How to Compost

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What is Compost?

Composting is a natural process of recycling organic material such as leaves and vegetable scraps into a rich  soil conditioner that can be used in gardens, landscaping, urban agriculture and organic farming.

 Compostable material such as grass, trimmings, wood waste, leaves, weeds, fruits, vegetables, breads, grains, coffee grounds, egg shells, and other garden refuse may be placed in a compost pile.

The Composting Process

The process of composting involves four main ingredients: organic matter, moisture, oxygen, and bacteria.

Organic items used for the process of composting should include a combination of brown organic material, such as dead leaves, twigs, branches and green organic material, such as lawn clippings, fruits and vegetables. Brown materials supply carbon, while green materials supply nitrogen, the perfect complements for the process to work effectively.

Oxygen is another key component needed to support the breakdown of material by bacteria. To add oxygen the compost pile must be turned--this is a crucial process for an efficient and odorless compost pile.

The compost pile should be turned every 2 weeks in order for the materials to "heat up" and decompose. Once the pile has cooled in the center, decomposition of the materials has taken place. Frequent turning helps accelerate the composting process.

Compost Regulations to Keep Your Compost Pile Healthy and Odor-Free.

  • The depositing of garbage, food waste, pet waste, meat scraps, fat or grease or materials that may attract animals or pests to a compost pile or which may produce obnoxious odors is strictly prohibited.
  • A compost pile must be contained in some type of enclosure. Simple compost containers can be constructed of galvanized wire fencing or snow fence, boards, bricks, or cement blocks. It is critical that compost structures have adequate openings to allow sufficient air flow.
  • A compost pile should be at least three (3) to five (5) feet high. You may also purchase a commercially constructed container. Compost piles shall not be more than five (5) feet in height, and not have a maximum ground or base area of more than one hundred (100) square feet.
  • Compostable material must be placed in such a way that the material will not become windblown.
  • Compost piles shall only be permitted in rear yards, except that portion of the rear yard wherein a drainage easement exists, and in no case shall a compost pile be located in any front or side yard. 

Compost Collection Service

Don't have time, but still want to improve the environment and dispose of food scraps? Green Dirt Compost is currently the only provider for a residential subscription compost collection service in our area.

The residential compost subscription service works similar to the old milk jug service. Clients are provided with a 5-gallon plastic bucket with a lid and place all of their compostable waste into the container. This container is picked up weekly, and replaced with a clean, empty container to use for the following week. The collected materials are then composted using a vemicompost system at the Green Dirt Compost’s Facility.

For more information on this service, visit