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Six Eco-Friendly Swaps for This Summer

Summer is the best season!

And we all know summertime means having fun, being lazy, and spending time with those you love. The worries and the stress of work, school, and responsibilities fade away with every weekend; nothing else seems to matter more than your tan or having a good time.

Except, that’s just not true anymore. Our planet is becoming ridden with plastic, pollution, chemicals, and more with every passing day. You might not know it, but you could be taking part in the destruction of our planet with the things you use every day – especially in the hot summer months. The items you use this summer could be doing more damage than you think.

But thankfully, there are easy swaps for more eco-friendly products that’ll help minimize the impact you have on the environment! Check out these six earth-friendly products you could swap for the things you use daily, so you can have a fun and eco-friendly summer!

Reusable water bottles and travel mugs.

Water, coffee, and lemonade are summer essentials. However, plastic water bottles and plastic to-go cups from your local coffee shop are a massive problem for our earth and landfills.

Reusable travel drink cups will not only save the planet but save you time and money. Plus – pro tip: a reusable travel mug is perfect for to-go cocktails. So, when you need to mix a summer for that beach day or festival, you’ll be ready!

Chemical-free sunscreen.

If you’re still using chemical-ridden sunscreen, do you even care about the environment, you are not only hurting the environment but also your skin.

Recent research and studies show a common chemical in spray-on and lotion sunscreens — oxybenzone — contributes to coral bleaching, the killing of reefs, and the widespread destruction of ocean life.

In addition, studies have shown that the health effects of sunscreens with chemical ingredients such as oxybenzone and avobenzone can lead to skin irritation, hormonal disruption, and even skin cancer.

Go vegan at your next summer gathering. 

Instead of going for the regular, meaty hot dogs at your next barbecue, give the vegans ones a shot. Many people like the flavor of the vegan dogs and burgers even better.

Additionally, they are healthier and way better for the environment, as animal agriculture is a huge contributor to climate change. So, at your next barbecue, opt for an eco-friendlier product instead.

Eco-friendly and cruelty-free shampoo.

All those summer days lounging at the pool or beach have of washing and conditioning our hair in overdrive. But do you really know what’s in your shampoo? And do you know how they test the ingredients or what they test on?

According to Health Status, the chemicals found in shampoo can pose health risks such as memory and hair loss. Many other common ingredients have also been known to cause eye and skin irritation, hair follicle damage, and other health complications. It’s also important to consider, whatever goes down our drains ends up in our waterways and can pollute our drinking water, harming humans and animals alike.

There are plenty of organic shampoo products out there, but even shampoos with healthy formulas generally come in plastic packaging. Shampoo bars tend to be most sustainable, as they typically come in paper packaging and are often made from eco-friendly, non-toxic, and healthy ingredients.

[Get more tips on eco-friendly summer travels here!]

Pass on the Plastic Straw

Not only are we filling the oceans with plastic water bottles, but we’re also contributing to the global plastic problem by continuing to use plastic straws.

But sometimes that straw just makes everything taste better, not to mention helps minimize messes. We get it, so opt for reusable straws instead! They are both eco-friendly and practical products.

Utilize reusable grocery bags. 

Summer feels endless, but so can the trips to the grocery store. It’s time to make the switch to reusable bags.

Not only are they recyclable and way more sustainable than plastic, but they’re also usually powerful and will carry twice as much as regular plastic bags. So not only are they an eco-friendly product, they are practical! Buy a few and keep them in your car, so you never forget to bring them with you wherever you’re going.

With these easy swaps, you’ll be having an eco-friendlier summer in no time! You will be helping save this beautiful earth while also having a memorable summer and enjoying life. Stay tuned to our blog for more eco-friendly and sustainable living tips!

Six Tips for Getting Your Eco-Friendly Garden Ready for Spring

The temperatures are rising, the birds are chirping, and the buds are blooming. Spring is almost here! It’s time to get ready for the upcoming season and prepare your garden. While working to create a beautiful and spring ready garden, you can also help to create a more beautiful planet.

You might not realize it, but gardeners play a crucial role in developing a healthy eco-system. In fact, eco-gardening can even impact energy use, reduce common waste and slow down climate changes. It’s time for you to play a part in this amazing environmental impact movement! There are various ways to create a more self-sustaining environment within your very own yard that can have an incredibly positive impact on the world around us. Here are a few tips on how to make your very own eco-friendly garden!

Bugs are not the enemy. 

I think most of us can agree that some insects are downright scary. Who doesn’t scream when they see a cockroach crawling across their kitchen floor? And who doesn’t jump when a spider is spotted on their desk? However, not all bugs are the enemy!

