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May 2018





30 Connect with us | dlrgroup.com

offices located around the world West-MEC Southwest Energy Campus

... what if the education campus not only taught about the energy industry, but incorporated energy related concepts into every aspect of the curriculum and environment? … what if it created a net-zero energy high school building in the nation as a teaching tool? … what if it harvested the power of the sun while providing protective shade to the inhabitants below?

Maricopa County Attorney’s Office Building

Total Square Feet: 263,595 SF Number of County Attorneys to occupy the facility: 935 Total $ saved using adaptive reuse rather than new building: Approximately $70 Million Anticipated waste diverted from landfills: 2,105,000 lbs. of reinforcing steel 65,117,000 lbs. of concrete (16,633 cubic yards of concrete)

“The highest form of true sustainability is to repurpose an existing facility.� -Craig Randock, AIA DLR Group, Design Leader

Previously Owned, Forever Loved

Proud supporters of the Arizona Humane Society.

mysisterscloset.com Men • Women • Home


May 2018 features



live green

8 Turning Green

10 Yellow Brick Road




Self Driving Cars

20 Compost, Compostside, Compost Box 22 Microgardening

12 Smart, Efficient, Beautiful Homes 16 Fun Green Facts 18 Self Love

work green 24 Mayor Stanton 26 Conscious Connections 28 Self Driving Car

on the cover Blue Sky Homes is creating green homes in the already lush Arcadia area and a buzz in the community. That's because their vision goes beyond sustainability. Sit out on the front porch or pick up your pink cruiser and head out for some neighborhood joe. It's more than a green home, it's a great lifestyle.

play green 14 March Eco Event Recap

40 Recipes

30 Edible Trees

42 The Grumpy Gardener

43 White Mountain Nature Center

43 Green Champions

35 Volvo Review

44 Green Scenes

36 Hosting a Party

46 Cool Outrageous Stuff

38 Packrat Love

47 He's Green, She's Green


May 2018 | greenliving


May 2018 Editor’s letter

Hello Readers, It’s May, and that means our cool days are numbered. Before you can say scorching, sweltering summer heat, the triple-digit days will be upon us. Right now, I am sitting at my kitchen table with all of my windows opened, enjoying the cool air and writing to you. Last month, we celebrated Mother Earth and all things environmental. This month, we have dropped the Earth -- it’s all about mothers. Our Cool Outrageous Stuff offers pampering products for our precious moms, many of whom have, in their own abstract way, been pioneers in the world of preservation. How else would you explain their almost innate desire to pass values and valuables down to their children? Preservation is a family matter, whether it’s the desire to preserve old photos or a Sicilian baked ziti recipe (which in my case, can now be perfectly recreated by my older son) or something more important, like being mindful of the environment. I remember something Publisher Dorie Morales shared with me when we first met. After one of her son’s baseball games, Keaton asked, “Mom, how about we walk around the park and pick up trash?” And that is exactly what they did. It still amazes me. This month, Dorie scored a sit-down interview with Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and learned how he helped one of the least sustainable cities in the U.S. do a complete turnaround. A 50-acre Resource Innovation Campus has been opened for imaginative businesses to access waste materials and make new products (like creating glassware from old wine bottles). And, the city opened a one-of-a-kind compost facility that can process up to 220,000 tons of compostable material, which can be sold as fertilizer. Sounds like a wonderful program but I wouldn’t want a whiff of that. My Turning Green column is a picture of being plagued by plastic and the process of walking away from water bottles. Send your alternatives for a budget-minded family of four to dolores@greenlivingaz.com. And please, if you want to join me in growing towards greener living, fill out the form that accompanies the story or online at greenlivingaz.com. And there is more -- a follow-up on the autonomous car awry, composting, migrogardening and party-planning tips from artist and Paradise Valley designer Patsy Lowry. So sit down, open the windows while you still can, and enjoy our May issue!

And thanks for reading!,

Dolores Tropiano Editor I LOVE TO HEAR FROM OUR READERS!

Email me at dolores@greenlivingaz.com

4 greenliving | May 2018



Dorie Morales Aaron Blackburn Dolores Tropiano Sara Haidle Rachel Luman

ADVISORY BOARD: Valerie Crosby Ken Edwins William Janhonen Jon Kitchell

Mary McCormick Eric Olsen Thomas Williams




Connecting ConnectingWomen Womenwhere wherethey they centralphoenixwomen.org




Work, Work,Live LiveororPlay Play!

CONTRIBUTORS: Catherine Bartlett RJ Brenner Daniel Brown John and Jennifer Buckhart Andre Butzberger Faith Cain Ric Coggins Ben Dayton

C. Haire Kristi Hall Patsy Lowry Dorie Morales David Schaller Terri Schlichenmeyer Dolores Tropiano Daniel Tweedall


Lisa Racz

Melissa Watt


Cassidy Rust Maddie Mosley


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Achieve your health and fitness goals and reach your peak performance at Bauman’s. We specialize in intense fitness and strength training that increases tone and strength without extreme heavy lifting. We offer one-on-one training or unique group classes that never repeat the same class and include cardio, self-defense, boxing and martial arts. And help your kids develop lifelong nutrition and exercise habits with martial arts, sports training and more fitness classes designed just for them. We also offer a world class nutritional program and counseling. Come to Bauman’s and take your fitness to a new Xtreme.

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Green Living magazine is a monthly publication by Traditional Media Group, LLC. Periodical rate postage paid at Scottsdale, AZ. Publisher assumes no responsibility for unsolicited or contributed manuscripts, photographs, artwork or advertisements. Entire contents © 2016 Traditional Media Group. All rights reserved. Reproduction or use of content in any manner without permission by the publisher is strictly prohibited. Opinions expressed in signed columns and articles do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher. Submissions will not be returned unless arranged to do so in writing. One print subscription is $39 per year or digital subscription is $12 per year. Canadian orders please add $13 per year for shipping and handling. International orders add $22 per year for shipping and handling. Bulk and/or corporate rates available. No representation is made as to the accuracy hereof and is printed subject to errors and omissions. Green Living magazine is printed on recycled paper.


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May 2018 | greenliving


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When: Monday, May 14 @ 6:30pm Where: 5310 E. High Street #100, Phoenix What: String Art on the patio

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Keeping Our Heads Above Water... Bottles Our decision to banish plastic bottles


n the film “The Guilt Trip,” Joyce Brewster’s son is horrified when his mom (played by Barbra Streisand) refills a plastic bottle at the refrigerator water dispenser. He undoubtedly believes she should just buy another case of bottled water. But the eco-minded viewers may have given mom five DOLORES TROPIANO sustainability stars for unknowingly preventing more plastic from flooding the ocean or overflowing throughout the house.

PROLIFERATING PLASTIC I wish that worked in our home. While I’m happy my boys are hydrated, their plastic bottles seem to spread faster than dirty, orphaned socks throughout our home (especially after our fridge dispenser broke).

8 greenliving | May 2018

If I go into their bathroom, bottles are beside the throne. When I clean under the sofa, surprise, several have rolled under. They accompany soccer, Spikeball and every Fortnite Battle Royale. But when the fun ends, the bottles never find their way to the recycling bin. When friends are over, bottles multiply exponentially. They range from nearly empty, to half full, to (this is my personal favorite) opened and full, so no one else can possibly drink from them. Sometimes, late at night when they’re asleep, I roam from room to room picking up bottles in various stages of empty and pouring them into flower pots, the dog’s bowl, and -- regrettably -- down the drain. I can’t imagine that on the third day, when God created water, his vision was to neatly divide it into 16-ounce plastic bottles for our drinking pleasure. greenlivingaz.com

Comedian Jim Gaffigan built an entire routine around the stupidity of bottled water. “I know it’s free from the faucet,” he says, “but I want to pay for it.” Gaffigan’s theory behind this marketing phenomena is that some cigarette-smoking Frenchmen were debating the dumb decimal of American consumers and had voilà moment, “I bet we can sell them water.” And not just any water. When my kids drink bottled water in public, Bashas’ brand just won’t do. It has to be the better bottled water, the exceptional, higher quality H2O, as opposed to the cheap, watered-down water. So, I decided that abolishing water bottles would be my first official effort at turning green.

TESTING THE WATER SOLUTIONS Last month, I tried to banish water bottles after buying a filtered pitcher. But there were two problems. First, every time the pitcher was empty, it was left on the table waiting for a magic wand to refill it. And second, and of much greater concern, tiny, black specs started appearing in the water. So, back to the store I went for another case of bottles. Recently, my older son saw the (empty, half-empty, full) bottles scattered through the house, and it hit him. He realized we had a problem with plastic bottles. (Besides the garbage patch making waves in the Pacific.

“But we need an alternative,” he said. I soon learned that finding an alternative was like pursuing the perfect mate on Match.com. There’s lots of sorting and studying, and even then the choice can fall short. And it seemed that now that the search was on, everywhere I looked, possibilities popped out. Sparkletts trucks cut me off on the road, discounted water coupons arrived in the mail, and at Costco the water salespeople shouted out at me like beer vendors at a baseball game. I discovered big jugs of delivered water that (in my petty opinion) are an option for the office but an eyesore for a home. There are countless varieties of filtered pitchers and faucets...and then there is reverse osmosis. Did you know that you can boil the evil out of water? Here are my top picks: prickly pear and dungeness crab shells (which trap dissolved metals in water). Those look like realistic options. I can’t be the first to fish through fresh-water options. Can you help? Please send any suggestions from your search to dolores@greenlivingaz. com. The winner will get a year’s supply of Evian, the essence of purity. Just kidding. But wouldn’t the French love that? Dolores Tropiano is the managing editor of Green Living magazine. She has worked in print and broadcast media for more than 20 years. Tropiano lives in Scottsdale


What small change will you make this month? In our April issue, I started a series called Turning Green. It’s about my adventure towards greener living. (OK, it is not exactly a safari trip, but an adventure sounded like more fun than a journey). I would love this to be OUR adventure. Won’t you join me? This month, my family is going to try to eliminate plastic water bottles that have taken over our home, not to mention the ocean. What can you begin with? We have put together a tear-out to tape on your refrigerator as a reminder of your decision. You can also find one at greenlivingaz.com. Please share successes and stumbles forward that we can feature or not, if that is your preference. The main idea is to get moving towards change for our lives and the life of the planet.


