There’s never a bad time to try to live more sustainably, but the change in seasons from summer to fall opens the door to even more opportunities to be eco-friendly. From picking your own produce to yard work, these are some simple things you can do to go green while the leaves are turning brown.
Turn down the thermostat
It might not seem like it right now when the temperature is still pushing 90, but the weather will begin to chill soon! When it finally does cool down, switch off the A/C and open the windows to keep your home comfortable. When we reach cold days, try to keep your thermostat at 68 degrees. Your heating system operates the most efficiently at this setting, reducing the amount of energy required to warm your home.
Clean and Test Your Furnace
Cleaning your furnace is probably the last thing on your mind when making your chore list, but it needs it! Furnaces can collect a LOT of dust and debris, which can not only hurt the furnace’s performance but is also a fire hazard. Replacing the filter regularly and getting your furnace serviced once a year saves you money on your heating bill and reduces energy consumption.
Donate old clothes
Take a note from Marie Kondo and use the changing seasons as an excuse to clean out your closets. When you’re stowing your swimsuits and sorting through your sweaters, make a pile of everything you no longer actually wear. Donate your gently used items so that they can be re-worn by someone else. Any items that are in too poor of condition can be given to H&M to be repurposed as cloths or insulation, as part of their zero-waste mission.
Visit a pick-your-own farm
Fall is when many foods reach their peak season, and a great time to take a trip to a pick-your-own-farm. Apple picking is a classic autumn activity, but that’s not the only produce you can nab fresh from the farm!
There are a variety of pick-your-own farms in and around St. Louis that offer everything from fruits to flowers to veggies. Local foods are more fresh, more delicious and leave a smaller carbon footprint, which is why our own Eclipse restaurant sources many ingredients from local producers.
Preserve your garden goods
If you grow your own food or picked up too large of a haul at the farms, preserving the harvest is essential for reducing food waste. Canning fruits and vegetables lets you enjoy seasonal produce year-round without having to rely on products shipped in from thousands of miles away. If you’ve got an herb garden, you can move some plants indoors for the winter dry and store your other herbs for use throughout the winter.
Do a little yard work
Fall means dead leaves – lots of them. We all love the smell, but burning leaves is harmful to the environment, as the smoke contains harmful chemicals like carbon monoxide and toxic particulates. Filling up yard waste bins isn’t ideal either, as it takes up major space at landfills. Start a compost pile, or use the leaves to protect your garden over the cold winter! You can also plant some types of trees and shrubs in the fall, giving them time to develop a deep root system over the winter and reduce their water needs in spring.
Check your tires
Cooling temperatures can lower tire pressure. When you drive on under-inflated tires, your car’s fuel efficiency is reduced. Stop by an air pump and inflate your tires to the proper pressure. You might even consider whether it’s time to rotate your tires, which can extend your tire life and improve your gas mileage.
All of these are great ways to go green at home, but you can keep your eco-friendly practices rolling when you’re on the road too with our easy, eco-friendly travel tips! At The Moonrise, we try to do our part for the environment every day with green hotel practices such as our property-wide recycling program and composting efforts, and by powering portions of the hotel with our solar-paneled roof. We want our guests to feel good about their time with us