How and Why to Compost

What is composting and why should I do it?

Watch this Composting Video to learn about how and why you should compost!

School Kids Talk Trash...And Composting!  See video here!  



Composting is nature’s way to recycle. It is the controlled, natural decomposition of organic matter.

Microorganisms and macroorganisms break down organic materials into compost, or humus, a nutrient-rich soil amendment that improves the health and efficiency of your garden ecosystem from the ground up... Read More...

Sign up for FREE composting workshops here! 

I Want My Discounted Compost Bin for My Yard

Compost Bin Voucher Program


Business Assistance Guide for Mandatory Organics Recycling 
San Diego County offers free assistance to businesses that want to develop programs to cut food waste, manage compostable materials and save money. Please contact April Andrews at (858) 694-2463 for more information on how the County can assist your business in organics recycling. 

GUIDES: Composting and Vermicomposting (composting with worms) 

Small to Mid-Scale Composting - Options and Regulations for: 

Permitting for Composting Facilities 

How to Permit a Green Materials Compost/Mulch Operation – A two page summary with recommendations to streamline permit requests

Organic Materials Processing Permit Guide – A visual summary of State and local regulations that may apply to facilities in unincorporated San Diego County

Regulatory Summary – Excerpts from regulations that may apply to facilities in unincorporated San Diego County


Animal Waste Management

VIDEO: Watch this Emmy Award winning Manure Composting Video with Sam the Cooking Guy on the importance and simplicity of manure composting.

Successful Manure Recycling Case Study - Costanzo Farm

Erosion Control

Compost modifies the physical soil properties, improving water-holding ability and resistance to compaction. For this reason, compost is more commonly being used as an erosion control material that enhances soil. Compost is made from readily available, inexpensive materials and is gaining ground as an accepted material for erosion control measures in construction projects and roadside landscaping in California whereby road and construction projects degrade and compact soil, causing breakdown of aggregates and loss of structure.

Learn more

Supplies, Workshops and Composting Assistance

School Composting Programs

The County offers free composting education and assistance with compost and worm bin set up and in some cases donation of bins. Assistance with composting is available on a first come first serve basis and for schools located in the unincorporated county.

Compost Demonstration Sites

Learn how to produce a valuable soil amendment from your food scraps and yard waste. Composting workshops are offered in many unincorporated communities and compost demonstration sites

Landscaper Best Practices

Design and maintain commercial and residential landscapes?
Reduce the amount of yard waste you dispose

Yard Waste


No-Cost Chipping Service for Fuel (Vegetation) Reduction