Q: What is compost?

A: Compost is the sustainable, recycled, nutrient rich soil amendment product of decomposed organic waste.

Cedar Grove Compost is made from locally recycled garden prunings, food products, and vegetable trimmings and does not contain biosolids or steer manure.

By choosing Cedar Grove Compost, you support important composting programs in your community.

Q: What is compost made from?

A: Cedar Grove compost is made from locally recycled yard trimmings, food scraps and clean wood waste from residential curbside and commercial collection programs across the Puget Sound region.

Q:. What are the benefits of using compost?

A: Buying and using Cedar Grove compost completes a local recycling loop and supports a sustainable local economy.

- Compost helps the ground retain water for longer, reducing water usage
- Compost minimizes erosion
- Compost delivers essential nutrients over an extended period of time for optimal plant growth

Q: What happens to the pesticides, bacteria and contaminants that go into compost?

A: Cedar Grove compost is made from locally recycled yard trimmings, food scraps and clean wood waste from residential curbside and commercial collection programs across the Puget Sound region. Once it arrives at our facilities, we double-screen the waste to ensure the removal of any non-organic items.

At Cedar Grove, we use a state-of-the-art computer controlled system to ensure that the compost is heated to temperatures that will remove disease and pests. The naturally occurring microbes and heat generated during compost break down toxic chemicals into safe compounds.

Cedar Grove Compost has been sent to certified laboratories for years to guarantee that pesticides are undetectable in the finished compost product. Cedar Grove, in voluntary compliance with the US Composting Council Seal of Testing, tests all batches of compost prior to sale to ensure compliance with Washington State regulations.

Q: How much compost should I use?

A: Recommended compost application rate for various plantings are listed below. The higher rates are for sandy soils, and lower rates are for heavy clay.

- Lawns: 1 to 2 inches of compost mixed 8 inches deep into soil
- New Shrub and Tree beds: 2 to 4 inches of compost mixed 8 to 12 inches deep
- Established Shrub and Tree beds: Mulch with 2-3 inches of compost/bark mix every few years
- New Annual Gardens: 2 to 4 inches of compost mixed 8 to 10 inches deep
- Established Annual Gardens: 1 to 2 inches each year, mixed 2 to 6 inches deep

Q: Does accepting meat lead to hormones in the finished compost?

A: The naturally occurring microbes that make compost also break down steroids and hormones into simple, safe compounds; and the heat generated in the process kills pathogens like e-coli, salmonella. Cedar Grove Composting monitors the piles to make sure that temperatures are maintained at 150 F for at least 3 weeks in the composting process—well beyond regulatory requirements, and the finished compost is tested in accordance with state laws to demonstrate that disease causing pathogens are not present.

Q: Why can’t I plant directly into Compost or Booster Blend?

A: Compost and Booster blend are soil amendments. They are very nutrient rich and can burn new plantings and prevent proper growth.

Q: What is the difference between Compost and Topsoil?

A: Compost is a soil amendment, whereas Topsoil is meant to be the base soil.

Q: Can I bring my food waste to your facility?

A: Per our permits, food waste can only be accepted into our facilities by a commercial hauler.

Q: Why do I have to pay you to take my yard waste and then pay you again for compost?

A: There are costs associated with processing the yard waste and producing the compost.

Q: What is the difference between your 2 Way Topsoil and topsoil that I can get for free from a construction site?

A: Cedar Grove 2 Way Topsoil is a mixture of Cedar Grove Compost and sand. The compost is tested for weed seed vigor and heavy metals. Topsoil (or dirt) has not been tested.

Q: Is your compost safe for people and animals?

A: Cedar Grove products are generally safe for people and animals to be around. But compost is alive and active with microbial activity, so care should be taken to avoid ingestion by pets and small children.

Q: Is Cedar Grove STA-certified?

A: Yes! Cedar Grove compost is STA-certified. Click here to learn more about our STA certification.

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