Sunday, December 11, 2011

An experiment in reducing local food waste...

So I've been thinking a little more about the frugan living stuff we've been hearing more and more about, and it dawned on Jessica and I to ask our local produce stand if we could have at their scrap bins. They gave us the go ahead and even provided us with a box to use. Here's what we came up with:

  • 12 bunches of Green Onions
  • The equivalent of 8 or 9 heads of lettuce of varying varieties; mostly Green leaf, Red leaf and Bib lettuce.
  • 8 bunches of Parsley
  • 4 Baby Bok Choy
  • 2 Ears of Corn
  • 1 Broccoli Stalk
  • 1/2 a Zucchini
  • 2 Bananas
  • 5 Radishes
  • 1/2 a cup of spinach
  • 2 Brussels Sprouts
  • 4 Fingerling Potatoes
  • 1 Green Bean
  • About 5 or so lbs. of humus for our compost from what was left that we couldn't salvage. Mostly corn husks, corn silk, and various stems and leaves. (which could have been eaten, but we were already up to our ears in veggies at this point.)

The picture here actually shows what was left after we feasted on our "spoils". We were able to make a huge salad of which we only added less than $1.00 of our own ingredients to feed the four of us.

From what's left, we've got some dehydrating planned for the parsley, while the green onions, radishes, potatoes and bok choy will go great for this week's kim chi! I've got another jar left of pureed pumpkin so I'll probably be using those bananas for some more pumpkin bread.

It's very exciting to see that there can be a way to reduce the amount of waste being generated everyday in little ways like this. The benefits of these actions could be greatly magnified if humanity as a whole could work together to provide others with a way to access this "lost" form of nutrition. It seems strange that there are so many people that are starving, yet so much good food is thrown away.

I have decided to conduct more such experiments in reducing local food waste in the future. It seems to me that there is much potential in the idea of frugan living and it certainly has shown me a benefit. Not only in the obvious aspect of obtaining free vegetables, but also in the sense that there's a better way to do things that humans are beginning to realize is essential for our ultimate survival.

Monday, October 3, 2011

October Unprocessed

The whole family is giving October Unprocessed a go!
We are pumped to reduce the amount of chemicals we are digesting on a daily basis.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

We've Bought a House!

This summer we bought a cute house in the greater Seattle area that is perfect for our mini homestead dream.

We started working on the yard before we had the house entirely unpacked. Needless to say, we were pumped to start building our beds and freeing ourselves of a giant lawn! Together my husband and I drew up a garden plan that included plenty of growing space, and outdoor kitchen, chicken coop, fire pit, gathering circle and possibly a tilapia pond. Once the plan was drafted I began laying out an outline of the new flower beds on the lawn.

Future flower beds marked out with kindling. Can you tell where we ripped up the rotting deck?

We removed the sod from the marked paths and piled it onto the future flower beds before adding lawn clippings and the like. On top of that we added a thick layer of cardboard and then 4-8" of veggie garden mix soil from our local composting center. To prevent the raised beds from avalanching onto our paths we edged the beds with bricks.

The layers of our sheet mulch: sod, lawn clippings and leaves, cardboard, topsoil/compost/sand mix and eventually a final mulch layer (not yet applied in this picture).

A "cross slice" of the edge of the bed. This section still needed its sand trench installed.

Almost done!