5 tips you need to know about spring cleaning in Mississauga

 

It's that time of the year again, Mississauga — time to tidy up both inside and outside your home for spring cleaning.

This past winter was definitely an unusual one due to the pandemic. We were all staying at home a lot more often than we thought we'd be, and that likely contributed to a lot more clutter in the house that now needs to be taken care of.

If you're currently in the process of spring cleaning, here are five essential tips to make the process more bearable and make a more environmentally friendly impact:

1. Gather all the waste from your yard and make sure to dispose of it properly.

 Yards tend to look rather messy in the transition from winter to spring. Now's the time to pick up any fallen branches and twigs, dog poop, pine cones, leaves, and any other waste lying around. Once you've gathered it all up, it's important to dispose of it properly. Items like leaves, yard rakings with debris, tree trimmings, branches, brush, hedge trimmings, and household and garden plants are all accepted in Peel's yard waste program.

RBC's GarbageDay app provides helpful reminders on garbage and recycling pickup as well as when your yard waste can get picked up. You can also check Peel's website.

2. Donate unwanted items instead of throwing them out.

Cleaning the inside of your home inevitably means finding a lot of old stuff that you'll be tempted to just toss into the garbage bin, but remember the old adage: "One man's trash is another man's treasure." Consider donating stuff you don't need to someone else in the community who may get more use out of it, or simply drop off your donations at a Peel Community Recycling Centre. Items you might donate include clothing and textiles, furniture, or old electronics. Other places that usually accept donations are Salvation Army thrift stores, Habitat for Humanity (pick-up available), and Diabetes Canada, to name just a few. Make sure to check with each organization to see if they’re offering pick-up during the pandemic.

3. Reuse items or upcycle them to make something new.

Everyone knows about recycling, but have you heard of upcycling? It's when you reuse waste items and material to create something new and even better than what you used to make it. Artist and television personality Tiffany Pratt has been featured multiple times on the GarbageDay Blog for doing just that. She's used common waste items like cardboard boxes, empty toilet paper rolls, and old newspapers to create a variety of creative and useful items: DIY gift wrap, an organizer kit, a hanging planter and an outdoor planter. It's amazing what you can make with a little bit of effort and creativity!

4. Trade or sell items such as clothing so they don't just end up in the garbage.

Donating is a great and worthy cause, but it can also be nice to give something and get something in return. Consider trading unwanted items, such as organizing a clothing swap with friends (virtually until local guidelines allow for gatherings again). You can also trade and sell clothing/accessories on platforms like Plato's Closet, Kid to Kid, SheCycle, or on Designer Swap, a Canadian luxury consignment service for designer goods. Beyond clothing, there are several popular sites and apps (such as Kijiji and LetGo) that are set up for users to find other people they can trade with. If you decide to do a trade in Mississauga, consider using one of the city's two safe exchange zones to do it safely.

If you can't reuse or give something away and it does have to be thrown out or recycled, remember that the GarbageDay app provides convenient reminders on garbage and recycling pickup.

5. Get your lawn, yard and garden ready for the summer months.

Spring cleaning is the perfect time to revitalize your yard and get it ready for the warm months ahead. That means tuning up your lawnmower (replace the oil and spark plugs if you haven't already) so you'll be able to cut the grass and keep your lawn and yard looking clean. If you plan on doing some gardening, now's the time to tidy up and prepare your garden beds. The GarbageDay Blog recommends starting by removing and composting any dead annual plants that remained over winter, and removing any dead leaves and stalks from perennials and ornamental grasses that you didn't remove in the fall. Any deep layers of mulch should also be carefully removed.

Happy spring cleaning, Mississauga! If you found these tips useful, there's plenty more where they came from — download GarbageDay for waste pickup reminders and useful tips, or visit the GarbageDay Blog for more helpful articles, such as How to Get Rid of Anything: Your Guide to Trash-Free Cleaning.

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