A compost pile is an essential part of your garden. Compost serves as a conditioner and fertilizer to your soil. It feeds on the “good” microorganisms in the soil that help your plants stay healthy and full of nutrients. In addition to this, compost in your garden helps sandy soil hold water better, while it aids in draining water from clay soil.
Advantages of Making Compost
Compost serves as a natural protection and enhancement to your soil. If you want your garden to be rich, flourishing, and healthy, this is definitely something to consider. It improves the overall texture, structure, and aeration of the soil, helping it breathe and hold water better.
Unlike commercial fertilizers, compost is natural, organic, and good for the environment. It is also relatively cheap and can easily be produced. You can make compost without having to spend a single buck. As for your plants, compost helps in stimulating the development of their roots. It feeds the microorganisms in the soil that keep it healthy, rich, and in balanced condition.
During this process, natural substances like potassium, phosphorus, and nitrogen are produced, eliminating the need of adding many artificial soil amendments. The significance of making and using compost is all about helping the environment and reducing organic waste from our kitchens and yards.
If you can only exert a little time and effort to gather all these materials and use them appropriately for composting, then you can definitely contribute in solving some of our environmental problems. You can help make a difference by composting. Not only can you improve and enrich the soil in your garden, you can also help get rid of harmful waste in the environment.
Once you’ve decided to improve your garden, help the environment, and make your own compost, here are the guidelines that you need to keep in mind:
1. Do not throw or give away your kitchen waste
Junks, scraps, and other unwanted leftovers from your kitchen can be included in your compost pile.
Keep them as they can be useful once you are ready to make your compost.
Kitchen waste and scraps are highly composed of nitrogen that helps in heating up your compost pile and speeding up the entire process.
Some of the materials that you may want to save from the trash can include egg shells, vegetable stems, fruit peels, and coffee grounds to name some.
2. Size does matter
When it comes to making a compost pile for your garden, the bigger it is, the better outcome you’ll get as heat will build up better with a large pile. However, keep the height limit of your compost pile to three by three feet only.
Anything larger than this might be difficult to manage. Choose a site where you will make your compost pile.
Make sure that it is easily accessible to you, but at a significant distance from your home or garden to avoid any accidents.
3. If heat is important, moisture is just as important as well
Make sure your compost pile will not dry out completely due to the heat. To guarantee this, keep watering or moisturizing your compost to sustain the process.
On the other hand, however, do not keep your pile too wet. This will cause your compost to stink and get squelchy, which might harm your garden more than enhancing it.
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4. Make sure that your compost is well-ventilated
To help you maintain this condition, use a tumbling composter and make sure to turn it every time you add a new material on your pile.
If, however, a tumbling composter is unavailable and you have to use a static compost bin instead, make sure that you mix the materials well so that oxygen can circulate and help break down the contents effectively.
5. Keep a good balance of the materials you include in your compost.
Make sure there is an equal percentage of leaves, grass clippings, kitchen scraps, leftover foods, and others. Having too much of one material and too little of the other can throw your pile of balance.
The two most common elements present in composts are green materials and brown materials. Green materials include leaves, grass clippings, and even old annuals.
They are high in nitrogen. Brown materials, on the other hand, may include dry leaves, and are high in carbon. Adding too many greens or browns may not normalize the mixture of nitrogen and carbon in your pile.
Remember, what you want is to create an alternative fertilizer that provides a good balance of the important substances like nitrogen and potassium.Hence, make sure that you include significant amounts of varying wastes and materials.
Finally, stay away from materials like meats, animal waste, oils, diseased plants, and those that have been treated with herbicides or pesticides. Do not add them to your compost as they will harm not only the soil, but the health of your plants, as well.
Making compost is more than just beautifying or improving your garden. More importantly, it helps in keeping the environment safe and healthy to live in.
Take time and exert effort in making compost instead of using artificial fertilizers for your plants. This way, not only can you get rid of your organic waste properly, but you can also improve the quality of your garden and soil.