Waste not, want not

“If you use a commodity or recourse carefully and without extravagance you will never be in need”

We have started a new initiative in our household, where we are cultivating as much produce as we can, using the seeds from the food we consume.

I bought a couple of capsicums from the supermarket, and instead of putting the seeds and stem into the rubbish, I can either add them to my compost or chuck them in the garden, adding nutrients, feed them to our chooks or our guinea pigs, or I can dry them and plant them, creating new plants!

Another thing we are doing is utilising our plastic waste as seed propagating trays. Meat trays, yoghurt pots, margarine containers, biscuit packets and a cut down milk bottle make prefect trays. A lidded container I bought nectarines in can be turned into a mini greenhouse. I have pine seeds growing in one! Our kids bring home all their lunchbox waste and we try to find a home for it all. The seeds from their apples, watermelon, peaches, nectarines and apricots get dried on the windmill before being planted in the garden. I t could take years before they grow, but better to have good habits that could result in a plant growing, than just added them to our weekly rubbish collection.

I think schools should be encouraging this practice. Students could be propagating plants and selling them in recycled plastic pots for fundraising!

Washed up sea turtle!

The kids and I were pottering in the garden, when one of our lovely neighbours, popped over to let us know that there was a sea turtle on the beach! My future marine biologist children and I dropped our gardening tools and hurried down to the beach!

About 500m along, we could see the tracks in the sand, leading up to the sickly turtle.

The sea was rather rough that day and the turtle looked exhausted. We knew not to touch it, as turtle can carry diseases, but to protect it from dogs, walkers and quad bike riders we created a visual barrier around it using driftwood. My daughter found a bucket lid, which she used to try and get some water onto its drying our shell.

I phoned the Department of Conservation hot line 0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468) who advised us to keep watch over it and to continue to protect it from danger. The tide was on its way in, so we hoped it would return to the sea when the water came.

DOC rangers did arrive later that day and took the turtle to Massey University where specialist veterinarians assessed the turtle. They named her Waiinu. We were told that she had pneumonia and unfortunately died the following day.