changing

FOR GOOD

The earth is speaking to us. As our lives continue to center around convenience, entertainment, and productivity, our planet has been forced to absorb the impact of our actions. This is causing global warming, a sea full of more plastic than fish, and food contaminated with chemicals. It is time to change.  The spring of 2020 finds the world spending most of their time at home, forced to seek alternative ways of getting things done.  With our traditional convenience products in short supply, now is the perfect time to make small changes that we once thought were too difficult, or frankly not important enough. While our team gathered on weekly Zoom meetings (during the Covid-19 pandemic), we discussed ways that we could continue to serve our vision of "elevating health and happiness through the experience of horticulture".  A healthy planet contributes to happy trees - and happy people.  We can care for our urban forests in more ways than just pruning and soil care.  It is about adopting a culture of respect for our entire planet.  At HMI, we are committed to making one positive lifestyle change a month. This month we subscribed to @cleancult so that our hand soap and all-purpose cleaners arrive as plant-based, all natural refills in cardboard containers. With an office of 20, this can make a huge impact in the amount of plastic waste we recycle. Won't you join us in taking a small step toward a brighter future? We've witnessed the difference we all can make by doing our part. Let's keep this energy and power of one going!

And don't forget to check in each month to see the changes our team chooses to make at home and at the office.  We've got some enthusiastic product testers on our hands so we hope to bring you informed choices that will make it easier for you to make the switch!

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CLEANING

Our April, 2020 Change

We are reducing plastic consumption by subscribing to Cleancult, an all-natural product line that ships everything in cardboard refill containers.  You can get a starter kit of beautiful glass dispensers, but we chose to reuse the sturdy plastic ones we already have.  Scented with essential oils, these are popular with both the men and women in our office - and they they are rock stars at getting the worst grime off of an arborist's dirty hands! What's even cooler?  They remain completely carbon neutral by planting trees to offset all of their production and shipping.  Can we hear a "hell yeah"?

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SOIL HEALTH

Our July, 2020 Change

Healthy trees start with healthy soils.  The best way to help our plants thrive is to keep them well nourished.  Contributing to planet health doesn't need to happen in epic gestures....we can create small habits that contribute to the sustainability of our planet AND keep unnecessary out of landfills.  Coffee grinds fill a good portion of our composting bin here at the shop, but home composting systems can really make an awesome smoothie for your landscape!

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LESS WASTE

Our October, 2020 Change

We continue our research to find the most universally loved shampoo bar.  Here are a few that the McPhee family is trying out.  The Rosemary Mint conditioner is holding up well and doing a great job!  We're addicted to the Love Beauty & Planet solid shampoo - but if you like a less perfumed scent then the Trade Joe's Tea Tree is your best bet for performance and price.  With these solid bars the world will never need to clutter a landfill with plastic shampoo bottles again.  Options are popping up everywhere so help us make an impact by making the switch.  Like everything, change can be hard, but trust us......you're gonna love these! Our team was challenged to bring in three old shampoo bottles to recycle, take a bar and try it; then write a review.  Everyone who participated got a crisp new $100 bill.  Not a bad incentive...nd now several have made the switch!

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COLLABORATE

Our January, 2021 Change

Their tagline is "Wear What You Believe In" and they sell socks that protect the planet.  With over 17 causes to choose from, you can own Fair Trade certified, organic cotton socks that benefit things like:

*Planting 10 trees in Uganda per pair

*Mental health causes

*Saving cheetas, sea turtles and more

*Access to clean water

*Providing meals to children

*Donating books

All parts of the supply chain are produced ethically, organically, are sustainably sourced, and consciously created for a better world.  These socks rock....both in their raison d'etre and their function.  You've gotta buy socks anyway so why not get some groovy ones that do the job and so much more?! 

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VERSITILE BAMBOO

Our April, 2021 Change

Bamboo is turning out to be the rockstar of the sustainability cause!  We may not be inclined to think a small thing like a plastic band-aid could really contribute to pollution but just think about how many that really is if even 50% of the world dropped on onto the ground right now.  Isn't a compostable bandage a great alternative?  These little beauties have all of the sticking power of your favorite boo-boo fixer, and when they've finished their task, they will naturally decompose.  If performance isn't affected, why not opt for these the next time you refill your first aid kit?

