Green Shoots Blog
Cali Bamboo was founded on the principle of protecting the future of our planet, so keeping it green in all aspects of our business is important to us. Not only do we sell a variety of eco-friendly materials and give back to local environmental organizations, but we also hold ourselves to this principle in our day-to-day activities. We use hand dryers instead of paper towels in the bathrooms, actively recycle, use washable kitchenware instead of paper and plastic, and much more. Recently, the city of San Diego launched a compost voucher program to give local homeowners and businesses discounts for composting and going green, so we decided to take the city up on this offer and launch our own Cali Bamboo composting program!
With the voucher, we purchased a large composting bin from our local Dixieline Lumber and Home Center for our backyard. We also set up a smaller, easily-accessible bin in our kitchen that we periodically empty into the backyard bin. Composting is really easy for us, and it can be easy and beneficial for you as well!
What is Composting?
Composting is the controlled, natural decomposition of kitchen scraps, yard waste, and other organic material into a nutrient-rich material that is great for gardens and soil. It’s an easy and convenient way to manage organic waste while reducing the amount of trash sent to landfills.
Our planet’s landfills are filling up fast, and the number one material sent to landfills is organic waste that could be composted. Food we throw away does not decompose naturally in the landfill. Instead, it breaks down without oxygen, releasing dangerous amounts of methane and other pollutants into the atmosphere, which is why landfills account for up to 20% of the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions! It’s simple — reducing waste is essential to keeping our planet clean and beautiful, and diverting even just a small percentage of trash sent to landfills by composting can really make a big, lasting impact on our environment.
Additionally, adding compost to soil effectively helps to control run-off which can cause serious watershed contamination from pollution. In fact, the EPA has stated that run-off is the biggest threat to our nation’s water supply. Run-off can also increase erosion, leading to more frequent and more serious flooring, habitat and species loss, and infertile land. Composting is also an effective substitute for chemical fertilizers which can be harmful to our water supply.
Not only is composting one of the easiest ways to help protect the earth, it also allows you to easily convert waste into a useful product for your garden. Compost is a natural fertilizer that enriches soil by supplying nutrients essential to plant growth, helping your garden flourish with fresh fruits and veggies! Composting neutralizes the soil’s PH, making it hold nutrients more effectively to increase vegetation. Unlike chemical fertilizers, composting slowly releases nutrients so that they do not leach away. Composting also improves your soil structure, enhancing drainage, aeration, and nutrient retention. Because soil treated with compost holds moisture more effectively, you can water your plants and garden less frequently.
A great way to ward off plant disease and control pests is to spread a thin layer of compost over your soil surface. Composting suppresses soil-born diseases, and the excrement from the insects that break down the matter is a natural, organic pesticide that protects your garden from harm. Composting can also repair soils previously contaminated by chemical pesticides.
Make your garden a happy place for your plants by treating your soil with compost!
Ready to Get Started?
Composting is easy! Simply make or purchase a composting bin of any size for your backyard, and start the process with 50% green and 50% brown material. Mix and add water to your compost pile every 7-10 days, and it’ll be ready to go when it’s crumbly, dark brown, and has an earthy smell. The smaller the material, the easier it will break down.
-Coffee grounds and filters
-Fresh grass clippings
-Dry leaves and twigs
-Straw and hay
-Woodchips from untreated wood
-Paper napkins (shredded)
DO NOT COMPOST:
-Meat, fish, eggs
-Plastics, metals, & synthetic materials