Classes and Other Activities for the Public

Bernalillo County Extension Master Composters

Our classes include the art, science, materials, methods, and benefits of various composting techniques. New classes will be added as they are scheduled. Be sure to check again if you don't find a class that works for you. And, details might change so please check for revisions.

Classes are FREE and open to all ages unless otherwise noted. Registration is required for most activities. Welcome!

Please see individual class descriptions at the bottom of this page.

02/28/2017
Tuesday
Bokashi Bucket Composting: 1:15 pm to 2:30 pm at Meadowlark Senior Center, 4330 Meadowlark Lane SE, Rio Rancho (map). The class is free and open to all seniors. To register send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
03/08/2017  
Wednesday
Raised Bed Gardening and Composting: 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at Bear Canyon Senior Center, Room 5, 4645 Pitt NE, Albuquerque (map). To register call 505-767-5959 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
03/09/2017
Thursday
Composting with Worms (Vermicomposting): 1:15 pm to 2:30 pm at Meadowlark Senior Center, 4330 Meadowlark Lane SE, Rio Rancho (map). The class is free and open to all seniors. To register send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
03/11/2017
Saturday
Home Composting Basics: 11:00 am to 12:30 pm at at Osuna Nursery, 501 Osuna Road NE, Albuquerque (map). To register call 505-345-6644 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
03/11/2017  
Saturday
Constructing a Wooden Compost Bin: 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm at the home of Bill and Rye Bailey in the south valley. This is a hands-on class. Bill and Rye will provide the wood, already sawn to size. The class will build a New Zealand four-bin composter. To register send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Class size is limited to 8. (Note: the bin will be used as part of May 7 Intermediate Hands-on Composting Workshop. See below.) Instructors: Bill and Rye Bailey.
03/11/2017
Saturday
Home Composting Basics: 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm at at Urban Gardening and Composting event at Casa San Ysidro , 973 Old Church Road, Corrales, NM (map). To register send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
03/22/2017  
Wednesday
Composting in Tumbler Bins: 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at Bear Canyon Senior Center, Room 5, 4645 Pitt NE, Albuquerque (map). To register call 505-767-5959 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
03/23/2017  
Thursday
Composting in Tumbler Bins: 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at North Valley Senior Center, 3825 4th Street NW, Albuquerque (map). To register call 505-761-4031 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
03/30/2017  
Thursday
Composting with Worms (Vermicomposting): 10:00 am to 11:30 am at North Valley Senior Center, 3825 4th Street NW, Albuquerque (map). To register call 505-761-4031 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: Mel Chavez.
04/01/2017
Saturday
Bokashi Bucket Composting: 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm. Instructor John Zarola.
Composting With Worms: 3:15 pm to 4:15 pm. Instructor Mel Chavez.
Both at Juan Tabo Library, 3407 Juan Tabo NE (map). To register phone 505-291-6260 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: TBA.
04/12/2017  
Wednesday
Improving Desert Garden Soil: 9:00 am to 11:00 am at Highland Senior Center, 131 Monroe NE (map). To register call 505-767-5210 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
04/12/2017 to
05/06/2017  

