IMG_2459.jpg

Earth: not only our home, but also arguably of the most beautiful planets in our solar system. Every day, we have the pleasure of waking up and looking out at the diversity our world has to offer.

With Earth Day approaching on April 22, it's time to reflect on and celebrate our planet. Unfortunately, eco-friendly partying until sundown may not be an option this year. This is a major bummer, but don’t fret! There are still ways we can show love for planet Earth and stay safe from COVID-19.

1. Take a secluded walk

If you live out in the countryside like I do, a nice walk through Mother Nature would show your appreciation for Earth and allow you to get some fresh air. If you’re quarantined with someone, bring them along for the ride! But be sure to steer clear of other people and practice germ prevention. Clean up when you get home to be sure you’re clean.

2. Clean up your yard

If there is trash or weeds taking over your green grass, take some time to clean it up. Trim your bushes, pluck weeds or water dying plants, just take care of your little space if you have one!

3. Start a garden 

Now that nicer weather is moving in, this is the perfect time to prepare your garden. Whether it’s fruits, vegetables, flowers or other plants, give back to the earth while getting your own goodies. Be sure to use materials that are safe and helpful to the environment. Do your research before choosing pesticides or fertilizers!

4. Practice using less single-use materials

It’s hard to find anything sustainable during these tough times, but do your best to reduce the amount of plastics you’re using. Instead of buying Styrofoam plates, buy reusable ceramic or heavy plastic plates that can be washed. If you’re the one making the grocery trip, take reusable bags instead of using the plastic bags at the store. If you have plastics that can be recycled, bag them or box them up for after quarantine.

5. Water your plants

I have several plants inside my house that I sometimes forget about. What better way to celebrate the Earth than by finally watering your thirsty flowers and ferns? Move them into the light if they need it, give them a healthy amount of water and help them come back to life.

6. Look through eco-friendly online stores

If you have that itch to spend money but can’t leave the house, why not try taking a break from Amazon? There are several brands with online stores that donate portions of money to conservation and cleanup around the world. Stores like EarthHero and Made Trade offer everything from home goods to clothing and accessories that are all eco-friendly. Sand Cloud sells metal straws, reusable drinkware, shirts and towels that are sustainable. A portion of the cost goes to help a variety of ocean cleanup organizations.

7. Do some research on Earth Day about how you can help every day

While Earth Day is technically only once a year, you can make everyday Earth Day. Earthday.org offers not only information on climate change, global cleanup and several other topics, but also gives you opportunities to pitch in and give back. You can find activities near you or send money to support people all over the world who are doing their part.

No matter how you celebrate Earth Day from home, being educated and aware is the most important thing you could do. Learn about how you can help and practice eco-friendly habits. Enjoy your day of celebration safely and happily!

Features reporter Taylor Metcalf can be reached at 270-745-6291 and taylor.metcalf496@topper.wku.edu.

Taylor Metcalf is a Features reporter for the College Heights Herald. She has worked with the Features team for one year.