The annual ECOSS summer habitat restoration event at Seward Park is a favorite among staff and the community. This year’s “Mulch and Mingle” event aimed to care for the species planted last year by mulching around them, and educate communities about the benefits of mulch and compost and the uses for both. The day also featured a compost demonstration, seed ball-making activity, and bird walk with the Seward Park Audubon Center.

Why mulch?

  • Mulch creates an environment that makes it more difficult for weeds and non-native species like blackberry plants to grow.
  • Mulch acts as an insulating layer and helps to regulate soil temperature.
  • Mulch helps the soil stay moist, which can be helpful during the summer season when it doesn’t rain as often.
  • Mulch will eventually break down, providing essential nutrients such as nitrogen to the soil.
  • The optimal way to place mulch is in a doughnut shape around plants, with a couple of inches of space around the stems or trunks of plants.

Why compost?

  • Composting is a great way to reduce food waste and reduce water pollution by diverting waste that would normally go to landfills, which can contaminate groundwater
  • Composting creates nutrient-rich soil and can improve soil quality, which reduces the need for chemical fertilizers that negatively impact water quality
  • Composting can be done at home by burying scraps in your garden, a worm bin, or food digesters.
    • Some items that can be composted at home are fruit and vegetable scraps, bread and grains, coffee grounds, newspaper, cardboard, shavings, and fall leaves.
    • Avoid meat, fish, poultry, dairy products, pet waste, coated paper, and evergreen leaves.

Why worms?

  • Vermicomposting uses worms to break down material and produce worm castings which are very nutrient-rich!
  • Worms increase nutrient availability in soil, and provide better drainage, soil structure, and soil aeration!

The impact of this event will be a healthy and thriving ecosystem site at Seward Park and renewed connections between community and nature! This program is made possible by our collaboration with Green Seattle Partnership.

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