Often survival projects end up taking more time than originally anticipated. My recent bucket-gathering initiative is no exception though the effort has been fun and completely worthwhile.
A friend of mine who builds sub-irrigated planters (SIPs – more information to come on these soon!) recommended that I go to Waffle House to ask for some leftover “icing” buckets. While enjoying an omelette I asked the waitress if they had any buckets – she looked at me as if I had three heads!
Fortunately the Winn-Dixie grocery store across the street had a number of food-grade icing buckets that their bakery was willing to part with. Later I found that Walmart and Sam’s Club recycle their buckets but local managers will consider giving out a few in exchange for a donation to a charity. Restaurants also have “pickle buckets” that can be procured if you have a friend in the industry.
Why did the project become time-consuming? Icing is sticky! Removing the gooey mess in the kitchen is NOT recommended (trust me.) The best way to clean these buckets is outdoors with a scrubby sponge and a garden hose. Once the bulk of the icing is removed, the buckets can be bleached in a large sink or tub.
Another funny story: one night I left several icing buckets on the front porch to be washed the next morning. At 2am I heard a crash and found the neighborhood possums enjoying an icing buffet. Probably the biggest sugar rush of that possum family’s life!
The effort is worthwhile, however, as the buckets have a number of practical applications:
-Sub-irrigated Planters (pictures available soon)
-Water Purification – Check out this awesome video of the Sawyer Point Two Bucket filter
-Food Storage – This video from our friends at Emergency Essentials is a primer for the use of mylar bags for food storage.
These are only a few uses of these practical survival tools. How do you use buckets such as these?
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