Garbage Today, Dirt Tomorrow

The United States Environmental Protection Agency reports that together, food scraps and yard trimmings constitute 23% of the U.S. municipal solid waste stream, with some estimates as high as 30%. Now that’s a lot of garbage. Garbage, that is causing landfills to reach capacity creating the need for more landfills. Garbage, that costs the consumer more every day to have hauled away. Garbage that can be turned into a useful, economical product called compost.


It seems pretty ironic that so many of us pay someone to haul off our garbage and then turn around and pay someone else for the soil conditioners and fertilizers we need for our lawns and gardens. Maybe we should gather up this morning’s coffee grounds and the eggshells. We can add them to tonight’s potato and carrot peelings and yesterday’s newspaper. 

Yes, even the newspaper can be composted, along with cardboard boxes, if cut into small pieces, and brown paper grocery bags. We can pull a few weeds from the flower garden and add some dry leaves and we have started building a compost pile. It all adds up to less garbage to have hauled away and, in a few months, some rich, dark soils to help our gardens grow.

Additional Information

If the idea of composting appeals to you, but you think you would like more information on the how to’s and what not’s the Internet has a world of information, review these resources.