Win Solar Lighting from aHa!Modern Living

by Seasonal Wisdom on April 5, 2011

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When it comes to outdoor lighting, why settle for the ordinary? Especially, when you can wow them in the garden with these elegant solar lanterns? These Soji lights may evoke delicate Japanese paper lanterns, but they’ll stand up well in your garden.  Best of all, aHa! Modern Living is giving away one for free in today’s Spring Fling Garden Giveaway!

With the help of the sun’s light, these Soji solar lanterns will shine down on your evening outdoor activities. Hang one on a tree in the backyard. Or line up several from your porch or pergula to cast romantic lighting for summer dining al fresco.

It couldn’t be easier to set up this lantern. There aren’t any cords to connect. Instead, the lantern’s solar panels feed a AAA battery to power an energy-efficient LED light. So, as the sun goes down, the Soji lantern lights up.

This cool solar light is just one of the innovative home and garden products at aHa! Modern Living. Designed to make outdoor living simple, beautiful and accessible, this online store is the brainchild of Jayme Jenkins. You may remember that Jayme is my podcast co-host on Nest In Style, as well as the author of a new book called Garden Rules.

At aHa! Modern Living, you’ll find lots of contemporary designs and modern garden accessories to dress up your home and outdoors.  From sophisticated bird houses to chic tabletop accessories to colorful tea towels, there’s something for everyone on your gift list.

Today’s Spring Fever Garden Giveaway Prize: One solar powered Soji lantern from aHa! Modern Living. Suggested retail price: $39.00. (But currently on sale for a short time! Only $29.25.)

How To Enter: It’s easy. Just comment below and tell us how you are trying to be more earth-friendly in your home and garden. Whether you’re encouraging beneficial bugs, sowing organic seeds or using solar lighting in the garden, we want to hear from you. But hurry! This contest ends tonight at midnight PT, April 5, 2011. Please note: this random drawing is open to US and Canadian citizens. Be sure to leave me a way to reach you, in case you win. Good luck!

What’s Coming: Win more great prizes during the Spring Fever Garden Giveaway. Tomorrow, garden legend P. Allen Smith is giving away photo-packed  Garden How-To Cards to get your garden off to a good start.  You’ll also get a mix of all-natural soil-conditioning teas from Authentic Haven Brand’s family ranch. Just another way to keep your garden  green. That’s one prize package you won’t want to miss! In fact, Seasonal Wisdom is hosting giveaways every single day this week, so you have lots of chances to win.

Even More: Since we’re talking about earth-friendly gardening practices, you might want to visit Thanks for Today. This blog is running a sustainable living project that encourages gardeners to spread the word about keeping Mother Nature green. Plus, she’s giving away a lot of great products. Don’t miss it!


Diana Goings April 5, 2011 at 6:35 am

To benefit the Earth this year I have just completed a Beekeeping class and will be putting out my start of Honey Bees this week! I have also put up Mason bee housing and Mason Bee Larvae in straws. I have added bee friendly flowers and have planted new fruit trees for them to polinate.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 6:58 am

Hi Diana: That’s great that you are supporting the bees. They are so important for our food’s pollination, and yet they are disappearing at a rapid rate. Good for you! And good luck with both the bees and the giveaway.

Lorraine April 5, 2011 at 6:47 am

I use cloth napkins, never plastic items, any organic food left over goes by my brook for any animals that are hungry…my waste is very minimal.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 6:58 am

Lorraine: Reducing your daily waste is an excellent way to be more earth friendly. Good luck in this giveaway, and come back for more prizes every day this week.

Cami Sartori April 5, 2011 at 6:59 am

I am trying to be more earth friendly by growing a organic garden. Everything that I am using is organic. I cant wait to see the outcome.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 7:03 am

Cami: Good luck with your organic garden, and hope you have a terrific harvest this year. Thanks for entering this giveaway.