*Hypoallergenic

*Options: splinters, aloe, colors, charcoal

*Vegan

*Parabin free

*Certified B Corporation

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MAKE AT HOME

Our July, 2021 Change

Ready made snacks are convenient - and there's definitely a slew of new high-energy, health food products out there.  From gourmet granolas, to dried fruit, and protein bites, you can find almost anything for on-the-go snacking.  The problem is, these high priced snacks usually come packaged in heavy weight, ziplock style plastic bags.  These bags could potentially be reused for years but are most often discarded of after the meal.  One solution is to invest in a Terracycle box to dispose of responsibly.  (see our xxx change for good) OR you get one of these easy recipies into your repertoire and knock out a low cost, low waste option in no time.  This one is a staple in our house and is always a hit at any business meeting.  Give it a shot.  You can save up to $5 a batch AND prevent unnecessary waste in our landfills! Check out our Pinterest site for more healthy eating on the go ideas.

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WASTE

Our May, 2020 Change

This month, as our office slowly begins to see more activity, we have made the switch to plant based trash bags. With 20 people and a minimum of 10 trash cans, this can quickly add up to significantly reduced plastic waste. There may be other great brands out there, but these Hippo Saks are super strong and are standing up to the challenge of our workplace perfectly! They are plant based (made from sugarcane) and are manufactured in the USA. We think that's pretty cool.

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COMPOSTABLE PHONE CASES

Our November, 2020 Change

Finally!!!!! Thank you, Pela for creating an outstanding product that is completely compostable AND lives up to the high standards of your most demanding teckie! These cases are amazing and come in a ton of designs.  We're sold on the idea so when it's time for our employees to upgrade their phones, the new Pela cases are our treat!

Pela cases are....

* Made with 30% less carbon emissions

* Use 34% less water

* 80 less waste production

* Prevented 48,433,866 plastic bags from entering the oceans

Check out Pelacase.com for more items like sunglasses, watch bands and earbud cases.

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SUPPORT PROGRESS

Our February, 2021 Change

We know the coffee pod craze has taken hold - and will be one of the most difficult habits to break in this world of convenience.  We get it.  They're so easy to use, produce a consistent product, and you don't have to deal with cleaning up your coffee grinds.  We would LOVE everyone to switch to reusable pods, but that's a big ask and old habits are hard to break.  So while we focus on progress, not perfection, we've started supporting companies that are doing more to make recycling happen.  Teracycle has a humongous line of recycling bins that cover everything from used makeup supplies to miscellaneous kitchen gadgets.  Just invest in one of these specialty boxes, fill it up, and mail it back (return postage already included in your purchase).  Terracyle will see that the items are emptied, recycled or upcycled.  Let's face it.....we all want what's best for the planet but it does take time and effort.  If we don't want to empty and recycle those pods, let's support those companies that are willing and able to do it.  Yes, it's a little bit of an investment but isn't our planet worth it?  

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PURCHASE FOR PURPOSE

Our May, 2021 Change

Don't you just feel good when you work with people you like or you purchase from companies you admire?  Take a simple cup of tea for example.  There are countless beverage companies that could support your taste bud's needs but what if every sip of that tea also supported a good cause?  Wouldn't that warm up more than your belly?  We think Numi deserves a seat at the table for all that they do.  Let's just run down a few of their bright spots:

*Organic and Fair Trade Certified

*Fair Labor Certifed

*Together for H2Hope

*Certified B Corporation

*Compostable packaging

*Numi Foundation provides food relief

*Climate neutral certified

Not only that but their products taste great.  We make it a point to stock up on these here in the shop for all to enjoy!

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STAY TUNED

Our August, 2021 Change

Our very first "Change for Good" here at the shop was to subscribe to Clean Cult for our all-purpose and hand cleaners.  We love the refills that come in the recyclable cardboard packaging and have enjoyed it for more than a year.  Well word must have spread because now there are a plethora of low waste, soap products on the market.  Competition can be a great thing when it forces us all to up our game.  So....we'll keep that shout out to Clean Cult at the beginning of this page - but we've found a new favorite!  Blue Land takes the prize for its innovative and space saving soap refills that come in tablet form.  Just like alka-seltzer, you just drop it into the water and "plop plop fizz fizz" you've got a beautiful glass jar of hand soap, bathroom, multi-surface, or window cleaner.  They even have a powdered dish detergent (think Comet) that comes in a silicone container and is great when you need a little extra scrubbing.  Let's be clear...there are lots of great products our there now so a switch to non-plastic, all natural ingredients should be EASY!  Who knows what the next company will be that knocks Blue Land off of its throne, but for now it holds the current title of favorite!

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HEALTH

Our June, 2020 Change

Okay, this one's a little personal, but we wanted to make an even larger impact by sending some ideas home to our team families.  This month we are helping to combat the more than 1 BILLION toothpaste tubes that are added to landfills annually. Just nibble on two tablets until they are a fine powder and start brushing!  Not only effective but FUN....it's almost like having a little dessert right before you brush. We're sending sample bottles home with all of our employees to share with their families.  This is a fun and easy change that can have a huge impact over your lifetime!

