Composting is a natural process that takes organic waste and turns it into nutrient-rich soil. This process can take anywhere from six months to two years, depending on the type of compost bin you have. The first thing you need to do if you want your compost pile to work properly is found or buy a good compost bin for your needs and space.
Table of Content
- Why Composting Is Essential?
- Shredding Makes for Small Wood
- Types of Compost Bin
- Why and How Often to Turn the Compost Heap
- Living Conditions of the Microorganisms Involved in the Compost Heap
Why Composting Is Essential?
Composting at home is essential because it helps us to recycle what we would normally throw away and produce rich soil for gardening. Organic wastes such as food scraps, yard trimmings, paper products, sawdust, or even manure can be used in a compost pile. The decomposing process takes these organic materials and turns them into nutrient-rich soil that gardeners love!
What can be put on the compost?
- Coffee filter bags
- Vegetable and fruit waste
- Straw and litter
- Lawn, shrub, and tree cuttings
- Composting Cardboard
What should not be put on the compost?
- Non-vegetable food scraps
- Citrus fruits
- diseased plant parts
- Cat litter
As a general rule, variety matters. Layers of only one component higher than 7.87 inches will hinder the composting process. The foliage of some trees, such as oak, chestnut, and walnut, decomposes very slowly and is, therefore, better not added to the compost in large quantities.
Shredding Makes for Small Wood
Everyday gardening produces lots of herbaceous flower or shrub clippings, twigs, small branches, bunches of flowers, and the like. If you throw this material into the compost un-shredded, it piles up high and takes years to decompose. With a chipper shredder for composting, you reduce the volume and the compost is ready for use much faster. Alternatively, you can spread the chipped material under trees and shrubs to mulch the soil.
Types of Compost Bin
There are three types of compost bins.
Plastic Stationary Bins
Plastic stationary bins are sturdy and can be quite large. They’re often black to absorb the sun’s rays, which speeds up decomposition. The downside is that they tend to attract rodents if not covered or built with a rodent-proof design.
The best place for these types of composters indoors would be a garage or other outbuilding.
If the bin is not enclosed, it has to be turned in regularly.
Tumbling or Rotating Bins
Compost Tumblers are also called rotating composters, and they’re made of wood or plastic. They allow you to turn the pile more easily than stationary ones do. They usually have removable lids, with the bottom of the bin containing a door that opens to allow access to your compost ingredients. The tumbling action allows oxygen into the pile and creates air pockets where carbon-aerobic bacteria can thrive.
Worm composting is also known as vermicomposting. In this system, you add red worms to a bin or box filled with layers of bedding, food scraps, and soil. As the worms eat through the materials in your bin, they release nutrients that help plants grow.
Why and How Often to Turn the Compost Heap
Turning the heap is important for several reasons. It ensures that parts of the compost are moved to different levels, bringing them into contact with different microbes and thus speeding up decomposition, it also helps mix in any new material added or sprouting weeds pulled from outside its perimeter. Turning allows excess moisture to drain away more easily too – especially in warmer weather when microbial action speeds up rapidly, adding weight to a composter may prevent your compost aerator from getting in! Another reason why some gardeners do not like wire-mesh bins is that they rust quickly under wet conditions leading to sharp edges on the bin and even holes in the mesh.
Living Conditions of the Microorganisms Involved in the Compost Heap
In some climates, the microbes involved in composting may not be able to survive throughout the winter. In these cases, a separate system can be used as an alternative or as part of a larger overall food waste solution for your garden. This is the best option if you want to continue turning and aerating your heap regularly – it will also reduce odors! A simple rotating drum composter that turns annually provides all kinds of benefits: firstly they are great at mixing up all those layers on top with everything underneath so different wastes can break down faster; secondly more air is let into the center where aerobic decomposition occurs quickly without needing extreme temperatures.