Compost: What Is It and How You Can Make It at Home

Organic waste makes up a large part of the waste we generate in our homes, which goes straight to the garbage and is lost. This entails an enormous loss, not only economically but also of resources. Let’s think of everything invested in producing these foods, packaging them, and transporting them until they reach our table.

We are throwing away leftovers we could use to return to our soil those valuable nutrients it needs. Imagine if we could take advantage of this, give that waste a second use and recycle it in a conscious and viable way, considerably reducing our environmental footprint.

WHAT IS COMPOSTING ALL ABOUT?

Compost is about getting a highly nutritious fertilizer for our garden or orchard by decomposing organic materials or animals under specific controlled conditions. The organic waste used can be food scraps (fruits, vegetables, eggshells, coffee), plant remains (dry leaves, branches), paper or cardboard (as long as they do not have ink), and even wood shavings.

Composting is an essential part of the fertilization process of our soils and brings many benefits. It improves its health, allows water to penetrate and be better absorbed, and helps it be more resistant to erosion caused by wind. All this brings macronutrients to our soil and improves its biological activity to maintain biodiversity, micro, and macro-fauna.

HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN COMPOST AT HOME

There are several types of compost and different ways to prep. It depends on each one’s possibilities, the space we have in our garden or orchard, and the willingness and disposition we have.

Making compost is actually a very simple process. You will only need a large container; it could be a plastic container, a wooden crate, or, if you want to invest more money, you can also buy a composter, although it is not mandatory.

  1. In your plastic bin or wooden crate, cover the bottom with grass and dry leaves. It must be placed where it does not get direct sunlight because it must maintain its humidity.
  2. Now, place the organic residues (fruit, vegetable, and eggshells, grass) and pruning residues (branches, grass, leaves). These branches will allow air circulation, which is necessary for composting. Then cover it with more grass and leaves.
  3. Always keep your compost moist; this way, all the microorganisms that appear will do their job better. You mustn’t throw prepared food waste (meat, pasta, fish, etc.) into the compost.

 

  1. Mix it from time to time and, if you consider it necessary, you can add red Californian earthworms to speed up the process. Cover it with a lid or mesh.

 

And that’s it! In 6 to 8 weeks, you will be able to see the result of your compost. It is a very simple process with many benefits for you, your garden, and most importantly, our planet. Let’s take care of it together!

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