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Celebrate Compost Awareness Week by Composting

May 3-9 is International Compost Awareness Week. With many of us spending more time at home, you may be sprucing up your lawn and trying your hand at gardening. Home composting is an easy way to turn organic waste (food scraps, leaves, plant trimmings and branches) into a soil enhancement, which improves the quality of the soil. It’s also a great way to get children involved in caring for the environment.

Composting works by mixing food waste with yard waste and letting microbes break it down into a dark, crumbly mixture that can be used to improve the soil and reduce your use of fertilizer and water. If you haven’t tried home composting, Spring is a great time to start! You’ll need a compost bin, a pitch fork, and access to a garden hose for water. You can purchase a bin at a local hardware store or online. Or if you’re handy, you can make your own.

Before you set up a backyard compost bin, contact your city about rules and restrictions. Then visit our website to find out what items you can put in your bin, and how to make it work.

If backyard composting is not your thing or you live in an apartment, you can use our food scraps collection program instead. Ramsey County has a free program for recycling fruit and vegetable peels, egg shells, bones, coffee grounds and other food scraps into compost. We offer collection at all seven yard waste sites during hours of operation. We also have 24/7 collection sites in Falcon Heights, Maplewood, New Brighton, Roseville, Saint Anthony, Saint Paul, Vadnais Heights and White Bear Lake. All sites are currently open.

Posted on Sunday, April 30, 2017 - 8:07 a.m.