From the Rotline: Aerobic Composting and Anaerobic Digestion – What’s the Difference?
This was an inquiry to our community Rotline, a hotline where community members may ask composting and waste questions and receive step-by-step answers from one of our expert staff members. Rotline Question: What is the temperature range for a compost pile that has gone anaerobic? Answer: Anaerobic digestion can occur at two temperature ranges: between…Read More
Worm Tea, Compost Tea & Leachate
Did you know that you can steep your finished compost or vermicompost in water to create a nutrient-rich liquid called “compost tea” that enriches soil and reduces plant pests and disease? Worm tea, a type of compost tea made from vermicompost, has the same benefits as worm castings but in liquid form. Castings are produced…Read More
Rainwater is Great in your Compost Pile!
You might hear our educators telling you to take the lid off your compost bin when rain is in the forecast. Why is that so important? First, the rainwater is free hydration for your bin. Compost bins are frequently dry in our Southern California climate. Also, rainwater is basically pure…there are no chemicals or salts,…Read More
Mental Wellness And Gardening
Written by Master Composter Volunteer Mary Purpura, MA, HTR If you garden and compost, you know there are many physical benefits. Digging, hand tilling and turning compost piles can all increase your heart rate, offering a boon to your cardiovascular system. Weeding and planting maintain and improve hand strength. All that time spent outdoors tying…Read More
How to Manage Weeds Without Toxic Chemicals
What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered. — Ralph Waldo Emerson Before discussing how to eliminate weeds, there are some common weeds that are both edible and nutritious. Harvesting free greens from our gardens is one way to approach the plants we did not intend to have in our…Read More
Can Weeds be Composted?
April showers bring May flowers but March showers just seem to bring WEEDS! We’ve being getting lots of questions about putting those weeds into a compost pile. There is not a simple yes or no answer to this query. Weeds have many nutrients so they are a great addition to the compost pile, but you…Read More
Prepping Your Fall Garden
“Land, then, is not merely soil; it is a fountain of energy flowing through a circuit of soils, plants and animals.” Aldo Leopol…Read More
From the Rotline: How Do I Add Compost to Container Plants?
Container gardening is an incredible solution to a variety of growing woes, especially when it comes to the creative and economical use of space. Gardeners lacking backyards or yards with full sun exposure, gardeners working with truly difficult soil, and new gardeners looking to gain confidence in the craft are common beneficiaries of the practice.…Read More
Critters in Your Compost! (ID Guide)
Compost is ALIVE! Curious about what’s living in your compost? The physical and chemical conditions in a compost heap seem logical if you think about what compost really is–a big pile of food for billions of minute organisms. These microorganisms have certain chemical requirements, primarily: carbon for energy, nitrogen to build proteins, and oxygen for…Read More