King County Master Gardener Plant Sale and Garden Market: May 5th and 6th

King County Master Gardener Plant Sale and Garden Market

UW Center for Urban Horticulture

3501 NE 41st St., Seattle

Friday, May 5, 4-8 PM open to public

For the Friday Preview Party, tickets available online

Saturday, May 6, 9-5 PM

NO SUNDAY

This is the King County Master Gardeners 2-Day Sale.

The weekend starts with the Preview Party a fundraiser for the MG Foundation of King County, Friday, May 5. Tickets are available.

Tons of tomatoes, veggie starts, fragrant herbs, perennials, natives and specialty vendors with garden art. Master Gardeners will help to to choose the right plants, find easy-to-grow plants, and give advice on planting and maintaining your garden throughout the year. Join us to get your garden growing this year.

NEW this year. Garden Education Talks on Saturday, May 6th. Open to the Public: Ciscoe Morris, Karen Chapman, Bill Thorness, Elaine Sherbrooke.

Please visit website for times and more details: mgfkc.org

 

 

Guide for sustainablewestseattle.org: Environmentally safe cleaning methods.

 

Easy Changes, Big Impact: How to Make Your Cleaning Routine Better for the Environment

Trying to be more eco-friendly as a busy parent can sometimes seem like a struggle – you already have so much on your hands, how can you find the time? If you’re looking for simple ideas that can really make a difference to the environment – and your family – then why not start by reassessing what’s in your cleaning cupboard? It can be as easy as picking up a different product in the store, but having a real impact; studies by the Environmental Protection Agency show that indoor air can be two to five times more polluted than outside air due to toxic chemicals from cleaning products.

Better for the Environment

Thousands of deaths of marine animals yearly can be attributed to toxic pollution from synthetic chemicals entering the natural water system. The plastic packaging from the products contributes to this further; large patches of garbage floating in the ocean have reached the size of US states. This scale of impact throws out the balance of entire eco-systems – all to get that sparkling finish on your counter tops.

Better for Your Family

Closer to home, studies have also shown that conventional cleaning products can increase the risk of asthma in children; and many scientists support the ‘hygiene hypothesis’ that using chemical cleaners which are “too effective” limits the exposure of children to germs. This means that their immune systems fail to build up defences against harmful bacteria and become hypersensitive, often causing lifelong allergies to things like dust and pollen.

How to Make Your Cleaning More Eco-Friendly

Fortunately, it’s easy and simple to switch to environmentally conscious cleaning products and methods, without sacrificing the results. Many of the solutions can be homemade, and are far cheaper than branded alternatives. Get creative and think about where else you can apply the principles: how about cleaning your car or pet’s crate?

·         If you have limey water prone to scaling up in your bathroom and kitchen, try something acidic like vinegar, lemon juice or diet soda to remove the deposits.

·         Stains on ovens, sinks or cookers respond well to bicarbonate of soda.

·         Open your windows regularly for a blast of fresh air rather than spraying harmful aerosols or using air conditioning units.

·         Use natural wax or oil for cleaning and polishing furniture.

If you’re struggling to go 100% eco-friendly straight away, don’t worry – try and cut out the most toxic chemicals first. Ammonia and chlorine are too big ones to watch out for; and by doing so, you’ll be helping the environment and your family.

Celebrate the start of spring!

Power to the Partnership.

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Celebrate the start of spring!

This month we officially say goodbye to winter and welcome the the start of spring. This means that it’s that time of year when our forests will be getting greener, giving us all the more reason to get outside. Check out how we are celebrating the spring season by spreading awareness about invasive species and learning about Washington’s early bloomers.

Invasive Species Awareness Week

Last week, we celebrated Invasive Species Awareness Week by featuring insights from local ecologists on their “favorite” invasive plants. Click HERE to see what Seattle Parks and Recreation’s own Bridget Kelsh has to say about invasive blackberry and her time spent tackling it on Seattle’s Natural Areas Crew.

See it? Report it!

