A Definitive Guide to Composting

Compost is made from waste materials that easily decompose. You can make compost from your garden waste, plants clipping for example. You can also make compost from your kitchen waste such as banana peel, vegetable pieces, etc. However, when you are trying to make compost for your garden, you must be aware that not all waste materials, even if they are organic waste, can be tossed into your compost bins. Compost is made from organic waste, however, when making compost there is a rule that clearly tells what you can add and what you should not add to your compost. Some waste materials may not decompose easily, some waste materials might breed harmful germs, and might even affect the compost quality.

Weeds with roots and seeds

Weeds from the garden or in your farm with roots may still live and propagate in your compost. Avoid adding them in your compost bin. Also, weeds with seeds should be avoided because it will germinate in your compost. However, if you will dry them before putting them in your compost pile, that is possible for weeds with roots but not with seeds.

Plants infected with diseases and pests

Just like what was said in the opening of this article, there is always an exemption. Plants with diseases can be composted ONLY IF your compost pile gets at least 135 degrees Fahrenheit for a few days to let it “Therma kill” the disease. The heat will kill the disease but if your compost pile is not that hot, NEVER PUT PLANTS WITH DISEASE.

Tomatoes with seeds

Technically, you can compost tomatoes because it will rot down very quickly. However, tomato seeds can easily germinate. Unless you want tomato plants in your compost, you can include them. So, it is suggested that you should remove the seeds and plant them in your garden and keep the flesh in the compost pile.

Plants treated with insecticides

We want our plants to be free from any chemicals and plants treated with insecticides will affect the quality of our compost. Make sure that the materials you are composting are free from any chemical insecticides.

Carnivorous animals’ manure

Manure is one of the ingredients of compost but never put dog and cat manures because their manure can be harmful to our health. Dog manure has roundworms. Some experts say, you can compost them provided your compost has reached the proper heat temperature but a lot of organic farmers suggest that you should not include them in your compost.

Non-biodegradable materials.

Avoid adding materials such as plastics, glass, aluminum, metal, etc. These materials never break down. If you want to save our planet with these biodegradable materials, why not recycle them? You can use them as your seedling pots.

Bakery products

All bakery products should not be included in your compost because it will attract pests, insects, and animals. Well, bakery products are organic matter and they not only decompose but also create good compost. However, these are foods, they also attract a lot of pests. When you are tossing leftover bakery products in your compost bins, it is very likely that mouse and rats are attracted.

Cooking oil

The smell of your used cooking oil can attract animals and insects. It will slow down the composting process and may upset the moisture balance of your compost pile.

Meat

We all like meat but for our compost, please never put them there if you don’t want your compost to be feasted by insects, rodents, and pests. In addition to that, it does not break down easily. Furthermore, it also creates a strong smell during the decomposing process. The meat will rot or decompose slowly and will create a bad smell that will attract animals and insects. Just like meat, you should also not use animal bones (chicken bones, eggshells, oyster shells, etc.) in your compost. Well, animal bones are a good source of calcium but you should not add to your compost as it takes a long time to decompose. Instead of adding to your compost. You can sundry animal bones and crush them to powder and add directly on the soil.

Dairy Products

Dairy products may attract pests and if ever you will put them in the compost pile, put them in the center of your compost. But I would suggest not to include them in your compost.

Personal Care Products

Personal care products such as soap, sanitary napkins, shampoo, perfume should not be included because it contains chemicals.

Painted and pressured treated woods

These products are treated with chemicals and should be avoided including the byproducts of these woods such as sawdusts. However, all untreated woods can be included in your compost pile provided they are in dust form or tiny bits.

Glossy printed papers

This material should never be added to your compost.  Glossy papers are treated with plastic-like coatings such as magazines that will not decompose properly and this may contain chemicals and toxins.

How to compost in 30 days?

Now you know what you should strictly avoid adding to your compost you can start composting. Our primary idea of making compost is growing foods organically, therefore, we should avoid chemical treated products in our compost. Composting means anaerobic degradation of organic matter. Therefore, you should only use organic matter in your compost. Here is an easy way to make your compost in 30 days.

Toss organic waste in a container and cover it with a thin layer of soil. Toss more organic waste and again cover it with a thin layer of soil. Continue doing this until your container is full. Cover the container and let it decompose for two weeks. After two weeks, pour your compost in another container. You can do this by turning the compost container upside down just above an empty container. Cover the upper part with a thin layer of soil. Wait for two more weeks and your compost will be ready. When you are composting through this method, you should cut your waste matter into small pieces and you should use a small container.

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