Monday, May 23, 2011

Why composting is great

First lets talk about 5 reasons why composting is a good idea:

1. Reduces waste. Why throw away compostable items when you don't have to? Composting reduces the amount of trash you and your family produce.

2. Saves money. When you compost you spend less on fertilizer, water and pesticides for your garden. Your garden will also produce more which saves you money on food.

3. Its good for your soil. Compost is a natural fertilizer and enriches soil increasing its nutrient content, which makes for healthier happier plants in your garden.

4. Its easy. It takes minimal effort, so why not compost?

5. It saves water. Compost helps lock moisture into the soil reducing your need to water your garden.

It works if you live in a city apartment with a small compost bin like the one shown below, or if you prefer country living and have room for a whole pile of compost in the backyard.

Now here's HOW to compost:

Using the materials listed below, alternate layers of brown and green items in your compost bin. Begin your compost bin or pile with brown materials. Water each layer of compost before adding the next layer so that it is damp like a wet sponge. Start with a ratio of 1:1 and adjust as necessary. (see below)

Stir at least once a week and in a few weeks you will be treating your plants to some lovely compost.

You know you need to adjust your ratio of green and brown material if your compost begins to smell. Healthy, well balanced compost does not smell. Once adjusted the smell should disappear in just a few days.

Ammonia smell: There is too much green material in your compost. Fix this by adding more brown material. If you compost in a bin, leave the lid off for a day or two to allow it to dry out.

Rotten garbage smell: Your compost is too wet and is not decomposing properly. If your compost is in a bin, leave the lid off for a day or two to allow it to dry out. You can also add more dry material like newspaper.

If you live in a wet, rainy area like I do, you may want to compost in a bin with a lid or else somewhere with a roof so you can have a little control over how much water your compost gets.

Happy gardening friends!

Info found here.

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