University of Florida

Sustainable Living

Our economy, culture, and quality of life are closely tied to the environment. Sustainable practices enable us to meet our current needs without compromising the next generation's ability to satisfy their own needs. We can preserve our natural heritage and conserve natural resources for the future by living sustainably.

To find out what Extension services are available in your area or to get personal assistance, please contact your county Extension office.

Eat Local: Star Fruit

Star fruit, also known as carambola, is a tropical fruit grown in south Florida.1 When sliced, the fruit resembles a five-pointed star, hence its name. Look for it at your local grocery store or farmers market. Star Fruit Facts Florida produces 90% of all star fruit grown in the United States.2 Star fruit is indigenous to Asia and has been grown in Florida for more than 100 years.2 Star fruit comes in both sweet and tart  More»

Reusable Water Bottles

You’ve probably seen more people carrying around reusable water bottles during the last few years. These bottles are made of glass, metal, or sturdy plastic, making them more durable—and thus reusable—than your typical disposable water bottle. However, reusable water bottles aren’t just a fashion trend; they're a conscious move toward more sustainable living. Reusable water bottles are sustainable because they  More»

How Solar Panels Work

After hearing a story a few weeks ago about a North Carolina town that rejected plans to build a solar farm over scientifically unfounded fears (one person thought solar panels would hog all the energy from the sun and not leave any for the plants), I got to thinking more about solar technology  More»

Eggplant Is in Season!

Eggplant is in season in Florida ten months out of the year, though the majority is produced during the fall and winter.1 It is an important Florida agricultural commodity and can be prepared in a variety of ways, including as a meat substitute.2 Look for firm, smooth-skinned2 eggplants now at your local grocery store or farmers market. Fun Eggplant Facts Florida ranks second nationally in eggplant production. In 2007, Florida produced 50  More»

What Are Biofuels?

When you fill up at the gas station, you may have noticed labels stating the percentage of ethanol in your gasoline. Ethanol is a kind of biofuel made from sugar, corn, or other plant sources that have gone through a fermentation process.1 Other kinds of biofuels include oils and gasses derived from plant and animal matter.2 Unlike gasoline, which is derived from oil that has been locked up underground for millions of years, biofuels are  More»

Strawberries Are in Season!

Strawberries are in season in Florida from December to April. Strawberries are an important Florida agricultural commodity and are delicious consumed fresh or in smoothies and desserts. Look for them now at your local grocery store or farmers market. Fun Strawberry Facts Florida ranks second in strawberry production in the nation (USDA NASS 2014). During the winter months, Florida is number one in strawberry production (Mossler  More»

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