To prevent pest infestation/attraction, I do not store any that have had dairy products, meats or anything that has leaked in them, that have even tiny holes, nor are badly wrinkled. By having them already sorted, I can more efficiently reuse/recycle them. The wrinkled ones I use immediately for my house bunny's bed/toilet box lining, and left-over bones from kitchen table scraps unfit for composting. Any leaks that are washable, I wash in hot soapy water, then rinse in a mild, weak, bleach water to prevent mold growth and souring, then I use it for collecting my kitchen scraps for the outside compost. This is the final step for a sack in our home. Once re-used and contaminated with kitchen waste scheduled for the garden, I finally toss it.
It really helps our family to have ready access to a sack that is the appropriate size, shape, condition, and even for returning items for refunds. I keep a few of the less wrinkled ones in the floor of my car's back seat for cleaning out garbage each time we go out, and having the sack full for when we find a public trashcan, helping keep the older car at least clean.
This Summer, I hope to double-sack a few of my rare Hybrid Allium bulbs and perhaps sell them to garden centers.
By Lynda from Richardson, TX
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For the critics of plastic bags; paper bags waste trees. Canvas bags are unsanitary and carry germs, especially on the bottom where it sits on the floor and then on the counter - top.
My grandparents didn't spend their life worrying about all of the things that our generation worries about and they lived a long full frugal life. I admire this lady who carefully cares for and re-uses her plastic bags, and I think we should not be critical of her.
BE careful because plastic bags leach dioxins and if you store food in them, they leach in to the food. If you re-use the bags you are risking health to some extent because they are meant to be short term use only. I used to always reuse my bags too until I learned about this. Avoiding plastic in the first place is best.
Did you know that it takes 1,000 years for a plastic bag to decompose in a landfill? So, congratulations for saving bags for other uses, instead of filling up landfills! You can also, cut them into long strips and crochet them into purses, or other bags, like tote bags. Sometimes I use a plastic bag from a store, as a large ziploc bag for large bowls of food. There isn't a zip but you can just tie them shut and they work great!
Plastic bags are terrible. I know. And I need to switch to reusable canvas... I have no excuse. (Well, I could make some up....)
However, at the moment I am still the evil consumer of such things, and they DO get reused. I line small trash cans with them, and diapers of the extremely odiferous sort get expedited to the dumpster in them, etc... And when they start to pile up, I RECYCLE the paper towel tube left over when the towels are gone, and stuff the bags in. One tube holds quite a few bags, and then they will fit neatly in a drawer or cabinet. If I get too many, I take them to someone who's having a garage sale, or a thrift store that will reuse them.
Oh, yeah, and you can wad up a bag and shove it in the sink drain in case your stopper has disappeared. Kids....!
Plastic bags are really bad for the environment and a lot of countries are considering banning them.
Have you considered, using a cloth bag instead, then you can also save on storage space at the same time.
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