Effectiveness Of Pollutant Removing, Runoff Mitigating Rain Gardens.

Rain garden in SeattleRain gardens are a big deal in the Pacific Northwest. In areas with combined storm and sanitary sewers, rain gardens have been installed to slow down runoff during heavy rains in order to prevent sewage overflows. A nice bonus of a rain garden is its ability to filter out pollutants (driveway oil, lawn chemicals, heavy metals etc.) from residential runoff before it reaches a sewage treatment plant and ultimately, a waterway.

So what happens to the pollutants captured by rain gardens? Do they become toxic over time? The results are surprising.

If you get a chance, check out “Are Rain Gardens Mini Toxic Cleanup Sites?” by Lisa Stiffler. I refuse to TMZ’up Ms. Stiffler’s article. [Sightline]


What To Do With Your Jack O’ Lantern After Halloween.

Sad rotting Jack O' Lantern wishes he were a pie.

"Wish I were a pie."

In addition to sharing a short 3 week lifespan, Jack O’ Lanterns and Christmas trees also share a disposal problem. Once your pumpkin is carved, post Halloween uses for your Jack O’ Latern are limited. So we searched around to find simple alternatives to throwing your briefly-loved Jack O’ Lantern into the trash and here’s our list:

    1. Bury Jack: the easiest non-garbage option is to bury Jack somewhere in your yard.
    2. Compost Jack: cut him up first and then dump his remains in the compost bin.
    3. Pickle Jack’s rind: if it’s relatively fresh. (Not doing this.)
    4. Feed Jack to chickens: chickens would love to eat Jack. Give him to a neighbor with chickens or take him to a local farm.

Another option is to have your kids paint a face on the pumpkin, instead of carving, and then shine a light on it. When Halloween is over, you’ll have a non-rotting and intact pumpkin that the chef in your house can go nuts with preparing soups, desserts etc.


The $100,000 ‘Beau Coop’ Chicken Coop From Neiman Marcus.

Neiman Marcus Beau Coop Chicken Coop.

Beau Coop chicks and eggs.

Chicks: "Don't hate on us. We just live here."

Spending beaucoup dollars on Neiman Marcus’s $100,000 Beau Coop chicken coop is très wasteful.

After some thinking, we did discover a benefit that could come from purchasing the outrageous Beau Coop. Maybe somebody would dive into farming, who wouldn’t otherwise, with some egg-laying chickens and the Beau Coop. And after they purchase the Beau Coop, they’ll be less likely to spend $100k on a motor home for their poop-laying dog. [Boing Boing]


This Year’s “Lord Of The Gourd” Record Breaking Pumpkin Weighed 2009 Pounds. You Know What? We’re Going To Need A Bigger Hippo.

Ron Wallace's Record Breaking 2009 Lbs Pumpkin.At the 2012 Topsfield Fair in Massachusetts, Ron Wallace surpassed the 1 ton ceiling by growing a 2009 lbs pumpkin. Hoping they wouldn’t go to waste, I contacted the organizers of the Topsfield Fair to find out what the competitors did with their massive pumpkins after the fair and they told me that it’s up to each participant. I have a video suggestion below but this is definitely going to be a group project. [Treehugger]


Plant Host Drone (PHD) Lets Your Plants Follow The Sunlight. Still Gets A Damn Unnecessary Machine (DUM) From Jubbling.

Plant Host Drone (PHD)Don’t get me wrong, the Plant Host Drone (PHD) is a neat project and its creator, Belgian sculptor Stephen Verstraete, is more talented asleep than I am awake. I just hope people don’t consider putting their houseplants on autonomous, battery-powered vehicles that follow the sunlight a viable product. Even if the PHD served double duty and dragged a cat toy around the room as it moved, it still wouldn’t make the Jubbling cut. It’s a greenie “fishing with hand grenades” kind of idea. [Gizmag]


Updated $169 Koubachi Wi-Fi Sensor Now Lets Your Outside Plants Tell You When They’re Too Hot And Hungry.

Koubachi Wi-Fi Plant SensorVersion 2.0 of the Koubachi Wi-Fi plant sensor is going to hit the market in October 2012 and sell at a price of $169. The updated version now works indoors & outdoors and lets the grower know their plant’s soil moisture level, light and temperature via a free cloud service. A good tool to keep your plants alive if you’ve got that kind of cabbage to spend.

If you don’t have Koubachi type cash on hand, then maybe a Kobayashi Komposter is for you. The Kobayashi Komposter Inspired by the world-famous eating champ, Kobayashi, our planned kompost bin will devour all the plants you kill by not purchasing the Koubachi and more! Of course we’re still waiting for one manufacturer to take us seriously and hoping Kobayashi will return our calls. MSRP: $130.

While we wait for the deal to finalize, Jubbling’s other alternative to the $169 Koubachi is for me to email you twice a week and remind you to “water your freakin plants!” At $50 per year, it’s a bargain. [GizMag]