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For The Home

Recycled Straw Rug

Author: Shawndrea Corbin
Issue: October, 2013, Page 40
Photo by Garrett Cook

Last Straw

The Lhasa rug (shown in orange and violet) by Fab Habitat is woven of recycled plastic straws and comes in four sizes. The reversible rug can be shaken or hosed off for cleaning and is not affected by moisture; hence, it does not attract mildew. Because of its light weight, the rug should be anchored by furniture or attached to the ground with specially designed Velcro when used outdoors.

The mat is crafted to resemble a traditional kilim design, with the colored straws placed strategically to achieve the desired geometric pattern. All rugs are made within Fair Trade standards, which consist of following such principles as “the creation of opportunities for economically disadvantaged producers.” Available in royal blue and chocolate brown and empire yellow and gray colorways as well, each rug comes in an eco-friendly jute bag. Check them out at


Founded by Phoenix residents Corey and Rochelle Abramowitz, Gardenfly is an online platform created to connect local gardeners who have excess harvests with resident “foodies” searching for locally grown produce. Founded on grassroots efforts, the site now has more than 250 active users. The website is divided into local groups, by neighborhood, city or state. Users start by creating a profile describing what they need and/or can offer to the community. Members can connect and post “shout-outs” to one another on anything from photos of gardens to soil/compost tips and shared recipes. A private messenger system can be used in place of posting in the public forums.

Website categories such as “Why Garden?” and “Why Eat Local?” highlight community benefits that include encouraging others to begin gardening, sharing knowledge and discussing ideas. The site also is in the process of incorporating an interactive map, gardening- and food-related tools, access to master gardeners for assistance and other ways to encourage community engagement.

According to the site, “There has been a shift in demand for local food, yet there are fewer farmers today than ever before. Believe it or not, almost half of American households are growing food in some capacity. That means that if you’re not growing food, your neighbor just might be. Gardenfly empowers gardeners and helps foodies gain access to local foods by leveraging the most local source we know—our neighborly gardeners.”
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