TURNING GREEN COMMITMENT CARD • On (date) ________ I/we (circle one) decided to change... ______________________________. • I/We believe this is an important because________________. • Green Living or ____________________will help me/us stay accountable. • These are action steps needed to make this happen: • __________________________________________________ • __________________________________________________ • __________________________________________________

May 2018 | greenliving


FAMILY HISTORY OF HEALING AT THE HOXEY In Part 4 of his series on recovering from cancer, writer Ric Coggins arrives at the Hoxsey Clinic in Mexico


hen I arrived at the Hoxsey Clinic in Tijuana, I felt like I had entered Emerald City to have my audience with the great and powerful OZ, with the exception of a few changes in script. Not only was I not in “Kansas” anymore, I was not in the United States. While I was new to the Hoxsey Clinic, the Hoxsey Clinic was not new to me. I had RIC COGGINS first heard the Hoxsey name as an 8-yearold in the early 1960s. I remember my mom telling me that my great-grandmother from Detroit had been diagnosed with cancer and, though she was not expected to live, was going to some place in Mexico called Hoxsey. Later in life I would learn that my greatgrandmother had been told she had a month to live and that the conventional medicine of the time could do nothing more for her. After treatment at Hoxsey, my great-grandmother fully recovered from the cancer and lived a number of years longer, finally dying of other causes. The Hoxsey name came up again in the mid-1960s when my grandfather, a heavy smoker, was diagnosed with lung cancer. I remember my mom telling me that “Grampie” might only have six months to live. I recall he, too, made the pilgrimage 3 miles across the Tijuana border and was treated at the Hoxsey Clinic. Although he never did quit smoking, he was fully healed of lung cancer through the Hoxsey regimen and died 13 years later of a heart attack. His cancer had never returned. The Hoxsey name came up one more time in my life, just a few

10 greenliving | May 2018

years back, when my mom was diagnosed with uterine cancer. She, however, was convinced by her allopathic Arizona doctors that medicine had made great advances since the 1960s when her grandmother and father were healed by Hoxsey. She opted for the route of conventional surgery and radiation. By the time she realized it was not working, she was far too ill to travel to Mexico and we sadly lost her to the disease. Visitors to the Hoxsey clinic arrive early in the morning each weekday to somewhat of a “cattle call” appointment. That Monday morning, we all signed in at a reception desk and handed over our medical records. The staff doctors immediately began to triage us, sorting new patients to be seen by oldest and sickest first. I took a chair in a large patient waiting room with my wife and children and waited to be called. Sitting there, I overheard languages from around the world. Some patients had been given up on by allopathic medicine, some were now cancer-free and back for a checkup, some were in process, and some, like me, were there for the first time. Minutes later, a friendly woman in her eighties, spryly pushing a walker, entered the room. In a big Texas accent she introduced herself, one by one, to everyone in the room. “Hi, I’m Liz!” she said, extending her hand. “How are you doing? I remember you from when you were here before.” Or, “This is your first time here, welcome!” By the time she made it to me, I had over heard her say that she was “Mildred’s sister.” “Mildred.” I knew that name. I suddenly remembered that as a child, my grandparents frequently talked about “Mildred” in reference to their trips to the Hoxsey clinic. Mildred Nelson was the nurse who moved the Hoxsey Clinic from America to Mexico in 1963 when the greenlivingaz.com

American Medical Association and the Food and Drug Administration closed down the 17 American Hoxsey Clinics in one day. The AMA had hounded Dr. Hoxsey for decades his regimen included none of the pharmaceutical treatments funded both either the AMA and the FDA. This saga is well documented on the internet. Mildred Nelson was the one who oversaw the successful treatment of my great-grandmother and grandfather. Liz, her “younger” sister, took over running the clinic when her older sister, Mildred, died in 1999. Liz’s son, Mike, has since taken that role, but Liz is still in charge of hospitality. I felt a nostalgic awe come over me, realizing that three generations of Liz’s family had made it possible for me, a fourth-generation Hoxsey patient, to have access to the healing process that had saved my great-grandmother and grandfather. Far sooner than expected, I heard my last name called. Realizing I was far from being the oldest in the waiting room, I reasoned that something in my medical records must have caused the doctors to believe I fell into the “sickest” category. I was lead to the clinic’s inhouse blood and radiology lab for a blood test. A few minutes later, I was lead to the office of the first of the three doctors I would see at the clinic. Next month, I’ll share my experiences with the three Hoxsey staff doctors who saw me, and the disconcerting conclusions they came to. Ric Coggins is a University of Arizona Master Gardener (Maricopa County) who grew up on a 1-acre garden tended to by his father, who was a regular contributor to Mother Earth News and Organic Gardening and Farming magazines. Ric continues his father’s “green” traditions, owning and operating The Fool on the Hill Farm, a one-acre organic garden homestead in Mesa.


May 2018 | greenliving


Home Sweet (Smart, Efficient, Beautiful) Home

Blue Sky Homes aims high with green builds

By Dolores Tropiano


lue Sky Homes completed construction on Ashwood Circle in March, and before the last solar panels were put in place, five of the eight new North Central homes builds were sold. That says a lot for a guy who came to Arizona to play professional baseball. Nick Blue turned from green turf to green building, opening his development business in 2009. Two years later, his wife Adralyn came on board. Since then, the real estate development company has purchased and sold more than 300 properties, making $100 million in real estate transactions. “We like to joke that he’s the visionary and I get things done,” said Adralyn. Part of the appeal of the homes is their package of priorities – details that create an environmentally sound atmosphere and the latest

12 greenliving | May 2018

technology combined with good old fashion features like front porches with fireplaces in walkable communities. Ashwood Circle is one of the Valley’s first truly smart and green communities. “It shows that there is a legitimate demand for green projects,” said Nick Blue. “We want to meet that demand and stay inline with our own professional integrity and morals – building residences that have high efficiency together with quality materials.” The homes include smart technology and energy-efficient building materials, including a tablet on the entry wall for home automation, spray foam insulation, no-VOC paint, and an electric vehicle charging outlet in the garage. Brand new solar systems add up to big savings. Green materials mean clean air quality and better health. And, another bonus,


some of the builds have naturally cool downstairs basements. All homes are also made with an eye to the future, including pre-wiring for complete integration. “We are passionate about keeping our building in line with our progressive ideals,” said Nick. “Building houses that will be relevant 10 years down the road is important to us.” Then there is a fun final touch. At closing, buyers receive two custom beach cruisers to get them out in the community. Blue Sky Homes adhere to a high level of self-imposed scrutiny, which is both impressive from a business standpoint and a comfort for buyers. All of their properties are audited by two third-party businesses that check energy efficiency, framing, insulation and more. Blue Sky Homes are as much as 96 percent more efficient than standard new builds says Nick, adding that, “They go through everything to make sure our guys are doing it right.” Nick and Adralyn are driven by a passion for energy savings and healthy living, motivated in part by their role as parents to their 4-yearold daughter, Gabriella. “We have a young daughter, and our decisions are made with family in mind,” said Nick, who manages the organization’s finances. Adralyn executes design details that make each residence both beautiful and desirable. She has a gift for bringing the heart to each of the homes the couple creates. greenlivingaz.com

“I bring his vision to life,” Adralyn said. Adralyn works hard to ensure that within her communities, there is diversity in both design and style. Some homes are created with an industrial feel. Others may lean towards the traditional. “I want them to feel like they are in a custom home,” she explains, “while retaining the Blue Sky signature style.” Big cozy front patios in homes placed strategically near local restaurants, cafés and parks are part of the plan to encourage residents to interact and to promote walkable communities. “It seems to be a trend now,” she said. “People don’t want to be in their cars all the time. Of course it is green, but it’s also a better quality of life.” All that and more, does not go unnoticed by new homeowners. “I love the many, many, thoughtful details from the great lighting in my bathroom to the shelving and layout of my closet. So functional and amazing,” said Erica Siestma, an Arcadia property resident. “ I just love everything about my house - even with my sparse decor, the house shines due to its thoughtful and quality touches.”

May 2018 | greenliving


ECO EVENT Guests mingled with vendors and bank employees alike to talk about ways to save both the environment and their wallets. So much fun! VENDORS AND PARTNERS INCLUDED: Alliance Bank Green Organics Pest Control Embajador Tequila Veggie Dome Witnessing Nature in Food Pomegranate PourMasters Phoenix ale brewery Events by Danielle Net Neighborhood TV Pure Haven Azmom


on the next one



14 greenliving | May 2018


where enlightened entrepreneurs come to learn, grow, play and profit!

Fourth Birthday Bash Wednesday, May 16 6pm-9pm Starfire Golf Club, Scottsdale Join us for a lively, informative and uplifting celebration as CC creator Kristi Hall takes the stage to share her top lessons in life, leadership and business. Meet key community influencers, enjoy appetizers, wine, cake and birthday presents and learn how one woman’s dream has grown into an engaged following of 8,000 local purpose-based business owners. Guests welcome! Tickets available at

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May 2018 | greenliving



For more green fun facts, visit greenlivingaz.com/ greenfunfacts

FUN GREEN FACTS Check out these fun facts about new and future green travel!



In 2019, new cars will be taking connectivity to another level, helping drivers to prevent collisions and decrease travel time. For the last decade, the U.S. Department of Transportation has been developing a communication system for cars that would allow traffic lights and individual cars to coordinate their driving to minimize major crashes and be more fuel efficient. The company plans to implement wireless computer systems into cars to create environmentally conscious and interconnected vehicles. Among the first targets for the new technology are New York City and Brooklyn. The Department of Transportation has funded $42 million for the 10,000 systems to be used in city-owned vehicles.



How would you like to find parking spots without losing your patience? Better yet, what if you could drive directly to the only spot left in Downtown Phoenix on the way to a Diamondbacks game? Parkmobile can make that happen. The parking app lets you easily find and pay for parking from your mobile phone or on the web for over 3,000 locations across the country, including on-street, lots, garages, college campuses, airports and stadiums. It can even pay an expired parking meter while you are away from your parking spot. It’s a green solution that limits the amount of time wasted in idle or driving in circles waiting for parking. parkmobile.io



The future of transportation is unclear but also nearly unrestricted. The current environmentally conscious attitude has influenced Uber’s decision to branch out from car transit to dockless bicycles and public transit as well. These new options not only help to secure the company’s involvement in the future of transportation, but they also provide an understanding of how traveling has changed and may continue to change. Will cars remain popular? Will bikes and scooters smother towns? Maybe they will create future travel so we can find out soon.

