The Crockpot: A Weekly Link-Digest
A diamond is a girls’ best friend—because that’s what the diamond industry has decided.
Ten ironic ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day.  Example A: “Wait in the park, and when couples pass by in horse-drawn  carriages, spatter them with glue, yelling, ‘No one cares where last year’s horse went, do they?!’”
Illegal baby names from around the world.
“You are an idiot and a disgrace.” The Believer writes about the flood of outrage that is the result of saying absolutely anything on the internet.
Be inspired by this story of an actress who was propositioned by a famous casting director. When she refused to sleep with him,  he told her “You’re never going to get anywhere in this business. You  should go home and marry a Jewish dentist.” (Hint: She got somewhere.)
Is godlessness is the last big taboo in the US?
French parenting is like French cooking: It comes in smaller portions.
Could cyber-gardening be the new urban-gardening?
Factory farming is creating a new breed of hellacious superbugs.
On the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens’ birth, Slackbridge, Gradgrind, and Jarndyce still have something to say about contemporary society and politics.
Manufacturers have found a new way to appeal to eco-friendly consumers: Brown it.

The Crockpot: A Weekly Link-Digest

  • A diamond is a girls’ best friend—because that’s what the diamond industry has decided.
  • Ten ironic ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Example A: “Wait in the park, and when couples pass by in horse-drawn carriages, spatter them with glue, yelling, ‘No one cares where last year’s horse went, do they?!’”
  • Illegal baby names from around the world.
  • “You are an idiot and a disgrace.” The Believer writes about the flood of outrage that is the result of saying absolutely anything on the internet.
  • Be inspired by this story of an actress who was propositioned by a famous casting director. When she refused to sleep with him, he told her “You’re never going to get anywhere in this business. You should go home and marry a Jewish dentist.” (Hint: She got somewhere.)
  • Is godlessness is the last big taboo in the US?
  • French parenting is like French cooking: It comes in smaller portions.
  • Could cyber-gardening be the new urban-gardening?
  • Factory farming is creating a new breed of hellacious superbugs.
  • On the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens’ birth, Slackbridge, Gradgrind, and Jarndyce still have something to say about contemporary society and politics.
  • Manufacturers have found a new way to appeal to eco-friendly consumers: Brown it.

(via Designboom)

"The Patient Gardener" [is] a structure consisting of ten Japanese cheery trees which is the main building material of two-story retreat. Bending, twisting, pruning and grafting will be used to control and develop the growth of the building over time.

The biggest pumpkin ever grown weighed 1,810.5 pounds. It was planted in  the spring of 2010 and cultivated through the summer by Chris Stevens, a  pumpkin enthusiast and cross-breeder extraordinaire, from New Richmond,  Wisconsin. Stevens’ gargantuan gourd was anything but a fluke found in  the thicket. He used very specific agricultural techniques (including  pumpkin-tailored crop rotation, selective breeding, and climate control)  to beat out his competition—a collective of hobbyists and extreme  gardeners from western Minnesota to upstate New York.
Keep reading …

The biggest pumpkin ever grown weighed 1,810.5 pounds. It was planted in the spring of 2010 and cultivated through the summer by Chris Stevens, a pumpkin enthusiast and cross-breeder extraordinaire, from New Richmond, Wisconsin. Stevens’ gargantuan gourd was anything but a fluke found in the thicket. He used very specific agricultural techniques (including pumpkin-tailored crop rotation, selective breeding, and climate control) to beat out his competition—a collective of hobbyists and extreme gardeners from western Minnesota to upstate New York.

Keep reading …

gardensinunexpectedplaces:

Plantbombing!

Yarnbombing — or the cozying up of the urban landscape with random acts of gorgeous knitting — has already been seen popping up in a number of cities. Now San Francisco-based urban knitter and guerilla gardeners Heather Powazek Champ and Derek Powazek have publicly come out with yarn bombing’s next evolution: planting low-maintenance species in beautifully hand-knitted yarn pockets all over their fair city.
Inspired after this year’s International Yarn Bombing Day, the husband and wife pair call their project “Plantbombing,” and it combines Heather’s love of “urban knitting” and Derek’s skill at gardening. Using yarn, a bit of soil, and some hardy plants, the result is a hands-off, smile-inducing work of art. 
For those of you who want to try making your own plant pockets, Heather’s site provides the instructions to get started.

(via Plantbombing: Colorful Yarn-Wrapped Plants Soften Up The City : TreeHugger)

Someday DIY activists are going to run out of things to turn into “bombs.” That day is not today.

gardensinunexpectedplaces:

Plantbombing!

Yarnbombing — or the cozying up of the urban landscape with random acts of gorgeous knitting — has already been seen popping up in a number of cities. Now San Francisco-based urban knitter and guerilla gardeners Heather Powazek Champ and Derek Powazek have publicly come out with yarn bombing’s next evolution: planting low-maintenance species in beautifully hand-knitted yarn pockets all over their fair city.

