Composting for Beginners
We cannot recommend composting enough! It’s simple to start and will do wonders to your garden.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- A container- either a bucket, tub, or a store bought compost container. (Something that you don’t mind using)
- A drill
When it comes to what to put inside your compost container, the possibilities are endless!
The main components to a compost pile are:
- Food scraps
- Grass clippings
- recyclable paper materials
Compost bins are perfect for food scraps like fruit/veggie peels, leftover parts not used to cook a meal, or even the fruits/veggies you bought at a store, forgot to use and now they’ve gone bad! Throw these items in your compost bin and now they have served a purpose!
Guilt = gone!
You can even throw in your coffee grounds that usually get thrown in the trash!
The main goal of a compost pile is to rot the items inside of it. Pretty gross, but that’s how the cookie crumbles. How do you make something go rotten? Heat and moisture and air flow.
Adding dirt is the base layer of your compost pile. The dirt already has microorganisms that will help break down the new stuff you add in. The food scraps are the nutrients that will be absorbed by the soil--the grass clippings too! Adding shredded paper (printer paper or newspaper) is a great source of carbon to your compost pile and will help with the decomposition. Make sure the paper isn’t glossy or has any colored ink, since that isn’t natural and can be a bit toxic.
The paper and cardboard can create insulation and helps absorb moisture when your compost pile gets too moist!
Why worms you might ask? Worms are the decomposers. They’ll eat the food scraps and their poop is one of the greatest sources of nutrients! Warning: Your pile will attract flies, in turn creating maggots… but they are a key component to compost, as well!
Add your goodies mentioned above to your container, then add to it as you see fit! Make sure to mix it around, add water and keep some insulation to increase the decomposition!
**If you do choose to make your compost in a bin with a lid, add holes to the sides and top to aid in air circulation! (That’s where the drill comes in) Especially if there’s worms in there, they’ll need air to survive.
Here’s a list of things you didn’t know you CAN compost:
- Egg shells
- Pet hair
- Dryer lint
- Cotton balls (as long as there isn’t any toxic liquid on them) they must be 100% cotton and 100% compostable-- same with cotton swabs!
- Tea bags, with the tea! And coffee filters with the cotton grinds!
- Toothpicks/popsicle sticks
- Fireplace ashes
- Plants you’ve accidentally killed
- Plants that are done harvesting and time to get pulled out
The list goes on! A simple google search and there's so much! Best of luck!