The richest, most nutritious soil you could use in your garden or houseplants is the soil you can make by composting. Composting is an easy process that has many benefits, one being plants grow better and produce a higher yield, an important consideration for vegetable gardeners. Whether you choose a standard kitchen pail, or decide on a rotating compost bin, there are several options available to get the best fertilizer from your throw away food, leaves and grass. Find out how to make organic compost at home and start enjoying the benefits from doing so.
Your home life and the space you have to work with determine the kind of compost bin best for your needs. If you live in a small apartment and only plant a patio garden, a small bin that fits in your kitchen may work best. For larger areas, a tumbler or larger bin may be the best choice. One of the best ways to make organic compost is by using a composting toilet that will collect your waste, and help to provide a bathroom for hunting cabins or lodges that do not have plumbing. However, no matter what size bin you choose, getting together some initial supplies is always best, especially if you starting your mix.
Gathering Everything You Will Need
Many people pile leaves and grass cutting in a pile in their yards for making compost. However, placing these ingredients in a bin is best because of the heat decomposition creates, thus allowing your mix to decompose faster and more efficiently. Gathering these supplies for making your first compost mix is a good idea:
- Suitable bin
- Starter mix ( activators) for creating the most suitable carbon: nitrogen ratio)
- Composting guide book, usually sold everywhere composting supplies and bins are sold
- Brown materials like dead leaves, shredded paper, coffee grounds and filters, sawdust and straw
- Green materials like grass cuttings, leafy green vegetable scraps, tea leaves(minus the tea bag) and manure from herbivore animals like cows and rabbits
Outdoor bins that are not tumblers do well when you add your composting materials in layers. Doing so helps to evenly disperse decomposition heat and it promotes a healthier carbon and nitrogen ratio. If your mix has too much carbon and not enough nitrogen or vice verse, you could end up with a soupy mess or a mix filled with chunks of last month’s food scraps. In fact, most activators are high in nitrogen content for these reasons.
Materials To Never Put In Your Compost Bin
Some materials, even those from food sources, can ruin your compost. This is especially true about meats and fish, no matter if they are raw or cooked. meat and fish attract wild animals and also diseases that cause the entire area around your compost bin to be seriously unhealthy. Other items you should avoid adding to your mix are:
- Feces from carnivorous animals like dogs and cats
- Never put new or used cat litter in your mix
- Papers with glossy coatings like magazines and advertising circulars
- Charcoal and ash from the grill
The Finished Product
When you empty a compost bin, you know you have been successful if the results are a crumbly, blackish brown soil like material that smells like the earth. You can use compost for adding nutrients to your garden soil, simply turning it in before planting or adding around the base of plants after growth has already begun. Many people use compost mix in place of mulch while others use it around the base of trees, especially small saplings. Making the most of your gardening efforts starts with you learning how to make organic compost at home.