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The Benefits of Urban Composting All Winter Long

by on December 7, 2011

UrbanFig: compost

You can compost everything from vegetable scraps to tea bags- even in winter!

Is it possible to enjoy the benefits of winter composting in an urban setting?

DID YOU KNOW? Estimates say that as high as 25% of landfills are filled with food waste that doesn’t break down appropriately in a traditional landfill. The anaerobic methods employed in our bloated landfills today don’t allow for the proper degradation of food waste.

There is no denying how beneficial compost is for garden plants but when you live in an urban environment, standard methods of composting just aren’t always practical. What if there were ways to bring that compost gold home even for city dwellers? In larger cities, community gardens can offer a great alternative to tossing our kitchen waste out with the trash, but with the average American wasting as much as 220 pounds of food every year it is important that more of us find more eco-friendly options.

You might think that winter gardening means that you can’t start composting but you couldn’t be more wrong. Now is the perfect time to get started and there’s plenty of time to get some great compost ready for planting a garden next spring!

The natural process of bokashi is an option that can work almost anywhere, including your kitchen. A bokashi container like this one has an airtight seal that will keep odors at bay while an inoculation medium works its magic to break down food scraps. An added benefit to composting in this way is that every 7-10 days you will have nutrient-rich compost tea that can be used to feed all of your plants indoors and out.

Conventional wisdom tells us that this tea is far too powerful to be used full strength, and though the schools of thought vary on the perfect ratio to use, we have had excellent results using a 1:10 ratio of compost tea to water and we know you will too. Bokashi composting is a great way to put your kitchen waste to good use and keep it out of the landfill.

Do you compost indoors? Have you tried bokashi? Let us know your experiences in the comments below and send Michael an email at michaelnolan@urbanfig.com if you have any questions!

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