Sunday, May 17, 2009

Trash Disposal

Trash! We all make it and if you live in a rural area or at your retreat you need to get rid of it. How do we do that?

I grew up in a town of less than 500 people (late 40’s early 50’s) and there was no trash pick-up service so we had to burn our everyday trash and occasionally take stuff to the dump ourselves. Except for newspapers, we burned everything, cans, bottles, milk cartons, food scraps and so on. Maybe every couple of months we would empty the drum and separate the unburned cans from the ashes. We would evenly spread the ashes in the back of the property and crush the cans. When we had enough cans we would take them to the county dump. Simple!

Items like newspapers we recycled (yes, we recycled back then) because organizations’ like the Boy Scouts would pick them up several times a year. They arranged for the trucks to put the papers in and the money they made paid for tents and other Boy Scout gear.

The daily trash we burned in the back yard in a 55 gallon steel drum. Around the base we would take a pick and punch holes in the bottom and about six inches apart around the base of the drum and make three rows of these about four inches between each row. This provided all the air needed for complete burning and let the rain water drain out.

For fire safety use a screening material similar to what is used on fireplace screens. Place the screen over the top of the barrel to keep burning embers contained so not to start a forest or grass fires. Let’s not burn down your retreat or homestead!

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