What to do with leftover potting soil?
January 29, 2015 11:05 AM   Subscribe

I'm an apartment dweller with an extensive container garden and I'm moving into an apartment without access to outdoor space.

I mostly grow vegetables on my porch in the summer, but the place I'm moving to has no yard or porch. I'm in New England right now so there are no plants to worry about and I have a place to store the (stacked) containers in the hopes that my living situation will change some day, but what to do with all that leftover soil? I don't have a yard to dump it, or friends who want to take over the gardening. All the suggestions I've found online say to re-use it, but I just need to get rid of it!

Can I throw the soil out with my usual trash? Are there better uses for it?
posted by stripesandplaid to Home & Garden (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Put it on kijiji or craigslist, maybe someone will take it for their composter.
posted by lizbunny at 11:13 AM on January 29, 2015 [3 favorites]

Perhaps you could it outside with a sign like, "Good soil. FREE because I'm moving." I know it's cold outside but likely someone will snap it up if you live in a moderately or frequently trafficked area.
posted by smorgasbord at 11:14 AM on January 29, 2015 [3 favorites]

Any local schools with community gardens? My university's preschool has a large garden and they keep or start lots of things indoors, in containers, until spring.
posted by rubster at 11:26 AM on January 29, 2015 [4 favorites]

What about getting some lights and setting up a spot inside to grow micro- or baby greens?

The Boston Natural Areas Network can probably find someone (e.g. a community garden or greenhouse) that will take it off your hands.
posted by sevenless at 11:38 AM on January 29, 2015

This is precisely the sort of situation that Freecycle is made for. It looks like there are 113 Freecycle groups in the Boston area.
posted by DrGail at 11:42 AM on January 29, 2015 [2 favorites]

Maybe one of your neighbors would like a patio garden of their own? You could put a sign in the common area for a few days or a week and if there are no takers then try any or all of the great suggestions above.
posted by Room 641-A at 11:55 AM on January 29, 2015

As someone who runs a community garden and food pantry, I'd say look for something like that who may want or or even may be able to come get it with a couple of five gallon containers or something.
posted by stormygrey at 12:13 PM on January 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

Definitely Craigslist or similar
posted by radioamy at 12:17 PM on January 29, 2015

I would be happy to take it off your hands if you lived nearby, because I need to top off my raised vegetable beds every growing season, and used potting soil is perfect for this purpose. Surely there are gardeners near you who do the same.
posted by caryatid at 2:04 PM on January 29, 2015

I've left this by a common apartment dumpster in a previous move and it went FAST.
posted by deludingmyself at 2:06 PM on January 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

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