Thursday, July 4, 2013

Ten tips to keep your compost bin healthy all summer

Ten tips for a healthy compost bin this summer

We’re on a mission to make our compost bin less smelly this summer and we’d like to prevent another crop of bugs from hatching too. These things don’t make the compost cart unusable but they do make it a little unpleasant during the summer.  

If you’re not composting yet consider this: composting can divert up to 40% of your household waste from the landfill. That means fewer bags sent to the curb every two weeks and it means that all of that food waste can go back into the earth in a productive way. Sure, food will eventually decompose in the landfill but it takes a good long time and it’s unproductive. It’s much better to turn compostables into compost, the ultimate form of recycling.  

The composts produced at the Crane Mountain compost facility is Grade A quality and is available for sale, in large and small quantities. Contact Crane Mountain for details. 

Backyard compost piles are great but if that’s not your thing curbside composting is an easy and convenient alternative. Even if you do have a backyard pile there are loads of things that can go in the curbside bin that are best kept out of a home composting pile, including meat and fish scraps and pet poop.  

This is what we have been doing to keep our compost bin more manageable during the summer:

  1. Crumple paper in the bottom of the bin to help absorb liquid.
  2. Add yard waste to the bin to mix up the composition of the contents.
  3. Sprinkle in baking soda or garden lime to help absorb odours and to make it less hospitable to bugs.
  4. Don’t overfill your kitchen compost bags. Leave enough room to tie them closed so the contents don’t spill when they’re in the cart. It will make it easier to keep the cart clean.
  5. Wrap meat and fish scraps in newspaper before putting them in the bin, or freeze them and toss them in the bin the morning of pick up day.
  6. Pet poop can go in your compost bin. Wrap it in newspaper. Dog poop needs to be in compostable bags. (Most dog poop bags are just biodegradable, so aren’t compostable. )
  7. Store your cart in the shade, or at least out of direct sunlight.
  8. Hose out your compost cart after it has been emptied to keep it clean and use a toilet brush to scrub any caked on gunk. You can scrub it with warm water and borax.
  9. You can also buy the full cart liners (in compostable “plastic” bags or compostable paper cart liners.)
Remember on compost pick up day you can also put out extra yard waste that doesn’t fit in the cart. Just insure it’s in compostable bags.

Always put your cart out on collection day. 

Giving your compost cart this little extra attention during the summer months can help to keep it healthier, and a lot more manageable.
Visit Fundy Recycles for more information on the care and feeding of your compost cart.

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