Less Waste, More Soil: A guide to composting

Project: Growing & Producing

Did you know that in Winnipeg 28 per cent of household waste is food? And when food ends up landfills, it creates an intense greenhouse gas called methane. So why not harness some of that energy and turn it into a productive resource that can be used to grow healthy foods ad beautiful flowers in your own garden?

With fall just around the corner, if you don’t already, now is a great time to start composting. Why? Because, surprisingly, the freezing and thawing brought on by the cold temperatures is great for jump starting compost production. In the spring, you’ll be greeted with some luscious and ready to use soil.

Winnipeg is known for being notoriously bad at dealing with food and organic waste. And we need to change that! While other cities are able to divert an average of 45% of their food waste, we are sitting 24%. But getting started is easier than you think. You can start turning things like egg shells, vegetable peels, fruit cores, and coffee grinds into soil…

  • First, get your hand on some useful resources! A quick search on Google or YouTube will bring up a ton of helpful tips to get you started and determine which composting system is best for your household. Or, better yet, go old school and check out your local library!
  • After you’ve decided what kind of system you’re going to put into action, get your hands on the right tools. Perhaps you’ll need lumber for building a three-bin system in your backyard or you’ll want to get some worms from a friend for vermicomposting.  Earth Machines are a great and easy to install option that you can usually pick up at any hardware store.  And a small container with a lid that fits neatly in your kitchen to throw your organics in daily is always a must, no matter what system you have!
  • And talk to an expert! The folks at Green Action Centre have lots resources and information to get you well on your composting way.  Or talk to a neighbour, friend, or family member who you know has been composting to gain insight and useful tips.  Soon enough, you’ll be the expert dishing out tips and tricks, along with stellar soil for your garden!

Photo Credit: The Green Action Centre

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