How to live greener in the city or suburbs

I was born and raised a country girl, growing up on a 200-acre farm on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.  I thought that eating veggies from the garden every summer, apples from our trees in the fall, and composting all of our organic matter was how everyone lived.  After living in NYC for a few years though, I realized how difficult it was to feel like one is living a green, sustainable lifestyle. 
City living definitely has aspects that are greener than country living, like being able to walk everywhere.  There are also more and more products coming out everyday to help you live a green city life.  There are bigger things you can do, like adding a beautiful and useful conservatory, where you can grow plants – veggies, herbs, and flowers.  Also keep in mind, many houseplants serve as great air purifiers, which is something you definitely need in the city. 

If your budget allows, a conservatory like the one above is like a little slice of heaven!  Warm and sunny, it a beautiful way to have an indoor garden.

…or you can start out small with a tabletop conservatory or terrarium.
via Gardenista

Terrariums are very popular now and there are tons of DIY instructions and pre-made options available.
via Urban Comfort

via Real Simple

Or, you can container garden, which is what Chris and I do in our condo when it’s too cold to keep our plants on the balcony.  They serve as air purifies and decor!

If you have even a few extra square feet, you can keep a small compost container, and drop off your scraps somewhere that accepts them.  Some Whole Foods accept compost, or ask at your local farmers market if any of the farmers would be willing to take it off your hands.  You can also check out to search for composters in your area.

via Apartment Therapy

If you have a little extra space, google indoor worm composting, and you’ll find a lot of great resources!

via Hooked on Houses

via Urban Eco Chic

Another big way to green your home is the windows.  My parents switched to energy efficient windows a few years ago and the difference is enormous.  There are certain parts of any house – in the city or in the country – that need to be looked after in order to avoid wasting a lot of energy. If you don’t have double-glazing windows at home then this is definitely one step in the right direction you could take.  This is best done by checking out the website of a big name company such as Anglian Home Improvements. If you take some time to look into it then you will see that there are a number of other jobs you can do about the place in order to make it more environmentally friendly. The good news is that by doing it right and choosing a style that suits the property then it can work equally well in the city or in a country home.  

What do you do to make your carbon footprint a little bit smaller?

The article is written in association with Anglian Home Improvements.

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