Many bugs can enhance the sustainability of our earth and your home garden. For instance, ladybugs, lacewings, and even ground beetles help reduce the population of bugs harmful to your plants. They play a part in eating aphids (small bugs that suck the sap and nutrients from plants). Let the “good guy” help you reduce the risk and damage that could happen to your gorgeous garden.

The early bird gets the worm.

The good bugs can’t handle all those nasty bugs on their own. They need a little help from their friends. With regard to defeating those slimy snails, caterpillars, and grubs – birds are there to step in and save the day!

These guardians of nature feed on the wormy creatures that tend to destroy your blooms. It’s time to put up bird feeders around your garden to encourage more visits from our beloved bird friends.

Celebrate the natives.

Native plants are those plants that grow naturally in your region, and we should celebrate them! It’s easier to grow and sustain these plants because they’re already suited to your region’s soil and climate. Some Native North Carolina plants include: 

  • Wood-Anemone
  • Carolina Lupine
  • Eastern Blue Star

Native plants will require less effort and even less water to maintain and grow. Additionally, by growing native plants, you will also help preserve the birds and insects in your area by providing food and shelter for them. Ask the local gardening experts about the native plants in your area for more information.

[Check out this post if you want to know other ways to help the environment!]

Keep it diverse.

Healthy gardens tend to be healthiest when filled with a diverse mix of plants. Also, combining specific complementary plans can even enhance growth. Growing a tall plant, such as sunflowers, can naturally provide shade for those sensitive to the bright UV rays.

Consider which plants you want to live in your garden because some plants can hinder others’ vitality. Do your research before planting so that you don’t risk the deterioration of plants in your garden.

Keep composting cool.

Although you can quickly run by Lowe’s to buy dirt, why not participate in composting for creating your soil? Composting is not only simple, but it is also becoming more and more common.

Plus, it provides additional nutrients that your garden needs to grow. Set up a composting bin in your yard, save money at the local gardening store, and protect the environment!

Remember the 3 Rs. 

Reduce, reuse, and recycle – our three favorite “R” words! Yes, it’s easy to use everyday packaging for your plants, but why not recycle your plastic bottles and use them to enhance your garden?

Protect your seeds with those used water bottles by cutting off the base and placing them around your future blooms. Or reuse your recycled plastic a make a DIY watering can for your thirsty crops.

Developing an eco-friendly environment this spring will not only brighten up your home garden but will also play a huge role in making Mother Nature healthy and beautiful. Home gardening promotes a healthier environment and sustainability. Sustainability is all about implementing good habits to help our planet.

At Carolina Fibre Corporation, we believe in sustainability, whether it’s gardening, composting, or recycling.

Seven Ways Stay Green While Being Quarantined

With most people, social distancing at home, staying busy, and sane can be difficult. It’s important to remember while we’re all doing our part to keep clean, avoid unnecessary travel, and keep an eye out for our loved ones we have to take care of our environment as well. As we are focusing on keeping ourselves healthy at home, it is crucial that we try and keep our planet healthy too.
While there has been some good news during this stressful time, the current trend of panic-buying takes away from sustainability. As a society, we are purchasing a lot of items that contain plastic, like hand sanitizer and bottled water. And we are being encouraged to buy a lot of single-use items, such as toilet paper, face masks, gloves. These will ultimately wind up taking space in landfills, or worse – on the roads, our woods, and parking lots.
Keep reading for seven ways you can use this time at home to give back to the planet and be more resourceful in the future.
Try to avoid purchasing items with a lot of plastic. 
Plastic debris is found everywhere. It clogs street drains in our cities; it clutters campgrounds and national parks and litters waterways. Thanks to runoff, and our affection for dumping into the nearest river or lake, plastic is also increasingly common in our oceans. Not only is plastic taking over our environment, but the toxins also pollute our water, soil, and air, and our wildlife is in danger. According to a study from Plymouth University, plastic pollution affects at least 700 marine species. At the same time, some estimates suggest that at least 100 million marine mammals are killed each year from plastic pollution.
So, while we may be tempted to purchase that big case of bottled water or that massive jug of hand sanitizer, remember that when this over, we still need a clean and healthy planet to survive. Instead, try and find more creative ways to fulfill your needs. A family of four can prevent 5,840 water bottles from being used and entering our environment every year by switching to reusable water bottles. Not only that, but you can save a lot of money- and we all know how important that is right now. If you are running low on hand sanitizer, make your own and reuse your bottle with this recipe from Healthline.
Try to avoid purchasing single-use items. 
Rather than waiting in the long lines for toilet paper, save yourself a trip to the store and pre-order online. When you subscribe, products are shipped as often as you choose. Check out these following plastic-free brands.

