Thursday, May 1, 2008

Compost Happens!

A composting bin is the perfect way to make Earth Day last all year! This is what I've learned...

1. Get a bin (Check this site for options)
2. Layer the bottom with sticks & fill 3/4 full with leaves or newspaper. Add enough water so it resembles a damp sponge.
3. Toss in scraps. Stir. Cover with 3 inches of newspaper or leaves each time you add.
4. After about 6 months you'll have nutrient rich compost.

What do you need to make great compost?
1. air
2. water (moist, but not soaking wet)
3. carbon = brown organic kitchen & yard waste (leaves, straw, wood chips, newspaper)
4. nitrogen = green organic kitchen & yard waste (dry grass, salad ends)

You need a lot more carbon than nitrogen, so rip up your newspapers. And the smaller the pieces you add, the faster the process.


Things to avoid: meat (duh), dairy (double duh), oil & fatty substances like salad dressing, citrus because it's hard to break down, diseased plants, pet poo

Things to add: leaves, sawdust, hay, straw, fruit, clean veggie waste, jack-o-lanterns, coffee grounds including the filter, tea bags

Even the smallest things, when done collectively, can make a big difference.

8 comments:

VeggieGirl said...

great tips, Vicki!! glad you're enjoying your fabulous new composting bin :0)

madeinalaska said...

bravo you are an earthday rock star!! In my neck of the woods we are kind of discouraged from composting (bird feeders are another big no no..) because of bears and other critters.. (we don't have a garage)..
I would love to give it a go someday..
truth be told I kinda compost .. We live in a very wooded lot and I will throw some rotten veggies/fruit out into the woods...being careful not to attract the bears though.. family saftey and all...

aTxVegn said...

Your compost is off to a great start. And you've got the cutest little helper!

Calimaryn said...

Oh thank you so much for the tips!

Carrie™ said...

Great post Vicki! Composting is so natural and good for the earth. We've all got blue boxes for cans, glass, plastic, newpapers, etc. and the city of Burlington has just finished distributing green boxes to everyone. They're more like little green lidded garbage cans on wheels that come with a smaller green container. This is for kitchen waste. Compostable kind. The idea is to keep the small one in the kitchen and fill it with vegetable peels, coffee grounds, etc. and then put it into the larger green container (lined with a biodegradable bag) and it gets put out at the curb for pick up. The city composts it for use in parks, flowerbeds, etc. I thought is was such a great idea since not everyone gardens or needs a compost heap. There is now only a garbage pick up every 2 weeks and there is talk of limiting the number of bags per household. It's the way to go!

Theresa said...

Isn't it great that it's so simple to reduce household waste (and get some good dirt out of the deal)? Worms make things go quicker, too!

Veggie said...

We don't have the green bins here yet and I know that none of my neighbours have a compost bin (we have 2!).

Thanks for the composting tips!!

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