Just like healthy kids require healthy food, healthy plants require healthy soil. After hauling 1.2 million pounds(!) of soil up to the roof for Brooklyn Grange’s construction, keeping that soil healthy and nutritious is a #1 priority. As plants slurp up water and nutrients from the soil through their roots, the soil needs to be replenished regularly with compost. Compost is nature’s finest fertilizer made from stuff we’d normally throw away– icky food scraps like watermelon rinds and eggshells. At least 14% of waste found in landfills is organic material– this means that 14% of our trash could be composted. Instead of sentencing that banana peel to landfill purgatory, we throw it in a compost pile, where it breaks down into rich soil for our veggies!
Organic farmers call compost “black gold” because it’s as black as night and as valuable as gold. It’s the final product in the natural process of decomposition, which occurs when “greens” (nitrogen-rich materials like food scraps and weeds) and “browns” (carbon-rich materials like sawdust and newspaper) meet. With the help of the “FBI” (Fungus, Bacteria, and Insects), the mixture heats up and breaks down, and that stinky mess of garbage becomes nutrient-rich compost. Think of it as a multi-vitamin for your veggie plants!