The Washington Invasive Species Council has created an easy-to-use app to report sightings of invasive plants, animals and other pesky organisms anywhere in Washington State. Just take a photo and upload it to the app, and your report will be sent directly to the right agency. Learn more about the app HERE.

Signs of Spring

It may be hard to believe, but the official start of spring is just two weeks away! Forterra wants you to know which native plants will be blooming in the month ahead, and to get to know Washington’s true first signs of spring. Click HERE to learn about Washington’s early-bloomers, and get to know more about our state’s native plants.

UPCOMING WORK PARTIES

Kick off the start of spring by getting outside and giving back to Seattle’s forests! Check out some upcoming events below, and many, many more can be found here online.

Hitts Hill Park

(S. Brandon St.)

Sat, March 11

10am

RSVP!

Martha Washington Park

(Warsaw St.)

Sun, March 12

10am

RSVP!

West Duwamish Greenbelt

(12th Ave. SW & SW Myrtle St)

Sat, March 18

10am

RSVP!

Licton Springs

(97th & Ashworth)

Sat, March 11

10am

RSVP!

SW Queen Anne Greenbelt

(12th W. & W. Blaine)

Thur, March 16

9:30am

RSVP!

Ravenna Park

(NE 55th St.)

Sat, March 18

10am

RSVP!

It’s time to come out of winter hibernation and get out into Seattle Parks! We hope to see you in the forest this spring.

– The Green Seattle Partnership team

Images: Green Seattle Partnership, Forterra, Nicole Marcotte, Ben Mawhinney

Visit the West Seattle Nursery Garden Stage!

wsNurs

You probably already know, but if you don’t, the West Seattle Nursery and Garden Center is a wonderful place to get plantings, supplies and advice. They employ great people that are very knowledgeable about what to plant, where to plant, and when to plant it. This cool garden shop is sponsoring (and decorating!) the GreenLife Garden Stage this year.

Picture: fragrant hanging baskets, nice lush saplings, a billion 4″ plantings…and BEAUTIFUL music bellowing about! That’s what we’re picturing too! Come on by and visit, both the Nursery and the stage.

Resilience During Times of Crisis

Believe it: Many of our WS neighbors are experiencing crisis- homelessness, hunger, gentrification, drug addiction, crime and more. How will we support our most vulnerable populations? What happens when we find ourselves in crisis? As more challenges come, what can West Seattle learn about resilience and strong communities from the economic crisis in Spain?

We’ll host a public discussion at the Admiral Bird on Saturday April 23rd 6-8PM to hear those living through real struggle and how they deal with crisis.

Join Sustainable West Seattle in listening to stories of coming together, and pooling resources to survive economic crisis.. Learn about the resource and time sharing projects West Seattle is using to build resilience in our community.

Guests: 

Please come by and join the discussion!

More info:

Since 2008, working people in Spain have been experiencing an impoverishment of the middle class. A slow elimination of safety nets and social services, lay-offs of public employees, wide-scale evictions, homelessness while homes stand empty, and a rising cost of living without a rise in wage. Despite media propaganda, armed forces at public protests and failed reforms, popular resistance movements in Spain have endured and adapted from the 15 Million people movement called Indignados to form a third party, Podemos, to challenge the Spanish two-party system.

Find Your Precinct Caucus Here

It’s very important that we all, as US citizens, participate in local democracy. After all, national democracy begins at the local level…believe it or not. We need the right people in all offices. If you follow climate change science, the urgency is obvious. We need top-down and simultaneously, bottom-up change to reverse our effects on the planet. We work locally, we vote nationally.

In order to vote for the presidential candidate you want to see lead the nation, you first need to get them on the ballot! Thats where the caucus comes in.

We, as thinking/mover/shakers/creators, have to spend time building a future. We are the participatory bunch, the able and willing. At 30+ years on earth, I’ve just come to realize this…I’m on the creative side. I strive to produce more than I consume. Part of this production is the act of voting..of producing results, literally, tallied results. I will produce a vote for the candidate I want to see nominated for president. I WILL CAUCUS ON SATURDAY MARCH 26th FROM 10am-2pm…and longer if necessary!

