Fall is the best time of the year to start a compost because the leaves are abundant. Leaves and brush are carbon and the grass clippings and compostable food items are nitrogen – to make compost work best, you need 2/3 carbon (brown material) and 1/3 nitrogen (green material).
Wondering why to compost instead of mulching it on the lawn or bagging it yard bags? Saving money is the most practical reason. Composting leaves, twigs, grass and apple cores creates a rich soil-like material that can be spread on gardens, bushes, trees and flowers. No need to purchase fertilizers and pay less for watering!
Another reason is purely environmental. Putting banana peels, orange rinds, potato peelings in the trash can or garbage disposal requires energy for hauling the material and treating the material. Wastewater treatment plants use huge amounts of energy and the solids are often taken to landfills, so using the garbage disposal costs the environment more than meets the eye!
Will County is offering schools worm bins to teach children about food composting using worms in the classroom. Since food items make up nearly ten percent of the household waste and much of it is compostable, there is great value in teaching kids how nature handles these items. The resulting material (worm poop) is an incredibly powerful fertilizer. Another bonus: The worms reproduce offering opportunities to create additional worm bins to eventually handle an entire grade’s lunch leftovers!
Enjoy the season, and don’t despair if you have a yard full of leaves; be glad for the trees and the great composting opportunities they offer!