1 Wednesday
4 Saturdays
Master Composter Volunteer Training: at the Bernalillo County Extension Office. Please see Spring 2017 Master Composter Volunteer Training for all the details and an application. Master composter volunteer training is a 26 hour "train-the-trainer" program which prepares individuals to become volunteer educators in a variety of composting methods for the community. Cost is $90.
04/22/2017  
Saturday
Composting With Worms (Vermicomposting): 11:00 am to 12:00 noon at Esther Bone Memorial Library, 950 Pinetree Rd. SE, Rio Rancho 87124 (map). To register call 505-891-3938 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: Mel Chavez.
04/26/2017  
Wednesday
Composting with Worms: 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at Bear Canyon Senior Center, Room 5, 4645 Pitt NE, Albuquerque (map). To register call 505-767-5959 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: Mel Chavez.
05/07/2017  
Sunday
Intermediate Hands-On Composting Workshop: 9:00 am to 2:00 (or possibly 3:00) pm at the home of Bill and Rye Bailey in the south valley. Prerequisite: previous attendance at Home Composting Basics or comprehensive workshop. Lunch will be provided. Cost will be $25. (Free for BCEMC members and interns.) For more information about the workshop and registration see Intermediate Hands-On Composting Workshop. Instructors: Rye Bailey, Bill Bailey, and Mel Chavez.
05/10/2017  
Wednesday
Home Composting Basics: 9:00 am to 11:00 am at Highland Senior Center, 131 Monroe NE (map). To register call 505-767-5210 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: Carl Soderberg.
05/24/2017  
Wednesday
Improving Desert Garden Soil: 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at Bear Canyon Senior Center, Room 5, 4645 Pitt NE, Albuquerque (map). To register call 505-767-5959 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
06/21/2017  
Wednesday
Bokashi Bucket Composting: 9:00 am to 11:00 am at Highland Senior Center, 131 Monroe NE (map). To register call 505-767-5210 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
06/21/2017  
Wednesday
Bokashi Bucket Composting: 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at Bear Canyon Senior Center, Room 5, 4645 Pitt NE, Albuquerque (map). To register call 505-767-5959 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: Kathy Harris.
06/24/2017  
Saturday
Improving Desert Garden Soil: 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at Esther Bone Memorial Library, 950 Pinetree Rd. SE, Rio Rancho 87124 (map). To register call 505-891-3938 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.
06/27/2017  
Tuesday
Raised Bed Gardening and Composting: 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm at Esther Bone Memorial Library, 950 Pinetree Rd. SE, Rio Rancho 87124 (map). To register call 505-891-3938 or send email to register@nmcomposters.org. Instructor: John Zarola.

Class Descriptions

Bokashi Bucket Composting: Home composting is recycling that produces a useful soil conditioner. The Bokashi bucket method is a useful choice for, but not limited to, small indoor spaces, eg. apartments and condos. It is neat, tidy, and requires little physical labor. The science and methodology of this method will be presented and demonstrated so that a participant can easily get started at home. Prior to the class a useful read by Adam Footer is posted at Reading Materials.

Composting in Tumbler Bins: The class will cover the basics of home composting in the desert. The science, art, materials, methods, choices and benefits will be included. Then, particular emphasis will be on successful use of tumbling bin containers. Prior to the class, participants would benefit from reading Tips for Using Composting Tumbler Bins in the Desert.

Composting with Worms: Worm composting is recycling that produces a useful soil conditioner. The class will include the selection of an appropriate worm species and creating a healthy environment for that species. Useful take-home information will cover all aspects of setting up and managing a worm composting operation indoors or outdoors. Prior to the class you may read all of the useful information at Worm Sources.

Home Composting Basics: Home composting is recycling that produces a useful soil conditioner. Basic composting science will be presented with a special focus on useful practices for a high desert climate. A variety of home composting options will be covered. Useful take-home information will help a participant get started and/or improve an already chosen composting method. Prior to the class it may be useful to read our brochures: (1) Composting in the Desert, and (2) Selecting a Method that Works for You.

Improving Desert Garden Soil: Amending desert garden soil is a continuous effort. The class will cover the basics of soil constituents, soil testing and the benefits of the soil food web. The value of humus in finished compost will be prominent in the discussion. Options for improving soil fertility and resiliency in the face of warm temperatures and low precipitation will be presented. Useful take-home information will allow participants to plan for and implement soil amending practices right away. Prior to the class a useful read, The Soul of the Soil by Grace Gershuny, posted at Reading Materials.

Raised Bed Gardening and Composting: Raised garden beds in the high desert present many useful management options for home gardeners. Soil, amendments, mulches and irrigation methods are well-contained by raised beds. The class will will cover set-up, soil, irrigation, mulching, and sheet composting for soil fertility in a raised bed.