Compost is an easy, natural, and nutrient rich soil that even new gardeners can make. With this beginners guide to composting, you can start composting right away! You can use kitchen leftovers, grass clippings, branches from your trees, or even dead leaves! Just add water and oxygen. You can make it in any container or even a pile in your yard.
We’ve been composting off an on for a few years now, but we’re by no means master composters here. I feel like it’s a great thing to involve the kids in, and teach them that we don’t just throw everything away. If you’ve been around here for a bit, you’ll know that we try to avoid contributing to landfills when we can.
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Choose a Container (or pile) that is Easy to Access
Make sure that wherever you choose to build your compost, it is easy to access. You will need to maintain your compost year round, so be aware of this when choosing your location. For instance, during the colder months, you might not want to venture outside whenever you have something to add to your compost. If you live in an apartment, you may need a small kitchen composter (like this).
Our compost isn’t in the most accessible of locations (back behind our shed), but we’ve worked around that. For awhile we kept a bucket on the back porch to collect our compostables, but we found that was more of a hassle. More recently, we’ve been putting fruit and veggie scraps into the freezer until we can take them out.
Know the Mixture
When you are starting your compost, layer the materials or mix them together. You will need more brown material than green when making your compost. Green material are items such as fruits or vegetable remnants or grass clippings. Brown material are things such as leaves, branches, or coffee grounds.
Rotate or Mix your Compost Every Few Days
Rotating is one of the most important components of composting as it ensures oxygen is introduced to all the areas of your compost. Rotating your compost will help accelerate the breakdown process of bacterium which is necessary to create a good compost.
Make Sure your Container is Moist
You need to make sure you can easily access your compost pile to also ensure that it is moist enough. It needs to be moist, but not too wet. If your compost feels too dry, pour water and add some green materials to moisten it. If it is too moist, add some brown materials or rotate it.
Composting is an excellent way to recycle natural materials around your home and get the benefit of free nutrient rich soil without running to the store. Composting doesn’t require a lot of work and can be an amazing help to your plants and flowers.