Are you looking to reduce your carbon footprint, recycle as much as you can, and benefit your lawn and garden? Composting at home may be for you! While there is a lot of information out there about composting, and as much misinformation, getting started on your own compost pile at home can be super simple.
Composting, by definition, is the decomposition of recycled organic materials (typically waste or garbage) into a soil additive or conditioner. The compost introduces an abundance of quality nutrients into your soil and helps plants grow and thrive.
The benefits of composting at home are many. First, it’s a good way to recycle. Most organic materials can be composted, and that includes things like paper and cardboard. While these things can often be recycled by your city’s waste management company, so many items are skipped or passed over and end up in the landfill anyway. Second, it’s a good way to reduce your garbage output. So many of your kitchen scraps can be composted, meaning you’ll be sending less and less to the landfill every day. Finally, it’s a perfect soil additive for your garden at home. Whether you have a vegetable garden or a gorgeous flower landscape out front – your plants will thank you.
Ready for a little science lesson? Composting requires four things to work properly: air, water, carbon, nitrogen. When these components are added together, they attract composters: bacteria, fungi, insects, and worms which eat away at the organic waste, which creates heat (the last component needed) and turn it into compost. Most of these composters are invisible to the eye and work silently – meaning you’ll never know they’re there. Regardless, if you want your compost to flourish, you’ll need to keep them happy with the right ingredients.
Deciding what to put into your compost bin or pile is the part where the Internet can be both helpful and not at all helpful. It’s a good idea to read up on several sources to help guide you into making the right decisions. If you’re unsure about a certain ingredient and can’t find any consistent answers online, it’s best to leave it out.
As I mentioned before, composters require carbon, nitrogen, water, and air to create compost.
Don’t Compost These:
Some things should never be composted due to the negative effects they will have on the composters or because they aren’t able to decompose.
When composting at home, you have a few options. You can make your own DIY compost bin, create a pile in the corner of your yard, or buy a pre-made bin online. Some people may be lucky enough to have the space to create an open compost pile which is great for the addition of natural water and air, but in the middle of the city, this is not always doable. The smell can sometimes be overwhelming (particularly if you use incorrect ingredients), and neighbors may complain!
Make your own:
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