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  1. #1

    Default Is it OK to toss apple cores and banana peels outside?

    https://www.mnn.com/lifestyle/respon...&ICID=ref_fark

    I'm having trouble imbedding the link into text for some reason.

    Anyway, I learned something.

  2. #2
    illabelle's Avatar
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    I feed wild (and domestic) birds in my yard. In addition to suet feeders, my free range mixed flock of ducks, chickens, and guineas share their food with an assortment of wild turkeys, bluejays, cardinals, crows, pigeons, and whatever else, including squirrels. (At night, we've seen skunk, possum, and raccoon eating our cat/dog food, though not recently.) I buy 50-lb bags of cracked corn for the birds, and also give them food waste tossed from the porch. What the birds don't eat is eventually cooked by the sun and eaten by the mower. Until then, it's laying there. But I don't live in town, my neighbors are far away, and I don't care what they think about my yard. However, I never throw banana or orange peels. Nothing eats them, and they don't decay well. I don't toss paper or plastic either.

    On the trail, things are different. I still don't toss banana/orange peels or paper/plastic. And I don't haul extra food to feed the animals. But I don't see an issue with tossing an apple core off trail (the sticky label goes in my trash bag). How is an apple core that I toss different from an apple or apple core in an old orchard where the trail passes? How is an apple core different from a black walnut or an acorn or hickory nut that might still be there a year from now? I don't toss crackers or noodles into the bushes, but if I brought spinach leaves, and they were too wilty to eat, I'll toss them in a heartbeat - no different from a gazillion other leaves from weeds, bushes, and trees.

    I don't toss anything out of a car.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by illabelle View Post
    I feed wild (and domestic) birds in my yard. In addition to suet feeders, my free range mixed flock of ducks, chickens, and guineas share their food with an assortment of wild turkeys, bluejays, cardinals, crows, pigeons, and whatever else, including squirrels. (At night, we've seen skunk, possum, and raccoon eating our cat/dog food, though not recently.) I buy 50-lb bags of cracked corn for the birds, and also give them food waste tossed from the porch. What the birds don't eat is eventually cooked by the sun and eaten by the mower. Until then, it's laying there. But I don't live in town, my neighbors are far away, and I don't care what they think about my yard. However, I never throw banana or orange peels. Nothing eats them, and they don't decay well. I don't toss paper or plastic either.

    On the trail, things are different. I still don't toss banana/orange peels or paper/plastic. And I don't haul extra food to feed the animals. But I don't see an issue with tossing an apple core off trail (the sticky label goes in my trash bag). How is an apple core that I toss different from an apple or apple core in an old orchard where the trail passes? How is an apple core different from a black walnut or an acorn or hickory nut that might still be there a year from now? I don't toss crackers or noodles into the bushes, but if I brought spinach leaves, and they were too wilty to eat, I'll toss them in a heartbeat - no different from a gazillion other leaves from weeds, bushes, and trees.

    I don't toss anything out of a car.
    Yep, I think the difference is one's backyard, vs. a trail or roadside used by thousands. It's no big deal if a banana peel, or grapefruit rind takes two years to decompose in my inefficient backyard off the porch compost pile, that I only turn a few times per summer.

  4. #4
    Registered User ant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by illabelle View Post
    I feed wild (and domestic) birds in my yard. In addition to suet feeders, my free range mixed flock of ducks, chickens, and guineas share their food with an assortment of wild turkeys, bluejays, cardinals, crows, pigeons, and whatever else, including squirrels. (At night, we've seen skunk, possum, and raccoon eating our cat/dog food, though not recently.) I buy 50-lb bags of cracked corn for the birds, and also give them food waste tossed from the porch. What the birds don't eat is eventually cooked by the sun and eaten by the mower. Until then, it's laying there. But I don't live in town, my neighbors are far away, and I don't care what they think about my yard. However, I never throw banana or orange peels. Nothing eats them, and they don't decay well. I don't toss paper or plastic either.

    On the trail, things are different. I still don't toss banana/orange peels or paper/plastic. And I don't haul extra food to feed the animals. But I don't see an issue with tossing an apple core off trail (the sticky label goes in my trash bag). How is an apple core that I toss different from an apple or apple core in an old orchard where the trail passes? How is an apple core different from a black walnut or an acorn or hickory nut that might still be there a year from now? I don't toss crackers or noodles into the bushes, but if I brought spinach leaves, and they were too wilty to eat, I'll toss them in a heartbeat - no different from a gazillion other leaves from weeds, bushes, and trees.

    I don't toss anything out of a car.
    Litter is litter, organic or not. Spinach and bananas don't grow in the woods. You're potentially introducing foreign food into the diet of wildlife. What if someone took all their unwanted fruit and vegetables and threw it into your yard? Leaving no trace is leaving no trace. If your trace has to decompose for up to a year, you've left a trace. Somethings to think about.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environm...tains-scotland
    https://www.outsideonline.com/237130...%20the%20Trail

  5. #5

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    I used to toss organic matter, thinking it is no big deal. I don't do it anymore.

  6. #6

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    Yes. Aim for those discarding Vienna sausage cans into fire rings.