Shannon April 5, 2011 at 7:05 am

Because I work in a botanical garden, I’ve learned lots of “green” gardening practices. I’m limited on space with just a lanai so I’ve used some vertical planters made from recycled products and then planted a variety of herbs so that I have my own for all my cooking! It’s wonderful and it makes my porch smell fantastic.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 7:30 am

Lucky you, Shannon, to work at a botanical garden. I bet you’ve learned a lot. Vertical gardens are so popular this year. In fact, my friends Susan L. Morrison and Rebecca Sweet just wrote a book called “Garden Up!” about that topic. I can just imagine how great those herbs smell. Thanks for sharing. Good luck!

Mary Bachmayer April 5, 2011 at 7:19 am

I live in a townhome, but my tiny garden is organic and I save all my yard and kitchen waste for my neighbor’s composter. Recently changed lightbulbs to the energy-efficient ones and told myself to “get used to the new color.”

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 7:28 am

Good for you, Mary. I love tiny gardens. They’re easier to maintain too. And it’s great you are saving your waste too. Thanks for doing your part to keep the earth green, and for entering this giveaway. Good luck!

Jessica April 5, 2011 at 7:41 am

I just moved from Portland and had a beautiful all organic, chemical free garden there. I now am trying to figure out my local climate so I can start at least putting some veggies and herbs in. I miss being able to cook out of my backyard! I also grew tons of veggies and donated some to the food bank and preserved/froze produce for winter. Can’t wait to get that all started again. I’ve already started composting here to reduce waste and create some good mulch, as I did in Portland.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 11:36 am

Jessica: Good luck with your new garden. That’s a wonderful idea to donate your extra vegetables to the Food Bank. I’m hoping to do the same this year too. Thanks for entering our drawing today. Don’t forget to stop by all week for more chances to win prizes.

Kylee from Our Little Acre April 5, 2011 at 7:57 am

I actually talked my husband into not using a general weed killer for our lawn this spring. This is HUGE! We have our own well, so I worry about the chemicals making their way into the ground water and into that. We also have cats and of course, the usual insects and birds and native wildlife. The thought of them walking around in that bothers me. So we may have more weeds and crabgrass, but they’re green too, and I feel better about not having those nasty chemicals around!

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 11:35 am

Hi Kylee: Congrats on no longer using general weed killer in the garden. Have you considered using corn gluten meal in the fall and spring? It works well too. Here’s information from the Iowa State University Extension Program on corn gluten meal research. Thanks for stopping by and good luck in the drawing today.

Judi Brawer April 5, 2011 at 9:00 am

To be more earth-friendly I have been getting rid of my grass and replacing it with drought tolerant plants, rock and yard sculpture. Last summer I was able to turn off a number of sprinklers and converted my garden sprinklers to a drip system. My friends and I are going to have a plant exchange – each of us thinning out our plants and having a get together to choose from each others clippings/thinnings. I am also going to head to the North End Nursery this weekend for ladybugs!

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 11:32 am

Judi: I’m working on doing all those things in my garden as well. Too bad I didn’t think to call you with my perennial divisions. But there’s always next year. Thanks for entering the drawing, and good luck!

Robin April 5, 2011 at 9:03 am

From removing lawn to growing more food to keeping honeybees and so much more, my garden is always growing morefor thebenefit of our planet.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 11:31 am

That’s right, Robin. You do keep honeybees. That’s certainly great for the environment. Thanks for visiting, and good luck today!

Tom M April 5, 2011 at 9:31 am

We’ve been trying to be ‘Green’ for a few years now. We have a 4’x8′ compost bin that has also become a great worm home, so we use the worms in our raised beds. Newspaper get shredded for the compost, and to line flower pots. We’re using Annie Haven’s Manure tea as our soil conditioner, and we’re trying to switch out to all organic/non-GMO seed. Thanks for the chance at the lamp!

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 11:30 am

Tom: You sound like you’re doing a lot for the planet in your garden. Thanks for entering this random drawing, and good luck!

