many people in our world today, recycling metal, glass, cardboard, cotton rags
and other items is a new process. Others complain when they have to pay a deposit
for a cold drink can or bottle. Farmers, ranchers and other country people are
amazed at this new interest in a process they have practiced forever. To many,
this one effort has contributed to their survival for more times than they care
to remember. Here are a few of my favorite stories about using items “one more
Back in the days before extensive flood control dams were built
along the McClellan Creek watershed, the old creek often went wild after big rains.
Excessive erosion occurred at every curve along the creek bed. I hired Johnny
Day of McLean and his winch
truck to haul in wrecked car bodies to place in a line to eliminate a wild curve
in the creek trying to save a nice grassy meadow from washing away.
pushed sand up into the line of wrecked cars, making a dike. Brush and trees grew
quickly in the moist creek sand, and today you have to hunt to find the wrecks.
They are completely hidden beneath the creek banks and brush. The once wild creek
is now contained and the meadow was saved all by a recycling effort.
favorite recycling story happened a few years ago when I was hired by a neighbor
rancher to install a new bathroom inside his older home. All went well until my
sewer line reached the new septic tank he had just installed.
encountered a 1950 four-door Ford sedan body complete with all windows intact,
lying in an open pit. To empty the drain line I merely rolled down a window, inserted
my sewer pipe and rolled the window up as far as possible. The pit was filled
with dirt, covering the car body, which was strong enough to hold up the weight.
The many holes and outlets in the floor and sides let the affluent out into the
sands. That has been more than 40 years ago and as far as I know, it is still
favorite common-sense recycling story took place on land I once farmed in Ochiltree
County. Several terraced neighboring fields emptied out into a grassed waterway
that drained well until excessive rains began eroding a channel. Both government
and private efforts tried for two years to remedy the erosion without much success.
A bracero (legal Spanish worker at that time) suggested we gather old
bed springs from the city dump and place them in the waterway. We gathered several,
floored the channel with the squares of bed springs, staked them down and it worked.
Grass and weeds grew up inside the springs and the channel was soon restored back
to original condition. This was an economical and successful solution to a problem
using simple recycling.
So, before you throw anything away, think whether
it could be used in some way one more time?
Trew - July
19, 2012 column
"It's All Trew"
Trew is a freelance writer and retired rancher. He can be reached at 806-779-3164,
by mail at Box A, Alanreed, TX 79002, or by email at trewblue@centramedia .net.
For books see delberttrew .com.
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