Last weekend, while taking a break from harvesting vegetables in my mom's garden, I looked up to see my stepdad carrying a rather strange contraption. He had a long rope and two white planks with notches in the top and stakes at the bottom. He tied one end of the rope around our 100-year-old pecan tree, and walked the other side down to an arbor...
...Where he had a system of hooks to tie the line to. Splitting the stretched line into three parts, he anchored the planks and popped the line on top of them to keep the line from sinking when wet clothes were draped over it.
And that's when I realized he'd just put up the longest clothesline I'd ever seen. My mom saw me staring from side to side--a good 40 feet--and said, "Well, honey, there's just nothing like sun-dried sheets and clothes!"
Granted, my mom's backyard is much bigger than our apartment patio, but this was one impressive way to dry laundry. The two of them, already big proponents of saving energy, have completely stopped using two appliances: the dryer and the dishwasher. And they say that their energy bills have sunk lower than ever, even as the Texas summer begins!
So there you have it, a country clothesline that's not only saving money and energy, but was made from things lying around the house. A great green innovation.