16 greenliving | May 2018



Getting from city to city is time consuming, whether you have to drive through miles of traffic or wait hours for a flight. In comes Hyperloop, a sealed system of tubes facilitated by magnetic accelerators that will be able to carry cargo or people at more than 700 mph, Developed by Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX and Tesla, the first proposed route would allow riders to travel between Los Angeles and San Francisco in just 35 minutes. Hopefully, a Phoenix to San Diego route is in the works. greenlivingaz.com

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May 2018 | greenliving


SEND YOURSELF A MESSAGE OF LOVE: A case for positive body image

By Adrienne Udarbe

Did you make goals for yourself in January? How are you doing so far? For many, the beginning of a new year is a time for reflection, change, and setting goals. Oftentimes, these goals focus on maintaining healthier lifestyles, like changing what we eat or how our bodies look and feel. Sometimes, however, the expectations we set for ourselves and the ways we go about reaching them can be unrealistic and ultimately unhealthy. For many women, maintaining a positive body image is a constant challenge. We are often our harshest critics, when we should actually be our biggest cheerleaders. Feelings and thoughts associated with a negative body image can seep into everything we do, leaving us feeling disconnected from our loved ones and, perhaps more importantly, ourselves. When it comes to weight and body image, shifting the focus from scales and diets to mindful eating, establishing healthy relationships with food, and practicing self-love can move mountains -- both in your life and the lives of loved ones. Think of all the things your body does for you every second of every day. All of your living, working, playing, laughing and loving is done in your incredible body. When that negative and critical voice peeps up in the back of your head, replace its presence with a positive and uplifting truth. Give yourself permission to eat what you love, to move in ways that bring you joy and strength, and to enjoy meals and moments

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with friends and family. Select foods that promote your well-being and move because it makes you feel good and relieves stress. Avoid foods that don’t make you feel your best, and don’t hold yourself to impossible standards or strive for perfection. When choosing what to eat and why, don’t get caught up in counting calories or adhering to restricting diets, and don't associate your self-worth with a number on the scale. The environment, context, and how we feel about eating ultimately have a greater impact on our well-being than any one meal. Living and eating to achieve an unrealistic or arbitrary standard of beauty is costly. It costs money, happiness, and years of your life -- and it robs your body of its natural will to thrive. Living for real well-being -- a state of both mental and physical wellness -- may include the same foods, but not the same restrictions, myths and negative standards. It also may mean your body looks different than how the media tells you it should, but it is thriving nonetheless. So, perhaps you can add one little tweak to your goals at this point in the year. That is to be grateful for the body you have. Make sure your body knows you love it, because every day it carries precious cargo: you. Adrienne Udarbe is the executive director of Pinnacle Prevention, an Arizonabased nonprofit with a mission to inspire and advance healthy food choices and active living across Arizona. Learn more at pinnacleprevention.org.


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May 2018 | greenliving



By David M. Brown


Composting turns trashed food into plant food By Ben Dayton


y wife and I cook a lot at home, and in the process of preparing food we end up with a lot of food scraps -- carrot and avocado skins, eggshells and orange rinds, not to mention the occasional leftovers we let linger in the back of the fridge and forgot to eat. Hey, nobody’s perfect. I’d been throwing these food scraps in the trash for most of my life, until a few years ago when I discovered the wonders of composting. Now, we compost everything we can from the kitchen, and we’ve seen a big reduction in the amount of trash we put out on the curb. It feels good. Perhaps your cooking also creates a lot of food scraps. What do you do with them? Do you, like many people, throw them in the trash? Have you ever wondered where all those trashed food scraps end up?

landfills and incinerators every year. Also, food scraps make up one of the largest portions of the waste stream. But here’s why you should reconsider the habit: When put in the trash, food finds its way to your nearest landfill where it decomposes under anaerobic conditions, creating methane gas in the process. Anaerobic decomposition means your food scraps decompose without the aid of oxygen. This happens to material in a landfill because it gets so compressed by its own weight that all the oxygen (amazingly) gets pushed out. Methane is a much more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. So a city’s worth of food scraps decomposing in a landfill means a whole lot of methane is being produced and released into the atmosphere, which contributes to global warming. Some landfills capture this methane, but the majority do not.

FROM THE TABLE TO THE LANDFILL If you trash your food scraps, you’re not alone. According to Feeding America, approximately 72 billion pounds of perfectly good food -- from every point in the food production cycle -- ends up in

20 greenliving | May 2018

COMPOSING IS THE CURE That’s where composting comes in. It’s one simple way to help reduce greenhouse gases and make good use of your food scraps. It’s


BUSINESS basically recycled food. Composting takes food scraps and transforms them into a nutrientrich soil additive using the natural process of aerobic decomposition (with oxygen). The final product can be added to topsoil in gardens to help plants grow without synthetic fertilizers. Compost is great for gardening in Arizona because it loosens hard soil, allowing roots to take hold more easily and increasing a soil’s capacity to retain water. Many farmer’s markets have booths for dropping off your food scraps for free. The collectors get a material that they can use to make a quality gardening and farming product, and you get the peace of mind knowing you helped reduce waste. It’s a win-win. Some companies, such as Recycled City in Phoenix, will even pick up your food scraps from your home for a small fee. You just have to put out their container like you would your regular trash and recycle! If you’re feeling ambitious, you can compost your food scraps at home in your backyard. It’s a safe and relatively simple process that doesn’t take much effort to get results. You could even ask your neighbors to contribute to your pile. In Arizona, composting is best done in a porous container protected from wildlife. The City of Phoenix offers composting containers constructed from old garbage cans, which can be picked up from a transfer station for just $5. Call the City of Phoenix at 602-262-6251 for more information. Excuses for trashing your food scraps and yard waste are getting slimmer. Why not look into composting today and take useful materials out of the waste stream? Ben Dayton is the content manager at Recyclebank. Recyclebank is a sustainability education program that shares interactive tips for reducing, recycling and reusing household items. Phoenix residents are rewarded for making a positive impact in the community. Sign up at recyclebank.com/ phoenix.

Courtesy of homecompostingmadeeasy.com >>>


Steps to energize enzymes in the pile to break down materials correctly. Keep a 1:2 ratio of green (new, wet, organic matter, that’s high in nitrogen) and brown (dried organic matter, that’s high in carbon) materials. The carbon and nitrogen are consumed by microbes, which break down organic matter. Add dry leaves on top to keep a good ratio going. • Keep pile slightly damp (like a wrung out wet towel) to encourage enzyme activity. • Turn pile once a week to mix ingredients and allow oxygen to reach all areas, and prevent mildew growth. • Measure the pile's temperature periodically to ensure decomposition is happening. The pile should be warm in the center, (130-150 degrees is ideal). • If these parameters are in balance, pile will release a little steam when turned, and smell earthy, indicating you’re on the right track.


• All your vegetable and fruit wastes, (including rinds and cores) even if they are moldy and ugly • Old bread, donuts, cookies, crackers, pizza crust, noodles, anything made out of flour • Grains (cooked or uncooked): rice, barley, you name it • Coffee grounds, tea bags, filters • Fruit or vegetable pulp from juicing • Old spices • Outdated boxed foods from the pantry • Egg shells (crush well) • Corn cobs and husks (cobs breakdown very slowly)


• Meat or meat waste, such as bones, fat, gristle, skin, etc. • Fish or fish waste • Dairy products, such as cheese, butter, cottage cheese yogurt, cream cheese, sour cream, etc. • Grease and oils of any kind


• They inbalance the otherwise nutrient-rich structure of other food and vegetation waste and breakdown slowly. • They attract rodents and other scavenging animals. • Meat attracts maggots. • Your compost bin will smell to holy hell and back!


May 2018 | greenliving


A GARDEN THAT GROWS FOOD FAST A new micro-garden approach may take food scarcity off the table

By Daniel Tweedall


ost of us can choose what our next meal will be, from eating out, to making a home-cooked meal, or even reheating leftovers. Unfortunately, many in this country experience uncertainty about where their next meal will come from. According to Feeding America, the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States, in 2016 an estimated one in eight Americans experienced food insecurity. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) defines food insecurity as a lack of consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life. According to the same 2016 study, 42 million Americans, including 13 million children, experienced food insecurity. That’s why one Indiana-based startup company is making it their goal to end food scarcity in our lifetime.

A NEW SOLUTION TO FOOD INSECURITY Aggressively Organic, a public benefits corporation and intellectual property company focused on agricultural bioscience technology, has created the Micro Growth Chamber System for consumers and community supported agriculture (CSA) models. With both initiatives and more products and programs waiting in the wings, Founder and CEO Jonathan Partlow believes that the company has the freshest, most innovative solution to food insecurity, not just in the U.S., but around the globe. Aggressively Organic’s Micro Growth Chamber Systems provide affordable grow-at-home hydroponic systems that utilize the back-end of the supply chain, which is sustainable harvesting. Since a plant

22 greenliving | May 2018

loses a significant amount of its nutritional value the moment it is harvested, Aggressively Organic encourages users to engage in the “harvest when hungry” method and continue to let the plant grow, providing a continuous source of food. These patent-pending systems support sustainable agricultural food production, using less water, energy and waste. “Plant the seed and watch it grow. It requires very little intervention and effort to grow beautiful and nutritious produce,” said Chris Chick, plant physiologist and chief science officer for Aggressively Organic.

