Garbage picking accessories - for small volumes
May 4, 2021 11:07 AM   Subscribe

Our family have taken to bringing a grabber thing on walks so that we can pick up garbage. We do not have a non-gross way of holding the (small) bag. What works for you?

We take short walks, and rarely collect more than 1/4 of a grocery-bag's worth of trash. So far, we just take a bag, and one person holds it open while the other drops the trash inside. It works, but sometimes the trash is a bit more disgusting than I'd like, so the bag holder's job is quite unpleasant.
I'm picturing something like a butterfly net, but much smaller and... not a net. Or maybe some kind of bucket-onna-stick?

If you'd be so kind as to link to images of what works, I would appreciate it. All of my searching so far has led to techniques for BIG garbage cleanups, where the bag is a big drum liner. I'm looking for something that is incidental to the walk, not the whole purpose of it.
posted by Acari to Grab Bag (9 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I have one of these hooked on to my dog's leash to hold poop bags, and it's been great. You could thread it through the handle of the grabber thing and then put one of the grocery bag handles into the bag-holder while you are actively collecting, I think. But interested in what others suggest. It's great that you're doing this! One of my neighbors routinely comes home with a full bag every time he goes out, so at least your neighbors are possibly less thoughtless than ours.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 11:13 AM on May 4 [2 favorites]

posted by Acari to Grab Bag
Seldom do we find such a perfect category.

How about a 2-5 gallon plastic bucket with handle? Commonly available, relatively inexpensive, long lasting, doesn't leak, and hoses out when it's nasty. Downside: gets really nasty.
posted by enfa at 11:14 AM on May 4 [14 favorites]

I would get a beat-up old tennis racket or equivalent from the thrift store, clip and remove all the net, and use binder clips to add a trash bag, to make a trash-bag-onna-stick creation.
posted by blnkfrnk at 11:30 AM on May 4 [19 favorites]

What about a small wagon? Or even better yet, a remote-controlled buggy car...
posted by many more sunsets at 11:35 AM on May 4 [2 favorites]

You need a bag holder opener like this or this or this or this. Keeps the bag open so you don't have to grab the business end of it, provides physical distance from the bag itself.
posted by phunniemee at 11:43 AM on May 4 [10 favorites]

if you're just using a small bag, you could also literally just repurpose an embroidery hoop - e.g. like this one:
posted by brainmouse at 12:54 PM on May 4 [3 favorites]

Can you bring a spare set of gardening gloves for the bag-holder, maybe in a separate ziploc? That’s what we use for beach cleanup.

Edited to say this assumes you’re trying to avoid hand contamination from gross stuff going in; if general noxiousness is the issue go for a bag-onna-stick.
posted by scyllary at 1:00 PM on May 4

Technically a bucket on a stick used for garbage is a dustpan. This poop-scooper has a dustpan that is meant to hold bags (we've always make grocery bags work fine, rather than their proprietary ones). I can vouch that the dustpan in that set is pretty solid; the rake is not but until it breaks you could take it along as a secondary trash-scooper.
posted by Lyn Never at 1:43 PM on May 4

If you fold the bag over before adding stuff to it, then the edge and outside of the bag never get yucky. It took me a while of watching America's Test Kitchen to finally understand why they always folded over their ziploc bags before adding stuff. Demonstrated here.
posted by hydra77 at 2:28 PM on May 4 [2 favorites]

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