How to Create a Compost

compost

A compost is created by decomposing organic materials, turning them into organic and inorganic compounds. The process of composting consists of recycling organic materials that are considered as waste products. If you have a good compost, it will be rich in plant nutrients and favourable organisms. If you’re interested in making your own compost, here are the steps you can follow.

What to compost

If you’re new to composting, you might not know what to add to your compost bin. If this is the case, here are is a long list of materials you can add.

  • Fruit scraps
  • Vegetable scraps
  • Coffee grounds
  • Eggshells (this may take a while to break down)
  • Grass and plant clippings
  • Wood and bark that are finely chopped
  • Dry leaves
  • Tea bags

The following list outlines waste rich in carbon. In other words, brown materials.

  • Paper bags
  • Paper towels
  • Pet bedding
  • Sawdust (this has to be from untreated wood)
  • Straw
  • Cardboard
  • Shredded paper or newspaper

However, it’s also important not to add any materials that are detrimental to your compost. The following list are materials you shouldn’t add.

  • Autumn leaves
  • Cat or dog faeces
  • Ash made from coal fires
  • Gloss or colour-printed paper
  • Dairy
  • Raw meat
  • Citrus
  • Cooked food
  • Perennial weeds
  • Diseased plants

Ensure you have all the necessary equipment

The next step is to make sure that you have all the necessary equipment. The tools you will need are:

  • A compost bin
  • A mix of nitrogen and carbon rich waste (read the list above)
  • An area of your garden that is in direct sunlight
  • A garden fork

Compost green and brown materials

Once you’ve completed checking whether you have all the right tools, the next step you should do is to compost the green and brown materials listed. Before you do this, make sure you first place your compost bin on the soil. You should also ensure that there are worms and other micro-organisms present since they will speed up the process. To keep rodents out, install chicken wire at the base. You should then add a mix of the green and brown materials.

Turn the compost

Turning your compost will speed up the composting process. To do this, make sure you utilise a garden fork to aerate the pile. Aerating is a process that introduces air into a material. You can aerate your compost by mixing the outside ingredients to the inside. Once this is done, it’s important to put a cover on top of your bin in order to protect it during rainy days.

Ensure that the mixture is brown

To determine whether the process is complete, check to see if the mixture is brown, crumbly and has a sweet smell. The completion of the process will usually take about 6 months if the pile is turned on a regular basis. However, this can also take a long time.

 

These are the steps you can follow to create your own compost. However, if you need help or for any enquiries, don’t hesitate to contact any of our gardening services from our list here. If you plan to prune your plants, our article on How to Prune Plants might be helpful.

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