Saturday, 16 July 2011

waste not...

Just a few tips on how things can be re-used:

1. Yoghurt pots - for seedlings, particularly beans - the best ones are such as the Ski or large Muller Rice or Longley Farm (the latter probably the best yoghurts on the planet i.m.o.! and I am not paid to say that!)

USe as slug traps as well, fill with cheap beer - don't tell the assistant as I did that their cheap own brand supermarket beer was going to be used to entice slugs! they get a bit upset!

Don't use for putting paint brush cleaner in - although it si quite interesting to watch the bottom of the yoghurt collapse over the few days as the substances react!

2. Plastic bags - re use as bin bags, compost bags in the kitchen, wash out clear freezer/food type ones and use again and again, use these also to cover propagating plants

3. packaging - bubble wrap for reuse in parcels, again as covering propagation, the big bubble ones - beside being excellent to jump on and scare people out of their wits - can be used as insulation around outdoor plants. Boxes for storage, for doll's or Sylvanian houses, for potato storage - we put cardboard dividers between each potato to stop any contagion if one goes off - you can't check in a sack...

4. Plastic bottles - cut ends off and use as cloches or slug traps or protection around brassicas etc. John Seymour ( http://cashandcarrots.blogspot.com/2011/07/john-seymour-and-self-sufficiency.html) has these linked together with hose to produce a basic hot water system for an outdoor shower.

5. Paper - re-use as scrap paper if not printed both sides, put newspapers under pets in hutches and then compost these and the hay, droppings etc, use shredding for packaging.

6. Water - now again John Seymour and indeed in many other similar books have ideas around "grey water" i.e from baths, sinks, washing etc, these require systems in place and filters to run back into certain parts of the house water system. We use the water from washing vegetables on yard plants and pots. Diluted wee can be used for plants that require a more acid feed - I have taken the potty up to the allotment, diluted the contents with rainwater and used it for the blueberry bush, or it can be added straight into the compost heap as an activator.
One of the old chaps that used to have an allotment near ours said about someone that "they emptied (the) piss-pot over t'turnips and they were champion"

7. Material, old clothes etc - first of all - mend socks, sew buttons on, use jeans/trousers with holes in the knees as shorts etc. But if they've had it, then material can be used for coverings, dolls clothes (our daughters loved the Barbie dolls dressed in clothes like theirs!), patchwork blankets, pomfets etc. Take un-needed ones to clothing banks or charity shops, or sell any decent ones if you need the money at a car boot or on ebay.

8. Goes without saying really - vegetable peelings, fruit peelings and cores onto the compost heap or feed to chickens or pigs if you have them. Some local authorities have collection bins for all food waste and there are small anaerobic digester units you can get for the yard.

9. Waste wood - dolls house furniture and toys - my wife has made Barbie wardrobes, a bath and sink, chairs etc out of scraps of wood. They will last probably longer than I will! And they are unique, not mass produced in the Far East etc. Fuel if you have the means to burn for heating/cooking etc. Borders of raised beds.

10. Tyres - plant pots, compost heaps, weighing down clamps of potatoes

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