Rather than disposable gloves, wash your hands frequently. However, if you feel more comfortable with gloves, buy plastic-free reusable gloves. Rather than disposing of them, simply wash and dry to be reused later. Do the same with face masks, instead of using disposable ones (which are tough to find anyways) invest in a homemade mask or make your own.
Get busy gardening. 
Planting a garden during a quarantine can be daunting but not impossible. Having your own garden will lessen your trips to the store, provide your family with healthy foods, reduce boredom, save money, and teach your family about sustainability. Not only that but planting a garden helps the environment in the following ways:

  • Reduce pollution
  • Reduces carbon footprint
  • Contributes to cleaner groundwater
  • Decreases erosion
  • Lowers energy costs

Start composting. 
Save your eggshells, banana peels, and coffee grounds because they’re more useful than you think. By creating a composting bin, you’re taking all the unwanted shells, peels, and (most) leftover food and turning it into amazing fertilizer for your garden. Just because we don’t eat peels and scraps doesn’t mean they don’t serve a purpose.
Reduce food waste.
It is essential during this time to reduce food waste and make sure the food you do purchase will last as long as possible. Cook with leftovers, make veggie stock out of food scraps, make banana bread from old bananas, and making jam out of mushy berries. If you do end up with food waste, another alternative is to add it to your compost pile.
Purge your closet.
One of the bonuses of being stuck at home is that you can take on projects that would typically be put off. Going through your closet is one of those tasks. Take a couple of hours to sort through what you don’t need anymore and donate any items you can to a local shelter or nonprofit so your items can be reused and repurposed.
Continue to recycle. 
Recycling is such an easy thing to do, yet so many don’t bother to do it. Reusing materials and properly disposing of harmful ones is an essential step toward protecting our world. With dozens of recycling facilities and most cities offering recycle pickup, there are few available excuses for not recycling; even during a shelter in place order.
Hopefully, these ideas will get you on the way to a greener, more sustainable lifestyle while being quarantined at home.
However, if you still have concerns about recycling and eco-friendly living in general, Carolina Fibre is here to help. Check out our blog for more tips or contact us today!

Five Steps to Prepare your Garden for a Successful Season

A great garden requires a lot of preparation and maintenance to develop. However, even if you forgot to start your planning in the late winter, you can still have an amazing and fruitful garden this year. In honor of Earth Day, here is a checklist of five steps you need to take to get your garden ready for a successful season.
Get organized.
While the weather is still iffy, use this time to organize your shed or garage and go through your tools and make sure everything is in good shape. Oil hinges, sharpen blades, replace anything that can’t be repaired, and consider expanding or upgrading your collection. You would be shocked by how much easier your garden prep will be with the proper tools!
This is also an excellent opportunity to replace your supplies. Make sure you have enough fertilizer, soil, and other required materials. The last thing you want to do is have to make a pit stop to the hardware store when you’re knee-deep in perennials.
Clear out the old to make room for the new.
Throughout the fall and winter months, your garden will be exposed to the elements. The weather and outdoor environment will leave behind all kinds of weeds and debris. Preform a spring cleaning and deep purge of your garden area. Dead debris should be put into a compost pile to break down later. Mulch or other organic matter can stay where it is to be combined with the soil, but the fresher mulch will have to be raked away to expose the new dirt.
Your number one goal right now is to find any weeds that may still be alive. These must be removed from the soil right away. You don’t want to leave any living weeds as they can come back to haunt you and your garden. The same cleanup method applies to your trees and bushes. Prepare for spring by trimming off any dead or broken branches and removing all the old debris to make room for fresh new blooms.
Prep the soil.
Once the winter frost has faded, and the soil is usable, it’s time to make sure your garden is ready for planting. In winter, soil tends to become compacted and unpliable, so the first thing you will need to do is loosen it by tilling or turning.
Next, you can add compost, but be sure to utilize a soil test to see where your nutrient levels lie. This will tell you what type of elements you might need to add. If you have clay or poor soil quality, it is essential to add a healthy layer of compost to improve the nutrient content, texture, and moisture-retention. Gently rake the soil so its level and water it carefully to help release air pockets.
Create an agenda.
Consult your zone to see which vegetables, flowers, and plants are best for your region. You can also talk to someone at your local nursery to get some recommendations. Creating a plan ahead of time is essential in planting a successful garden.
According to Old World Farms, the biggest mistake a gardener can make is not to put thought into the planning of their garden. The experts there recommend creating a master grow list, making a sketch of your garden and the plans, and planning a timeline for the season. Taking the time now to prepare for not only what you will grow, but when it will need to be planted may sound simple, but it is crucial. The step is often overlooked, and by the end of the gardening process, it can cause big problems.
Top it off.
After you’ve implemented your plans and everything it’s planted it is time to top your garden off. Apply a layer of mulch where you can. Mulch is much more effective in keeping weeds at bay if you can quickly get it in place before the weeds start sprouting.
Having a home garden not only makes your backyard beautiful, but it has many ecological benefits as well. Some of the many benefits include:

  • Reduced pollution.
  • Instead of buying produce from your local grocery store, you can grow vegetables and fruits at home.
  • Combats erosion.
  • Helps balance the ecosystem.
  • Contributes to clean air.
  • Assists the bees in and the environment in pollination.