I hope you too stay positive, get out and caucus and most importantly…don’t get discouraged! We can do this! We are doing this! See below for how to find your precinct and caucus.

I’ll be honest, it’s not easy to find your precinct caucus. You first have to this website and enter your address to find your precinct number, then click and open the local precinct location list below to see where your Precinct Caucus will be held:

Caucus Locations by Precinct.pdf

More info on the caucus process

 

You better caucus!!

 

See you there… 🙂

What Its Like to Buy an Electric Vehicle

Local West Seattleite Andy Silber discusses his recent purchase of an EV:

 

I’ve joined the ranks of Electric Car drivers

 

For years I’ve been saying that when our Honda Civic died, we’d replace it with a Nissan Leaf.  Well, the Honda died and we just bought a Leaf. I thought I’d share our process.

Why a Leaf? There are lots of electric cars on the market. Several are just too expensive (e.g. the Tesla). Others are available only in states like California that have a mandate that require manufacturers sell a small number of electric cars. Those models are hard or impossible to find in states that don’t have a mandate (like Washington). That leaves basically the Nissan Leaf and the Chevy Volt (which is a plug-in hybrid that burns gasoline when the batteries are empty). Though I like the Volt, it’s a bit more expensive and I liked the simplicity of a pure electric vehicle: no gas stations, oil changes, or tail pipe. The 85-mile range of the Leaf is sufficient for our daily driving and with charging stations becoming common, even longer trips are possible. For instance, Catherine wants to visit a farm in Sultan, over 50 miles away. Since there’s a level 3 charging station at the Sultan visitors center, it only takes 20 minutes of charging before heading home with a nearly full “tank”.

Why now? We considered being a one-car family, just our trusty 1996 Subaru wagon. I take the bus to work, we live 3 blocks from a rent-a-car office with great weekend rates, and there are Car2Go cars in our neighborhood. I’m sure we could have made it work. Heck, we know people who are car free, and they don’t live next to two bus routes like we do. When we went to test drive the Leaf, it was just to check it out, not buy one. After we drove the car and liked it, they shared the deal: $6,500 off of sticker from Nissan, an interest free loan worth over $2,000, $7,500 tax credit from the feds, and a sales tax exemption from Washington State worth over $2,000. They made us an offer we couldn’t refuse.

We could have waited a few months until the 2016 Leaf comes out, which will have a range of over 100 miles. We could have waited a few years until the Tesla 3 comes out, which I’m sure will be amazing and much cheaper than the current Tesla. If you think about it in the terms of disruptive technology, something new (e.g. electric cars) replaces what came before (e.g. internal combustion engines) not because it’s all around better, but because it’s good enough on most elements (e.g. range, safety, driving experience, purchases price) and better on a few elements that the previous solution hadn’t focused on (e.g. low greenhouse-gas emission, total cost of ownership). A small percentage of the population will start buying the new solution because they care about the previously ignored values, which will spur development until the new technology becomes the standard. For us, the Leaf is either good enough (e.g. on range) or better (e.g. greenness) across all fronts. So why wait? Also, Nissan’s generous rebates are designed to get the 2015 cars off the lot before the 2016 model shows up: I’d rather pay $6,500 less and not get next year’s model.

“The Secret of Change” Documentary Teaser

Just received a little note from our friends over at OWL Positive Broadcasting. SWS met with them as part of their journey down the west coast. Here is the teaser from their upcoming documentary “The Secret of Change”.

Hello Friends!

We have now finished filming, can you believe it!? Can’t believe how quickly the time has passed, seems like only yesterday we were staying with you guys in West Seattle. At the moment we’re in California staying with friends until we fly out to Mexico on Sunday, very exciting!
We’ve had an incredible journey filming with so many people and initiatives over the last few months and we have put together a very brief teaser (which you feature in) to give an idea of what is to come so I thought I’d share it with you.
I hope you enjoy it and please feel free to share with as many people, in as many ways as you please ;-).
We are beginning work on a crowd-funder as we speak and aim to have that completed by the end of the month so we’ll let you guys know when that launches.
With love and gratitude
Chris & Zoe