Advertisement
HomeCollectionsCompost Pile
IN THE NEWS

Compost Pile

FIND MORE STORIES ABOUT:
FEATURED ARTICLES
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali, For The Baltimore Sun | August 27, 2014
My new compost pile is attracting swarms of wasps. How do I handle this? Compost piles need many insect species on their decomposition team, but wasps don't make the cut. Late in summer, wasps crave sugars - making a nuisance of themselves at picnics and crawling into soda cans. However, in spring and summer they are beneficial predators who capture pest insects to feed to their offspring. So, their feasting on the sugars in kitchen scraps of your compost pile is a temporary situation.
ARTICLES BY DATE
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali, For The Baltimore Sun | August 27, 2014
My new compost pile is attracting swarms of wasps. How do I handle this? Compost piles need many insect species on their decomposition team, but wasps don't make the cut. Late in summer, wasps crave sugars - making a nuisance of themselves at picnics and crawling into soda cans. However, in spring and summer they are beneficial predators who capture pest insects to feed to their offspring. So, their feasting on the sugars in kitchen scraps of your compost pile is a temporary situation.
Advertisement
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali and Jon Traunfeld and Ellen Nibali and Jon Traunfeld,Special to the Sun | August 16, 2008
My compost pile smells. It never did before. I've been adding table scraps (no meat or dairy products), plus grass and weeds. Unpleasant odor can be caused by too much nitrogen (green/fresh plant material) or too much water and not enough air. Since all your materials are "green," balance them with "brown" materials, which are high in carbon. Such items include dead dried leaves, sawdust and straw. You can use shredded newspaper, too, but go lightly. If you've been watering the pile, cut back on that.
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali, For The Baltimore Sun | February 19, 2014
I'm feeling a little guilty about starting a compost pile for my kitchen scraps. Don't landfills need organic "trash" sources to counterbalance the inorganic trash? Compost guilt-free. Organic matter in landfills decomposes in an anaerobic (oxygen-poor) situation, which causes it to release methane — a greenhouse gas. Your own compost pile will not. It will enrich your soil and plants and feed a natural web of life without any of the cost — monetary and environmental — of buying a manufactured soil amendment.
FEATURES
By JON TRAUNFELD AND ELLEN NIBALI and JON TRAUNFELD AND ELLEN NIBALI,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | November 26, 2005
Is it a bad idea to cut back perennials while the leaves are green? Are the plants still benefiting this late in the year? I want to use the green leaves on my compost pile as "greens." If I wait until the leaves turn brown and compost them, do they still provide nitrogen to the compost pile? This late in the season, you can cut back your perennials for use in your compost pile. If you wait until the foliage browns, they will not provide the nitrogen or "green" source that you desire for your compost pile.
NEWS
By Jackie Powder and Jackie Powder,Sun Staff Writer | September 16, 1994
Mount Airy residents must find another place to dispose of their yard waste.State natural resources officials say that the compost pile in Prospect Park has to go, if the town wants state money to build more recreation facilities at the park.Deidra Ritchie, an assistant regional administrator with the state's open space program, notified Mount Airy last week that the compost pile must be removed for the town to receive $56,000. Plans call for the construction of street hockey, volleyball and basketball courts; paving of walkways and an access road; and additions to playground equipment.
NEWS
November 14, 1999
Q. We're newlyweds with a composting conflict. I like to throw everything on the compost heap as is, and he insists on buying an expensive shredder to chop it all up beforehand. And then he wants to spend a whole day carefully layering soil, grass clippings, leaves, etc. Please help me straighten him out.A. You're going to have to compromise to make this compost pile work. He's right about shredding materials before they go in (although you don't need an expensive shredder). Chopping things into small pieces will hasten decomposition.
NEWS
By Jackie Powder and Jackie Powder,Staff Writer | October 1, 1993
It was such an environmentally correct thing to do.Two years ago, Mount Airy's recycling committee started a compost pile in Prospect Park for town residents to dispose of yard waste. The idea was to reduce the amount of it that ended up in the landfill.As an added benefit, Carroll and Frederick counties agreed to grind the compost pile into mulch every month. The mulch was made available to Mount Airy residents at no cost.The arrangement worked well for a while, but in the past few months the compost pile has become a massive, smelly eyesore.
NEWS
By Kate Pipkin and Kate Pipkin,Contributing writer | September 15, 1991
We've all heard of recycling paper and glass, but what about our other garbage? Can that be recycled, too?It certainly can. It's called composting, and it's a great way to cut down on garbage, create some superb fertilizer, and even help save the earth.If you've ever thought of making compost, autumn is the perfect time for it and come spring you'll have some wonderfully rich and nutrient-filled topsoil.There are many ways of making compost. All you need is a little space in the backyard and some garbage.
