What is Sustainable Forestry Certification? PDF Print E-mail
Written by Lisa Alexander   
Wednesday, 01 August 2007 12:38

Many people would think that natural wood is a green product. For the most part they would be correct. By today’s standards however, unless a product is certified as coming from a sustainable forest, it may not be very green at all.

Traditional forestry practices often destroy and upset the natural balance of our woodlands. “Managed” forests often become monocultures where just one tree species is planted, like a Southern Yellow Pine that grows quickly. In these “managed forests”, or tree farms, extensive use of herbicides and pesticides are used to actually kill off other species of trees that try to grow in the forest. This does not provide the varied natural habitat needed for other plant, insect and animal species to grow and survive.

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Bye-Bye Mini Mansion PDF Print E-mail
Written by Lisa Alexander   

Every decade since WWII we saw a different style of house being built.  In the 1950’s we saw the Cape Cods and the planned communities of Levittown.  In the 60’s it was the one story three-bedroom ranch.   In the 70’s we saw the funky split-levels and the bi-levels.  In the 80’s it was the large Colonials, and since the 1990’s we got larger still with the mini-mansions or McMansions as they are also referred to.

The days of the oversized, wasteful and expensive mini-mansions are coming to an end. The spawn of the ever-increasing home size was driven by an advancing economy and the growth process of the baby boomers.  As the double income baby boomers advanced in their careers and age and made more and more money they bought more things and needed room to keep them these things.

As the boomers now are entering their retirement years they are starting to get rid of the “things” that cost them money, time and maintenance for stuff they hardly use anymore.   This includes their over-sized, expensive energy guzzling homes.

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Damn Ice or Ice Dam PDF Print E-mail
Written by Lisa Alexander   

IciclesIt’s been a long, cold winter….19 straight days below freezing in January.  What a way to start the New Year.  All the snow, wind and ice did however create a picturesque winter wonderland in Northeastern Pennsylvania.  Driving through the countryside was like driving through a living Currier & Ives painting.  Snow covered fields and forests, frozen ponds and lakes, and icicles dangling from the pretty county cottages. As beautiful as that all sounds, those icicles on your house actually means you may have some problems.

When snow melts over the heated portion of your house, water runs down the roof and freezes again at the eaves forming an ice dam.  The pretty icicles that hang from your roof are evidence of this.  Like a real dam, it will hold back water, trapping run off.  Eventually the water will back up under the shingles, which can damage your roof, and the water penetration can cause structural damage to your house. Unfortunately, once these “dam icicles” form you really can’t do much about them until the warmer weather comes along to melt the ice dams.

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