The Greeks knew it takes a thief to catch a thief. Today, taking a page from the ancients, scientists at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University are using one foreigner to combat another, but in this case it’s fauna against flora. The target: swallow-wort, or Vincetoxicum nigrum or V. rossicum, a weed that is no stranger (or friend) to city gardeners or country strollers. Cambridge, in fact, distributes flyers asking residents to yank the seed pods when they see them; in woodsier suburbs, whole trees can be swamped with the climber.
Calling all broken toys, computers, lamps and more -- the next Jamaica Plain Fixit Clinic is September 14. The clinic is great way to stop things from being tossed into the landfill. Just bring your broken household items with any manuals (if you still got them), and a willingness to learn. Tools and volunteer coaches will provide their knowledge to help fix a variety of things. Bikes and skateboards, clothing and fabric items, computers and phones, toys and wooden items, small kitchen appliances, small electrical devices, jewelry, lamps and a lot more.
Members of the Jamaica Plain chapter of Mothers Out Front recently came together at a large natural gas leak to protest the dangerousness of gas leaks and the ineptness of gas company, National Grid. "National Grid agreed to address large volume leaks but aren't keeping their promise, on our health, our dime and our kids' future," said Claire Humphrey. The mothers started off at the Curtis Hall Community Center on July 25, and then went to a large gas leak across from the Pine Village Preschool on South Street. The organization called on National Grid to honor their 2017 commitment to fix large gas leaks as part of the company's shared action plan with Columbia Gas, Eversource, Home Energy Efficiency Team, and more. Since then, National Grid has not fulfilled their commitment, said Mothers Out Front.
While talk about sustainability often comes in the form of discussions about steel straws and reusable tote bags, there are lots of larger scale initiatives looking to promote sustainability and fight the effects of climate change. One such initiative is the Arnold Arboretum's installation of 1,000-plus solar panels. Video Courtesy of the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University
The Arnold Arboretum began operations in 1872 after Harvard alumni became trustees as part of James Arnold’s estate. The arboretum has since become a pioneer in research and ecology education, and is also home to 15,000 plants, with most species hailing from North America and Asia, according to the Arnold Arboretum's website. Research and education also remain a top priority for the arboretum.