Inspired after this year’s International Yarn Bombing Day, the husband and wife pair call their project “Plantbombing,” and it combines Heather’s love of “urban knitting” and Derek’s skill at gardening. Using yarn, a bit of soil, and some hardy plants, the result is a hands-off, smile-inducing work of art. 

For those of you who want to try making your own plant pockets, Heather’s site provides the instructions to get started.

(via Plantbombing: Colorful Yarn-Wrapped Plants Soften Up The City : TreeHugger)

Someday DIY activists are going to run out of things to turn into “bombs.” That day is not today.

Are you an Iowan who professes an unshakable love for the sweet corn  that comes from your local farmstand? A Mainer who can’t live without  your state’s legendary blueberries? A Californian who considers the  silky-fleshed avocados plucked from your backyard tree unparalleled? The  flavors closest to home are often the ones closest to our hearts.
This summer, vacant lots across South Philadelphia are coming to life with the produce of Asia, as refuges from Bhutan and Burma (aka Myanmar) seek to bring the foods of their homelands to their new American state.
Through a project called Growing Home, the empty lots have been converted into five community gardens featuring 72 beds that are tended by 70 different Nepalese and Burmese clans.  There, the refugees have sown seeds that call up a connection to their  native soil—bok choy and mizuna, hot peppers and eggplant, fragrant Thai  basil and spicy Burmese mint. Read more …

Are you an Iowan who professes an unshakable love for the sweet corn that comes from your local farmstand? A Mainer who can’t live without your state’s legendary blueberries? A Californian who considers the silky-fleshed avocados plucked from your backyard tree unparalleled? The flavors closest to home are often the ones closest to our hearts.

This summer, vacant lots across South Philadelphia are coming to life with the produce of Asia, as refuges from Bhutan and Burma (aka Myanmar) seek to bring the foods of their homelands to their new American state.

Through a project called Growing Home, the empty lots have been converted into five community gardens featuring 72 beds that are tended by 70 different Nepalese and Burmese clans. There, the refugees have sown seeds that call up a connection to their native soil—bok choy and mizuna, hot peppers and eggplant, fragrant Thai basil and spicy Burmese mint. Read more …

Can you spot the difference between these two gardens?
Broccoli, collards, garlic, and arugula flank the walkway of the  White House’s kitchen garden. Turn right, and you’ll find herbs, Swiss  chard, and peas; turn left, and you’ll amble by kohlrabi, radishes,  kale, and beets before discovering raspberry bushes.
The lush, productive garden, planted by Michelle Obama and staff in 2009  (the first at the White House since Eleanor Roosevelt’s World War II  victory garden) is the picture of healthy eating and responsible  farming. But it is far from an accurate picture of crops funded by  America’s farm subsidies, says Kitchen Gardeners International, a global community of sustainable food advocates. Read more …

Can you spot the difference between these two gardens?

Broccoli, collards, garlic, and arugula flank the walkway of the White House’s kitchen garden. Turn right, and you’ll find herbs, Swiss chard, and peas; turn left, and you’ll amble by kohlrabi, radishes, kale, and beets before discovering raspberry bushes.

The lush, productive garden, planted by Michelle Obama and staff in 2009 (the first at the White House since Eleanor Roosevelt’s World War II victory garden) is the picture of healthy eating and responsible farming. But it is far from an accurate picture of crops funded by America’s farm subsidies, says Kitchen Gardeners International, a global community of sustainable food advocates. Read more …

The next time you visit your local library  to check out a book, perhaps you’ll leave with some basil, butterfly  weed, or sweet pea seeds in your pocket. Seed-lending programs,  operating out of public libraries, are taking root. Read more …

The next time you visit your local library to check out a book, perhaps you’ll leave with some basil, butterfly weed, or sweet pea seeds in your pocket. Seed-lending programs, operating out of public libraries, are taking root. Read more …

Guerilla gardeners and chairbombers around the world are taking to the street under the banner of “tactical urbanism” (here’s a round-up on the trend). Would you go rogue for urbanism?

"

At the average rate of 0.6 to 0.7 millimeter per year, Canadian peat bogs add 6 to 7 centimeters in depth (less than 3 inches) over the course of a century. It will require 3,000 years to amass the 2-meter depth needed to justify the costs of extraction. Under these conditions, a fully mined peat bog will not be able to support a second “harvest” for at least 3,000 years.

Can a resource that renews itself this slowly ever be considered sustainable? If we balk at cutting down 500-year-old trees in old-growth forests, should we accept the extraction of 3,000-year-old sphagnum moss from peat bogs?

"

— Sorry folks, peat moss for gardening isn’t very green. Learn more …