Thursday, April 30, 2009

Giddy Recycles!

Never one to waste anything, my latest recycling idea is quite brilliant, if I do say so myself.

As you know by reading this blog, H and I have two beautiful rescue kitties. Spike and Sluggo truly do light up our days and we love them dearly. Not a day goes by that they don't bring a smile to our faces or a hearty belly laugh with their antics. Not to mention that the cats always have the best seat in the house!

Now, the downside of having pets is the, how shall we say it, ahem, the "exhaust" created by them.

We purchase the clumping kitty litter in big 40 pound, plastic tubs, which unfortunately, cannot be recycled by our local recycling company. I have used these tubs for everything from yarn storage to compost buckets, but alas, they still pile up in the garage. What to do? What to do?

Last year, I began buying all my eggs in recycled cardboard cartons. As I used the eggs, I kept the shells in the cartons and then stored them all in the garage with the intent of using them in my flower pots instead of styrofoam peanuts in order to save on the expensive potting soil. Not only will the cardboard help keep the soil moist, but the eggshells add calcium and other nutrients to the soil. At the end of the season, the egg cartons and depleted soil could be conveniently thrown on the compost pile for next year's garden. Perfect!!

A couple of days ago, I found some really nice tomato plants at our local nursery and decided to purchase them even though it's too early to plant them outside, but I knew if I waited, I would not have the selection of these lovely, healthy plants.

In years past, I've not had the best of luck with growing tomatoes like I did when we lived in the warmer climate of Kentucky, so I decided that perhaps growing them in individual buckets would be best up here in Maine. Voila! The need for buckets presented itself and what a better way to recycle the kitty litter pails!!!

The tomatoes spend every warm spring day outside in the sunshine, but I'm able to put them back in the garage in case of an unexpected spring freeze. Once the danger of frost is over, I'll keep them in a warm, sunny spot outside.

And just what is this nasty looking tub of vegetative stuff?

Why, it's seaweed collected while on one of our favorite walks in Sorrento Harbor. This stuff has been sitting above the high tide mark on the shore all winter long and is perfectly dried and ready to be spread on the garden. It's full of lovely nutrients like potassium, magnesium, zinc, selenium and loads of other things good for the flowers and veggies. We'll be collecting more each time we go.

I've finally managed to find the time and left over building materials to create a small planting area on the sunny side of the house. The area was mostly sandy fill, so I added lots of composted cow manure and seaweed and then planted red and white onions and red and green cabbage. It will be interesting to see how things grow. Our friend, little gnome "Dopey", keeps watch over the patch.
We're finally seeing some color in the garden as the primroses are beginning to bloom.

The Rock Arabis is blooming in the middle of the vegetable bed. I'll have to definitely move it this year!
Pansies always bring a spring smile to my face....

However, the Italian Parsley seedlings look as though they need more sun.

All in all though, I'm so happy to finally be able to get dirt under my fingernails again!

A dirty life is a good life!

Hugs, Giddy


Kerri said...

Good thinking, Giddy! You've come up with some great recycling ideas. I must agree that they are, indeed, brilliant :)
Those tubs make great planters for the tomatoes, and you've got a nice, early start!
Last summer I used empty soda cans in the bottom of my containers. They're easier than the styrofoam to separate from the soil at the end of the season. The egg cartons and shells are an excellent idea.
I envy you that nutritious seaweed!
Isn't it wonderful to see color in the garden again? Yes, dirt under the fingernails is not a bad thing! :)
It's nice to see your sweet smiling face!
Happy spring to you and your H!

Kerri said...

I was going to say you and your hubby, and then changed it to 'H'. So please disregard the 'your' :)

Giddy said...

Kerri, I think you and Ross need to drive a pickup truck over here and fill it with seaweed!

Oh, and "H" is my blog name for my hubby, John. Our kids call him Gunther, and his Dad used to call him Pedro, so go figure! He's got more names than he can remember!"-)

Zoey said...

You are the queen of recycling! That is a brilliant idea. I bet you will have bushels of tomatoes this year.

It sounds like you have been working hard outside. I've still only puttered a bit. We are still waiting for warm weather. I am planning to have a productive weekend if the weather cooperates.

Giddy said...

Zoey, I have to take advantage of every single day to do something for the garden whether it's sowing seeds in pots in the garage or digging in the garden soil. Our summer is so very short. I'm really anxious to see if the potted tomatoes will do better than the ones I've planted in the garden.

GardenJoy4Me said...

Giddy you have to be the most conscientious recyclers I know girl ! .. all of these ideas are great and so useful too !
We use a corncob litter that is very clumping and flushable too believe it or not.
I feel safer for our girls using it because it is 100% natural .. expensive yes but for peace of mind it is worth it to us : )
You go girl ! Fantastic : )