Hell’s Kitchen Composting News


Compost pail

Food-scrap Composting at the Clinton Community Garden

Food-scrap composting at the garden is done as a small, cooperatively run project. The compost we make is used in our garden and has been contributed to other nearby gardens too, including the garden beds at Hell’s Kitchen Playground, around the corner.

Making compost.

Red wriggler at work making compost.

What we compost:

  • fruit & veggie scraps
  • egg shells
  • loose tea and tea bags
  • coffee grounds and paper filters
  • nut shells


What we don’t compost:

  • dairy products
  • meat and bones
  • animal litter
  • bread, cooked and uncooked grains, baked goods
  • liquified, slimy organic matter
  • compostable bags—they don’t work in our system

This helps too:

To help us make good compost, please chop up your scraps at home.

Carry in. Carry out. Please take your plastic bags and containers with you and reuse or recycle them.

How to keep your food scraps from smelling rotten:

Freeze them. If you do this, don’t worry about defrosting them before taking them to the garden. Defrosted scraps tend to get pretty gooey very quickly, so it’s actually easier for us to deal with them in their more solid form.

Keep them in a container with air holes in the lid. You can make your own out of a yogurt container or milk carton or purchase one of many kitchen compost containers on the market nowadays. Completely sealed containers will cause the scraps to break down into into a rather stinky, syrupy mess that does not make a good addition to the compost pile.

Layer inside your compost container. Use scraps of newspaper, dried coffee grounds and loose tea in between layers of wet veggie scraps. A layer of shredded paper on top does wonders and is a good way of recycling too.

Compost containers

Compost containers: Makeshift to more polished



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