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Jump start spring gardening with compost bin

Winter might not be an ideal time to start thinking about backyard gardening, but it's a good time to get a jump start on gardening and water conservation efforts by setting up a compost bin or rain barrel at your home.

This spring, the Recycling Association of Minnesota (RAM) is working with Pope Douglas Solid Waste Management in Alexandria to bring residents affordable rain barrels and compost bins.

Economic and environmental benefits to using rain barrels and compost bins include:

• Conserving water.

• Helping with storm water management.

• Reducing storm water runoff.

• Reduce more than 25 percent of waste from going to a landfill or waste to energy facility.

Compost bins and rain barrels come with a 10 year warranty, are made from recycled content and are affordable. Compost bins are $55 and rain barrels are $69.

RAM is hosting several rain barrel and compost bin distribution events throughout Minnesota, including Alexandria.

For specific dates or to pre-order for pick-up, go to

RAM has the rain barrels and compost bins on display at its education and resource center Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 852B Lake Street East, Wayzata.

Pope Douglas Solid Waste Management will also have a display at the annual KXRA Home and Garden Show on March 2 and 3 at the Runestone Community Center in Alexandria.

Attendees visiting the booth can view a rain barrel or compost bin and place an order onsite through the RAM website. Bins are pre-sold on the website for pick-up at Pope Douglas Solid Waste Management on May 4.