FEATURES
October 6, 1996
My girlfriend in North Carolina was telling me about becoming a master gardener. Is there a program in Maryland? How can I find out more?The University of Maryland conducts a master gardener program at five sites in central Maryland. Participants receive 40 hours of training in environmental horticulture and agree to return at least 40 hours as volunteer public educators. Examples of service include giving talks in schools or to garden clubs, maintaining composting sites and conducting plant clinics.
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali, For The Baltimore Sun | December 19, 2013
Since I can't use fertilizer as a de-icer now that Maryland has a new lawn fertilizer law, what should I use instead that won't damage my plants? I'm on a fixed income. We've never recommended fertilizer as de-icer. Commercial de-icers can cause some problems, though. See our de-icer chart at http://ter.ps/MeltIceSafe to compare them. Sand and kitty litter are possible substitutes. Also, if you have only a small area to keep clear of ice, you can drape heavy plastic or another waterproof material over the area and lift it after the ice event.
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali, For The Baltimore Sun | March 14, 2013
I want to start a compost pile, but I'm worried that kitchen scraps will attract animals from the woods nearby. Any thoughts? Usually kitchen scraps are a small portion of a pile's ingredients. Most kitchen scraps are small pieces, damaged or bruised. They begin decomposing while still in the pail. Kitchen compost pails made with lids that have a filter are very effective is eliminating odor. By the time you dump the pail, scraps are usually beyond being palatable to animals. Throw other organic matter on top. You can also bury the scraps in garden soil.
NEWS
By Ellen Nibali, For The Baltimore Sun | December 5, 2012
Should I avoid putting seed heads from flowers or weeds into my compost pile, or will heat from the composting process bake the seeds? I don't want to throw in grass clippings if weed seeds will germinate when the compost is distributed later. Also, do compost bins continue to work in the winter despite short days and cooler temps? "Hot" composting kills many weeds seeds but cannot be relied upon to kill all. If you have really troublesome weeds, don't put those in your compost pile.
EXPLORE
Kathy Hudson | September 28, 2011
Tuesday we were in an office where a dusty cutting of a straggly plant sat in a vase on a windowsill. Fortunately, the shade was down, so sunlight did not show just how dusty the vase was, how little water was in the vase or how brown the edges of the leaves were.   I have been guilty of this pathetic-cutting-in-the-window syndrome.  My mother loved having a philodendron cutting in a pewter vase on the table by her chair. After she died, I brought the philodendron home. I kept water in the vase.
NEWS
By Liz F. Kay, The Baltimore Sun | December 7, 2010
A contractor for Baltimore's department of recreation and parks is working to smother a smoldering compost pile at a facility just south of Cold Spring Lane, according to a spokeswoman. The contractor was adding more dirt to reduce the flow of oxygen to the pile at Camp Small, she said. The facility is west of Interstate 83 and the smoke was visible to morning commuters. Compost piles heat as the organic materials decay, said the spokeswoman, Gwendolyn Chambers. Occasionally, the pile may grow warm enough to smolder if there's enough oxygen, she said.
FEATURES
By Ellen Nibali and Special to The Baltimore Sun | May 20, 2010
Question: A peach tree is coming up in our compost pile. Can we make apple and cherry trees this way, too? We want to start an orchard. Answer: Some gardeners have luck growing a good peach tree from a peach pit. But in general, Johnny Appleseed notwithstanding, starting fruit trees from seed presents a big problem — you usually end up with an inferior plant after waiting years for it to bear fruit. Fruit trees started from seed are not clones of the "mother tree."
NEWS
By Dennis Bishop and Dennis Bishop,Special to the Sun | November 3, 2002
I would like to plant a witch hazel in my yard. Can you tell me the difference between the native plant and the Asian variety? Is one more suited to our area than the other? Actually, there are two species from Asia (Hamamelis mollis and Hamamelis japonica), and there is also a group of plants that are hybrids of these two species. The hybrids are some of the most popular in the nursery industry. There are two native species. Hamamelis virginiana is the witch hazel that is native to Maryland.
ENTERTAINMENT
By SUSAN REIMER | August 20, 2009
They call it "gardener's gold," and soon enough this gold will be raining down on gardeners from the skies above: autumn leaves. You can curse these leaves, or you can compost them. If you are not composting yard waste and kitchen scraps, now is the time to get started - just in time to take advantage of Mother Nature's seasonal gift. Mike Ather lectures on composting and other soil issues for Gardener's Supply Co. in Vermont. I asked him to answer some basic questions for the beginning composter.
FEATURES
By Laura Vozzella and Laura Vozzella,laura.vozzella@baltsun.com | June 24, 2009
Garlic scapes, the scrapple of vegetables, have gone gourmet. Scapes are the flowering, curly, central stalk of the garlic plant, and growers snip them off around this time of year so the plant puts energy into the bulb instead of the bud. After that, scapes used to land in the compost pile - or perhaps on the plate of an especially frugal farmer, the sort who came up with scrapple because he didn't want to let perfectly good hog offal go to waste....
Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.