Line Drying for Eco-Friendly Friday, 2nd Edition

Welcome to the 2nd edition of Eco-Friendly Friday! I know it’s still Thursday: I am posting this week’s green tip a little early because tomorrow is the 15th of the month and I have a charcutepalooza challenge post going up…

Today I’d like to talk about line drying your clothes.

Line Drying

Before I go further, I have not one, but two confessions to make. First: those clothes in the picture above? Not mine. That’s a stock photo. Because my laundry’s ugly. And second: I haven’t used my clothesline in months. Because of something called winter, which was very cold and very snowy.

So now that I’ve, um, come clean, I want to encourage both you and me to start line drying our clothes. This is something that’s very easy to do outside if you have some space and decent weather. But you aren’t limited to the outdoors if you want to line dry. I’ve been looking into getting one of these- a retractable clothes dryer– for my basement so that I don’t stop line drying in the winter, but one of these might also work if you live in the city.

The benefits of line drying are pretty obvious: by not using your dryer, you are conserving energy and saving money (if you line dried your clothes on a regular basis, I believe you’d save a few hundred dollars a year). Now that it’s starting to warm up, I’ve been going outside to hang my clothes. And you know what? I enjoy it- there’s something relaxing and meditative about it. Try it and you’ll see what I mean.

Now maybe hanging all of your laundry seems overwhelming? Well, how about aiming to hang just some of it? Half of it? Any amount of laundry that you hang cuts down on the time your dryer will need to run. If you are worried about that stiffness that can happen when you leave your clothes outside to dry, a good solution is to leave your clothes on the line until they’re 95% dry, then throw them in the dryer for just a couple of minutes to soften them up. That’s what I do.

So what are you doing to live greener these days? I want to know! Feel free to link to your eco-friendly blog content with the “linky tool” below. I’ll leave the linky up through Sunday 4/17/11.

A lot of topics fit comfortably under the eco-friendly umbrella, so I’d love to hear about the following:

* your organic gardening/small-scale farming efforts
* your support for local farms/farmer’s markets
* what you cook with your harvest/farmer’s market haul (includes recipes for canning and preserving)
* cooking efforts that save you money, cut down on packaging and allow you to eat better
* your composting and worm bin efforts
* your experiences keeping chickens, goats, cows, etc.
* your experiences with beekeeping

I also want to hear about:

* your tips for recycling and reusing things around the house instead of throwing them away
* projects you’ve done that have improved the energy efficiency of your home
* green decor ideas
* recommendations for environmentally friendly products you use
* examples of how you’ve conserved energy and/or saved money by adopting a greener lifestyle

Here are the linking up guidelines:

* Please add a link to this post somewhere in your blog post entry stating that it’s a part of this week’s Eco-Friendly Friday over at Healthy Green Kitchen.
* Make sure to link to your individual post, not to your home page.
* Make sure your post contains some element of “eco-friendliness”.
* Please only link to one blog post per blog.
* When you link, please share the subject of your post; your name and the name of your blog are optional. Sample entry: Natural Beekeeping (Winnie @ Healthy Green Kitchen)


This post is linked to Simple Lives Thursday!

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17 thoughts on “Line Drying for Eco-Friendly Friday, 2nd Edition”

  1. Pingback: Natural Flea Beetle Control, Kids and Cats in the Garden
  2. We’ve been hanging our laundry for so long that we gave our dryer away! Outside on the line in the warmer months, and in the laundry room on lines we installed close to the ceiling that we use in the winter. So easy.

    We also gave up toilet paper – much easier than it sounds. It has been a few years now, with no regrets. The word hasn’t gotten out yet about this very easy change that saves forests, probably because people are uncomfortable talking about poop, I don’t know. Now the forests in Indonesia are being clearcut, endangering tigers and other cats to make toilet paper for the USA.

  3. My HOA won’t allow me to hang clothes. My project list includes rehanging some of the cabinets in my laundry room to allow me to line dry inside.

    Funny, I’ve traveled the world and I always take pictures of clothes line drying. It doesn’t matter where you travel – you see it everywhere. Americans seem to be the only ones who find it distasteful. I see it as the great equalizer – doesn’t matter who you are – you do laundry. :)

    • Oh, that bums me out when people won’t hang their clothes (or even worse, they’re not allowed) because of “the way it looks”…sounds like line drying inside is the way to go for you…

  4. I can’t wait to hang clothes on the line again, right now the soil is too moist from snow melt and hanging heavy wet clothes would cause the posts to lean in. Last year I did not use my dryer from April through November, this year winter is hanging on longer.

    Your photo is beautiful. -Brenda

    • Winter sure is hanging on! And we’ve had so much rain the last few weeks…really makes it hard to hang clothes outside.

  5. This is so fun, Winnie! I can still smell the clean sheets on my bed after my Mom had line-dried them. I also remember them freezing in the winter!…Back in my garden this weekend. Our lemons and oranges make a great substitute for salt in my recipes these days, and my herb garden is perking up as the days grow warmer. My husband doubled lined part of our huge grow box (where our driveway used to be) with a double layer of chicken wire to keep the gophers away. They really love parsley… Still dreaming of a compost box. Our huge rain tanks are still full from spring rains. Somehow, that rainwater seems to have a wonderful effect on the garden, better than San Diego tap water.

    • Rainwater is EXCELLENT for gardens Liz. I got a rainbarrel for my garden but have to get it set up ;)

  6. Thanks for hosting. I just noticed by reading the comments that Laurie’s and my post cover the same subject.
    Anyhow, my focus is on using essential oils as pest deterrent and to increase the yield. Essential oils also affect they yield by increasing the fragrance or flavor of the fruit, flowers, or vegetables. For example, basil planted around the tomato plant will enhance the flavor of the tomatoes. It also work to add basil essential oils to the water when watering. Roses love garlic, basil and thyme as their companion plants.

    • Thanks for linking up and your post was so interesting! I am a big fan of companion planting myself!

  7. Winnie, I am totally loving this series! Though there have only been two Eco Friendly Fridays, I am already so eager to see what you’re going to post, it was a nice surprise to see it up a day early :) I know I should be thinking about drying the laundry outdoors, but I admit that I am one who likes the fabric softener smell over the sunshine dried smell (is that weird?), so I especially like the idea of drying the clothes 95% and finishing it in the dryer. To me, that’s the best of both worlds!

    • Liren, Thanks for following the series! Yes you being in CA is ideal for line drying! Do try it, with the last few minutes in the dryer and I think it will work really well for you :)

  8. Thanks for hosting, Winnie. Today I shared a post about some natural gardening tips. Did you know you can use eggshells to repel slugs and coffee grounds to keep away flea beetles? There are ideas for avoiding blossom end rot and treating mosquito bites, too.

    BTW, I was only able to use 20 characters for the title of my post, so there wasn’t room for the blog name.

  9. This is my first time using CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) for organic fruits and vegetables. I am very excited to get started canning and freezing.