Saturday, December 31, 2011

Conversation Starters for tonight's party

Here's a top ten list sent to me by Laurie T that makes my list of the Best of 2011.

What has been the highlight of your year? Share it in the comments section. Please mention this blog as one of your highlights, even if it is your first visit - I need the emotional support...

Have fun tonight!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Before you plant your seeds, feed your worms

Research done at Cornell University has confirmed that compost aids in disease suppression, and that when seeds are planted with vermicompost the organisms in the compost will colonize the seed and will also protect the seedling from unfriendly organisms.

Read the full article at
Check out the brilliant photo - the cosmic metaphor of micro-organisms is obvious. There is a universe in every drop of compost! Read Mycelium Running by Paul Stamets.

I start the new solar year (22 Dec) by planting a tray of seeds. This year I am going on a winter vacation and I won't be able to start growing as early as usual so I chose to Go Wild!, as the Edmonton Naturalization Group says. My tray of 5 native plant varieties is stratifying on my porch until I return from my holiday.

Can't wait to win the Front Yards in Bloom Natural Garden award this year!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Holiday Message from Roy

Happy Holidays!

Staff in our downtown office decorated this Christmas tree with ornaments made from recycled items, such as this one I'm holding made from a used light bulb.

These recycled items remind me of the beginning of our modern waste management system.... a simple recycling pilot.

They remind me of how much we have achieved as a result of this simple act and how, at times, simple words are all that's needed.

As such, I send you heartfelt thanks for the role you play in making our Branch a leader among cities and in delivering services that are most appreciated by our residents.

I wish you and your family an enjoyable Christmas and hope that 2012 will be a year you'll want to remember.


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Bulb Eater comes to Ambleside Eco Station

The deer and voles have have some competition for bulbs now that Ambleside has its own Bulb Eater.

I don't think they'll complain.

Bulbs (aka CF lamps) from Coronation and Strathcona Eco Stations are sent to Ambleside for processing. It can take a variety of bulb shapes and sizes, and the video below demonstrates how much impact it will make on our waste stream.

Just another example of the excellent services residents get for their WM Utility fees.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Opt Out of CanPages

I noticed the CanPages in my mailbox today.

If you would rather not recieve them, opt out at

I'll be returning mine to their office next time I'm on the South Side.

Happy Waste Free Holidays!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


On Monday I had the opportunity to tour two industries in Edmonton that purchase and process some recyclables from our blue bags/blue bins. Thanks to Garry for organizing the trip!

The tour visited Allied Paper Savers and the Alberta Beverage Container Recycling Corporation Materials Recovery Facility(ABCRC MRF).

Allied Paper Savers purchases newspaper which is collected at Recycle Depots around the City. This newspaper is sorted and sold to CAN-CELL Industries Inc. to be turned into one of three products; Weathershield, Wallbar, and Fibremulch.

The ABCRC MRF receives refundable bottles collected from Bottle Depots in Edmonton and beyond. One interesting fact is that caps do not need to be removed from refundable containers taken to the bottle depots, however residents are still encouraged to remove caps for collection with Caps Off Program. Proceeds of the program go to the Rainbow Society of Alberta. This facility was beautiful to explore with large cubes of compacted milk cartons, plastic bottles, and aluminum drink cans stacked around the warehouse.