Friday, April 30, 2010

Biodegradable plastics and other things...

I came across this today in another blog i have been following:

I went to reply but after 2 paragraphs i realized i was carrying her entry too far off topic....  but it sparked a memory of a few things that i'd like to hang onto just a bit longer, lol.
She is doing her own test on the Sunchips biodegradable bag in her compost pile. According to Sunchips, the bag should be gone in about 14 months.

This is what i was going to reply with:

interesting. i saw their commercials but never looked into the claim. there was a plastic-like product made of corn starch that i remember being started when i was a kid. i had a writing pen that was made of it. It was green and yell and had a character of a smiling ear of corn on it.  you had to be careful to not chew this pen because it would begin to break down. i think it was the same stuff that Booda Velvet dog chew bones are made of...

Anyhow, i wonder if the bags could be used as one-year containers for planting in. I know some people have done whole (though small)gardens using store bought soil. They simply laid the bag along the ground, leaving the soil in the bag and planting seeds in a couple holes punctured in the bag. At the end of the season the bags are split open and the soil is left in place to be tilled under- since the soil bag effectively mulched over the garden plot they were placed upon. I once bought some doggy cleanup baggies at a pet store where i worked that claimed to be biodegradable.  After testing them with household kitchen waste, i decided that they weren't very biodegradable. I did some research online and discovered they were only made up of 10% biodegradable.  I'm not an Earth worshipper or even a believer in the global warming hoax, but i was wanting to be a little more responsible in Stewardship.  That company really made me mad because frankly it was more than a little misleading.   But through researching that, i did find a company that does make doggy cleanup baggies that are plastic-like and compostable and at a decent price.  But since i decided to keep a Vermicomposting bin in my kitchen, i didn't need any small, biodegradable, plasticlike baggies for my kitchen waste  any longer since i don't have to take that winter trip to the compost heap anymore.  But i do need to find those bags again because we are adopting the neighbor's Basset hound (a sad casualty of an unexpected divorce and subsequent relocation of the  family into  'no pets allowed' apartments) tonight or tomorrow, so i will need something to pick up the poo and i plan to install one of those pet poo digester compost pits.
 So, yeah...i was going way off topic for a one-sided discussion and didn't want to gum up her nice Blog with my ramblings. That is what my Blog is for. LOL

So....  windy again today... not as terrible as yesterday.  How on earth my greenhouses stayed upright is beyond me.  I have the bigger one tethered to the basketball hoop with coated airline cable and i have the smallet one tethered to that....  it must be the weight of the plant trays and the stability of being strapped together.

One bit of bad news tho...  my big laptop is now toast.   I caught the little one banging on it heartily with a toy and the screen went dead. I went to take a dirty diaper to the trash and that was all it took.  I think the banging dislodged some condensation and it permafried it.  I am just going to put it in a closet for a week or so and see if it ever comes back to life, but i am not expecting anything.
At least i have this mini laptop for now. Its an Acer Aspire, and it is very small but fully functional...  it does let me play with the garden program and some Facebook games- though they are quite small.  But at least i get online.

I almost got my Delicious account setup...  i was planning to do it a few minutes before the power went out and in the mild drama of that, it didn't get done.. then shortly after that, my laptop croaked.  So, my bookmarks are probably gone...again... *sigh*

Oh, another thing that shows how weird things have been for this house in the last couple days.   One of the fan blades snapped off one of our ceiling fans...  while it was on. It simply snapped off and hit the wall...  Hubby saw it fly off, i didn't see it myself but i watched him go pick it up. I had heard the bump noise it made and asked him what that was when he went to get it.  We were lucky that it missed my salt water tanks. It Probably missed the top tank by only about 6 inches.  I'm really glad it missed because we very well could have had 30 gallons of seawater on our floor last night.
So that fan will be removed soon. We think we will replace it with a basic fixture, 12 feet away is another fan and they really aren't needed anyway. In fact i don't like either one at all, but the intact fan is useful.

I have been trying to get my livingroom reordered.  Its small and the furniture is ugly, missmatched, awkward and big and there is too much of it,  but still too little space for more than a couple people to sit comfortably.
Since i have been playing with graph paper so much, i decided to measure out my livingroom and put it on a graph.  I measured all the furniture  and cut out paper pieces to represent them. I put the grid with my livingroom drawn on it into a plastic 3 ring binder sleeve and put scotch tape on the pieces representing the furniture.  So i can stick and unstick the furniture in different configurations and try to come up with a better layout.  I used the scanner to copy a couple of the possible layouts because i will forget from one try to the next.  So i will try and get hubby to look at it with me.  I am so frustrated with this room and the way the space is laid out. Every wall has something against it and it feels cramped and cluttered. Most of our furniture was given to us, and we are grateful for that, but in the 'Beggars can't be choosers'  reality, we weren't able to pick our own pieces with the idea of economizing space. Also, nothing really matches and it is embarrassing on a daily basis, no matter how much i clean the livingroom, it always looks and feels dingy.

Ok, so frustration has been let out and i have had my chance to just babble.

Gardenwise, the Jerusalem Artichokes are really coming along now. They are still very short, but they are appearing  all over.
I have some eggplant seeds sprouting now and more of the seedlings are really looking good.
I hope my dad is willing to do some compost delivering and some tilling this weekend.  There are things i could actually have planted by now if this wasn't my first year getting this plot ready.  If i were more capable i would try the mantis on the garden right now, but i won't make my hubby do it. So i will have to wait for my dad to come with his tractor.
I really hope their back yard, where the compost is, has dried up enough for access.  It needs to be spread out so it can all warm up.

The waiting is truly the hardest part!


Faith said...

I have fond memories of furniture made out of milk crates and power company wire spools. LOL Throw some used bed sheets over them and you are on your way to domesticity. Not too many young people expect to start out that way though. Used furniture is a wonderful gift to be appreciated. I finally got a bedroom set 3 years ago. First time I'd had furniture that matched. Pretty cool.

I expect those bags are only going to decompose in optimal conditions. I think you're right - who's going to check? Good sleuthing. :o)


icebear said...

I think my biggest beef it that the furniture is so large, but with minimal usable space. it all really has that college dorm feel without the smell of stale
With all the baby stuff and general clutter that i can never seem to find a home for, it is frustrating to be surrounded by. But i think i got a configuration i can enjoy for a while.

milk crates are great! i have been trying to get some for various uses, no luck :)

i bet the bags have to be composted... not tossed in a plastic garbage bag, compacted and then stuck in a landfill... so i don't know how far their good intentions will get them.