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Spring 2005 Compost Givebacks on Staten Island

May 23,2005 | Vito A. Turso / Taryn Duckett (646) 885-5020

Press Release # 05-26, FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Sanitation Commissioner John J. Doherty announced today that the Department of Sanitation - in conjunction with Compost Project staff at the Staten Island Botanical Garden - is giving away free, high-quality compost to New York City residents and community groups on Saturday and Sunday, June 4th and 5th, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Fresh Kills Composting Facility on Staten Island.

At the compost giveback event, discounted compost bins made of recycled plastic will be also sold so city residents and community groups can make their own compost.

The compost comes from the Sanitation's leaf and Christmas tree composting operations that were conducted last fall and winter. Finished compost can be mixed into flower and vegetable beds, blended with potting soil to revitalize indoor plants, or spread on lawns as a fertilizer.

NYC residents and community groups (no commercial landscapers or other businesses allowed) will be able to take away an unlimited amount of free compost (while supplies last). Compost and compost bins will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

"The Department is extremely pleased to participate in the compost giveback program. Providing a means for residents to reuse the leaves and Christmas trees they once placed curbside, demonstrates why participating in special collection programs is essential. Compost is the most natural fertilizer and is an excellent soil enrichment that is distributed to parks, community gardens, and New York residents to ensure the safe and healthy growth of plants and grass," said Commissioner Doherty.

Only NYC residents and community groups (in NYS registered vehicles) can remove compost or purchase discounted compost bins. Residents are encouraged to bring strong containers and a shovel to collect their compost. Doubled garbage bags, sand bags, or pails are ideal for transporting compost.

Nonprofit and community organizations can pick up compost in trucks or vans starting at 8:30 a.m. A small front end loader will be available for loading trucks. To ensure that the compost is going to nonprofit or community gardens, organizations must present proper identification (such as a letter requesting the compost on the letterhead of their organization). Nonprofit organizations that intend to rent a commercial vehicle to pick up compost will have to make arrangements in advance by contacting the Compost Project staff at the Staten Island Botanical Garden.

The Fresh Kills Composting Facility is located at the West Shore Expressway, Route 440, Exit 7, Victory Blvd., proceed through traffic light on the Service Road past a Dunkin Donuts/gas station and car dealership to the Fresh Kills Landfill entrance.

For more information on this event, contact the Compost Project at the Staten Island Botanical Garden at 1 (718) 362-1010 or visit Sanitation's website at