Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Sustainable Stuff can be very Practical

I just came across a new word, for me, and a new idea. Arborsculpture. Richard Reames, an arborsculpturer, has written a book about the subject. Arborsculpture is the process of shaping growing plants into usable objects such as chairs, table surfaces, hedges to make rooms, etc. There is a history of such practices in the book, a history related to Bonsai, and it goes back centuries. Who knew?

The book is Arborsculpter: Solutions for a Small Planet by Richard Reames (Arborsmith Studios)

I discovered this idea in Utne, March-April 2006 issue.

I also came across this word: biomedia. I think it is what a tree sculptured for use by man would either be or become. This word belongs in lists that contain the word bioremediation, using living organisms to clean up waste or fix problems. Both words go with sustainability and sustainable solutions, wouldn't you say?

This month's Utne also mentioned other biomedia: plastic bottles made from corn and a veggie-leather totebag sold at the Utne store . I offer this to you not so much as an advertisement but as an exploration into practical sustainability.

I do have to ask, because I do not approve of illegal drugs, is the hemp used for rope and cloth really never usable for smoking? Does support of the hemp industry not support the growing of marijuana? Will someone please explain the relationship of these two products to me.


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