Top 10 Green Posts of 2013

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Each month here at BuildDirect, I write between eight and twelve blog posts. That’s a lot of reading to put out that much material! Sometimes I do all the research then never write about the topic for a variety of reasons.

I learn a lot, some of it out of my realm of knowledge, some of it extensions of things I am passionate about. It’s fun and challenging, as all writing is. At the end of each year, I am amazed at what I have learned and what I have written. Here are 10 of the most popular posts from 2013.

Laptop on green grass

1. Cork flooring sustainability

Whenever I remodel, I always consider cork for flooring, countertops and wall coverings. It’s got great acoustics, is easy to maintain, and it looks natural, which I love. It’s also highly sustainable. Is Cork the Most Sustainable Building Material?

2. Building with shipping containers

Reducing waste and recycling are big parts of my home design. Reusing shipping containers to create a house is on my list of dream projects. Shipping Container Construction: Versatility & Sustainability

3. Eco-friendly pest control

Everyone I know complained about fruit flies in their houses last summer. I needed to find a way to naturally combat them, because they were out of hand in my kitchen! Getting Rid of Fruit Flies the Eco-friendly Way

4. Winterizing your home efficiently

As soon as the weather gets cool in the fall, I start to look for ways to tighten up my house. Winterizing cuts heating bills in winter and cooling bills in summer. Winterize Your Home for Energy Efficiency

5. Mud as an alternative building material

Mud was the first building material. It makes excellent thermal mass cutting energy bills. From earthships to hand-made cob, earth absorbs heat to radiate out at night for heating, or it holds heat to keep a room cool. Building Earth-Based Houses

6. Food deserts and what to do about them

I keep toying with the idea of starting a daily mobile farmer’s market. Harvest in the morning and deliver in the afternoon. Go to a different area each day, and get food to people in food deserts. Food Desert: Sustainable Food Solutions In A New Century

7. Organic gardening for beginners

This year, I met a lot of new gardeners wanting to take control of their food source, since GMO ingredients are not listed on labels, and food that is not organic is toxic. This was a good place for them to start learning! Organic Gardening – Easy Vegetables for Beginners

8. Weeds in your salad for a green diet

One way to avoid GMO food is to forage. Wild Foods: Eat Your Weeds

9. How to grow your own food all year long

If you want to grow food and you’re soil is not optimal, there are alternatives, such as strawbales and coldframes. They can extend the season, too. Organic Gardening – Strawbale Gardens and Coldframes

10. Recycled building materials

Recycled building materials are the best. I had no idea steel is not made new. It is constantly recycled from scrap. Green Building Materials: Recycled Concrete & Recycled Steel

Happy New Year!

So here’s to more research, learning and writing in 2014! Happy New Year! May it be full of gardening and recycling, and devoid of waste!

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Nan Fischer

Nan Fischer has been living and building green for over 35 years. Nan’s emphasis on the BuildDirect blog is about how to make your dollar stretch further, while also moving toward a more sustainable lifestyle, as well as upcoming and existing technology to help us live in an ecologically-friendly way. Nan also authors posts on the website of her seed business, sweetly seeds.