You may have heard that compost can be beneficial for your garden and that composting is an environmentally smart way to use household and natural waste. If the soil in your garden is lacking essential nutrients, you probably have discovered that it is difficult to grow healthy crops. Why not test your composting abilities to determine if your efforts will improve the soil's quality and result in a large bounty of fresh vegetables?
Create A List Of Materials
Creating a list of items that can be added to the composting bin will prevent you or one of your family members from accidentally adding items that will not decompose at a standard rate or that will emit foul odors that will be difficult to deal with.
Add organic food materials to your list, such as coffee grinds, egg shells, and vegetable or fruit peels. Include 'green' materials that are found outdoors, including grass clippings and leaves. Lastly, add 'brown' materials, such as paper products and wood pieces. Animal products and items that have been treated chemically should never be added to your compost bin.
Prepare And Fill Your Composting Bin
Nitrogen and carbon are needed to break down the components in a compost pile. Nitrogen is emitted from materials such as grass clippings, leaves, and organic food scraps. Carbon is released from what is considered 'brown' materials, including cardboard, wood chips, and mulch. Buy a bin that is waterproof and that has a lid. The bin should be stored outdoors and should be located in an area that will receive plenty of sunlight.
Because composting materials should remain damp, but not saturated, you will need to secure the lid to the bin on rainy days. The main objective is to add thin layers of green and brown materials and to stir the components in the bin on occasion. When materials are shifted, oxygen will be increased and assist with the decomposition phase. A water hose can be used to dampen the compost supply as needed.
Tend To The Compost Supply
If you don't want to deal with the hassle of adding scraps to the bin on a daily basis, you can collect materials at your leisure and store them in a smaller container. After the smaller container is full, transfer the items to the composting bin.
Be aware that thick materials will take longer to decompose than thinner items. For this reason, you may want to shred paper or break down pieces of wood and cardboard before placing the materials inside of the bin. After several weeks, the compost will be an earthy tone and will have a consistent texture. Add shovelfuls of the compost to your garden and spread the material out evenly.
If you don't want to create your own compost, you can obtain compost from local landscaping companies or plant nurseries.