  7. #7
    Registered User ant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Yes. Aim for those discarding Vienna sausage cans into fire rings.
    Your Inbox is full.

    Just wanted to say received CDT. All good. Thanks again.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by ant View Post
    Your Inbox is full.

    Just wanted to say received CDT. All good. Thanks again.
    We are free; free at last.
    Lemme know if I can do anything else.
    Happy trails.
    I'm shedding a tear tonight.

  9. #9

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    I'm eco-conscious and all that but I don't get too anal about discarding apple peels/cores in the woods on my long treks. If I'm lucky I'll start a backpacking trip with some fresh items---rarely bananas as they do not pack well---or tomatoes---but oranges and apples and avocados and grapes and cabbage and cantaloupe etc. If I'm really paranoid about the Vegan-Only Thought Police I'll bury my avocado pits and orange peels etc.

    The much bigger problem are folks who leave sardine tins and beer cans and batteries and liquor bottles and tarps and fresh big piles of human defecations surrounded by wads of stained toilet paper. I won't start out 2019 with pics of these Piles.

    Last year I watched a large group of HS kids pack up at a popular spot---Naked Ground Gap in Slickrock wilderness---and once they left I pulled "butt patrol"---looking for litter. Wow, due to laziness one of them poured out a big pot of pasta RIGHT IN CAMP. And then ran like hell. Oops. Pic below---


  10. #10
    Registered User theinfamousj's Avatar
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    Worms like banana peels. The special kind of worms that are for vermicomposting bins. The peels take a while to decompose even so, but seem to attract the worms who then proceed to make additional worms.

    That said, obviously the trail isn't a vermicomposting bin. But if you wanted to start one or grow your population of wriggles or if you have a backyard you sometimes discard produce in to as some have admitted upthread ... Don't count s out!

    Orange peels, though? The dry ones make great fire starters with all that orange oil and fiber.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G890A using Tapatalk

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by theinfamousj View Post
    The peels take a while to decompose
    That surprises me, since they go from fresh to nasty so quickly on the counter and in the trash at home.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Time Zone View Post
    That surprises me, since they go from fresh to nasty so quickly on the counter and in the trash at home.
    Exactly. Id rather see more articles about tin cans and glass left in firepits and the lasting affects.

  13. #13

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    Some people naively think the shortest answer is always the only answer. "Pack it in. Pack it out." But those people don't pack out their poop. They bury it because 1) Poop decomposes and actually adds nutrients, and 2) When buried and 200+ feet from the trail it rarely impacts anyone.

    The same applies to plant life you carried, such as that being discussed in this thread. It's unsightly, so don't throw it on the ground as you hike. When you go 200 feet from the trail with your trowel you aren't going to harm the environment by making the hole a bit bigger for your organge peels. That orange peel, like the other decaying vegetation on the forest floor, creates rich top soil. You RECYCLE responsibly this way. Don't throw it in the next garbage can so someone can pay to take it to a big hole (landfill) they paid someone else to dig.

    Someone asked how we might feel if others dumped all their fruit peelings in my front yard. Bring it! Finding good compost material is time consuming. Please, bring me truck loads of that stuff.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeGoldRush View Post
    Some people naively think the shortest answer is always the only answer. "Pack it in. Pack it out." But those people don't pack out their poop. They bury it because 1) Poop decomposes and actually adds nutrients, and 2) When buried and 200+ feet from the trail it rarely impacts anyone.

    The same applies to plant life you carried, such as that being discussed in this thread. It's unsightly, so don't throw it on the ground as you hike. When you go 200 feet from the trail with your trowel you aren't going to harm the environment by making the hole a bit bigger for your organge peels. That orange peel, like the other decaying vegetation on the forest floor, creates rich top soil. You RECYCLE responsibly this way. Don't throw it in the next garbage can so someone can pay to take it to a big hole (landfill) they paid someone else to dig.

    Someone asked how we might feel if others dumped all their fruit peelings in my front yard. Bring it! Finding good compost material is time consuming. Please, bring me truck loads of that stuff.
    I'll be by tomorrow night to drop off the Christmas tree. Front lawn still OK?

  15. #15
    Wanna-be hiker trash
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    I hide them inside cairns.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  16. #16

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    Apple cores, no problem. Banana and orange peels, no way.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    Apple cores, no problem. Banana and orange peels, no way.
    This ^^^
    Apples are part of a natural diet for many wild animals. Apples (although not Golden Delicious etc) are found in the natural environment, they degrade quickly or are eaten. Bananas are not natural (here) and the skins take forever to break down, as do orange peels, and they are not eaten. My only thought with apple cores is to make sure they are discarded far away from view and from the trail/water source/camp. I have thrown the occasional one into large patches of brush.

  18. #18
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    i've left peanut shells scattered from georgia to maine and maine to georgia. hurts nothing

  19. #19
    Registered User hikermiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    i've left peanut shells scattered from georgia to maine and maine to georgia. hurts nothing
    Not so, peanut shells, Pistachio shells, banana peels, orange peels, dog crap, human crap, tissues do not belong on a trail, especially at viewpoints.

  20. #20

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    love how people respond to a thread like this by first tsk tsking what others do, then proceed to justify what they themselves throw away.

    if you packed it in you can damn well pack it out.

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