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I love my dump

Discussion in 'Trash To Treasure - Joys Of Recycling' started by Lazy Gardener, Jan 27, 2019.

  1. Jan 27, 2019
    Lazy Gardener

    Lazy Gardener Super Self-Sufficient

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    I admit it. I am a trash picker. I will make sudden stops in front of random houses during trash day when I see something usable.

    I pick up pallets from various businesses.

    I once scored a powder coated wheel chair hand rim. A normal person would wonder why on earth would I bring that home. I don't even own a wheel chair! But, it's indestructible. I envision using it as the upper portion of a really cool garden trellis!

    Buckets from the local grocer (bakery dept). I occasionally score old produce from the grocer including bushels of corn husks. I bring spent coffee grounds home from church on a regular basis. In the summer, I bring home watermelon rinds from church.

    I frequently beg "stickers" from Home Depot and Lowes. These are pieces of lumber, usually less than 4' long which are used to separate bundles of wood. Perfect for miscellaneous building projects. I made a really cool set of steps for my chicken coop out of a pile of stickers.

    At least one time/season, I bring home a whole truck load of appliance boxes. These are mostly used for weed suppression in either new or established garden, covering noxious weeds (poison ivy!). And, they also make good brooders for folks who don't have coop space to brood chicks.

    Every fall, I go leaf scavenging. I drive through neighborhoods which offer town leaf pick up, and load my truck up with bagged leaves. Last season, I scored 2 loads: ~ 42 bags. I think my all time high was around 120 bags.

    By far, my favorite place to go shopping for that which is considered to be trash by more restrained citizens is the town dump. I have scored: Lots of windows and doors (the best were used in my coop build)

    [​IMG]

    Others have been used for cold frames, in my CP coop, and there are some being stored for future projects. I also come home with plenty of slightly used, or even brand new lumber. I've collected refrigerator/freezer shelving which is great for making chick brooder pens.

    I've brought home corning ware dishes and casseroles in perfect condition, lots of canning jars, some never used, glasses, pyrex ware, some beautiful cut glass pieces.

    Today, Hubby and I came back with a Maple double bed frame. Excellent shape, but has a split in the foot board. Hubby says easily fixed with glue and clamps. I intend to use it to make a garden bench. I also came back with a toaster and a LARGE crock pot.

    Our toaster got tossed a week ago b/c the thermostat was broken. This toaster I picked up today looks like it has seen very little use. Of course, it may not work well.

    Last night, when I was making a batch of spaghetti sauce, and a batch of chili, I was lamenting that I only had one large crock pot. 2 pots will make it so much easier when I'm doing marathon cooking sessions, or even processing stuff during harvest. The pot is the same size as my old one, and the crocks should be interchangable! I envision being able to make apple sauce, or stewed tomatoes in the crock pots, and ladle the produce from the pot to jars for immediate HWB processing.

    Oh, most of all, I love our town dump composting lot. Mountains of wood chips, an other mountain of leaves, several mountains of spent stable litter. I bring home multiple truck loads every spring/summer.

    So, what goodies have you scored from other people's trash?????


    ETA: The crock pot was a bust. The heat controls were not functional. However, the crock, and the glass lid are in fine condition. I'll keep them, and use them as inserts to my existing pot. Thus, can remove one crock full of food, and insert an other. Or can use one crock in the oven. I may go back to the dump to get the other one, and test it out before bringing it home. The toaster appears to be functioning well.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2019
    Marianne and baymule like this.
  2. Jan 27, 2019
    sumi

    sumi Sustainability Master Administrator

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    Wow, you've done incredibly well! I haven't had the opportunity to collect treasures from others' dumps, which here is mainly skips, but I did see some good things, so I'm planning to drag home loads of stuff in future.

    Here so far, the only items I scored from a dump, which was conveniently right next to my old house, was a glass cutting board, still in it's packaging, and a solid wood door, which I gave to my landlord, when he came over to collect my chicken pen. He was delighted with it :)
     
  3. Feb 2, 2019
    Lazy Gardener

    Lazy Gardener Super Self-Sufficient

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    Today, I came home with an IV pole in perfect condition, and a couple sets of peritoneal dialysis tubing. Yep. You'd call me crazy. I can see that pole doing duty as a wonderful garden trellis. And the dialysis tubing can be used for air line tubing with my hydroponic set ups. They had a big folding cot frame waiting to be tossed in the metal recycle bin. I may go back and get that: it would make a perfect frame for a chicken tractor, or perhaps to cover a garden bed to keep the cabbage moths out of the brassicas.
     
