Newfoundland’s Bevy of Bins

When traveling in a new place, even the most ordinary of things can become fascinating. While most people spending time in Newfoundland can’t take their eyes off the rugged coastline, beautiful mountains, or charming villages, we can’t stop staring at trash bins.

Thankfully, the mass-produced plastic trash can that thrives on the mainland is not yet an invasive species here. The trash bins here are sturdy and wooden, and more often than not they have some unique touch that sets them apart from their immediate neighbors. Though it’s somewhat embarrassing to say, we have spent more time studying the many subspecies of Refuse newfoundland than we have most of the animals and plants we’ve come across.

At least we can take comfort in the fact that we are not alone. We’ve found at least one other blog (Holes in My Shoes) that shares our fascination with sanitation, but it seems like this hobby can be hazardous to a blog’s health as it has not been updated in several years. Don’t worry about us, though. We always keep a safe distance from the trash bins we study and carry a back-up bottle of hand sanitizer.

In the end, we can only wonder if our car stereo, chock full of Sesame Street songs, is to blame. By the 20th time listening to Oscar the Grouch croon about how much he loves trash, the message is bound to rub off on you. If you decide to sing along with Oscar below, don’t say we didn’t warn you.

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16 thoughts on “Newfoundland’s Bevy of Bins

  1. I’ve heard people say that often times CFA’s (Come From Away’s) ask why we make our garbage boxes octagon shaped. Do you know the answer??

    • We have yet to find out why all the garbage boxes are octagon shaped. We did float around the idea that they are the assigned project for the high school shop classes. We both had to make book shelves when we were in school 🙂 We are definitely curious, so let us know if you can shed some light on these interesting bins.

      • The reason why many of them are octagon shaped is, at first when these wooden garbage boxes were being made, many were made from spools used to hold cable and rope. The octagon shape was the easiest to reproduce to look like the circular ones created from the spools. It looks like the 2 bottom photos are of garbage boxes made from spools or at least the green garbage box is. The round and octagon boxes are usually several centimeters off the ground to try to keep rodents from getting inside and eating the garbage.

      • Thanks so much for clearing up the reason for the octagon shape. Now that you mention it, we can see the resemblance to the big spools. And why they are usually off the ground makes sense too 🙂

  2. I noticed these the first time I visited Newfoundland, too. I called them Garbage Traps, because they reminded me of lobster traps… but for garbage.

    We just got one a few months ago. I still need to re-paint it, though. 🙂

    • Great name! They do look a lot like the wooden lobster traps. We love coming across the more brightly colored bins. They look nice especially on a foggy Newfoundland day.

  3. My favourite trash bin looks like a carnation can of milk! It is located on Random Island, NL (just outside of Clarenville).

  4. We painted our bin bright red with big white stars so that people could find our driveway leading to the Lead Cove Hostel. Now nobody can miss us! Nice photo project.

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