Recycling is one of the most widely known and practiced sustainability procedure in Australia, with many recycling centres for all kinds of goods in nearly every larger town and recycling bins in most places.  Recycling doesn’t have to be a hassle; it is simply a matter of knowing which kind of waste goes where and taking it there on your shopping day or whenever you are in that area so it’s included in your lifestyle. In fact, many things can be recycled successfully without even going into bins. Here’s how.

  • Kitchen scraps don’t have to be tossed into the bin, especially if you have a garden. You can utilise peelings and some other food scraps to make your own organic – and free –fertiliser. This can be spread on or dug into the garden whenever you have enough or when you are gardening. Non-meat products can be buried straight into the garden without waiting for them to turn into compost. This is nature’s way of doing it.
  • Lawn clippings are a much wasted, valuable addition to the garden. They help prevent weeds from growing while keeping the soil moist and cool. Then they break down gradually and provide nutrients for the plants, so why throw them away?

  • Fallen leaves are also a wonderful addition to the garden. Large ones can be mulched or chopped up with the lawnmower first so they break down more quickly and don’t blow away. Otherwise just rake them up and tip them onto the garden. Tip: make sure there are no tree seeds amongst them or you might end up with a garden full of seedlings.  Of course, you could pot these up and sell them at the next fete.
  • Donate your unwanted goods, toys and clothing to an op-shop, charity or school fete, or set up a swap meet day for local parents to attend with all their own stuff.
  • Recycle your grey water by getting a fitting that will take it into a special small tank or spray it directly onto the lawn or garden.

  • Wash your car on the lawn to save water being wasted. The phosphates in the car wash detergent are similar to those in lawn fertiliser. You’ll be watering and fertilising the lawn at the same time.
  • If you have a tree that sheds sticks into your backyard, bundle them up and use them for fuel or give them to other people who have wood-burning heaters. Or keep them for  backyard campfire to toast marshmallows over.
  • When purchasing goods, choose those with the least packaging.
  • Re-use plastic food containers instead of throwing them away. It will save them going into landfill and save a great deal in purchasing dedicated food containers.
  • Use cheap, reusable cotton bags for groceries instead of plastic ones. Or at least take those plastic ones back to the store for recycling.