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CLEANER FUEL

Our September, 2020 Change

DGP ECO32 Bar & Chain Oil has ultimate biodegradability, making it ideal for 100% loss applications and is classified non-hazardous to plants, animals and humans. It is designed to maintain a high flash point to prevent arcing and uses no phosphorus, chlorine, or metal based additives.  As owners of more than 50 chain saws, switching to this product can significantly reduce our impact of negative waste on the environment.  Thanks to our friends at AutoBeGreen, we are exploring many green alternatives for our vehicles and equipment.  Stay tuned for more positive changes using these environmentally friendly products!

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SAY NO TO JUGS

Our December, 2020 Change

This is the laundry of the future!  Did you know that traditional, liquid laundry detergent is 90% water?  And those huge, plastic jugs.....ugh!  There's NO NEED for that.  Laundry strips are a no-brainer when it comes to adopting better ways of doing things.  These dissolvable sheets are concentrated detergent.  The only thing missing is the water (and that is conveniently provided by your machine:). No heavy jugs to carry or to pollute our oceans.  No messing liquids dripping down the side of the measuring cap (you know what what we're talking about).  No space hogging containers to get those uniforms clean.  Saving 95% in product transportation costs/emission alone should be enough to convince us. If you're just not convinced that these work, give us a call and we'll send you a sample pack to try!

*Free of parabins and other bad stuff

*Saved 5,814,991 jugs from the oceans

*Free shipping

*Environmentally friendly ingredients

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RESPONSIBLE TEXTILES

Our March, 2021 Change

The textile industry is one of the largest contributors to chemical pollution, carbon emissions and waste.  Resale and thrift stores may be doing their part to extend the life cycle of clothing, but it is not nearly enough to keep up with the damage of constant manufacturing.  We're on a journey here to make better choices.  We purchase tons of clothing for our team - much of it is currently cotton or tech fabric, which is usually produced with pesticides, microplastics and chemical processes that ensure longevity.  Until things really turn around, it will continue to be hard to find the quantity of work shirts we need, at a reasonable price point and organically made.  So while we continue to search for options for our "get-really-dirty" shirts, we are committed to sourcing our sales team wardrobes from envrionmentally responsible manufactureres.  Royal Robbins, Patagonia and United by Blue are just a few of the forward thinking companies that are supporting better practices.

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CONCENTRATED SOAP

Our June, 2021 Change

Our very first "Change for Good" here at the shop was to subscribe to Clean Cult for our all-purpose and hand cleaners.  We love the refills that come in the recyclable cardboard packaging and have enjoyed it for more than a year.  Well word must have spread because now there are a plethora of low waste, soap products on the market.  Competition can be a great thing when it forces us all to up our game.  So....we'll keep that shout out to Clean Cult at the beginning of this page - but we've found a new favorite!  Blue Land takes the prize for its innovative and space saving soap refills that come in tablet form.  Just like alka-seltzer, you just drop it into the water and "plop plop fizz fizz" you've got a beautiful glass jar of hand soap, bathroom, multi-surface, or window cleaner.  They even have a powdered dish detergent (think Comet) that comes in a silicone container and is great when you need a little extra scrubbing.  Let's be clear...there are lots of great products our there now so a switch to non-plastic, all natural ingredients should be EASY!  Who knows what the next company will be that knocks Blue Land off of its throne, but for now it holds the current title of favorite!

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COMING SOON

Our September, 2021 Change

Our very first "Change for Good" here at the shop was to subscribe to Clean Cult for our all-purpose and hand cleaners.  We love the refills that come in the recyclable cardboard packaging and have enjoyed it for more than a year.  Well word must have spread because now there are a plethora of low waste, soap products on the market.  Competition can be a great thing when it forces us all to up our game.  So....we'll keep that shout out to Clean Cult at the beginning of this page - but we've found a new favorite!  Blue Land takes the prize for its innovative and space saving soap refills that come in tablet form.  Just like alka-seltzer, you just drop it into the water and "plop plop fizz fizz" you've got a beautiful glass jar of hand soap, bathroom, multi-surface, or window cleaner.  They even have a powdered dish detergent (think Comet) that comes in a silicone container and is great when you need a little extra scrubbing.  Let's be clear...there are lots of great products our there now so a switch to non-plastic, all natural ingredients should be EASY!  Who knows what the next company will be that knocks Blue Land off of its throne, but for now it holds the current title of favorite!