Compost Production

Quivira supports composting at all scales

At Quivira, we’re excited about compost production, and use of compost as a biological amendment for land restoration.

In rural communities, organic materials account for up to 60 percent of total waste produced (1) in the forms of manure from livestock operations, woody waste from brush removal or forest thinning, animal bedding, crop residues, yard wastes such as leaves and grass clippings, and kitchen scraps. Composting transforms all of these from nutrient and landfill problems into solutions that protect waterways, improve soil productivity through safe application to pastures and farm fields, and possibly provides an avenue of income generation. 

Compost and other organic amendments have been shown to be useful tools of active soil restoration, but more research is needed to understand when and where these amendments have the largest benefits for land restoration. We will thus continue on-ranch trials of compost amounts, season of application, sources, and deployment methods. We will also investigate the use of compost with erosion control structures to rapidly heal headcuts. Broadly, our research will focus on the benefits of compost in addressing and building resilience to drought and will support local and regional compost production for use in rural landscapes. We will also compile and share economic case studies of compost production and use to reduce hesitation for landowners considering a new management direction.

We are have been partners on a grant with Reunity Resources and Edgewood Soil Water Conservation District to build capacity for composting in Rural New Mexico, and we are beginning a new collaborative grant focused on Taos County in 2022! Videos of a field trip to Reunity Resources introducing compost, worm composting, and aerated static pile composting can be found here and of course the workbook is available to download for free on our Technical Guides page.  We have compiled a Total Cost Analysis snapshot of Polks Folly Farm food waste, swine production, and composting operation that can be found here. Supplies such as thermometers, straw bales, buckets, are available to lend or provide – please reach out! Funded by the Rural Utilities Program of USDA and the Stranahan Foundation.

Attend a compost workshop

Learn how to compost from the small- to medium- scale to transform waste into a valuable soil amendment! Instead of food and agricultural waste going to the dump, learn two methods (Static Aerated Pile Composting and Worm composting) to make compost to use in your farm or garden.

Check our events page for upcoming workshops.