WHERE DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW? Each chamber is personalized for each consumer, allowing plants to grow in a flower-pot-sized cardboard box with its roots sitting in a pod – similar to a K-cup (pods designed for single-cup coffee makers) – and extending into a small bag of water held inside the chamber. The concept is similar to other hydroponic systems, which allow individuals to grow crops year-round in a controlled indoor setting. But one thing is different. Aggressively Organic’s method swaps out typical requirements for hydroponic systems (special lighting, temperature controls and water pumps) for a self-contained box at a fraction of the cost. “We had to create a system that anyone could afford and use,” said Jonathan Partlow. “There are no pumps, no electricity and very minimal plastic.” A normal head of lettuce typically needs about 3.5 gallons of greenlivingaz.com

augmented water to grow, but a head of lettuce in a Micro Growth Chamber only needs 16 ounces. These micro-gardens can grow 365 days per year and only need water every few weeks. Aggressively Organic is continuing to experiment with the types of food it offers, but currently includes lettuce, tomatoes, bok choy, hot peppers, herbs and more. Coined with the name Aggressively Fresh Farms, the CSA models will be set up as a hydroponic growing space, allowing individuals to visit and pick up systems to use at home, and then dropping them back off at the growing space once they’re done. The company is already developing its flagship 40,000-square-foot CSA space in Fishers, Indiana this year and has plans to have additional CSA farms across the country by the end of 2018. The startup, in its first year of operation, is already making strides in the sustainable agricultural industry. Most recently, Aggressively Organic was the first company ever to be named both a Challenge Prize Session winner and People’s Choice winner at this year’s Food+City Challenge Prize competition during South by Southwest (SXSW), winning $10,000 and top recognition among participating supply chain startups. This year’s finalists presented solutions to address issues in our food supply chain, such as food insecurity and food waste. Overall, the company believes that micro-gardens and community supported agriculture initiatives can help solve food insecurity within our lifetime and actively work to support other organizations with the same mission. Together, with enough innovative technology and likeminded experts, this vision is attainable. “Aggressively Organic’s systems truly changed my life. Before using their micro-gardens, I lived an unhealthy lifestyle", said Mike Conk, COO of Agressively Organic. “But their products made it easier to change my eating habits.” Daniel Tweedall is the director of strategic partnerships for Aggressively Organic. If you want your city to be on the list of next possible locations for Aggressively Fresh Farms, or if you want to learn more about creating your own micro-garden, visit aggressivelyorganic.com.


May 2018 | greenliving


Photo from Vince Alfaro



The city of Phoenix once held the dubious distinction of being one of the least sustainable cities in the nation. But Mayor Greg Stanton helped to change that. The Arizona native, who took office in 2011, launched a public transportation plan to increase Phoenix's light rail system, expand public bus services, and create 1,000 miles of new bike lanes within 35 years. Phoenix has also become a leading municipality for solar energy, and the mayor and council passed an initiative to convert all 100,000 city streetlights to LED, which will cut pollution by more than half. In 2017, these and other contributions helped Stanton became the first Arizona mayor to be named "Public Official of the Year" by Governing magazine.

GL: What other aspects of your childhood were related to living green? Your mom composted at home, correct?

Green Living magazine had the pleasure of talking to Stanton about his history with sustainability, successful green initiatives in Arizona, and his future political goals.

GL: Was there a specific time in your life when protecting the environment became a priority?

Green Living: Public transportation is an important part of ecoresponsibility and is clearly an issue you’re heavily invested in. Growing up in Phoenix, did you use the public transit system? Mayor Stanton: I grew up in West Phoenix around 39th Avenue and Dunlap; so for us, using the public bus was a necessity. We were a working-class family and could only afford one car. Using the public transportation system was just a normal part of our upbringing. It was expected. We actually had a better bus system in the 1970s in Phoenix than we do today, in large part because the city was more compact at that time so we didn’t have as many miles of service to cover.

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Mayor Stanton: Yes, she would save all the old eggshells and other things to help her garden grow. We have a composting program around the city, but we just did it inside our own household. I had no idea what the meaning of that was at the time. We didn’t think of it as a sustainability thing, we just grew our own vegetables in our backyard and put them on our own table. During showers we were expected to turn off the water as we cleaned ourselves, then turn it back on. Those were good habits that my mom taught us.

Mayor Stanton: I’ve always tried to be aware of those issues, but certainly when I was lucky enough to have my son Trevor, it put things into perspective. I think we become a little more dedicated to [the world]. In our house, we try to make recycling fun. We encourage our kids, and they encourage us, to be good on recycling issues. GL: What percentage of waste is Phoenix diverting from the landfill? Mayor Stanton: When I started we were at 13 percent, and we’re now at about 30 percent. [Waste diversion] is probably the area where public education is the most important. Just getting people greenlivingaz.com

to understand what can and can't be recycled. Our Resource Innovation Campus gets innovators out on our public works sites to help us figure out what can be diverted. Palm Silage is taking palm frawns out of the landfill and using them for animal feed. Goodwill is getting all the mattresses, and almost all of those parts are recyclable. If we get innovators and entrepreneurs out there side by side, we’re going to come up with lots of other ideas about what can be diverted or reused.

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GL: Congratulations on hitting the 15 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. How did you reach that goal? Mayor Stanton:The greatest thing that’s happened during my time as mayor is the urbanization of our city. Phoenix has invested billions of dollars in improving public transportation, including the light rail. The marketplace has responded beautifully to it; we’ve had $9 billion in investments along the light rail line. In fact, Phoenix, for the first time in decades, is actually increasing in population relative to our neighboring cities. Young people want to live in a more bikeable community or walk to work; they don’t want to live 45 minutes away in a bedroom community. That lifestyle change can have as big of an impact as anything we’ve done.


GL: You were among the first to speak out against the United States’ withdraw from the Paris Agreement. Tell us more about that. Mayor Stanton: I have strong feelings on that. President Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris Agreement has been really bad public policy. First, the substance of it: the United States has to do its part, just like every other nation on Earth, committed to their part in fighting climate change and making sure that the Earth’s temperature levels don’t create incredible challenges for people across this globe. Secondly, when the United States makes a commitment, we have to keep it. That’s what global leadership is. I really believe that the message was sent to the rest of the world that you can’t rely on American leadership – not just in the area of climate change, but that if you reach an agreement with the United States you can’t rely on our commitment, on our word. Mayors across the country, including here in Arizona, are going to up our game and do our part to meet our commitment under [the Paris Agreement], but it’s very difficult to restore that damage. GL: What’s next with your plan to run for Congress? Mayor Stanton: I will be on the ballot in 2018 and there’ll be a special election to replace me [as Phoenix Mayor]. Just as I’ve done as mayor, I want to prioritize infrastructure and infrastructure investment. The United States has fallen behind our competitor nations in that regard. We need to better support cities on the climate change action that they are taking. I want to continue my work supporting and improving relationships with Mexico – you can't be a representative of this area, with the beautiful diversity that we’re lucky enough to have in the Phoenix metro area, without supporting appropriate immigration reform, including the DREAM act. People like me need to step up to the plate and do more. I love public service, and this is an additional opportunity to serve.



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May 2018 | greenliving




write this month’s column on the verge of our fourth birthday. Conscious Connections orchestrates a connected and growing circle that expands the souls and enriches the mindsets of its members – comprised of bright and passionate female business owners and leaders. May marks the anniversary of our public debut; but the truth is, we were born 46 years ago on October 30, 1971. It is only recently that I have come to KRISTI HALL realize this, as the past four years have been the culmination of a life filled with triumph and loss, laughter and tears, and everything in between. What I know for sure now is that everything comes full circle. This is comforting, healing and empowering as I anticipate what is in store for our community as we grow and mature. We are building a global model that is already creating a ripple effect around the world. We plan to replicate our impact and success internationally in the years to come. In honor and service to our growing network of readers and members, here are a few things I have learned in life, business and entrepreneurship.

than me. To quote amazing Conscious Connections and Two Percent Club member Tracy Diziere, “Nothing is created alone.” As I understand and embrace this concept more deeply, I am asking for help and engaging talented leaders, mentors, members, volunteers, sponsors and staff to share their gifts, talents, passions, resources and expertise to help us reach new heights. What started out as “I” has powerfully become “WE.”

NOTHING IS WASTED However this column finds you, in an ebb or flow, feeling challenged or feeling like the world is your oyster, or anywhere in between, I want you to absolutely know that no experience is wasted, and in the end everything contributes to your greatness. I appreciate the triumphs in my life and have very recently come to a place of sincere gratitude for the challenges. The things that have brought me to my knees, the most persistent and heart-breaking struggles of my life – depression and divorce – have been my greatest teachers. They have given me a depth of character, understanding, compassion, wisdom and conviction that make me a better human being, leader and steward of Conscious Connections.

MIRACLES SURROUND YOU LIFE + BUSINESS ARE A TEAM SPORT As an independent, strong-willed, optimistic woman – and recovering lone ranger – I have discovered that life and business are a team support. What started out as an idea delivered to me in meditation is growing into a phenomenon that is immensely bigger

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You get what you focus on. I am not saying we don’t all have challenges and pain at some points in our lives. I am not saying it is not necessary to feel the pain, fear, grief and loss that is a part of being human. However, please don’t dwell there. Feel your feelings, express them with safe and supportive people, shed as many tears as needed greenlivingaz.com

to heal, ask for and accept help, acknowledge fear, and keep moving toward your aspirations. We all have the power to shift our focus and give energy to our dreams, visions, goals and success. I have proven to myself over and over again that a shift in perspective – actually knowing that miracles surround us everyday – welcomes them into our lives in beautiful and unexpected ways.

PRESCOTT, AZ www.friendlypines.com (928) 445-2128 info@friendlypines.com


ALL THAT MATTERS IS NOW I have a huge vision for our future. I am also committed to staying grounded and present and grateful for what is now. It would be cool to have a monthly column in O Magazine, be interviewed on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday, hang out with Richard Branson on his private island, and travel the globe cultivating leaders of Conscious Connections chapters. However, we are already making an impact in our community today. The people who matter to me the most today are the people who are reading, joining us at our live events, becoming engaged members, and participating in our life-changing programs. As John Lennon so eloquently penned, life is what happens while you are making plans. Let’s live for today. We’re having a big birthday bash from 6-9 p.m. Wednesday, May 16, at Starfire Golf Club in Scottsdale. I am going to be sharing more about our love story and what we have in store for our community in the years to come. You are invited. Visit consciousconnectionsglobal. com to learn more and register.


Kristi Hall is an author, speaker and the creator of Conscious Connections, a community for more than 8,000 purpose-based business women. Learn more at consciousconnectionsglobal.com.

