Tip for Sustainable Living: The Joy of Gardening
“Therefore strive that your actions day by day
may be beautiful prayers.” —‘Abdu’l-Bahá
Monthly tips about sustainable living are designed to inspire you to adapt them to your personal circumstances and locale and to help you generate other ideas about how to live a more responsible life, socially and environmentally. If we all pitch in by individually reducing our consumption and adopting a simpler life, we can collectively mitigate the severity of climate change, reduce human suffering, and keep the Earth a livable place for future generations.—CHRISTINE MULLER
The Joy of Gardening
“Bahá’u’lláh loved the beauty and verdure of the country.
One day He passed the remark:
‘I have not gazed on verdure for nine years.
The country is the world of the soul,
the city is the world of bodies.’”
‘Abdu’l-Bahá, quoted in J. E. Esslemont,
Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era 35
Planting flowers and vegetables brings multiple joys. You can watch perennial flowers come up faithfully every year and be surprised about the shape and colors of flowers sprouting up from seeds. Working with soil and plants heals your soul and is good exercise for your body. Gardening is a meaningful way to connect children with nature. Community gardening can strengthen the social bonds in a neighborhood and can improve nutrition, particularly in cities. Locally grown food contributes to food security and to resilience in difficult times. Planting a wide variety of vegetables and flowers provides much needed food and habitat for our endangered pollinators—just be careful not to kill them with herbicides and pesticides (more on that next time). The food you grow locally is not only better for your personal health but also for the environment because you eliminate greenhouse-gas emissions caused by transporting food. You can grow food in your yard, in an empty city plot, on your roof, in pots on your balcony, or in front of your house. For information about community gardening, visit https://www.nal.usda.gov/afsic/community-gardening or https://communitygarden.org/.
Do Not Kill—Avoid Toxic Chemicals in Your Garden and Yard
Install Programmable Thermostats
TIPS BY CATEGORIES
Shower Less—Cleanliness in the 21st Century
Use Energy-Efficient Appliances
Avoid Single-Use (Disposable) Items
Save Money, Save the Planet by Insulating Your House
Hang Your Laundry Out to Dry for the Children of the World
Buy Clean Energy
Do a Home Energy Audit!
Search as Service on the Web (Use Ecosia and Plant a Tree)
Clean Safely—Avoid Toxic Chemicals in Your House