Monday Harvest, June 2022

It’s time once again for Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. For the hub of all things harvest Monday related, please visit Happy Acres.

I have been harvesting all year, taking photos, but not actually telling anyone about it.

This time I have harvested over the weekend, and I’m on the computer, so let’s go!

I took a pot of spring onions to my parents place so that I would have fresh spring onions to harvest. Little did I know that the pot harboured a small tomato seedling that produced BIG tomatoes! Spring onions – not so many. I’m not sure on the variety of tomato, but I have carefully saved the seeds for planting later this year. Who says you can’t grow tomatoes in a temperate climate winter?

Tomatoes:

Winter Tomatoes

214g of large tomato. Possibly a red black russian or a red blue jasper. I can’t think of any other large tomato variety that I have grown recently that this could have ‘compost volunteered’ from.

I have a passionfruit vine, that was grown from seed by a friend. This seed has grown into a vigorous vine, and I have passionfruit!

Panama Passionfruit:

264g panama passionfruit harvested. I think I’ve had about 10-12 passionfruit so far this year. Not bad for a passionfruit grown on a south facing fence… although I suspect my neighbours on the north side of the fence are enjoying the fruits of my labours much more.

Yuzu:

My poor yuzu plant is not in good nick. Snails or *something* keeps nibbling at the valuable skin, and then when I harvest it (they fall off the tree), and forget to zest the skin, the nibbled bits of skin go black and mouldy. The fruit is filled with seeds – which I have saved and “plan” to sow to try and grow my own yuzu orchard.

Other harvests:

I have harvested a few cape goosberries, pineberries, alpine berries, only *just* beating the ants and snails to the “other half of the fruit”. The latter taste like bubblegum.

How about you dear reader? Have you been harvesting from your garden in your neck of the woods?

2021 review thingo part 1

Questions repeated from Shauna Reid 2017 Review Thingo, because the actual reverb thingy appears to have stalled on the interwebs.

This post is going to be published in two parts, mainly because it’s still a work in progress, but also because already past mid-February, and I really gotta get something out there! This is 2021.1. I also have a few photos that are supposed to be in this post, so if you are reading this early, I haven’t uploaded them; and if you are reading a bit later the magic has happened.

For earlier “years in review” see here. (Having added that link, I can already see how inconsistent I have been in my post tagging. I need to remediate that).

1. What did you do in 2021 that you’d never done before?

2021 – Made a pair of pants! I found in my horde the most stylish, very 1980s boxy pattern. During three saturday’s worth of in-person sewing classes through a local community college (before the covid-19 delta lockdown in June – October 2021), I learnt various basic sewing techniques. This is in contrast of my usual technique “push go”, or “hit it with a hammer”. Then, instead of doing the “standard” class project of a pair of boxer shorts, I used the pattern to make a pair of pants for my mum. They are quite unshapely and not flattering to anyone, and it is not helped by the fact that I cannot tell the front from the back. But I made them myself and they are unique.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for this year?

a. Reduce single use plastics by buying from bricks and mortar store, rather than online.

2021 – kind of. For those times when coffee could only be served in a landfill cup, I would save the cup and recycle it at a 7-11 using their SimplyCups program. I also save various medication packets, tooth cleaning implements, ready to recycle via Terracycle system at Flora and Fauna.

This was hideously offset by my twice weekly 100km round trip in the car to look after my mum.

b. meditate daily.
I didn’t meditate daily, but meditated 221 out of 365 days (60%) of the year.
Clearly I am a “tick and check type person”, because when I get a whole lot of days ticked, I don’t want to have one day without a tick*… and so I meditate. I’ve found that meditation upon waking up works for me.

* having recently read James Clear’s Atomic Habits, I now realise that this is part of the habit tracking process, particular the bit about making habit tracking automatic and “not breaking the chain”. One day missed is an omission. Two days missed is the beginning of another habit

c) A new one for 2021: Be kinder to myself. Daily grateful moments

I started 2021 with this, and then forgot about it. I have noticed that I am horribly bitter and twisted at work at the moment. I think I need a new job. Failing that – no negativity in 2022!!

Achievable habit (doable in two minutes or less): Every night before bed, write down a one sentence #gratitude moment.

Achievable habit: Do one bit of my current project after dinner

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

My friend Regina gave birth to baby Noah. His older sister Mia was a premature, but at 37 weeks, Noah is considered a full term.

