ECDRR does not offer any county wide composting programs. Check with your local municipality about composting in your neighborhood. Some municipalities operate their own drop-off and/or pick-up services separate from the ECDRR and are limited to residents of the operating municipality.
Starting to compost at home is a much simpler task than it sounds. There are many benefits to composting some of which include: overall waste reduction, landfill waste diversion, and soil enrichment. Listed below are simplified steps to household composting for additional information please contact ECDRR directly or visit www.epa.gov.
1. Chose a location in your yard
- The ideal spots are dry, shaded, and close to a water source
- Ideally you would have two compost piles - to alternate usage
2. Create boxes, bins, or piles
- You can purchase compost bin/box from most local hardware stores, you can build your own - it simply needs to be accessible, or you can make a pile
3. Understand acceptable and unacceptable food wastes
- Keeping unacceptable food wastes out of the compost pile will not only lessen the smell, but also help limit the attraction of unwanted pests/scavengers.
Acceptable Food Wastes
Unacceptable Food Wastes
Highly processed foods
4. Add waste materials
- Follow the browns and greens ratio: 1:1 or equal amounts of each.
- Browns = Leaves, branches, twigs, and etc.
- Greens = Vegetable clippings, food scraps, grass clippings, and etc.
- Ensure small and varied particle size of both browns and greens
- All materials should be chopped into smaller pieces and should vary in size, this will ensure quicker and more even breakdown of materials
5. Water and turn (processing)
- Add water when adding a larger quantity of materials
- Turn using a shovel or pitch fork, this helps distribute water and materials evenly
- To help limit the smell be sure to bury food scrapes under other materials – 10 inches is recommended
6. “Set” period
- Still process at desired frequency but do not add new waste materials
- Ensures even and thorough decomposition
7. Utilize the final product (compost) and start the process over
- Compost is generally used as a soil enhancer for vegetable or flower gardens