At Planet Forward we’ve been trying to compile lists that help you live a more sustainable lifestyle. These lists are all about how to reuse, recycle and upcycle simple household items so they have a second life or eliminate the need to buy something else. So far, we’ve found new uses for everything from mason jars and milk jugs to baking soda and socks. Today, we’re counting down ten sustainable reuses for citrus scraps.
Yes, left over limes, lemons and oranges can have a new purpose and you’ll never end up with food wasted. Our list today of 10 ways to reuse citrus scraps was inspired by earth911.com.
1. Clean fruits and vegetables: Use leftover lemon juice as a great way to green clean your produce. The recipe is “2 tablespoon of lemon juice, 4 tablespoons of vinegar and 2 cups of water, and” then place it in a spray bottle and use.
2. Enzyme cleaner: when baking soda or vinegar isn’t cutting it, there is no need to turn back to chemical cleaners. This recipe for enzyme cleaner takes two weeks to ferment before you use it, but that’s better than other recipes that require months of fermenting before you can use them.
3. Laundry: you can use the above enzyme cleaner on your wash to get rid of stubborn stains. As always, test a small less visible area first so you don’t accidentally ruin your favorite article of clothing.
4. Brass, copper and stainless steel pot cleaner: rub with half a citrus, if you’ve made lemonade use the empty rind, and rub the pot to get it clean. If your need some extra abrasion, sprinkle salt on the pot then scrub with the citrus half.
5. Scouring power: If you don’t want to use harsh chemicals, but want something powerful to use when scrubbing bathrooms, try this scouring scrub recipe from Crunchy Betty made using grapefruit peels and a few household ingredients.
6. Bug repellant: if you have a problem this summer keeping ants out of your house simply place orange peels in the affected area. The acid smell will repel the ants and they’ll no longer be a problem. Orange peel can also be used as personal bug repellant if you rub it against your skin.
7. Lighten your hair: if you want to go lighter this summer without going to the salon or using harsh hair dye kits, try this easy at home recipe. “Mix the juice of one lemon and a teaspoon of salt in a spray bottle, spritz through locks and head out into the sun for a few hours.”
8. Shoe polish: clean an old pair of shoes with either a little lemon juice on a soft rag or you can rub a half a lemon on the shoe. Again, test on a spot that is not very visible first. This would probably work best with leather or pleather shoes, not recommended for fabric or suede shoes.
9. Fight allergies: save the rind from a grapefruit and follow this recipe to make a great tea that will help stop your sniffling. “Simply, mince the peel of one large grapefruit and boil it with about 8 cups of water. Remove boiling mixture from heat, and allow to steep for 15 minutes. Strain to remove grapefruit rinds, and add lemon and honey for flavor if desired. Store any leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to three days.”
10. Keep olives fresh: adding a drop of lemon juice to a container of olives in your fridge will keep them fresher longer.
As you can see there are so many ways you can reuse old citrus scraps. Not only are you reusing citrus, but you are helping eliminate toxic chemicals from your household and embracing a greener lifestyle. Now that you’ve read this list, you’ll be sure to think twice before throwing citrus peels into the compost bin with this list of 10 sustainable solutions.
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