Everyone wants to live lighter on the planet, but some earth-friendly options are harder to implement than others. Thankfully, there are some simple ways that you can lower your impact on the environment while saving you money and benefiting your garden in the process. The most obvious step, of course is making your own compost. Not only will you be saving your food and yard waste from sitting in a landfill, you’ll also come away with a high quality garden amendment that’s as good for your vegetables as it is for the greater environment.
Adding compost to your garden is one of the best ways to improve your soil fertility, as well as efficiently get rid of kitchen and yard waste without it costing you any time or money.
Best Tips For Success
When you look at the facts, making your own compost is truly a win for your garden, the planet, and your wallet. With a little time and plenty of experimentation, you shouldn’t have any problem turning your organic waste materials into a high quality soil additive.
If you find yourself coming up on some problems or questions, these tips should help you find your way to success.
- Keep more carbon than nitrogen in your pile. A good rule of thumb is to shoot for one third green material and two thirds brown. Piles need the bulk of brown material in order to allow oxygen to get through, and too much nitrogen produces stinky piles that decompose slowly.
- Activate your compost. Kick start the decomposition process by adding some compost ‘activators’ to your pile like grass clippings, comfrey leaves, young weeds and even aged chicken manure.
- Keep insects away by covering sweet smelling fruit and vegetable scraps with a heavy layer of brown material or grass clippings.
- Avoid unpleasant odors by remembering not to add bones or meat scraps to the pile and by covering every “ripe” new addition with plenty of neutral smelling brown material like straw or sawdust. If the problem gets out of control, the addition of lime or calcium can help neutralize the smell.