Living out in the country can be a relaxing, rewarding experience. Making a home for yourself in the open, green nature away from all the commotion and pollution of a big city or the gradual loss of identity in some towns can be refreshing and offer a significant change of pace for those who are tired of urban living.
A farmhouse is one of the best abodes to live in out rurally, offering ample space and great functionality for you and your family. Although they don’t need to be on a farm, living in one can make you feel like you’re living a nature-connected farm life.
However, while a farmhouse might sound like an environmentally friendly option by default, that isn’t necessarily the case. Read on to learn the importance of environmental awareness and what to do to make your farmhouse more green.
Awareness and concern over the environment are a big part of modern life. Due to recent weather changes and increasing temperatures worldwide, more people than ever have become attuned to climate change and want to prevent it from progressing.
The most significant contributor to climate change is greenhouse gas, primarily carbon dioxide, or CO2. Although some greenhouse gas is necessary to prevent the earth from being frigid and desolate, when more carbon dioxide is produced than trees and plants can absorb, it causes global warming.
A lot of things produce carbon dioxide, and that includes electricity usage. Most electricity is produced by burning fossil fuels rather than using a renewable, lower-impact source. Furthermore, plunging the planet’s natural resources to make “new” things rather than recycling them contributes to CO2 emissions and tarnishes natural land.
However, there are active efforts to switch over to greener sources of energy and waste less resources. And you can help push for that switch by making some smart choices with your farmhouse.
Buying or making furniture made of sustainable wood is a great way to start making your farmhouse more environmentally friendly. Several different kinds of wood are great for this purpose.
Reclaimed wood furniture is an excellent option since it uses wood from demolished buildings or other pieces of furniture rather than cutting down another tree for its wood. Pinewood and driftwood are some standard options for reclaimed wood.
Durable wood options are also great since they won’t need to be replaced as often. Teak wood and black cherry wood make excellent, long-lasting, low-waste furniture choices.
Another great way to reduce waste is to look at thrift stores, second-hand shops, or online resale marketplaces like eBay or Mercari for used furniture.
A shocking amount of unused furniture and decor go to waste in landfills, even if they’re in fantastic condition. Choosing not to make everything you get something “new” can help prevent that and is resource-conscious.
Garage and estate sales are also excellent places to look for used furniture. Contacting friends looking to replace their furniture and see if they’re willing to give or sell any of their old things to you is also a great idea.
Although not everyone who owns a farmhouse is a farmer, if you farm and work with grains, growing more sustainable varieties can help reduce your footprint on the world.
Purchasing seeds for perennial grains is a smart way to reduce the impact of your grain operations. Perennial grains such as Kernza grow and produce usable grains for two or more years, rather than traditional grains that only grow for a season and then need to be replanted.
As mentioned above, electricity usage plays a big part in environmental issues. Putting windows in strategic places to maximize natural light can help reduce how much electricity you use for lighting.
As for lightbulbs, trading traditional bulbs for LED ones is the way to go, as LEDs provide more light with less power.
These are just a few ways you can make your farmhouse eco-friendlier. Other things, such as switching out older appliances with more energy-efficient ones, being smart with water usage, and nurturing the plants and other flora near your farmhouse can help, too.
When you make these changes, not only will you be doing your part to help support environmentally aware operations, but you’ll feel better, too, as eco-friendly design has been shown to have health benefits.
Written by Taylor McKnight, Author for Summit Contracting