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Here is a situation I often find myself in. I’m in a park (trees, grass, etc), I’m feeding a fruit to my kid. At the end when I’m left with the peel (or seed or whatever is the waste), I look at the trash can, but decide instead to leave it on the ground.

I’m doing it discreetly because I feel like I’m doing something wrong (littering a public place), but somehow it feels more right to let it rot on the ground instead of the trash can.

Does it make sense?

  • Hello and welcome! A good answer may depend on knowing what typical sorts of fruit you're talking about, and where you're located (or at least, what the climate is like, and how municipal waste is handled). – LShaver May 6 '20 at 13:24
  • Today it was a banana, but it could have been anything (If you are saying it depends on the fruit, I think it could be part of the answer for everyone to benefit). I am in Israel (no idea how municipal waste works). – Nathan H May 6 '20 at 13:53
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Depending on what fruits you're talking about, leaving it to rot out in the open could take weeks up to months (e.g. bananas or orange peels take very long, apple peels on the other hand rot faster). This is not desirable for public spaces. Please always put your waste into the next bin when you're in park or similar area. If you're out hiking, you might leave the quickly rotting waste (tbh I do so with apple cores or similar). Have a read here, they explain quite good, how leaving organic waste out in nature is not a good idea.

If you're concerned about non-correct waste disposal, put the fruit back into the packaging you had it in and throw it into the correct kind of bin at home.

Also, a really nasty side effect of leaving organic waste out in the open is that it attracts pests, be it roaches or rats or similar animals. To you the waste is not edible, but to them it's quite fine. The more waste is left out in the open, the more pests are attracted, spoiling the recreation for everyone using the park.

  • Thanks. The fact that other life forms would consume the waste is actually what drove my thinking. Instead of rotting in a confined space, nature would eat it away. – Nathan H May 7 '20 at 7:39
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    The nature that eats waste is generally not the nature we like. Rats, beetles, wasps (for meat scraps), scavengers and squabblers. Attracting more of them to a park isn't helping anyone. – Kate Gregory May 9 '20 at 15:44
  • This is a good answer, but it could be even better if it included some of the interesting details from the linked article on deschuteslandtrust.org. In particular, the time it takes for banana peels to decompose is relevant to the question. – Nic May 28 '20 at 19:48
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    Wonder if it being a park drives the whole answer. I am in similar situation n similar thinking but where I go for a daily walk, I am close to a forest like bushes , secluded(not a designated or classified forest). Is it fine for me then to throw all veg n fruit waste there? My living space isn't too suitable for composting. – Whirl Mind May 29 '20 at 15:28

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