Go Green For Green

save some cash and help planet earth…at the same time!

GGFG is becoming more green- in the garden that is May 26, 2009

I LOVE veggies, but it was killing me to spend so much money for them in the grocery store.  Just two days ago I paid $1.99 for three cucumbers.  Yikes!

Since we moved into the house three years ago, I knew I wanted to have a veggie garden.  We’re very close to the beach,  so we have sandy soil that doesn’t give us the best growing conditions.  We would have had to put a lot of time and money into getting our soil up to par.  That’s when some nice ladies on a gardening messageboard I frequent pointed out the Square Foot Gardening method my Mel Bartholomew.  I quickly decided to buy the book from Amazon (I usually get from the library, but ours didn’t have this book in stock.)  I mapped out my future garden, bought the seeds, and started them inside.  Except the seeds didn’t grow very well *sigh*

Two weeks ago I decided to suck it up and buy plants for the garden.  First I hit Wal-mart, since I heard they have the best deals on veggie plants.  Not so!  I really didn’t want to spend $3 for each plant!  Then I decided to hit up my local garden center The Farm at Lloyd Road in Matawan, NJ.  I am SO glad I did.  Not only did they answer my ridiculous questions with kindness, their prices were amazing. $1.99 gets you a 6 pack of perennials (veggies included) or $13.99 for a flat of 8 packs.  I ended up getting a flat of flowers and a flat of veggies.  I highly recommend Lloyd Rd if you’re looking for garden supplies in Central NJ!

OK, so here is what we have planted:
Box 1:
2 Squares of Peas (grown from seed)
2 Squares of Cucumbers
1 Square of Jalepenos (grown from seed)
6 Squares of Bell Peppers
3 Squares of Red Beets (grown from seed)
2 Squares of Arugula

2009 - 168

2009 - 172

Box #2:
4 Squares Tomato
4 Squares Zuchinni
4 Squares Italian Eggplant
3 Squares mixed Parsley and Basil
1 Square Cilantro (grown from seed)

2009 - 169

Here is an allium plant that went in way too late in the season.  I wasn’t sure it would even bloom this year, but it seems to be coming along nicely.

Allium Bud

 

Advertisements
 

Salt and Vinegar- Not just a tasty potato chip flavor May 25, 2009

But it’s also an all-natural weed killer!

We have random vines of Poison Ivy that seem to infiltrate our yard every summer, and we have the most difficult time getting rid of them.  This year, I’ve made the decision not to use any of those nasty herbicides you find in the big box stores, and I was on a mission to find an all-natural & frugal version I could make myself.

I came across This Garden is Illegal’s list of the 7 Deadly Homemade Weed Killers and came up with a homemade concoction to kill those nasty weeds.

In a microwave safe container, mix:
28 oz of vinegar
1/4 c of salt
Heat until almost boiling, or until salt completely dissolves
Stir in a few drops of dish soap & pour into 32 oz spray bottle (recycled, of course)

Spray on those nasties, and they should be gone for good.  The particularly hardy ones may need a few doses to be completely eliminated.

Here are some of the results of my spraying session this afternoon:

2009 - 1652009 - 167

 

Even the Dog is Recycled! April 21, 2009

Filed under: Apollo,Dog,Green,Money Saver,recycle,Uncategorized — Allison @ 2:47 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

2006 was a big year for Eric & I. We decided to move out of our apartment and into a house about three week before our wedding. I secretly wanted to buy a house, just so I could get a dog. We knew we wanted a Golden Retriever mix, so we checked out Petfinder.com and found a bunch of golden mix puppies in our area. So two weeks after coming home from the honeymoon, we went to an adoption day at Petco to check out Pluto a golden retriever mix who had been transported to NJ from a high kill shelter in NC. Petfinder great, since you can find a dog of pretty much any breed available for adoption. Many out of state rescues are even willing to arrange transportation in order to get their dog placed into your home.

