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Taking a Leap into an Eco-Friendly Fall

A column about our little "patch" of Earth, and how we can all make it a little greener.

Taking a Leap into an Eco-Friendly Fall Taking a Leap into an Eco-Friendly Fall

With Autumn leaves in all their vibrant colors right now, here are a few ways to enjoy the season in an eco-friendly way.

True tree-hugging. 

Nothing says earth-friendly like celebrating nature itself, and right now that means enjoying the fall foliage. Long Island boasts many a setting for a scenic stroll in the park, and our area is no exception -- Mill Pond Park Preserve in Bellmore, Wantagh Park and Cedar Creek Park in Wantagh, and in East Meadow to name a few. 

There’s an app for that! 

Can’t tell a red maple from a cedar? Visit the website for the nonprofit conservation and education organization Arbor Day for tree identification tips. Or, better yet, try their app., “What Tree Is That?”. Or consider the free iPhone app, Leafsnap. Just take a photo of any leaf, and the app. will tell you what type of tree it’s from and all sorts of other information. 

Pumpkins plus.

For seasonal decorations indoors and out, try natural choices such as pumpkins, various types of squash, gourds, mums, cornstalks, bales of hay and the like available at local garden centers such as Island Greenery or Old Mill Nursery in Bellmore, or in East Meadow, or Abbie's Parkside Nursery in Wantagh. (See more ideas in last year’s  column.) 

Green inside.

Now may be a good time to buy indoor plants and place them throughout your house to improve air quality since colder weather means more time spent inside. Interestingly, NASA did a  study to find out which plants were best to filter the air of the space station (by producing oxygen and also absorbing benzene, formaldehyde and/or trichloroethylene. Top-rated plants include philodendron, spider plants, bamboo palms, English ivy, Gerbera daisies, and planted mums. 

Food Day, Oct. 24. 

Visit  FoodDay.org to help support Food Day which takes place on October 24. Also learn about its many goals such as supporting local farms and promoting health by curbing junk-food marketing to kids. Food Day asks all Americans from all walks of life to push for healthy, affordable food produced in a sustainable, humane way. It is sponsored by the non-profit Center for Science in the Public Interest, the watchdog group that has campaigned for food labeling, better nutrition, and safer food since 1971. 

Car check.

Check out your car to make sure it’s ready for the colder weather. Optimizing tire pressure and doing routine maintenance make for better gas mileage and lower emissions -- less fossil fuels needed! Aside from that, you may prevent a breakdown, especially inconvenient on a cold day!  Take care of this locally perhaps at A1 Bellmore Auto Repair or Mill Pond Auto in Bellmore, T&T Auto in Wantagh or Seaford Auto Care in Seaford, or in East Meadow.

Do you have any environment-related questions, or “go green” ideas or techniques? Please let the Green Gal know! E-mail her at nhiler@optonline.net or write in the comments section below.

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