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Simple Changes to Save Money and the Environment - Green Tip #13

Updated on December 30, 2014
Witch Hazel, Natural Fiber Sponge, Lemon
Witch Hazel, Natural Fiber Sponge, Lemon | Source


As always, I had a topic in mind for this week. However, I needed to verify one item I intended to bring up, as being green. So I ventured into cyberspace for confirmation, and Lordy Goshen!, I found a plethora of ideas and information!! I thought, oh no, here we go again with the best laid plans of mice and men! Rather than risk the phrase becoming my mantra (which I really don’t think I can avoid due to the hip hop nature of my curiosity!), I redesigned today’s topic as the prelude to a series I will beintroducing, “Home recipes/remedies for everyday living”.

5 uses for lemon not mentioned in this article

Do you make use of items found in your kitchen for other purposes?

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Pantry Items Have More Uses Than You May Know

  1. If you’re one of many who enjoys flavored coffee, rather than buy the more expensive coffees or (worse) flavored creamers, try dropping a cinnamon stick in the empty coffee pot before brewing. The heated water filtering through the pot will permeate thecinnamon, resulting in a subtle spicy flavor. Because cinnamon sticks are very hard, you can use the same stick for 2 or 3 pots. Or, try adding a few drops of your favorite extract to the water before pouring into the well.
  2. If you use sponges for cleaning, Scotch makes a sponge called “greener clean”. It’s made with natural fibers from the agave plant. A package of three costs $3.99. They sour far less often than typical sponges. When they do become sour, simply run them through the dishwasher. These sponges last much longer than the traditional product, thus saving money.
  3. A much less expensive and gentler-on-the-skin alternative to astringents and toners is witch hazel, extracted from– you guessed it– the witch hazel plant. It not only cleanses and seals your pores, but does not burn or dry your skin. If you have oily skin, many astringents actually cause your skin to produce more oil in order to combat the drying effect they render. Indians have used witch hazel for medicinal and other purposes as far back as history reaches. More on this in future posts.
  4. To help keep your garden fountains clear of algae, place a few algae eating snails in the fountain. They can be purchased from any aquarium store. Be sure and consult the staff as to how many snails you need, depending on the size of yourfountain. In the event the fountain needs to be drained and cleaned, make sure you place the snails in water until finished, then return them to the basin once re-filled. This tip comes from my mother. It’s awesome having a Master Gardener in the family! Thanks, Mom!!
  5. When cleaning your barbecue grill, cut a lemon in half and pierce through the skin with a long-handled fork. While the grill is still hot, rub the lemon, exposed side down, back and forth across the grate. Not only will you save the surface from chemicals, but the lemon seasons the grill!
  6. Air fresheners, whether spray or plug-in, contain VOCs, or Volatile Organic Compounds. A green alternative is to revert to your hippie days– burn incense! After all, the 60s were all about being organic! Seriously, incense is composed of aromatic biotic materials, often combined with essential oils. Incense is a much more green alternative and won’t pollute your body. The scent also lasts longer than any spray.
  7. If incense isn’t your “thing”, place a decorative bowl filled with white vinegar and a slice of lemon in a corner of a room where it will be susceptible to heat or humidity. Bathrooms and kitchens, where offensive odors occur most often, are ideal.
  8. To help clean and deodorize your garbage disposal, throw a few slices of lemon or lime (these can be remnants of a tropical drink!) down the disposal and run until you no longer hear the “chewing” sound. Do not put the mounded ends of the rinds in the disposal, as they cannot be broken down and can damage the blades. Lemon or lime slices can also be placed in your interior trash cans to absorb odor.

Well, folks, that’s about it for this week!

Enjoy yourselves!



Shauna L Bowling

Refining, Defining or Rhyming

All Rights Reserved

© 2012 Shauna L Bowling


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    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thanks, Maria. I don't know why the comments are so low. Perhaps people weren't as environmentally conscious in 2011 as they are now. Thanx for sharing these simple tips that anyone can implement. You're a doll!

    • marcoujor profile image

      Maria Jordan 3 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      How can this post only have two comments...and how could I just now be seeing this evergreen hub TWO years after written??

      Thanks to Jo Goldsmith for honoring this piece in her May Gold Awards in the Social Issues category.

      Will share on FB and Twitter too...Voted UP and UABI. Hugs, Maria

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Marcy, I've actually written 21 "green tips", however they were posted on my work's website, so HubPages keeps finding duplicate violations when I try to post them here. Work has taken down the green tips part of our website because I stopped posting when I became involved with HubPages; I needed to devote my time to MY dream, so I stopped posting. I'm still finding the "violation", tho when I post to HubPages. I'll keep trying! I've got a 4 ring binder full of my "green" research. Stay tuned, I'm not defeated yet!

    • Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

      Marcy Goodfleisch 5 years ago from Planet Earth

      I like the witch hazel tip here! I've seen books recommending it, but there's not much information on it, which is a shame; it's so useful and natural!

      I look forward to reading more of your hubs - it's great to read another Hubber who's into the environment!