[Check out this post if you want to know other ways to help the environment!]
Home gardening promotes a healthier environment and sustainability. Sustainability is all about implementing good habits to help our planet. At Carolina Fibre Corporation, we believe in sustainability, whether its gardening, composting, or recycling.
Do you have any good ideas for sustainability? We would love to hear about them on our Facebook page!

6 Ridiculously Easy Ways to Help the Environment

Using expanding technology can make our lives easier, but it can also damage the environment. Much of our technology releases toxic greenhouse gasses and other emissions that are harmful to the planet, especially most transportation technology. Thankfully, as people become increasingly aware of our technology’s impact on the earth, we’ve used innovation to create new ways to minimize the negative impacts.
Even the average person can contribute to keeping our environment healthy and intact. Here are six extremely easy ways you can help keep the planet intact.


If you want to take your environmental obligation to a new level, try sharing your passion with your community. Volunteering to help protect the environment has many benefits. In addition to helping our planet heal from human impact, volunteering provides an excellent avenue to meet like-minded people. There’s no better way to make friends than to meet people while working toward a common goal. Not sure where to volunteer?

Here are a few ideas that might help you choose organizations that positively impact the planet.

  • Local animal rescue organizations
  • Parks and Recreation programs
  • Volunteer matching websites

Plant a tree.

It’s been estimated that anywhere from 3.5 to 7 billion trees are cut down each day around the world. Isn’t that devastating? It seems that humans are cutting down more trees than new ones have a chance to grow.
You can help improve this problem by simply planting a new tree. Even planting a single tree can do so much good for nature and the environment. Trees help clean the air, filter water, absorb carbon, create shade, give birds shelter, and enrich the soil.

Not sure how to plant a tree? Here are a few tips:

  • Research what species thrives in your area
  • Plan a location that helps survival
  • Plant the tree during cooler seasons when soil is moist
  • Use supports for smaller trees until they’re bigger and stronger

Eat seasonally.

Eating produce during their proper season reduces the demand for out of season fruits and vegetables. Mega farms often use harmful practices that damage the earth in order to provide produce out of season, so keep this in mind. Watching what you eat from season to season reduces the impact of harmful chemicals because of decreased demand for that produce item. Additionally, it supports your local economy because it boosts business for local farmers who often provide cheaper and cleaner produce.

Save the bees.

Believe it or not, it takes more than soil, water, and sunshine to make the world green. According to an article published by The Penn State Extension, at least 30 percent of the world’s crops and 90 percent of all plants require cross-pollination to thrive. Bees are pollinating powerhouses, yet many bee species are declining in population due to rapid development, abandoned farms, and diminishing flowers. Some colonies collapse due to consuming plant or seed matter laced with pesticides.
You can help prevent further decline of the bee population in your area by planting more flowers that the bee population requires for survival. Do some research about the kinds of bees in your area as well as the types of plants they need most. Make sure to use only nonharmful fertilization and pesticide treatments on your plants.

Conserve energy.

All energy sources have some level of impact on our environment. Coal oil and natural gas cause more harm than renewable energy in many ways such as air and water pollution, damage to public health, wildlife loss, and much more.
Reducing your use of energy alone will not impact the environment much, but if you do it and encourage others to as well, that’s how a movement begins! Taking steps to reduce your energy consumption and spreading the word for others to do the same, will reduce the demand for harmful energy.


Recycling is such an easy thing to do, yet so many don’t bother to do it. Reusing materials and properly disposing of harmful ones is an essential step toward protecting our world. With dozens of recycling facilities and most cities offering recycle pickup, there are few available excuses for not recycling.
Before tossing your garbage in the nearest trashcan, take an extra second to look around for a recycling receptacle. Many cities have now provided recycling bins right next to public trashcans.
You can also shop with the environment in mind! Consider purchasing more used items throughout the year. Every new product you purchase leaves a footprint on the environment because making new products requires mineral mining and manufacturing plants that consume exorbitant amounts of energy. Practice doing a bit of thrifting when it makes sense for you.
Hopefully, these ideas will get you started on helping to heal our earth, but if you still have concerns about recycling and eco-friendly living in general, Carolina Fibre is here to help. Check out our blog for more tips or contact us today!