Blog Review: environmentastic!

Caleb Hartley requested a Free Blog Review of his blog, environmentastic!.

So here’s the review…

What is environmentastic!?

Blog Review: environmentastic!

According to the about page Caleb has been an environmentalist for a number of years and this blog is his “one-stop-shop for environmental information, products, action, and good news.”

Site Design/Theme

The theme used on environmentastic! is a three column, 2 right side bars, that’s a predominately brown color. I found the small, light brown, text difficult to read on the very dark brown background. I would strongly recommend using a larger font size and maybe creating a better contrast.

The sidebars are a bit messy. The 125×125 ads and other widgets running together with the headers. The overall effect is jumbled and is not creating a coherent flow of information. I would recommend cutting back significantly on the non-advertising widgets. I strongly advise flushing the useless and spammy BlogRush widget and well as the uncontrollable and also useless Spott widget. I also suggest removing the useless and potentially dangerous Meta widget from the theme as well. And, lastly, I’d recommend not showing the RSS feed count until the number is over 100 subscribers.

I found navigation good although it suffered some from the jumbled sidebars. I’d recommend adding a sitemap or archive listing plugin to improve it further.

Monetization consists of 125×125 style affiliate and private ads that, for the most part, match the theme of the blog. 


Here are some articles that I thought were interesting on environmentastic!:

In I Blog to Assuage My Guilt Caleb addresses one of my criticisms of the ‘green’ movement in an honest, self-searching, fashion while offering a few common sense household green tips (although I think that using compact fluorescent light bulbs that contain mercury vs. standard incandescent bulbs is a bad idea).

Have a gnat problem? Here’s how to fix it - naturally! is a good article on a natural way to deal with a pest problem.

Simple Ways Series - Episode 1: Silverware vs. Plasticware suggests using silverware instead of plastic at your office. Uh, well, there is no free lunch. Water to wash the silverware isn’t free, you know.

In short, I found a good number of the articles to be a little lightweight or leaning too much toward blogging about blogging, such as articles about Entrecard or blogging contests, rather than environmentalism. I’d recommend spending a lot more blog time on improving the ‘green’ content.


environmentastic! has a number of problems that should be corrected. First of all, the theme does not encourage readership due to the small font size and contrast. Next, I’d recommend cleaning up the sidebar widgets along with transferring to a new theme. Lastly, I’d recommend improving the content by focusing on longer, more in depth, articles on green issues and avoiding blogging topics almost entirely. 

Get Your Site Reviewed

If you would like your blog reviewed by me for free, just like Caleb Hartley did, use my Free Blog Review page to request one. The waiting time for one right now is about 4-6 weeks but it should be worth the wait.


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Comment by Y. S.
2008-03-08 20:16:11

Yup, the font size is too small.

Comment by jfc
2008-03-08 20:28:45

Hi Y.S.,

That’s the danger sometimes when one doesn’t know how to modify CSS, some WordPress themes can be tough to safely modify. A theme can look great but there can be one small flaw, such bad H1-6 usage or a font size problem, that can make it tough on readers, on SEO or other factors.

Pingback by When Boredom Sets In
2008-03-09 15:19:18

[…] it can become a passion in itself. He writes great reviews, much more in-depth than mine. His "Blog Review: environmentastic!" is just one example. I have to be careful, however, because if I do too many reviews in a […]

2008-05-06 09:01:32

I definitely agree that the less blogging about blogging makes for a much more enjoyable read, and further — why not have more long-form, in-depth and well researched articles on going green and the environment? Small steps are easy and make for great blog posts, and certainly have their value. But scratch beneath the surface and do the work, too!

Comment by jfc
2008-05-06 10:02:06

Thanks for stopping by ‘Green’,

I took a quick glance at your blog and I thought it was quite good. It was readable and focused on your topic.

2008-08-08 01:13:17

I see the blog owner has taken some of the suggestions. This blog is soon to be one year old. I hope it gets lots of readers and that the blog owner reaches all his/her goals for the blog.

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