory processes, plants release moisture vapor, which increases humidity of the air around them. Plants release roughly 97 percent of the water they take in. Place several plants together, and you can increase the humidity of a room, which helps keeps respiratory distresses at bay.

Purifying Air
Plants remove toxins from air – up to 87 percent of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) every 24 hours, according to NASA research. VOCs include substances like formaldehyde (present in rugs, vinyl, cigarette smoke and grocery bags), benzene and trichloroethylene (both found in man-made fibers, inks, solvents and paint).Modern climate-controlled, air-tight buildings trap VOCs inside. The NASA research discovered that plants purify that trapped air by pulling contaminants into soil, where root zone microorganisms convert VOCs into food for the plant.

Improving Health
Adding plants to hospital rooms speeds recovery rates of surgical patients, according to researchers at Kansas State University. Compared to patients in rooms without plants, patients in rooms with plants request less pain medication, have lower heart rates and blood pressure, experience less fatigue and anxiety, and are released from the hospital sooner.  The Dutch Product Board for Horticulture commissioned a workplace study that discovered that adding plants to office settings decreases fatigue, colds, headaches, coughs, sore throats and flu-like symptoms. In another study by the Agricultural University of Norway, sickness rates fell by more than 60 percent in offices with plants.

Sharpening Focus
A study at The Royal College of Agriculture in Circencester, England, found that students demonstrate 70 percent greater attentiveness when they’re taught in rooms containing plants. In the same study, attendance was also higher for lectures given in classrooms with plants.

How Many Plants?
The recommendations vary based on your goals.

  • To improve health and reduce fatigue and stress, place one large plant (8-inch diameter pot or larger) every 129 square feet. In office or classroom settings, position plants so each person has greenery in view.
  • To purify air, use 15 to 18 plants in 6- to 8-inch diameter pots for an 1,800-square-foot house. That’s roughly one larger plant every 100 square feet. Achieve similar results with two smaller plants (4- to 5-inch pots).

www.insideplants.net

Remodeling and Home Design

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