The Dirt Factory


The Dirt Factory, located at 4308 Market Street, is the University City District’s answer to how to keep organic waste out of the regular waste stream. Residents can drop off household scraps and yard waste, which is processed by two Earth Tub machines into high-quality compost that can be used in yards, raised beds and container gardens.


When I arrived this morning on a grey and cold morning when it was just starting to rain pellets of ice, I entered the site where one yellow-uniformed University City District employee was standing. I signed in, then dropped my smallish small bag of vegetable scraps, eggshells, tea bags and coffee grounds into the composer. It was as simple as that.

According to their website, “UCD collects bagged leaves and wood chips from the neighborhood for 
processing at The Dirt Factory. Do you have bagged leaves or wood chips? Contact to arrange pickup.

You can also drop off up to 5 gallons of organic food waste per week at The Dirt Factory. The facility is open for drop-off from 5-6pm every Wednesday and 10:30-11:30am on Saturdays.”

Items that are accepted include:

Beer Mash
Coffee Grounds
Egg Shells
Flour & Cornmeal
Grass Clippings
Fruits And Vegetables
Pine Needles
Shredded Hardwood
Stale Bread
Straw And Hay

I am so glad to have a free composting option nearby(ish) that can accept my scraps. Due to the fact that they don’t accept bones, meat, or oil, however, this means that I will have to be more conscious of eating all my leftovers and not letting them spoil, and I will unfortunately have to trash the chicken carcass that results from the whole chicken I’m roasting tomorrow. One more reason to go vegetarian, huh?


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