Noah

4. Did anyone close to you pass away?

2021 – A work colleague whom I considered an ally passed away during November 2021. His passing was a shock to by myself and other colleagues

5. What countries did you visit?

Australia! One of the emergency edicts brought in as part Australia’s covid-19 response was that Australians weren’t allowed to leave the country in the period March 2020 – November 2021.

New towns/villages in NSW visited in 2021: Griffith in the NSW Riverina district.

6. What would you like to have next year that you lacked in this one?

Establish new habits successfully. I just started reading a new audiobook – Atomic Habits by James Clear*. I’ve made it as far as chapter 3, and it just seems to make so much sense.

* the book has now been completed, as you can see from the tone of this post!

7. What dates from this year will remain etched upon your memory?

Heading to Lady Elliot Island (Great Barrier Reef) for the third time for a yoga retreat. It was a trip that had been postponed from 2020 and provided a small reminder of what pre-covid life was like . I remember this happened just as the delta outbreak started in Sydney, and “BBQ man” visited a bunch of BBQ stores whilst infectious.

The day covid-19 delta variant lockdowns were lifted in Sydney in October 2021. Every park and greenspace was full of people picnicking HARD with their friends – restaurants and cafes were not yet opened to dine-in.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Mediating for 221 days out of 365! I didn’t realise that I was capable of this, and never had a good way of tracking it. Then I got an app on my phone that my friend had been raving about (for an eyewatering, but not quite eyewatering full price)

9. What was your biggest failure?

Cleaning up.
Any form of gardening that doesn’t involve weeding or surprises. (that is: planning).

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

I fell off my bike! I had in my head that I was going to ride a specific route in my area. I was less than 5km from home, riding uphill along a cycleway .. and I was keeping too far left (even though I didn’t need to), and my handlebars clipped the adjacent safety railing. The bike stopped, and I didn’t. I really wanted to finish my planned route, but decided that I really should be sensible and return home. Damage: Bruised ego, scraped knees (thank goodness I was wearing non aerodynamic jeans!), and a slight tendon tear on my wrist.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

Not a physical item, but I bought one year access to a meditation app on my phone. It allowed me to track (automatically) when I had meditated rather than keeping a manual diary, and then I could see progress, rather than think I hadn’t achieved anything.

12. Where did most of your money go?

Online shopping.

13. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

When I was on Lady Elliot Island for my yoga retreat, I was present for the release of some green turtle hatchlings. They had actually hatched a month *later* than “normal”, and had unfortunately started heading towards one of the island cabins who had left their outside lights on despite instructions not to (the turtles navigate by the light of the moon, and they can get lost with artificial light). For the hatchling release, the island guests formed in two rows along the beach, and then the bucket containing 50 hatchlings was tipped onto the sand. We all cheered and hollered and clapped as the tiny hatchlings started heading towards the real moon, and the breaking waves, and their life. That was just so special, and I am so grateful that I was there at the right moment. The next day the “local” turtle man John Meech “Meechy” flew out to the island and started digging in all of the registered turtle egg sites on the island to see if there were any other stragglers who hadn’t yet dug their way out of their nest. He found a further 10 hatchlings.

Monday Harvest, November 2021

I had a hand of bananas growing all throughout winter, and finally I decided it was time to harvest. The main “plant” had died back, and the bottom layer of bananas had started to turn.

Homegrown bananas:

Homegrown bananas

It took about 3 weeks for me to go through the lot. Each banana was about 1.5 fingers in size. They were almost plain in taste – weren’t super sweet until the skin had turned black in colour. I gave one hand to my neighbour, ate a few, and then dehydrated the rest. I didn’t actually *weight* or count how many I got, but considering it has been about 4 years since my last crop, I was very happy! I need to thin my banana plants more often.

I’ve picked a few cherry tomatoes, some jewel of opar leaves, but not much else harvested of note (let alone planted). I killed my raspberry canes (left them too long in pots that were too small), the snails/slaters ate all the garlic that I planted, and both the beetroot and silverbeet have gone to seed. Over winter I managed to get some yuzu seeds to germinate ( I believe they grow true to type), as well as

illawarra plum seedlings:

Illawarra plum seedlings

(I think you need a boy and a girl plant)

I left 2020 harvest shop purchased chestnuts in the fridge for so long …. they sprouted! So what would you do? Yes, I planted them.

Chestnut seedlings:

Chestnut seedlings

On my to-do list is to pull out the gone-to-seed silverbeet and beetroot, and plant rosella, calendula and carrot seeds.

