Compost is an organic substance that you can make at home or buy from the market. Gardeners mix compost with garden soil to increase the fertility of the soil. So that they can grow any type of plant without nutrient deficiencies and the process is called composting. Compost itself has many nutrients like Nitrogen, Potassium, and some trace minerals.
In simple words, compost is a complete food for your nutrient-deficient soil.
The nutritional value of compost directly depends on the substances that are selected to decompose to make a good amount of composting material. When the collected organic material decomposes properly you get dirt like material this material is called compost.
Compost is always an organic material.
Composting is like a lifeline of your garden. If your garden soil is not perfect for growing fruits and vegetables. Just add compost into the soil and the soil will be ready for planting within 2 days.
The soil absorbs the nutrients from the compost as well as the plant.
To make nutrient-rich compost you need to collect organic waste like leaves, grass, your kitchen waste, eggshells, etc. Many people also use animal manure along with the mentioned ingredients.
In composting, you make a heap of organic waste at a place and wait for the material to convert into humus. It takes more than 30 days to make compost at home or commercial level. All you need to do is just give water to it to keep it wet to start decomposing and regularly turning the mixture so that the mixture can get fresh air.
Benefits of using composting
Increase soil nutrients
Compost is also called soil conditioner. It increases the number of natural nutrients in the soil and makes it suitable to grow any plant without a nutrient deficiency problem. As the compost contains all organic waste it has a high number of organic nutrients that growing plants absorb and produce more yield. All you need to do is just mix the compost in the upper layer of the soil and plants grown compost mixed soil always produce highly nutritional yield.
Clean up Contaminated Soil
Compost helps to clean up the pesticides and other harmful chemicals from the soil. Compost contains many types of microorganisms that break down the chemical compounds in the soil and convert them to helpful bacteria.
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Recycle kitchen waste
You will be surprised to know that you can make your compost at home by using kitchen waste and plant waste. You can mix eggshells, vegetable scrap, used coffee, used green tea bags, rice, etc to make homemade organic compost. Organic compost can contain any nutritional material. This helps you to recycle your kitchen waste and increase your garden health.
Manage Garden waste
No need to throw out the garden waste and no need to call the lawn movers to clean garden waste for you. Just collect all the garden waste including green and dry leaves, broken branches, dead grass, dead plants, etc at one place. Add some water and wait until it decomposes completely and you get good quality compost at home. This way you can save your money in two ways. One is you do not need to buy compost from the market and second is you don’t need to pay for the garden cleaning to garden management agencies.
Helps to reduce greenhouse gases
When the garbage department picks up the food waste to throw into landfills. It cannot decay properly due to many reasons and the half-decomposed material releases methane gas in the environment. This gas contributes to global warming. You can help the world to reduce this gas by making compost for your garden from house waste.
How to use Compost in Garden?
Use the garden fork and till the upper 6 inches of soil then spread the compost equally over the treated area. Now again till the soil so that the compost can go deep into the soil and soil stay on the top. This way compost stays in the upper 6 to 9 inches of soil. Now the soil is ready for planting.
Make Liquid Fertilizer
You can make a liquid fertilizer out of your compost. Once your compost is ready put it in one basket and add some water into it. One part of compost and three-part of water is the ideal composition. Leave the mixture for 48 hours and stir it a couple of times a day. Now give this liquid to your plants. You can use the same batch of compost up to 3 times to make liquid fertilizer at home.
Add compost to your home-made potting mix or give few ounces of compost to each plant.
How to make organic compost at home?
You can make compost by the below-written steps.
Container: Select a container that you think is enough big for the compost you want. Make two holes at the bottom and on sides make holes at 5 inches apart vertically and 10 inches apart horizontally. Or you can use the compost bins and compost turners available on Amazon.
Air: Air is a must to make compost out of organic material. Therefore, add few tree branches and twigs at the bottom of the container. this allows the air to enter into the container and prevents fungus-like problems.
Balance: You need to give your compost a balance of Nitrogen, Water, Air, and Carbon dioxide. The greens you add in it give nitrogen and dry browns release carbon dioxide.
Include: The best ingredients that you should add to your compost are dry plant leaves, fruits, vegetables, peelings, coffee, dog food, old herbs, spices, shredded newspaper, wine cork, hair, etc.
Avoid: Do not add meat, dairy items and bread of any kind because these materials attract the pests. This action can contaminate the compost. Also, avoid adding processed foods because they took too long to decompose.
ADDING NEW STUFF: If you are going to add material daily than add the new stuff under the pile. This way you speed up the process of composting.
Mixing: Mix the material well once in a week until it completely decomposes and your compost gets ready.
ADD WATER: Add water into the mixture when you feel it is getting dry. The important thing is covering the container with a lid to prevent rot and other fungus conditions.
You will get homemade organic compost in just a few months. When your mixture turns into black color and releases heat and feels warm on touch, this means the compost is ready.
Difference between composting and fertilizing?
The main difference between compost and fertilizers is fertilizers are made to feed the plant and compost is made to nourish the soil.
Fertilizers add more nutrients to the soil so that the plant can easily absorb them. Composting the garden generally has no limit but fertilizers are required according to the plant’s need and health.
Using compost and fertilizers together is the best combination to grow fruits and vegetables in the yard.