National zero waste week; day 5

Filed in Blog by on September 11, 2009 5 Comments
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Fennel seeds saved from our own garden!

Fennel seeds saved from our own garden!

How is everyone getting on?

I’ve loved hearing around the  blogosphere what everyone has been up to for National zero waste week.

I’ve been reading about people using their own shopping bags, doing baking to avoid plastic wrapping on cakes and biscuits, some are having a go at growing their own food and others are helping spread the word and encourage the masses to get involved.

We’ve had a few days of beautiful sunshine so I decided to do something I’ve never done before in honour of National zero waste week.

I decided to save my own seeds!

It’s something I’ve been thinking about for a long time but never got around to.

It makes complete sense from a zero waste point of view because I am yet to find seed packets which are not made from composite material.

Little Miss Green busied herself with finding me some small tins for our stash and we sat together in the sunshine stripping coriander plants and fennel.

I’ve also decided to see if I can grow some herbs indoors throughout the winter. On my dining table I have a very neglected looking basil plant along with some parsley and lemon verbena. I’ll be off out later today to see what else I can find hiding in amongst the weeds – I know we have mint, marjoram, thyme and sage – although the latter are evergreens anyway. If I can grow herbs successfully, then that’s yet more packaging saved from landfill over the next year or so!

Have you ever saved your own seeds? Today I’m on the hunt for runner bean and broad beans.

After that I’ve promised Little Miss Green I’ll bake some ginger biscuits for her and I need to get on with all the apples she harvested yesterday. She scaled the tree with her handy reSACKel bag slung over her shoulder and came back with a few kilos of cooking apples. Maybe apple and fennel cake would be good …

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About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth’s fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (5)

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  1. Hi Mrs G. Great going on the seed saving. We’re harvesting our sunflower seedsto help feed the birds this winter and to try and plant next year. Our Rocket went to seed (cos I’m crap like that) but I’m going to see what we can do with those to overcome my guilt as a plant murderer. It’s going well so far. Well considering my ZWW last March began with a plaster, no surprise really. At the beginning of Day 5 the bin is still empty but heaven help because very soon it will be the weekend and no doubt the bin saboteurs will all be at home to meddle 😀 x

  2. John Costigane says:

    Hi Mrs Green,

    My plastic bottle (milk-free) pledge is going well, though evaporated milk with coffee is now off the alternatives list. Juice is fine however with some sunny weather at last.

    Seed production is a definite Zero Waste Alternative though I have avoided it on the Sweet Basil to maximise leaf production. this year. Next year I plan to keep a good plant aside to flower for the seeds. The beauty is that seeds from a good plant will be better than bought seeds, which tend to be poorer quality. The 2 big plant left should last over the winter to avoid drying for as long as possible. I also plan to get a low power window propagator to speed germination. This should allow quicker growth, with more and bigger plants hopefully.

  3. Deb from Boston says:

    I’ve saved marigold and zinnia seeds over the years, but never veggie or herbs. Here in the US seed packs are paper envelopes – so I can recycle when empty. Good luck.

  4. Angela says:

    I want a “Little Miss Green!” What an assistant!

    We had zero food waste this week- yay!

  5. Mrs Green says:

    @Almost Mrs Average: Hi Mrs A – we don’t seem to have any sunflower seeds; I don’t know whether they haven’t developed yet or whether they’ve already been taken. I’ve never grown them for seed saving until this year.
    Well done on a great zero waste week and rocket goes to seed very quickly, so don’t be too hard on yourself 😉

    @John Costigane: Hi John, you’ve done really well. I can imagine coffee with evaporated milk is a little trying on the taste buds. I hope your basil survives the winter!

    @Deb from Boston: Hi Deb, great to hear that you have paper packets for flower seeds; maybe we will get those one day 😉

    @Angela: Hi Angela, LMG is very practically minded, just like her Dad – I’m blessed. Well done on a zero food waste week; that’s excellent!

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