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Nitty Gritty

By Traci Hukill

There are plenty of good reasons to compost: Love of gardening or love of a certain gardener, guilt, stinky garbage cans, a desire to make the world a better place, or a fascination with worms.

That's right--worms. Worm composting is the perfect solution to the apartment dweller's food-scrap disposal problems. All that's needed is a covered bin about the size of a laundry basket with small holes for ventilation and drainage, a pound of red worms and two piles of damp, shredded newspaper (one on the bottom for bedding; one on the top to cover food scraps so they won't attract flies). The worms plow through the food, eating and "casting" all the day long, at the rate of about a pound a week. The soil resulting from the worms' nonstop bingeing is incredibly rich, wonderful stuff.

Master composting classes are organized by the city of San Jose (408.277.2989). For county classes, call the Rotline at 408.299.4147. Both the city and the county can offer bins at a discounted rate and advice about where to buy worms (they cost about $20 per pound). The San Jose composting resources website is recycleplus.org/resources.htm. The county's website is www.reducewaste.org.

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Streamlined Living: Pare down and live simply.
    Dispose of the Obsolete
    Battery Blues
    Toss It Out

Put Up Yer Dukes: Don't get mad, get even.

Cruising: Transit made simple.

Soul Relief: Free your inner self.

Get in on the Gold Rush: Grab a fistful of cash and join the party.

Domestic Bliss: Make your house into a home.

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From the March 16-22, 2000 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2000 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

For more information about the San Jose/Silicon Valley area, visit sanjose.com.




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