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 issue.

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Dear Dot: But what about (road) salt?

Dear Dot, Can I put salt on my sidewalk or paths to get rid of ice? If not, why not? What alternatives work best? –Mark, Edgartown Dear Mark, Two decades ago, the house Mr. Dot and I bought to...

Dear Dot: Where should I donate?

Dear Dot, One of my New Year’s resolutions is to donate to environmental causes. But where is my money best spent?  —Les, Tisbury Dear Les, When I was just a little Dot, McDonald’s restaurants offered a kit to host...

Dear Dot: Are carbon offsets a flight of fancy?

Dear Dot After almost two years of staying put during COVID, I flew to California to see friends and family on JetBlue. The captain proudly announced that Jet Blue had a carbon offset program so that...

Dear Dot: What’s the greenest Christmas Tree?

Dear Dot, I know the old fake Christmas trees are awful, made of petroleum products and the souls of children. But what about the new fakes, made of recycled plastic bottles? They’re good, right? —Max, Vineyard Haven Dear...

Dear Dot: Should I bother with solar panels?

Dear Dot, I was considering getting solar panels on my roof but with the approval of Vineyard Wind, should I bother? And how will Vineyard Wind affect my power bill?  Charlotte Duncan, Edgartown Dear Charlotte, Seems a number of...

Dear Dot: What to do about all our damn packaging?

Dear Dot, Is there any service on the island for recycling soft plastics? We get a lot of packages in the mail, and it would be an excellent thing to have somewhere to process all the...

Dear Dot: Can we give the leaf-blowers a vacation?

Dear Dot, My wife hates leaf blowers. I love them. Is there a solution that doesn’t involve divorce lawyers? DK, Vineyard Haven Dear DK, Ah the sounds of fall, when the squeals of osprey give way to the whine...

Dear Dot: Is there a wildlife-friendly way to get rid of mice?

Dear Dot, About 15 years ago my house sitter threw away all the mouse poison I had left around our barn and the outside of our home. She rightly pointed out that I was potentially killing...

Dear Dot: Can I assist migrating birds?

Dear Dot,  I’ve been enjoying the birds that are making their way south. Is there anything I can do to help make their trip better? Elle G., Vineyard Haven Dear Elle, Though the Vineyard tends to miss a lot...

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Right at Home: Two Sisters Build Green

Editors’ note: The sisters preferred not to be named in this story.  The story begins in a familiar way. Martha’s Vineyard is the site of...

Room for Change: Rugs

I have never liked wall-to-wall carpeting. But a night on the carpet of the Delhi airport sealed the deal. I landed in Delhi around...

Wild Caught: There’s Plenty of Fish in the Sea Surrounding M.V.

“My grandfather built this boat in the mid to late ’30s,” says Denny Jason, Jr., a second-generation fisherman, standing next to The Little Lady,...

RECIPE: Black Sea Bass Piccata

For more information on sourcing fresh local fish, and more recipes, check out "Wild Caught." Eating fish that are plentiful and in season goes a...

RECIPE: Sea Scallops with Parsnip Puree and Herbs

For more information on sourcing fresh local fish, and more recipes, check out "Wild Caught." Pristine sea scallops arrive at Vineyard fish docks daily, caught...