Stacie April 5, 2011 at 9:35 am

Hard to choose just one way in which we are trying to be more earth-friendly in our home & garden. With a 7-year old son, its an everyday goal of ours to teach him that lifestyle. Currently we are working on an outdoor space in our backyard vegetable garden area that we can enjoy during the hot summer Arizona months instead of holing up in the air-conditioned house… a key earth-friendly component is that all of the furniture (wicker chairs, table, etc.) are re-used and re-cycled from second-hand stores.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 11:30 am

Stacie: How great that you’re teaching your young son to appreciate nature at such a young age. Bravo! Thanks for entering the drawing and good luck!

Jan (Thanks for today.) April 5, 2011 at 11:34 am

We have cancelled our contract with our lawn co. this year, and will do the maintenance ourselves. My husband has always cut the lawn but we had a company come in and aerate as well as re-seed/over-seed, along with adding fertilizer and who-knows-what chemicals. No more! They said it was organic but I just wasn’t sure and no longer put my trust in them. Thank you for mentioning my giveaway here. I hope your readers will drop by. It runs through April 15th. It’s an Earth Day giveaway;-)

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 11:41 am

Well good for you, Jan. Who knows what many of them spray on those lawns? Meanwhile, good luck with your wonderful promotion, and hope you get lots of traffic too.

Lara April 5, 2011 at 11:59 am

We have a rainbarrel that we use to collect water & use in the garden!

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 12:28 pm

Good for you, Lara. Wherever we can save natural resources like water is always a positive thing. Thanks for entering and lots of luck!

Michael Nolan April 5, 2011 at 12:01 pm

I made the conscious decision to not use any chemicals whatsoever on our homestead property. If nature couldn’t make it on her own, it doesn’t belong in my gardens.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 12:34 pm

Whoa, Michael. You really are gardening all natural there. Good luck in the giveaway, and thanks for stopping by.

Kerry April 5, 2011 at 12:05 pm

I am using my natural tendencies towards sloth to make me “greener.” I’m going to mow my lawn less, water my plants less, make my kids ride their bikes instead of giving them rides. I will also do less laundry. It’s a win-win situation!

Love those lights.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 12:33 pm

Hi Kerry: Anything that encourages kids to exercise more these days is a great idea. Enjoy your garden this season. And thanks for entering.

Derek April 5, 2011 at 12:10 pm

Whenever a lightbulb burns out in our house, I replace it with an LED version. Less wasted energy and cheaper energy bills!

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 12:32 pm

Thanks Derek! Good luck in the giveaway and don’t forget we’re having prizes every single day this week.

Jules April 5, 2011 at 12:11 pm

Raising free ranging chickens for eggs. All kitchen scraps/garden waste goes to the chickens, they are my composters… lol. The chicken waste is then spread on the garden then tilled in. I use no chemical fertilizers or weed killers on any of our garden. Most of our plants are heirlooms so I usually save seed for next years crop. Planting more hardwood trees this year, definitely more birds being attracted by the trees and many more species. Have started a small orchard with pear, apple and cherry trees; will be adding 2 more apple trees this spring. I have turkey and goose eggs in my incubator… hope to use them as weeders/bug eaters in my orchard area. Planted a 50 foot section of Amercian Bittersweet along our property line as a wind screen as well as for the beautiful fruit it bears in the fall.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 12:31 pm

Wow Jules: I’m impressed. You have a great system set up there. I bet that small orchard is lovely in the spring, as the flowering trees start to bloom. Good luck in the giveaway.

Anna Webb April 5, 2011 at 12:18 pm

OK, so it’s still a little chilly, but in the interest of eating local, eating simple, I planted my first vegetables of the season yesterday: four little rainbow chard. I’m sure they’re appreciating the rain today.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 12:30 pm

Anna, best of luck with your rainbow chard. Personally, I’m loving this rain in our area. There are so many little seedlings in my garden eager for the moisture. Thanks for entering this random drawing, and don’t forget there are giveaways every day this week.

