Even though Earth Day is only celebrated once a year doesn’t mean your green-up efforts should be a once-a-year effort. And one easy way to stay green year-round is to find ways to reuse things you would normally toss into the waste basket and forget about.
Here’s how to give new life to old grocery bags (if you’re still opting for plastic rather than bringing your own reusable totes to the store!):
- Shelter young plants. For weather protection for your flower and vegetable seedlings, push four sticks into the soil around each plant, so that the ends stick up a couple of inches above the foliage. Then pull a plastic grocery bag down over the sticks and anchor the bottom with stones.
- Discourage critters. Most wild animals will flee from the sound of human voices. So turn on a battery-powered radio to an all-talk station at low volume, slide the radio inside a plastic grocery bag, tie it closed, and set the bag among your at-risk plants. Chances are, critters will scurry in a hurry.
- Make scarecrows. Collect a bunch of plastic grocery bags—the more colorful, the better. Fill them with air, tie them shut, and fasten them securely to the top of stakes about 5 to 6 feet tall. Push the stakes into the ground throughout your garden in a random pattern. When the bags bob in the breeze, the birds won’t like it one bit!
Even after you’ve used a plastic grocery bag a few times, there could be a lot of life left in it. In fact, if you tuck that bag into a recycling bin at the supermarket, it will be processed into wood-polymer lumber that’s used for making hardworking structures like boardwalks, nature trails, decks, and outdoor furniture.
My Supermarket Super Gardens book is chock-full of ideas for recycling potential trash into terrific treasures ranging from bug traps to bird feeders. Check it out—FREE for 21 days!