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Composting Basics for Renters

Cleveland Renter Peeling a Cucumber Near a Compost PailAs a renter, you might not have examined composting your kitchen scraps. In the end, composting isn’t a choice unless you have a big garden. Right?

The truth is that even if you don’t have much space, there are still crucial grounds to compost your kitchen scraps. What’s more, it’s uncomplicated for renters to compost, even without a large yard or garden! Compost is great for all kinds of uses and can help you live a more environmentally-friendly lifestyle.

This guide states the basics of composting, as well as what it is, why people do it, and the steps you’ll need to take to get started.

What is composting?

In the most primary conditions, composting is the process of breaking down organic materials into a rich soil amendment. This “amendment” can then be used to reinforce the quality of your garden soil, help your plants grow, and even act as a natural fertilizer.

When you compost, you’re essentially imitating nature’s process of breaking down organic matter. By doing this, you’re creating a product that is good for the environment and extremely useful for lots of green, growing things!

Why compost?

There are many reasons to compost, but one of the most important is that it helps mitigate the amount of waste that goes into landfills. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, food waste and yard trimmings make up more than 20 percent of what is sent to landfills each year, and these materials can take years to break down.

Another big reason to compost is that it helps improve the quality of your garden soil. Compost enriches the soil with nutrients that plants need to grow, and it helps improve the soil’s structure, making it better able to retain water and resist pests and diseases.

What can be composted?

Almost any type of organic matter can be composted, including food scraps, coffee grounds, eggshells, yard trimmings, and even paper towels and cardboard. You can even compost pet hair and used kitty litter. (For a complete list of what can and cannot be composted, check out this helpful guide from the EPA.)

How do I start composting?

Many Cleveland renters don’t understand that they can compost their food waste at home. By composting, you can diminish your garbage yield and help the environment. Here are a few suggestions to get started:

  • If required, talk to your landlord or Cleveland property manager about receiving permission to compost on the properties.
  • If you live in an apartment or condo, there may already be a community compost bin that you can use. Check with your building management to find out.
  • If you have a small yard or patio, consider getting a small compost bin to keep your food waste in until you’re ready to dispose of it properly. You can find these bins at most hardware stores or online.
  • Start compiling your food waste in a container. You can use a kitchen garbage can, a plastic storage bin, or even a grocery bag.
  • When your container is full, take it to your compost bin and add it to the pile. Be sure to mix it in well so that it breaks down
  • Once your food waste has broken down, you can use it as fertilizer for your plants or donate it to a local community garden.

Composting is a great way to reduce your environmental impact, save stress on your garbage disposal, and save money on fertilizer and potting soil. By following these tips, you can get started composting today!


Are you looking for a new rental home – perhaps one with a bigger yard or garden? If so, view our listings online to find your next home.

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