We are recyclaholics here at PJ-we believe that being mindful of our day to day actions such as recycling whenever and wherever possible, turning off lights, not over filling the kettle, and being conscious of water and electricity usage will achieve much more than stopping eating beef.
I'm forever collecting disgarded newspapers from trains to use instead of polystyrene packing, asking friends for bottles and jars for our creatiosn, and the first olace I go to when i get o a garden centre is the skip-you would not believe what they throw away! Supermarkets are even worse...happy to condem Orchids to a land fill rather than sell them off cheap, even at cost....but this is the western way.
We try to take it a step further-what if we could save the energy needed to process these materials and make a product to save anther being made? This is what we have done in our Inebriated Orchid range, with wine bottle vases, and our Sandpit range with second life palette wood. Not only are they functional, and eco-friendly, but we thing they look pretty cool too!
Don't expect our products to be regular, generic and identical pieces, or our packaging to be brand new perfectly pressed 24hr life-span cardboard boxes....we ask other shops for their old boxes, and use newspaper to pack. Rest assured that we are committed to making sure our creations reach you in pristine condition, but we feel it is steps likes this which have to be taken, and we want to play our part./ Which leads us to our next point;
As well as the recycling steps above, we want to encourage, inspire and help you grow your own produce.
The carbon footprint of foods that we could easily grow at home is shocking (not trying to shame you here! We all do it, but wouldn't it be great if we took a bit of time and didn't? And benefited from it too....). The wasteful practices of supermarkets throw away 1000s of tons of unused fruit and vegetables everyday, so by growing our own, not only are we releaving land fills and preventing waste and pollution, we can save money money (imagine buying one mint plant for £2.50 rather than a pack of mint every-time for £1), and benefit from know exactly what has gone into the production of our food...(the term organic is often a bit of a con, as many chemicals are still permitted, but have to be used at a higher dosage than 'non-organic' chemicals because they aren't as effective). You will also enjoy a superior quality and of flavour and texture as you can pcik your fruit of=r vegetable when it is perfectlky ripe, (instead of being picked green and ripend on the boat) and minimise the time between harvest and pan-this point is very important-as soon as a fruit of vegetable is picked or removed from the earth, it starts to dehydrate and it's chemical structure begginings to change. For example, the difference of a shelf-bought bunch of asparagus and a bunch that you have picked minutes before outting in the pan is remarkable...even the best green grocer can't compete with this!
Finally, there is the practice of cultivation itself that reconnects us to our natural ancient past....this can be very soothing a sit satisfies a basic instinct, the body and soul knows it needs to work with plants to survive. By raising a plant from seed, nurturing it, watching the buds turn to flower then mature to fruit, then consuming this fruit not only nurtures our body, but nurtures our soul. And this seamlessly leads us on to our next point....!
Cultivating fruiting or flowering plants has it's benefits as described above, but there is yet another beneficial aspect to gardening.
Modern western life is hectic, the days of shire horses and furrow have been replaced by commutes and desks with computers. We work through the week and year only to be broken up by weekends and holidays...it can become monotonous.
Meanwhile, nature has it's own agenda, and changes it's image four times a year! It doesn't get bogged down and bored, it moves ever forward. Animals and plants join in with this festival, but we have somewhat neglected it, and the only time that our link to it is apparent is when we suffer from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder).
Plants are the perfect way to plug ourselves back into nature, and the results can be very beneficial. Therapists often recommend gardening as a way to de-stress. People that garden are happier!
I believe that as well as the nurture of a plant, it is also reconnecting to the seasonal changes that brings us balance, helping our minds and bodies adjust to the changes naturally. The more you get involved with plants, the more you'll notice....the blossoms and bulbs bursting to life in Spring announcing that life rejuvenates and that the party is starting (it really puts a spring in your step....! Perhaps that's why the y call it spring?! Where's my laughy face emoji?!) the first fresh green leaves then follow to make way for the carnival of colour scent all through the summer, then as the holidays draw to a close, the fruit and grains are ready to be harvested, enjoyed and preserved.....then, as if giving us one for the road, the autumn leaves glow, and if you go to the right places or buy the right plants, the autumn flowering bulbs give us a quick kiss before it all calms down for winter.....then we wait excitedly for it to start again....and winter goes on, and it seems impossible.....but then those blossoms start again....
It's an ancient dance, and it's been going on since time again...we are part of it, and we need to be part of it, and when we are, our bodies and minds feel it. It clams us, it soothes us, it relaxes, revitalises and refreshes us, and all those things that we get worked up about fall away when we see one of our favourite plants forming a flower bud, or taste our favourite apple. It's not complicated, it's just one if those finer things in life....