Archive for August, 2008

1,400 Green Collar Jobs for Ohio

Evidently, General Motors has announced plans to invest $500 million in Lordston, Ohio, where it will manufacture the fuel-efficient Chevy Cruze.   The Cruze, which will be unveiled in October, is to get about 40 mpg.  This is a great move for GM and for our state.  I just wish that Ford would do the same so they wouldn’t have to close their plant in Batavia.  Lets get more green collard jobs in CINCINNATI!

Click here for the full article.

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August 23, 2008 at 5:06 pm Leave a comment

Rain Gardening in Cincinnati

This weekend I had the pleasure of attending a “rain garden 101” class at the Cincinnati Civic Garden Center.  What a fantastic class and place.  I must admit, while I admire gardens and people who garden, I’m terrible at keeping plants alive and/or tending to one.  My degree in biology only includes one botany class and to be fair and honest, I was never taught how to.  However, the idea of gardening intrigues me.  Every spring I vow to plant something, buy flowers or clean up my yard but every spring something happens and I get too busy; and my grand plans for gardening get put on hold for yet another year.  My husband grew up in the country and when I visit his home I’m in awe of my mother-in-laws ability to provide fresh produce all summer long.  I like the idea of gardening, but will I like the work involved? 

So back to my rain garden class.  When this idea was first introduced to me I immediately thought of my water in the basement problems (I live in an old house on a hill and have some leaky basement problems.)  Hoping to help solve some of these issues and maybe learn a thing or two about gardening I immediately signed up!

Rain Garden

Rain Garden

 

Taught by Tara Maddock with the Mill Creek Watershed Council and Anne Lyon with Greenacres Water Quality Project, this class was top notch.  Not only was the information extremely helpful, it was a helpful and informative way to get even the novice of gardeners (your truly) thinking about implementation. 

So what is a rain garden? Basically as I understood it, its set up opposite from a regular flower bed. Instead of making a mound you make a depression.  You select native plants (they’re more tolerant of your areas climate changes) and you select a spot that collects a lot of water run off and plant most water tolerant in the center with the dryer plants on the edges.  There are specifics that go into how deep you make your “hole” and how fast the water should drain out once its collected.  Nothing super complicated.

The Mill Creek Watershed Council has a great 12 page how to guide for planting your own Rain Garden.

 

 

 

 

Combined Sewer System

Combined Sewer System

 

I also learned numerous other reasons why rain gardens are helpful/beneficial to the community other than possibliby solving my own water problems.  The number one reason?  Reduction of storm water run off.   Rain gardens are a very effective way to filter excess pollutants from storm water before it flows into storm sewers and into our creeks and rivers. They also promote infiltration of rain water into the ground thus increasing local ground water supply and reducing the amount of water that needs to be carried by our storm sewers. This is very much needed in our City.  As some of you may know, we in Cincinnati are on a combined sewer system.  Just looking at the picture below gives you a good sense on why we need to reduce our storm water run off quickly!  I don’t like the thought of my sewage going into the local creeks, streams and rivers…

 

 

For those with an interest in Rain Gardens, there is a Rain Garden Alliance in Cincinnati.  A group made up of people from all walks and backgrounds interested in promoting rain gardens throughout our city.

Happy Gardening!

August 18, 2008 at 7:26 pm Leave a comment


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Libby Hunter and Jami Stutzman are local Cincinnati Realtors and members of the U.S. Green Building Council who have a passion for sustainable living. Environmental responsibility lies at the core of our business practice - let us show you how we can help with ecologically-minded real estate needs. Please browse our blog, visit our local green vendors' websites and if you are in the market to buy or sell a home, let us show you how green features can make all the difference in your experience!

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