Want to know how to compost? Your homesteading guide for How To Compost starts here.
How To Compost | Homesteading Compost Guide
Your garden will never really reach its full potential until you give it everything it needs. And what does your garden need? Compost, of course!
What is compost made of?
Compost is decomposed organic material that’s rich in nutrients for garden soil. It’s essentially broken down kitchen scraps and brown waste such as paper and cardboard.
How Does It Work?
Microbes in the soil eat and reproduce as they feast on the warm, moist, and oxygen-rich soil. They turn all the organic matter into the soil.
How to Make Compost:
- About 3 feet of space (in a container or in a pile)
- water & oxygen
- 2 parts dry brown materials
- 1 part green materials
What to put in:
Green Materials (Nitrogen)
- Kitchen scraps like unused veggies and fruits
- Shells from nuts and eggs
- Coffee grounds and organic tea bags
- Garden scraps like weeds, old plants, and grass clippings
- Pet hair
- Dirt and dust from dustpan/vacuum
Brown Materials Carbon)
- Shredded paper and cardboard
- Napkins, paper towels
- Junk mail and newspaper
- Sawdust and wood shavings
- Dead leaves, straw, and hay
- Natural fibers like wool and cotton (cut into strips)
What to avoid:
- animal bones and meat
- shiny or glossy paper
- plants that are diseased
- anything oily or fatty or with oily/fatty residue
Step 1: Aerate
Mix and turn the compost once a week to aerate the mixture. This helps distribute the contents evenly and gives the microbes fresh oxygen.
Step 2: Water
The compost should feel like a moist sponge. Any more or less and the composting process will be slowed down.
Step 3: Use it!
Once all identifiable organic matter has turned to healthy dark-brown soil, the compost is ready! Add it to the garden and feed plants with nutrient-rich homemade compost. Here are some tips:
- Boost potting soil: Add compost to potting soil when you pot plants for a nutrient boost.
- Till into soil: Mix compost into the soil at the beginning of every planting season.
- Side-dress pants: Add a ring of compost around plants before watering. The water will help carry the nutrients into the plants.
Don’t forget to download, save, or share this handy infographic for reference:
Are you going to try these composting tips? Let us know below in the comments!
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Need more tips on composting? Get more here:
- A Homesteader’s Guide to Composting | How To Compost Tutorial
- How To Make Compost
- How To Make a Kitchen Compost Bin | Homesteading Tips
- Vermicomposting | Fertilize With Worm Castings