Maine Compost School

2023 Class Schedule


8:00 a.m. Registration

8:30 a.m. Welcome, Introduction of Participants, Introduction to the Course, Mark King, Environmental Specialist, Maine DEP—Director of Maine Compost School

9:00 a.m. Biology of Composting, Mark Hedrich, Nutrient Management Program Manager, Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry

9:45 a.m. Composting Methods & Systems, Mark King

10:30 a.m. Break

10:45 a.m. Compost Feedstocks – Characteristics, Types, Potential Problems, Complementary and C:N, Mark Hedrich

11:45 a.m. Lunch on-site

12:30 p.m. Compost Feedstocks (Cont.)– Laboratory Exercise, Maine Compost Team

2:00 p.m. Composting Food Scraps within Your Community, Mark King

2:45 p.m. Break

3:00 p.m. Business of Composting, Nick Rowley, University of Maine Cooperative Extension

4:00 p.m. Wrap up


8:00 a.m. Pile Management, Mark King

9:00 a.m. Break

9:15 a.m. Pile Management – Field Exercise, Mark King

10:30 a.m. Break

10:45 a.m. Compost Equipment – Functions, Types, and Safe Use of Equipment (onsite), Nick Rowley

11:30 a.m. Lunch onsite

12:15 p.m. Leave for Field Trips

Hatch Hill (Community Compost Site)
Rainbow Valley Farm (Farm-based Compost Site)
Town of Farmington/University of Maine Farmington (Town-Gown Food Scrap Composting)
Living Acres (Agribusiness Composting Operation)

5:30 p.m. Return to Highmoor


8:00 a.m. Composting Site Selection and Management-Mike Parker, Environmental Specialist, Maine DEP

8:45 a.m. Math 101, Mike Parker

9:15 a.m. Break

9:30 a.m. Sizing your compost pad—Doing the math, Mike Parker

10:15 a.m. Site Development Outdoor Exercise—Designing your site, Maine Compost Team

11:30 a.m. Lunch – on-site

12:15 p.m. Recipe Development (classroom) – Reading Feedstock Analysis –Hands-On Inside Activity, Mark Hedrich

1:30 Recipe Development (classroom) – Hands-On Outside Activity, Maine Compost Team

2:45 Recipe Development Doing the Math, Mark Hedrich

4:15 Wrap-up


8:00 a.m. Trouble-shooting the compost piles (Part 1), Mark King

8:45 a.m. Break

9:00 a.m. Trouble-shooting the compost piles (Part 2), Mark King

11:00 a.m. Innovative Uses of Compost (From Mortality Management to Soil Remediation), Mark King

11:45 a.m. Lunch onsite

12:30 p.m. Leave Highmoor for Field Trips
We Compost It (Commercial Food Scrap Compost Company)
Little River Compost (Commercial Food Scraps/Farm By-products Compost Facility

4:45 p.m. Return to Highmoor


8:00 a.m. Solvita Test – Hands-On Activity, Mark King

9:00 a.m. Compost Utilization in Agriculture, Dr. Peyton Ginakes: University of Maine Research Assistant,

10:00 a.m. Break

10:15 a.m. Compost Application Rates, Nick Rowley

11:00 a.m. Quality, Maturity and End Use Dr. Will Brinton, President, Woods End Research Laboratory

12:00 p.m. Lunch – on-site

12:45 p.m. Laboratory Exercise – Solvita Maturity Test, Mark King.

1:30 p.m. Certification Exam, Course Evaluation

3:00 p.m. Depart for Home!