Admittedly, this isn't exactly "gardening", but I can't separate what I do here on the farm with what I do in the world. And a big step, after starting the process of "cleaning up" our act here at the farm, is carrying that commitment with me out into the rest of the world.
With our setup here on the farm (bearing in mind that this is hardly a farm, just 5 acres of land with house, small barn, hoop house, chicken coop, half-hearted orchards (I'll rant about trying to grow apples in Tidewater another day) and gardens. We are the smallest of what Hobby Farms magazine targets when they say "Hobby Farm".
It's enough to give us a nice full circle, however. We recycle in about a dozen ways. Our paper, bottles, cans and all of that go to the standard city recycling system - which really doesn't accept much, given all the plastics not accepted. Yes, I use my own shopping bags (love those big insulated bags that Bloom now sells!) for our groceries and other shopping. but the corporate packaging on everything from individually wrapped muffins to "fresh" vegetables is just horrendous.
Food scraps? Those are for the chickens. They love 'em! I offer them up with their regular corn and feed and the girls munch away. What doesn't interest them gets scratched around with the grass clippings and leaves that are also tossed into the run for the chooks to play with. They scratch and hunt and scratch and hunt.... and, eventually, I get to shovel up delicious compost for the garden: turned, churned and fertilized. Now, that's a win-win!
Starting to track of all of this for the No Impact Experiment really makes you think about everything! http://usefulgardens.blogspot.com/2010/09/no-impact-project.html