Archive for July 19th, 2010

The In’s and Out’s of Composting

Three Reasons To Compost at Home: 

1) Composting at home for just one year can save global warming gases equivalent to all the CO2 your kettle produces annually, or your washing machine produces in three months. 

2) When waste is sent to a landfill, air cannot get to the organic waste. Therefore, as the waste breaks down it creates a harmful greenhouse gas, methane, which damages the Earth’s atmosphere.

3) Compost is a nutrient-rich food for plants that will provide your garden with improved soil structure and balanced soil structure, while maintaining moisture levels and suppressing plant disease. 

How to Compost at Home: 

Ideally, place your compost bin on soil in a sunny area. The sun will help to speed up the composting process and the soil will allow access for beneficial microbes and insects as well as help with aeration and drainage.

What can you put in your bin? An easy rule of thumb is anything GREEN or BROWN

GREENS

  • Tea Bags
  • Grass Cuttings
  • Vegetable Peelings, Fruit Scraps, and Salad Leaves
  • Old Flowers
  • Young Annual Weeds

BROWNS

  • Coffee Grounds and Filter Paper
  • Cardboard
  • Egg Cartons
  • Scrunched-Up Paper (not exactly brown, but you get the idea)
  • Fallen Leaves
  • Sawdust 
  • Twigs, Branches, and Bark

DO NOT COMPOST…

  • Meat
  • Cooked Vegetables
  • Dairy Products
  • Diseased Plants
  • Perennial Weeds or Weeds with Seed Heads
  • Animal Feces (although some people would disagree, avoiding adding this to your compost will help keep the smell down)

It can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months for the compost to completely decompose. It really just depends on what you have added to your bin. But once it has, you have created a natural, organic food that will help your garden flourish without the cost and helped to prevent your waste from harming the environment.

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