Dear Dot ™

Dear Dot is here to answer all your sustainable living questions from her perch on the porch. Got a question for Dot? Send her a note for a chance to be featured in an upcoming post.

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Dear Dot: Is Organic Food Really Better?

Dear Dot, I’m a Harvard alum and a recent article in the Gazette indicated that organic food is no better than conventionally grown. What say you, Dot?  –David The Short Answer: There are many factors that determine if organic...

Dear Dot: What are Some Gift Alternatives to Store-Bought Stuff?

Dear Dot, While there are things I love about the holidays, the rampant consumerism depresses me. But friends and family still expect me to give them something. Any suggestions? —Steph The Short Answer: There are many ways to...

Dear Dot: Does Wildfire Smoke Affect the Color of Hydrangea?

Dear Dot, I noticed on the Vineyard this summer that the usual bluey-purple hydrangeas were mostly pink or white. We were affected by wildfire smoke from Canada, and it was a rainy July. Did that impact...

Dear Dot: How Can I Tackle an Ant Problem Without Toxic Pest Control?

Dear Dot, Did you run an article about ants? I am unable to stop the swarm in my kitchen. Have tried Terro which has always worked for me in the past, but my bottle might be...

Dear Dot: Is Grass or Grain-Fed Beef Better for Emissions?

Dear Dot, I recently read that grass-fed beef is not better than grain-fed for greenhouse gas emissions and, in fact, may be worse. What does Dot know about that? –Robert, Chilmark Dear Robert, What Dot knows is that, many...

Dear Dot: Where Can I Find Earth-Friendly Sheets?

Dear Dot, I’m looking for bed sheets that are both happy to sleep on, and aren’t bad news for our environment. What should I look for? —Dawn My dear Dawn, Are you the same Dawn who wanted to deter...

Dear Dot: How Do I Dispose of Leftover Paint?

Dear Dot, Thanks for telling me about what to look for in eco-friendly paint, but how can I responsibly dispose of any leftover paint when I’m done?  —Frances The Short Answer: The best use for leftover paint is...

Dear Dot: Does Being Vegan or Vegetarian Help the Environment?

Dear Dot, How much does being a vegan or vegetarian help the environment?  –Jessica The Short Answer: Put simply, Jessica, veganism and vegetarianism offer a clear environmental advantage over meat consumption.  Dear Jessica,  Dot’s eldest daughter once had a friend...

Dear Dot: What Are My Eco-Options for Valentine’s Day Flowers?

Dear Dot, With Valentine's Day coming up, I have to wonder: Is there such a thing as sustainable floral delivery? —Liza Dearest Liza, When my first child was born, a friend sent me an enormous bouquet of white lilies....

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Dear Dot: Is Organic Food Really Better?

Dear Dot, I’m a Harvard alum and a recent article in the Gazette indicated that organic food is no better than conventionally grown. What say...

Favorite Read: The Climate Book Club

Sue Hruby writes:  My favorite book club is the Climate Book Club — admirably supported by the wonderful WT Library — supplying us with books...

Quiz: Long Live Trees

How long does it take a newly planted tree to replace the carbon sequestration of a mature tree?  Five years Ten years Twenty years

Inventing the Electric Lobster Boat

Can an electric lobster fishing boat get a full day’s work done off the coast of Nova Scotia? A group of researchers, non-profits, and...

RECIPE: Quick Chicken Liver Pâté

Whipping chicken livers into a tasty and decadent pâté that can be spread on toast or served with fresh veggies makes it an easy snack.