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Happy Earth Day: Let's Compost!

The happy faces of GBC composting: Margery Scotti, VP Horticulture; Kathy Kling Horticulture volunteer and Beth Cavanaugh Marketing and Sales Director.

Happy Earth Day! It should not come as a surprise that we here at Greenwich Botanical Center consider every day to be earth day. In that spirit, this blog will offer easy and practical tips that could be put to use today and every day thereafter. Working together as a community we have the power to impact the health and future of our planet.

This week we are talking composting with Director of Horticulture, Lisa Beebe and Greenhouse Volunteer, Kathy Kling. According to Lisa, "Composting will build good soil for your garden and is one of the most effective and rewarding ways to reduce waste."

Composting quickly becomes an obsession habit and according Kathy, “Once you get into the habit...throwing out lettuce leaves is akin to tossing garbage out of your car window as you drive. It just becomes a major faux pas.” Don't be surprised if you start sneaking table scraps into your purse at dinner parties hosted by non-composting friends. We won't judge.

Horticulture volunteer Kathy Kling's 4-step DIY composting routine.

Kathy insists that no expensive or fancy new equipment is necessary to get started. “Simply keep a bucket by your sink. Fill it up with compostable waste as you clear your kitchen. Keep another 10-15 gallon animal proof trash bin right outside your kitchen door. You should be able to easily lift and carry this bin when it's full of your compostable waste.

In your yard construct a simple 3 foot x 3 foot compost bin using welded wire fencing and four posts. Kathy suggests lining the inside with common concrete blocks to keep the compost from seeping out, but this is not necessary. Composting material can be ready to use as early as one month, depending on what you are composting and what method you choose to follow.

Use your compost to fill in holes in your garden or as a mulch to keep weeds down. The organic matter and nutrients feed your plants and keep gardening costs to a minimum.

"...compost is nutrient rich and will eliminate the need for synthetics fertilizers in your garden, which is helpful for the planet and your wallet."

Lisa Beebe, GBC Director of Horticulture

For Lisa Beebe, one of compostings main benefits, besides reduced landfill waste, is that your "...compost is nutrient rich and will eliminate the need for synthetic fertilizers in your garden, which is helpful for the planet and your wallet." When you consider a bag of compost can cost up to $50, over time your composting pays for itself. This means no wasteful packaging, travel time or added expense of store bought product. Oh, and a beautiful, healthy garden.

Keep us posted. Have you started composting recently? Ask us for help. Send us tips. Post your composting pictures to social media using #GBC1957. We'd love to hear from you and share your story with our community.

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