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Don't Just Recycle, Reuse!

Allen in Fall Lettuce GardenIt’s astounding how much trash we produce each year. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American produces about 4.6 pounds of garbage a day. That adds up to about 1600 pounds per year!

Much of what we toss out can find a second life in the garden. For instance, large, plastic milk jugs are perfect for protecting tender plants from light frosts. They are also great for watering or feeding tomato or pepper plants. Just punch holes in the bottom, bury the container next to the plant and fill with water or liquid fertilizer.

Shallow, disposable aluminum pans make great seed trays. Poke a few holes in the bottom of the pan for drainage, fill with sterile potting soil and sow the seeds. Once the seedlings get a little age on them, they can be transplanted to pots made from orange juice or yogurt containers.

And what about all about all those paper products that stack up over the course of the year? Newspapers can make the perfect weed barrier in the garden. Lay them flat on the ground, several layers thick. This will make a dense mat that weeds will have a hard time penetrating. Eventually, the paper will compost into the soil.

These are just a few ideas for reusing some of those things we'd ordinarily throw away because every little bit helps the environment.