27 October 2006

Free Compost

If you live in Brooklyn, NY and have a garden, you should know about the City's compost giveaway. The first week of the event, Oct 23 through Oct 28, is almost over, but there is a second week to it - Oct 30 through Nov 4. The location is the Spring Creek Composting Site, near the intersection of Fountain Avenues and Flatlands Avenue, just a bit off the Belt Parkway's Erskine Street exit. Bring your own bags or buckets and load up as much as you can carry! The City also sells empty sacks, two for a dollar. On the way out, you can also pick up a packet of five free paper leaf bag. On November 11 and 25, the City will have leaf collections for composting. Since plastic doesn't decompose with the leaves but paper does, we are asked to put the leaves in paper bags, so those five free bags will come in handy. For more detailed info, visit http://www.nyc.gov/nycwasteless

I myself just went to the Compost Center yesterday. The location is easy to find and maybe because it was a weekday, the line to get inside was short. I went primarily for the free leaf bags, but I also loaded up one black trash bag of compost. The compost will be mostly used by my mother and the small garden we have in the backyard, as well as mother's many container gardens.

Gardening is not my thing. I once owned a free plot from a local Queens recycling group. I helped the group with administrative tasks so when they opened up a garden, I got a plot to raise something. I don't recall whether I actually planted anything there or not, but my plot never thickened, or at least nothing fruitful came out of it. The only thing I can grow or maintain are the indoor plant philodendrons. Four jobs or more than ten years ago, a then colleague, D.Y., just bought a house and found a pot of philodendrons in her backyard. It didn't belong there and wasn't doing well. She brought it into the office for me to take care of. I watered it regularly and eventually it survived. I snipped a piece and took the piece home and it thrived even more, climbing from one side of the window to the other. When I was downsized from that job, I took the pot with me, to almost every job afterward. At each job, I would cut a piece and give it away to anyone who wants one - cleaning ladies, manager-in-training, and colleagues. When I gave the pieces away, I even planted the new pieces in their own pots and soil. At my current job, my philo has three or four descendants elsewhere in the company.

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