Image Source: BIG!NYC
Earlier in the year we reported on where you could drop your food scraps for composting. Most of that compost went to improving city property and community gardens and organizations. But unless you built your own bin, if you’ve wanted to get in on that composting action, you were out of luck. But not now. BIG!NYC points out that the Department of Sanitation will give you free bags of city compost and mulch as long as you use them to beautify public trees lining the street. Those oases of bark and dirt along the sidewalks easily suffer from rainwater runoff, uncurbed dogs, and sheer neglect. With a load of compost and mulch, a weekend afternoon, and a couple of friends, you can finally fix up that shabby patch of dirt outside your home — for free!
There are a couple of caveats: you have to pick up the mulch and compost yourself, so you’ll need a car and someone who can lift 40-pound bags. You also need to apply through the DSNY’s website, along with pictures of up to three trees you want to fix up (so no hauling this compost to your home garden). Once approved they’ll send you the info about your nearest pick-up location.
For more info on local composting, check out BIG!NYC and the DSNY Bureau of Waste Prevention, Reuse and Recycling. To see a list of where city compost is being put to use in Queens, check out their borough projects page.