Eric firmly objected to adopting a dog so soon after moving into a new house. After all, we just had all of our new furniture delivered the day before. But when he set eyes on Pluto- now Apollo- it was love at first site. For the first year of his life, we couldn’t figure out what kind of dog he was. As spots started to appear on his tongue, we realized he was a Golden mixed with some Chow.

library-3257Apollo Cheesequakecimg1093_2

In the current state of the economy, there are thousands of dogs being displaced from their homes because their owners can no longer afford to take care of them. If you’re considering a new dog, please RECYCLE- errr ADOPT your new friend! If saving a life isn’t good enough reason, consider the fact that mixed breeds (mutts) like Apollo have fewer hereditary problems. And dogs from shelters are cheaper than buying one from a puppy store- but why the heck would you consider doing that anyway?

 

Save $460 a year by making your own coffee…. April 20, 2009

Filed under: Costco,Food/Drink,Money Saver — Allison @ 2:50 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

I’ll admit.  I’m a Starbucks junkie.  Always will be.  When I worked in the city, I couldn’t resist my Venti bold drip EVERY SINGLE DAY.  Do you have any idea how much that cost me?  With tax, $2.25 a day, $11.25 a week, $45.00 a month, or $540 A YEAR!

A little over a year ago, I took a job closer to home.  Lucky for me, and my wallet, the route to work doesn’t take me past a Starbucks.  For pure convenience, I decided to start brewing my own coffee at home.  I drink Kirkland brand (from Costco) Columbian whole-bean coffee.  I put 4 scoops (I like it strong!) into my Melitta Mill & Brew Coffee Maker to brew half a pot and away I go.  I drink a cup at home to get me out the door, I use a coffee tumbler that looks like a Starbucks Grande cup to take the rest to work with me:

photo_042009_0011

Here’s what it costs me to brew coffee from home for a whole year:

$59.95  3 lb bag of Columbian Roast from Costco $11.99 each * 5 used per year

$11.95  5 Gallons of milk used over the course of the year $2.39 each

Grand Total: $71.90

Total Saved: $468.10

# of Paper Cups Saved: 260

*This cost includes supplies to make coffee 365 days a year, when I was buying Starbucks 260 days a year and still brewing at home on the weekends, so the savings are actually higher than what is posted here*

I could save more money by buying coffee on sale at the grocery store with a coupon.  However, I REALLY enjoy this particular coffee blend and refuse to settle for a cheaper brand!  I think Kirkland Columbian tastes BETTER than the Starbucks I used to drink.

 

BLOG CANDY Win a green cleaning starter kit!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Allison @ 2:20 am

To celebrate the first day on our new blog, we’re giving away a starter kit to make your own green cleaning spray!

Includes: a recycled spray bottle with the ingredients to make the all-purpose cleaner listed below.  Just add water!

Contest ends April 25, 2009 at 11:59pm eastern standard time.  I’ll then use a random number generator to pick the winner!

 

Earth-friendly (and cheap!) cleaning supplies April 19, 2009

Filed under: Green Cleaning,Money Saver — Allison @ 11:52 pm
Tags: , , , ,

spraybottle1

We originally decided to go green with our cleaning supplies a number of years ago after realizing exactly what is in those strong-smelling bathroom and kitchen cleaners.  We haven’t turned back since.  I think the earth friendly cleaners actually work BETTER than their chemical-ridden counter parts.  BUT, have you seen how expensive some of those cleaners are?  Method cleaners are $4 a bottle, and I could easily use 6 of them a year.  That’s about $26 a year with tax.

Here’s how you can make 32 YEARS worth of cleaners for less than a year’s worth of name-brand products…

Your Shopping List:

Free- Spray Bottle (recycle an old one you already have)

$13.99- 32oz bottle of Dr. Bronners Peppermint Castile Soap (or pick a scent of your choice)

$4.49- 76oz box of 20 Mule Team Borax

$2.50- Lemon Juice (This is an item I always have in my Pantry)

Total: $21.16 (w/ tax)


All Purpose Cleaner- Mix Together in the Spray Bottle:

1 tsp. Dr. Bronner’s Soap

1 tsp. Borax

Spritz of Lemon Juice

Fill to the top with warm water & shake to mix.

Easy as pie!  And I actually really love the peppermint smell of this- it’s a very fresh scent.  You can feel free to add some essential oils like Lavendar if you’d like.

Check out EcoCycle for more green cleaner recipes.

 

Welcome to our world!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Allison @ 10:34 pm
Tags:

Welcome to Go Green for Green!  We’re a couple of newlyweds in our first home looking to save a few bucks and save the planet in the process.  Please check back for some great tips on how to save money.