Nov 10 - From Food Scraps to Garden Soil

A new blend of compost has excited South Valley Organics in Gilroy, while making the compost easily available to those who want to use it. The end result includes an essential element in fertile soil: rock phosphate. The blend, called Four Course Compost, can be used at any level, from professional farmers to landscapers to the average gardener. Additionally, customers can easily get this compost from the Home Depot or Orchard Supply in Gilroy, making the process come full circle. Jen Penkethman of the Gilroy Dispatch reports.

Gilroy - From high on a hill just off Pacheco Pass Highway in Gilroy, a new product, made from discarded food and organic waste of Gilroy's citizens, churns in a big tumbler. One man's dirt is another man's gold, and according to Robert Reed, growers will be clamoring for this new, phosphate-enhanced compost.

"The new blending process has growers very excited," said Reed, a spokesman for South Valley Organics, which operates just outside of Gilroy.

The blend includes rock phosphate, an essential element for fertile soil. Think of the little white rocks that come with your household potted plant - this is rock phosphate, but undigested, and unusable for plants in pebble form. South Valley Organics, with the help of Bob Shaffer, an agronomist (soil expert), have developed a new method which blends the phosphate into the soil so that plants can sip the nutrients directly through the root.

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