metropol » green

Tag: green

Going Green

In our fast-paced, modern environment, it’s not surprising that we’re increasingly seeking to create an oasis at home where we can escape the stress of the world and technology. Green may be exactly what you need to do just that.


Colour psychology experts will tell you the lush colour engages the senses and symbolises life, growth and renewal, thanks to its association with nature.

In the rules of feng shui too, green represents renewal, fresh energy and new beginnings.

Gender-neutral and universally-loved, green is a great option for those who aren’t afraid of a burst of bold colour.




Green Cuisine

It’s become expectation over aspiration for our foodie favourites to embody sustainability in all that they do. From the war on single-use plastics, to supply chain transparency and packaging compostability, this is more than a food trend – it’s a philosophy.



We’re seeing plenty of options across ingredients, preparation and packaging to take what’s on your plate to new, sustainable heights.

Hemp: This buzzword has grown wings and very much flown into foodie vernacular. Hemp is high in fibre, protein, minerals, and unsaturated fats, and contains the non-psychoactive cannabidiol, CBD. This nutrient dense plant is fast becoming used in everything from milk alternatives and cooking oils, to protein powders and energy bars.

Oat Milk: Plant-based milks are in hot demand, and no nut or grain has been spared from the quest to find a cow-less concoction. But one option does seem to be gaining more traction than most – the humble oat. A high-yield grain, oats are nutritious, cheap to produce and buy, and even grown locally in the South Island. Oat milk is creamy and can be easily homemade by soaking and blending oats with water.

Bio-packaging: Single-use plastics have been shown the door, and in their place we’re being shown a surprising panel of alternatives. Think seaweed, vegetable fats and oils, corn starch, straw, sawdust and even recycled food waste. Bioplastics made a splash when London Marathon runners were sated with golf ball-size pouches made from seaweed and filled with sports drink.


Thrive through winter

Your little garden projects don’t take a break just because it’s coming into winter… and neither should you. We’ve pulled together all of the tips and tricks to making sure your Garden of Eden stays alive and thriving.



  1. Don’t forget your roots: While we’re certain Six60 wasn’t being literal… in this case, we are. Winter is the perfect time to replenish your soil and make sure that it has all of the nutrients it needs to fight off that winter weather. Just as we need lots of vitamin C in winter, your garden needs good fertiliser.
  2. Catalogue your crops: You wouldn’t go out in the snow in your swimmers; the same goes for your choice of vegetables in your garden. Make sure you plant the appropriate crops to the season – broccoli, garlic, kale, onions, silverbeet and spinach are just a few.
  3. Too much at stake: Understandably you can’t be in your garden 24/7 to hold down the fort. Ensure your plants are protected from the cold winter winds by staking them – it’ll provide them with the extra support they need to make it through the chilly months.
  4. Ring-a-ring-a-roses: The colder months are the best time to plant your new roses. It’s also a perfect opportunity to prune any existing ones you have growing. This will help them with growth and help them avoid any pesky diseases.

If you want more help and advice, head into Terra Viva Home & Garden. They have all the tips, tricks and tools to meet your gardening needs, while also offering a full landscape design service that is very popular with customers.


Botanical beauty

Last year green came in pistachio and lime green hues. This year, it’s all about a cool and refreshing aqua shade – Biscay Green. Wear it with any shade of pink for the prettiest springtime look. But if you’re wanting to liven up the application process of the vibrant hue, we’ve got the tips for you.



BIT OF A BLUR: If you’re going for a ‘too cool to care’ approach, then this technique might be the one for you. Apply the shade with a damp brush along the lash line and then blend it out until the shadow is dry and diffused around your eyelid.

POP OF COLOUR: We’re not saying the green is the only shade you’re allowed to use. Sometimes less is more and with a colour like green, that’s usually the case. You want to channel the Wicked Witch of the West… not become her. A pop of green on your lower lashline could be all you need to tie together a look.

LITTLE BIT OF LINER: You don’t need an extravagant smokey eye to pack a punch at a function. It can be as simple as a singular line, in the colour (you guessed it) biscay green. Clean-cut and chic, the only requirement is to not have shaky hands.


Clean Cuisine

You’ve been told your whole life about the importance of clean eating right? Well what if you’ve been taking the concept of clean eating wrong this whole time? Dirty Dozen Clean Fifteen is a clever little ditty that tells us that some of our veges are clean and some of them are not so much. We break it down for you.


We all know the importance of eating fruits and vegetables, but we often disregard how the produce was grown.

Take pesticides, for example. There’s a huge body of evidence that links these nasty chemicals to a variety of health concerns.

The Dirty Dozen refers to 12 most ‘dirty’ crops, or those which farmers use the most pesticides on.

Alternatively, the Clean Fifteen refers to 15 crops that use the least amount of pesticides.

It’s not just a random guess, nor is it static data; the list is compiled from an analysis of the United States government’s Pesticide Data Program report, a pesticide residue monitoring system enacted back in 1991.

