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10/06/2012

Composting In Small Yards

Most Orange County California lots are small. In Laguna Beach you might have lot square footage smaller than the average American home. We all want to be green and compost, recycle and conserve but these actions seem to require more space than the traditional buy and toss methods. This brief summary of  composting for a small yard can be adapted for other climates.

Materials needed:
I found:
some wire cage material (used chicken wire and even the mesh plastic fencing could be used for this purpose).
Vegetable ties - the type often used around lettuce
all the green cuttings of food stuffs, grass clippings, coffee grounds, yard cuttings

Place wire cage upright in a corner that is not terribly front and center.
You will see in my backyard cage I have used a tree trunk as the upright support and in the front it stands freely on more level ground.
The vegetable ties can be opened and closed and replaced as they fall apart.
Layer your waste and leave it alone
In summer warm months or if you water the cage the material shrinks very rapidly.
The cage is light and can be lifted to scoop the nice compost from the bottom


DO NOT use: rose clippings or plants that have major disease infestation, toss those to
save on later problems.
If you want to be really green, save rain water and pour through the cage, catching the runoff for
compost tea (used to spray plants as fertilizer and bug repellent).

Why would you do this in your garden?
Simple, free, saving landfills, making your soil improve, make flowers and vegetables grow cheaper, less water use, less fertilizer, repeat free, save money

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