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What you can and cannot compost

If you're new to composting you may reason that anything that decomposes is suitable for the compost, but there are in fact a number of things that you shouldn't add to your scrap pile — particularly if your scraps will end up in a compost pile in a city or residential area. Things should never be composted:

Cooking oil or greasy foods: This stuff smells like food to animals and insects and can effect the moisture of the compost.

Meat and dairy products: More pest magnets you don't want to introduce into a compost pile.

Diseased plants: You absolutely do not want to transfer fungi or bacteria to the food or plants that end up growing in the compost. It is a better idea to just trash them.

Weeds: Plants such as dandelions and ivy will probably find a loving home in the compost pile rather than decompose.

Heavily coated or printed paper: Recycle them instead. The chemicals used in printing can compromise the compost.

Sawdust: If you're considering this, you need to make sure that the wood is all-natural and not treated in any way.

Feces and personal hygiene products: Doing this will create a health risk and potentially spread disease.

COMPOSTABLE ITEMS: Acceptable materials include fruit and vegetable scraps, non-greasy food scraps (rice, pasta, bread, cereal etc.), coffee grounds and filters, tea bags, egg and nut shells, pits, cut or dried flowers, houseplants and potting soil.

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