Compost available in city

Thursday, August 19, 2010 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

Boone County soil has a tendency to be rocky and full of clay. Regularly adding compost and mulch to yards and gardens can improve both the quality of the soil and the likelihood that what is growing in it will survive and thrive.

The City of Columbia offers several sites to drop off residential yard waste and debris and pick up compost and mulch for residential use.

The city’s compost facility is  at 5700 Peabody Lane. The city sells compost to the public from 1 to 5 p.m. on Thursdays and occasionally on Saturdays, dates for which are posted on the City of Columbia’s website. Compost costs $12 per cubic yard for 100 cubic yards or less. Reduced prices are available for those buying more than 100 cubic yards. A city crew is available with a tractor to help load compost into vehicles.

The city’s mulch facilities are at Capen Park Drive and Parkside Drive, off Creasy Springs Road. Columbians can drop off residential yard waste and pick up mulch daily at these sites during daylight hours. Residents may leave grass clippings, brush and limbs up to 10 feet long and 2 feet in diameter, and leaves.

Mulch from city sites is free. Columbia residents are welcome to pick up as much as they need; however, city crews are not available to help with loading.

A word to the wise: Unlike buying bagged mulch from home and garden stores and commercial landscape facilities, the mulch available at city sites is a composite of what is left by other residents, which might include invasive or noxious species, such as poison ivy. Be sure to consider appropriate places for this inexpensive resource, and wear gloves and long sleeves when picking it up.

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