The Book on Composting: Compost City!

Compost City Practical Composting Know How for Small Space Living

I’m a-wiggle like a pound of earthworms in their very first worm bin. Why? I wrote a book about composting!

I am so excited to share the news of “Compost City: Practical Composting Know-How for Small-Space Living,” which will be available in bookstores and online on May 19, 2015. It’s packed with home and community composting strategies, as well as illustrations scratched out by my compost-covered hand (including a bunch of cute animals pooping).

I love composting. Even though I live in cramped quarters in New York City, I’ve found surprisingly easy ways to make sure my peels and scraps get into the ground (or a potted plant) and not the landfills. My hope is that “Compost City” will turn you on to fun, fabulous ways you can start composting in ANY space too!

Here’s the summary from the back jacket:

These days, everyone’s talking about compost.

Along with backyard chickeners, balcony beekeepers, rooftop farmers, and community gardeners, urban composters are part of a bumper crop of pioneers who are redefining the agri-cultures of crowded towns and cities.

You may think you need a big yard to compost. Think again. Compost City teaches you how to easily choose and care for a compost system that fits perfectly into your (tiny) space, (busy) schedule, and (multifaceted) lifestyle.

Whether you live in a cramped apartment or a sprawling town house, or  you dream of composting in a shared space with pals, Compost City provides simple and effective indoor and outdoor composting options for anyone looking to go a little greener.

Packed with research, expert testimonies, and a healthy dose of humor, Compost City will help you:

– find space, time, and even cohorts for your compost adventure

– ease your fears of backbreaking labor, obnoxious odors, big messes, and creepy crawlies (hint: you can compost successfully without any of the above!)

– convince compost-wary family, friends, neighbors, and community leaders to green light your compost project

– compost your food scraps and yard waste with ease!

Compost City serves all eco-curious citizens from casual hobbyists to staunch activists.

Put your compost cap on. Whether you compost one tea bag or whole honking barrel-fulls of scraps at a time, you’re about to have a whole lot of fun.

If you have any questions about the book, would like to help me promote it in your area, or just wanna talk compost, compost, compost, drop me a line in the comments below!

Praise for “Compost City!

“‘Compost City’ is an excellent how-to book for anyone who wants to start composting, especially people who live in apartments and might not have a big backyard with ample space for a sprawling compost system. The book is both practical and funny, and is stuffed with DIY projects and anecdotes about urban composting success stories.” (

“Rebecca Louie’s small and handy book debunks the myths about composting, including the most disabling myth: that you can’t do it well in a suburb or a city … Louie makes the chemistry of compost and the various methods — open-air, vermiculture, trench composting, bokashi — easy to understand.” (The Denver Post)

“You’ve never seen a book on composting like this one—it’s wonderful. No excuses, no putting it off. Compost City guides even the most squeamish sophisticate into delightful partnership with browns, greens, and worms.”—Joel Salatin, farmer, author, and educator at Polyface Farm

“A master composter and real-life eco-hero wielding a worm fork, Rebecca Louie makes composting fun, inviting, and accessible to everyone from beginners to gardening pros. She renews my faith in a sustainable future, and will inspire yours.”—Gabrielle Langholtz, editor of Edible Manhattan and Edible Brooklyn

Compost City is a must-read for any would-be composter, urban or otherwise. In an informative, whimsical way, Rebecca Louie de-icks composting, debunks its myths, and DIY-ifies its methods. By the end, you’ll be able to compost this book, but you wouldn’t dream of doing so for fear of losing a vital resource.”—Jonathan Bloom, author of American Wasteland and creator of

“Shelburne Farms is always looking for new ways to connect teachers and students with agriculture that goes beyond their time here on the farm. Compost is a crucial component to healthy food systems, but you don’t need 1,400 acres to practice this. Compost City illustrates all you need to know about recycling food, no matter how small the space at home or school. We believe that learning should be infused with joy and wonder, and Louie does just that with her fun, engaging style. Compost City will be well-used in our library.”—Alec Webb, President of Shelburne Farms, VT

“Composting is a great way to give back to the miraculous organism that is soil, and Rebecca Louie’s informative, hands-on, highly entertaining how-to makes this complex process real and doable for the home composter. It’s a fun read, and more important, it’s full of technical information and specific tips that empower anyone to go forth and compost successfully. Thank you, Rebecca! Compost City will help heal our cities and soil.”—Deborah Koons Garcia, writer, director, and producer of Symphony of the Soil and The Future of Food

“In Compost City, master composter Rebecca Louie explores simple and effective ways to compost almost anything you have in your fridge or garden, providing workable ideas with a generous helping of humour. Step by step guides to maintenance, worm farming or even container options for the urban gardener are detailed, yet digestible…Compost City is a playful and accessible book for composters new and seasoned alike.”  Sanctuary Magazine

“The book is full of such adorable illustrations, plus silliness and puns galore. It’s also extremely thorough, well-researched, and seriously practical.”

“Compost City is clearly written, humorous, informative, and above all practical….I recommend Compost City to anyone who gardens, is considering composting, or already composts, no matter where they live or what scale they plan on working.” Fangirl Nation

2 Comments on The Book on Composting: Compost City!

  1. Thanks for writing this book! It has given me the inspiration I needed to attempt composting in the city. Week 1 of my balcony worm farm and I have already given my plants their first dose of worm tea. Looking forward to harvesting the black gold too!

    • Wow! Thanks so much for leaving a note. I’m so happy you’re finding Compost City helpful! Be sure to keep your worms out of direct sun on the balcony so the little guys don’t bake. Have fun, keep me posted, and WORM ON!

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