What is on your garden to-do list this month dear reader? Have you managed a harvest too?

Monday Harvest, August 2021

It’s time once again for Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. 

I’ve been quiet because busy busy. Not much happening in the garden because most of my down time has been spent lying on the couch in a lot of “cannot be bothereds”, and my work day is book-ended by walks in the park. I really need the walks to separate my “work from home” life from my “life at home” life, and it helps keep me sane.

Sydney is currently under various stages of lockdown to try and contain the delta variant of covid-19, and my area is under one of the strictest orders. Now I must wear a mask when outside my house/property, and cannot go more than 5km from home. I tell you, I tried playing badminton today wearing a mask, and I was overheating!

But let’s talk about my winter harvest.

Firstly, guavas:

Guavas 2021

I haven’t actually weighed my harvests, but this year has been really productive. I’m getting (probably) 5-10kg worth of fruit on a weekly basis, and it’s been about 7 weeks so far. In non-covid years, I would have swapped these beauties for other goods. This year, because of restrictions of travel, I’ve been turning most of these into rather disappointing fruit leathers. Two years ago, I made the most perfect guava fruit leather recipe. This year, I cannot replicate it. So instead I’m getting gritty guava chips. I have tried up to 50% apple sauce/50% guava puree (de-seeded), and I cannot get the texture that I am looking for. Combos include with apple sauce, bush lemon juice (& zest), pureed pear, banana, and even the fruit from a monstera deliciosa (foraged). Nope. Fruit leather does not want to cooperate with me this year.

Secondly, Macadamia nuts:

Macadamias 2021

I haven’t actually got a macadamia tree*, but I have found a street tree in my travels. As they fruit in winter, I have been busily collecting and de-husking the nuts. I think I like foraged macadamia nuts much better than bunya nuts, because the return on investment is much better, almost 1:1 versus 1:30 chance in getting an edible nut!

* I have a macadamia nut seedling, which sprouted in the compost from a discarded 2020 nut. I shall try and grow it.

I didn’t take a photo, but I did a huge harvest of my silverbeet. Mainly to clear my planter box so that I could plant garlic before the winter solstice.

So dear reader, how are your winter harvests going?

Musing on bulk food goods stores

In response to the desire for less plastic, or during campaigns like “plastic free july“, we often turn to bulk food goods stores such as Alfalfa House, Blue Mountains Food Co-operative, Naked Foods, or The Source Bulk Foods (other brands are available).

This might ease our conscience as an individual consumer, but, plastic is still generated, just in a bigger format.

So are we really making a difference?

For example, I might have a one litre laundry liquid bottle. And I refill it from a 20L bulk square bottle like these ones at flora and fauna:store-refill-1

I do prefer to get laundry powder, but most of the stuff I can get still contains a lot  of salt, and contains optical brighteners which aren’t recommended for clothes. I did try using soap nuts in the wash; not sure if it cleaned my clothes. Next up is try making a soap nut liquid.

I know some bulk 25kg flours is sourced in a paper bag, but most other products – nuts, pasta etc do come in plastic.

With milk, I am re-using glass bottles for full cream milk via Harris Farm’s single herd milk scheme; but I am also travelling a 80km+ round trip to do so. (However, I am doing this journey  as part of other journeys).

I try to support those cafes that are accepting re-usable cups. If I do have to get a landfill coffee cup, I take advantage of 7-11’s scheme to recycle coffee cups and lids

Some random musings from a sleep deprived, over-extended, overly mentally loaded me.

Still here

Still here. Life has become busy.

Since November 2020 ish, my mum has gone from having low care needs to medium-to-high care needs. This means that if I’m not at home, or working from home, exercising (to keep myself sane): I’m at her place.
Covid-19 has a lot to answer for, in that all of the emergency lockdown provisions have meant that our elderly have become socially isolated (more so), and this has escalated their mental decline, particularly if they are suffering from a dementia related illness.
Garden is still chugging along with the cherry tomatoes going strong, silverbeet going nuts, and chokoes (chayote) had to be harvested with an extendable pole and me standing on a milkcrate. I haven’t yet planted garlic for winter growing, or my potatoes for last summer’s growing. I got very excited when I spotted a surprise hand of bananas growing in my mini banana grove. I suspect the
intense 1:100 rainfall that we had in March 2021
may have contributed to the surprise!

How are you going, dear reader? How does your garden grow?

