If you don’t know anything about composting or haven’t given composting a try, May 29, National Learn About Composting Day is a great day to get into the mix. Compost, also known as Black Gold, is decomposed organic waste materials from your yard or your kitchen or both that is added to vegetable gardens or other planting areas to improve the soil. Composting is a natural process, so anyone can do it, and the materials are free. It is also great for the earth and your own garden. Among its many benefits, compost builds healthier soil, reduces the need for watering and fertilizing, improves drainage, supports healthier plants that are less susceptible to pests and diseases, increases weed resistance, and keeps organic materials out of our limited capacity landfills.
Want to learn more?
Check out these resources and begin a composting adventure:
- Composting to Reduce the Waste Stream – A Guide to Small Scale Food and Yard Waste Composting – Virginia Tech Composting Brochure
- Composting – Official Website of Arlington County Virginia Government (arlingtonva.us)
- Yard Waste Recycling
- Composting At Home
- Preventing Animal Nuisances in Small Scale Composting
- Master Gardeners of Northern Virginia also has a virtual class on composting: The Art of Composting.
Backyard composting not possible for you?
Don’t feel left out. In addition to recycling yard waste, Arlington County and the City of Alexandria compost certain food scraps. Learn more at:
- Food Scrap Collections – Arlington County https://www.arlingtonva.us/Government/Programs/Recycling-and-Trash/Residential/Organics-Waste/Food-Scraps-Collection
Do you live in an Arlington neighborhood that doesn’t get Arlington County Residential trash pick up (such as Fairlington)? Arlingtonians are able to deliver food waste to the Earth Recycling Yard at the Arlington County Trades Center from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday.
- Food Waste Composting Stations | City of Alexandria, VA (alexandriava.gov)
There are also commercial companies that will pick up your food scraps and return the finished product, compost, to you.
MGNV.org is your go to resource for your gardening questions. If you need hands on help, this website has plant clinics and Help desk info. Let us help you create success.