Here are some unconventional ideas for the green dad on your list. For some dads, of course, a home improvement gift is a bit like getting a mixer for mom’s day, but, just like a primo Kitchen Aid mixer is a great gift for a baking mom, these gifts can be killer choices for dads who love to tinker and save.
Here’s a cool toy for the energy sleuth on your list:
Kill a Watt Electricity Monitor. Monitoring systems for gauging energy use usually require pro installation, but this small device lets you see the effect of plugging in and unplugging appliances right away. A small LCD screen shows you electricity usage, cost, and projections over weeks, month and year so you can decide if it’s time to upgrade that old fridge.
One thing you might find in your sleuthing is that many “always on” appliances are eating significant amounts of juice. Now there are a number of power strips on the market that turn these off on a Timer. Of course, you don’t want your Tivo or your clock radio off at 3 AM, but maybe your living room receiver or rec room TV. Consider the GE Power Strip Timer. $20 on Amazon.
The Eyemax WB radio receives AM, FM, and the US/Canada Weather Band, and acts as a speaker system for your iPod/MP3 player. It has both a solar panel and the ability to power it yourself when needed. It also includes an integrated LED flashlight. The Eyemax WB 2009 is a radio that you and your family can depend on, anytime, anywhere, any weather. Freeplay Solar Radio Eyemax Weather Band • $80.00 at www.SustainStores.com.
A truly easy, convenient way to compost. Just place your organic waste in the drum, spin every so often, and soon you have amazingly rich and garden-growing compost. A perfect choice for those not interested in an open compost pile–more discreet and no smell. The Envirocycle produces two excellent compost fertilizers, both solid and liquid. Comes with complete instructions. This item ships directly from the manufacturer via Standard Ground Shipping only. Envirocycle Composter • $140There is an additional shipping and handling charge of $30.00 at www.SustainStores.com.
Just let the worms do their work in their Worm Farm inside or outside and at the bottom you’ll get worm tea, perfect for enriching the soil of your garden and create super-growing plants. Use Red Wiggler Worms, which are not included. First fill your Worm Farm with bedding: leaves, shredded paper and dirt, for example. After the worms have moved in, start feeding them you all your organic kitchen waste like coffee grounds, leafy green trimmings and eggshells. Soon you’ll have worm castings (otherwise known as “black gold” for gardens) in the bottom of the bin. Collect, and watch your plants act like they’re on steroids, completely naturally. Lid keeps worms covered, maintaining the dry bedding they thrive in, yet roof is ventilated for worm comfort. High Strength. 4 Trays. Made from recycled material. This item ships directly from the manufacturer via Standard Ground Shipping only. Guasanito 4-Tray Worm Composter • $68.95 at www.SustainStores.com
For other green dad gift ideas, check out www.SustainStores.com. Use discount code “sustain” in the keycode section of the checkout form for a 20% discount off everything (the discount will be confirmed in an email after the order is processed.) This code expires June 21, Father’s Day.