Honoring the Earth and the People Who Honor Their Home Planet with Articles & Tips

Claire Papin Interviews

Gayla Trail

"You Grow Girl" (Organic Gardening)

This is not your grandmother's gardening book. You Grow Girl is a hip, humorous how-to for crafty gals everywhere who are discovering a passion for gardening but lack the know-how to turn their dreams of homegrown tomatoes and fresh-cut flowers into a reality. Gayla Trail, creator of, provides guidance for both beginning and intermediate gardeners with engaging tips, projects, and recipes -- whether you have access to a small backyard or merely to a fire escape. You Grow Girl eliminates the intimidation factor and reveals how easy and enjoyable it can be to cultivate plants and flowers even when resources and space are limited.

Interview Guest-Gayla Trail.mp3

We are all part of the earth solution

I was amazed when I heard the coordinator say… “And before the children's picnic, we’ll have the lawn sprayed to keep the fire ants away.”

I couldn’t believe my ears. Not only was the lawn going to be sprayed with pesticides, but they were going to send children to romp around in the chemical soup. My mind rushed with thoughts about how many other organizations might be doing the same thing. Could it be possible that we are still so behind the times that some of the most basic health and environmental knowledge out there today; available in almost every place we turn now, is still not being used by the very places we would expect the most observance?

I shuddered to think it might be true. Then it occurred to me that at least one reason I heard those concerning words was because I had assumed they already knew about the risks to humans, animals, and the environment when using these kinds of chemicals. I had not taken any steps to find out how much they knew about eco-friendly practices beforehand. At that moment the wise words “if not you, then who, if not now, when?” bubbled up from my memory. I had quoted those words to others many times over the years, and now I was reminding myself. It was time to let them know that I’d be happy to offer information about greening a community, and “walk the talk” of my “we are all part of the solution” philosophy.

There was no time to lose … as a start, I connected with someone on the staff to offer information about professional companies that provide organically-based lawn care service. They were very happy to learn about the alternatives and eager to explore a greener method of working with the community’s lawn, especially where the children were concerned.

There are different levels of outreach anyone can offer to their community. I realize that not everyone has the time to lead, or even participate in, a green committee with every organization in which they are involved. However, if one is aware of something that could be a healthier, or a greener alternative, sharing the information could make a greater difference than one might think.

For example, connecting with someone in charge and saying “Have you considered recycled paper products for the restrooms, I’ve heard Seventh Generation has discounts for large quantity orders, here’s there website …” or “I’ve heard that you’re serving unfiltered tap water from pitchers in the children’s Sunday school rooms, would you like to know about the pitchers that have built in water filters? It would be a much healthier way to go.”

As enough people take notice and offer their support by sharing information, or even by volunteering, the change we most want to see will accelerate, and before long, become the new norm. The resources for taking the green road are growing and improving every day, and thankfully bringing more eco-friendly ideas and resources to the forefront, while infusing greater enthusiasm for the journey. In-Joy, Claire Papin

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