I am very excited to announce that I have partnered with Mossy Earth – a rewilding and reforestation project – to plan eight trees each month as part of my efforts to compensate for the carbon footprint created by my business.
Mossy Earth is a project powered by individuals and businesses becoming members. Mossy Earth then plant a certain number of trees each month on your behalf. They have UK projects as well as reforestation and rewilding projects worldwide. One project in the Highlands of Scotland is the restoration of the Caledonian pine forests. Historically, much of the Scottish Highlands were covered in a forest of majestic Scots pine and colourful broadleaf trees. It was home to a diversity of plants and animals. Gradually, much of that diversity has been lost. Mossy Earth have partnered with organisations to help undo some of the damage. They aim to increase the forest cover of the native pinewood habitat by planting predominantly Scots pine and downy birch in open areas. They are also working to increase the diversity of the growing woodland through the planting of food-producing broadleaf species. Many of the broadleaf species that should be present in these pinewoods, like hazel and hawthorn, are rare. Planting these species adds diversity to the woodland and can provide important ecosystem services. They also provide an important source of food for local wildlife like squirrels and birds. The project hopes to support rare species like twinflower, capercaillie and wildcats by increasing habitat and connectivity.
As you know, my work is inspired by nature and is a celebration of the world I see around me. I’ve felt the tension recently between the wildness that I want to celebrate and promote and the impact on the natural world of creating, selling and dispatching a product. I’ve been making gradual changes in my materials and processes to improve matters:
- replacing even biodegradable cellophanes with ‘naked’ options
- using stamps instead of stickers on packaging
- re-using packaging that comes into the studio
- only using UK printers
- using FSC approved or recycled materials
In the last year there has been a big shift in my business from selling trade (wholesaling product into retailers) to e-commerce (selling on this website and via Etsy). This has been fantastic but I have also been aware of the dramatic increase in mileage required to distribute the product. I used to send out a box of several hundred cards to a shop whereas now it can be three or four cards at a time which means lots more little journeys for postal vans. Part of my effort to counteract this is becoming a member of Mossy Earth.
If you think you might be interested in becoming a Mossy Earth member yourself you can find out more information here. It is £10 per month for an individual member, or they can put a tailored package together for you if you are a business. If you use this referral code: HANAMXR07 then Mossy Earth will plant four extra trees on your behalf AND four extra trees on my behalf.
I’m excited to find more ways to reduce my impact and campaign for better management of our natural resources – and for better access to green space for everyone – as the year goes on.
PS the leaf image at the top of this post is a work-in-progress from a larger drawing that I’m doing of one of the Drygrange Chestnuts. You can follow the progress of the drawing in the ‘Chestnut Tree’ highlight on my instagram page.