Composting mailbox turns junk mail into plant food: Kenny Be's Yard Arteology

Yard Arteology: The study of neighbors through their lawn decoration...

The junk mail just keeps on coming, even though Denverites no longer have time to read the circulated solicitations of credit card companies, food delivery services and real estate agent/politicians. Instead of emptying the contents of a mailbox into a recycling bin, several Bear Valley Heights neighbors are apparently recycling at the source...

Composting mailbox turns junk mail into plant food: Kenny Be's Yard Arteology
Photo by Kenny Be

Figure 71a. Bear Valley: Shape-shifter turns fliers into fertilizer.

The shape of the mailbox pictured above suggests that the occupant of this home is interested in on-site recycling. The curved enclosure, equipped with a raised letter slot, intimates that this mailbox houses a sophisticated shredding system. The knob below the mail slot indicates that the lower portion of this mailbox is actually a large drawer where the shredded mail collects and is turned into compost. This insinuates that the process is dependent on the help of ravenous earthworms that enter through the soil-filled support post to eat the paper shreds and create compost by way of their leavings.

Yes, it all seems very high-tech, but as you can see by paging down, older residents in the neighborhood still make composting mailboxes the old-fashioned way...

Composting mailbox turns junk mail into plant food: Kenny Be's Yard Arteology
Photo by Kenny Be

Figure 71b. Bear Valley: Old-school composting mailbox.

Even though the mailbox pictured above looks like it might be for the birds, it has been designed to compost junk mail. The shape of the door suggests that this mailbox successfully attracts letter carriers and regular deposits of junk mail. The plants growing from the top indicate that the junk mail inside is effectively decomposing and turning into fertile flower-growing soil. Additional pseudo-social-scientific speculation argues that this old-school composting mailbox system also creates enough extra energy to illuminate the decorative string of lights.

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