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Why Composting is Worth the Effortfrom: Lawn and Garden Magic
Organic gardeners know that compost works wonders in their garden. However, for those just starting their first garden, creating a compost pile isn't usually at the top of their to-do list. When deciding if the time and energy required for composting is worth the effort, they often decide they don't have time to make their own compost and settle for commercially available organic fertilizers.
To understand why composting is worthwhile, it's important to know exactly what it is. Composting is the process of decomposing organic wastes. This can consist of household waste or plant remains or a mixture of each, and composting makes them into a dark, earthy and loose or crumbly substance. Since compost is rich in minerals, something most plants need, it can even replace your garden soil.
However, most gardeners utilize compost to enrich their garden soil. By adding compost to the soil, the overall structure of the soil is improved, thus allowing it to hold more water and letting air circulate within the soil.
Contrary to some perceptions, compost is easy to make and is quite easy to use. There are a number of ways to create compost. Here's a quick guide that explains how easy it is to create compost in your backyard.
It's a good idea to make a compost bin so that everything is confined to one place. This way you'll avoid making a mess in your backyard. In addition, temperature and moisture can be regulated if you construct a compost bin, while allowing the organic materials being composted to touch the soil. Allow earthworm buddies and other organic microbes to help out with the decomposing process.
Although almost any organic material can go into your compost pile, a good combination of "greens" and "browns" is a better option. "Greens" are nitrogen-rich organic matter, such as fresh grass, leaves, and your kitchen scraps. "Browns", refer to organic matter that contains a lot of carbon, such as the dried leaves in your backyard, straw and wood chips or shavings.
A good combination of "greens" and "browns" often dictates how fast you'll have a finished compost. You'll certainly have an edge if you have some experience in compost making. Why? To begin with, you've probably timed how fast the final compost is created from different proportions of "greens" and "browns".
There are those, however, who say that the best proportion is 25% of your compost pile be made of "browns" and 1% be made of "greens." It should be noted that if you have a large part made up of "browns" the compost pile will decompose quite slowly. However, if you have too much made of "greens" your pile will likely get seriously smelly.
Other elements to always consider when making compost are the air and the amount of water your pile is going to require. It's best to keep your compost pile damp to help the decomposing process. You also need air, so make sure your pile is properly aerated. If you notice that no air is coming in, just turn your pile over. Observe and constantly aerate your compost pile regularly until it's ready to be harvested.
There is some effort required to create a compost pile, however, the results of composting will make a major difference to the success of your garden.
Composting Leaves News
Yard & Garden: Fall is a great time to compost leaves, kitchen waste for your ... - Las Cruces Sun-News
Yard & Garden: Fall is a great time to compost leaves, kitchen waste for your ...
Las Cruces Sun-News
The leaves may also be composted in a compost pile or compost bin to be applied to the soil next year as you plant your garden. Once again, manure can be composted with the leaves and will enhance the rate of compost formation. You can also add kitchen ...
Dear Neil: Shred leaves before composting - Longview News-Journal
Dear Neil: Shred leaves before composting
Dear Neil: Is there any reason I shouldn't use pecan leaves in my compost? I've heard that the tannic acid will keep my other plants from growing well. Answer: Not at all. You'll hear that same comment about oak leaves, and the fact is that some of our ...
As a General Rule, Leave the Leaves - ABC News
As a General Rule, Leave the Leaves
LEAVES PLUS TIME EQUALS COMPOST. Still drowning in leaves? Hold off a bit longer before you pack them into trash bags. Consider packing the leaves into a dense pile for composting. Leaves make excellent, weed-free compost if you let them sit long ...
A novel idea: Leave leaves where they are
City of Buffalo collecting & composting leaves - WBFO
City of Buffalo collecting & composting leaves
The city has aggressively moved into collecting leaves and composting them, rather than putting them into the garbage system. City workers come around and collect on regular garbage days, although they use equipment specifically for picking up leaves ...
Mulch and compost your autumn leaves - NorthJersey.com
Mulch and compost your autumn leaves
"Leaves are one of the best things to compost," said Dail Reed, horticultural consultant with the Rutgers Cooperative Extension, Hackensack. She added that, because they may take a while to break down, leaves, twigs and other yard debris - often ...
Leaves being diverted from landfill, bring to Volunteer Center or SW Solid ... - Silver City Sun News
Leaves being diverted from landfill, bring to Volunteer Center or SW Solid ...
Silver City Sun News
The leaves will be used in a composting project underway at San Vicente Farms just south of town. This will be the second year for this program. Last year about six tons of leaves were diverted from the landfill and used for composting and mulch ...