Free Composting Workshops

free composting workshop

It's easy to compost from home! Join a free workshop to learn how.

The first half of each workshop will teach you how to turn kitchen scraps and yard trimmings into a nutrient-rich soil amendment. Home composting is taught by a team of ten rotating LA Sanitation & Environment green waste specialists. The second half of the workshop will focus on the following monthly urban gardening topics taught by Scott Henley and Steve List:

December 2022 - winter gardening do's and don'ts
January 2023 - fruit tree pruning and planting bare root
February 2023 - healthy soils, compost, and worm farming
March 2023 - spring fruits and vegetables

Dates and Locations
The following locations offer workshops from 9am to 11am. Please click each link for a map and directions. You can also download the flyer in English and Spanish.

GAFFEY NATURE CENTER - 721 W. Summerland Place
(Enter beneath the Gaffey underpass; street parking only - do not block driveways)
1st Saturday of each month from 9-11am
Click here to register

(Only the south entrance is open. Enter from Crystal Springs Drive)
2nd Saturday of each month from 9-11am
Click here to register

SOUTH LA WETLANDS - 5413 South Avalon Blvd.
3rd Saturday of each month from 9-11am
Click here to register

4th Saturday of each month from 9-11am
(No December workshop)
Click here to register

Registration is required
 for each participant and due to pandemic precautions, walk-in's cannot be accepted until further notice. Masks are not required but you are welcome to wear one if you wish. We will offer socially distanced seating and have limited attendance. The workshops will be held rain or shine, except during extreme weather events. In the event of a cancellation, you will be notified via email and we will update our social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. We recommend bringing a hat, sunscreen, and water for yourself, particularly on hot days.

Workshop Offerings

The following are available at discounted rates to City of Los Angeles residents for purchase, while supplies last. Proof of residency such as a state-issued ID with home address or a utility bill will be required. All locations accept checks. Griffith Park accepts credit cards as well. Cash is not accepted.

Compost bins - $20
Worm bins - $20
Wing Diggers (compost aeration tools) - $8
* If you do not have proof of residence within the City of Los Angeles, you will be charged the full price of each item purchased as opposed to the discounted price noted above. 

Free mulch and compost are available at all locations. At Griffith Park and Lopez Canyon, bulk mulch and compost will be offered. At Gaffey Nature Center and South LA Wetlands, bagged mulch and compost will be offered.

Water conservation tips and rebate information will be provided by our friends at the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.


Due to pandemic precautions and the need for social distancing, attendance is limited. Registration via Eventbrite is a requirement for each participant. All registered City of Los Angeles residents who attend the workshop will be entered into a drawing to win a FREE rain barrel! Please note that if you have received a rain barrel from the City of Los Angeles in the past 12 months, you are not eligible for the drawing. Please note that City staff, contractors, and vendors may register to attend but will not be entered into the drawing.

Register here:

Our Partners

Steve List is a landscaper and teaches agriculture at Sylmar High School. He has been cultivating high school horticulturists at LAUSD and Sylmar Charter High School for the past 25 years. Since taking over the school’s 2-acre Agriculture Center, he and hundreds of students have launched a green revolution of flowers, fruits and vegetables across the northeast San Fernando Valley, many parts of Los Angeles and Southern California.  At the same time, he has taught his students urban agriculture, nutrition, edible landscaping, and values. He and his students have designed, built and given away over five hundred raised-bed gardens for families without easy access fresh fruits and vegetables. To date, Steve and his horticulture students have secured homes for an estimated 100,000 trees, plants, and seedlings, ensuring that thousands of Angelenos benefit from healthy, fresh produce.

Scott Henley was a sales manager at Ag Natural farm supply where he educated the public on farming in the Urban Gardens. Before becoming a teacher, he directed Whisper Farms Inc. Scott now teaches Horticulture at John C. Fremont High School in South Los Angeles. His passion is helping to educate the community with urban gardens and healthy eating.

Pacoima Beautiful is a grassroots environmental justice organization that provides education, impacts local policy, and supports local arts and culture in order to promote a healthy and sustainable San Fernando Valley. The organization was founded in 1996 by 5 relentless mothers who became distraught by the unpleasant sight of trash and toxic smells they endured while walking their young children to school. They knew that the only way to create a safer and cleaner community for their children and neighbors was through collective action, and so like good neighbors they joined forces to bring Pacoima some of its first major community clean-ups and tree planting events. The beautification projects of the founding mothers set the grassroots foundation that their historically women led organization has stood by for the past 22 years.

Can't make it to a workshop? 

The videos are never as exciting as being live at a class, but we wanted to offer an alternative to help the public learn more about composting and gardening while we were unable to meet in person.

Victory Gardens - Part 1
Victory Gardens - Part 2
Victory Gardens - Part 3

Home Composting - Part 1
Home Composting - Part 2
Home Composting - Part 3
Home Composting - Part 4

Home Composting Presentation

Can't compost at home?
Our friends at LA Compost accept food scraps at community compost hubs and farmers markets around the City of Los Angeles. Visit their website to learn more.