What to Know About Building Your Own Compost Pile at Home
Composting is the perfect way to replenish your garden with natural minerals and nutrients. It allows you to not only give back to the Earth, but to fertilize your garden without adding all those harmful chemicals. Here are some tips to help you get started.
What Not To Compost
What you don’t add to your compost pile is just as important as what you should add. One of the biggest things you want to avoid placing into your compost pile are fruit peels. Orange peels, banana peels, and peach peels may contain pesticides. Because it can be difficult to tell if any pesticides are on them, you should leave them out of your compost pile. Additionally, you want to avoid any meat, bones, or fish. These can attract pests and cause your compost to smell.
When composting, you need a balance of green and brown material. Green material consists of grass clippings, table scraps, and manure. The nitrogen you need for your compost is found in the green material. If you do choose to add grass clippings to your compost pile, it is important you make sure there are no chemicals on the grass clippings. This can cause your plants to become diseased.
Just as you need green material in your compost, you also need brown material. Brown materials often include paper products, straw, wood chips, ash, and hay. Make sure there is no ink on your paper products when placing them into your compost pile. Brown materials are important because they contain carbon and make the soil more nutrient rich.
Now that you know what types of products and materials can be composted, it is important to understand the mixture of these two. Because all products decompose at a different rate, you want to make sure you have an even weight of brown materials and green materials. While storing your compost, you want to keep the green materials on the bottom and a layer of brown material on the top to keep the flies and insects away. It also helps control the odor surrounding the compost. You can also visit your local Central Farm and Garden store to get some soil to help mix in with your compost if needed.
As the landfills fill up with recyclable materials, it is important to do your part in making the environment better. As you do this, you are also helping to condition your soil and help your plants grow healthier.