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Composting Education

What is compost?

Compost consists of organic materials derived from plants and some animal material that has been decomposed largely through aerobic  decomposition (with oxygen). The process of composting is simple and is practiced by individuals in their homes, farmers on their land, and by industries and cities through contracts with composting businesses.

Compost is rich in nutrients. It is used in gardens, landscaping, horticulture, and agriculture. The compost itself is beneficial for the land in many ways, including as a soil conditioner, a fertilizer to add vital humus or humic acids, and as a natural pesticide for soil. In ecosystems, compost is useful for erosion control, land and stream reclamation and wetland construction.

 

Backyard Composting Program

In an effort to provide Cuyahoga County residents with how-to-compost instructions and affordable compost bins, the Solid Waste District has introduced the Compost Seminar & Bin Sale program.  After attending a 60-minute seminar about backyard composting, you will have the opportunity to purchase a bin for your home.

The District is offering two compost bins and a kitchen collection container for sale. Check or cash sales only. All sales are final. 

  • Wishing Well Composter - $50.00
  • Ultimate Dirt Machine Digester - $50.00
  • Sure-Close Compost Pail - $5.00 
  • Yard Butler Compost Aeration Tool - $20.00

To help you decide, please refer to the compost bin reference guide.  For more information about the Compost Seminar & Bin Sale program, call (216) 443-3731 or krocco@cuyahogacounty.us.

     
Wishing Well Composter
135 gallons
Ultimate Dirt Machine Digester
80 gallons
Sure-Close Compost Pail
11" W x 8-1/2" D x 9-1/5" H
1.9-gallon capacity
     
 Yard Bulter Aeration Tool    


2015 Compost Seminars & Bin Sales

April 22, 2015
Moreland Hills
7:00 p.m.
Village Community Building,4350 SOM Center Road
Register
June 2, 2015
Cleveland
6:30 p.m.
Collinwood Recreation Center 16300 Lakeshore Boulevard
Register

April 28, 2015
South Euclid
6:30 p.m.
South Euclid Community Center, 1370 Victory Drive
Register
June 9, 2015
Cleveland
6:30 p.m.
Gunning Recreation Center, 16700 Puritas Avenue
Register

May 5, 2015
Strongsville
6:30 p.m.
Ehrnfelt Recreation Center, 18100 Royalton Road
Register
June 23, 2015
Highland Heights (combination compost and rain barrel)
6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Highland Heights Community Center, 5827 Highland Road
Register at (216) 524-6580 ext. 16 or cposius@cuyahogaswcd.org

May 13, 2015

Shaker Heights
6:30 p.m.
STJ Community Building, 3450 Lee Road
Register
September 23, 2015
Lakewood
7:00 p.m.
Women’s Pavilion, 14532 Lake Avenue
Register

May 20, 2015

Brecksville
6:30 p.m.
Brecksville Community Center, One Community Drive
Register
October 8, 2015
Cuyahoga Heights 
6:30 p.m.
Cleveland Metroparks CanalWay Center, 4524 East 49th Street
Register with Cleveland Metroparks

May 26, 2015
North Olmsted
7:00 p.m.
Springvale Ballroom, 5871 Canterbury Road
Register
October 27, 2015
Parma Heights
7:00 p.m.
Cassidy Theater, 6200 Pearl Road
Register

 

If you experience problems with the online registration process, call Kathleen at (216) 443-3731.

Just Want to Buy a Compost Bin?

Bins are available for purchase at the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste Management District, 4750 East 131 Street in Garfield Heights (map).  Hours of operation are M-F 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Check or cash sales only. All sales are final.  Driving directions.

Kathleen Rocco presents at the Compost Seminar & Bin Sale on August 3, 2010 at Unity Spritual Center in Westlake.

Media Coverage on Backyard Composting 

Comments 

  • I definitely benefitted from the workshop. Although I have composted for years, the information from the workshop changed my procedures and the results have been wonderful. -Robin, Cleveland Heights

  • I am so glad that I started composting my kitchen waste!!  What a great way to amend this clay soil.  Your seminar made it so easy to understand the process.  And I know you would approve of the way we have repurposed our trash cans as they now hold our potato crop.  - Ginny Haessly, Bay Village 
  • Speaking to a few residents I learned that they found the seminar very helpful and were speaking highly of the session plus the information you had provided. - Deepa, Buckeye Development Corporation

  • Thank you for conducting the Compost Seminar. I heard a lot of positive feedback! Great job!  - Jennifer Milbrandt, City of Strongsville 

Composting Guidance Documents 

The Solid Waste District has put together the following documents to help you through the composting process:

Backyard Composting
Make your own soil-enriching compost by building and maintaining a backyard compost pile with leaves, grass and other organic materials.

Vermicomposting
Learn how you can use worms to make compost from your kitchen scraps by creating your own worm bin.

Backyard Food Digester
This fact sheet covers how and whys of installing a digester, especially for small backyards that would like to reduce food waste garbage.

Free Manure 

Hot out of the barn!  County residents can kick-start their compost pile with free horse manure from the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds Horse Barns in Berea.   Bring your own container or pick up truck and tools and load the manure yourself. 
Instructions:
1.  Go to the horse barn area of the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds.  The speed limit around the horse area is 5 MPH for the protection of people and animals.
2.  Please check with someone at the barns first, so the horse people are aware and can guide you to which large outside manure bin you can load your containers. 

A barn in Chagrin Falls is willing to give you their manure.  Contact Frank Torres at 216-780-5348. 

If you're closer to the Cleveland Mounted Unit barn, you can ask them too.  Again, you'll need to bring your own containers and tools.

Tell Us How You're Doing! 

Once a year, the Solid Waste District will survey interested residents of Cuyahoga County to see how they're doing with their composting efforts.  Your city of residence will get a recycling credit that is reported to the Ohio EPA.  If you are doing backyard composting and would like to add your name to the list of people who are surveyed, please send an e-mail to krocco@cuyahogacounty.us to be added to the list.  The survey will be sent to you via e-mail early in the year.   Any helpful hints on composting can also be posted to our website for educational purposes.  Thank you in advance.  

Yard Waste Facilities in Cuyahoga County

The District maintains a list of licensed compost facilities in Cuyahoga County.

Calendar of Events


Ongoing
Household Hazardous Waste Disposal Program
City Service Departments

April 1-30, 2015
Computer recycling events
City service departments

April 22, 2015
Happy Earth Day!

April 22, 2015
ForestCity computer recycling event
Tower City Center, Cleveland

April 22, 2015
Compost Seminar & Bin Sale
Moreland Hills

April 25, 2015
Party for the Planet
Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

April 25, 2015
BBB/Rad Air shredding events
Parma Heights and Solon

April 25, 2015
Habitat for Humanity ReStore Tool Drive
Rocky River

April 28, 2015
Compost Seminar & Bin Sale
South Euclid

May 2, 2015
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Patch Event
CanalWay Center

May 2, 2015
Habitat for Humanity ReStore Tool Drive
Shaker Heights

May 9, 2015
Habitat for Humanity ReStore Tool Drive
Brecksville

May 16, 2015
Habitat for Humanity ReStore Tool Drive
Strongsville


  

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