Home composting - Ana


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Home composting - Ana

  1. 1. Composting 101 September 12, 2009
  2. 2. What is Composting? <ul><li>A simple way to recycle your yard trimmings and protect the environment! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Grass </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Leaves </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Garden trimmings </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Composting is a natural process in which yard waste materials decompose into a dark, nutrient-rich, sweet-smelling soil conditioner. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Benefits of Composting <ul><li>Saves by reducing the need to use synthetic fertilizers. </li></ul><ul><li>Increases the productivity of lawns and gardens by improving soil fertility and health. </li></ul><ul><li>Saves water by helping soil retain moisture. </li></ul><ul><li>Reduces water runoff from rain and melting snow. </li></ul><ul><li>Benefits the environment by recycling valuable organic resources back into the soil. </li></ul>
  4. 4. The Compost Equation <ul><li>Brown </li></ul><ul><li>Material </li></ul>+ Green Material Air Water + = COMPOST +
  5. 5. Composting at Home <ul><li>What works best for you? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hot vs. Cool Composting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Hot: faster results, requires additional maintenance </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Cool: slower results, less labor involved </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bin vs. No Bin </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Bin: prevents heat loss, retains moisture, aesthetics </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No Bin: easier to turn materials; less labor </li></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Acceptable Materials to Compost <ul><li>Carbon - brown materials such as: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>dry leaves -cotton rags </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>woodchips -dryer lint </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>straw </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>sawdust </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Nitrogen - green materials such as: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>plant trimmings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>grass -coffee grounds </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>flowers -fresh hay </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>pruning -tea bags </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>nut shells </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. How to Compost <ul><li>Place some branches on the bottom (not necessary) </li></ul><ul><li>Add brown materials and green materials until the bin is full. </li></ul><ul><li>Water lightly. </li></ul><ul><li>Turn your compost pile every week or two. Move the dry materials from the edges of the pile into the middle of the pile. </li></ul><ul><li>Your compost will be “ready” in one to four months (this will vary). Before using the finished compost, let the compost sit for at least two weeks. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Tips to Remember <ul><li>Get the right temperature </li></ul><ul><li>Keep the pile moist </li></ul><ul><li>Let the pile </li></ul>BREATHE
  9. 9. Aerating the Pile
  10. 10. Troubleshooting Add brown materials such as dry leaves, dry straw or shredded paper. <ul><li>The compost pile is emitting an odor – a well maintained pile seldom has a bad odor. </li></ul>Add green materials such as grass clippings and turn the pile to aerate. <ul><li>Nothing is happening </li></ul>Add brown materials such as dry leaves, dry straw, shredded paper, or sawdust. <ul><li>The compost pile is too wet – this stops any activity in your compost pile </li></ul>Add water and/or green materials such as grass clippings. You want the pile to feel moist to the touch similar to a wet sponge. <ul><li>The compost pile is too dry – bacteria needs moisture to survive and reproduce </li></ul>Solution Problem
  11. 11. “ It’s Worth the Time!”
  12. 12. The Result <ul><li>Healthy Plant Growth </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Proper root growth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Good” bacteria growth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Maintains health of plants </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Suppression of diseases </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Slow release of nutrients into soil </li></ul></ul>Control Soil With Compost Brinton, William F., Soil - Plant - Compost, Woods End Research Laboratory
  13. 13. Internet Resources for Composting Information <ul><li>www.montgomerycountymd.gov/recycling </li></ul><ul><li>www.mde.state.md.us/Programs/LandPrograms/Recycling/Education/compostinfo.asp </li></ul><ul><li>www.epa.gov/epaoswer/non-hw/composting/index.htm </li></ul><ul><li>www.p2pays.org/compost/composting101.asp </li></ul><ul><li>www.compostingcouncil.org </li></ul><ul><li>www.css.cornell.edu/compost/Composting_Homepage.html </li></ul>
  14. 14. Any Questions <ul><li>Montgomery County </li></ul><ul><li>Department of Environmental Protection </li></ul><ul><li>Division of Solid Waste Services </li></ul><ul><li>Waste Reduction and Recycling Section </li></ul><ul><li>101 Monroe Street, 6 th Floor </li></ul><ul><li>Rockville, MD 20850 </li></ul><ul><li>240-777-6400 (Phone) </li></ul><ul><li>240-777-6442 (TTY) </li></ul><ul><li>240-777-6465 (Fax) </li></ul><ul><li>www.montgomerycountymd.gov/recycling </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>