Innovative solutions for creating healthy, efficient, eco-friendly homes

June 2008

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Home weather stations

Here’s the hypothetical situation: You’re planning a two-week vacation and need to make sure the lawn and garden are properly watered in your absence. The irrigation system can be programmed but you’re not sure where to set the watering level. How much rain did the area get this time last year? What if the forecasted storm doesn’t materialize, or what if it lingers longer than expected?

Watch Your Water!

Nothing drives me crazier than seeing lawn sprinklers going off during a rainstorm. Potable water is a precious resource we must manage carefully and responsibly. By adopting water-conserving strategies and making use of a growing number of products on the market today, homeowners can not only save water but also spend less time on yard care, so they can enjoy more leisurely summertime activities.

Creating a Fire-Resistant Home

Wildfires were particularly destructive last year, especially in the West, where thousands of homes were destroyed, and in the South, where drought left trees and shrubbery tinder-dry. Already this year, wildfires have sprung up in Virginia, the Carolinas, Florida, Texas, Colorado, Nevada and California, destroying homes and property.

Designer Decks

Designer Decks

Roofs on the Cutting Edge

Flowering succulents may seem more suited to a rock garden in your yard, but at Southface Energy Institute in Atlanta, Ga., a team of workers recently planted rows and rows of sedum, hens-and-chicks and other types of vegetation up on the roof of the nonprofit organization’s new Eco Office. The energy-efficient, environmentally sustainable office building has been designed to demonstrate a number of cutting-edge technologies, such as its new green roof.

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