Umbra Fisk

Ask Umbra®

Advice for Living Green

Yours is to wonder why, hers is to answer (or try). Send your green-living questions to Umbra.

For even more green goodness, you can follow Umbra on Twitter (@AskUmbra) or become a fan on Facebook.

Umbra Fisk is Grist Research Associate II, Hardcover and Periodicals Unit, floors 2B-4B.

hung out to dry

Do I have to hang up my gardening tools during the drought?

A reader wonders if her green thumb has to go for the sake of saving water. Umbra says she can grow her kale and eat it, too.

Living

How much water does a lawn really need?

A reader frets that her employer runs the sprinklers non-stop. Umbra says over-watering is a total turnoff.

Living

Do I really need to rinse my recyclables?

A reader wonders if he should bust out the scrub brush. Umbra says he'd be nutella not to.

Living

What kind of laundry soap is lightest on the land?

A reader wonders whether to go with liquid or powder. Umbra gives him the straight scoop.

Living

Will I poison myself if I reuse this plastic water bottle?

A reader tries to ease his bottled-water guilt by using the bottle more than once. Umbra tells him to put a cork in it.

it's electric

What’s better for zipping around town, electric carts or gas?

A reader kicks the tires on neighborhood electric vehicles. Umbra gets supercharged.

Living

Is it really OK to pour paint down the drain?

A reader wonders if it's really safe to wash his paint brushes in the sink. Umbra gives him the three-bucket challenge.

get the lead out

What’s the best way to dispose of an old car battery?

A reader's battery has shuffled off this mortal coil. Umbra says Mexican recycling plants make calamity of so long a life.

Living

Ask Umbra: Is the Ice Bucket Challenge a waste of water and money?

A reader wonders how much water has been wasted to raise money for ALS. Umbra says it's a drop in the bucket.

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