The Dos and Don’ts of Throwing Food Scraps in Your Garden

Are you tired of tossing your food scraps in the trash and contributing to overflowing landfills? Why not put those scraps to good use by composting them in your very own garden? But before you start throwing your banana peels and apple cores all over the place, it’s important to know what you should and shouldn’t be doing. So, how can you throw food scraps in the garden?

In this blog post, we will explore the dos and don’ts of throwing food scraps in your garden so that you can create a healthy ecosystem for both yourself and mother nature!

Can You Throw Food Scraps In The Garden?

You may be tempted to throw your food scraps in the garden, but you should know a few things before you do.

Food scraps can attract pests, so it’s important to be sure your garden is pest-free before adding any scraps. If you add food scraps to your garden, bury them deep enough so that pests can’t reach them.

You should also avoid throwing scraps containing dairy or meat, which can attract unwanted wildlife.

Finally, it’s important to remember that food scraps are not good fertilizers. They can provide some nutrients but don’t have the balance of nutrients that a garden needs. If you want to add more nutrients to your garden, you should look into composting instead.

Advantages Of Throwing Food Scraps in Your Garden

Advantages Of Throwing Food Scraps in Your Garden

Throwing food scraps in your garden has several benefits. It can help to fertilize the soil, add essential nutrients, and attract beneficial insects.

  • Fertilizing the Soil: Food scraps are a great way to add organic matter to the soil. This can help to improve drainage, aeration, and water retention.
  • Adding essential nutrients: Food scraps can also add essential nutrients to the soil, such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. These can help to promote plant growth and health.
  • Attracting Beneficial Insects: Throwing food scraps in your garden can also attract beneficial insects, such as ladybugs, bees, and butterflies. These insects can help pollinate plants and control pests.

Overall, throwing food scraps in your garden can be a great way to improve the health of your plants and reduce your waste.

What Foods You Can Throw in Your Garden?

Assuming you have a compost bin set up in your garden, quite a few food scraps can be thrown in there! This includes fruit and vegetable peelings, coffee grounds, eggshells, and more.

While you may be tempted to throw everything from your kitchen into your compost bin, some things should be avoided. This includes meat, dairy, oils, and anything else that might attract pests.

So what can you do with all those food scraps if you can’t throw them in your garden? Many community gardens or farmer’s markets will accept them for composting. You can also look into starting your own compost bin at home.

No matter what you decide to do, throwing food scraps into your garden is a great way to reduce food waste and give back to the environment.

What Foods You Should Avoid Throwing in Your Garden?

You should avoid throwing some foods in your garden, as they can do more harm than good. Here are a few examples:

  • Dairy products – milk, cheese, yogurt, etc. These can attract rodents and other pests and promote mold and bacteria growth.
  • Fatty meats – bacon, sausage, etc. Again, these can attract pests and also encourage the growth of bacteria.
  • Fruits and vegetables that are past their prime can decompose quickly and release harmful toxins into the soil that can damage plant life.
  • Processed foods – things like bread, pastries, cereals, etc. These lack the nutrients plants need to thrive and can rob the soil of vital nutrients.
  • Leftovers from your dinner table – while tossing those scraps into the garden may seem like a good idea, they may contain harmful chemicals from pesticides or herbicides that can damage or kill plants. It’s best to compost these items instead.
  • Coffee grounds – while they may sound like a great fertilizer, they can acidify the soil and make it difficult for plants to take up nutrients.
  • Spices – while small amounts of certain spices may benefit your plants, too much can be detrimental. Certain spices like cayenne pepper, chili powder, and garlic powder can burn your plants’ leaves and stunt their growth.

You can keep your garden healthy and thriving by avoiding these foods and opting for natural, organic fertilizers and compost!

Tips For Handling Food Scraps

When it comes to food scraps, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

First, avoid throwing away any scraps that could attract pests. This includes meat, bones, and dairy products.

Second, compost your food scraps if possible. This will help improve your soil’s quality and provide plant nutrients.

Third, if you must throw away food scraps, do so in a way that will not attract animals or pests. For example, you can place them in a sealed container or bag before disposing of them in the garbage.

Finally, don’t forget to check with your local municipality for any special instructions regarding food scraps. Different cities and towns may have their own rules about properly disposing of food waste.

Dos And Don’ts Of Composting In Your Garden

Don’t just toss the scraps in the trash when you finish your food. Composting is a great way to reduce waste and enrich your garden soil. Here are some dos and don’ts to help you get started:


  • Choose a sunny spot for your compost pile or bin. The heat will help speed up the decomposition process.
  • Add a layer of dead leaves or straw to help aerate the compost and keep it from getting too soggy.
  • Chop up larger pieces of food waste so they break down more quickly.
  • Stir the compost regularly to promote airflow and keep things decomposing evenly.


