Northwest NEWS

September 2, 2002

Home & Garden

Big savings on compost during month of September

This fall, prepare your plant beds for the winter with compost and they will awake happy and healthy in the spring.
   Fall is a great time to build healthy soil with compost, and take advantage of some of the best prices on compost all year.
   Throughout the entire month of September, participating King County retailers will offer compost at a discount valued at 25 percent.
   The savings are made possible through a partnership between King County, the Saving Water Partnership, which includes Seattle Public Utilities and 25 local, cities, utilities and water districts, as well as (number) participating retailers.
   "Using compost is one of the easiest ways to improve the quality of your soil. Many people are already using compost as a soil amendment with new plantings, but we also want people to know that it makes an excellent mulch," said Liz Fikejs, conservation program manager with Seattle Public Utilities.
   "Compost helps to cut down on waste, lessens the need for summertime watering and reduces the need for chemical fertilizers and pesticides all of these help us have cleaner water and a healthier habitat for fish and wildlife," said Kris Beatty, project manager with King County.
   Using compost to build healthier soil is simple. All you have to do is:
   Spread it as a mulch! Apply one to three inches of compost to the soil surface (or two to four inches of fall leaves, wood chips and bark) as mulch. It will smother winter weeds, feed the soil, reduce both wintertime erosion and the need for watering next summer.
   Mix it in! Mix one to three inches compost into new plant beds or when replanting lawns.
   Your plants will be healthier and need less water and fertilizer.
   Ask for it! If you have a gardener or landscaper ask them to use compost, so you can enjoy its benefits.
   To find participating retailers or learn more about compost and soil health visit www.savingwater.org or call the Natural Lawn and Garden Hotline at (206) 633-0224.