Composting at Home

Composting food is a great way to remove food from the waste stream and create a natural soil rich with nutrients to fertilize your garden. To create a perfect compost, you need a mix of 75% nitrogen-rich and 25% carbon-rich items.

Nitrogen-rich ingredients include:

  • breads, grains and pasta
  • coffee grounds and filters
  • tea bags
  • eggshells
  • grass clippings
  • vegetable and fruit scraps

Carbon-rich ingredients include:

  • Leaves
  • Small or chopped branches, twigs, sticks
  • Paper towels
  • Shredded paper
  • Straw

DO NOT use these items:

  • Pet manure
  • Pesticide treated plants
  • Meats
  • Grease or cooking oil
  • Bones
  • Dairy products
  • Treated wood
  • Weed plants

You can form a compost pile in your backyard using a shaded area that is well-drained. You may also want to invest in a composting bin, which keeps materials protected and confined.

To learn how you can create the perfect compost pile, check out the these tips from the EPA and look out for our annual Master Composters program.


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