Bee Canyon Greenery: Bee-ing green and composting stewards the environment

Bee Canyon Greenery_Birds Eye

Tucked in the canyons of Irvine, within Frank R. Bowerman Landfill, is Bee Canyon GreeneryThe greenery is the flagship composting program created by OCWR that will produce thousands of tons of compost annually. Developed in response to SB 1383, an important piece of environmental legislation passed to reduce methane emissions and promote resource recovery, Bee Canyon Greenery recovers and composts rather than buries edible food.

Composting is an ages-old, natural process that stewards the environment in many ways:

  • Reduces methane emissions by repurposing rather than burying organic waste
  • Produces valuable soil enrichment
  • Preserves landfill space
  • Lowers your carbon footprint

While OCWR produces compost at a commercial level, you can do it at home.

How to compost at home:

Composting at home starts with designating a compost area. Select a shady spot for a composting bin or pile, ideal for watering and layering. Next up, sorting! When sorting waste, sift out compostable food items and non-pesticide treated yard waste. Ensure that non-compostable items including charcoal, grease, pet waste, and more do not get placed into the compost bin and are disposed of properly. After the sorting process, add all compostable items to the bin or pile then stir, water and repeat! For more ideas and information on at-home composting, read Earth 911’s detailed approach.  

“A watermelon that’s disposed of in our landfills will be buried," Weena Dalby, senior environmental resource specialist, says. "When mixed with non-compostable items, it will take more time to break down due to anaerobic (methane, sulfur, and carbon dioxide producing) bacteria. A melon in a landfill could take years to decompose.

"In a greenery and in backyard composting bins, the watermelon will be mixed in with green waste breaking it down in a matter of months,” continued Dalby. “Compost piles create the perfect environment for the microorganisms from the soil to eat the organic waste, breaking it down and creating compost. Composting is key to clearing up more room in our landfills. What was once waste can be re-used as fertilizer to help with new growth and habitat recovery – huge pluses! 

To learn more about composting, recycling, and organic waste visit