Programs > Composting


As we redesign our garden to accommodate extra shade created by our new neighbor to the south, we are only using the plastic backyard bins.  Please be patient with us.  Now that we have moved all structures to the southern side we can finish constructing a much needed retaining wall and relocate the compost bins.  ETA – this summer – 2014!!  We will keep you updated.

During our open hours gardeners will be tweeting to @615_green using the phrase #openhours to let or neighbors know when someone is in the garden so you can compost.  Please join our twitter feed and be in on all the news!!

Local residents can recycle their kitchen scraps and organic waste at our composting site during our open hours. Gardeners combine manure and hay from local stables with the kitchen scraps to produce a high nutrient soil. Our composting program is supported by the NYC Sierra Club and Brooklyn GreenBridge.

We offer composting workshops that feature demonstrations, handouts and hands-on experience turning the compost piles and sifting finished compost. People will learn how to use the garden’s public compost drop-off site and how to use compost in re-potting houseplants. Attendees who are not members of 6/15 Green will have the opportunity to become composting members of the garden or learn when and how to drop off compost at the garden.

Below, you’ll find info about how to compost at 6/15 Green.

This information is available as a
brochure in PDF format.

Composting Membership

6/15 Green offers a composting membership for composters interested in having the freedom to drop off anytime as well as working with the garden and composting program. There is a $20 membership fee which helps pay for insurance, compost bin maintenance and development of composting outreach, demonstrations, and on-site visits. You must attend a monthly meeting prior to joining.  Last meting available to join for 2014 is June 25th.  See membership for more info and meeting sites.  Compost members are also welcome to take compost home throughout the year for their personal use, but please take only what you need and leave plenty for others.

Public Composting Drop-off Site

Local residents can recycle their kitchen scraps and organic waste at our composting site during the garden open hours. Public composting is a program designed to bring awareness to the surrounding neighborhoods about composting and its impact on our city.

In addition, we are open on Weekends in November between 11 am and 1 pm for leaf recycling.

Some Storage Ideas

Depending on your family size and eating habits, a shoe box size plastic container in your fridge keeps smell to a minimum. A bucket or large coffee can under the sink with newspaper, paper towels or finished compost in the bottom will cut down on smells by absorbing liquids. Composting a lemon a couple times a week will help keep the bucket smelling fresher. If you accumulate your compostables in the freezer, please bring it to the garden already thawed and dispose of the container.

The concept of composting is to return to the earth what we have harvested from her. If you think of it that way you’ll always know what to and what not to compost. Composting is the wonderful process that occurs naturally when the nitrogen in greens and the carbon in browns are mixed together and are transformed into rich, nourishing, soil-like substance.

How to Compost

1. Cover your “greens” with “browns” (wood shavings, hay, manure, shredded newspaper) available in the steel bin next to the compost bins. If brown material is not available use unfinished compost from second bin.

2. Mix together

3. Make some air holes

4. Top with a layer of browns

Please do not add water to the bin

Please chop up your waste before adding to the pile [small pieces compost faster].

What to Compost

Kitchen scraps, chopped up fruit & vegetables corn cobs, potato peels, fruit rinds and cores etc. [please no large hard, seeds like mango, avocado or coconut]; Coffee grounds, paper filters, and tea bags without staples; Cut flowers [before they seed] Garden weeds [except invasive weeds like mugwort, woody rose and the deadly yellow clinging vine a.k.a. strangle weed]; Grass clippings; Fresh leaves; Seaweed; Horse manure; bread & grains; Food soiled paper towels, napkins and paper plates, Cotton balls, Q-tips, Shredded newspaper [except no shiny paper, no color print supplements]; Wood ash from untreated wood [no charcoal ash]; Dried leaves, Packing peanuts [the ones that dissolve in water not Styrofoam]; animal fur, human hair, nail clippings, Dryer lint, hay and straw, eggshells, old potting soil, small branches cut into 2″ or smaller pieces

What NOT to Compost

No mugwort or wood; NO animal products; [chicken, bones, or fish, dairy, eggs, fats, oils or grease], NO plastic, plastic, bags, twist ties, rubber bands etc.; NO cat or dog waste; NO large fruit seeds like avocado, mango; NO thick wooden branches; thick stalks like sunflower, hollyhock; or prickly branches like roses. NO diseased plants; NO pesticide treated plants or grass. NO treated wood, sawdust or plywood, shavings.

If you would like more information about composting or 6/15 Green’s composting programs (such as becoming a composting member, on-site visits, or for free demonstrations for street fairs, groups or workshops).

© 6/15 Green, a 501(c)(3) organization