If you’re looking for a way to make use of all of those holiday leftovers going bad in your fridge, or perhaps seeking to start a new project in the new year, how about composting? It adds nutrients to your lawn and garden, helps protect your ground, and introduces healthy organisms to the soil. It also lets you make use of waste instead of throwing it out or shoving it down the sink and possibly clogging up your pipes!
Here are some tips to help you get started:
- Use a container with a lid or a specific compost pail and keep it under the sink for your kitchen waste. Leaves and grass clippings are also great for compost.
- Start your compost pile on bare earth. Then lay a few inches of twigs. Add the compost materials in layers, alternating the moist and the dry materials. Food scraps are moist ingredients and leaves, wood ashes, etc. are dry materials.
- Keep in mind the pile should have both carbon matter and nitrogen matter. Carbon matter should be the larger group. This includes branches, dried leaves, bits of wood, coffee filters, egg shells, straw, etc. Nitrogen matter includes food scraps and lawn clippings, green leaves.
- It is a good idea to add manure to activate the compost pile and speed up the process.
- Keep the pile moist and cover it with wood, plastic sheeting, or even old carpet pieces. This will help to keep in the moisture and heat and to prevent it from being over-watered when it rains. (The ideal is moist but not soaked.)
- Every few weeks turn the pile with a shovel to aerate it.
- Whenever you add in new materials, mix them in instead of adding them in layers. You can also purchase a composter. A rotating composter makes the process very easy.
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