Flora & Fauna: American Kestrel

The American kestrel (Falco sparverius) might not be the first bird you associate with cities but even if you haven't spotted one that doesn't mean there's not one in your neighborhood. These little raptors are the smallest on the entire continent - but that doesn't mean they aren't formidable predators. Despite their ferocity, they also [...]

Field Notes: Product Safety and Research

I’m the kind of person who thinks it's important to know what is in the products you're exposing your body to, and to be educated about all the potential effects they might have. This goes not only for synthetic remedies, but natural ones as well. DISCLAIMER: Before you use herbal preparations, consult a medical professional [...]

Homebrew: Perfume – “Forest Flora Dew”

TYPE: PERFUME HERBS: ROSE, LAVENDER, BIRCH, CEDAR USES: PERFUME, AROMATHERAPY After making an experimental fragrance oil a few weeks ago, I decided I was going to try try my hand at making a real fragrance. I bought a couple of carrier oils to experiment with, and some witch hazel extract to act as an alcohol [...]

Potion Review: Schmidt’s – Natural Deodorant Stick, Cedarwood + Juniper

PRODUCT: SCHMIDT'S - NATURAL DEODORANT STICK, CEDARWOOD + JUNIPER BASICS: DEODORANT | $8.99 / 3.25 oz | CRUELTY FREE – VEGAN – NATURAL - ALUMINUM FREE HERBS: CEDARWOOD - JUNIPER Ever since giving up aluminum in my deodorants, I’ve done a bit of research into natural deodorants that people say actually work - after all, many [...]

Field Notes: Spring Buds in Central Park

Living in the city, you might think that there’s not much for an arborist to do or see. In truth it is one of the most  biodiverse environments I’ve lived in - particularly in terms of the trees and plants that can be seen here. First, one must consider resources like Brooklyn Botanic Garden and New [...]

Potion Review: Weleda – Sage Deodorant

PRODUCT: WELEDA SAGE DEODORANT BASICS: DEODORANT | $12.00 / 3.4 oz | CRUELTY FREE - CERTIFIED NATURAL - FAIR TRADE - ORGANIC HERBS: SAGE LEAF OIL, TEA TREE, LEMON Being a vegetarian, I’m not a stranger to scrutinizing ingredient lists. However, as ashamed as I am to admit it, it has only been over the [...]

Field Notes: Urban Spring Chorus

There are some things that never change, no matter where you live - even though my apartment is in a relatively industrial area, around the corner from a seemingly endless stretch of warehouses, the cacophony of spring still reaches my bedroom in the morning. I think this is probably true of most people’s houses - [...]