Miki Wright April 5, 2011 at 12:35 pm

There are so many green things we do: Recycling, composting, organic gardening, chicken raising, turn thermostat down/up (seasonally), glass storage bowls, no plastic bottles or jars, rain barrel, no lawn chemicals, cloth napkins and tea towels, earth-friendly soaps and detergents… And it all saves us money while we are “saving” the planet!

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 12:39 pm

Miki: You are doing so many things right. Congratulations! Thanks for entering this giveaway, and sharing all these great ideas.

Daisy April 5, 2011 at 2:28 pm

More earth friendly in home and garden – I incorporate a lot of green living into our family life, so adding something new isn’t always easy. Right now it’s still cold out, despite it being April, so I turned down the heat by 2 additional degrees and resigned myself to a few more weeks of sweatshirts and long sleeved shirts. Sigh. It’ll save us money and energy.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 2:49 pm

Daisy, we’re the same way here with the heat. But I don’t mind too much. I sleep better when it’s a bit cooler anyway. And spring is coming! Thanks for entering the giveaway.

Gisele April 5, 2011 at 4:28 pm

I encourage beneficial bugs by planting host plants for them, I compost all our garden and kitchen waste and all of our yard and garden lighting is solar…..Love finding new organic and planet friendly products! Now we are thinking about getting chickens…Can’t wait !!! Thanks so much for all your great advice and info!!

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 4:31 pm

Gisele: You’re doing lots of excellent earth-friendly things already. Good luck in the giveaway, and thanks for stopping by.

Andrea Bellamy April 5, 2011 at 4:43 pm

I LOVE these lanterns! (In fact, I’ve blogged about them at least a few times.) MUST. HAVE. :)

How am I trying to be earth-friendly? Where do I start? Of course, I do all the basics (recycle, garden organically, eat less meat, use energy-efficient bulbs, etc.) but I think my biggest contribution is through my work as a garden writer and speaker… spreading the good word on organic living and gardening! And of course, raising my daughter to love the planet :)

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 5:44 pm

Hi Andrea: Aren’t these lanterns the best? I bought one last year, and the lantern has stood up well so far. As a fellow member of the writer-speaker/organic living and gardening lifestyle crowd, I agree your work is an important contribution. Thanks for helping to spread the word about local foods and edible gardening. And your daughter is a lucky girl to grow up with such excellent produce right at home. Good luck in the giveaway.

Ivette Soler April 5, 2011 at 5:00 pm

I have doubled down on throwing ALL of my dishwater into the garden rather than letting it go down the drain. The only water I let go down the drain is greasy water from sautee pans. I’ve also started making my own dog food, eliminating cans and packaged food for little Sadie (and she looks better than ever!) Oh and I am recycling my leggings by knitting them into a super bitchin’ shawl. I know that sounds like a joke, but I’m REALLY doing it! Fun and green!
I KNOW I won’t win because I never win ANYTHING, but I just won a doorprize at Rebecca’s Meet-Up at SFGS … so I used up my winning karma. DAMN!!!! XOXO

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 5:40 pm

Ivette, I love the picture of you wearing a handknit shawl, while making your own dog food for little Sadie. Very earth-friendly. Good luck in the giveaway!!

Patricia C April 5, 2011 at 8:04 pm

I’m using a compost bin this year & I’m going to use natural remedies to rid my garden of pests. I just read that coffee grinds keep slugs at bay, and slugs are my #1 garden pest

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 8:30 pm

Hi Patricia: Composting is such a great way to turn those kitchen scraps into black gold for the garden. Hope you find success fighting the slugs with various natural methods. Thanks for entering the giveaway. Good luck.

