super simple composting

Super Simple Composting

Composting: It’s Super Simple

Fall is a great time to get your compost up and running, and ready for spring. It’s the time of year when you have all sorts of material at hand – leaves, garden waste, fallen fruit, grass cuttings and trimmings from your shrubs and trees.

super simple compostingComposting just happens – no matter the process you use, or how much attention you give it.  Its a natural process that you can easily harness to enrich your garden soil. There are almost as many ways to make a compost as there are gardeners.

Here are some simple ways to create your own fertile and rich soil-enriching compost.

Super Simple Composting Pile

One way is to just throw everything onto a pile. No container, no bins, just a heap. Ingredients to include are all yard wastes, including weeds, garden plants, dry leaves and grass clippings. Then add kitchen scraps such as fruit and vegetable peelings, crushed egg shells and even used paper towels, but not fats, meat scraps or dairy products.

Now, just wait.

Compost will start forming, first at the bottom of the pile. As the ingredients decompose, the microorganisms and worms will migrate upwards toward new food, and compost will continue forming from the bottom up.

Shovel Composting

Another way that works well right inside the garden is sometimes referred to as shovel compost. This works well with small amounts of kitchen waste. Simply choose any spot where you would like to enrich the soil, and dig a hole.

Dump kitchen scraps into the hole and cover them with soil, chopping with the shovel to mix the soil and scraps. If you’re a fan of juicing, like I am, this is a great way to use up the left-over vegetable and fruit matter once the juice is extracted. Because the pieces are extremely small, it composts quickly.

The organic matter will become compost, with no extra work on your part at all! You can do this in your garden beds also, and next year have a richer soil for your vegetables to enjoy.

Super Simple Composting Bin

If you have access to some straw bales, this can spark another way to make compost easily. Make a simple bin to hold the compost ingredients by stacking the straw bales two high into a 3-sided enclosure. You will probably need about 10 bales. The bales will not only hold the material, but will help retain heat and moisture as the compost starts working.

super simple compostingMake loose layers of both brown and green ingredients, and every so often add a layer of soil. In a couple of years, the straw bales will be partly decomposed, and will become ingredients in your new straw bale bin, made with fresh new bales.

Whatever your choice of composting methods, the ingredients for your compost pile need to be the right mix for the best results.

Always combine fresh green nitrogen rich materials and dried carbon rich materials The green materials can include grass clippings, kitchen scraps, garden waste and even weeds that have not gone to seed.

The brown materials are generally tougher dry materials like dried leaves, sawdust, straw, shredded newspaper and even chopped up stalks of corn or other dry stalks.

Add some garden soil, manure or partly decomposed compost to introduce the microorganisms and worms that do the work. Actually, it will start ‘working’ without the soil, but that will start it more quickly.

With these super simple composting methods, and balanced amounts of these three types of materials and soon you will be using your own rich black compost to feed anything your garden grows.

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