• Agromin Featured in KCLU Interview
    Monday, January 8, 2018 at
  • Source: KCLU
    Agromin was recently featured in a KCLU interview. It provides a excellent account of the organic recycling process. To hear the interview, go to  http://bit.ly/2qIzjGK. A transcript is below.

    South Coast-Based Green Recycler That Works To Reduce Climate Change Is One Of Largest In California
    Jan 5, 2018

    Green waste – like tree limbs and grass – can produce an enormous amount of methane if left in a landfill. The methane emits greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. But, there’s a company based in the South Coast that's working to reduce the effects of climate change by taking green waste and putting it back in the ground.

    Source: KCLU
    Large trucks arrive at the Agromin Processing Center in Oxnard. It's one of the largest organic waste recyclers in California. The trucks unload waste from yards of residents throughout Ventura County -- things like grass, tree branches and plants.

    This green waste is sorted and cleaned and then it goes through a grinder.

    "That's a thousand horse power horizontal grinder. You don't want to be caught in it. Basically, it grinds everything together so it makes like a homogenous mulch material that can be composted," said Bill Camarillo, CEO of Agromin based in Oxnard.

    He says its processing facilities throughout the state divert half a million tons of waste from landfills each year.

    Camarillo says this Oxnard processing center -- like Agromin's other facilities -- takes green waste that has been ground to mulch and composts it.

    "The composting process gets the material up to 131 degrees to 160 degrees. The rest of the period of time is just allowing the material to mature like making wine," he said.

    Once it has been composted, it's refined further. And the resulting material becomes the base ingredient for the more than 200 soil products that Agromin makes.

    Source: KCLU
    In one area of the processing center, there are large piles of what look like dirt. These are soil blends that each serve an important purpose, says Camarillo.

    "So, that right there is called top dressing for lawns. That's vegetable garden mix that you can put in your container blends. Premium blend is like a potting soil," he said.

    Gonzalo Delgadillo – who's known as the "blender" – is using a tractor to take the composted base material and add different ingredients to create these soil blends.

    "They send me the recipe, and I make the mixes like the one I make right now."

    These recipes are created by Agromin's chemist, Dr. Rick Wilson, who has a PhD in chemical engineering.

    "I'm sort of the soil doctor. Write the prescription. What do you need to fix a particular challenge to maximize the performance of your agricultural operations or your landscaping operations," he said.
    Using the composted base material, he creates recipes that add different sands and nutrients.

    "We start with a mathematical model – a linear program – where you have all these inputs and outputs and you're saying 'I want to minimize the cost subject to these constraints' and out comes the recipe,: Wilson said.

    Residents, landscapers and even major theme parks like Disneyland in Anaheim and museums like The Getty Center in Los Angeles use Agromin's products. But growers are the company's biggest customers.

    Martin Gramckow with Southland Sod Farms uses one of Agromin's soil products for growing light turf grass.

    "It provided the agronomic need, which is a media that had pore space. It's relatively stable in terms of its breakdown. And it's priced right," he said.

    Agromin is trying to close the carbon loop, says Camarillo.

    "So, we're really trying to be a climate change solutions company," he said.

    In the end, Camarillo says Agromin removes significantly more greenhouse gasses from the environment than it puts in.

    "We produce about 5,000 metric tons of carbon to do what we do. But we actually remove 80,000 metric tons of CO2 out of the atmosphere. So, we're like a carbon negative company. We are trying to reduce the amount of carbon that's in the atmosphere through the plant material and trees," he said.

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  • Plan Your 2018 Garden in January
    Thursday, December 28, 2017 at

  • There isn't a lot to do in the garden during January so use the time to make your 2018 garden plans

    Evaluate Your Landscaping: Take a look at your landscaping—are there bare spots in the lawn, along borders and in the flower garden? Is your irrigation working properly? Do trees need to be trimmed? Make a list of your "to-dos" between now and spring.

    Prune Dormant Fruit Trees and Roses: Remove dead or disease-fill branches. Prune crossing branches.

    Plant California Poppies From Seed: Spread out the seeds on moist soil in garden bare spots. Gently cover seeds with soil. Keep soil moist until seeds begin to sprout. Regular rain should be enough to enable the poppies to take root. Water if rain is infrequent. Weeds will also sprout around the seeds. Cover area with mulch to prevent weed growth.

    Plant California Natives: January is a good time to plant California natives. Natives that bring vibrant color to a garden include California fuchsia, desert mallow, Bush monkeyflower and humming bird sage.

    Keep Lawn Free Of Leaves: Rake fallen leaves from lawns so grass can soak up winter sun and properly dry from winter rains.

    Plant Leafy Green Vegetables: Plant these in the ground in January: arugula, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, chard, fennel and kale,

    Add Bulbs: Pull your tulip, freesia and iris bulbs out of the refrigerator and plant them when outdoor temperatures take on a winter chill.

    Plant Bare Root Fruit Trees & Roses: Bare root fruit and rose trees are in abundance at nurseries this time of year. They are easy to spot—their roots are exposed (no soil) and their limbs are without leaves and usually trimmed back. Once planted, winter rains will keep them moist until spring arrives and leave begin to appear. Plant early in the month. Note: if January is unseasonably warm, the trees may break their dormancy ahead of schedule.

    Properly Recycle Your Christmas Tree: Remove tinsel and decorations from your Christmas tree, cut it up and place it in your green recycling barrel. Check with your local waste hauler for specific instructions in your area. Agromin will accept Christmas trees through January 19 at three of its locations. For a list, got to http://bit.ly/2E7IRhd. Those who drop off their trees will receive a free bag of potting soil.

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  • Drop Off Your Christmas Tree At Agromin, Get Free Potting Mix
    Wednesday, December 27, 2017 at

  • Agromin, the green waste recycler for most of Ventura County, is accepting Christmas trees at three of its locations now through January 19. Residents who drop off their trees will receive a free bag of potting mix.

    Drop off locations are:

    Agromin Organics - 6859 Arnold Rd., Oxnard (Hours: Monday – Friday, 7:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Saturday, 7:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.)

    Agromin/Simi Valley Landfill – 2801 Madera Rd., Sim Valley (Hours: Monday – Saturday, 7:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.)

    Agromin Corporate Office – 201 Kinetic Dr. Oxnard (Hours: Monday – Friday, 7:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.)

    Residents must remove all tinsel, lighting and other decorations before drop off. Flocked and unflocked trees are accepted.

    Christmas trees can also be disposed of at curbside. They must first be cut up so that limbs and branches fit into the green recycling barrel.

    Agromin estimates it will recycle over 100,000 whole and cut Christmas trees after the holidays. The trees will be cleaned, chopped and then composted over a 30-day period. The resulting mulch and soil amendments will then be used by growers, landscapers and consumers.

    For more information, call Agromin at 805-485-9200.

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  • Earths Magnet School Receives Agromin Compost Delivery
    Friday, December 22, 2017 at

  • Earths Magnet School in Newbury Park recently received bags of compost from Agromin. Students will use the soil in the school garden beds where they grow all sorts of vegetables year round. Students will also use the soil in classrooms for their seed sprouting projects. 

    Earths Magnet School is a perfect fit for Agromin. The school focuses its curriculum on the earth, technology, life and physical sciences. Its second grade classes visit Agromin each year.

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