“Edelweiss, Edelweiss, every morning you greet me…” –sound of music

Why not be greeted every morning by the Edelweiss coffee sleeve to protect your mitts from the scalding magma Starbucks pumps into their cups.  The Scientific name Leontopodium alpinum comes from the Greek word for Lion because of it’s resemblance to a lion’s paw.  The thin fibers which coat the Edelweiss leaves and petals act as wonderful thermal insulators, protecting the plant from the harsh alpine environment in which it grows.  Just as it insulates the plant from harsh temperatures, the fibers could be mimicked in a thermal insulating sleeve.

Let’s start a new fad.  No more grabbing for the stale cardboard coffee sleeve, start using reusable, and mimic the Edelweiss along the way.

Check out my mum’s site to learn more about sustainable living.


The elegant way the maple seed falls can easily be mimicked to create a unique wood structure.  This structure could capture wind power on a windy day.

Graceful falling

(from “Leading-Edge Vortices Elevate Lift of Autorotating Plant Seeds.” By D. Lentink, W. B. Dickson, J. L. vanLeeuwen, M. H. Dickinson. Science, Vol. 324 Issue 5933, June 12, 2009.)

The way to best spread seeds is to sometimes give them wings.  The maple seed has been mimicked by several flight enthusiasts (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DeGdVUdOe40).

I was diving in the frigid waters of the puget sound this past weekend, and I was lucky enough to see a burrowing sea cucumber feeding.

Share strategies at http://www.asknature.org.


Brent Constantz has found a way to capture the exhaust of power plants and mix it with sea water to form cement.