Monday, 21 May 2012

Two Top Tips

This is my almost empty tube of toothpaste, I remember buying it ages ago, it must be at least six months old. I reckon there is still another couple of weeks worth of toothpaste left in there, and I shall be squeezing it till I can't squeeze any more out, then I will cut it open and get every last bit out of it.

Do you remember the toothpaste ads on the tele, how they squirt a long sausage out and apply it to the full length of the brush. This is how much I use, just a small amount is enough to fill your mouth with froth.

And here is my new tube ready to take over. It cost 30p. You don't need to pay mega bucks for a clean mouth, just some good honest scrubbing with a basic toothpaste, and flossing which doesn't cost very much at all. My toothbrush is a cheapie and does the same job as a silly priced posh one. And forget about mouthwash. If ever there was a more useless unnecessary product invented, it has to be mouthwash. How ever did we manage without it? We just did.

You're getting your money's worth tonight, two top tips for the price of one, ha ha. No half measures here, me hearty's. Today I planted my runner beans out. I needed something to tie the canes to the frame I built over the raised beds. If you are going to do this job you might be building a wigwam with your canes, this tip will work equally well. If you need something to tie climbing plants to the canes, don't go out to the garden centre and buy a ball of twine.

Instead, get yourself a charity bag out of the drawer where you have hundreds stashed away. Lay one out flat on the table and cut the bottom off. Then cut strips about 1.5 inches wide all along it.

Take one strip and open it out into a circle.

Cut through each end. If you want long ties you can use these as they are. But if you want shorter ties, cut them in half.

And there you are. As many free ties as you want, to tie your tomato plants up, your beans to the canes, support your cucumber plants, in fact use them for anything you like.

It's going to be sunny tomorrow, I might go for a walk. Toodle pip.


  1. That's all I ever use Ilona. I think it's such a waste to use more. My husband uses like the TV shows I think and won't listen if I tell him it's not necessary. Our dentist says it doesn't matter what you brush your teeth with so long as you brush them!

  2. To tie up plants, I use old knee highs or panty hose saved for just that purpose. I cut them in strips, also. Scraps from old clothes work, too. I have twine here, but won't waste it when something else will do the job.

  3. I always put my toothpaste across the brush, not lengthwise. Just the right amount!

    Another source for garden ties is strips of old cotton t-shirts that have made their way (finally!) into the rag bag. Funny, I was just cutting up a rag yesterday for cleaning, and thought "soon I'll be planting tomatoes!" Looking forward to seeing your garden this year, Ilona :)

  4. The demonstration in ads of the the way to put on toothpaste really annoys me. I know people who do use that much so they will have a really foamy mouth. I know people who do it because it looks nice on the toothbrush. I get a little pea-sized bit or a smear on mine, and my toothpaste lasts 6 month to 9 months, depending on how large the tube. Even though I get all my tubes free with coupons or for just the tax (9 cents), I am still cautious about the amount of toothpaste I use. Yes, I cut it open, too.

    I do think plain mouthwash is of value. However, the expensive ones that promise ridiculous things are a waste.

  5. I'm with you on the tooth paste. But at my age and with my teeth, gingivitis is a problem. We have an anti-bacterial mouthwash called Listerine. Saved me a lot of money with a periodontist!

  6. I too have been doing that for years, and agree with PP - I like a mouthwash but just a cheapie from the £ shop and it lasts ages.
    I use strips of fabric from my rag work to tie up plants. Waste not want not eh ?

  7. Mouth wash - I dilute TCP works a treat and I use own brand TCP. not as plesant but mightily effective! and a small drop lasts and lasts and lasts. I like TCP and its brands- good for everything! if you read the back of the bottle it tells you - great for mouth ulcers adn all sorts.

    Am with you on toothpast - across not along!

  8. ElaineInPhilly22 May 2012 at 17:47

    Plastic strips (or strips of tee-shirts) -- I cut them the same way as you then inter-loop the ends to make long strips then crochet them into front-door/shoe mats or sink mats, shopping bags, stair tread mats, stool pads, garden kneelers, pet beds, the list keeps growing. Sometimes I make circles, sometimes I knit or crochet back and forth. I change the size of the needles or the hook; it depends on how wide I cut the strips and what I'm trying to make. I even made a "bed mat" for under my sleeping bag because my egg crate cushion started to crumble (age!). Stay well and happy, Ilona. It's only nine days until I become a retiree. Heaven!

  9. Elaine - I've always wanted to try working with plastic strips, I must give it a go. I like the idea of kneeling mats now it looks like we can get out in the garden at last !

  10. I remember on my aunties veg and fruit plot, things being tied up with cut up stockings.

    Agree about toothpaste having enough left in a cut up tube for another week or so. I like mouthwash though,but only use a basic one they do everything all the fancy ones do.

  11. Wonderful tips, especially about the mouthwash. I finally got my retired hubby off the expensive stuff. I showed him that he can use hydrogen peroxide. He did not believe me...he had to read the label. It works great as a whitener too. I buy a large bottle (32 oz) for about $1.00 and I can also use it around the house. Great for a pre-soak on whites in the laundry.


  12. My sons dentist told us to only use a tiny amount of toothpaste - as small as a pea I seem to remember. I'm not so keen on the value toothpaste as the taste is so mild I like it to be really minty. But what I have done to save money is use the value toothpaste at night and the stronger toothpaste in the morning. Never use mouthwash agree its a waste of money. I always cut the tube open and seal it with a peg to stop it drying out.

    Great idea with the plastic bags. Like Sals View said I use cut up old tights as ties.

  13. Hi quinn, don't expect too much from my garden, I'm not spending a lot of time on it. As long as I get a few basics like potatoes, courgettes, runner beans, and carrots, I'll be happy. It will stop me running to the shop too often.

    Hi Elaine. I have knitted yarn made from plastic bags, into shopping bags, posted elsewhere on this blog about it. You need to be sure that the bags are not biodegradable.

    I cannot bring myself to wash my mouth out with anything. Just brushing and clean water does me fine.

  14. Mouthwash is all about consumer capitalism - they got people to be terrified of bad breath = mouthwash! It's complete rubbish and I wonder whether it causes mouth cancer.

  15. I'm with you 100% on toothpaste, mine lasts at least six months and I brush three times a day - just a smear of paste will foam and make my mouth feel fresh. I'm not keen on mouthwash as I always seemed to swallow some - not nice.

  16. They've made the toothpaste tube holes even bigger over the years. It just makes me more careful to use less :) Great tips!