Mrs Green’s confession

Filed in Blog by on October 6, 2009 4 Comments
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No, it's not my compost heap, it's my vegetable box

No, it's not my compost heap, it's my vegetable box

Ok, I wasn’t entirely honest with you yesterday and it’s been on my mind ever since.

You know I set myself a ‘no food waste’ challenge because of the mountain of stuff I had to chuck away altruistically donate to a friend’s bokashi last week?

Well there was another reason I set myself the challenge.

I was so embarrassed about it, I couldn’t bring myself to write about it yesterday.When I started to look through the fruit bowl, vegetable box and fridge to write up my inventory I found something else.

For the past few days Mr Green has been standing in the kitchen annexe looking like a cat in pursuit of a mouse. His nose is in the air and he walks around stealthily sniffing around the place

‘Can’t anyone else smell this?’ he’s been asking.

I go in and sniff. Little Miss Green goes in and takes a deep lungful of air, but neither of us could smell anything apart from the usual ‘bad drain’ smell that seems to go with the territory of sharing your water pipes with 6 neighbours.

‘It’s a kind of sweet fermenting smell’ Mr Green laments.

I put it down to his age.

Well yesterday I tracked the smell.

My concern had been that despite colder temperatures we had fruit flies in the house. I’d been blaming Mr Green for not shining the sink after use and being a bit slap dash with emptying the compost caddy.

Turns out we had some fluffy broccoli and a yellow cauliflower taking refuge in a box.

mould growing on broccoli

mould growing on broccoli

I remembered promising myself to use this stuff up when we returned from holiday. As we all know old habits die hard and we came home on ‘farm shop day’, so I just went and bought more stuff. I promptly forgot about the festering detritus in the old box.


So off to the compost bin we went with a load of vegetables, including some horrible carrot tops, a wrinkled, mouldy courgette and goodness knows what else. Once I’d reached the ‘slime-on-finger’ scenario I didn’t look too closely at what else was in there.

Now there is even more reason to ensure I don’t waste any food this week as I have a big deficit to make up for …

So far so good though, I’ve used a banana and apple up for breakfast this morning!


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 (4)

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  1. John Costigane says:

    Hi Mrs Green,

    Highlighting the food waste issue from the family perspective, including the occasional oversight, should help others adopt the proper approach to food usage. Food can go off for any number of reasons including the occasional bad piece of fruit/veg rotting the rest. The best attitude is to learn from these situations.

  2. sandy says:

    well we all have bad days. and being totally waste free is very difficult, at least it went in to the compost bin and not to the landfill. once again very nice to have you back

  3. Mrs Green says:

    @John Costigane: Hi John, well I certainly learned; most of all because broccoli is my favourite vegetable and it costs so much to waste it!

    @sandy: Yes, I console myself with the fact that today’s wasted broccoli is next springs compost which will feed the soil so I can grow more food 😉

  4. St45ju says:

    Wow,I was just looking for help with unprecedented fly prob on my compost,n found u.I was in Boscastle in2004 on the car park so now I’m wondering if that’s connected to my gardening passion,but I’ve always been concerned about waste of any sort to my family’s amusement. Sharon ( as in rose of) stoke on Trent ( as in people with a qaunt old dialect who create beauty from clay n coal); thank you

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