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COMPOSTING INTEGRAL TO PUBLIC GARDEN

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At Longwood Gardens, a 1,077-acre display garden located in Kennett Square, PA, composting has gone beyond just being a way to recycle organics. The Longwood property is a former Quaker arboretum and DuPont estate with roots in agriculture. The composting operation is located in a nonpublic area of the property that includes a facility for soil mix processing and soils recycling, as well as agricultural fields. Longwood's composting facility accepts several feedstocks: horse manure gathered from local farms, wood chips retrieved from on site and the community, food waste and horticultural residues from on-site operations and the ground fines from mulch production. In January 2009, Longwood engaged in an economic analysis of its composting operation. The goal was to perform a thorough operational cost/benefit analysis of the farm-scale composting facility. The components analyzed include feedstocks, products, equipment and labor. Feedstock amounts were used to determine diverted landfill costs, while product amounts and values provided diverted purchasing cost data.

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