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May 2018 | greenliving

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FUTURE STILL GREEN FOR AUTONOMOUS VEHICLES AFTER TEMPE FATALITY But signs say slow down, proceed with caution One person’s death diminishes us, as the poet John Donne wrote; that death may elevate us, too. By David Brown


he recent death of a woman killed by an autonomous vehicle in Tempe, has caused companies throughout the country to put the brakes on testing the technology on the open road. At 10 p.m. on Sunday, March 18, Elaine Herzberg, 49, a woman was struck and killed by an Uber autonomous vehicle traveling northbound on Mill Road in Tempe. A company-owned Volvo XC90 was being used to test self-driving technology and safety driver, Rafael Vasquez, was aboard. Herzberg was walking her bicycle from a median across several dark lanes when the accident occurred. In a video released by the Tempe police, she appears to come out of nowhere. Another video shows Vasquez gazing at her lap. Her hands are not on the wheel of the car which has led some to speculate that she was looking at a mobile device instead of the road. How the robot car runs Robot Car An autonomous, or self-driving, vehicle is designed to function on roadways in a fully automated mode, guided by increasingly sophisticated sensors and scanners without human involvement. Use parallax from multiple images to find the distance to various objects. Cameras also detect traffic lights and signs and help recognize moving objects like pedestrians and bicyclists. Radar sensors measure the distance from the car to obstacles. Constantly spinning, it uses laser beams to generate a 360-degree image of the car’s surroundings. Why the robot car refused to stop is a mystery or just a man-made machine making a mistake, albeit a fatal one.

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The incident is under investigation by the Tempe Police Department while the National Transportation Safety Board is involved in a separate investigation. Both will determine if charges will be filed. The board may issue safety recommendations in the interim, said Peter C. Knudson, a spokesperson for the board. “Tempe and federal partners are investigating the accident, so I look forward to hearing what the experts think occurred in this instance,” said Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell. “Meanwhile, my thoughts are still with Elaine Herzberg’s family and friends.” On March 26, a week after Herzberg’s death, Gov. Doug Ducey ordered Uber to suspend all testing in the state. “Arizona will not tolerate any less than an unequivocal commitment to public safety,” he wrote to Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi at the company’s San Francisco headquarters. “The governor’s action recently to suspend Uber self-driving operations is the strongest taken by any state or governor to date that we are aware of,” said Patrick Ptak, speaking for the governor’s office. “We’re heartbroken by what happened in Tempe, and our cars remain grounded. We continue to cooperate fully with all ongoing investigations at the local, state and federal levels,” said Stephanie Sedlak, spokeswoman for Uber, which voluntarily suspended its autonomous-vehicle tests in Pittsburgh, Toronto and San Francisco. “We recognize our responsibility to contribute to safety in our communities and believe that technology has the power to make transportation safer than ever before,” Sedlak added. “So as we develop self-driving technology, safety is our primary concern every step of the way.”


MOVING FORWARD ON GREEN The governor’s suspension applies only to Uber. Companies that have or are testing autonomous vehicles here in the Valley include GM/Cruise, Ford, and Intel. Another, Waymo, based in Mountain View, California, says it has completed more than 5 million miles on public roads in 25 U.S. cities, including those in metro Phoenix. The company has also completed 5 billion miles in simulation. Los Altos, California-based Toyota Research Institute (TRI) has also temporarily suspended its fully autonomous open road “chauffeur” mode testing in the U.S. “These failures will be extremely rare instances, but at the same time, it was not a bad idea that Arizona decided to slow down or that other places have decided to slow down,” said Alex Salkever, co author, with Vivek Wadhwa, of “The Driver in The Driverless Car: How Our Technology Choices Will Create The Future.” While the road signs now smartly read “caution,” they don’t command “stop.” The potential environmental and other societal benefits of a safely configured and self-monitoring autonomous driving program are clear to all but the most technologically skeptical. Airplanes become safer and computers faster, capable of prodigious tasks from our desktops; medical technologies and procedures save increasingly more lives. Self-driving vehicles will rapidly improve, too, to superhuman capabilities. They will soon easily outdrive the most adept drivers, as computer checkmates chess master. Salkever explains that among the green benefits are less congestion, less auto emissions, and fewer cars, at least in part because those we have will expand their usages and usage time. “In many cities, such as San Francisco and Los Angeles, much of the time people spend in high-density areas is spent circling looking for parking spaces,” said Salkever, noting that leased autonomous cars will not need to park but move on to another function after delivering people to work, home or play and then delivering inventory or consumer goods. Because of this reduction in parking requirements, city layouts become more flexible – making lifestyle enhancements such as parks and recreational areas more prevalent. “This allows us to enhance


density and create more places to live, eat and work: an environmental win,” he said. Should cars become more and more electric as well as autonomous, this will further reduce our dependence on petroleum-based products, such as oils and lubricants, which are not needed in electric vehicles, Salkever points out. Even though electric cars are still dependent on grid-based power, such as coal and natural gas, alternative-energy sources – solar, for example, in the Southwest – will offer a future of autonomous vehicles that are both fully self-operating and sustainable. Making cars is also environmentally intensive, requiring metals, plastics and aluminum. “The coming of autonomous vehicles, at least in theory, may replace a lot of second cars, which, statistically, are used less than an hour a day,” said Salkever. “Over time, in fact, people will not want to own what they don’t need to own, such as CDs and DVDs now. The physical good is better as a service, and that’s good for the environment, too.”

IN HUMANS WE TRUST? But lives are vital, as is the life of the Earth; sustaining life and sustainability are both honorable goals. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), Washington, D.C., in 2016, there were 37,461 deaths in traffic crashes in the United States, up more than 2,000 from the year before. That’s 100 people per day, and 94 percent of these deaths are attributable to human error: driving while intoxicated, texting, cell-phoning, chatting, being upset and other distractions. “People are badly engineered to drive cars,” Salkever said, noting that people are much tougher on machines when they fail. We expect more of them. But perfected self-driving cars can almost eliminate failure, saving thousands and thousands of lives. “The Uber event was tragic, and the caution flags are warranted,” he added, “but over time we will see autonomous vehicles deliver safety and lifestyle and environmental benefits that will change fundamentally how people live throughout the world.” David M. Brown is a Valley-based writer (azwriter.com)

May 2018 | greenliving



Photo by Kanin Routson



rizona’s unique desert landscape is widely celebrated for its distinctive cacti, such as saguaros, agaves and prickly pear. At first glance, the desert appears inhospitable, desolate and lacking in food sources. However, a closer look past those intimidating thorns and needles reveals the desert’s copious bounty. For centuries desert plants and trees have provided food and shelter for the region’s native people, and there’s no reason for today’s inhabitants not to reap the same rewards.

LEAF NETWORK IS CREATED Enter Arizona’s LEAF Network — an acronym for Linking Edible Arizona Forests — formed to help people discover the region’s inconspicuous abundance. Founded in 2012 and expanded with a grant awarded in 2014, the LEAF Network educates Arizonans about the significant benefits of edible trees as well as how to harvest and maintain the trees. These include the native and non-native trees

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that thrive in this region, producing beneficial products for people, wildlife and the environment. “Many people don’t know that in addition to familiar fruit trees, you can also harvest native desert trees,” said Ann Audrey, LEAF’s steering committee chair. The fruits of pomegranate and fig trees are familiar, but mesquite, ironwood and palo verde trees also produce food. Mesquite pods can be ground into flour. Ironwood and palo verde seeds can be eaten green, sprouted, or dried and ground for use in a variety of recipes. These are just a few examples of the many options provided by native edibles.

TWO TREE GROUPS ROOTED IN SIMILAR MISSION The LEAF Network is affiliated with the Arizona Community Tree Council. Working with many partners and collaborators, LEAF has educated thousands of people around Arizona about how to select


appropriate trees, develop sustainable planting sites, and carefully plant and maintain trees over time. The organization also teaches people how to harvest, prepare and preserve the trees’ products. The LEAF Network has compiled a wealth of information about Arizona’s edible trees at its website, making it easy to search for descriptions, photos, illustrations and resources. “Growing Edible Arizona Forests — An Illustrated Guide” is a colorful handbook published to help people get started growing edible trees. The Arizona Edible Tree Directory contains information about 55 edible trees that grow in different regions around the state, from apples in the highlands to citrus that grow in lowlands and everything in between. It provides research on regions that trees grow best in, water needs, size at maturity, harvest seasons, harvesting techniques and much more. The directory also includes information about 35 understory plants — those that grow under tree canopies — that also generate edible produce. To make it convenient, sections of the website, such as the guidebook and directory, are designed for user-friendly, on-demand printing. The website attracts hundreds of visitors each month, an indication that the organization’s efforts provide a valued service to the community. Interest in edible landscapes is evolving into a nationwide phenomenon, according to Audrey. “Planting an edible tree provides the usual tree benefits like shade and shelter and adds the benefits of food, beautiful flowers and a natural meeting place for family, friends and community,” added Audrey. “If you’re going to plant and water a tree, why not choose one you can eat?”

HELPFUL PARTNERS Many LEAF Network partner organizations provide helpful resources to those eager to learn more. For a hands-on approach to gardening and agricultural practices, especially related to the region’s heritage, a visit to Mission Garden might be in order. This 4-acre walled garden, often referred to as Tucson’s birthplace, is located at the base of Sentinel Peak, more commonly known as “A” Mountain. The facility is reviving the region’s rich agricultural history by growing gardens representing 4,000 years of continuous cultivation in the Tucson basin, the longest known history of cultivation in the United States. The Santa Cruz River once flowed past the peak’s base, and Father Kino’s Spanish-colonial Convento and Mission San Agustin were situated nearby, close to the already thriving agricultural community established by Native Americans. The garden features heirloom Sonoran Desert-adapted fruit orchards and vegetable gardens interpreting centuries of agriculture in Tucson. The garden hosts a variety of ongoing workshops and events showcasing culinary and medicinal herbs, harvesting and cooking with cholla buds, and an annual Agave Heritage Festival highlighting prehistoric uses of agave. For those interested in learning about, acquiring and growing heritage trees, Mission Gardens will host a Heritage Tree Sale on May 12. Cuttings propagated from Mission Garden’s collection of trees brought to the region during Father Kino’s Spanish Colonial occupation will be featured. Mission Garden is open 8 a.m. to noon on Saturdays, May through November. Admission is free, donations are encouraged. For more information about these organizations, please visit leafnetworkaz.org and tucsonsbirthplace.org.