2020 Review Thingo Part 2.

This post is the second of two parts. Part one can be found here: Review thingo 2020.1

14. What song will always remind you of this year?

Ballad of Bunnings Karen.
OK, so it’s not a song. It’s performance poetry in the style of Banjo Patterson.

For some bizarre reason, everytime a covid related lockdown was announced, Australian people would rush to the supermarket to stock up on toilet paper. You can’t eat it. Yet people would get TP as if their life depended on it. Also as if you couldn’t catch covid-19 by jamming the supermarket in the 2 hours before curfew or lockdown hit.

Anyway, Bunnings is a chain of hardware stores like Home Depot in the USA or B&Q in the UK. At one point, masks were mandatory inside shops, yet some people refused to wear them claiming that it was their right to not wear a mask. This song is about them.

15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder?

Happier! I’m not dead or sick! No one I know is dead or sick!
Sadder! How did we get to this? A bunch of people thinking this is all a hoax.

b) t̶h̶i̶n̶n̶e̶r̶ ̶o̶r̶ ̶f̶a̶t̶t̶e̶r̶?̶ Are you stronger?

Marginally larger. I ate a lot more working from home; and then turned to chocolate to keep me going through the day. I thought I changed this question. Perhaps the question should be: Are you stronger? I thought I changed this question. Right, I’m changing it now.

c) richer or poorer?

Probably poorer due the amount of online shopping. Yet richer, because I’m not buying a daily coffee while working in the office. I do miss that ritual.

16. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Looked after me before looking after others.

18. How did you spend Christmas?

We were supposed to spend Christmas at an old station/ranch house in the NSW outback (also like in 2019). Instead, the NPWS cancelled on us because of the rain (rain makes the dirt roads impassable for day/weeks as they get torn up if you drive on them when wet), so we spent Christmas in a motel room in Cobar. Thankfully average temperatures this year were in the low to mid 30s instead of the mid 40s! I think the only nod that we had towards it being Christmas (rather than any other day), was the teeny tiny round of Christmas Cake that I had bought from Flour and Stone. We explored a lot of Cobar and found two football fields that we didn’t know about before.

19. Did you fall in love this year?
No.

20. What was your favourite TV program?

Why do all the Australian on-demand tv stations online, on the internet require you to sign in? If I didn’t have to sign in, I probably would have watched more TV online. I don’t need to sign in when I watch your tv shows on my tv.
As it is, I can only remember watching crap home renovation tv shows, re-runs of the cook & the chef, and gogglebox.

21. What was the best book you read?

I haven’t done much reading, and as it is, I mainly read cookbooks.
I liked the bits that I saw of Maeve O’Mara’s Food Safari: Earth, Fire, Water, mainly because there was a complex interesting looking dish involving amazake (with koji) and dehydrated black olives. I was very excited to see Shannon Martinez’s A Cookbook (that happens to be Vegan) in the book remainder store. Yes, I bought it.

22. What was your favourite f̶i̶l̶m̶ theatre event?

I really only watch movies when I’m on a plane, going for an overseas holiday. No holidays in 2020, so no new movies.
So my alternate question – because I go to the theatre a lot more than I go to the cinema.
Favourite theatre event for 2020: Cursed! at Belvoir Street theatre. Three generations of family get together – are they cursed, or is life what they make of it?
I also did quite enjoy watching Hamilton online.

23. What did you do on your birthday

Fark. Worked from home. Lame, huh?

24. What kept you sane?

Cycling or yoga every morning before starting my work from home routine.

25. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

Francesa Mills. Saw her in The Globe’s streaming of Two noble kinsmen, and was like *thunk* this woman is AMAZING.

26. Who did you miss?

As much as some of the stupidness annoys me … I miss being in the office with my co-workers and the ritual of going to the cafe for the morning coffee.

Onwards!

2020 Review Thingo Part 1

Questions repeated from Shauna Reid 2017 Review Thingo, because the actual reverb thingy appears to have stalled on the interwebs.

This post is going to be published in two parts, mainly because it’s still a work in progress, but also because it’s the last day of January, and I really gotta get something out there! This is 2020.1.

Earlier “year in review” posts can be found:

2019 Review Thingo
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014 part one, part two
2013
2011
2010


1. What did you do in 2020 that you’d never done before?

Purchased an overlocker (serger) and a sewing machine. Both secondhand of course. I had been really getting into the regular sewing bees with the local boomerang bags group, so when the first Sydney COVID lockdown started in March, I bought these two machines second hand so i could keep making bags. The overlocker was heaps of fun – I overlocked all my bag & handle blanks, but never quite got around to sewing them together to make a complete bag. Adding to the list of partially complete projects.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for this year?

a. Reduce single use plastics by buying from bricks and mortar store, rather than online.