  • Don’t put meat, bones, or dairy in your compost. They can attract pests and create unpleasant odors.
  • Also, avoid using any diseased plant material, as you don’t want to risk spreading diseases to healthy plants in your garden.
  • Try not to let the compost get too wet or too dry – aim for a balance of moisture so that it feels like a damp sponge when you squeeze it.
  • Don’t overfill your compost bin or pile. For the best results, you need a good ratio of greens (nitrogen-rich materials) and browns (carbon-rich materials).

How To Compost Food Scraps?

Assuming you have a backyard, the easiest way to simply compost food scraps is to bury them in the garden. This method, known as “cold composting,” doesn’t require any special equipment or ingredients. All you need is a shovel!

To cold compost, simply dig a hole in your garden bed (about 10-12 inches deep), add your food scraps, then cover it with soil. Make sure to bury the scraps at least 6 inches deep so that critters don’t dig them up. Repeat this process every time you have food scraps to compost.

Over time, the buried food scraps will decompose and become rich, nutrient-rich soil that your plants will love. Cold composting is a slow process (it can take several months for the scraps to decompose fully), but it’s easy and requires very little effort on your part.

If you want a faster way to compost food scraps, you can build a compost bin or purchase one from a garden store. Compost bins are containers that help speed up the decomposition process. They also contain vents to control airflow and drainage holes to release excess moisture.

To use a compost bin, add your food scraps and a few handfuls of soil, leaves, or other “brown” matter to help aerate the pile. Turn the compost pile every week or two (to ensure it gets enough oxygen), and keep it moist by adding water as necessary. With this method, your food scraps should be fully broken down in about six weeks.

Composting Directly on The Ground

Composting Directly on The Ground

When it comes to composting, there are a lot of different methods and opinions out there. But when it comes to throwing food scraps directly on the ground in your garden, you should be aware of a few dos and don’ts.

First, let’s start with the dos:

Ensure you’re only throwing non-toxic food scraps on the ground. This means no meat, dairy, or oils.

Do chop up larger pieces of food so they decompose more quickly.

Cover your food scraps with a layer of leaves or mulch to help keep them from attracting pests.

Now for the don’ts:

Don’t throw any moldy or rotting food on the ground. This can attract unwanted pests or spread disease.

Don’t put any bones in your compost pile. They take much longer to decompose and can attract dogs or other animals looking for a snack.

Following these simple tips, you can compost safely and effectively in your backyard!

How Long Does It Take for Vegetable Scraps to Decompose?

It takes anywhere from a few days to a few weeks for vegetable scraps to decompose. The time it takes depends on the type of vegetable, how it was prepared, and the conditions in your compost pile or bin. For example, hard vegetables like carrots and potatoes take longer to break down than soft vegetables like tomatoes and cucumbers.

To speed up the decomposition process, chop or shred your vegetable scraps into small pieces before adding them to your compost bin or pile. You can also add some leaves or grass clippings to help balance the mix. And be sure to keep your compost moist – not too wet, but not too dry – by adding water as needed.

With proper care, your vegetable scraps will be transformed into nutrient-rich compost that you can use to fertilize your garden beds and potted plants.

Throw Food Scraps in Woods

Throwing food scraps in the woods is not recommended as it can attract wildlife, cause the spread of disease, and create an unpleasant environment for people visiting the woods. It is best to compost food scraps instead.

If you are in a rural area, you could feed food scraps to animals such as chickens or pigs.

Maintenance Tips for Your Compost Pile

Assuming you have already set up your compost pile, here are some maintenance tips to keep in mind:

  • The key to a healthy compost pile is a balance of green and brown materials. Green materials include fruit and vegetable scraps, while brown materials include dead leaves and twigs. Aim for a roughly equal mix of the two.
  • Keep your compost pile moist but not soggy. Too much moisture will cause it to smell bad and attract pests, while not enough will make it slow down or even stop working altogether.
  • Turn your compost regularly to aerate it and help speed up the decomposition process. A pitchfork works well for this.
  • When adding new materials to your compost pile, bury them beneath existing ones so they don’t attract pests.
  • If you notice that your compost pile is attracting pests, add some lime or wood ashes to help deter them.
  • Once it’s ready, use your finished compost in the garden or as a top dressing for your lawn.

By following these simple tips, you can ensure your compost pile stays healthy and productive all season long!