A new report is released every year and, although most of the information stays the same, sometimes crops come in at different numbers depending on varying pesticide residue levels.

Importantly, these handy little lists determine which fruits and veggies you should be buying organic, where possible, making your next grocery shop that little bit healthier.

The Dirty Dozen defines the top twelve crops that farmers use the most pesticides on, and therefore have the most pesticide residue when the reach the shelves of the supermarket – despite being washed beforehand. The EWG recommends buying organic:

1. Strawberries
2. Spinach
3. Kale
4. Nectarines
5. Apples
7. Peaches
8. Cherries
9. Pears
10. Tomatoes
11. Celery
12. Potatoes

While it’s also wise to buy the Clean 15 when it’s organically grown, these fruits and vegetables are recorded as having little to no pesticide residue in a conventional setting:

1. Avocados
2. Sweet corn
3. Pineapples
4. Frozen sweet peas
5. Onions
6. Papayas
7. Eggplants
8. Asparagus
9. Kiwifruit
10. Cabbages
11. Cauliflower
12. Cantaloupes
13. Broccoli
14. Mushrooms
15. Honeydew melons


Hemp revolution

The Brothers Green have seen the future and it is sustainable, easily accessible, incredibly nutritious, and inextricably bound up with hemp. So much so that The Brothers have opened a new processing facility in Hurunui District, making hemp cultivation a viable option for farmers keen to start growing plant-based protein.



The facility dries and cleans the seed, and turns it into the raw ingredients of hemp protein powder, hemp flour, dehulled hemp seeds and hemp oil. Head of Development Brad Lake says they are looking to include full traceability, so customers know where the hemp grew, was processed and the products it is going into.

Brad’s favourite from The Brothers Green range is the Hempy Bar – a snack bar you can buy at New World and PAK’nSAVE supermarkets nationwide.

“Containing 17 percent hemp, it is way ahead of any other hemp bar and it demonstrates the possibility of hemp,” Brad says.

The bars come in choc coconut and choc berry. Plant-based, nut-free, no refined sugar, vegan, and gluten-free, they fit well with low carb and keto eating at 30 percent protein, 40 percent fat, no sugar and low carb. Hemp is high in omega 3, fibre, magnesium, potassium, iron and zinc, appealing to flexitarians reducing animal proteins.

Containing all 20 amino acids, the packaging is all home-compostable.

Agriculturally this crop is spray-free, harvests in less than five months and requires little water, so tie some hemp into your life.


10 easy eco swaps

Sustainability and eco-consciousness may be the hottest buzzwords of 2020, but neither of these concepts require significant time and resource. In fact, simply by swapping ‘this’ for ‘that’, you can help your home tread more lightly on the earth.

  1. Beeswax buzz: Say no to single-use plastic wrap and instead opt for an alternative option – beeswax food wraps. They are the big thing in food preservatives right now (everyone’s buzzing about it… including the bees). The wraps are reusable, biodegradable and are oh so awesome in this war on plastic.
  2. The last straw: On the topic of fighting against plastic, we have our next suggested swap – a stainless steel drinking straw. While the internet has somewhat turned these items in a joke about purely ‘saving the turtles’, that’s not their sole reason for being produced. Stainless steel straws = a sustainable solution.
  3. Light the way: Rather than fumbling around for the light switch on your way to the bathroom during the night, use the light from your window. Yes… you’re correct, it is dark at night. But we’re referring to the light during the day that will charge your solar powered nightlight. Not to mention, it’s also helpful to the power bill too.
  4. Second lease on life: Judging from the lead into this, the next suggestion is self-explanatory: but why not buy items second-hand such as clothing, furniture, electronics or even books? Not only is it cost efficient, but it’s also sustainable. That makes it a win-win.
  5. Say yes to soap bars: Rid yourself of the plastic containers that most body washes come in. Instead opt for a solid soap bar. Worried about it not lasting long enough? Buy a soap holder to ensure that it dries in between uses.
  6. Hung up… on plastic: How annoying is it when you go to hang something on the washing line and your plastic peg snaps? This can all be avoided with the transition to metal pegs! They won’t rust and they last much longer.
  7. Carry on: A plastic bag is a rare find these days – especially at the supermarket. But that doesn’t mean you should be a balancing act trying to carry everything in your arms back to your car. Buy a few reusable shopping bags then store them near your car keys after use, so you remember to put them back!
  8. A one trick pony: Paper towels are a single-use product. Once they’re wet, it’s sayonara. The answer is simple – washable dishrags.
  9. Something to smile about: Dentists recommend that you should change your toothbrush every two to three months. If those said toothbrushes are plastic… that’s not good for Mother Earth. Bamboo alternatives are great because they’re biodegradable.
  10. Lose the lightbulbs: A simple light switch is needed for your home to become one step closer to being eco-conscious. LED bulbs are a much better options and once again easy on the power bill.