May 2018 | greenliving





hat Arizona nonprofit boasts the following goals and objectives: natural resource stewardship, sustainable multiple-use lands, connecting people through nature, and open space preservation? Statewide, many groups come to mind. Yet there is no one right answer in a state blessed with dozens of organizations forcefully DAVID A. SCHALLER advocating for nature and wilderness preservation. Zoom in, though, to the Lakeside-Pinetop area and one group clearly stands out: the White Mountain Nature Center. Connected by trails to the adjacent Big Springs Environmental Study Area, the Nature Center is a gateway to Woodland Lake Park and its 600 acres of protected land in the heart of Pinetop-Lakeside. The acreage is rich with water features like a spring-fed pond and wetlands and yet is not far from a ponderosa pine forest where elk roam.

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HOW IT STARTED Situated on a relatively small parcel of land in the town of Lakeside, the center is now celebrating its 15th year of service interpreting and protecting the natural resource wealth of the White Mountains. The center’s Managing Director Kathy Dahnk tells how founder and past president Mary Ellen Bittorf brought the vision that continues to inspire the all-volunteer organization today. Something must be working, as over 350 volunteers lend operational clout to Bittorf’s vision. As Dahnk recalls, “In the early years, our home was a large tent on a piece of vacant land. When an adjacent building became available we finally had doors we could open.” Bittorf’s vision included space and resources for a wild animal rehabilitation center. Recently, the center has obtained funding necessary to launch a unique animal rehabilitation effort that will take in sick and injured wild animals and care for them until they can be returned to the wild. No other spot in Northern Arizona currently provides this service. The center greenlivingaz.com

has deployed cameras in rehab areas that will allow visitors to follow the animals’ progress on large screen televisions in the Nature Center.

PREPARED FOR THE WILD The center also helps to prepare people for outdoor endeavors; not just in the familiar landscape surrounding the area, but wherever they travel throughout the White Mountains and beyond. Often though, getting folks comfortable with spending time in the wild extends beyond learning how to pitch a tent or developing backcountry trekking skills. Here’s another area where the center is filling a need in the region. “Our volunteer base has grown so that we’re now able to open on Saturdays all summer,” said Dahnk. Some of the Saturday programs offer an array of instructional sessions including honey bees and how they help our food system; beetles and other creepy crawlers (and how to appreciate them at arm’s length); and an introduction to the larger, iconic mammals of the White Mountains such as antelope, bighorn sheep, deer and elk. Each program is intended to make it easier for first timers and repeat visitors to spend time in the wild by helping build familiarity with what people might easily come across once they get there. The center’s website has the dates and details on all these programs and more at whitemountainnaturecenter.org. With 15 years of learning and growing behind it, the White Mountain Nature Center has become one more role model for how a founder’s vision, a strong volunteer base, and effective partnerships can create organizational staying power. The cherished natural resources of the White Mountains enjoy a brighter future as a result. David Schaller is a retired environmental scientist living in Tucson, where he writes on climate, water and energy security.


May 2018 | greenliving


Pure Haven Essentials 100% Toxin Free Skin Care Trusted. Safe. Pure Shop Now www.purehaven.com/nicolephillips

34 greenliving | May 2018



Be the first to test drive the new Volvo XC40 subcompact SUV at our Eco Event. May 16 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Courtesy Volvo of Scottsdale 4001 N. 89th St. Scottsdale 85251


Europeans have a reputation for building large, powerful luxury cars. Unfortunately, these usually come with large gas-guzzling motors that suck up fuel in a hurry. Volvo builds large and compact vehicles and is well respected for both. The XC40, voted European car of the year, is a small SUV that packs a big punch. Pegged as “the younger person's Volvo,” this minimalist design comes in colors like vibrant orange, which aim to shake off the Scandinavian car's sometime stoggy reputation. Volvo is also offering luxury vehicles with plenty of power, yet great fuel economy figures. We received two top-of-the-line models to drive: the S90 sedan and the V90 Cross Country wagon version. Our review will concentrate on the latter. The base price of the V90 is about the same as the S90 sedan at $54,000. As expected, there were luxury options too long to list here, and after the electronic gadgets and Bowers & Wilkins stereo ($3,200!), the total tab came to $65,000.

SMALL MOTOR WITH SUPER POWER A 240 horsepower engine is standard, but the subject of our test is the optional T6 unit. This motor is tiny at only 2 liters, but thanks to a turbocharger, supercharger, and modern fuel injection, over 316 horsepower is generated. It’s enough to propel this 2-ton barge to 60 mph in only 5.6 seconds. Yet even with all-wheel drive, gas mileage is excellent, rated 22 mpg in the city and 30 on the highway. In order to get the real world economy, we drove this car for a week, not only in city commuting, but highway trips between Phoenix and Tucson. Driving this wagon was a pleasure. It offers the same luxury


world as the sedan with a smooth ride, excellent handling, and a cabin swathed in the finest leather trim and other upscale materials. That 330 watt, 10-speaker stereo will spoil you for anything less. All controls for navigation, climate and sound are done on a large computer screen. I prefer simple knobs, so I didn't like this setup, but most consumers like operating a huge version of their smartphone, so this is what we got. The wagon’s rear hatch accommodated lots of camping gear. Fuel economy was 24 mpg in mixed commuting, 38 mpg cruising at 75 mph, and about 32 mpg cruising on back roads at 60 mph. This puts it in the same fuel consumption class as a small economy car.

FUTURE FUEL ECONOMY CARS Want better fuel economy? For 2018 Volvo is introducing a XC90 plug-in hybrid. This will have the same 316 horsepower engine for the front wheels, a powerful electric motor and battery for the rear wheels, for a whopping 400 horsepower output. It will be able to drive on battery alone for up to 19 miles and then switch to hybrid operation for up to 30 mpg. On a 40-mile trip combined, that could result in a 60 mpg figure. The tab is said to be about $100,000! This is the vehicle we wanted to test, but it was not available. Perhaps we’ll get it next time? C. Haire writes reviews of hybrid or gas-saving vehicles for Green Living magazine. He has also reviewed cars for Arizona magazine and newspaper readers and local TV audiences.

May 2018 | greenliving





ave you just met someone fabulous that you would like to get to know better? Treat yourself by making yours and their lives richer. Why not invite them and a few good friends into your home to share a meal? Make it an occasion. This always makes everyone feel special and appreciated. It is a time and an opportunity for quality bonding and strengthening relationships. Your table is where the party takes place. So think about what kind of table setting you want. Would you like a refined, bold, seasonal, whimsical, romantic, simple, eclectic, colorful, beautiful, earthy, artistic or a special occasion setting? You can set a truly scrumptious table by trusting your instincts and personal style and by following a few guidelines:

THE PEOPLE • Start small. Include a couple of your best friends. They will give you confidence and support. If you don't cook, ask your friends to bring a dish or you can buy wonderful prepared food at the grocery store. • Give the occasion a name and a theme. For example, "A Getting To Know You Better" luncheon or a "Wild and Wonderful" dinner. Encourage each person to bring a quote about what friendship means to them or whatever topic is relevant to the occasion. Ask each guest to share their quote during the meal.

36 greenliving | May 2018

• Seat the most important guest on your right. • Always use place cards. Write the name of the guest in large script with a Sharpie. I write the guest's name on the front and on the back so that the guests’ names can be read (and remembered) from across the table. • Write a different question on the inside of each place card. Nothing too personal. For example, "What is your fondest memory? What makes you happy?" Go around the table and make sure that everyone answers their question.

THE PLACE SETTING • Use a runner, tablecloth or placemats (or all three together). If you don't have a tablecloth, a floral or printed sheet can look beautiful. You can also buy attractive and inexpensive placemats. • Charger plates at each place setting add importance and interest. • Use your imagination by mixing and combining different objects from around your home. Your guests will see a more personal side of you. Be a little adventurous. • Keep in mind, everything doesn't have to match. You can use different glasses, flatware, plates and a variety of colored napkins. These will add interest. • Fresh flowers, herbs, vegetables, fruit and cactus can be placed throughout the table. Be sure they have been washed in cold water greenlivingaz.com

WILDLIFE and towel-dried before being placed on the table. A variety of colors and fragrance will create a warm and inviting atmosphere. Keep your centerpiece low so that your guests can see each other easily. • Candles are a great way to make a bold statement. Placed strategically near shiny objects, they will cast off a warm glow and create a sparkle. Numerous candles make a table seem friendlier. Choose unscented and battery-operated candles, if you wish. • Use stemmed or large, attractive water glasses or combine both. Have a large pitcher of ice water (very cold) and refill your guests’ glasses often. This is very important.

THE PURPOSE Bring laughter, joy and delicious happiness into your life by inviting people into your home and setting a truly scrumptious table. Delight and surprise yourself and others. Enjoy!

GAZPACHO Soup Recipe • 2 medium cucumbers, • halved and seeded, but not peeled • 3 red bell peppers, cored and seeded • 9 Roma tomatoes • 2 red onions • 5 minced garlic cloves • 46 ounces tomato juice (6 cups) • 1/2 cup white wine vinegar • 1/2 cup olive oil • 1 tablespoon kosher salt • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons black pepper • 1/2 teaspoon Lowry's garlic salt

Patsy Lowry is a third generation Phoenician who has been hosting memorable lunch and dinner parties in Paradise Valley for more than a half a century. She is known for her colorful table settings and the special spirit she creates while connecting people in her home. Guests are always delighted to be invited to a Patsy-party party and leave her home feeling full from the fabulous food and newly found friendships. Lowry is currently writing a book called “Truly Scrumptious! It’s to Dine For!”


Roughly chop the cucumbers, bell peppers, tomatoes and red onions into small cubes. Put each vegetable separately into a food processor. Mix until coarsely chopped. Do not over mix. Combine all vegetables into a large bowl and add remaining ingredients. Mix well and chill for at least 3 hours before serving. Put soup bowls in freezer. Take out just before serving. Serve cut up avocados and green onions for garnish. Delicious and healthy!!!!!!!! May 2018 | greenliving




ost people would be hard pressed to find anything positive to say about packrats or anything for that matter with the word rat attached to it. But believe it or not, you can start with their name. Who wouldn’t rather be referred to as a packrat as opposed to a hoarder? Here are a few more.

know why they collect, they just do. Shiny objects, small toys, money and human trash all make their way into packrat houses. They are the original curators of our desert.


Packrats are adorably adorned with large sympathetic eyes and ears comically larger than their faces. Wiggly whiskers and a soft, furry body complete their look. Why do they look so darn cute? Typically, when animals display larger-than-life features, humans find that facial ratio delightful. That’s why we are hard-wired to be enamored with human and animal babies. Who can resist these fuzzy furballs with their enlarged nocturnal adaptations?