Tips On Keeping Your Garden Healthy After Throwing Food Scraps

  • Avoid throwing away moldy or rotten food scraps. These can introduce pathogens and other harmful organisms into your garden soil.
  • Chop up larger food scraps into smaller pieces to help them decompose more quickly.
  • Add some green material (e.g., grass clippings) to your food scraps to help balance the carbon-to-nitrogen ratio.
  • Avoid adding too much of any one type of food scrap to your compost pile or bin. A mix of different types of organic matter will decompose more evenly and provide better nutrients for your plants.
  • Don’t add meat, bones, or dairy products to your compost pile or bin, as these can attract pests and cause odors.
  • Cover your compost pile or bin with soil to help keep the pests and odors away.
  • Turn over your compost pile or bin every week or two to aerate it and help it decompose more quickly.
  • Don’t let your food scraps sit in the sun for too long, as this can cause them to break down unevenly and attract pests.

Alternatives To Throwing Food Scraps in Your Garden

There are many alternatives to throwing food scraps in your garden. You can compost them, feed them to animals, or simply throw them away.

Composting is a great way to reduce the amount of waste you produce and fertilize your garden simultaneously. There are many ways to compost, including bin methods and tumblers. If you don’t have the space for a composter, you can find community gardens or programs that will take your food scraps.

Feeding food scraps to animals is another great alternative. Chickens, pigs, and rabbits love fresh fruits and vegetables. You can also find worms that will eat your food scraps. This is a great way to reduce waste and provide fresh food for your animals.

If you don’t want to compost or feed your food scraps to animals, you can always throw them away. Many municipalities have programs to collect food waste for landfill disposal or incineration.

What To Do With Food Scraps Without Composting?

If you don’t have a compost bin, or if your municipality doesn’t allow food scraps in yard waste, there are still options for recycling your food waste. Here are some ideas for what to do with food scraps without composting:

  • Feed them to animals: If you have chickens or other poultry, they will love eating most kitchen scraps. Just make sure you’re not feeding them anything moldy or spoiling.
  • Start a worm bin: Worms can eat their weight in food scraps daily, and their castings make excellent fertilizer. You can buy a worm bin or build your own out of an old plastic storage container.
  • Bury them: Bury fruit and vegetable peels a few inches deep in the soil of your garden beds. They will decompose and add nutrients to the soil over time.
  • Make “compost tea”: Fill a bucket with water and add kitchen scraps like coffee grounds, eggshells, and fruit peels. Let it steep for a few days, then water your plants. The nutrients will seep into the soil and help your plants grow healthy and strong.
  • Donate them: Contact your local food bank or soup kitchen and see if they will accept fresh produce or other kitchen scraps. They can use the food to help feed people in need.


Throwing food scraps in your garden can be a great way to reduce waste and provide your plants with some extra nutrients. However, knowing the dos and don’ts of throwing food scraps into your garden is important. Following these guidelines will ensure that you are not introducing harmful organisms or diseases into your soil while giving your plants the essential nutrients they need to thrive. With just a little knowledge, you can help create a healthy and productive outdoor space for yourself!

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is it good to put vegetable scraps in my garden?

Throwing food scraps in your garden can be a great way to add nutrients to the soil and help your plants grow. However, you should keep a few things in mind when doing this. First, ensure you are only throwing away scraps that are safe for plants. For example, avoid throwing away bones or meat, as these can attract pests or diseases. Second, chop up the scraps into small pieces so that they will break down quickly. Third, don’t overdo it – too much food waste can actually harm your plants. Finally, consider composting your food scraps instead of throwing them into the garden. This will help to ensure that the nutrients are properly broken down and absorbed by your plants.

What happens when you put kitchen scraps in the garden?

When you put kitchen scraps in the garden, they decompose and release nutrients into the soil that help plants grow. However, putting too much kitchen waste in the garden can overwhelm the system and create an environmental hazard. The key is to find a balance that works for your garden. Additionally, it is important to note that many kitchen scraps are unsuitable for a garden. Citrus peels, for example, can be acidic and can harm certain plant species. It is also important to avoid food scraps with mold or fungus, as they can spread disease to plants.

Can you bury kitchen waste in the garden?

For starters, you need to ensure you’re burying the food scraps deep enough. If not, animals will dig them up and mess with your yard. Secondly, you must be careful what food scraps you throw in the garden. Some food items can harm your plants if not properly composted first. Finally, you need to make sure that you’re regularly turning over the compost pile so that everything breaks down evenly.

What scraps Cannot be composted?

Some food scraps cannot be composted, and these should be disposed of in other ways. Here are some examples of food scraps that cannot be composted: meat and bones, dairy products, fats and oils, citrus fruits, eggshells, etc. These food scraps can attract pests or diseases to your compost pile, so avoiding adding them is best. If you have questions about whether a certain food scrap can be composted, it’s always best to ask an expert before adding it to your pile.