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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Blueberries,Dahlia's and plastics in the freezer.

This morning my friend Alison and I went to pick Blueberries.Alison had found a local farm that dose not spray their berries and had a decent price per pound.We both picked right around 10 pounds each to fill our freezers with this filled 6 quart sized freezer bags here.Alison had her basket with her to pick into so I snapped it instead of my homely plastic bucket.

Along the fence line of the field were some beautiful Dahlia's in their prime.I took some photos so I could try and find out which variety they are.I'd like to add them to my garden next spring.If anyone has an idea of their names please let me know.

I really don't like using plastics and have been trying to get rid of the plastic in our house.I feel a bit guilty using the plastic freezer bags for my berries.I do re-use these bags but someday they will wear out and need to be gotten rid of.So what are the alternatives?

There are some glass containers but they have plastic lids.Also there are plastic freezer containers,nope no good either,they are still plastic, although be it re-usable.
I read up on how to freeze in canning jars.This might work out.You do have to be careful of how full you fill the jars.Freezing causes the food and its moisture to expand.One tip said if you are using the Ball brand of jars to fill the jar just to the top of the word Ball written on the jar,it will give you the space you need.I think the main draw back would be canning jars are space hogs.
One of the websites I was reading did say that some how the waste of the plastic bag is nullified by the amount of power a full freezer uses????What I did not get that one it was a bit over my head.Yes I get the idea that a full freezer is more energy efficient but how dose that make up for the waste of the plastic bag?Any clues?
Another tip I found was if the Cottage Cheese or Yogurt cartons are not recycleable in your area people do use those for freezing too.We can recycle those here but the darn things bug me.More plastic.
I also asked my Mom what was used before freezer bags.I think my Mom is a bit tickled I keep asking her these types of questions. She said she used the plastic freezer containers but "before her time" she remembers there being waxed paper cartons much like an ice cream container.I Googled for those and had no luck finding them.
I am going to keep looking this is the second time my Mom has brought up the waxed paper cartons for wet foods somewhere there has to be someone who has some.If not maybe that will be my fortune. Ok I am a bit side tracked here for a moment.Is waxed paper a better alternative? When we built our gardens beds,we laid down cardboard over the grass to choke it out.We knew not to use the waxed boxes because they would not break down or was that not break down as quickly.Note to self go re-read up on that. I guess I have a new quest.
I suppose a person could really drive themselves nuts trying to be perfectly green or sustainable.I just sometimes feel like what we are already doing here is so easy and habit now that I must be over looking something.The media makes this life style look like a huge effort and its not.
I would really like to know what others think about my plastics in the freezer dilemma.Any suggestions? Are there products available in other countries that are better? What is in your freezer?


  1. I'm using canning jars for more & more these days. They hold my drinks for lunch at work, hold watermelon for same, and I imagine they'll take over for plastics eventually. For the berries I'd freeze them on a tray, loose, then fill the canning jars. This will also make them easier to take out what you need vs. the entire jars (I've done this with green peppers before).

    The jars don't leak and do recycle, completely if needed. Very nice :) The lids that are used for storage get a line on them in black permanent marker so I know not to can with them later. So far, so good!

    Right now - lots of plastic still in the freezer, and in the kitchen. I'm trying to slowly replace it all, and the canning jars are showing the most promise as general replacements.

  2. Come to think of it, my grandmothers' freezers were always quite empty - they seemed to hold some ice cube trays, ice cream, and a few smallish, frozen vegetable boxes from the grocery. One grandmother's basement, however, held fascinating rows of jarred pickles and fruits.

    If you've got too many blueberries, you can make Blueberry Cinnamon Soda. Angie at bythelakes.blogspot.com posted a link yesterday to the recipe at Culinate. I also did a short writeup about it at my blog. The soda was delicious and easy to make.

  3. If you go back just a generation or two (before plastic bags,) freezers were called "ice-boxes" and more canning was done, rather than freezing. Leftovers were the next day's lunch (if they occurred at all.) Baggies (etc,) storing things in bags (in my case, to be forgotten in the back) mainly developed during the 60s with TV dinners.
    My grandma loved plastic bags and would rinse & re-use. In terms of safety (plastic vs glass bottles in showers, etc.) I think a balance can be maintained.
    (but I'm much better at telling than doing, considering I don't even cook much! LOL) But I LOVE reading your adventures!

  4. Thanks Tia Hillary,as always you are an awesome teacher,if Sol could have just stayed with you until graduation life would have been grand.