Did you know that composting transforms your yard and garden trimmings, such as grass clippings, leaves, and garden prunings, into a dark, crumbly, sweet-smelling material that naturally enriches the soil?
When you compost, you create an environment for organisms to break down carbon-rich “brown” material, such as dried leaves and wood chips; and nitrogen-rich “green” material, including grass clippings and flowers. The carbon and nitrogen materials decompose and become a high-nutrient soil amendment that you can mix into soil and use in your garden.
All it takes is a compost bin (preferably), a mixture of organic materials, water, a pitchfork or shovel, and some time.
To learn more about composting yard trim, including locations where County residents can pick-up a backyard compost bin at no additional charge, visit MontgomeryCountyMD.gov/yardtrim.
Composting food scraps, such as vegetable peelings, requires more steps and monitoring, to reduce odors and the risk of pests.
Montgomery County, Maryland requires the use of a rodent-proof compost bin, with a tight-fitting lid, to compost food scraps. Adding food scraps in an open compost pile or in a compost bin with no lid, is problematic because this attracts rodents and other pests. The compost bins currently provided by the County are designed for composting yard trim, because they are completely open on the top and the bottom and have aerating holes all around the sides. Please keep food scraps out of these bins. During FY21, we will evaluate and test a variety of compost bins that successfully deter rodents and demonstrate their effectiveness and use.
For more information on food scraps recycling, visit our website.
Try worm bin composting. Check out our next series of blog posts on worm bin composting.
Residents may also consider separating their food scraps for recycling and hiring a collector who will collect and deliver the food scraps to a composting facility in the region. Your food scraps will be used to create a great compost material.
If you’re interested, here is a list of food scraps recycling collectors serving Montgomery County customers. (Please note that Montgomery County has compiled this listing through various sources and does not present it as a complete directory of all vendors that provide service in Montgomery County, nor offer it as an endorsement of any of the companies listed.)
Organic Agriculture Recycling, LLC
Organic Waste Haulers
Apple Valley Waste