Yes, and no. All good until covid hit. I don’t think I bought anything excessively extra, but then it got to the point where I preferred to buy certain goods online (from independent stores), rather than go out. And then I would go and buy takeaway food, as a relief from the need to cook (because 8 hour workshops in person, turned into 8 hour workshops ONLINE. Very draining).
There was a brief period in which reusable coffee cups could be used in cafes (rather than single use landfill cups), but when Sydney had it’s “Northern Beaches” outbreak in December, that put those small gains to a screaming halt.
2020 reduce plastic usage: 0
March 2021 edit – cafes like Ragamuffin and Bourke Street Bakery have started accepting reusable cups again. Yay!
I’ll keep this resolution on the list for 2021.

b. Finish stuff, rather than have partially complete projects.
2020 finish stuff: 0
You know what I think it is? I’m like a magpie, easily distracted by something new and shiny.

c. meditate daily.
I didn’t meditate daily, but with the start of the coronavirus work from home lockdown in Sydney, I started off the day with a yoga, possibly the closest thing I have to daily meditation. I got to 90 days in a row before I fell off the wagon.
2020 meditate daily: 0.25

I have started (again) with an app that has a “new year’s meditation challenge”, to meditate at least 15 out of 21 days. There are short intros to various mediation concepts leading in, a bit less intensive than the meditate in may interviews. I made it to about 20 days consecutive, and then had one day off, and am now restarting.

A new one for 2021: Be kinder to myself. Daily grateful moments

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

My friend Reg gave birth to baby Mia, about 3 months premature. This was in May.

Baby Mia

4. Did anyone close to you pass away?

My bees. I realised part way through the year that although I have referred to my bees dying, I haven’t actually told you about it.

Early January 2020/late December 2019, it was so hot. Sydney was ringed by bushfires, smoke was in the air. My bees were under stress. Small Hive Beetle (SHB) can detect the bees under stress – so they moved in, which causes more distress, and so the spiral starts. I noticed some odd behaviour, even so much that I thought the bees were about to swarm. After chatting to some other beekeepers, I decided that I needed to get into the hive, but was hamstrung by the lack of other warre beekeepers available for about a week. In the end, I grabbed a beekeeper who was available and went in, but it was too late. The remaining bees (clustered on the outside), had disappeared, and i think the queen had died. Six hours worth of cutting out comb and then “cooking” SHB larvae in boiling water is not a task I would wish on anyone.

Now imagine that this was a beehive on a farm that is only visited once a month? All you would see is any empty hive filled with the vermin SHB, and probably wax moth. No bees.

5. What countries did you visit?

Australia! One of the emergency edicts brought in as part Australia’s covid-19 response was that Australians weren’t allowed to leave the country.

As various covid-19 clusters grew, this turned into state based or local government area based lockdowns, stopping various residents of certain areas entering/exiting one state or another. The police forces in Australia are generally state based (rather than city/county based like in the USA), so the majority of police were deployed to border towns and the roads between states.

I haven’t even left the state of NSW during 2020.

But then, with the various state and country based restrictions, NSW is currently at 14 days of no community transmission of Covid-19. That’s pretty good.

6. What would you like to have next year that you lacked in this one?

These are the words I picked in last two years reverb:

Creativity

Sustainability

Engagement
and I will keep them again for 2021. Does that mean I have been lacking these things the past two years? Hmm.

7. What dates from this year will remain etched upon your memory?

The “very last play” I saw at the Opera House in March 2020, before the covid-19 lockdowns stopped all theatre in the state.
The “very first play” we saw in real life, all masked up after lockdown – Virginia Wolf’s A Room of One’s Own. Not the best play to discover that you can no longer concentrate on a monologue

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Maintaining a good LIFE/work balance while working from home. My routine generally involved morning exercise before I started the working day – yoga, a walk to the station, or a long bike ride. Then, my partner kept me honest at the end of the working day, by making sure I ended my day on time by going for a walk.

