The Chisago Soil and Water Conservation District and the Chisago County Environmental Services and Zoning are partnering with the Recycling Association of Minnesota to offer affordable rain barrels and compost bins to residents of Chisago County. Rain barrels are a great way to reduce the amount of runoff leaving yards, which helps reduce erosion and improves water quality in local lakes and rivers. Rain barrels should be placed beneath a gutter downspout to capture rainwater coming off roofs. The water can be used to water flower gardens or landscaping in your yard. Choose from a white Systern 55 gallon rain barrel or a brown Raincatcher 54 gallon rain barrel, each for $69 plus tax. Both barrels come with a screen top to prevent leaves and mosquitoes from entering the rain barrel, an overflow hose, and a faucet hook up for a hose.
Compost bins help save money on trash disposal, reduce the amount of waste created in the kitchen and outdoors, and converts that waste into a usable soil amendment. Use the compost to reduce fertilizer needs and to mulch around new plants. The Earth Machine composter is black and holds 80 gallons. It includes a lid and harvest door at the base of the composter. The time required for composting varies from a few months to a year depending on the conditions of your pile. Instructions on how to compost will be provided when you purchase the $55 (plus tax) Earth Machine.
Stop by the Chisago County courthouse lobby to see examples of the rain barrels and compost bins. To order rain barrels or compost bins, visit www.chisagoswcd.org and follow the link, or go to www.recycleminnesota.org to order directly. Payment in the form of a credit card will be required at the time of purchase. Orders will be accepted until product runs out. Orders will be available to pick up May 13 at the Chisago County Highway Garage.