A program of Matter of Trust
an ecological public charity since 1998
Recology SF collects all of San Francisco’s food scraps, soiled paper, and plants. Any resident of San Francisco can order a green bin for curbside collection of their compost from the Recology website:
If you are not from or within the San Francisco area though, many cities and towns have waste collection schemes that you can sign up for. If not look at the “How can I get my city to start green bin / organic waste pick up?” question for more information.
For home composting in urban areas use a worm bin which has a small footprint, or if you have yard space to spare use at least 3 by 3 feet to start your own compost pile.
Research shows that grasses, in combination with compost, capture carbon out of the air and put it back into the soil.
Home gardeners can improve the quality and quantity of fruit and vegetables grown as well as getting their lawns looking great by applying compost.
Farmers can reduce their carbon footprint by using compost instead of cow manure (which accounts for a significant portion of CO2 emissions).
Everyone should use compost as well as sort their own green waste. In urban areas sorted green waste can be collected for composting by the city or in a home worm bin.
Gardeners should compost their garden beds once or twice per year. Farmers should compost their fields annually. Ranches should compost grasslands once every 15 years.
Compost is a way for the public to engage in a Global Warming solution. Everyone can beneficially effect climate change simply by sorting out their compostables from their waste and reducing landfill methane. Urban and rural soils are healthier and pull in more carbon from the air when a 1/4 inch of compost is applied and non tillage techniques are used.
As a general rule, compost your beds before each planting season. The number of planting seasons you have each calendar year is dependent on your geographic location.
If you live in cooler climates, such as the Northeast or Midwest United States, Canada, or the United Kingdom where there is one major growing season – apply compost once per year. If you live in the South or Southwest United States, where a warm climate offers year-round gardening, you need to add compost twice per year to accommodate two distinct growing seasons.