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July: Embrace the Power of Sun and Rain

July 3, 2014

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In the outdoor garden, your plants get their energy largely from the elements: sun and rain.  Both are powerful, and you need the right amounts of sunlight and water for a successful garden.  While we can’t control the weather, we can harness the power of the sun and rain to help us.  Turning on the faucet or the oven indoors uses energy, which is largely produced from fossil fuels- non-renewable resources whose use often pollutes the earth.  So whenever possible, it’s great to use the sun or rain instead- to cook, water, or dry.

Follow the July challenges below to embrace the power of sun and rain.  When you do, snap a photo and let us know.  Submitted challenges count towards admission to a free celebration at Phipps Conservatory, and entry into this month’s drawing for four free passes to Phipps!

TASTE: Cook with the sun.

Brew sun tea, or make and cook with a solar oven.

GARDEN: Use a rain gauge to measure rainfall in your garden.

You can purchase a rain gauge, or make one at home.  Try recording the rainfall your garden gets for a week, and use the information to water accordingly.

VISIT: Attend a rain barrel workshop and/or install one at your home.

MAKE: Set up a clothesline, and use it to dry clothes instead of your dryer.

Using a clothesline saves energy and money!  Place your line in the shade, to keep colors from fading.


Have another idea?  If you have an idea for a different activity, or you want to take it a step further, go ahead!  Just send us a description and photo, and if it relates to the theme we’ll count it.

All submissions should be sent to, and include a photo, your name, and the challenge(s) you completed.


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