May 29th is Learn About Composting Day. Compost is a nutrient-rich organic matter that helps enrich the soil. If you have a garden, introducing compost to your soil can significantly benefit your plants and soil. Composting also helps reduce your carbon footprint by reusing organic materials that would otherwise be thrown away. Compost can be made from a variety of items found in your kitchen.
Here is how to make compost:
Don’t Throw That Away
Organic waste from your kitchen, which you might typically throw away, is the best source to create your compost. You can begin by using a small metal trash can with a lid.
Items to use in your compost can include:
- Coffee Grounds
- Banana Peels
- Avocado Skins
- Grass Clippings
- Lemon rinds
- Non-waxed paper; Newspaper, printer paper, etc.
How Long Does It Take
The speed in which your compost becomes mature and is ready to use varies upon how you care for it. Compost can take anywhere from a few months up to a year to fully mature.
You can speed up this process using these tips:
Turn the compost– Turning your compost helps improve aeration so that the material will decompose faster. Many people use a tumbler for this, but you can just turn the compost manually by using a shovel or gardening fork. Do this every 3-7 days.
Use Smaller Materials– Before placing a whole broccoli crown or one sheet of newspaper, try to reduce its size. Cut vegetable waste into smaller pieces and shred or rip the paper into small bits. This will help accelerate decomposition.
Hot Composting– Heat helps the compost mature faster. To help aid it’s progression, place your compost bin in direct sunlight.
With these tips, you can create your own compost to add to the soil for your growing garden!