CitizensNet BannerCitizensNet Banner

September 19, 2017

STAR Certified Master Composter Class
September 21 - 24

Houston-area composting enthusiasts can enhance their skills and spread the sustainable practice through a Sept. 21-24 training at the City of Houston's Green Building Resource Center. The YardWise Master Composter Certificate Program, administered by the State of Texas Alliance for Recycling, offers an in-depth course featuring a team of experienced Houston professionals. At the end of the training, Master Composters will be able to create "compost recipes" for specific plants, and help others embrace the environmental benefits of composting.

Course schedule at the Houston Permitting Center, 1002 Washington Avenue:

  • Thursday, Sept. 21, 5-9 pm
  • Friday, Sept. 22, 5-9 pm
  • Saturday, Sept. 23, 8 am-2:30 pm
  • Sunday, Sept. 24, 10 am-4 pm

The program includes classroom work, field trips and lectures from the following guest speakers:

  • John Ferguson, Nature's Way Resources
  • Sarah Mason, City of Houston
  • Luis Chamorro, The Ground Up
  • Joe Blanton, Blanton Landscaping
  • Danny Wilson, Farm Dirt
  • Bob Randall, Urban Harvest
  • Pat Greer & H.C. Clark, Pat Greer's Kitchen
  • Lora Hinchcliff, Living Earth Technologies

Green Building Resource Center

To complete their certification, participants will perform 20 hours of volunteer service showing others how to compost.

"Composting can save money with its byproduct of rich fertilizer, and it can reduce the need of toxic pesticides for lawns and gardens. It also reduces amounts of food and foliage waste being deposited in landfills," says Steve Stelzer, program director of the Green Building Resource Center. "When tossed for garbage, this waste creates methane, which is 25 times more harmful than carbon dioxide. Composting is nature's way of recycling-sharing it is our way of helping nature."

Registration is $40 and seating is limited to 20 participants. Interested composters can learn more or enroll online at or by contacting Stelzer at 832-394-9050 or


City of Houston Rain Barrel and Compost Bin Truckload Sale
Orders Due October 8

Rain Barrel Graphic

The City of Houston Green Building Resource Center helps area residents conserve natural resources to lessen the effects of the Texas heat by offering rain barrels and compost bins at a discounted price. The fall edition of its biannual online sale is now open, with a pick-up date of Saturday, Oct. 14.

The 50-gallon rain barrels, which typically retail at $129 and provide homeowners with an affordable alternative to watering from the tap, will be available for $69. Additionally, 65-gallon compost bins, which reduce the volume of garbage needlessly sent to landfills, will be offered for $65. Both come with instructions for easy set-up and use.

To order, visit the website by Sunday, October 8:

Purchases can be picked up Saturday, Oct. 14 from 10 am to 12 pm at the Houston Permitting Center (West) Parking Lot 2, 1002 Washington Ave. GBRC Program Director Steve Stelzer will be available to answer questions and assist all who take part in this offer.

About the Green Building Resource Center:
Located on the first floor of the LEED-certified gold Houston Permitting Center, the Green Building Resource Center has over 70 displays to familiarize oneself with green building technology and materials, including outdoor demonstrations such as a bioswale and vegetated roof with AC condensate. Open Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm, the GBRC also offers Second Saturday free green building consultation. Learn more at