In a Nutshell

Compost is organic material that can be added to soil to help plants grow. Compost can be used to enrich flower and vegetable gardens, to improve the soil around trees and shrubs, and as a soil amendment. Composting is the process of making compost from yard waste, fruit and vegetable waste, etc. It's easy to compost - as the saying goes "compost happens"!

Practical Solution

The “How To”The “How To”

Standard Home Compost

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) has a comprehesive guide to composting at home here. The Missouri Coalition for the environment has a local guide for composting here. Before composting at home, be sure to check your local city or county ordinances for requirements or restrictions. For a quick glance of composting rules in the St. Louis area, check out this table for a list that includes many cities in the area.

St. Peters Earth Centre/Recycle City serves St. Peters residents and businesses for trash, recycling, and yard waste. Residents can drop off their cardboard, newspaper, and other products. For yard waste, they have the option of putting it in their brown curbside bin or dropping it off at the Earth Centre (learn more here). This facility processes organic material into mulch and compost. The Earth Centre is open to the public and free for St. Peters residents with a Resident Privilege Card.


Another home waste recycling technique is Vermicompost. Vermicompost uses red wiggler worms to break down decaying plants, fruits, and vegetable waste. Like composting, vermicomposting can be maintained in the backyard. Necessary items to make your own vermicompost pile include worms, organic waste, and a box. Start a vermicompost bin in an area where the interior temperature of the bin will remain between 59 and 77 degrees F, such as a garage, porch or deck, kitchen, basement, bathroom, closet, or apartment balcony. After a few months the matter will be fully turned and ready for your lawn and garden. 

Content updates to this page made possible by funding provided by the St. Louis-Jefferson Solid Waste Management District and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.