What is compost?
Ever ask yourself what is compost, anyways? Well, compost is basically organic materials that have decayed and have been broken down by living organisms. This process continuously occurs in nature when leaves and other organic matter collects on the ground.
Composting in your own backyard helps accelerate this process. The resulting substance is rich in nutrients and feeds plants, improves soil quality and even helps prevent weeds.
You may also ask yourself, “Why compost, just for some free fertilizer?”. But there is so much more to composting and so many great benefits:
It reduces the amount of trash that goes to the landfill not to mention the amount you have to lug to the curb on trash day. By composting food & garden waste and recycling we’ve reduced the amount of trash we throw away down to only one bag per week.
Your garbage will smell less. Composting a large portion of the food scraps you would normally throw in the trash also reduces the amount of rotting food in your trash. Which would otherwise stink and attract roaches.
You feel good because you’re helping the environment, less methane is produced in landfills (a powerful greenhouse gas).
It’s great for your soil, it can be used as an amendment to improve soil quality. And also improves the soil structure and texture by allowing airflow and improving its ability to hold water.
It’s even better for your plants. Compost gives plants tons of nutrients to keep them healthy, so they can grow better and fight off disease.
It’s free! You don’t have to use chemical fertilizers or pay extra for organic nontoxic ones.
You can use it in even the smallest of gardens. It doesn’t matter if you only have a few houseplants or just a few herbs on your windowsill, they will all benefit from compost. Use it in planted plants, potted plants, containers and window boxes.
It’s fun! Kids and adults (including me) love to see all the critters that visit the pile or bin. We’ve had worms, frogs, spiders and all sorts of strange bugs in our compost bin.
This is the first part of a composting mini series, be sure to check out the next installment: How To Compost