Also pretty happy that we haven’t managed to kill each other yet, and that we kept a few online “theatre dates” with the theatre crew via videoconferencing.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Finishing projects. Cleaning up.
I enjoy the end products of gardening. but never quite get around to planting the seeds or seedlings.
This is despite working from home. So my routine is now to do at least 10 minutes in the morning – repot or plant something, before I do my morning exercise and start work.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

No, thank goodness.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

Hmm. The toy is still new, but I bought a pressure cooker, which I have wanted for a while. I had been eyeing off stove top pressure cookers, as well as electric. I ended up with an electric one.

This has actually been really useful during summer because I have been able to cook and not heat up the kitchen. Very happy.

12. Where did most of your money go?

Online shopping.
Our once-a-day coffee habit, no longer supplied by the cafes near the office, had to be supplied by me. I’ve worked out that we went through about 8kg coffee, April – December.
I’m still a bit wary about stepping into shops for too long a period. So if there isn’t a local stockist of something that I can run in and grab; yes, I have ordered it online and had it shipped.

13. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

Australia’s relative success in containing covid-19.
Jacinda Ardern’s re-election as prime minister in New Zealand.
The election of Biden/Harris in the USA.

Nine Weeks until Christmas 2020

The local farmers markets restarted in June 2020 after the first* NSW Covid-19 lockdown, and I have been visiting regularly, almost more regularly than pre-covid. There’s a little fence around all entry points, and you need to have your temperature taken and grab a squirt of hand sanitiser before heading into the outdoor venue.

It’s good to see all of the farmers and producers again.

Anyway, for my most recent visit, there was a sign up saying: “Nine Weeks till Christmas! Order your hams now!”

What the? Nine weeks till Christmas? What happened to 2020? How has it both managed to drag on interminably, and suddenly be near the end?

In other (garden) news, I thought I would get no guava crop this year. They normally crop around June-July. When I had nothing then, I thought my pruning mid-summer had snipped off all of the forming fruit. But it seems it was a combination of odd-weather and poor pollination. I got fruit in October. So very very late. The poorly pollinated fruits were smaller than golf balls, and instead of the rock hard “normal” seeds inside, I got little brown dots, a bit like rosehips. Because it is so warm, the guavas are almost rotten by the time they drop off the tree. What’s left I have been pureeing with apple sauce + tumeric + black pepper + cinnamon, and dehydrating. Sort of a guava chewy.

Over winter, I splurged a little and bought two fruit trees – prunus mume and a calville blanc d’hiver apple tree. Then I found out this new apple tree isn’t compatible with the current lot of apple trees that I already have, and not only that it is a triploid. Gonna be difficult to get apples unless I get another pollinator ….

Have also planted corn “seeds”, from last years crop. Germination rate is pretty good, nearly 100%. Hoping to have a break from the cherry tomatoes, but the seedlings sprouting from my compost have other ideas.

Have you discovered this too, dear reader, that your year has been both super fast and super slow? Have your fruit trees also cropped this year at an unexpected time? Let me know your thoughts.

Plastic Free July, 2020

Unlike previous years, I am not cataloging my usage (or attempt at non-usage) of plastic during this year’s Plastic Free July.

Cos:

1. It is depressing; and
2. Covid-19.

I am still heading to the bulk goods stores when I can, and refilling my dish detergent, milk bottles, laundry detergent, epsom salts etc. I’ve found some local shops that sell nuts & beans without packaging, I just take along & reuse a plastic bag when I head there. I am using my reusable N95 mask that I purchased during the 2019 Summer bushfire season. Who knew that it would come in so handy later in the year?

But look at this:

reusable cup

I got so excited when local (ish) bourke street bakery announced that after the Covid lockdown in March 2020 (& subsequent refusal to use any reusable cup); that from July they were accepting the “Green Caffeen” system of reusable cups. Woohoo!

I couldn’t find a copy of the updated advice from the Restaurant & Catering association, but here is something from the Northern Territory Government. Essentially, cafes can accept a reusable cup as long as (a) it’s a contactless pour; and (b) cup is clean/cleaned in a commercial dishwasher.

Not only that, Ragamuffin Cafe in Leichhardt is accepting *any* reusable cup, not just the green caffeen system.

So appropriate to the public health orders applicable to your area.

So get out there, be social but spatially distance so you can *support* these business that are supporting the reusable cup system (rather than those that don’t), and get caffeinated at the same time.

PS. I was sifting through my compost. Look what I found:

disposable cup

Yep, it’s the plastic liner of a single use disposable coffee cup. Each reusable cup you use, prevents the usage/creation of something like that.