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! This infographic will show you how you can spoil your garden soil rotten by showing you how to make and use compost. This is truly something every homesteader must know!
Spoil Your Garden Rotten With Homemade Compost
What is compost?
A great way to recycle unwanted organic materials and turn them into nutrient-rich soil for your garden.
How does compost work?
Microbes thrive on the heat, moisture and oxygen in your compost pile and work hard eating and reproducing, which turn the organic matter into soil for the garden, chock-full of nutrients!
What you need to make compost:
- Minimum pile size: 3 foot cubed pile on ground or in container
- 1 part fresh green materials
- 2 parts dry brown materials
- Oxygen and water
What to put in:
- Fresh greens (nitrogen)
- Kitchen veggie and fruit scraps
- Nutshells, eggshells, corncobs
- Yard scraps: grass clippings, weeds, spent plants
- Coffee grounds, coffee filters, and tea bags
- Pet hair
- Dirt and dust from the dustpan or vacuum
- Manure and animal bedding (from herbivores)
- Dry browns (carbon)
- Dead leaves
- Hay and straw
- Wood shavings and sawdust
- Wood ash
- Shredded paper, cardboard, napkins, paper towels, junk mail
- Natural fibers such as wool and cotton (shredded)
What to leave out:
- Meat and bones
- Dairy products
- Manure from carnivores
- Oily and fatty food
- Diseased plants
Step 1: Stir it up!
Turn and mix the compost once weekly to aerate the pile. This distributes the contents evenly and keeps the microbes happy by giving them much needed oxygen.
More turning = faster compost!
Step 2: Water it!
Add just enough water so the compost feels like a moist sponge. Too much or too little water will slow down the process.
Too Much: Water pooling or leaking, pile lacks necessary oxygen to break down; fix by turning the pile frequently.
Too Little: Pile is dry and dusty, compost process slows down or stops; fix by adding enough water to moisten the whole pile.
Step 3: Use it!
The compost is finished when all identifiable materials have turned into black, crumbly soil. Use it up and start all over again to make more!
- Side-dress your plants: Place a ring of compost around each plant then water. The nutrients will seep into the soil, feeding the plants.
- Till it into the soil: Mix compost into the soil at the beginning of the gardening season to feed your garden plants.
- Give potting soil a boost: Mix a few cups of compost into potting soil before repotting plants to give them an extra boost of nutrients.
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