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  4. May 6, 2019
    Lazy Gardener

    Lazy Gardener Super Self-Sufficient

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    Did I tell you that I love my dump? Today, I didn't have much time to do some serious shopping. But... If any one wanted to build a new coop or shed, now would be the time to do it. Lots of doors and windows ripe for the picking.

    We dropped off some stuff at the burn pile, and I picked up a 2 x 6 that was just long enough to use to off-load my mulch barrels from the truck. Then, I spied some plants growing in the gravel berm that surrounds the burn pile: close inspection revealed artemesia. An other score. I've been wanting some to increase my variety of aromatics for coop and nest box.

    In the recycle building, I picked up some clear, shallow rubbermaid totes. These will be perfect to cover seedlings to get them off to a good start in garden or green house.

    Then, we went to the compost area. I brought back 4 barrels of compost. Not completely finished, still a bit chunky. I had to pull sticks and various flotsam out of the stuff. But that stuff was black, and just crawling with redworms. 2 weeks ago, it was frozen solid! I also got 3 barrels of wood chips that were finely chipped, had a lot of green matter in them, and were well on their way to breaking down.

    While I was standing on top of one pile, filling my trash cans, an other fellow was on an other pile, doing likewise. So, we had a nice conversation about the contents of the various piles there, and the various uses for the material. I planted a few ideas in his head about how to make gardening easier: BTE, Ruth Stout methods.

    So... In addition to picking up all these goodies at the dump, I've also had my exercise for the day. I'm thankful that hubby was able to help me off load the chips and compost. The stuff was saturated, and very heavy. I'm pleasantly tired. Muscles singing tonight, but I'll be ready to go again in the morning.
     
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  5. May 6, 2019
    Marianne

    Marianne Super Self-Sufficient

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    Lucky you! I come from a family of alley pickers as well.
    Our dump no longer lets people haul stuff off. But they do have a great hazardous and reclaimed 'stuff' area. They take all the brown paints, mix 'em together, all the whites, mix 'em together and you can have a couple 5 gallon buckets for nothing. I've never gotten any because I'm sure someone has let their paint freeze before they took it there. I guess a bunch of landlords get it since they have to repaint pretty regularly.

    There are chemicals that you can have, too. Cans of spray paint, WD40, you name it. If there's something left in the can, it's on the shelf for anyone at no charge.
     
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  6. May 6, 2019
    Marianne

    Marianne Super Self-Sufficient

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    Our recycle center is on the other side of town from the dump. We need compost but it's the monsoon season here. With more rain/hail tonight.:barnie
     
  7. May 6, 2019
    Lazy Gardener

    Lazy Gardener Super Self-Sufficient

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    We've had a few dry days here and there. Front, lower lawn is still saturated. But, the rest of the yard is drying out nicely.

    Our dump has the compostable area, and a building that is called "second time around" or some such thing. Obviously, folks can help themselves there, as well as dropping off stuff.

    However, all other dump picking is "not allowed". But... the folks who work there usually manage to look the other way when town residents go shopping there. I understand the liability issue. But... seriously??? Some really nice stuff gets tossed out. If I can keep it out of the land fills... If I can use it instead of buying new, I'm gonna continue doing so as long as I can get away with it. Back in the day, they used to even load mulch and compost into town resident's trucks for free. Crazy fools have caused that service to be cancelled b/c of liability issues.
     
  8. May 6, 2019
    Mini Horses

    Mini Horses Super Self-Sufficient

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    Yeah, our dump won't let you remove anything either! :( Sometimes people with leave good, reusable items in front of the dumpster, not in it...with a note and they will usually let you get out with that, if wanted -- like dog house, sand box, etc. We have a section for "metal" where old appliances, fence, grills, etc. are ut.

    A couple dump sites will let people take things from what isn't in the dumpster...paint, tires, bikes, etc. Some dare you!

    I am friends with the "mgr" at my close site and a couple of the day workers. They will turn their head if I want somethings but, truly we don't get a bunch of good stuff. With the policies at the dump, many will leave things by the road with a FREE sign on it.
     
  9. May 6, 2019
    Lazy Gardener

    Lazy Gardener Super Self-Sufficient

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    I saw folks loading a huge barrel style composter from one vehicle to an other yesterday. It looked like it was in very good condition, if not a little sun bleached. It was one of the high end models. They put it on top of a car. Bet it spun well on the way home!
     
  10. May 7, 2019
    Britesea

    Britesea Sustainability Master

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    kind of sad that someone spent that kind of money and then didn't use it
     

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