Growing a passion

It’s obvious he is a consummate plantsman down to the very tips of his fingers. Managing Director of Kiwiflora Nurseries, near Templeton, Nalin Gooneratne grew up in Sri Lanka on his grandparents’ tea, coffee and pepper plantation. That heritage and link to the earth and the environment led Nalin to his career in commercial horticulture in New Zealand.



“After gaining my Diploma in Horticulture from Lincoln I did an internship with the University of Minnesota – rather different conditions from New Zealand there,” he says.

“But next I spent a number of years working for a large Canterbury nursery developing my knowledge about the Canterbury climate, which can be quite challenging for tree selection.”

Those years of learning honed Nalin’s depth of knowledge and when the opportunity came to purchase Kiwiflora Nurseries, he was ready to move out on his own.

“This nursery has been something of a hidden gem, tucked away off State Highway 1. My vision is to grow it as a strong player in the industry with an emphasis on the quality of our service, advice and product. I want to impart to my customers my passion for planting trees and shrubs that will perform 365 days a year – not just plants that are the fashionable flavour of the month.”

Nalin says there are many forgotten plants, both native and exotic, that are suitable for growing in Canterbury and he is on a mission to reinvigorate interest in them.

Kiwiflora Nurseries are located at 851 Waterholes Rd, Templeton. Phone 03 349 4582.


Get your gardening on

What’s flourishing in the gardening world in 2020? From supersized houseplants to 80s flower inspiration, we give you the rundown on some of the coolest gardening developments expected to blossom over the coming year.

Super-sized species

2020 – the year of the houseplant? It’s no surprise that these indoor beauties are top of the list, but this year sees super-sized greenery take centre stage in many homes.

Forget the small decorative plants and modest, lonely aloe vera – it’s all about bigger, bolder species. Increase the health benefits of greenery by making a statement with showstopping varieties like the giant-leafed alocasia, the deep green monstera and the fiddle-leaf fig.

Don’t totally discount your miniature favourites, though – horticulturists predict 6-9cm plants will remain popular.


Your garden should always be a place of peace and purpose.

With environmental welfare at the forefront of many minds, what better way to take advantage of your outdoor space than sustainably sourcing your own fruit and veges?

Herbs, beans and peas are still high on the agenda this year, alongside highly nutritious microgreens, chillies, legumes and soybeans.

Sit back and reap the rich rewards of a fruitful vege garden; like fresh organic food and a reduced weekly grocery spend – not to mention the satisfaction that comes with it.

Add a creative touch to your food with edible flowers, flavour a cocktail with homegrown herbs or berries, or whip up a fresh vegetable salad, all with the fruits (literally!) of your labour.

Bug-friendly backyards

The new decade is all about being kind to wildlife thanks to growing concern over the catastrophic decline in insects and the overall impact of this on the environment.

In 2020, overgrown gardens teeming with wildlife take the top spot over neatly manicured lawns, as gardeners ditch pesticides and promote pollination.

Dubbed ‘rewilding’, the trend has sparked interest in outdoor spaces with a more natural aesthetic, which incorporate eco-friendly gardening concepts such as bee hotels, wildlife ponds, log piles, pollen-rich plants and compost heaps.

Plastic-free gardening is also a hot topic; consider using compostable plant pots made from rice husk and sustainable wood and bamboo fibres over wasteful black plastic ones.

80s flower power

The wild and beautiful blooms of the 80s are having a well-deserved revival with nemesias and diascias front of the line.

Not only do these pretty flowers offer a compact size, long flowering period and sweet scent that attracts bees and butterflies, they’re also incredibly flexible supporting plants that can be grown at the edge of any basket, bed or pot.

Expect to see a wider range of these beauties as new breeding programmes produce sensational colour schemes such as ‘berries and cream’.


End of an EQ era

It’s the end of an earthquake era; the site that was used to sort through the material from buildings that were damaged or demolished after the earthquakes is being transformed into a recreation area.


Burwood Resource Recovery Park


Final landscaping plans are being drawn up so that the Burwood Resource Recovery Park can be incorporated into neighbouring Bottle Lake Forest Park by early 2022.

The Burwood Resource Recovery Park was established after the earthquakes to sort through the vast volumes of construction and demolition waste from across Christchurch.

As much of the waste as possible has been recycled but that which could not be re-used remains on the site.

Material from sites where there was a loss of life in the 22 February 2011 earthquakes is also stored at the park but kept separately.

Christchurch City Council plans to engage with quake victims’ families later this year on how the sensitive material will be dealt with long-term.

In the meantime, the majority of the Burwood Resource Recovery Park is being readied for its transition to a recreation site and about 35,000 native plants have already been planted in the area.

“When the landscaping work is completed we will have an additional recreation area that will include walking tracks, mountain bike tracks and areas for bird watching,” Council Solid Waste Manager Ross Trotter says.

“It will offer some great scenic views of the Kaikoura Ranges and the Canterbury foothills, so it will be a good addition to the Bottle Lake Forest Park.”