Packrats conserve so much water that their urine is thick and viscous, like syrup. They use this to pee all over their possessions, which creates a midden (think of insects trapped in amber). By dissecting middens, researchers were able to identify plants, animal parts and pollen fragments, giving us a timeline of Tucson’s ecology over thousands of years. In fact, due to packrats, researchers have discovered that the climate of the Tucson Basin has changed drastically in just a short time. Did you know saguaros have only been in this area for 8,000 years? Thank a packrat for that fun fact.



Packrats live sustainably by absorbing all available water solely from what they ingest! Packrats feed on juicy succulents and can avoid cactus spines easily while feasting on prickly pear pads. No need for a constant water supply -- these rodents have wise water use down.

Humans get to enjoy unique challenges when living near packrats. Our coexistence isn’t always pleasant, but what ingenuity packrats inspire! Without packrats, would we know to light up a truck’s engine at night or how to rodent-proof an AC unit? If you’ve ever enjoyed finding creative solutions or have become an inventor yourself, thank a packrat.


THEY’RE ADMIRABLE ARCHITECTS Packrats build homes of sticks, plants parts and existing cactus patches. They guard it with barriers of cholla joints and animal poop. Sometimes packrats build homes underneath rocky outcroppings that are protected from the elements. Packrat houses are so well constructed that some have been continuously occupied for thousands of years by multiple generations of packrats.

THEY’RE A KEYSTONE SPECIES Packrats are vital to a healthy desert ecosystem. By collecting plant parts and moving cactus around, they create new plants started by being seed dispersers. New growth in the desert habitat can be attributed to these industrious animals. Their houses can also be homes for many other organisms including desert spiny lizards, tortoises, snakes and a plethora of invertebrates. In fact, where you find packrats, the biodiversity of animals in the region is greater than it would be without them.

THEY’RE COLLECTORS Packrats are famous for collecting objects. Wildlife biologists don’t

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THEY’RE A VITAL FOOD SOURCE Have you pointed a camera trap at a water dish and been delighted to record a bobcat mother with kittens? Well, those cute cats likely enjoyed a squeaky snack that night. Everything in the food web plays an important role; thus, if you appreciate owls, gopher and king snakes, bobcats or coyotes, remember their food source is important to maintain. For this reason, the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum recommends never poisoning rodents. A poisoned rodent could get into the belly of a beloved pet, bobcat, owl or snake and seriously harm them. Want to play like a packrat? You’re in luck! Packrat Playhouse: Hidden in the Midden is a new exhibit at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum where kids of all ages can climb through prickly pear, slide down cholla, play collecting games, and learn about these fascinating animals in an indoor (air conditioned) space. Catherine Bartlett is an education specialist at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum in Tucson.


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May 2018 | greenliving


GLUTEN FREE FRENCH TOAST RECIPE: INGREDIENTS: • 8 thick slices of your favorite gluten-free bread • 4 beaten eggs • 2/3 – 3/4 cup coconut milk • 1 teaspoon brown sugar • ¼ tsp. cinnamon • ¼ tsp. nutmeg • Pinch salt (optional) • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract • Vegetable oil for frying • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar for dusting

Have a favorite recipe? Email it to me at dolores@greenlivingaz.com We might use it in the book.

DIRECTIONS Preheat a large, heavy skillet on medium heat. Combine the eggs, coconut milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and vanilla in a shallow bowl and whisk until thoroughly blended. Dip slices of homemade breakfast bread into the egg mixture. The bread will act as a sponge and soak up the egg mixture. Let it sit and soak up the mixture for a minute on each side. Add the oil to the preheated skillet. Add as many slices of bread that will comfortably fit into the skillet. As soon as one side begins to get golden brown, carefully flip it over and fry the other side. This may take as short as 1 minute or as long as a couple minutes – just be sure to keep a watchful eye on your French toast. Remove each slice to plates and serve immediately with a dusting of powdered sugar on each slice. Enjoy this gluten free French toast plain, with butter and syrup or just some fruit topping. 40 greenliving | May 2018


GLUTEN FREE WAFFLE RECIPE: INGREDIENTS: • 1 cup of water • 1 cup of gluten free waffle mix • 1/8 cup melted butter • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar for dusting DIRECTIONS Preheat a waffle iron. Combine water, gluten free waffle mix and melted butter in a shallow bowl and whisk until thoroughly blended. Pour the batter on the iron until cooked thoroughly. Remove the waffle to plates and serve immediately with a dusting of powdered sugar on each slice. Enjoy with butter and syrup or fruit topping.


May 2018 | greenliving




Book review: “The Grumpy Gardener: An A to Z Guide from the Galaxy's Most Irritable Green Thumb” by Steve Bender (Oxmoor House, $15.07 Barnes & Noble) Normally, you’d never allow it. Holes in your yard? No way! Trenches near your garage? Nuh-uh. The exception comes in the spring, when you start thinking about hostas in those holes, tomatoes in the trenches, daisies in the divots. Oh, how you love a garden, and with “The Grumpy Gardener” by Steve Bender, you’ll get a shovelful of ideas. Larry, Mary, Geri, quite contrary, how does your garden grow? If you’re frowning now, remember that even the most dedicated, experienced gardener has a dud now and then -- but there are ways to minimize that. Steve Bender has ideas. The first thing you’ll want to know is your zone, which is not at all new-agey. Growing zones are delineated areas that indicate average low winter temperatures. Knowing this helps to decide which plants will thrive and which will die in your area. On that last note, you’ll find the “Grumpy” in “Grumpy Gardener.” There are many garden and landscape plants that Bender wishes would just die. In the book, you’ll find a list of the five most awful plants; reasons why you don’t want a river birch, cottonwood, or weeping willow in your yard; and why you should never move next door to someone who adores bamboo. If you hate critters in your garden, learn what bulbs they won’t eat, what they like, and how to get rid of pests altogether. Read how to use a chainsaw the Grumpy way, and how to get your plants ready for winter. Find a way to love dandelions and know what not to plant if you have pets. Teach your teens to grow kale, then send them to college with plants that thrive on neglect. Scratch the surface on poison ivy mythology; see why sycamore trees are good if you’re a kid; and learn why kudzu could become more than just a weed someday.

42 greenliving | May 2018

Get useful lawn ideas, tips on fertilizer use, mulches to avoid, and organic methods to embrace. And finally, relax, says Bender. A dying plant is God’s way of telling you to try again. Will silver bells or cockle shells grace your yard this year, or do you struggle to keep the lawn green? Either way, you can’t help but laugh about it when you put “The Grumpy Gardener” between those greenish-brown thumbs. Don’t think this book is all sunshine and geraniums, however. There’s humor inside this book, but Bender is serious about gardening, planting, and caring for greenery. The advice you’ll get is sound and useful, including sidebars in a Q-and-A format and chapters on things that may hardly seem garden-related until you need to know them. Also helpful is when the author recommends alternatives – what to grow, for instance, if your Minnesota rhubarb hates Texas climate – and better ideas to make your garden glow. Though much of this book is set in Zone 8 (the South), there’s still plenty of advice and a few challenges for Northern, Central and Western gardeners. If that’s you and you’re itching to plant, get “The Grumpy Gardener.” You’ll really dig it. The Bookworm is Terri Schlichenmeyer. Schlichenmeyer has been reading since she was three and never goes anywhere without a book. She lives in Wisconsin with her accomplice, two dogs, and 15,000 books.


GR EEN C HAM PIO N S Each month in our Green Champions section, we feature three people -- one each in northern, central and southern Arizona -- who are making strides in the green community. In this issue, we’re celebrating three people who work to educate and protect the public by fostering environmental awareness.


Moran Henn joined Willow Bend Environmental Education Center in Flagstaff in 2015, and today she is its executive director. The mission of Willow Bend is educate people about environmental issues and help to make them stewards of the planet. The center offers workshops and guided tours for children, adults and schools. Classes offered include the basics of wildlife tracking, mushroom identification, primitive skills and more. Henn, a Flagstaff resident and mother of two adventurous girls, received a bachelor’s degree in Conservation Biology and Outdoor Recreation Tourism from the University of Idaho and a master’s in Environmental Sciences and Policy from NAU. WillowBendCenter.org, Moran@WillowBendCenter.org


After her son, Matthew, was diagnosed with Stage 3 Pediatric Cancer, Kayleigh Wall and her entire family underwent a complete life transition. They created a healthy and healing environment for him and they all benefited from the change. They then created EMF Essentials which offers home assessments to measure a variety of EMF radiation sources and implements strategies to successfully shield from these sources and create healthy environments. They also offer Skype consultations and pre-home purchase inspections. www.emfessentials.com, info@EMFessentials.com


Elizabeth Smith is the executive director of Community Gardens of Tucson and the founder of WeLoveToGrow.org, a website for people who love to grow flowers, fruits, and vegetables and their knowledge of gardening. Smith offers workshops for everything from how to successfully grow veggies in the challenging Sonoran desert climate to growing organic tomatoes. She even teaches people how to raise their own earthworms to improve the quality of their soil. Smith has been planting and gardening since the age of eight and continues to this day. Her love of the Earth and gardening has helped Elizabeth earn a fitting nickname -- one of her godchildren calls her Mother Nature. Email: WeLoveToGrow.org, WeLoveToGrow@gmail.com

Want to nominate someone as a Green Champion? Email your candidate to editor@greenlivingaz.com! greenlivingaz.com

May 2018 | greenliving




May 3

May 12

May 17



Enjoy wild exhibits and trails while drinking different craft beers. There will be a variety of food and drinks to purchase while exploring the thrills of the zoo. From 5:30-8:30 p.m. at the Phoenix Zoo, 455 North Galvin Parkway, Phoenix. Buy advance tickets and get more information at phoenixzoo.org.

Join in the fun of bonding, learning, being inspired and being uplifted! This event is for women of all ages and interests. Whether it’s fashion, makeup, health or home, the expo has something for everyone. Located at the Mesa Convention Center, 263 N. Center St., Mesa. Visit womenshealthandbeautyexpo.com for tickets and more information.

CORTNEY’S PLACE - CHEERS TO FUTURE YEARS Cortney’s Place presents our 2nd Annual Cheers to Future Years with Scottsdale Beer Company. This night will be filled with awareness, acceptance, and respect for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. From 5-10 p.m., Scottsdale Beer Company, 8608 E. Shea Blvd., Scottsdale. Visit eventbrite.com for more details and to purchase your tickets.

