• Plenty of Gardening Choices in May for Southern Calif. Gardeners - Wednesday, April 29, 2009 at
  • Walk into any nursery during May and you can be overwhelmed with the array of flowers, landscape plants, fruit trees and summer vegetables on display. Keep focused on the needs of your garden and don't be tempted to overbuy, says Agromin, an Oxnard-based manufacturer of premium soil products and one of the state's largest green materials recycling companies.

    Ideal Month for Planting Almost Any Flower: Plant your warm season annuals in May including begonia, chrysanthemum, geranium, marigold, petunia and verbena. While annuals come and go, perennials will bring backyard enjoyment for years to come. Perennials to plant now include African daisy, delphinium, fuchsia and lavender.

    Herb Planting: If you use fresh herbs when cooking, it makes good sense to plant your own herb garden. For the price of a few cut basil leaves from the store, you can plant a small basil plant that will produce dozens of leaves through November. Other herbs to plant are chives, cilantro, dill, fennel, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, tarragon and thyme.

    Naturally Reduce Pests: Plenty of brands of pesticides are sold at nurseries and retail stores, many even claiming to be all-natural. To be assured you are not putting harmful chemicals on your flowers, trees and garden, try truly natural options. For example, ladybugs can control infestations of aphids (small round bugs that feed in colonies on vegetable gardens, roses and other plants). If ladybugs are not plentiful in your yard, you can purchase them at most nurseries. To keep the ladybugs in your yard instead of migrating to your neighbors, release them after dark. They only fly in daylight.

    Rethink Your Lawn: Lawn care accounts for about 32 percent of outdoor water use. With water restrictions right around the corner, now is a good time to consider alternatives to a traditional lawn. Low maintenance, drought-tolerant ground cover such as lantana and Acacia redolens and ornamental grasses including fountain grass and deer grass can easily fill in a location where grass once grew. If you can't part with your entire lawn, consider reducing its size.

    For more gardening tips, go to www.agromin.com.

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  • Third Graders Travel to Agromin to Learn About Green Waste Recycling - Monday, April 27, 2009 at

  • Third graders from La Mariposa Elementary School in Camarillo traveled to Agromin's Oxnard green materials recycling and composting facility to learn how yard waste is made into compost.

    Dave Green, Agromin's vice-president of marketing, took more than 100 schoolchildren on tours over a three-day period. "Kids got to see firsthand how green waste goes from lawn clippings, tree trimmings and leaves to compost--ready to use in their backyard gardens," says Green.

    The facility processes more than 400,000 pounds of green waste every day. The material is cleaned of any non-green materials, chopped and laid out in composting rows. The material is turned and watered until microorganisms "compost" the materials into rich, organic soil. "The children were amazed how much green material goes through the facility every day and how much green waste we generate," says Julie Hughes a third grade teacher at La Mariposa Elementary School. "When they saw how much trash that people throw in their green recycling barrels they realized that their families must be more careful not to put plastics and other items in the barrel--only greens."

    When the children returned to school after the field trip, Master Gardeners' members spoke to the kids about how families can compost at home. "The kids saw composting on a massive scale at Agromin and then learned how they could do it themselves," says Hughes. "The day tied in nicely with Earth Week."

    Third grader Cameron Welty was particularly fascinated with the huge machines that grind the green material and the steam that comes from the composting piles. "He didn't care much for the smell that comes from the piles, but understood it's part of the process," says his mother Kristen Welty.

    Agromin receives more than 300,000 tons of green waste each year from throughout Southern California including Santa Barbara, Ventura, Los Angeles and Orange Counties. It is processed at five Agromin composting facilities. Agromin's compost is spread onto farmland, mixed into city, school and business landscapes and into consumers' backyards. It is one of the largest green recyclers in California. The U.S. Composting Council named it "Composter of the Year" and Agromin was recently named co-winner of the Ventura County Board of Supervisors' "Climate Change Action Award," sharing the honors with Limoneira Company in the Agricultural Industry category.

    "Through these field trips, we're hoping to teach kids early that green waste recycling is just another part of how we should live our lives," says Green. "And by reusing materials instead of putting them in landfills, we can help create a more sustainable planet."

    For more information about green materials recycling, go to www.agromin.com.

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  • Agromin to Give Away 300 Bags of Compost at Thousand Oaks Arbor/Earth Day Celebration - Wednesday, April 8, 2009 at
  • Agromin, an Oxnard-based manufacturer of premium soil products and the green materials recycler for Thousand Oaks and other Ventura County communities, is giving away 300 bags of compost during the City of Thousand Oaks/Conejo Recreation and Park District's 12th Annual Arbor/Earth Day celebration. The free event is Saturday, April 25 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Conejo Creek Park North (1379 East Janss Road behind the Thousand Oaks library). Agromin is an official sponsor.

    "Compost is the most natural material you can use to refresh your soil and prepare it for spring planting," says Bill Camarillo, Agromin CEO. "The compost at the Thousand Oaks Arbor Day event is unique because it's made from locally-collected lawn clippings, leaves and wood."

    Agromin processes more than 300,000 tons of green waste each year. The green material is collected at curbside in the Conejo Valley and throughout Ventura County and is then chopped, cleaned and naturally composted before becoming soil products.

    "More than 40 percent of all waste generated in California is green waste," says Camarillo. "From an environmental standpoint, it's important that we keep these materials out of landfills. One of the best ways we can do this is to use a natural process and return it to the land in the form of compost--on farms and orchards, in business landscapes and in our own backyards."

    Agromin, which was recently named "Composter of the Year" by the U.S. Composting Council, will have a booth at the event and Agromin employees will be on hand to answer questions about soil types, mulch and compost. For more information on green material recycling, visit www.agromin.com.

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  • Agromin To Give Away 5 Tons of Compost At Santa Clarita Earth Day Festival - Monday, April 6, 2009 at
  • Five tons of Agromin compost will be given away to Santa Clarita residents during the Saturday, April 18 Earth Day Festival and 20th Annual Arbor Day Celebration at Central Park (27150 Bouquet Canyon Rd.).

    Agromin is the green materials recycler for Canyon Country, Castaic, Newhall, Saugus, Santa Clarita, Stevenson Ranch and Valencia. The green materials are collected from residents and businesses and delivered to Agromin's Newhall Ranch processing facility. The material is cleaned, chopped and naturally composted. Agromin's products are free of animal waste and sludge.

    "Residents who use the Earth Day compost in their gardens will notice a difference from other soil mixes," says Bill Camarillo, Agromin CEO. "Because of its natural organic make-up, the material is a deep, rich color, packed with nutrients. Your garden will love it and by using compost from recycled green material, you know you're doing your part to help the environment."

    Camarillo says residents can play another important role in the recycling process by putting lawn clippings, leaves and other plant material in residential green recycling containers each week. "This helps close the recycling loop," explains Camarillo. "Those green materials can then be turned into soil amendments that find their way back into your garden."

    Agromin is one of the state's largest green material recyclers and was recently named "Composter of the Year" by the U.S. Composting Council. It receives and processes more than 300,000 tons of wood and green materials each year. Agromin then uses a safe, organic and scientific system to formulate its more than 200 soil products.

    Festival hours are 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For information on green material recycling, visit www.agromin.com.

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