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The City of Cambridge was incorporated in 1973, when the three municipalities of Galt, Preston and Hespeler and the settlement of Blair were amalgamated into a single legal entity under a new name. (A new name that was not very new as Preston was once known as Cambridge Mills.) Each of the communities possessed a long and proud history and there was considerable resistance among the local population to this "shotgun marriage" arranged by the Provincial government. A healthy sense of rivalry had always governed relations among our three communities. Even today, while our residents will tell the outside world that they call Cambridge home, they will often identify themselves to each other as citizens of Galt or Preston or Hespeler. While the original communities have come together well in the years since amalgamation, they began life apart and as a result Cambridge is blessed with not one but three historic core commercial areas to preserve for future generations. As Cambridge has developed the open spaces between the original municipalities have been filled in a fourth commercial core.

Today, Cambridge is a thriving emerging and modern city with a diverse population of more than 125,000. It is located within the Regional Municipality of Waterloo and is apart of one of Ontario's fastest growing and economically prosperous regions. With its perfect position being located along Highway 401, only 45 minutes from the provincial capital of Toronto, Cambridge is well poised to continue to grow and flourish into a prosperous metropolis and one of the best places to live in the Province of Ontario.   www.cambridge.ca

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Compost is part of the circle of life in gardens

garden compost The season for fresh fruits and vegetables grown right in the backyard is upon us. Warm weather breathes life into fresh berries, tomatoes, eggplant, cucumbers, and many other delectable fruits and vegetables.

Home gardens can be supplemented with delicious finds from the supermarket or farmer's market, including melons, corn and more.

The bounty of the garden can be made more abundant and fruitful with the addition of the right soil amendments. Compost is a key element of rich, nutritious soil. Scraps from items that have been grown in the garden can then be reused in the production of the compost that feeds that same garden. It's a continuous circle of garden life.

Getting started with compost is relatively easy. Homeowners should choose an outdoor space near the garden but far away from the home so that it won't be disturbed by kids or animals. Some people opt for an open compost pile, while others choose closed bins to contain the possible smell and to camouflage the compost. A sunny spot will help the compost to develop faster, according to Good Housekeeping.

The next step is to start gathering the scraps and materials that will go into the compost. Better Homes and Gardens suggests keeping a bucket or bin in the kitchen to accumulate kitchen scraps. Here are some kitchen-related items that can go into the compost material:

  • Eggshells
  • Fruit peels
  • Vegetable peels and scraps
  • Coffee grounds
  • Shredded newspaper
In addition to these materials, grass and plant clippings, dry leaves, bark chips, straw, and sawdust from untreated wood can go into the pile. Avoid diseased plants, anything with animal fats, dairy products, and pet feces.

A low-maintenance pile has an equal amount of brown and green plant matter in the compost plus moisture to keep the bacteria growing and eating at the right rate. Aerating the compost occasionally, or turning the bin when possible, will allow the compost to blend and work together. read more storiesCompost will take a few months to form completely, says the Planet Natural Research Center. The finished product will resemble a dark, crumbly soil that smells like fresh earth.

Compost will not only add nutrients to garden soil, but also it can help insulate plants and may prevent some weed growth. It is a good idea to start a compost pile as a free source of nutrition for plants and a method to reduce food waste in an environmentally sound way.