May 26 CREATE-A-THON, HACKATHON, MAKEA-THON & SOCIAL ENTREPRENEUR STARTUPS Come share your innovative ideas and get feedback from an already up-and-running community project program. Or help volunteer at an organization you believe in. From noon-4:30 p.m., Mesa Main Library, 64 E. 1st St., Mesa. Register and find more information at eventbrite.com.

May 9 WALKPHX WEDNESDAYS FitPHX started this event to help people stay fit and healthy while enjoying Downtown Phoenix. The route focuses on beautiful and historic sites that may be missed while driving, such as Taylor Place, Arizona Center and more. From 5:15-7 p.m. at Margaret T. Hance Park, 67 W. Culver St., Phoenix. Register at eventbrite.com.

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May 17 FUND THE FARM Celebrate the agricultural roots of south Phoenix through the work of Spaces of Opportunity at Fund the Farm. Progress is being made to build this thriving food oasis, including a farmers market, community farming and volunteer opportunities. Our ticket purchase supports the construction of a farmers market. From 7-9 p.m. at Desert Botanical Gardens, 1201 N. Galvin Parkway, Phoenix. Visit dbg. org for more information.







May 1-May 6

May 5



Experience the multifaceted agave plant at this 21-and-over festival in Tucson. Featuring a handful of exhibits, talks, tastings, dinners and tours, this event showcases the culinary, commercial and cultural significance of the Arizona-Mexico border region. Time and location varies depending on day of attendance. Visit agaveheritagefestival.com for more info.

Enjoy the works of Vivaldi in the open-air amphitheater at Arcosanti. The experience includes Flamenco dancers and the play “The Rehearsal.” Dinner will be served before the performance at an additional cost. The event is held 6-9:30 p.m. at Arcosanti, 13555 South Cross L Road, Mayer. Register at www.eventbrite.com.

Join USGBC and learn more about Total Resource Use and Efficiency (TRUE). Hear about their new programs, the requirements for TRUE Zero Waste certification program, the benefits of this program for facilities, and the differences between LEED and TRUE. From 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.,Okland Construction, 1700 N. McClintock Drive, Tempe. Register at usgbc.org.

May 18-20 WEEKENDZONA: ELEMENTS OF CAMP VERDE - AN OUTDOOR ESCAPE Experience Camp Verde with a weekend-long all-inclusive tour including great food, kayaking, horseback riding and stargazing. Referred to as “Arizona’s best-kept little secret,” Camp Verde will dazzle you with wine tastings, shopping and beautiful scenery. From 2 p.m. May 18 through 4 p.m. May 20 in Camp Verde. Buy tickets at localfirstaz.com.

May 10

May 5


EDIBLE LANDSCAPES TOUR Explore plants and food-bearing trees native to the Sonoran Desert on the University of Arizona Campus Arboretum campus landscape. Starting at 8:30 a.m. Visit arboretum.arizona.edu/tours/ediblelandscapes-tour for more info.

May 11 MT. LEMMON HILL CLIMB Enjoy a striking 100-mile bike ride on closed roads through Mt. Lemmon Scenic Byway. It happens to be one of the most vigorous hill climbs in the country and great training for professional cyclists. From 6 a.m.-2 p.m. Register and find more information at bikegaba.org.


May 27 ETHNOBOTANY OF SEDONA GUIDED HIKE Curious about the wildlife that’s around you during your morning hike? The Ethnobotany of Sedona Guided Hike is exactly where you want to be. The volunteer guides explain how the native trees and plants have interacted with people from the pioneers to modern times. From 1-4:30 p.m., Red Rock State Park, 4050 Red Rock Loop Road, Sedona. Visit azstateparks.com for more details.

Join USGBC on a tour of Navarro Groves and learn about the LEED certification process and how Navarro Groves succeeded in getting theirs plus an Energy Star certification. You’ll also hear how different teams got their LEED certification. From 4:30-6 p.m. at Navarro Groves on 32nd Street and Highline Canal. Register at usgbc.org.

May 15 MAY GREEN DRINKS Join the Arizona Green Chamber of Commerce to mingle and network with like-minded people. Learn how to integrate nature with building design. The event is 5:30-7 p.m., 3443 N. Central Ave., Phoenix. Register at azgreenchamber.org.

May 2018 | greenliving






Eminence Lavender Age Corrective Night Eye Cream is a nourishing PA-rich eye cream that helps diminish signs of aging overnight. And isn’t that what the mature crowd is looking for? The argan stem cell fights the appearance of crow’s feet leaving skin radiant and smooth. Add the scent of lavender to that and how can you possibly go wrong? The Eminence Organic Skin Care line is produced with plants from the company’s ingredient farm in Hungary. Available at Agave, the Arizona Spa at the Westin Kierland Resort & Spa. Priced from: $75 for 1.05 ounces. Info: KIERLANDRESORT. COM/AGAVE-SCOTTSDALE-SPA/ or EMINENCEORGANICS.COM



The YES Bar was created by L.A. mom Abigail Wald, who was tired of always having to say “no” to the snacks her foodsensitive son wanted. Out of love, she created a bar she could say yes to anytime he wanted to eat it. The YES Bar is a gluten-free and paleofriendly treat that looks and tastes like a cookie, but has the nutritional value of a healthy snack that won’t leave kids craving sugar! Try it in macadamia chocolate, mocha cayenne and strawberry coconut flavor. Priced from $3.50 per bar. Info: THEYESBAR.COM





Does your mom still have your first T-shirt or has she stashed away your winning soccer jersey? Have Scottsdalebased MCA (Multi Colored Animals) transform it into a custom headband for Mother’s Day. Bands can be used for yoga, sports and more. The adjustable bands come in 1.5- and 2-inch widths. Priced from $15. Info: MCA.COM

Panda combines fashion with sustainability and charity. Their watches are made of sustainable cork and bamboo and a fashion statement makes even more of an impact because each purchase supports Pencils of Promise, an organization dedicated to building schools and educational programs in underserved communities. Panda watches make a practical gift that helps someone in need. Priced from $160. Info: WEARPANDA.COM



Who hasn’t purchased fresh vegetables with the intentions of eating healthy only to find them weeks later shriveled up in the back of the fridge? VeggiDome can help save your vegetables and your money. The glass bio-dome balances humidity and vents the natural ethylene gas that contribute to spoilage, keeping raw produce visible for instant snacking, juicing and for recipes. Priced from $69.99. VEGGIDOME.COM

46 greenliving | May 2018




COLD BREW COFFEE Product reviews by our eco-conscious couple John and Jennifer Burkhart


It's hot outside, you're in zombie-mode, but you have to adult today. With a dizzying array of chilled caffeinated choices in the grocery store, how do you pick? As die-hard coffee fans, we started with cold-brews containing the latest trendy and organic ingredients claiming to boost your energy and focus. Hope these reviews help you choose! While you're at it, grab Mom one too. She'll appreciate it since she's been in zombie-mode almost all of your young life!




COLD-BREW COFFEE BLEND HE SAID: Yum! I enjoyed this iced chai cold brew immensely. It reminded me a lot of a ginger chai recipe my grandfather brought back from India. Sweet black tea and cardamom flavor up front with a spicy ginger bite and a smooth coffee finish. Its no doubt an acquired taste, but luckily one I acquired long ago.

SHE SAID: I've always enjoyed a hot dirty chai (Really, it's a thing! And not as dirty as it sounds.), and this is very similar, but cold, obviously. This creamy, SPICY blend will be sure to wake you up! Flavors galore! I was shocked at the strong ginger flavor, which stung my throat a bit. I'll stick to the more mild (Americanized?) Chai teas.

REBBL : ORGANIC COLD-BREW COFFEE VANILLA & MACA, DAIRY-FREE, USDA ORGANIC HE SAID: This one is a good way to drink maca root, and a bad way to drink coffee. I'd guess this one is a light or medium roast by the fruity coffee taste. The MCT oil adds a strong coconut flavor. Coconut fruit coffee, sounds great right? Well in comes the maca root extract, an incredibly earthy taste with a malty finish... so yeah, dirty baked goods flavor. Not awful, just unique.

HE SAID: I'm not kidding when I say this cold-brew had a downright sour taste. I went and double checked the expiration date after my first sip. It had that viscous texture that's to be expected in a butter coffee drink. It really doesn't even resemble coffee other than the aftertaste. This one is probably really good for you, but I don't think I could drink a whole one.

SHE SAID: Ugh, what did I just drink?? First, this is UNSWEETENED, which was shockingly obvious straight away. Second, it tasted like sour water. But then magically, that smooth roasted coffee flavor shows up like two years later, and it was yummy! Please, make it taste like that the whole time.

PICNIK : BUTTER COFFEE SHE SAID: I love coffee, and I'm intrigued by the popular “healthy” add-ins and how they jive with the java. This one missed the mark. Maca, MCT, stevia, coconut sugar and non-dairy to boot - sure sounds like a solid attempt at a “healthy” coffee, but it tasted bitter and sour.

CHAMELEON : ORGANIC COLD-BREW COFFEE VANILLA, USDA ORGANIC HE SAID Not much to write about here. This one was a pretty average bottle of cold brew coffee. It was noticeably smoother than other cold brews I've tried. The vanilla flavoring helped with that I'm sure. It didn't change color or anything like that...ahem, Chameleon. It'd be a lot cooler if it did.

SHE SAID: Here's a back-to-basics option in a nice little glass bottle. Water, coffee, sugar and natural flavors (vanilla). While I do prefer a sweeter, creamier coffee drink, this was still acceptable. I would pick it if I needed a buzz while trying to reduce calories (only 40 per bottle) or on my way to drinking black coffee (never gonna happen).


MOCHA LATTE HE SAID: There's one major problem with this Picnik cold brew. The bottles not big enough! This was smooth and silky and had a delicious mocha coffee flavor. I could drink this everyday. I'd probably weigh 900 pounds if I did, but it would be worth it!

SHE SAID: At 310 calories per bottle and 10 grams of protein, this was more of a snack than a beverage. But whoa, was it tasty! Just a smooth, balanced treat that was lightly sweet (maple syrup) and chocolatey. And I couldn't taste the butter, yay!

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