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Dove A guide to home composting

A guide to home composting

Together, we can build a more sustainable future. That’s why we’ve partnered with Conservation International to create a handy guide to home composting. Read on to find out how to home compost.

We’re here to set the record straight and answer your home-composting questions. What can you compost at home? What does home compostable mean? And – most importantly – what not to compost.

Simply put, compost is decomposed organic matter used to enrich and fertilize soil for gardening and farming. It’s a process that transforms compostable items such as food scraps, paper and grass clippings, into soil-like material that can be added to your garden to help your plants grow and thrive. 

The key to successful home composting is a healthy mix of green and brown waste. Green waste includes food scraps, coffee grounds and grass clippings. These items add moisture and nutrients to your compost. Brown waste includes wipes, paper, eggshells, dried leaves and branches. These items help to control moisture and odor. 

There are three main methods of home composting: open-air composting, closed-bin composting and the tumbler composting method. Each method works just as well, and depends on the amount of space you have available. You can find more information in our downloadable resource, available below.

All three methods follow the same basic principles. So we’ve put together a simple home compost guide to help you be more sustainable at home.

  1. Find a dry and shady area for your compost bin or pile
  2. Mix brown materials (i.e. our wipes, cardboard, cotton, wood chips) with green materials (i.e. leaves, food waste, coffee grounds)
  3. Add water to ensure your compost stays moist, not wet
  4. Regularly turn compost to ensure aeration

For a more in depth look at each step, download our educational resource. 

If you’re interested in home composting, it’s important you know what can be composted and what materials aren’t suited for home composting. So, we’ve put together a handy list for you. 

Materials suitable for home composting include:

You may be wondering, are all wipes compostable? The answer is no, not all wipes. But Dove Moisturizing Hand Sanitizer Wipes are made with 100% plant-based fibers, so these compostable wipes break down when home composted. Remember, the wipes aren’t intended for industrial composting and the packaging isn’t compostable. You can return the empty wipes pouch to the store to be recycled and check local guidelines for recycling the canister.

Materials that are not suitable for home composting include:

  • Black walnut tree leaves or twigs
  • Coal or charcoal ash
  • Dairy products
  • Diseased or insect-ridden plants
  • Fats, grease, lard, or oils
  • Meat or fish bones and scraps
  • Pet and human waste
  • Yard trimmings treated with chemical pesticides

A few reasons these materials can’t be composted at home are that they might be harmful to plants, create odor problems, contain parasites or harmful bacteria and may attract pests. 

Now you’re all set – it’s time to start your own compost pile, bin or heap. For more information about home composting, download the resource below created in partnership with Conservation International.


Download our home composting guide

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