updated: May 10, 2013, 3:36 PM
Source: Public Works Department
The Santa Barbara County Public Works Department supports alternatives to throwing food scraps and
yard waste into the landfill - one of the largest generators of methane gas. Sam Dickinson, Program
Specialist with the Department, explains, "Leftover food scraps and plant materials can be naturally
recycled in your own backyard into a nutrient-rich soil amendment. Compost is great for your garden
and diverts organics from landfills."
You can take part in the County's Backyard Composting Program to save money and reduce your
environmental impacts at the same time! The County offers composting bins at wholesale prices at the
South Coast Recycling and Transfer Station at 4430 Calle Real in Santa Barbara. The County also offers
free workshops to learn how to compost in your own backyard:
Santa Ynez Valley Workshop: Saturday, May 18th from 10:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Solvang Branch Library, 1745 Mission Drive, Solvang
Santa Barbara Workshop: Saturday, June 1st from 10:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
SBCC's Life Scape Garden, East Campus entrance, past the stadium, Santa Barbara
Santa Maria Workshop: Saturday, June 8th from 10:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Santa Maria Valley Sustainable Garden, 624 W. Foster Road, Orcutt
Santa Barbara County Public Works Department partners with the Cities of Solvang, Santa Barbara, and
Goleta to provide these fun workshops free of charge.
Using your green waste recycling bin is another great way to help complete the organics loop. Yard
waste materials like grass, leaves, flowers, and other plants that are discarded into this bin are collected
and chipped into a mulch product distributed locally to residents and farmers. Returning this mulch to
the soil completes the loop, with many positive impacts for any garden.
As Joey Costa, the County's Mulch Program Coordinator, describes, "The main benefit of mulching is
water conservation and nutrient input." Get free "load your own" mulch at the South Coast Recycling
and Transfer Station in Santa Barbara. For details contact Joey at 681-4981. Be sure to ask him about
low cost loading and delivery options, too.
For more information about the Backyard Composting or Mulch Program, call 882-3618 or visit the
County's recycling website, www.lessismore.org.
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