Composting is key to a green backyard! It not only reduces the trash in landfills but also improves your backyard at home! That means bigger produce, prettier flowers, and a healthier garden that can come at no extra cost to you. Follow our easy steps on how to start your own backyard compost and you’ll be amazed at the change in your garden and the amount of garbage you throw away.
Step One: Collecting
First, you need to gather and accumulate the material you’re going to be composting. One of the easiest ways to remind yourself to do this is to keep a pail with a lid on it just outside the back door or in your kitchen. However, you will want to make sure the lid has a good seal to avoid the smell and attracting pests. Since you have the small bin there in sight, you’ll find it encourages you to keep this type of waste in mind. We highly recommend getting into the habit of taking out the bin to your pile after dinner in order to stay on top of the process!
Step Two: Protect your Pile
This is one of the most important steps when it comes to composting. If you decide not to get or make a compost bin with a lid, you absolutely must cover it with dirt regularly! It is a guarantee that if you have raw scraps in plain sight you will attract lots of pests. This is no good for you and no good for your neighbours. You must take care to secure your pile!
It is also important to get the right combination of nitrogen and carbon in your pile. If you’re anything like us and don’t want to constantly check and measure, an easy way to do this is to have your compost be half green, half brown, and to keep it moist. “Green” waste includes moist matter like fruits and vegetables while “brown” waste is dry matter items like wood shavings, dry leaves, or even old newspapers.
Step Three: Compost Correctly
So, we’ve gone through what you should compost, but is there anything you shouldn’t? Yes, absolutely stay away from meat, bones, and animal waste from carnivores (meat eaters). These scraps contain pathogens and other nasty stuff that you don’t want around your plant food. We also recommend not throwing out dairy as this (along with meat and bones) will start to smell and attract pests.
Step Four: Waiting
Once you’ve got a sizeable compost pile, you’ll find that over a few weeks, scraps will turn into soil. You will want to turn the pile every week or two to in order to mix it up and encourage the process, but you should see rich, fertile soil pretty quickly. If you’re not seeing progress after a few weeks, try to add more “green” material. Also, if you find that your pile is smelly and wet, simply add more “brown” material.
Starting your own backyard compost is a great way to help lessen your ecological footprint as well as save money on expensive, rich soil for your garden. With these easy steps, you’ll find your compost will come together so quickly it will seem like you’ve always had it! For more gardening and household tips, be sure to follow Falconcrest’s blog series!