Lisa Lynch April 5, 2011 at 8:38 pm


Love the site, I can’t wait to start my garden and put some of your wisdom to use.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 9:03 pm

Thanks, Lisa. Glad to know you found the blog helpful. Hope to see you again.

Cheri Schorr April 5, 2011 at 9:03 pm

I’m going to try some companion planting. We have an asparagus bed and I’m going to plant some parsley next to it and tomatoes. I’m looking for other combinations to try.

Teresa O'Connor April 5, 2011 at 9:13 pm

Cheri, Good luck with your companion planting. Onions and other alliums are good near many veggies, except beans and peas. Thanks for dropping by, and don’t forget we’re hosting giveaways everyday this week.

Brigitte April 5, 2011 at 9:54 pm

Put up my 2 composter this spring to composte yard and kitchen waste.

Teresa O'Connor April 6, 2011 at 11:13 am

Good for you, Brigitte! Thanks for entering this random drawing.

Diane April 5, 2011 at 10:02 pm

With this new recycling program in our town, I’ve split our waste in more than half! Less garbage, more recycle. Thanks for the giveaway and thanks for the presentation at the Library tonight.

Teresa O'Connor April 6, 2011 at 11:14 am

Terrific, Diana. The more we can recycle, the less waste we have to deal with… Really glad you liked my talk, and thanks for visiting Seasonal Wisdom. Good luck!

Terry Chronister April 5, 2011 at 11:44 pm

We are using a solar powered swamp cooler with thermostat to keep our greenhouse at optimal temp spring through summer. Love walking into the greenhouse knowing it’s running on zero emmision free energy!

Teresa O'Connor April 6, 2011 at 11:15 am

Terry, that’s great … a solar-powered greenhouse with zero emissions. Impressive! Thanks for entering.

Michelle Cooper April 6, 2011 at 12:08 am

I just started worm composting with a worm farm I made from a plastic storage container I found for 50 cents at a garage sale. I got a handful of worms from my friends worm farm and they are very happy eating my kitchen scraps. I rinse out all of my egg shells and easily crush them in my stone pestle and mortar and throw the eggshell dust in the worm bin. It’s supposed to be good for them to reproduce. I’m not sure why. Just started composting yard scraps too with large store bought composter and now have a place for my very large pile of dry leaves instead of the dumpster.

Teresa O'Connor April 6, 2011 at 11:18 am

Michele: Your garden is going to love all that composted “black gold.” I bet you have less pests and pathogens this year. Thanks for entering.

Tina Kozma April 6, 2011 at 7:53 am

Green well we have composted for years , even before they called it green ,the garden grows so much better with compost, have always tried to conserve energy and water , by turning the furnace down and cleaning it and tuning it each year , am planning on rain barrels this year , so always living to be green .

Teresa O'Connor April 6, 2011 at 11:18 am

Good for you, Tina. Lots of terrific ideas here. Thanks for entering this random drawing.

Bonnie Neilson Atkins April 7, 2011 at 10:45 pm

Hi Teresa, my 11 yr old son and I have been running a recycling for cash thing for our cash strapped public school class, since he was in 4th Grade. This year the 5th and 6th grades all participated in recycling as another way to raise money to go to the bi-yearly Science Camp. In our own garden, we’ve released a few batches of lady bugs to eat the abundant crop of aphids we always seem to attract on my scented roses. We love watching butterflies and moths who are attracted to our ginormous butterfly bush in the backyard, its amazing how many hummingbirds are constant visitors too. My husband has replaced all our lights with the lower emission lights, I think they are LEDs, but I’m not totally sure. We water before the sun rises, I think twice a week, but more when the temperatures move up towards the triple digits. I can’t wait to visit more often, I like what I’ve seen so far :)

Teresa O'Connor April 8, 2011 at 6:33 am

Bonnie: Your recycling program for school sounds fantastic, and you seem to be doing lots of good things for the earth. Sorry this contest has closed already, but we did welcome your comments. And I do hope you’ll visit again. Best, Teresa

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