Category Archives: Uncategorized

Is newspaper safe to compost?




It is spring and your world is awash with compostable materials from the kitchen and yard, but you’ve got no leaves to act as a carbon-rich material, so now what? Newspaper is the typical answer, but is it safe?






Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

How many leaves do I need?




People often ask how many leaves they should save for their compost pile. It’s the right question to ask, because when making compost if you strike the correct balance of leaves and nitrogen-rich food scraps, you’ll get rich, light, sweet-smelling compost. Get … Continue reading






Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Breaking the rules and smelling the results




I know the rules of what should and should not go into compost. I’ve written about it. I’ve spoken with hundreds of people about the rules in classes. Still, I broke the rules, and now I’m paying the price.






Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Garbage smells, compost doesn’t




Note: A shorter, slightly different, version of this appeared in the Arlington Advocate. Concerns about smelly compost usually come from people who, understandably, don’t understand the difference between a compost pile and a pile of garbage. So what are the differences … Continue reading






Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Starting a compost in winter




This has been a very cold, very snowy (snowiest on record, more falling as I type this, on March 28, 2015) winter. Even in these toughest conditions you can successfully start a compost and get it cooking. I took this … Continue reading






Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Winter Composting do’s, don’ts and what if it doesn’t?




Winter composting always seems to confuse people, which is understandable. So what is the secret to successful winter composting: Do the same things you do when composting the rest of the year, only faster.






Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Preparing for the Great Melt




If you live in Greater Boston*, you need to do this – now. Do this now, even if you’ve never had a flood before, because we’ve never had snow like this before. Do this now, even if you believe that … Continue reading






Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Got ice dams?




  A very brief and unadorned post about ice dams, which lots of people are contacting me about. This is a very brief primer on what you need to do now, even if the roofer gets all the ice off. After you’ve … Continue reading






Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Recycling pumpkin recycling




I’ve addressed pumpkin recycling in the past, but it is worth revisiting and updating with a new flyer you can use, below. The idea is this: In most municipalities, you’re not supposed to put pumpkins in the yard waste, so it … Continue reading






Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Compost: Stuff you need to start composting




It is the most basic of questions: What ‘stuff’ do I need to if I’m going to start composting? Not surprisingly, the answers are simple and inexpensive. You can compost with a gold-plated compost unit or some pallets tied together, and … Continue reading






Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment