Category Archives: Compost

Why Compost

Why Compost?:

I have been gardening in one form or another for nearly twenty years. In those years, I haven’t always used compost, but during the ones that I did, I had a much more successful garden.

Why Compost

A freshly dug garden that doesn’t use compost might do well the first couple of years, but if you continue to not add nutrients to the soil you will see a sharp decline after the third year.

Your vegetables will be shorter, and they will die quicker than what they had in the past. This is because the nutrients in the soil have been used up, and the vegetables aren’t getting enough food to help them grow.

Adding compost to a garden will give your vegetables what they need to grow bigger and stronger.

why compost

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Artificial fertilizer may help, but I have never liked it. As much as I wash my vegetables, I just can’t get the idea out of my head that when I eat the vegetables from my garden, I am eating the chemicals that were sprayed on them as well. It is unnatural, and if nature intended us to use artificial fertilizer in our gardens, we would have artificial fertilizer trees. Also, the byproducts from artificial fertilizer factories can’t be doing much to help our environment.

I have bought bags of compost from the store. They cost anywhere from $2.50 to $6.50 per forty pound bag. A good sized garden can take up to 30 bags easily. This might not seem like a lot, but in today’s economy I’m looking to save money wherever I can. In fact, it’s one of the reasons I increased my garden size, to save money on food.

When you make your own compost, you are learning and gardening the way our ancestors did. It is the way that nature intended us to fertilize our crops, and you will get bigger and better vegetables from your garden, I guarantee it.

I love gardening. When I till the earth, plant seeds, and water the plants I can see the fruits of my labors springing up from the Earth. When the vegetables are ready to be eaten, it’s with a sense of pride they are prepared. Making a compost pile and adding it to your garden is an important part of the process. If you are using artificial fertilizer you are adding to our pollution problem, and if you are just buying fertilizer you are wasting money. If you are using no fertilizer at all you are draining the nutrients from your soil. Making your own compost pile just makes good sense.Why Compost? I hope we’ve answered that for you!

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All about Compost Pails
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What Can I Compost ?

What Can I Compost?:

Perhaps you are new to gardening and you have heard talk about compost. If you aren’t sure What to Compost, the answer is you can compost anything that used to be alive, animal or vegetable. Some things do make better compost than others, and some things can give you trouble that you might not have thought of before.

What Can I Compost - Easy Green Living

My first experience with compost came at my grand parent’s house when I was very young. They had a large bowl they would fill with uneaten portions of food, and food casings such as eggshells and banana peels. When the bowl became filled, grandpa would take it to an empty 55 gallon oil drum he had in his back yard, dump it, and put a lid over it. When spring came, he would empty the drum into where he wanted his garden. By this time, the contents of the drum looked like wet dirt.

There is a problem with composting uneaten food. If you don’t have a place to put it that can’t be sealed, don’t do it. The stench can get pretty bad, and you will have an abundance of flies on your land. It will also attract rodents. A few raccoons might be okay, but rats and mice carry fleas that can transmit diseases to humans. If you want to re-cycle your old food intocompost you need to use a Compost Pail, these are really good & allow you to also turn the contents without getting your hands dirty!.So what can I compost?

Leaves

Another thing he would do would be to rake leaves, put them where his garden was going to be, and then burn them. I remember dinner at my grand parent’s house would always have huge great tasting green beans, succulent tomatoes, and fried zucchini. There are many ways to Compost Leaves.

Newspapers

Leaves make excellent compost, and they don’t have to be burned. Wet, decaying leaves fill the soil with nutrients that will help your garden grow. Old newspaper is also something that decays pretty rapidly, but I would stay away from the magazines. They decay at about the same rate, but the colored ink that is used for the pictures is not good for your soil.

Old Wood

Old wood can be used for compost, but it decays at a very slow rate. The ashes from burned wood make for good compost. In the years before electric furnaces, people often dumped the ashes from the fireplace into the garden.

If you live in a town where burning wood is against a local ordinance, you can still use it for compost if you grind it up into dust.

This is different than mulch. Mulch is good to put around your plants to keep the weeds down, but for faster decay sawdust is the best.

Sewage

A neighbor of ours who worked in a sewage treatment plant would bring home sludge to fill in his garden. The stench was horrendous, but it worked. He had one of the best gardens in town.

I know that people who work at a sewage plant are only a small number of the population, but a good many of us have pets. Pet droppings believe it or not make great compost!.

When animals and vegetables die, they decay into the ground and provide nutrients for vegetation that is eaten by animals. It is part of the circle of life, and starting a compost pile is a good way to remember this.

If you ever find yourself asking the question, “What can I compost,” take a look at a list that someone has compiled over the years of 163 things You Can Compost. It is worth checking out if you are serious about composting.

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How To Compost

How to Compost:

I was lucky to have a grandfather who showed me the proper way to compost. I understand that some people might do it a bit differently, but over the years I have found that his way was good, and it works.

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In his back yard were two large 55 gallon oil drums. It was in these that he would keep his compost. It could be anything from coffee grounds, to teabags, or wood ashes and dead weeds. He had a large heavy metal lid for the drums, and this would keep insects out and it would discourage animals from getting into it. Sometimes when he opened the lid of the drum a strong stench would come from the inside of the barrel. For this reason, it’s important to keep the container you use a good distance away from your living quarters, but not close enough to the neighbors to annoy them.

You might not be able to get a hold of a 55 gallon drum, but what’s important is that you have a container to keep your compost in. Your compost container should have a lid that serves a multi-purpose; keeping the smell down, keeping insects to a minimum, and keeping rodents out of your compost.

What Can You Compost?

You can compost almost anything animal or vegetable. Uneaten food, coffee grounds, eggshells, leaves, and newspaper are all compostable.

If you are going to compost uneaten food in your house, use a small bowl to keep it in. You don’t want to have a big bowl that takes a while to fill because you don’t want the odor of decaying food in your home. Having a lid for this bowl will also be a big help in keeping odors and insects to a minimum. If you have pets you also want to keep a curious cat or dog out of it. Once a day, take the contents of the bowl and empty it into your outside compost container.

Things like grass, leaves, and weeds are easy. If you have a lawn mower bag, you can simply empty the grass into the container or spread it over your garden if it’s an off growing season. A problem with spreading grass in your garden is that some of the grass will contain seeds which will take root and fill your garden. If you don’t mind dealing with this the next time you till, feel free to go ahead and compost this way. Leaves and weeds are done pretty much the same way. Fill them in your container or spread them evenly throughout your garden.

When it’s time to sow your garden, spread the compost evenly throughout your garden, then till it into your soil. This will give the earth in your garden the rich nutrients that plants thrive on. Good luck with your gardening this year, and I hope it does well!

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Compost Pile

Compost Pile - Easy Green LivingCompost Pile - Easy Green LivingCompost Pile - Easy Green LivingCompost Pile - Easy Green Living

Compost Pile Definition: Composting is the purposeful bio degradation of organic matter, such as yard and food waste.

The decomposition is performed by micro-organisms, mostly bacteria, but also yeasts and fungi.[1] In low temperature phases a number of macro-organisms, such as spring tails, ants, nematodes, isopods and earthworms also contribute to the process, as well as soldier fly, fruit flies and fungus gnats. There are a wide range of organisms in the decomposer community. [2]Taken from Wikipedia.org

Importance Of Composting

1. Makes kitchen and yard waste into a ground humus like matter that restores nutrients to the soil. Which is paramount to plant nutrition. 2. Reduces the amount of green waste going into landfills.3. Helps your Eco Friendly Garden garden grow to its potential.

Compost Pile

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All About Composting……..

1. Why Compost – The importance of using our kitchen and yard scraps to make nutrient rich soil. 2. How To Compost – Wonder where to start? Information on how to compost and what you can compost. 3. What Can I Compost – If you have ever wondered about what to place in your compost pile this article is for you. Everything from wood to pet droppings will do the trick.4. Compost leaves – The natural process of leaf decomposition can be of value to your garden. Learn how to make the best compost out of your leaves.5. Compost Pails – Buy yourself a cheap compost pail that you can use in the kitchen before transferring to your garden compost bin or pile.6. Compost Bin Designs – Check out the various compost bin designs available.

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Compost Pails

Compost Pails – Buy Yourself a Cheap Compost Bin

Have you ever wondered what people did with their garbage 300 years ago? Back in those times, there was no weekly garbage pickup, and no recycling centers to take the garbage to. Of Course, there were no pop cans, plastic containers and the like.

No, folks back in those times were more efficient with their living by products. If there was any waste paper, it was burned for heat. Old clothes were handed down, or used to make new clothes, and waste food products were stored in a cheap compost bin usually made from wood, and used as fertilizer for farming.

While the technological advances we have made since those times have made our lives more comfortable than our ancestors, the downside is that they leave us with just too much crap. Over the years, man has come up with different and more efficient ways to get rid of our useless junk. After a while, people started throwing away things they used to compost, mostly for convenience. Eventually this led to most people forgetting how to compost. Don’t worry; it is really easy to do.

bamboo compost pail

If you are planning on starting a compost pile, the first thing you need to do is get a good kitchen compost pail. The best kind that you can get is one with a sealed lid, so you don’t attract rodents and insects, and a sealed lid will keep the decaying smells out of your kitchen.

I also recommend getting a smaller sized kitchen compost pail, unless you own a restaurant you aren’t going to want uneaten food portions sitting inside your house for weeks at a time. A smaller kitchen compost container will need to be changed more often than a larger one, and you are going to want to do most of your composting outside.

A good garden hose is also important. Plastic trash can liners do not compost, but you can use brown paper bags that do. However, I don’t recommend this because uneaten food will get moist as it decays, and paper bags will leak. What I recommend is not using a liner at all, and thoroughly cleaning your kitchen compost container with a garden hose after emptying your compost into a cheap compost bin in your backyard.

If you have a large backyard, keep your compost bin as far away from your house as possible. An enclosed bin with a lid is the most preferred. An open bin will attract wildlife to your property, including rodents. When the time comes, spread the compost in your garden, and you will have scrumptious vegetables come harvest time.

So What are the Best Compost Pails Available?

There are a few questions you may need to ask yourself before purchasing or making compost pails or bins. How much space do you have in your backyard for a compost bin? How much compost will you be producing?

Let’s take a look at the different bins available for those who are “green” composters and for those avid seasoned composting individuals.

Plastic Compost Bins

Of course always look for plastic compost bins that are made of 100% recycled material! Plastic compost pails tend to be smaller in size and ideal for those who wish to compost leaves and some of their food.

I love that the plastic compost bins have a locking lid that keeps out unwanted visitors and they are widely available to purchase at any gardening/hardware store. There is a downside to plastic compost bins. Because of the plastic sides they tend to lack air circulation.

My Favorite Plastic Compost Container

Homemade Compost Bins

Believe it or not these have better air circulation than other compost bins you can purchase at the store. It is quite easy to turn the material and most homemade bins are large and store plenty of material.

The only downside to homemade bins is the time it takes to build one and that rodents have easy access to these open bins. To solve this problem, use a plastic container for kitchen scraps and your homemade bin for backyard compost.

If you are looking to save some money this is a great way to have a compost bin for cheap.

How To Build A Compost Bin

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Compost Leaves

The Best Way to Compost Leaves

Fall comes, and a leaf falls from the tree. It lies on the ground underneath the tree, turning from orange and red to brown and eventually black. After turning black, the leaf decays and becomes part of the ground that surrounds the tree. Over time, the decayed leaf sinks into the ground and is absorbed by the tree through its roots. The leaf then comes to life again in the form of a new leaf.

Compost is not something that was invented by humans. If fact, it was around long before man ever walked the Earth. It is part of the natural cycle of death and rebirth. If you are new to gardening, and you would like to know the best way to compost leaf litter, read on.

compost leaves

How To Compost Leaves

First off, the leaves aren’t going to get to the garden on their own. They will need to be raked and transported to the garden. You could simply dump the leaves whole in the garden, but they may blow away and whole leaves can take some time to decompose.

If you have a wood chipper, mulch the leaves into tiny pieces. This can also be done with a lawnmower with a side bag. Once you have your leaves in tiny pieces, rake them throughout the garden.

If you don’t have a wood chipper or a lawn mower with a side bag, you can still compost the leaves. Just make sure they stay wet. Wet leaves will decompose at a much faster rate than dry ones. Burying the leaves in the dirt, or tilling them into the garden with a tiller should work in principle, but the leaves can clog up the tiller blades. You don’t want to have too many leaves in one spot in the garden; they need to be spread out evenly.

Another option is to burn the leaves and spread the ash. Never do this on a windy day, or on a day that exceptionally dry. It’s best to do this with a fire pit that has a screen attached to it, because burning leaves have a tendency to want to spread. Always do this with a water hose or a fire extinguisher nearby.

You will find that leaves make excellent compost, and your garden will grow bigger and your vegetables will be tastier when you use the leaves as compost.

Video On Composting Leaves

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