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5 Things You Didn't Know You Could Compost

Compost pile

Do you ever find yourself throwing out small bits of food, wondering how to eliminate this waste? By composting food and other organic materials, you can live a more environmentally-friendly life and even create powerful mulch for your garden.

Some items are obviously compostable - things like organic matter from your garden, eggshells, and some types of food waste. But you may be surprised by a few items on our list today. Here are 5 things you didn’t know you could compost:

Pet Hair

Ever wonder what good your pet’s shedding can do? Pet hair is an easy compost material. Next time your furry friend needs a quality pet-down, empty the resulting hairs into your compost.

By allowing the hair to decompose into nutrients, you can take advantage of a pet ownership chore to replenish lawn or garden. Pet hair also decomposes quickly, making it an easy addition to or starter item for those looking to start composting.

Freezer-Burned Produce

Have you opened your fridge or freezer for a treat or meal, just to find your produce freezer-burned? Good news! While your grocery items are no longer edible, they’re the perfect additions to your compost bin.

After thawing, your fruits and vegetables will break-down like any other compost material. They probably won’t be as delicious to eat, but will be thankfully useful all the same. To quicken compost, be sure to add items in small pieces.

Bills & Homework

Bills giving you a headache? Homework giving your kids a headache? Most paper products are compostable, making compost your silver-lining to tedious obligations.

Save your old bills and fish your kid’s homework out of the trash. Instead, use the organic fibers to jump-start your own compost journey. Keep in mind that paper can be stacked and stored for years at a time - so it’s important to store it properly for compost purposes. Cut up the paper into smaller pieces and add it to more quickly-decomposing ingredients to jumpstart your compost bin.

White Glue + Paper

Most simple school glues are made from non-toxic ingredients. This protects your children and younger kids from accidental ingestion. If you have or work around kids, this is great news for your compost! Any dried up glue-bits or extra glue-projects, with paper included, are compost-friendly.

Halloween Pumpkins

It can be easy to forget about your Jack-O-Lantern the second it starts deteriorating into a mushy mess. Worse, by leaving your pumpkin out on your lawn or porch, it may attract unwelcome, hungry critters.

Before letting it get that far, add it to your compost pile! Pumpkins are related to squash and are often donated in large quantities to community gardens after Halloween. Better yet-decomposing pumpkins will smell better than just-as-compostable moldy cheese.

Is it Organic? Compost!

Starting and organizing compost can be intimidating at first. What can you use? What can’t you? And why? Thankfully, with a bit of extra thought and consideration, compostable items are usually easy to sort.

Before throwing your next item away, examine its ingredients. Are they organic? If so, it’s compostable. Yard waste and food scraps make up 20-30 percent of what we throw away. Ideally, both of these should be composted instead!

Looking for other simple ways to add sustainable practices to your life? 

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