Greener and Cleaner – Part Deux

Since my last post, I’ve come to a disturbing realization.  The clothes that I dry on my drying rack stink!  Yes, that’s right.  No “fresh breeze” or “sunny meadow” scent, they just smell. 

Needless to say, this really bums me out.  Here I am trying to save energy and help the earth and what do I get for my efforts? Stinky clothes.  But, since I’m a member of the information generation I decided to do a little research online to see what other people were saying.  Most people commented that the clothes they dry on the line have a great “outdoor” smell.  Of course, not all parts of the great outdoors smell great.  Maybe their clothes smell like mine.

I did find one or two people that had complaints similar to mine.  After looking into possible causes I finally decided (unscientifically) that the smell is caused by the busy street that we back up to.   You see our not-so-big backyard backs up to a not-so-small, not-so-quiet street.  Bottom line-the air quality in our backyard stinks!  (Pun intended.)  Given that environmental issues are important to me (in case you haven’t noticed) and that I’m concerned with a healthy environment for my family, this was a discouraging realization. 

So, short of moving, how can I solve this problem?  Well, it looks like I have a couple of options: 

  1. I can buy an air filter for my backyard.  This idea is not only expensive, it’s impractical.  There’s no way that a filter could handle the amount of air that it would be exposed to in my yard.  Not only that, an air filter would have to be plugged in and that would be contrary to my goal of saving electricity. 
  2. I could increase the amount of plants and trees in my yard.  A couple of years ago, we renovated our patio and added new stone beds and retaining walls.  Phase two of the renovation was going to be adding in the landscape plants a little at a time as our budget allowed.  Well, so far (aside from our pizza garden) our beds are bare.  Plants and trees have amazing air filtering abilities and they also help to lower the temperature by providing shade and insulation from the heat.

I’ve always known that plants are good for the environment but now I see what our air quality is like without them.   I’m convinced that more plants will improve the smell of our laundry so, once the temperatures cool off here in Texas, we’ll start planting shrubs and plants to help improve our stinky yard’s air quality, temperature, and appearance.  Until then, I’ll either have to find a new location for my drying rack or get used to stinky clothes.  

Air freshener anyone?


2 thoughts on “Greener and Cleaner – Part Deux

  1. mrsmackerelsnapperop September 11, 2012 — 7:33 pm

    What about lavender oil? I started using it in the diaper pails, but then I tried it in the "unmentionables" wash, and it made a big difference!(Great meeting you at CMN last month, btw! –Erin C.)

  2. I can give the lavender oil a try I suppose but the source of the odor seems to be in my backyard not in my clothes. They come out of the washer smelling wonderful and then get stinky after they dry outside. Now that I have the drying rack indoors (in my bathtub) everything is fresh again.Great hearing from you!

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